Morning Shootaround — May 9



VIDEO: Daily Zap for games played May 8

NEWS OF THE MORNING

Report: Kobe wants a say in hiring of next Lakers coach | Wizards’ Wall eager for Game 3, redemption | Thunder: Griffin up to old tricks | Nets’ Williams missing when team needs him most

No. 1: Kobe wants a say in hiring of Lakers’ next coach: After years of suggesting that he didn’t want anything to do with the work being done by ownership and the front office, it appears that Kobe Bryant has warmed up to the idea of having some input on such matters. The Los Angeles Lakers superstar wants a say in who the franchise pursues and hires to replace Mike D’Antoni, according to Dave McMenamin of ESPNLosAngeles.com. That’s an abrupt departure from his public stance for years:

Kobe Bryant, speaking publicly for the first time since Mike D’Antoni resigned from the Los Angeles Lakers, expressed apathy about the turn of events while saying he would, though, like to have an active role in choosing a new coach.

“Honestly I didn’t care,” Bryant said Thursday during a guest appearance on “Jimmy Kimmel Live” when asked by Kimmel if he was “happy” that D’Antoni accepted a buyout of close to $2 million for next season rather than come back to coach the team.

“Mike was dealt a really bad hand in dealing with all the injuries that he had here,” Bryant said. “This is a tough place, man. If you’re not winning, you’re not going to survive, man.”

Bryant added that Magic Johnson‘s controversial tweet in which he celebrated D’Antoni’s departure reminded him of a scene out of “The Wizard of Oz.”

“The first thing I thought of was seeing the Munchkins on the Yellow Brick Road dancing and singing, ‘The Wicked Witch is dead,’ ” Bryant said. “When he tweeted that, that song just came to mind.”

Bryant hopes the Lakers will sing a different tune than they have in the past when it comes to consulting him about hiring their next coach.

“On the last two they didn’t,” Bryant said, referring to Mike Brown and D’Antoni, who both failed to endure the length of the initial contracts they signed with the Lakers before parting ways. “On the third one, I’m hoping they do.”

Taking over for a legend like Phil Jackson is never easy, of course. Bryant said he still speaks to Jackson “often” and expects the 11-time championship winning coach to transfer those results to his front-office role with the New York Knicks.

“I think he’ll do fantastic,” Bryant said. “Especially the more people say that he won’t be successful.”

Bryant had similar faith in the Lakers’ brass, endorsing the efforts by Jackson’s fiancée and Lakers president, Jeanie Buss, as well as her brother and Lakers executive vice president of player personnel, Jim Buss, in steering the franchise in the right direction.

“Jimmy and Jeanie both, they’re just really determined and excited about the possibilities of next season and rebuilding this and building on their father’s legacy and everything that he’s accomplished,” Bryant said. “And they’re taking the challenge extremely, extremely seriously. They’re both on the same page and they want nothing but excellence here, so I have no doubt that we’ll make it happen.”

 

***

No. 2: Wizards’ Wall eager for Game 3 and redemption: Washington Wizards All-Star point guard John Wall knows that the onus for his team’s mini-meltdown in Game 2 of their Eastern Conference semifinal series against Indiana rests squarely on his shoulders. He was the one who decided to take three straight 3-pointers late in a tight game. That’s why he’s anxious to get back on the court tonight, before a home crowd, for Game 3. Not only is it a critical moment for the Wizards if they are going to pull off yet another playoff upset, it provides Wall an opportunity to right what went wrong. Michael Lee of the Washington Post explains:

John Wall spent most of the flight home from Indiana late Wednesday night wrestling with regret.

Playing on a loop in Wall’s mind was the three-pointer he hurriedly shot with about two minutes remaining in the Washington Wizards’ Game 2 loss at the Indiana Pacers, immediately followed by the sight of Indiana guard George Hill ripping the ball away from him on an attempted drive in the waning seconds.

What Wall lamented the most, however, was that the chance to redeem himself wouldn’t come until Friday, when Washington’s Eastern Conference semifinal series with Indiana shifts to Verizon Center for Game 3 tied at one game apiece. To bide his time, the Wizards’ all-star guard did the next best thing — he arrived at Thursday’s practice an hour early and put up shots.

