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  1. What is in Kevin Durant’s backpack?

    May 12, 2011, 11:51 AM EDT

    kevin-durant-backpack

    He has done this all season long — when Kevin Durant does a post-game interview he is often wearing a backpack. In the locker room, on a podium, wearing a sweater or a shirt and tie, doesn’t matter. He’s wearing a backpack. That lead’s to the greatest mystery of this NBA season: What is in…

  2. LeBron James apologizes for “The Decision”

    May 12, 2011, 11:18 AM EDT

    Boston Celtics v Miami Heat - Game Five

    LeBron James has said before that he regretted how “The Decision” went down, how it was perceived. Wednesday night, after he was incredibly clutch, after he slayed some demons, after his Heat team knocked off the Boston Celtics, LeBron apologized for The Decision, as reported by Brian Windhorst of ESPN. “I knew deep down in…

  3. Did Danny Ainge cost the Celtics this championship? No.

    May 12, 2011, 10:54 AM EDT

    Cleveland Cavaliers v Boston Celtics

    It’s an obvious and easy target. A changing point in the Celtics season. Back at the start of February, the Celtics were 37-11, the top seed in the East, three games ahead of Miami, three-and-a-half ahead of the Chicago Bulls. They were title contenders. They had gotten Kendrick Perkins back in the lineup and Shaquille…

  4. Report: owners “big” concession is hard salary cap phased in

    May 12, 2011, 10:00 AM EDT

    NBA & NBA Players Association Announce New CBA

    When the owners submitted their new proposal to the players at the end of last month, they said they had heard the players concerns and made concessions. Apparently, that big concession is to phase in a hard salary cap over two years rather than just drop it on everyone next year, according to Marc Stein…

  5. Trailer for new Steve Nash documentary

    May 12, 2011, 8:45 AM EDT

    Portland Trail Blazers v Phoenix Suns

    Steve Nash knows a little something about documentaries. He directed the fantastic “Into the Wind” about Terry Fox for ESPN’s 30 for 30 series. He has his own production company. But he is on the other end of the lens in a new documentary called “Nash.” Which we know nothing about. The shots in the…

  6. LeBron predicted playoffs would be different against the Celtics

    May 12, 2011, 8:00 AM EDT

    lebron-celtics-all-star

    Back in February over All-Star weekend in Los Angeles, I got the chance to ask LeBron James about the Heat’s struggles with the Celtics. Up until that point, Boston had defeated Miami in all three of the teams’ meetings during the first half of the season,  and it appeared as though the Celtics’ style of…

  7. NBA Playoffs: Witnessing the ascension

    May 12, 2011, 3:22 AM EDT

    Miami Heat v Boston Celtics

    This was the dream. For all the criticism, the spontaneous hatred from people he never met in cities he’d never lived, for the questions and the scrutiny, this was what he had hoped for. When LeBron James decided to abandon the franchise that drafted him and pursue a team that didn’t think Wally Sczcerbiak/Ben Wallace/Mo…

  8. In the end, it was about the Heat execution

    May 12, 2011, 2:14 AM EDT

    T-Mobile Magenta Carpet At The NBA All-Star Game - Arrivals

    End of game execution — their best players stepping up in the clutch. That was the modus operandi Boston’s “big three” of Kevin Garnett, Ray Allen and Paul Pierce for years. They were better than you at both ends when it mattered most. That is why championship banner 17 flies in Boston. Miami’s “big three”…

  9. NBA Playoffs: Thunder crush Grizzlies in Game 5

    May 12, 2011, 12:50 AM EDT

    durant-randolph-game-5

    As fans, we should have expected this. After the Thunder and the Grizzlies played the best and most competitive game of these playoffs in Game 4, when the teams fought through three overtimes before the final outcome was decided, they needed less than two quarters of basketball to decide Game 5. OKC used a 15-2…

  10. Doc Rivers “leaning heavily” toward coming back

    May 11, 2011, 11:36 PM EDT

    Doc Rivers

    Apparently Doc Rivers wants to do more than just hang out around Mike Krzyzewski’s practices next season. After a season where the conventional wisdom was he was walking away at the end of the season, he said after the Celtics were eliminated Wednesday you probably will have him to kick around next season, as reported…

  11. NBA Playoffs: James, Wade defeat Celtics, their demons

    May 11, 2011, 11:24 PM EDT

    Boston Celtics v Miami Heat - Game Five

    In the summer of 2007, a former league MVP and a perennial All-Star joined a franchise player to form a group that, when healthy, dominated the NBA’s Eastern Conference and kept its two best players from reaching an NBA Finals. They took out LeBron James‘ Cavaliers in 2008 in an amazing seven-game series that culminated…

