Devin Harris has gone from cornerstone to trade bait and back again

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You may remember a time long ago, 12 whole months ago, when Devin Harris was considered a top flight point guard in the league. He was part of the Mavs’ run that resulted in a Finals appearance and the top overall seed in the NBA in 2007 (something, something, first round exit; we’re just going to brush over that).

Then he was traded to the Nets and the first season wasn’t that terrible. Not good, but definitely not, well, last year. Last year brought misery, injury, and a barrage of trade rumors to Harris’ career. With the Nets being the odds on favorites to win the John Wall sweepstakes, Harris’ time in Jersey seemed eminently finite.

But then, of course, the lottery balls bounced Washington’s way, while the Nets were stuck with the third pick. Given the massive amount of failure last year’s record seemed to convey, and with the new ownership in place, questions still lingered around Harris’ future with the club.

But in a report from the New York Daily News, Julian Garcia relates that Harris is locked in with the Nets, especially with the Nets’ hiring of Avery Johnson, Harris’ former coach in Dallas.

Johnson’s offense is likely to make Harris the focal point of the offense, even with Brook Lopez and the prospective third pick on the roster. Moving Harris would have been a huge advantage in upgrading the team if they’d gotten Wall, but things didn’t work out that way. Harris is getting a second chance in New Jersey, which may not be the best of things. But he’s at least getting a coach who is a proponent for him.

Boston’s Marcus Smart gets flopping warning from NBA

BOSTON, MA - OCTOBER 17:  Marcus Smart #36 of the Boston Celtics looks on during the second quarter of the preseason game against the Brooklyn Nets at TD Garden on October 17, 2016 in Boston, Massachusetts. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)
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Boston’s Marcus Smart is one of the league’s more notorious floppers.

He was at it again Monday night against the Houston Rockets — and the league called him on it and gave him a warning.

It happened on the game’s final play — you were probably focused elsewhere, wondering how Al Horford could miss the game-winning layup. But watch Smart as he gets in position for the rebound on that shot.

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The referees didn’t buy it then.

This warning is barely a slap on the wrist. If — in his case, when — Smart gets caught a second time this season he will get a $5,000 fine from the league. Smart is making $3.6 million this season.

Happy birthday Larry Bird. We celebrate with some highlights.

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Larry Bird — the Celtics legend, three-time NBA champion, three-time MVP, 10-time All-NBA — turns 60 on Wednesday.

We celebrate by looking back at his 60-point game March 12, 1985, against the Hawks (video above, and yes that game was played in New Orleans).

Want more Larry the Legend highlights? We got you covered.

Hawks’ Mike Scott sent to D-League on rehab assignment

ATLANTA, GA - SEPTEMBER 26:  Mike Scott #32 of the Atlanta Hawks poses during media day on September 26, 2016 in Atlanta, Georgia.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
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ATLANTA (AP) — Atlanta Hawks forward Mike Scott is expected to play at least two games in the NBA Development League as he comes back from a knee injury that kept him out of training camp and the first 18 games of the season.

Scott played 15 minutes for the Delaware 87ers in Tuesday night’s loss to the Santa Cruz Warriors. He scored four points on 2-of-7 shooting, missing all four of his attempts from 3-point range.

Hawks coach Mike Budenholzer says the D-League is the best way for Scott to get “meaningful, competitive minutes” after undergoing a non-surgical procedure on his left knee.

Scott has played three games for Atlanta since his return. In 28 minutes, he has two points on 1-of-9 attempts, to go along with eight rebounds and six assists.

Watch Kyle O’Quinn throw alley-oop to Carmelo Anthony

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Carmelo Anthony isn’t young anymore, but he had the bounce to go get this one.

These were your two best players for the Knicks in their win over Miami Tuesday. Kyle O'Quinn was forced into action earlier than expected when Joakim Noah went on a fouling spree in the third quarter, but O’Quinn played well in the role. ‘Melo dropped 35 on 27 shots — he’s not as efficient as he once was, but he can still get some buckets.

The Knicks picked up a needed win, because they play a back-to-back Wednesday against the Cleveland Cavaliers and a ticked-off LeBron James (New York will pay the price for Phil Jackson’s “posse” comments with a motivated LeBron Wednesday).