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  1. LeBron says rings alone don’t define a player’s career

    Feb 16, 2013, 11:30 AM EDT

    Miami Heat's James listens to a question during media availability for the NBA All-Star basketball game in Houston

    HOUSTON — The argument has been the fallback of Kobe Bryant defenders (he needs defenders?) for years. That it’s about the rings, that’s what makes him better than his peers. Michael Jordan himself even went there in picking Kobe over LeBron James in a recent interview, saying the five-to-one title disparity decided it. LeBron was…

  2. Be sure to give Dean Smith some credit for Jordan’s success

    Feb 16, 2013, 10:31 AM EDT

    Michael Jordan North Carolina

    When you see the retrospective highlight clips of Michael Jordan this weekend, they almost all start with him in Carolina blue, knocking down the jumper that wins the Tar Heels a national championship. But did that and the three seasons Jordan played at North Carolina make his six NBA titles and the rest of his…

  3. Ricky Rubio with some ridiculous highlights from the Rising Stars Challenge (VIDEO)

    Feb 16, 2013, 9:30 AM EDT

    Timberwolves Rubio is guarded by Portland Trail Blazers Lillard during the first half of the NBA BBVA Rising Star Challenge basketball game in Houston

    Kenneth Faried may have won the MVP of the Rising Stars Challenge on Friday, and Kyrie Irving may have stolen the show. But Ricky Rubio had some impressive highlights of his own during the game that definitely deserve to be noticed. The brilliance in this clip’s first highlight doesn’t seem to be recognized by either…

  4. Dunk contest contestants discuss plans for All-Star Saturday night

    Feb 16, 2013, 8:00 AM EDT

    gerald green cupcake

    HOUSTON — In advance of the main event of All-Star Saturday night, the participants had some thoughts on the overall aesthetics of the Slam Dunk Contest, and argued over who the actual favorite is to take home the trophy in 2013. Kenneth Faried, he of the Rising Stars MVP performance on Friday, seemed to be…

  5. Report: Lakers, Celtics discussed Howard for Rondo swap. Lakers deny it.

    Feb 16, 2013, 2:31 AM EDT

    Dwight Howard

    UPDATE February 16: 2:31 am: It didn’t take long for this rumor to be shot down by one of the principles involved, Lakers GM Mitch Kupchak. The buzz started Friday night that the Lakers and Celtics had discussed a Dwight Howard for Rajon Rondo (there would need to be other players). And before you say…

  6. Report: Clippers and Celtics still discussing a Kevin Garnett trade

    Feb 16, 2013, 1:38 AM EDT

    Boston Celtics v Los Angeles Clippers

    You may remember hearing some rumblings about this a few weeks back, but apparently the interest hasn’t died down. The Celtics and Clippers have been rumored as potential trade partners before, and that makes some sense. Boston is going to need to rebuild at some point, and the Clippers have a chance at a title…

  7. Kyrie Irving, Brandon Knight go at each other late in Rising Stars Challenge (VIDEO)

    Feb 15, 2013, 11:54 PM EDT

    BBVA Rising Stars Challenge 2013

    HOUSTON — Kenneth Faried was the MVP of the Rising Stars Challenge at the Toyota Center in Houston on Friday, finishing with a game-high 40 points while his Team Chuck beat Team Shaq 163-135. But Kyrie Irving and Brandon Knight stole the show. Late in the game with a little over five minutes remaining, Irving and…

  8. Kenneth Faried hustles his way to Rising Stars MVP (and win)

    Feb 15, 2013, 11:53 PM EDT

    Denver Nuggets Faried goes in for a dunk during the NBA BBVA Rising Star Challenge basketball game in Houston

    HOUSTON — Kenneth Faried gets minutes in the NBA because he works harder than everyone else on the court. He is pure energy and hustle. There is no half speed, it’s all-out every play. Even in the BBVA Rising Star exhibition game on the Friday Night of All-Star weekend. Which is why the Nuggets forward…

  9. Drexler, Mutombo, Olajuwon, Tomjanovich, and Yao Ming to judge 2013 Slam Dunk Contest

    Feb 15, 2013, 9:51 PM EDT

    clyde drexler

    Clyde Drexler, Dikembe Mutombo, Hakeem Olajuwon, Rudy Tomjanovich, and Yao Ming will serve as judges in the 2013 Sprite Slam Dunk Contest, the NBA announced today. The Houston connection runs deep, as all five legends will score all of the dunks in the event’s first round. In case you needed credentials for each of these…

  10. Isaiah Thomas says Kings players trying to keep heads down during ownership fight

    Feb 15, 2013, 8:59 PM EDT

    Isaiah Thomas

    HOUSTON — Kings guard Isaiah Thomas’ says his phone is constantly buzzing with tweets and texts from friends asking, “when are you and the Kings coming home to Seattle?” Thomas grew up is Seattle and played at the University of Washington. Then the Sacramento Kings drafted him and he has embraced California’s capital like few…

