Thursday Bullets

  • I have no idea if Nene is a good deal at $13 million or not. But I know that teams that wait for bargain big men with size and skill wait forever, and that teams without decent big men don't contend.

  • Sounds like the Blazers plan to assess Brandon Roy's health in training camp before making decisions about amnesty.

  • Lamar Odom on the trading block?

  • I'm glad that's settled. Turns out Shaquille O'Neal's tiny wife can, in fact, carry him on her back. She's up to the task, even if her high heels are not.

  • Reggie Evans is as good a rebounder as there is in the NBA, and he's poised to be an inexpensive free agent.

  • Of the players on this list, how could the Heat not go all-out for Delonte West?

  • Bacon daggers. When the lockout ended, in comic form.

  • If Kevin Love is dramatically lighter and more mobile, that could be awesome. A little vertical would do amazing things for a guy who's already a super elite rebounder.

  • Chad Ford and John Hollinger point out that the Pacers have plenty of young talent and a bright enough future. But nothing happens fast. Jared Wade of 8 points 9 seconds on how the Pacers have rebuilt to this point: "Bird just waited. And waited. And waited. Flash forward to now. When Larry Bird addressed the media this morning for the first time since the lockout ended as a GM swimming in cap space, what was his message? More patience."

  • On HoopSpeak, Joey Whelan has tales of the D-League draft: "In the time it takes the NBA to get through the first five selections, the D-League is already onto the second round. Teams have exactly 90 seconds to announce their choices on speakerphone to the rest of the league. Before there’s even enough time to debate over whether Jamaal Tinsley was the right call as the top overall pick over Alando Tucker (who has since bolted for Europe), we’re already onto pick No. 10 with Fort Wayne selecting Northern Arizona’s Cameron Jones. Following each NBA lottery pick, top prospects gleefully greet Stern on stage before being ushered off to a live interview on ESPN and then finally to a back room where they are swarmed by the media. Few things can compare to standing in a horde of French speaking reporters as Joakim Noah holds court. Even fewer to being the first journalist to ask a question in English in over 10 minutes as the rest of the circle turns and stares at you with looks that straddle annoyed and confused. In the D-League there are no calls on stage. There is no stage. Players learn their draft fate by tuning in to the league-wide phone conference via an inconsistent web stream, or by refreshing the draft headquarters page until new names pop up on screen. Justin Johnson, a third round selection of the Wizards out of NAIA power Concordia-Irvine, told me that he almost missed his selection because so many names popped up on screen at once following a click of the refresh button."

  • Add Robert Sarver to the Dan Gilbert club of owners who certainly don't want to be seen as having been CBA hawks. (Whether or not they were hawks depends on your definition.) By the way, I wonder if we'll ever hear an owner admit that they'd have preferred the lockout continue in the name of a better deal.

  • See you later today? Going to be on HoopSpeak Live at 3pm ET and in the flesh at Varsity Letters in Manhattan at 7:30 this evening.