76ers willing to trade #2 pick…if someone will take Elton Brand

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Here’s the report, courtesy of ESPN’s Chad Ford: 

A number of teams have already looked into the availability of the Philadelphia 76ers’ No. 2 pick in the June 24 draft. 
The asking price? Several sources said they were told that the Sixers want their trade partner to take Elton Brand off their hands. Good luck with that. With Brand set to earn $51 million over the course of the next three years, he’s virtually impossible to trade. 
As much as teams like the Minnesota Timberwolves, for instance, love Evan Turner, I don’t think they love him that much.

It’s a shame to see that the 76ers are willing to trade away a player who could be a key to their future in order to erase the mistakes of their past. Brand was supposed to be the piece that put the 76ers over the top; now, he’s an albatross that’s keeping them from getting where they want to go. Turner doesn’t appear to have John Wall’s superstar potential, but he could easily be an All-Star if he’s surrounded by players that could take advantage of his playmaking and ability to drive to the rim. If he improves his jump shot, he could easily be a Brandon Roy-type player — not a lot of flash, but superstar production. The question now is whether any team believes in Turner enough to allow Brand to potentially tie up their cap for the next couple of seasons. 

Kevin Durant reverses course: Playing Thunder ‘just a regular game for me now’

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Kevin Durant said last season playing the Thunder is “never going to be a regular game for me.”

Now, the Warriors star, who’s questionable for tomorrow’s game in Oklahoma City, is singing a different tune.

Anthony Slater of The Athletic:

Durant:

Just a regular game for me now. I learned how to tune out the crowd. I learned how to tune out the bulls— and just play. Just keep at basketball, and I’ll be alright.

Durant is entitled to change his mind, and maybe that’s all that happened.

But this strikes me as yet another chasm between how Durant actually feels and how he wishes he felt – all while facing immense public scrutiny.

Durant spent eight years in Oklahoma City. Many of his former teammates, including Russell Westbrook, are still there. Durant might want to move on, but how could there not be a different feeling when playing the Thunder, especially in Oklahoma City?

Tony Allen: Russell Westbrook flopped to draw DeMarcus Cousins

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DeMarcus Cousins got ejected from the Pelicans’ win over the Thunder last night for elbowing Russell Westbrook in the head.

Afterward, Tony Allen came to his New Orleans teammate’s defense.

Fred Katz of The Norman Transcript:

Did Cousins elbow Westbrook in the head? Yes. Did Westbrook create and/or embellish the contact? I don’t know.

Westbrook stuck his head in close, and he might have been baiting Cousins into a foul. But that doesn’t give Cousins carte blanche to commit a foul.

And even if Westbrook were baiting Cousins, the elbow still might have hurt. Westbrook’s reaction could have been genuine.

Did Cousins’ reputation as a flagrant fouler influence Westbrook’s strategy and how officials perceived the play? It’s much easier to convince me of that.

Ray Allen tells Orlando court he was ‘catfished’

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ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — Retired NBA star Ray Allen believes he is a victim of “catfishing,” and has asked a court to throw out a case where he is accused of stalking someone he met online.

Allen says Bryant Coleman “pretended to be a number of attractive women interested in” him. In documents filed Tuesday, Allen acknowledges he communicated with who he thought were those women and that he eventually entered into an agreement with Coleman to not disclose details of those conversations.

Allen says that agreement was violated.

It was not clear if Coleman has an attorney, and a working phone number for him could not be found. Coleman told the court in a filing Monday that Allen is stalking him; in Allen’s request for an injunction, he says “the reverse is true.”

Klay Thompson interviewed about scaffolding on local news (video)

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Man-on-the-street interviews are a staple of local news.

They just don’t usually include Warriors star Klay Thompson.

But here’s Thompson – in town for Golden State’s win over the Brooklyn Nets on Sunday – talking on Fox 5 New York about walking under scaffolding in the wake of a couple recent scaffolding collapses:

Thompson is the only NBA star who could do this interview so earnestly.