“I’ve been thinking about it all last night and today. The way I played and the way we didn’t play as a team and didn’t play the right way [on] defense,” Wall said of a game in which he had six points on 2-for-13 shooting. “That’s probably the worst game we played in the playoffs.”

The biggest difference between the first two games was Indiana’s Roy Hibbert, who followed his zero-point, zero-rebound performance in Game 1 with a season-high 28 points in Wednesday’s win. The play of the former Georgetown center both invigorated the Pacers and surprised the Wizards, who felt confident in their ability to neutralize the 7-foot-2 all-star following their Game 1 shutout.

“I think the first shot he took was kind of a lucky shot,” Wizards guard Andre Miller said. “That put him in a rhythm. He started to run the court a little bit. We saw on film where he kind of outran all of us and that showed him wanting the ball. He wanted to win and that rubbed off on the rest of the team.”

Wizards Coach Randy Wittman and his players felt they exuded a similar intensity Wednesday, which granted them several opportunities to win down the stretch despite shooting 5-for-21 from three-point territory and producing only one fast-break point. But Wittman said the urgency for the Wizards to dig themselves out of hole they’ve rarely fell into through seven playoff games led to a few regrettable decisions.

“I thought there was a couple instances there we were down three with a minute [and] 24 [seconds remaining] and we played those possessions like there was 10 seconds left,” Wittman said. “It almost felt like desperation on a couple of those possessions we got an offensive rebound on.”

***

No. 3: Thunder: Clippers Griffin up to his old tricks: – You had to know it was coming after all of the arm wrestling and line dancing that went on in Game 2 of the Thunder-Clippers Western Conference semifinal series. Blake Griffin and Steven Adams got tangled up all night long and they weren’t the only ones. But both have a reputation for getting involved in all sorts of trivial foolishness within a particular game. The Thunder, of course, are blaming it on Griffin. Darnell Mayberry of the Oklahoman has more:

Blake Griffin is back to his old tricks, mucking up games with annoying antics that have little to do with basketball. His exploits thus far against the Thunder have been more effective than his play.

The Los Angeles Clippers forward already has gotten into multiple mild altercations with Thunder players that have threatened to turn a series that should be an offensive shootout into a slugfest and a beloved hometown kid into a villain.

Seven technical fouls have been issued through two games, and Griffin, despite being at the center of several confrontations, has walked away each time smiling, scot-free.

As the Thunder prepares for Game 3 against the Clippers on Friday night, OKC is getting a sampling of how Griffin gets the best of opponents in a different way.

In Game 1, Griffin suckered Serge Ibaka into a technical foul when he snared Ibaka’s foot while lying on his backside. After taking exception to Griffin’s subtle but strategic ploy, Ibaka attempted to separate his foot by kicking it away from Griffin’s ankles. The nearby official, of course, didn’t catch Griffin intentionally bring his feet together to trap Ibaka. But he did see Ibaka angrily kick his foot away, an action that resulted in a technical foul.

“I was just laying on the ground, and he just kind of kicked me,” Griffin sheepishly explained when asked about the incident after the game.

Griffin tried to conceal a guilty smile. Too late. He was busted.

It’s calculated run-ins such as these that prevent Griffin from becoming a full-blown league darling. His popular Kia commercials might endear him to casual fans, but the most ardent observers see him for something else, a player who baits opponents into reactionary actions while pretending to be oblivious to why he’s a target once the referee turns his attention to the situation.

It’s a strategy that has tainted Griffin’s remarkable basketball ability in NBA circles and turned him into one of the most loathed players in the league.

Griffin, perhaps smartly, doesn’t seem to care.

In Game 2 on Wednesday night, Griffin got tangled up with Steven Adams, the Thunder rookie center who has a growing reputation as an agitator. It was Griffin, however, who got the benefit of the doubt from officials each time the two got tangled.

Griffin’s actions went a long way in Adams being whistled for three fouls in 17 minutes. The most laughable came as Adams transitioned down the court and Griffin intentionally slowed up and allowed Adams to run into him.

But the Thunder might just have to play through the small stuff for the rest of the series.

