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Wednesday Bullets

  • Troy Murphy is ready to spray tan you and he's certified. Wow, how do I love the Internet.

  • Ben Polk of A Wolf Among Wolves: "The Wolves approach NBA basketball with the anxious energy of a group of people about to do something really difficult that they don’t quite understand. They make the game look fast and chaotic and complicated. They achieve competence in mysterious, unpredictable bursts and then just as unpredictably regress back to their natural state of frenzied searching. But for the Lakers competence is the default setting. This is not to say that they always play well; they did, after all, recently lose to the Magic, Bobcats and Cavs in quick succession. But they play with a fluidity and simplicity that only talent, experience and a finely functioning group mind can produce. Above all, one gets the feeling that they have control over their level of play, that, given the right cocktail of motivation and attention, they could achieve a kind of transcendence at any moment of any game."

  • Jeff Fogle of HoopData: "Carmelo Anthony's right elbow 'issue' may start to become a bigger story. He was just 8 of 24 from the floor Tuesday night, including 1 of 5 from long range. That's 2 of 9 on treys the last two games. He's only hit 41 percent of his two point shots since joining the Knicks, well below past norms. Though, he did face three very strong defenses in his four games in Knickerbocker blue. The much discussed 'Carmelo effect' for increasing his teammates' shooting percentages hasn't shown up yet. Knicks not named Carmelo are 105-246 from the floor over the last four games for 42.6 percent. The caliber of defenses may be an influence obviously. Let's see what happens when the schedule softens."

  • Watch Quentin Richardson earn his paycheck guarding Carmelo Anthony.

  • The MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference starts Friday. It's sold out. You have some options, though. You can stay right here on TrueHoop, where we are planning a surprising amount of coverage. You can watch some of the conference on the web in real time. And you can also -- no, I won't stop pushing this -- still buy tickets for the unofficial after party.

  • The Bulls are talking with pride.

  • The state of Gilbert Arenas.

  • John Hollinger (Insider): "If the question is 'How do we get our offensive-minded, occasionally scatter-brained, rarely defending team to play smarter, defend better and do more of the little things?' then 'Sign Al Thornton' is most definitely NOT the answer."

  • The Sixers have been coming on strong lately, but missed an opportunity to beat the Mavericks last night. Evan Turner had a couple of bad moments, as described by Kevin Jones on Philadunkia: "It’s still early in the fourth quarter, about eight minutes left and Dallas is leading 85-82. After Iguodala corralled a loose ball, Evan Turner was streaking to the basket for what looked like an easy alley-oop opportunity…except the rookie bobbled the ball into the Mavericks hands. Don’t sweat it though, because no surprise, AI9 would pick Jose Barea’s pocket only this time he gave the ball to Turner early, knowing that the rookie would pass the rock back to him. What did ET decide to do this time? Sail the ball five feet over the backboard on what looked like an alley-oop attempt, but I can’t be so sure what the hell he was doing. Dirk then preceded to make a jumper giving the Mavs a five point cushion and more importantly run time on the clock. Huge opportunities wasted."

  • Jeremy Schmidt of Bucksketball: "A loss to the Pistons in early February seemed to signal the end of any serious playoff hopes the Bucks would have this season. This win, while satisfying as any other win, does little to change things in regard to the playoffs. It’s fun to see the Bucks win again, but the most substantial impact this game honestly has, is that it separates Milwaukee from Detroit with regard to the lottery picture. That’s the honest truth. Maybe it doesn’t matter all that much if a team is drafting 7, 8, 9 or 10, but chances got a little better, wherever the Bucks are drafting, it will be after the Pistons."

  • Smart Kings fans talk about efforts to keep their team in Sacramento. And a smart account of the state of things.

  • Phil Jackson says Ron Artest runs the triangle offense better than Kobe Bryant does. He's a rabble-rouser, for sure, but his point is that Bryant often ignores the offense, which is obvious.

  • "Gigantic, lazy, gifted, infantile, physical, unafraid, vision, anticipation, lost, clueless, different, agile." Some words that pop into David Thorpe's head (Insider) when he watches DeMarcus Cousins play.

  • A really honest attempt to make all this Charlie Sheen craziness somehow about the NBA.

  • Bench Rip Hamilton, and watch him shoot even more.

  • Mike Bibby is an upgrade over Carlos Arroyo, but about the same as Mario Chalmers, according to David Berri.

  • You thought trading Kendrick Perkins was hard for the Celtics. Here's a quick little movie about trading your son.

  • The sale of the Pistons takes another turn. Bill Davidson died, and that team just exploded into a series of soap operas.

  • Portland has been playing with a lot of energy for a long time. That has stopped.