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5hJackie MacMullan

How Shaq moved a mountain to deliver one special gift

When Shaq-a-Claus comes to town, he brings holiday gifts to kids -- even snow in L.A.

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Green frustrated by missed flagrant foul call (1:23)
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Rockets, Warriors 2OT thriller turns into instant classic (1:29)
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Game against LeBron means more for Wade due to relationship (1:25)
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LeBron not thinking about Finals rematch (0:45)
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How LeBron and Wade teamed up for back-to-back titles (3:30)
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Will Draymond Green ever stop kicking players on the court? (1:53)
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Can Harden disrupt the West? (1:59)
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Skate night in the NBA (0:58)
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Stephen A. gives Towns the edge over Porzingis (1:55)
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Do we give Melo enough credit for being clutch? (1:58)
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Should MJ reconcile with Barkley? (2:06)
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LeBron James is helping his teammates more than ever (1:17)

Now

Sarah Spain Contributor, espnW.com 

Michael Wilbon had to stop and get his pic with faux LeBron. The real LeBron will be donning the same Cubs uniform tonight after losing a World Series bet with Dwayne Wade.

Ian Begley ESPN Staff Writer 

Tom Thibodeau was running through the ways in which Carmelo Anthony can hurt an opponent on offense and he finished with"he doesn't get enough credit for his playmaking." Anthony's assists are down following a season in which he reached a career-high. But on Wednesday he served mostly as a distributor and decoy early on vs. MIN. It will be interesting to see if that continues tonight.

Ian Begley ESPN Staff Writer 

It's likely that the Knicks are without both Courtney Lee and Joakim Noah for tonight's Timberwolves game. A source told ESPN's Tim MacMahon that Lee's ankle injury will likely keep him sidelined on Friday night but he shouldn't be out long term. According to the Knicks' website, it's likely that Noah misses tonight's game due to an ankle injury.

ESPN Stats and Information  

The Lakers, 17-65 last season, might threaten the greatest one-season turnaround in team history. The franchise's largest current season-to-season improvement (accounting only for full seasons) is 21 wins, achieved by the 1971-72 team, which won 33 straight games and finished 69-13. The Lakers need to reach 38 wins to tie the team mark for largest improvement. Entering tonight's game against the Raptors, ESPN's BPI gives the Lakers a 19 percent chance of reaching 38 wins.

Qiushi Li ESPN 

Minnesota Timberwolves coach Tom Thibodeau on the Knicks' triangle offense: "I think they have incorporated more pick and rolls, which makes sense because it fits the personnel. When you look at Derrick Rose and Jennings, (who are) both very good pick and roll players, and Noa - a very unique player - and the things that he can bring to the offense. Carmelo, his ability to play multiple positions, to play pick and roll, to play isolate and catch and shoot…and he doesn't get enough credit for his playmaking. Courtney (Lee) has been a very good player in the league for a long time, a glue guy. It's a very talented team."

Justin Verrier ESPN Staff Writer 

The Pelicans have sent second-rounder Cheick Diallo back to the Austin Spurs of the D-League after five days with the team.

Nick Friedell ESPN Staff Writer 

Bulls are hopeful Doug McDermott will be cleared for contact later today. Fred Hoiberg wants to see him get a couple workouts in before being cleared for a game. McDermott has been ruled out of Saturday's game in Dallas.

Sarah Spain Contributor, espnW.com 

This faux LeBron--wearing the same Cubs Alt 2 uniform he'll wear tonight to pay off his World Series bet with Dwayne Wade--is the hottest selfie spot in Chicago right now. Everyone is stopping, including me!

Bill Barnwell @billbarnwell

ESPN Classic is showing a random Nuggets-Rockets game from April 1990 on the promise of crazy amounts of scoring - I would recommend that

Ian Begley ESPN Staff Writer 

Picture posted outside of the T-Wolves locker room at MSG features Tom Thibodeau, Scott Layden, Rick Brunson and Cole Aldrich during their Knicks days:

ESPN Stats and Information  

The Lakers' over/under for regular-season wins entering the season was 25.5. Only the Nets had a lower over/under in Las Vegas. With a 10-10 record, the Lakers have a 99.4 percent likelihood of going over that win total, according to ESPN's Basketball Power Index, which projects the team to finish with 34 wins.