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Thursday Bullets

  • Memphis owner Michael Heisley tells 3 Shades of Blue about his team's decision to pick Hasheem Thabeet over Ricky Rubio: "So when we finally got together the last week or so and started going over everything we began to lean more and more toward Thabeet and away from Rubio. We think both of them will be great players. It really got down to, from our point of view, where we felt we needed the help the most. Now you normally don't try to draft for position unless it is a pretty even toss up between which ones you want. I would say that as we got closer and we felt it was a pretty even toss up and we leaned toward Thabeet, that the more we got into it but we sent four people, I believe it was four people, over to Spain to watch Rubio that last series personally that Rubio played in the Spanish league. We had our international guy, who's seen him play almost every game, come in and even he started swing toward Thabeet so it was unanimous. Everybody wanted Thabeet ahead of Rubio so that is how it came out. I loved all the comments I am getting because the point is, and I would ask some people -- that will remain nameless -- I asked if they had seen Rubio play? How many games have you seen? How many tapes have you watched? The answer? Virtually none! [They would say] I do remember the Olympics. Well their recollection of what happened in that Olympic game is extremely faulty. So quite bluntly I think everyone including newspaper reporters, fans, everybody should be voicing their opinions at the draft time. I think it is healthy. It is great support but in the end we have to make the choice based on the professionals that are spending a big portion of their lives doing nothing but looking at these players."

  • In a bad economy, cash is king. NBA Summer League in Las Vegas starts tomorrow, and unlike years' past, you can't watch for free online. It's $14.99 to see the 55 games.

  • Jason Kidd says he took the idea of playing in New York seriously. And he says he has never been dunked on.

  • Last summer the Nuggets lost Marcus Camby and nevertheless managed to dramatically improve. This summer, they're going to see how much better they can get losing Dahntay Jones.

  • Here's Ron Artest on video on WorldStarHipHop.com, saying some memorable things. For instance, he can't help but demonstrate some of that motivates him when he says he's "one of the most interesting guys in the league with the least amount of endorsements." He says that early in his career, "nobody else had a chance against Kobe except Ron Artest." In crunch time he won't have conflicted priorities: "That's simple: Get the ball to Kobe." And there's a funny line about his agent telling him to stop Tweeting insider secrets, because it was hurting his ability to get a good new contract. Artest says his response was basically: Yeah, but look at how many new Twitter followers I'm getting! And did you realize his new number has the potential for special meaning? The reverse of his 37 would be, as has been discussed, Dennis Rodman's number with the Lakers -- but also a new record number of wins for an NBA team in a regular season, topping the Bulls' 72-10 record.

  • Smart thoughts about how Allen Iverson would help or hurt the Bobcats. Believe it or not, he would be the team's fifth most efficient scorer.

  • Tim Varner of 48 Minutes of Hell: "Antonio McDyess is the best big to flank Tim Duncan since David Robinson. That's not hyperbole."

  • The new salary cap numbers contain hard lessons for Warrior fans. They could get Amare Stoudemire, have him opt out next summer, and still not have cap room to sign somebody.

  • Liveblogging the press conference introducing the new head coach in Detroit, where John Kuester jokes that his wife said he was her sixth choice, too.