Eddie House has a one-finger answer to all the Heat critics

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Lost in the immense number of stories about the Heat this summer, from the obvious LeBron James-Dwyane Wade-Chris Bosh meetup to Zydrunas Ilgauskas joining James to Mike Miller as the designated shooter and Udonis Haslem as the tough guy was the signing of Eddie House. And while there’s a lot of talk about how the Heat don’t have any “winners” (as if the number of wins those guys have racked up is insignificant or Dwyane Wade’s championship ring doesn’t shine golden), House is certainly one.

A member of the 2008 Celtics championship team, House gave a lot himself to Boston. Then he was ditched to New York for Nate Robinson when the Celtics needed a point guard upgrade (if you’d call Nate a point guard). It was a move that you can tell didn’t sit well with House. No matter how many times these guys tell themselves “it’s business” it still stings when a team that you’ve committed to asks you to sacrifice and give yourself and then whips you around for the next available offer. House knows the score, and that’s why he’s in Miami, joining a business-focused Heat team off the bench as soon as he recovers from injury.

And he’s got a message for all the critics the Heat have dealt with over the summer. It’s pretty short and sweet. From the Palm Beach Post:

“So, at the end of the day, middle fingers to all the haters.”

Fair enough, Eddie. So served.

Opening night is a week and a half away and when it comes, House might be the only member of the Heat to get any sort of applause in Boston. But I’d expect that if he’s ready for that game, and in the subsequent games in Boston, he won’t be playing friendly against his former mates. He’s going to be looking to stick the dagger in. And there’s a decent chance he throws up one of those fingers, too.

Remembering Notre Dame, Laker legend Tommy “the hawk” Hawkins

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Tommy Hawkins passed away recently at the age of 80.

The former NBA player was the first black athlete to earn All-America honors in basketball at Notre Dame (he still holds the school’s total rebounds record), was drafted in the first round, and went on to have a 10-year NBA career playing for the Minneapolis/Los Angeles Lakers as well as the Cincinnati Royals. Los Angeles fans may also remember him as the long time director of communications for the Los Angeles Dodgers after his playing days ended.

The NBA put together this well done video look back at Hawkins’ career.

Celtics’ Brad Stevens said early September tests will show if Thomas ready for camp

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Isaiah Thomas said he expects to be ready for the Celtics’ training camp next month. The guard’s All-NBA season came to an early end in the playoffs when he aggravated a labral tear in his right hip initially suffered back in March. At least the injury did not require surgery.

Players are also about the worst judges of when they will recover from an injury. They pretty much all think they are invincible and will be healthy faster than doctors predict.

Coaches tend to be more pragmatic. Take Boston’s Brad Stevens, who told Chris Mannix on The Vertical Podcast that tests in a couple of weeks will show if Thomas is ready for camp.

“He has another follow-up and another scan in the early part of September. Obviously, it’s been a lot of appropriate rest, a lot of rehab. There have been some good strides here certainly in the last month or few weeks, but we’re not going to know that until after that early September timeframe.”

The Celtics are understandably going to be cautious with Thomas, while Thomas wants to prove he is healthy and has no ill effects from the injury as he enters a contract year (one where he expects to get PAID). Also, the Celtics could use him in camp as they start to figure out how he and Gordon Hayward can share playmaking duties.

Still, from the outset, the timelines have suggested he should be ready for camp in late September. Coaches are just cautious on these things by nature.

Allen Iverson predicts LeBron James will win MVP

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LeBron James has four NBA MVP trophies in his case. (Does he keep that case in his home in Akron or the one in Los Angeles… that’s a question for another day.) Only Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (six) and Michael Jordan (five) have more.

Could LeBron James add a fifth to his case this season?

Allen Iverson said yes at last weekend’s Big3 playoffs in Seattle.

LeBron was fourth in preseason odds to win the MVP at 15/2, behind Russell Westbrook, Kevin Durant, and Kawhi Leonard.

To me, LeBron could be a good bet. If/when Kyrie Irving is traded, the chances of LeBron getting the MVP go up. If LeBron puts up impressive numbers (again) and leads a depleted Cavaliers team to a top two seed in the East, he is certainly going to be in consideration. And should be.

It’s a long season, and personally, I think you need to get midway through the season before seriously considering the year-end awards. But history says LeBron will be in the mix, and Allen Iverson could be proven prophetic.

Phoenix Suns with quality solar eclipse joke on Twitter

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With the cooler-than-I-expected solar eclipse on Monday came a lot of bad solar eclipse jokes on Twitter. Because that’s what Twitter does. Especially the NBA Twitterverse. We knew a lot of “where on the flat earth will Kyrie Irving watch the eclipse?” jokes were coming.

There were a couple of good ones, however.

Appropriately, the Phoenix Suns won the day.

One personal favorite here, an old meme that never goes out of style.