Griffin is simply doing what he’s supposed to do. He’s searching for any advantage he can against the Thunder. He’s using trivial tactics to get inside his defender’s head. And, to this point, it’s worked. Thunder players have been taken to task by the officials while Griffin walks away without consequence.

It’s been Griffin’s most effective strategy.

***

No. 4: Brooklyn’s Williams comes up empty when Nets need him most: Deron Williams is supposed to be the face of the franchise in Brooklyn, the catalyst for a team that was supposed to challenge for a championship this season. But he came up woefully short in Game 2 against the Miami Heat Thursday night. In fact, he came up empty, missing all nine of his shots from the floor. It couldn’t have come at a worse time for the Nets, who were in the game until the very end. Mitch Lawrence of the New York Daily News on the Nets’ invisible man:

History tells us this series is over. The Nets might still win a game. But they don’t have what it takes to win a playoff series against the Miami Heat.

Their problems start, guess where? With the guy who is their most important player.

What a bad night for this to happen, but Deron Williams had his first scoreless playoff game of his career and it was the main story coming out of his team’s 94-82 loss to the two-time defending champs.

Williams’ line on Thursday night was awful: Thirty-six minutes. Nine shots. No makes. And no trips to the foul line. Yes, he had six assists and seven boards. But that was merely silver lining stuff.

If he had been a factor with his shooting and was able to give the Nets his usual 17 points he averaged in their eight previous playoff games, this series could perhaps be tied at 1-1.

But how can anyone look at him as a star when he walked off the American Airlines Arena floor with a goose egg in his 60th playoff game. Sure, Kevin Garnett failed to score in Game 1, but this is an entirely different situation.

Garnett is no better than the No. 4 option in the Nets’ offense, if even that. Williams is No. 2 to Joe Johnson, but is still looked at as the guy who makes the Nets go. Or stop.

Afterward in the locker room, someone asked Williams if this night will be tough to deal with.

“I’ll definitely be thinking about it,” he said.

***

SOME RANDOM HEADLINES: The Sterling family will not be going away quietly … Surprise, surprise, George Karl is interested in getting back into the coaching ranks … Warriors front office and players split on Steve Kerr? … Mark Jackson  should have plenty of options, both on and off the court  Toronto Raptors GM Masai Ujiri delivers some powerful words about the atrocities going on in his homeland … Down 2-0, it’s fight or flight time for the Trail Blazers.

ICYMI OF THE NIGHT: Kawhi Leonard went slap off in the Spurs’ Game 2 win over Portland, making it clear that the future of the franchise is already in place in San Antonio …


VIDEO: Kawhi Leonard was unstoppable in the Spurs’ Game 2 win over the Portland Trail Blazers

 

73 Comments

  1. jfack says:

    glad someone else noticed. i was noticing this stuff from grif too and that he is kind of a flopper. throwing his head back all the time like he got hit when nobody touches him. sigh i hate floppers. i hate playing against floppers esepecially!

  2. surfpick says:

    There is nothing wrong with slowing down & letting a dumber player run into you.

  3. Brian IE says:

    BIG BAD #KAWHILEONARD!!!! NO antics for my boy, just some NASTY Skills!! GET SOME!!

    #GoSpursGO!!

  4. Wesley says:

    Attention Jeanie and Jim Buss!!!!!!
    After the Nets lose to the Miami Heat. They will blame it on Pierce and KG.
    Lakers should sign Piece and KG. Remember Pierce is from LA and KG will likely go where Pierce goes.
    Imagine a line up of
    C KG
    PF Gasol
    SF Pierce
    SG Kobe
    PG Nash
    Reserves
    C Kaman
    F Hill
    F Young
    G Meeks
    G Marshall
    Showtime will be back in LA!!!!!!!

  5. spiderwaffle says:

    but the most ardent observers see him for something else, a player who baits opponents into reactionary actions while pretending to be oblivious to why he’s a target once the referee turns his attention to the situation.”

    While the keen and empathetic observers, even more so than those “most ardent”, see him as an intelligent composed savant among menial thugs. Blake possesses an overwhelming and distinct advantage in this department, thus he is only being apt in using it to great advantage; furthermore, the league is still ripe for a mockery of exploitation of it’s officiating system. This hearkens back to when Stockton, Malone and the Utah Jazz would mandatory visiting an acting camp in the off season to practice such antics.