  11. Chris Paul discusses his place in the MVP conversation

    Feb 15, 2013, 8:24 PM EDT

    BKN-NBA-CLIPPERS-LAKERS

    HOUSTON — Chris Paul is having one of his best overall seasons, leading a deep and talented Clippers team to top-tier status playing among the elite in the Western Conference. Paul’s importance as the main cog that keeps the Clippers machine running was spotlighted recently, when his team struggled with a record of just 2-7…

  12. Dwight Howard says Lakers told him he will not be traded

    Feb 15, 2013, 7:24 PM EDT

    Los Angeles Lakers Howard answers a question during media availability for the NBA All-Star basketball game in Houston

    HOUSTON — Dwight Howard was among the more popular players in terms of media attention on Friday, and it wasn’t because of his sparkling smile or fun-loving personality. All of the players participating in the events of All-Star weekend had group availability sessions, and between the constant struggles of the Lakers this season and Howard’s…

  13. Zach Randolph thinks Grizzlies better set for playoffs without Rudy Gay

    Feb 15, 2013, 6:27 PM EDT

    Zach Randolph

    When Rudy Gay was traded from Memphis to the Toronto Raptors, a lot of national pundits shook their head and said, “why would Memphis kill its title aspirations by trading its best player?” Those people didn’t watch a lot of Grizzlies basketball. It’s not that Gay isn’t a good player, look how he has helped…

  14. Michael Jordan beat Kidd-Gilchrist at one-on-one last month

    Feb 15, 2013, 5:39 PM EDT

    Michael Kidd-Gilchrist

    Turns out, Michael Jordan is still pretty good at the basketball thing. About a month ago Jordan, who turns 50 this weekend, challenged 19-year-old Michael Kidd-Gilchrist to a game of one-on-one after practice. Kidd-Gilchrist is the No. 2 pick of the Bobcats, the team Jordan owns. If I had to bet on that game (and…

  15. Report: Increasingly desperate Nets now eye J.J. Hickson

    Feb 15, 2013, 5:18 PM EDT

    J.J. Hickson

    General Manager Billy King really wants to get some help at the four spot for his Nets. Of course, that’s all about just helping his team out and has nothing to do with him being in the last year of his contact and his expensive team not impressing much. It’s not about saving his job.…

  16. Dallas Mavericks point guard Darren Collison wants to stick around long term

    Feb 15, 2013, 4:00 PM EDT

    Mavericks guard Collison drives past Thunder guard Westbrook in the first half of their NBA basketball game in Oklahoma City

    Darren Collison has not had an easy season. He was benched for Derek Fisher earlier in the year, despite the fact Fisher couldn’t actually move on the court. He’s been yanked off the court for guys like Mike James, and he’s survived the Roddy Beaubois experience. At no point has it looked like the Mavericks…

  17. Bledsoe, Thompson, lots of young stars idolize Vince Carter

    Feb 15, 2013, 3:54 PM EDT

    Vince Carter Raptors

    HOUSTON — When NBA All-Star Saturday Dunk Contest participant Eric Bledsoe was asked about his favorite dunk contest dunk he didn’t hesitate. “I think that dunk contest where Vince Carter did the 360,” Bledsoe said. That same answer came up over and over with young players — to them the legend of Michael Jordan or…

  18. Chris Bosh to start in place of Rajon Rondo in All-Star Game

    Feb 15, 2013, 3:28 PM EDT

    Miami Heat's Bosh descends after dunking in the first half of their NBA basketball game against Portland Trail Blazers in Miami, Florida

    HOUSTON — Eric Spoelstra takes his “positionless” basketball seriously. Given the choice for who would start for the injured Rajon Rondo in the All-Star Game Sunday, the Heat coach went with one of his own. And he knew from the start. “I decided when we beat Toronto and we clinched (back on Feb. 3)…” Spoelstra…

  19. Report: Raptors can trade Bargnani for Boozer “whenever they want”

    Feb 15, 2013, 1:30 PM EDT

    Chicago Bulls' Boozer reacts after being called for a foul in their NBA basketball game against the Boston Celtics in Boston

    The Bulls have been an over-performing, scrappy team this year. Though Derrick Rose has missed every game rehabilitating his surgically repaired knee and the team has suffered other injuries to key players like Luol Deng and Joakim Noah that’s forced them out of action for stretches, the Bulls currently possess the East’s 5th best record…

  20. Gary Payton, two-thirds of Run TMC lead Hall of Fame finalists

    Feb 15, 2013, 12:58 PM EDT

    Image (1) gpayton-thumb-250x375-13103.jpg for post 2389

    It’s time for The Glove to be in the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame. Gary Payton — one of the greatest point guards of his generation, a defensive force, a nine-time All-Star and the face of Seattle Sonics basketball (with all due respect to Jack Sikma) — is the leader of the finalists for the…

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