Basketball-Reference has schedule adjusted rankings showing that the Bulls have, by far, the NBA's best defense. The Celtics, Bucks, Hornets, Heat and Magic are next on the list. On the basis of this alone, I think you can confidently say Tom Thibodeau was a good hire for the Bulls. That's what he was hired to do! Now, about that boring, Derrick Rose-dominant offense last night ... this was one of the Bulls' easiest looks.
Thought from 30,000 feet: If for personal reasons Anthony is just dying to play for the Knicks, even at a reduced rate ... who's against that? The CBA makes strange things happen sometimes. Anyone I know who is just crystal clear on what they want to do, my impulse is: Do it! Life doesn't have to be so complicated.
More talk about contraction, this time from a Laker executive on the labor relations committee. The Laker matter a ton here: With revenue sharing, they'd be paying the bills of those money-losing teams. (Via Pro Basketball Talk)
Highlights of the first half of the Celtics' season. Watch Glen Davis dive!
Great little video recap of Kobe Bryant's senior high-school season.
Monta Ellis and Stephen Curry are potentially available. Warriors' owner Joe Lacob talked to Ethan Sherwood Strauss: "We need to get better, clearly, defensively. And that may involve some personnel changes over time. Specifically to that backcourt? We’re just going to have to wait and see. Who knows? I can’t tell you that anybody won’t be traded if the right deal came along. So I’m not going to sit here and tell you, 'They’re definitely going to be here all year!' We don’t know that. But we’re going to look at it and see how it works at the end of the year." Lacob also made clear he would NOT be OK with an NBA team relocating to San Jose.
A lot of NBA talk is about rich people acting like jerks. Here's some research showing that being rich might actually make you into a jerk.
I once had an NBA agent tell me that the most underpaid guard in the league was Rip Hamilton. Back then he was tearing it up. The Pistons rewarded him with a fat extension, and he's sure not underpaid anymore.
Dwyane Wade and LeBron James, on the court together without Chris Bosh, have been pretty bad.
Lou Williams loves to shoot the ball, and maybe should do a little less of that.
Josh Smith is shooting better than ever, but his efficiency is down, because he's taking more long shots.
Erik Spoelstra has high praise for the way Doc Rivers draws things up in crunch time.
Blake Griffin's magic is weaker on defense. It is exceedingly rare for very young NBA players to be great defenders. I'm sure this helps to explain why the NBA's oldest teams win so much, even as the most productive players, by offense-heavy metrics, are much younger.
Tyrus Thomas had a season going where he was playing beautifully, but not getting all that many minutes. Then the minutes seemed to be coming, and ... he gets injured. Tough game. Although, for what it's worth, the Bobcats say his surgery today was a success.