    The league has no in game penalty for “flopping” antics like other leagues such as personal and technical fouls; thus you would be doing yourself and your team a great disservice to make make use of the situation while opponents are reaping the rewards of gaming the flawed system.

    Blake is not the mockery, the would be stand up comic and comedian sees the stage for what it is, a joke, he gets the joke and he’s the stand out star joke teller among the hacks and slap stick thugs.

  6. Mark says:

    If they start calling offensive fouls on Blake he’ll be terrible. He pushes off and also holds down the defender with his off arm on dunks. He ducks his head and dips his shoulder to create space that’s not a basketball move. The NBA creates its own superstars. Blake does not have superstar talent they just refuse to call offensive fouls on him.

  7. Mark says:

    Westbrook dominates Paul and Parker when they go head to head. Game one Paul did great, but Westbrook has been more dynamic in this series than Paul hints 2-1 Thunder. Spurs has had the easier road thus far. The Grizz would beat the Mavs and the Clippers would beat the Blazer. The Thunder will play and beat the heat this time.

  8. Mark says:

    The Thunder was crushing Memphis before Randolph threw a stupid punch at Adams. It would of have been a bigger blow out in game 7 if Randolph played, because Memphis’s offense slows down when Randolph is in the line up. The final two games the refs didn’t allow Allen to hold Durant and it showed.

  9. patrickmarc says:

    Blake can’t go further with that kind of comedy.
    Mister technical fault. I am afraid he will turn crazy next match,
    but not with Jordan, he is too big.

  10. jg says:

    griffin is so damn annoying to watch.

  11. Jay says:

    Please, Blake was abused by the league until this year… what comes around goes around.

  12. OKC says:

    What’s that clippers fans? OKC is going to lose both of the games in LA? Just face it, we are a terrible match up for the blakers. Ibaka neutralizes Blake and when Westbrook wants to go over screen CP3 is not a problem and at the other end you have no one to guard KD or Westbrook… BBQ chicken baby!

  13. Kobe’s statement that he should be consulted on who becomes the next Laker coach goes a long way to explain why the Lakers are a lost organization. Perhaps if he was willing to give back some of his salary to bring in some new players, I could respect the guy. Several players on other teams have taken less than their worth in an effort to build a real program. The Spurs jump out in my mind, but I know there are others too. I live in the L.A. area, but I can’t support a team so full of arrogance that they can’t see the obvious. Kobe is emblematic of a team attempting to buy championships instead of working for them. I don’t understand how you Laker fans can continue to support that organization. Is it that whole phony Hollywood image? Do you feel like a star when you’re wearing your hundred dollar jersey? I much prefer to follow the small market teams. I cheer for anyone BUT the Lakers, Heat, Nets, or Knicks. It’s poetic justice watching as the Lakers and Knicks fail to even make the playoffs.

  14. Fufos says:

    What Griffin and Adams are doing is pretty much normal. Trying to win a psychological battle. Whiners are people that are against this.

  15. okc2014 says:

    Hey! Knock it off! Steven Adams is not a dirty player! Russell Westbrook and Kevin Durant are not crybabies! Stop drinking haterade! It makes you look like a monkey who drank vinegar, which is not a good look! LOL. OKC2014.

  16. GO PACERS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  17. James Ratajczak says:

    I think the San Antonio Spurs are right now the best team in the playoffs and should be favored to win it all. They have completely dominated the Blazers. The Heat just look old to me. They are not even close to what they used to be.
    Go Spurs!

  18. Bball Fan says:

    Dear Oklahoman writer,

    Why don’t you mention Sir Perkins and his sitting on Mike Miller during round 1…those weren’t antics at all, were they…I love how Blak gets under everybody’s skin. First, it was his, albeit warranted, overrated status. This year, he shut all of his critics up with a drastic improvement in his all around game so now, the haters whine and complain about his flopping and antics, which are rampant throughout the league. Get over it!