  12. Celtics will be back for one more run, but they shouldn’t

    May 11, 2011, 10:47 PM EDT

    Boston Celtics v New York Knicks - Game Four

    The time has now passed. The window has closed. Make no mistake, the Celtics are still a good team. Bring them back next year and they will win 50-plus games and put up a fight in the playoffs. But they are not a great team. Nor will they be again with this group. Boston fought valiantly in…

  13. Don’t count on Byron Scott as next Lakers coach

    May 11, 2011, 8:43 PM EDT

    Cleveland Cavaliers  v Miami Heat

    Byron Scott is a favorite son of Lakers owner Jerry Buss. Scott has openly lusted for the Lakers coaching gig. The Lakers have an open coaching vacancy, ergo… No. Don’t go there. To start with, Scott has a job as the Cavaliers head coach and as the Cleveland Plain Dealer tweeted they are not giving…

  14. Kobe says don’t break up Lakers, they can win again

    May 11, 2011, 7:20 PM EDT

    Los Angeles Lakers' Kobe Bryant talks during a news conference after the Lakers were knocked out of the NBA basketball playoffs in Los Angeles

    Lakers fans are ready to break up the team. It’s not like they won two previous championships and 57 games this past season. (Oh, wait…) They had a very bad playoffs, they looked fatigued and disinterested, they ran basic sets of the triangle offense and not the depth of it needed to counter what the…

  15. Oprah is bigger than NBA, league may bend schedule

    May 11, 2011, 6:05 PM EDT

    Oprah Winfrey

    You do not mess with Oprah Winfrey. Especially not on her home turf in Chicago. The NBA is not about to try. It will move its schedule around to accommodate the queen of daytime television, the Miami Herald reports. The NBA informed a few involved parties before Tuesday’s Bulls game that if the Heat and…

  16. NBA Playoffs: Will Grizzlies, Thunder players have anything left?

    May 11, 2011, 5:36 PM EDT

    Oklahoma City Thunder Russell Westbrook drives to the basket by Memphis Grizzlies Marc Gasol and Shane Battier in Memphis

    Game 4 between the Grizzlies and Thunder was exhausting. For me, as a fan, sitting on a couch. I can’t imagine what it took out of the players. And for a crucial Game 5 with the series tied 2-2, that is where the questions start — who is going to have the most energy? Mental…

  17. Shaq may never play in the NBA again. And that’s sad.

    May 11, 2011, 4:24 PM EDT

    2009 NBA All-Star Game

    We’re going to miss Shaquille O’Neal. Not the Shaq of this season, or even the last several. Not the guy who has played just 17 minutes since Feb. 1 because even that little time aggravates his leg injuries. That is a shell of the former player, a guy who at his peak was one of…

  18. NBA Playoffs: Can Celtics’ veteran savvy, desperation fix many problems?

    May 11, 2011, 2:56 PM EDT

    Miami Heat forward LeBron James and Chris Boch react towards the end of the fourth quarter against the Boston Celtics in Game 4 of their NBA Eastern Conference playoff series in Boston

    Through four games, the Miami Heat have exposed and exploited so many advantages against the Boston Celtics that it’s hard to logically pick the Celtics in Game 5 Wednesday night in Miami. A win and the Heat close out the series, and a Miami win seems as inevitable as David Caruso taking off his sunglasses…

  19. Griffin, Wall headline NBA’s All-Rookie team (as expected)

    May 11, 2011, 2:30 PM EDT

    Los Angeles Clippers v Dallas Mavericks

    Usually my gut reaction is to just shred the voters when the NBA’s annual awards are announced. Because there always are some loopy choices. Except, with the All-Rookie teams announced Wednesday, I don’t hate it. First, so what we know we are talking about, here is your NBA All-Rookie first team: Blake Griffin, L.A. Clippers…

  20. Pau Gasol leaning toward playing for Spain this summer

    May 11, 2011, 1:59 PM EDT

    Pau Gasol

    Because Pau Gasol didn’t look the least bit fatigued in the playoffs…. The Lakers big man said in his exit interview that he is leaning toward playing for Spain as it tries to qualify for the 2012 Summer Olympics, according to ESPN Los Angeles. The last couple summers Gasol said the Lakers deep runs into…

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