Sep 19, 2012, 10:33 AM EDT
LeBron James returned to Cleveland last season saying he would not rule out perhaps one day again playing for the Cavaliers.
Ray Allen took out a full-page ad in Boston to remind Celtics fans how much he cherishes their time together.
Grant Hill is back in Phoenix speaking fondly about his time with the Suns, even after moving to a division rival, with the Suns talking about Hill one day moving into their front office.
Know what the NBA needs just about now? Something along the lines of bounty-gate.
Because leagues are at their best when rivalries are pure, lines are drawn, when you’re either with us or against us.
Oh, there’s still some of that in today’s NBA, including the surliness of Kevin Garnett and Kendrick Perkins toward anyone not in their team’s colors, and the one-upmanship between the front offices of the Nets and Knicks, but at a time when Kevin Durant is working out alongside LeBron, it does tend to take the edge of what the NBA once was, the pulsating chants of “Beat L.A.!” even when you weren’t actually playing L.A.
During a recent community even in Boston, Celtics coach Doc Rivers urged a singular approach for the coming season for his players: “I bring up Miami every single day to them. I want them to hate them. I want them to beat them. That’s gotta be our focus.”
Instead, we’re getting Hornets players working out alongside Spurs players in San Antonio, open gyms around the NBA featuring visits by opposing players, including one just the other day from Derek Fisher at the Lakers’ facility.
To a degree, this is a global community the NBA has forged, a shared bond of furthering the game, if not necessarily furthering rivalries.
It is why Mark Cuban remains somewhat refreshing with his Mavs-vs.-the-world approach, why we now, more than ever, can appreciate how Pat Riley had so fervently preached against fraternization.
The Heat were fun last season because they were compelling. They might have been more fun the season before, when they were loathed.
You may not condone what Greg Schiano pulled this week against the Giants, but he made it clear this was not about winning friends. It was about competition, a line that sometimes gets blurred in today’s NBA.
Apr 18, 2014, 11:55 PM EDT
This should be the East’s most competitive first round matchup.
Apr 18, 2014, 10:31 PM EDT
How quickly can Miami flip the switch?
Apr 18, 2014, 9:16 PM EDT
Can the Pacers regain their early-season swagger now that the playoffs are here?
Apr 18, 2014, 7:49 PM EDT
Grizzlies’ guard will definitely be missed in the rotation.
Apr 18, 2014, 6:45 PM EDT
Expect a fight by the end of Game 2.
Apr 18, 2014, 5:50 PM EDT
People shouldn’t sleep on the Raptors, particularly the Nets.
Apr 18, 2014, 5:05 PM EDT
Dallas has lost nine straight to San Antonio. Don’t expect that streak to stop now.
Apr 18, 2014, 4:19 PM EDT
All the draft lottery odds are here, so Lakers fans can look and see what that little run of wins to close out the season did to their odds.
Apr 18, 2014, 3:27 PM EDT
We look at all 8 first round series.
Apr 18, 2014, 2:37 PM EDT
Memphis’ grit and grind will make it hard on the Thunder.
Apr 18, 2014, 1:45 PM EDT
Rockets in 7
Apr 18, 2014, 1:05 PM EDT
First-team frontcourt a constant, but guard spots debated
Apr 18, 2014, 12:29 PM EDT
Bulls in 6
Apr 18, 2014, 11:44 AM EDT
While nothing is set in stone (Mike Woodson has yet to be officially fired) you know back channel conversations have already taken place. It sounds like Kerr wants in.
Apr 18, 2014, 11:10 AM EDT
Behold: The Air Jordan XX9.
Apr 18, 2014, 11:05 AM EDT
Kevin Durant and LeBron James finish 1-2 on every ballot
Apr 18, 2014, 10:33 AM EDT
Playing effective NBA defense is more about dictating shot location than contesting shots.
Apr 18, 2014, 10:00 AM EDT
Taking a lot of 3s and making a lot of 2s is not easy
Apr 18, 2014, 9:15 AM EDT
With Andrew Bogut the Warriors outplayed the Clippers this season, but Golden State will be without him and that is trouble.
Apr 18, 2014, 8:44 AM EDT
The league will try to offer a larger, better paying D-League
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