  19. lakerslakerslakers says:

    maybe the nba will find a way to suspend griffin so their darling okc can advance, just like the memphis series.

  20. JOhn says:

    So many Clipper bitter. hand down CP3 and Matt Barnes won’t be able to shoot three like the first game. KD and RW get hot together Clipper get no chances. I like Griffin but common you can not expect Steven Adam to just back down from Griffin. How many rookies are willing to take a chance to get beat up like that….???

  21. Mike says:

    Funny OKC is complaining about instigators when Steve Adams is on their team. Biggest instigator in the league.

    Zach Randolph gets thrown out of game 7 and now I have to read this.

    PACERS#

    BLUE&GOLD

  22. jmm says:

    Spurs fan here. I love what Blake Griffin does on the court. I love watching his powerhouse dunks and I love watching him get under the skin of other players. One way of looking at it is from the psychological side. All sports have the psychological side. Pedro Martinez says as much in the 10th. inning of the Ken Burns Baseball documentary. He says, “You can’t hit the curve ball? I’m sorry for you but, your going to see it gain!” The same is true of Griffins antics; your gonna see it again. Then there is the fact that these guys have been working their entire lives to win an NBA championship. They’ll do anything to get the upper hand. This is why a 20 year window of baseball history is completely tainted and why the cycling world was brought to it’s knees. “I take this pill and I get better? Cool!” Then there is simply the fact that villains exist in the sports world. I think there are god villains and bad villains. There are people like Tayna Harding, Ty Cobb and Terrell Owens who clearly put a bad taste in everyone’s mouths but there is also Bruce Bowen, Robert Horry, Pedro Martinez, and Chris Carter who’s villainy is entertaining, and doesn’t really hurt anyone save the time Horry broke Steve Nash’s nose. Blake is a good villain! It’s great to see a player throw another player off his or her game just by talking or giving an annoying little nudge. As long as your not trying to hurt another player – more power to you. that last statement doesn’t apply to hockey! It just doesn’t

    • SharpieOne says:

      You missed another “good villain”, or at least a good villain to me. Like Horry and Bowen he too played for the Spurs for part of his career, and was definitely great at what he did, Dennis Rodman.

  23. AE3D says:

    Darnell Mayberry of the Oklahoman this is a garbage article. state facts please… unbiased ones. Steve Adams should be wathed closely. matter fact put a mic on him during the game.

  24. AE3D says:

    Darnell Mayberry of the Oklahoman TAKE A HIKE!

  25. Micah says:

    Looks like Blake is learning from Doc Rivers dirty ways

  26. BluesGypsy says:

    ‘da Flyin’ Lion [Blake Griffin] needs to show more leadership & play alot better if the LA Clippers are gonna advance past OKC… he is simply not playing like one of the top 5 players in the league so far in this Western Conference Semi-Finals !

  27. OKC says:

    I’m fine with Blake using every advantage he can get, he needs it considering his terrible shooting % with Ibaka on him lol.

  28. OKC says:

    The third best player in the league isn’t Blake Griffin, it’s Russell Westbrook.

    • Peter says:

      HAHAHAHA that’s hilarious!

      At least you OKC fans have a sense of humour!

    • SharpieOne says:

      LMAO. Russell Westbrook isn’t even the a top 3 PG, so how could he be the 3rd best player in the league?

    • Sonic says:

      Neither. Obviously KD and LeBron take top two. I won’t argue which is top. I think Tony Parker and Chris Paul are still better than Westbrook. And I would take Aldrige over Griffin. But I will admit I don’t really care for the guy either (Griffin). Westbrook is still a bad decision maker. He needs to mature and put the needs of his team over his desire to outperform the opposing point guard.

  29. Perhaps Darnell Mayberry of the Oklahoman should view the tape of Ibaka punching Griffin in the man region. What did the NBA do about that? Nothing.

  30. wak9 says:

    Kobe should just be the coach. lol that would be kinda cool to have a player who was head coach lol

  31. From an says:

    I love how mad you are at Griffin’s antics, and then hint at but fail to say that the Thunder players are stupid enough to fall for it. You said it, he has not received a technical, and it’s working. Write about something meaningful. This section was obviously fluff to fill a quota.

