Yahoo's Adrian Wojnarowski: "'David Stern may first have to make a decision on Richardson's availability for Game 6. After Richardson's momentum carried him out of bounds late in the game, he found himself in the lap of a Dallas fan. They were briefly entangled, witnesses said, and Mavericks and NBA security interviewed the fan later for his side of the exchange. What team and league sources were told, according to two high-ranking league officials, was that Richardson said, 'Push me again, (expletive), and I'll beat your ass.' NBA security's Dwayne Bishop was on the telephone with the fan late Tuesday night in the arena dining room, apparently reaching the man after he had talked to Mavericks security. At the least, Richardson probably bought himself a fine. 'I can't remember (what he said) in the heat of the moment,' Richardson said of the fan. 'All I know is that I pushed him back, trying to see who he was. But it's over.'"
Michael Tillery interviews Scoop Jackson. Long, but interesting. Jackson: "If I reference Cooley High as opposed to Animal House, I'm being Black. If I say Barack Obama, instead of Ted Kennedy to make a point, then I'm being Black. If I use Ben Carson instead of mentioning Marcus Welby, then I'm being Black. If I put an apostrophe at the end of tryin' instead of trying, then I'm being Black."
Dwyane Wade on ... Jane Austen: "I've read Pride and Prejudice a couple of times. It's one of my favorite books, which usually surprises people. I guess they wonder how a love story from Regency England could be relevant to a 21st century basketball player from the Southside of Chicago. Class struggle, overcoming stereotypes and humble beginnings, getting out of your own way and letting love take over: these are things I can relate to, definitely. Reading the Classics is like opening a door to a world that at first looks so different from mine, but when I look closer, is filled with people who struggle with the same things I do. And the great thing is, they may be a little farther along in their struggle than I am, so I can actually learn something." That's from a Penguin website promoting classic literature. It occured to me that it might be a trumped up version of something he actually said, but the Heat's PR people tell me they recall him saying something along those lines at a Spring 2006 reading event.
The Akron Beacon-Journal's Brian Windhorst talks to Toronto's Luke Jackson: "Before the game we are talking courtside and the Nets Cliff Robinson comes out to take pregame shooting. Jackson, a Trail Blazer fan as a kid growing up in Oregon, smiles at me and says: 'I swear, I was the biggest Cliff Robinson fan when I was a kid. I used to pretend to be him when I played. I had a cup from Dairy Queen with his picture on it and I used to drink out of it every day.'"
John Hollinger writing for the New York Sun: "... when Colangelo took the job in February 2006, he agreed not to hire away any Suns personnel -- including assistant coach Marc Iavaroni, who was long rumored to be one of his favorite coaching candidates -- until the end of the 2006-07 season. So Colangelo was content to let Mitchell run the show until his preferred option became available." Hollinger says Mitchell may be the prize of the off-season. But man, the more people have watched this series, the more people tell me he has been outcoached in this series.
Ok, follow closely: ESPN's Andy Katz talked to Rick Barnes, who coached T.J. Ford at college in Texas. Katz says Barnes says he has talked to T.J. Ford's dad (somewhere in there this just stopped being journalism) who says T.J. is fine, should play in game six, and all x-rays were negative.
FreeDarko: "I'm glad Dirk found a tiny bit of musk there at the end."
ESPN Insider Chad Ford: "Joakim Noah slipped from No. 6 to No. 10 after a number of NBA decision makers with potential lottery picks said they had him slipping on their draft boards after a so-so junior season and NCAA tournament. Workouts could help his stock some ... but I think the big question will be the Phoenix Suns. A number of sources say the Suns are very high on Noah. If the Hawks don't get a Top 3 pick, their pick goes to Phoenix somewhere in the range between No. 4 and No. 6." Me? I'd take him. That Florida team had amazing chemistry, and it didn't happen randomly. He has long been obsessed with giving his teammates credit. You need guys like that to build a winning attitude.
The NBA angrily refutes the report that NBA referee's exhibit a racial bias in how they call games. Saying they have the data to prove the study wrong, but not sharing that data with the researches, strikes me as somewhere between obfuscation and insanity. This is about as serious a charge as could be leveled at the league. Trot out the data already. In any case, I think the NBA should take a different approach anyway -- the one that David Berri describes on his blog: "It is also important to emphasize the story the article is telling. This is not about the NBA. It is about implicit biases in decision-making. I think the reaction Professor Ayres had to the study captures where the Price-Wolfers study falls in the literature (quoting Alan Schwarz's New York Times article): 'I would be more surprised if it didn't exist,' Mr. Ayres said of an implicit association bias in the N.B.A. 'There's a growing consensus that a large proportion of racialized decisions is not driven by any conscious race discrimination, but that it is often just driven by unconscious, or subconscious, attitudes. When you force people to make snap decisions, they often can't keep themselves from subconsciously treating blacks different than whites, men different from women.' In sum, I do not think the Price-Wolfers study tells us that NBA referees are racists, or at least, they are not any more racist than anyone else. What it does tell us is that implicit biases exist and these biases can impact people's decision-making."
Rovell, on his CNBC blog: "The NBA called me last week and asked if they could make an avatar, or virtual character, of me so that I could attend a press conference in the Cisco Wireless Press Center in which David Stern's avatar would be giving a press conference about the NBA entering 'Second Life,' the new-age version of the life simulation games. ... I think it's a good move for the NBA as long as no one pulls their avatar's pants down in any of the NBA-branded areas. There have been many reports of rampant sex issues in the game. While Reebok and Adidas are in 'Second Life,' Nike is not, despite various reports that the shoe and apparel giant has been formally involved." This is Second Life. As someone who likes both my first life, and seeing the sun from time to time, this is not the thing for me.
How about the idea of Grant Hill back in Detroit? Blazers should get him.