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Oklahoma City Thunder

  1. LeBron James and a golden transformation

    Aug 12, 2012, 12:45 PM EDT

    Lebron James, Kobe Bryant, Kevin Durant, Tyson Chandler

    A year ago, LeBron James didn’t exist. After mourning in his house over the loss of the NBA Finals for several weeks, dealing with the way his entire world had been turned upside down, how the public had revolted against him, James was simply absent. He rarely made appearances if ever at the NBA-NBPA meetings…

  2. USA vs. Spain for the gold: We know how this is going to end

    Aug 11, 2012, 2:21 PM EDT

    US forward Carmelo Anthony (R) celebrate

    USA vs. Spain for the gold: We know how this is going to end. USA gold. Spain has some real talent — Pau Gasol and Marc Gasol team up to make what would be the best front line in the NBA (well, maybe not anymore) and they surround the brothers with smart, playmaking guards who…

  3. Westbrook suffers mild ankle sprain, will play in gold medal game

    Aug 11, 2012, 9:57 AM EDT

    Russell Westbrook

    UPDATE 9:56 am: Relax. Go back to drinking your morning coffee and not worry, Thunder and Team USA fans. The update on Westbrook is that he will go for Team USA Sunday in the gold medal game against Spain. Reports out of the Team USA camp are that he is “fine” and will play Sunday,…

  4. Great Argentina team loses final match against Team USA by 26 points, U.S. to play for gold Sunday

    Aug 10, 2012, 6:26 PM EDT

    Argentinian guard Emanuel Ginobili (R) c

    Let’s take a moment and applaud this Argentina team. Lead by Manu Ginobili, Luis Scola, and Andres Nocioni (no, really), this Argentina has battled for one another for a decade. They have been the biggest thorn in the side of the U.S. in international play, and were what prompted widespread changes in the U.S. approach…

  5. Shockingly, Kobe likes acquisition of Dwight Howard

    Aug 10, 2012, 1:03 PM EDT

    Dallas Mavericks v Los Angeles Lakers

    I would love to have been in the Team USA breakfast/meeting round Friday morning in London when Kobe Bryant walked in, walked right up to Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook and James Harden and did his best Matt Damon impression — “How do ya like them apples?” The Lakers got Dwight Howard as part of a…

  6. Did Orlando blow Dwight Howard trade? Too early to tell.

    Aug 10, 2012, 9:27 AM EDT

    Rob Hennigan

    With the Lakers, we’re going to know very quickly how this blockbuster four-team Dwight Howard trade worked — they are in win-now mode and with Dwight Howard it is possible for them. With the Sixers, we’ll know in a few years — Andrew Bynum gives them a true center (on several levels) for their young…

  7. Argentina may be tougher test for USA than gold medal game

    Aug 9, 2012, 5:06 PM EDT

    US guard Kobe Bryant (R) stands by Argen

    Argentina is not more talented on paper than the Spanish men’s national team in these Olympics. We can have a debate about Argentina vs. Russia but it’s close. But the Argentineans could pose a bigger threat to the United States’ gold medal hopes in the semi-finals on Friday than either Spain or Russia in a…

  8. Video: Just a reminder Rajon Rondo is pretty darn athletic

    Aug 9, 2012, 4:07 PM EDT

    Boston Celtics v Miami Heat - Game Seven

    When we talk about the most athletic young guards in the NBA right now you mention Russell Westbrook and Derrick Rose first and head down the list from there. We tend to leave Rajon Rondo off that list, maybe because we tend to think of the Celtics as an older and less athletic team. But…

  9. Report: There will be no age limit for 2016 Rio Olympics

    Aug 9, 2012, 12:53 PM EDT

    Lebron James, Kobe Bryant, Kevin Durant, Tyson Chandler

    FIBA is a beurocratic institution of the old-school order. The Olympics even more so. So it shouldn’t be a shock that the idea of change — turning the Olympic men’s basketball tournament into an under-23 event — is not something that is going to happen quickly. Meaning not by the games in Brazil in 2016,…

  10. USA starts pretty blah, Kobe and LeBron help them run away from Aussies late

    Aug 8, 2012, 7:48 PM EDT

    Australian guard Matt Dellavedova (L) ch

    There are certain boxers and MMA fighters that nobody looks fighting good against. Even the fighters with all the style get sucked into an ugly grappling contest, nobody looks pretty in the ring/octagon against these guys. That is Australian basketball. For three quarters against Team USA the Aussies were physical, they mucked up the game,…

  11. John Wall, Gilbert Arenas headline Goodman League Classic

    Aug 8, 2012, 12:40 PM EDT

    goodman John Wall

    Last summer was the “Summer of the Pro/Am” with locked out players taking park in games at the Drew League in L.A., the Goodman League in D.C. and Rucker Park in N.Y. in record numbers. This year, not going to be as much of that. But some stars are still doing events, and that includes…

  12. Rest of world not really thrilled with under-23 Olympics idea

    Aug 8, 2012, 9:20 AM EDT

    Nike Athletes Wear Their New Uniforms and Footwear For The London 2012 Olympic Games

    After the Olympics end the discussion of whether future games should follow the soccer model and be an under-23 event will grow louder. But a lot has to happen to pull it off. FIBA has to buy in. The elite players have to by in (they have the ultimate power because if the elite players…

