Friday Bullets

  • Wizards shooting guard Jordan Crawford tells the Washington Post's Michael Lee, "I don’t tell nobody, but I feel like I can be better than Michael Jordan."

  • Nicolas Batum -- absolutely killing it in EuroLeague play. Nick Gibson of Sheridan Hoops: "Batum threw up a ridiculous line of 26 points, seven rebounds and eight assists with a pair of steals and a ranking of 36 (think of ranking as a poor man’s PER, without the per-minute and pace adjustments). Those stellar numbers were enough to earn him the Euroleague’s Week 2 MVP award."

  • SportsFeat unearths a 1977 article written by Woody Allen about Earl Monroe for Sport magazine: "What makes Monroe different is the indescribable heat of genius that burns deep inside him. Some kind of diabolical intensity comes across his face when he has the ball. One is suddenly transported to a more primitive place. It’s roots time. The eyes are big and white, the teeth flash, the nostrils flare. He dribbles the ball too high, but with a controlled violence. The audience gets high with anticipation of some new type of thrill about to occur." (Hat tip: David Roth)

  • Grantland's Men in Blazers will match your devotion to an NBA team to a soccer club you can root for while the lockout continues.

  • Ira Winderman asks whether zone defenses in the NBA stifle individual brilliance. Perhaps, but the isolation and clearout-heavy NBA of the 1990s was painfully boring at times. Strategic intrigue brings a lot to basketball, a game that thrives on individual talent but also the choreography of fine-tuned team play.

  • LeBron James, Clyde Frazier, Sarah Palin, Rob Mahoney, John Wooden and Basketball Prospectus all in one place -- on The Painted Area's 2011-12 Basketball Books Overview.

  • A brief history of the 3-pointer at the Los Angeles Clippers' site, which means prominent placement for one Eric Piatkowski.

  • Some old-time Washington, D.C. hoops legends rally around an old friend, now in prison, who was once of the District's can't-miss prospects.

  • Andrew Sharp of SB Nation thinks there's something disingenuous about Michael Beasley's claims that he was exploited and betrayed by his former agent and AAU coach: "He felt betrayed when he found out that his agent had been taking care of his mother? He didn't think it was suspicious when his mother moved to Kansas State with him and had a new car and house when she got there? And this 'betrayal' just happens to crystallize after Bell had negotiated the parameters of a shoe deal for him, but before he signed it and would've paid Bell a hefty commission?"

  • The gray wool suit -- an essential for the civilized man, but might be a bit toasty for Dwyane Wade in Miami. In the accompanying interview with GQ, we get a glimpse of how Wade stocks his wardrobe with the help of his iPad: "So how does Wade put his looks together? With the help of his stylist, Calyann Barnett. Barnett's star client loves getting dressed but hates shopping—he can't exactly roll up to the Miami Bloomingdale's—so she sends photos to his iPad and fills up his new 800-square-foot closet."