Darren Rovell of CNBC: "Tomorrow, columnists are going to write about how Dolan has to fire Isiah to avoid a marketing disaster or maybe even protests in front of the Garden. Those reporters need to make sure they understand the business reality. It would be nice if fans really cared about a hostile and unfair work environment. They do not. It would be nice if they cared about the character of their coach. They do not. Trust me. The Knicks attendance at the end of the season will be directly related to how they play on the court. And if they win 50, the Knicks will be selling out again."
Alan Hahn of Newsday: "My NBA connections maintain that the league will not impose any supplemental discipline on Isiah or Dolan, mainly because it is a civil trial, not a criminal case."
Fu-Schnickens and Shaquille O'Neal, from the archives. Especially worth noting: the slow-motion block, from his college days, about the 2:15 mark. By this point, I have practically forgotten that O'Neal used to get his hand up there about as high as anybody. And, O'Neal says he has been ultimate fighting.
Ira Winderman of the Sun-Sentinel on Shaquille O'Neal: "'He's got more flexibility than I ever think he had,' coach Pat Riley said of the 35-year-old center. 'He killed his conditioning test. As a matter of fact, he did more than he should have on his conditioning test.' O'Neal said he has no plans to limit his regular-season exposure. 'Hopefully I could maintain myself where I don't miss any games,' he said. 'But the object is still all about winning. If I play 82 games, go injury free and we don't win, it doesn't matter anyway.'"
Dandy little video report from media day by the Salt Lake Tribune. There's mild evidence of some soul-searching by Jerry Sloan, which is, you know, not nothing. And the case that Andrei Kirilenko owes the media a better explanation. Not encouraging.
Robert Swift says he has gained 40 pounds in a year. That means he gained, like, one grade-school-aged child. Or, to put it another way, he could be nine months pregnant and have gained much less. Can that be good in the long run?
Ben Wallace is once again allowed to wear a headband.
Brad Miller has lost weight, and, like Marcus Camby, spent a lot of the summer catering to the needs of a very premature infant.
David Berri of the Wages of Wins on Gilbert Arenas and Berri's Wins Produced statistic: "An average player in the NBA posts a WP48 of 0.100. If everyone on your team posted a mark of 0.100, you would win 41 games. If everyone on your team posts a mark of 0.157, which Gilbert Arenas did in 2005-06, the team would win close to 65 games. Unfortunately, if 0.157 is the mark of your best player -- which it was for the Wizards in 2005-06 -- you really have very little chance of coming close to 60 wins."
Jarrett Jack earned a parking place for himself at the Blazers' practice facility by showing up at the Blazers' practice facility for more off-season workouts than anybody else. It's an idea stolen from the New England Patriots, where Tom Brady always wins.
Tattoo of praying hands, holding a pistol. Welcome to Stephen Jackson's chest.
Allen Iverson and his friends, helping some people who had a car accident.
They won't be quoting T.J. Ford in the Venice tourism brochure. Dave Feschuk of the Toronto Star reports: "When T.J. Ford got word that the Raptors would be skipping their usual afternoon workout today and embarking on a tour of Venice's canals and cathedrals, he appeared unenthused. 'I'm not adventurous,' he said. 'If I never leave Texas, I'm cool with that.'"
Mark Cuban's mambo is, to my untrained eye, good. That's hard work! But the facial close-up is not his friend. He has an exaggerated "FUN TIME" that is creepy paired with the strained expression in his eyes (that matches up with his obsessive will to win, that we learn about in the introduction). Also, don't you wish he could do a more natural job of directing attention to his partner Kym? The male celebrities have a big advantage: they're dancing with stunners who dance for a living. Cuban does it a little, "ain't she great" stuff, but it seems like he really wants everyone looking at him.
Cavalier Attitude's John Krolik with some bold words about agent Dan Fegan: "With the possible exception of Jason Terry, not one team has signed a long-term deal with a Fegan client and ended up happy about it when the deal was up. Not one." I don't know if that's true, but I certainly do think that there's such a thing as
getting your clients too much money. Ask Steve Francis. I'll bet you anything this year -- playing where he's wanted for the first time in a long time -- will be the most fun he's had on the court in a long time.
Allan Houston, as of late yesterday, was still waiting for his third child to arrive (it's past due) before addressing where he'd play.
Baron Davis sounds, and reportedly looks, ready to play. Huge news for the Warriors.