Jun 4, 2013, 7:16 PM EDT
Here is our regular look around the NBA — links to stories worth reading and notes to check out (stuff that did not get its own post here at PBT) — done in bullet point form. Because bloggers love bullet points more than Americans like cheese… and we like cheese…
• Game 7 between the Heat and Pacers drew the largest audience ever for a TNT game, 11.5 million viewers. That, however, is still down from last year when the the Heat’s Game 7 in the Eastern Conference Finals was against the larger market Celtics and drew 13.1 million to ESPN.
• Flopping is again the buzzword of the NBA playoffs. People think it’s a recent phenomenon, or one brought over by Vlade Divac and the European players of the 1990s. Wrong. Here’s a great find at Grantland about how players on the 1960s Celtics title teams used to sell calls.
• Phil Jackson says the 2004 Pistons flopped to help beat Shaquille O’Neal and the Lakers.
• A look at the best wing players available as free agents. Andre Iguodala rightfully tops the list, but there’s a good chance he and Denver work out a multi-year deal (just at less per year than the $16 million he is opting out of). Then the drop off is pretty steep, down to O.J. Mayo next.
• There was some buzz that the Celtics had made a first-round draft promise to Dennis Schroeder. That appears to not be the case, but it feels like somebody did.
• The Maloof family took out a full page ad in the Sunday Sacramento Bee to thank Kings fans. All Kings fans want now is for the Maloofs to go away.
• Here is a Q&A with Damian Lillard.
• I like reading Scoop Jackson, but he could not have been wider of the mark when he blasted the Grizzlies after they were eliminated saying lost because of the Rudy Gay trade. Memphis was provably better after the trade. I say they wouldn’t have made it out of the first round with him. Tom Ziller over at SBN soes a good job ripping Scoops’s “logic” apart.
• I have no idea why anybody buys into the rumors that he would, but Spurs GM R.C. Buford is not going anywhere.
• The Orlando Magic have let go of television color analyst Matt Guokas. Which sucks. Trust me, as someone who watches a whole lot of League Pass and announcers from all across the NBA, he was a breath of fresh air because he was honest, smart and not a pure homer for his team. Why was he fired? Probably because he wasn’t enough of a homer. Ugh.
• Is Erik Spoelstra on track to be a Hall of Fame coach? The Magic 8 Ball says “ask again later.”
• John Stockton has written an autobiography titled “Assisted.” Karl Malone wrote the forward, for once giving Malone the assist.
• Former NBA player Fred Jones has launched a new NBA social media site, plus an app to go with it.
• Finally a great feature at NBA.com of the guy I am most rooting for to get drafted this year: James Enis of Long Beach State. Guy is a good risk in the second round.
- Derrick Rose on sexual assault suit: “I am confident I will be proven innocent” 0
- Report: Kyrie Irving likely not back opening night, could be out until January 8
- Legendary Sixer, backboard-shattering dunker Darryl Dawkins dies at 58 10
- After Rio Olympics next summer, who takes over at Team USA coach? 5
- Kobe, Shaq discuss regrets over feud that ended their Lakers era 47
- NBA fines Clippers for attempting to circumvent salary cap with DeAndre Jordan 10
- The most overlooked – and maybe most significant – reason Carmelo Anthony won’t waive his no-trade clause this season 17
- Phil Jackson is optimistic about Knicks coming season, except the start 7