Late Friday Mini-Bullets

  • The NBA asks bench players to stay seated, for the sake of fans behind them, unless something really stellar happens.

  • Sports Illustrated's Chris Ballard visited San Quentin to play basketball against the locals. The ending of the article is absolutely brilliant. But the start is scary: "As the inaugural opponents for San Quentin's over-40 squad, an element of the prison's outreach program, we had received the following warnings before our first visit: stay bunched together at all times, give only first names and run only when on the court because, as hoops coordinator Stephen Irwin, told us, 'Otherwise the guards will think you're a prisoner making a break for it, and trust me, you don't want that.' We knew about the three gun towers and the ratio of one armed guard for every four inmates but most of all about the 'no hostage' policy, which we were reminded of often and which was helpfully summarized by a prison employee as: 'If one of them grabs one of you, ain't s--- we can do about it.' In other words, no one made you come in here (and further, and more graphically, if a prisoner is holding both you and a weapon, the guards will shoot through you to get to the prisoner)."

  • A Laker fan at The Second Coming, to Ron Artest: "Let me be absolutely clear: you absolutely cannot mess this season up. You fail here, and you will never redeem your career again. You ruin this good thing we have going in LA, and the rest of your basketball days will be tarnished by it. In LA, we fans run deep. We know our basketball, we know our history, and we have more than a passing interest in the Lake Show. We will be here longer than you. We have more influence than you. Win us over, and you will be a Hall of Famer. Lose our faith, and you will never see this level of love again."

  • Renaldo Balkman has the dunk of the season, after one game.

  • Halloween came early to the Suns. I think that's Earl Clark in a banana costume, but it also looks a little like a squash, or an eggplant.

  • A huge roundup of everything Sixers, circa today.

  • If your team gets more shots, that's good. Right?

  • Was Gilbert Arenas limping?

  • Jonny Flynn, talking like a point guard, to HowlinTWolf: "You have to be able to mesh with everybody on the basketball court you have to be able to know what to say to guys, know when to get on them, know when to kind of stroke their ego and baby them a little bit so one key thing I like to try and do is try and get to know everybody off the court and once you get to know everybody off the court and see their tendencies and their personalities, that's when your personality can kick in."

  • Is it Michael Jordan's fault Chicago didn't win the 2016 Olympics? My take is that being famous does not oblige you to any particular cause. (Hopefully there's something that brings out the generous in you, but you can't fault a guy for not feeling this effort.) Jay Mariotti on AOL: "Did Jordan's absence hurt? I don't think it cost Chicago the Games, but having passed Pele three times in the media center hallway, always wearing a smile and a bounce in his step, I can say that the presence of the soccer icon helped Rio. 'It is very important to participate when your country needs you,' Pele said in one of the week's influential remarks. 'If I have to die for my country, I would die for my country. If I have to die for my sport, I would die for my sport. I feel very happy if I can help my country.' Jordan would die for a cigar or a golfing bet, but not for the city that built a statue for him." (Of course, this is not the best day for this PG-13 Jordan picture to be on Deadspin.)

  • Rick Adelman is not yet happy with the Rockets' defense.

  • Jordan Farmar, playing an FBI agent in some show.