  32. Poster, Original says:

    Maybe the whole state of Oklahoma should listen to “Cry me a river” by Justin Timberlake from now until tipoff. Blake is an Oklahoman. Check your privilege.

    • Peter says:

      I have to agree. This is why I hate OKC so much as a team- they are seriously the biggest bunch of whiners in the entire league outside of maybe Miami.

      KD and Westbrook are whiney mommas boys who cry about everything, instead of dealing with things the right way and using it as motivation to win games. That’s why KD will probably never win a title – he’s all about getting his own stats, and as long as he gets 40 it doesn’t matter if his team wins of it it takes him 40 shots to get it.

      Sadly those two guys are the face of the franchise, so they make the entire franchise look like a bunch of whiney housewives.

  33. Lucky Star says:

    Steven Adams is probably the best instigator in the NBA. That’s a big part of what’s gotten the rook on the floor for the Thunder.

    • Mike says:

      I bet OKC’s plan was to get that Memphis guy riled so he’d get thrown out of game seven. If somebody gets hit in the face and barely flinches…. they knew it was coming. That is such a cheap move and MAYBE why OKC is in the 2nd round. Steve Adams doesn’t play basketball, all he does is annoy people.

      PACERS#

  34. TTKIN says:

    Is it a surprise that Griffin isn’t getting the technical fouls? The NBA protects its superstars. Same reason Lebron is able to go 6 straight games without picking up a single foul

  35. nba says:

    Where is all the Nets fans talking trash now? I didn’t think so..

  36. Laker Fan says:

    Simple solution Kobe! Retire from basketball, join the executive team and hire the coach. The team would have a bunch of money to rebuild and you would have free rain on the coach….just saying

  37. I8A4RE says:

    Blake’s antics? Welcome to the world of power forwards, old school 4s, author is still bitter they got nothing for harden.

  38. lakers says:

    time and time again I have said DWILL is just an average NBA POINT GUARD…crunch time he just doesn’t show up…

  39. jeff@gmail.com says:

    vince carter wanted to fight steven adams too

  40. No X factor for the Nets, they cannot go any further. Plenty of good players but no great players and it’s all the difference between them and the Heat.

  41. The main problem of the Nets: they don’t have a x- factor on whom they can count on. Jo is not so explosive, D will not sharp enough and Pierce only look back to his heyday at a Celtic. Down the stretch they cannot deliver , the Raptors have prove that …and the task will be so easy for LeBron and his squad…

  42. RYAN says:

    HAHAHAA that article on Griffin is foolish. GO get em Clips!

  43. jeff@gmail.com says:

    woah woah why so one sided against blake griffin. Zack randolph punch steven adams and wanted to fight him. Nate robinson wanted to fight steven adams. Some other dude i forget his name wanted to fight steven adams. seriously steven adams is a trouble maker. and he foul chris paul after the whistle. Steven adams aint making to many friends his rookie year

  44. graham says:

    Steven Adams is the biggest agitator, schemer in the league. Got Z-Bo for the Grizz suspended for Game 7 vs OKC

  45. HEATSWAG says:

    D WILL needs to pair up with King James to get rid of his shooting woes and achieve 8 rings and greatness.

    • Peter says:

      Heat fans, please get lost with your constantly rediculous “lets sign player X who is on max contract” garbage. If you were a true fan you should know that Miami is way over the cap and can’t sign anybody above the MLE…to give it up!

  46. FakeBlake says:

    Refs need to watch Griffin more closely. There should be zero tolerance for dirty players like that.

    • Common Sense says:

      Although i respect everyones right to an opinion, i must say, that if Griffin is doing something wrong, so is the entire league. And by the way, he’s not a dirty player. Steven Adams would be considered a dirty player, because he is only on the floor to instigate. Griffin only annoys people on the side of dominating the game, the way the playoffs SHOULD be played. Ask Barkley who now actually respects the man…

  47. Miguel Bordalo says:

    Is the Oklahoman that jornal that called Durant the Unreliable? I’m guessing this is overcompensating… as Griffin is well recieved by Oklahoma city fans even.