  13. USA shouldn’t have much trouble with Australia to open medal round

    Aug 8, 2012, 8:01 AM EDT

    Kobe Bryant, Russell Westbrook,  Chris Paul

    The medal round. This is what we’ve been waiting for. When things get serious. Win and advance, lose and you go home. Three wins and you get a gold. The pressure is on now. Except, for the USA the first game of the medal round should be their easiest game in a week. The USA,…

  14. Pau Gasol on verge of tying legendary Olympics scoring record

    Aug 7, 2012, 6:35 PM EDT

    Pau Gasol

    When Brazilian basketball legend turned broadcaster Oscar Schmidt showed up for a Team USA practice, students of the game like Carmelo Anthony went up to him and asked if they could take a picture with him. Schmidt is an international legend. And he was the leading scorer in the Olympics in 1988, 1992 (more points…

  15. Carmelo got punched in the, um, groin by Argentina. But we’ve seen worse.

    Aug 7, 2012, 1:57 PM EDT

    Anthony of the U.S. grimaces on the court after being fouled during match against Argentina at their men's preliminary round Group A basketball match at the Basketball Arena during the London 2012 Olympic Games

    Things got a little testy… wait, poor choice of words. Things got a little chippy between the USA and Argentina at the end of the third quarter as the USA was running away with Monday’s Olympic pool play contest. (Yes, that’s better phrasing.) Carmelo Anthony was going up with a three as the quarter ended…

  16. James Harden says he is “pretty sure” he re-signs with Thunder

    Aug 7, 2012, 11:22 AM EDT

    U.S. Olympic basketball player Harden watches during a training session ahead of the London 2012 Olympic Games at the M.E.N Arena in Manchester

    The Oklahoma City Thunder have some serious salary cap issues to deal with in the future — Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook have their max extensions already, James Harden and Serge Ibaka are coming up. The Thunder need to save money somewhere. It’s not going to be with Harden. He is getting a max offer.…

  17. USA’s path to gold could feature rematch from 1972. Or 2008.

    Aug 7, 2012, 9:29 AM EDT

    US forward Carmelo Anthony (L)  and US f

    We have reached the medal round and if you look at the way the USA played the last two quarters against Argentina — pressure defense where they did not gamble, then LeBron James and Kevin Durant scoring — nobody can stop them. We’re just going to pretend the first two quarters didn’t happen. So what…

  18. Video: Russell Westbrook’s monster dunk all over Argentina

    Aug 6, 2012, 11:16 PM EDT

    Pity Juan Gutiérrez. He didn’t do anything wrong save be near the rim when Russell Westbrook decided to launch himself and put a monster throwdown on Argentina during the United States’ second half run to put the game away. This may well be the dunk of the Olympics, the kind of thing you should enjoy…

  19. Quick look at opening Olympic medal round games

    Aug 6, 2012, 10:26 PM EDT

    Olympics Day 10 - Basketball

    Finally, we are done with the “everyone gets to play” portion of Olympic basketball. Time to get on with it. Eight teams remain in the win-or-go home medal round tournament starting Wednesday. The matchups are set after Brazil knocked off Spain (with Spain sitting key players in the fourth) and a surprise that didn’t matter…

  20. USA plays one good half, that’s enough to beat Argentina handily

    Aug 6, 2012, 7:50 PM EDT

    London Olympics Basketball Men

    If the USA can play the next four games like they played the second half against Argentina, they will cruise to a gold medal. Let’s just forget about the six quarters before that, shall we? After a sloppy first half of the defensive end and a lot of three point shots, Team USA got it…

  21. Monday And-1 links: Photographic evidence of Celtics changes

    Aug 6, 2012, 6:35 PM EDT

    836283

    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 like Alex Morgan loves headers. • How much have the Celtics changed the roster?…

  22. J.R. Smith sounds like blog commenter, says Knicks are contenders

    Aug 6, 2012, 12:21 PM EDT

    New York Knicks guard J.R. Smith reacts after hitting a three-point shot against the Dallas Mavericks in the first half of their NBA basketball game at Madison Square Garden in New York

    There are some very thoughtful, basketball smart Knicks fans out there. As a whole they know the game. And then there are the Knicks fans who vastly overestimate how good their team really is and think the franchise is still thought of like it’s 1972. Apparently, J.R. Smith falls in the later group. The Knicks…

  23. Kobe Bryant says again he could finish career in Europe

    Aug 6, 2012, 10:40 AM EDT

    US basketball player Kobe Bryant reacts

    This is not a new refrain, but it doesn’t make it any more likely. Kobe Bryant has said again he might choose to end his career with a couple years in Europe after the NBA. This time he said it to Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports while both were in London for the Olympics. “It…

  24. USA’s defense, outside shooting needs to return vs. Argentina

    Aug 6, 2012, 8:40 AM EDT

    US forward LeBron James (L), guard Kobe

    Argentina is in some way a better version of the Lithuanian team that gave the USA trouble on Saturday — more talented but with that same experienced veteran savvy that exposed the American’s mistakes. But that’s really what Monday is about — has the USA learned from its mistakes as it heads to the medal…

  25. Kevin Garnett blocked from purchase of minority ownership in European soccer club

    Aug 5, 2012, 6:29 PM EDT

    Boston Celtics v Miami Heat - Game Seven

    LeBron James can, but Kevin Garnett can’t. And there are good reasons why not. KG wanted to buy a share in AS Roma, but the Boston Globe reports that Garnett was blocked from that bid. LeBron James is a minority owner in a club as well. The reason why one was legal and one was…

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