Report: Erick Dampier to the Miami Heat deal "imminent"

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Thumbnail image for dampier_layup.jpgToday Erick Dampier had meetings and a workout with the Miami Heat, but it may be more than that.

Ira Winderman of the Sun Sentinel (and of this site) sent out these tweets:

Erick Dampier believed to have an afternoon workout scheduled with Heat, possibly as precursor to a potential signing.

Erick Dampier actually has gone through meet-and-greet process, and it now appears as if his signing is imminent, if not already done.

If true, the Heat have just made themselves a lot better.

Dampier is really a good fit for that team. First off, he can defend the rim well and is a big body to put on the Dwight Howards of the world. The Heat’s best rim defender now is 6’9″ Joel Anthony, who plays hard but is not a true five. Also on the defensive end, Dampier is a good rebounder.

Second, Dampier does not require a lot of offensive touches, but the ones he does get he uses efficiently. You don’t want to run your offense through the guy (especially with the Heat’s firepower) but if he has a mismatch and you drop the ball into him he will be smart about it.

Last season Dampier had a usage rate of just 11.4 (or about 1 in 10 of his team’s shots when he was on the floor) but he shot 62.4 percent on those. He has shot better than 60 percent for four straight years.

Pat Riley convinced another good player to come and play for the minimum. He is a witch.

Kevin Durant brings fan to tears with autographed shoes (video)

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Kevin Durant has become a villain to many.

Clearly not to this Warriors fan, though.

Carmelo Anthony leaves without speaking to media, will probably get fined

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Lately, Carmelo Anthony has parsed whether the Thunder are frustrated or angry and said he’s going through the roughest stretch of his career.

It didn’t get any better last night.

Anthony scored 11 points on 12 shots with three turnovers, and Oklahoma City got outscored by 21 points with him on the floor in a home loss to the Hornets. The Thunder have now lost two of three, falling to the lowly Nets and Hornets and needing overtime to beat the freefalling Grizzlies.

Royce Young of ESPN:

Anthony today:

I’m sorry. My bad. I had a FaceTime session with my son, so I skipped out on you guys yesterday. I apologize. It’s true, though. That’s true. It’s true. He had a school night.

The NBA’s media-access rules state: “All players must be available to the media for a minimum of five to 10 minutes during the postgame media access period.” It’s been a while since someone got punished for violating the policy, but Kevin Garnett was fined $25,000 for not speaking to the media after Game 7 of the 2012 Eastern Conference finals.

I’m sympathetic to Anthony wanting to speak to his son, who’s still in New York. But the league tends not to take these personal concerns into consideration, which is probably for the best. There’s a rule. Anthony violated it. Assessing which personal calls should supersede the rule is a can of worms not worth opening. Besides, Anthony probably could have returned to the locker room for an interview after concluding the call.

Anthony earns a lot of money. If he wanted to risk a $25,000 fine to speak with his son, I have absolutely no problem with that. But that’s probably the choice he made.

In my experience, Anthony has been forthright with the media. He spent years as the face of the Knicks, dutifully answering for problems created by James Dolan and Phil Jackson. Because he was available nearly daily while his superiors avoided interviews, Anthony was the grilled by the New York media.

I bet he expected a reprieve in Oklahoma City. Instead, the spotlight has shined on him as a problem with the underwhelming Thunder.

It’s understandable he’d rather talk to his son than reporters. But it’s also understandable the NBA wants to promote its business through the media, and the league has power to enforce its rules.

Grizzlies fan absolutely owns kids halftime scrimmage (video)

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The Grizzlies lost for the 15th time in their last 16 games, a 25-point drubbing at home against the Heat, last night.

But it wasn’t all doom and gloom in Memphis.

This young fan – while playing in the halftime scrimmage – stopped his dribble, stepped on the ball, whipped off his youth jersey to reveal a Marc Gasol jersey, flexed, re-started his dribbled then drove for a basket.

Matt Ellentuck of SB Nation:

The Grizzlies don’t deserve this hero.

DeMarcus Cousins pushes Trevor Ariza after whistle, gets technical foul (video)

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For better or worse, DeMarcus Cousins is moody.

Just after getting dunked on by Clint Capela, Cousins showed his frustration by pushing Trevor Ariza after a whistle. The Pelicans center got his NBA-leading ninth technical foul – automatic suspension triggered at No. 16 – but I’m surprised this didn’t escalate beyond just that.