    • Common Sense says:

      Well said, and even if it isn’t the same guy, the whole media needs to over compensate for saying that to the MVP. They’ll never be able to let that one lay, big mistake.

  48. Lip Show says:

    Of course the writer of the “oklahomian” is gonna be biased. They almost got knocked out by the 2nd lowest seed in the playoffs. Now they gotta deal with CP3 and the Blakers? Good night. It’s just pre-emptive crying with yet another early playoff exit.

  49. Rob says:

    You may talk about Blake Griffin’s “antics” but he seems to get more physical abuse than anyone in the league right now. Perhaps he should have been given technicals in the examples given, but, if there was a stat for the most unwarrented technicals in the season his name would be top of the list.

    I wouldn’t say Deron Williams is the face of the Brooklyn Nets. He is a face of the franchise but this is a franchise who doesn’t really have a single franchise player.

  50. Common Sense says:

    I like the Oklahoma article:) It’s like every other die hard fan that complains about every ref call on the planet. EVERY FORWARD PLAYER DOES THIS. Slowing down the court to get run over, it’s what everyone does. And the reality of this situation is this. Only the GOOD players can do their job and do a couple little things to antagonize the other team. Watch Z Bo, Gasol, Ibaka, Perkins, etc, etc, they all stick feet out, hold jerseys, swing elbows, and it’s always on accident:)
    Oklahoma has a fan writing articles and it’s obvious. Let them play basketball and stop saying things aren’t basketball plays, you obviously are biased or haven’t watched playoff basketball before

  51. None of the above says:

    Kobe Bryant seems to think everything has to be all about him. He is just a player, nothing more and should not be consulted on any hiring or firing. If he was to be consulted or involved in the hiring of a new coach then so should the rest of the roster.

    • Bdiddy21 says:

      ??? Kobe is if not the greatest but in the top 2 greatest players to ever put on a lakers uniform i mean the front office still goes to Magic for advice why not your reigning superstar? If jim buss were still alive then id say no they shouldnt include him but with the way jeanie and jerry are running the team they could use all the help they can get

  52. pKone says:

    As for Griffin being an agitator,

    The author of that piece in the Oklahoman does a good job at trying not to sound like sour grapes, but it still comes off that way. I am a Raptors fan and I am very familiar this series with big names getting the benefit of the doubt (Garnett, Pierce, Williams etc…) but OKC has enough of their own big names getting charity-star calls, so watch the stones ;)

    On the topic of Kevin Garnett, if Griffon keeps up his ways of being a tough, talented agitator, then he runs the risk of being just like KG!

    GASP!

    Wouldn’t he hate that? ;)

  53. Game Time says:

    Reading that bias garbage from Oklahoman makes me anxious to see the Clippers beat down OKC and yes they will do that tonight.

  54. Eaham says:

    Derron Williams is not living up to the huge contract Brooklyn gave him. If you play this sub-par without injuries (Which he always is: injured!) then you should say more than “I’ll definately be thinking about it”. The Nets goofed bad by getting all these old players around D-Will and JoWaste their primes by surrounding them with players on their twilight seasons. And at this point Robin lopez looks like the better player who can actually stay on the court wihtout injuring himself every season. Brook lopez is looking like another Ya Ming case, shut it down big fella, go home. Nets are gonna waste D-Will and Joe’s prime on scrub years.

  55. taylor says:

    “It’s a strategy that has tainted Griffin’s remarkable basketball ability in NBA circles and turned him into one of the most loathed players in the league.”

    Not so sure about that one….

    • ImJusSayin says:

      Are you kidding Adams is walking dirt, and who nailed who in the nuts? Common be real ibaka and adams are top 10 dirty players and perk is right up there Griffin just learned to play their game.

  56. Erlo says:

    Kevin Durant had a great year, but I still think the most valuable player in the league should get the award. Everyone knows who the most valuable player in the league is right now, hands down. It’s not Durant.

  57. Kobe wants a say in everything…. Son just try to get back in shape & play bball. U were horrible when u came back. So u have other stuff to concentrate on.

    Blake aiaiaiaai u are playing with fire. There was alreay on ya in the regular season. U want to get hunted inthe playoffs too? I would say GO OKC, get him!!