NBA Finals, Lakers Celtics: Lamar Odom worries Doc Rivers


odom_dunk.jpgCoaches worry about everything. It’s what they get paid to do. They worry matchups, execution, referees, clashing personalities, injuries, the media, who their daughter is dating, how much air is in the balls, the music played during timeouts, the cost of dry cleaning. Everything.

But when a coach singles out one particular worry, as Doc Rivers did to WEEI in Boston about Lamar Odom, you know it is serious.

“Yeah, he’s tough.  He can play the three full-time if he wants to.  That is the speed that he has. You know where he concerns us the most is on the rebound breakout.  He’s one of the few bigs in the league that rebounds the ball, brings it out and then leads to their break.  That’s a very difficult challenge for us.  It creates mismatches.  It ends up where a guard has to take the ball. Now we have bad matchups around the floor.  He’s been very effective against us doing that. So that is our big concern with him.”

Two years ago the Celtics won the battle of the benches handily. James Posey killed the Lakers. The Celtics need to do that again, with some combination of Sheed, Big Baby and Tony Allen (who may be the Celtics best choice to defend Kobe).

Lamar Odom could change that bench equation around. By himself. Or not, you never know what Lamar Odom you get on any given night. But for Doc that’s still a worry.

C.J. McCollum ejected for flagrantly fouling Gordon Hayward (video)

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I’m not sure C.J. McCollum meant to grab Gordon Hayward‘s neck. The 6-foot-8 Hayward elevated, and the 6-foot-4 McCollum just might not have been able to get high enough to make a play on the ball.

But McCollum did grab Hayward’s neck.

It was a dangerous and unnecessary play, especially in the preseason.

Report: Mavericks may be team interested in Larry Sanders

Larry Sanders
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The Dallas Mavericks are looking for a center— desperately at times, they brought JaVale McGee into training camp to get a look. They will start Zaza Pachulia and behind him it’s probably Samuel Dalembert once he gets healthy.

Which is why Dallas may be the team interested in Larry Sanders — Mark Cuban is a guy known for giving second chances in the league. But there have been no talks, yet, reports Tim MacMahon at ESPN.

Larry Sanders has been out of the game since his buyout last February trying to deal with his personal demons and may well not be ready to return. He may never return.

His couple seasons with the Bucks were filled with drama and issues. There was the nightclub brawl left him with an injured thumb in need of a surgery. There were the charges of animal cruelty. There was a five-game drug suspension. There was missed time for personal reasons. There was the 10-game suspension for marijuana use (he failed at least four tests to get there) — then that suspension was extended past the 10 games. In the end, he agreed to a buyout to get space away from the game to deal with his personal issues.

He may or may not be ready to return from that. He may or may not ever be ready. But if he decides to give it a try, NBA teams will be waiting. Maybe Dallas.