Joakim Noah won’t be oppressed by shirts, pesky social norms

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Joakim Noah is a weird dude.

Seriously.

He’s productive, unbridled, effective, wild — you can take your pick of frenetic adjectives and chances are, they apply. Noah’s career has been marked equally by his production and his energy, and it’s safe to say that regardless of what Noah does, he’ll do it in his own peculiar style.

So a little Noah anecdote passed on by David Lee shouldn’t surprise us. Joakims will be Joakims, after all. Yet this one might, if only because Lee’s bit is so atypically typical of Noah. From Mike McGraw of the Daily Herald:

“Coach (Billy) Donovan told me that we had like a buddy system and I had to make sure he got to class on time – which first of all, was absolutely impossible,” Lee said. “So I said met me at this designated point, we’ll walk to your first class, you have no idea where the building is. He said, ‘OK, cool D, cool.’

“I see the guy on campus walking. He has shorts down below his waist, no shirt on and a boombox playing music while he’s walking. He’s like, ‘Yo, I’m ready for class.’ I’m like, ‘Jo, come on, man.’ He’s like, ‘What?’

Yeah. Joakim Noah is that guy. Bring us home, David:

“So that was my first ‘getting him to class’ experience. He’s a very free-spirited guy, but I think that’s what makes him so special. There are very few guys and it’s a skill in the NBA, playing hard night in and night out and providing that constant effort. He’s got a great skill set, but what makes him special is that intensity he brings every single night. That’s why the Bulls are lucky to have him.”

Lee’s right. There’s no question that Noah’s eccentricities translate onto the court, even if his in-game wardrobe is a bit more normative. Noah is only successful because of a steadfast commitment to be really strange all the time, and that translates into an active playing style, an active hairstyle, and an active defensive style. It’s a bit odd that Noah swings to the other side of the spectrum when he’s on the hardwood (he may be a chill, free-spirited bro on his off-days, but Noah the player is far more animated), but his on-court persona makes for some fine entertainment.

Keep being you, Joakim. Carry that boombox with pride.

Link via Marcel Mutoni.

DeMarcus Cousins answers first several Kings-related questions same way (video)

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DeMarcus Cousins had a bitter exit from the Kings, but that won’t be the last they see of him.

Cousins’ Pelicans will host Sacramento tomorrow night.

Not that Cousins rushed to talk about the matchup.

Justin Verrier of ESPN:

Cousins is pretty funny when joking with the media, and his smile is contagious. Just listen to all the laughs Cousins generates as he goes through his shtick.

Bonus points to Cousins for eventually breaking down and providing real answers. Some of his relationships in Sacramento were clearly meaningful to him, and he wanted to acknowledge those — even if he’d prefer just to get past this awkward game and all the talk it invites.

Report: Sweet-shooting 7-footer Lauri Markkanen leaving Arizona for NBA draft

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Lauri Markkanen is 7-foot and made 42% of his 3-pointers this season.

That combination alone will have NBA teams drooling, and the Arizona freshman will capitalize.

Evan Daniels of Scout:

Arizona’s Lauri Markkanen is declaring for the NBA Draft and is expected to sign with an agent, multiple sources told Scout.

Markkanen seems pretty certain to get picked in the lottery, likely in the top 10.

Calling him a good shooter for his height undersells him. It’s not just he shoots so efficiently from deep, it’s that he can generate 3-pointers in so many ways — pick-and-pops, spot-ups, off off-ball screens and even running pick-and-rolls himself. Having the height to shoot over defenders is his most noticeable asset, but don’t undersell his mobility.

Markkanen also finishes well at the rim and offensively rebounds at extremely impressive clip for someone who spends so much time on the perimeter. Those interior skills instill belief he will eventually become a suitable defender.

There are a couple red flags. He’s old for a freshman, turning 20 before the draft. He leaves plenty to be desired defensively, especially due to his lack of strength.

But his size and shooting are tantalizing. That’s plenty for now.

Dwyane Wade wowed by jumping, around-the-back alley-oop pass in McDonald’s All-American Game (video)

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Watch for Collin Sexton in the 2018 NBA draft.

In the meantime, the Alabama commit had all eyes — include Dwyane Wade‘s — on him with this pass in the McDonald’s All-American Game last night.

Carmelo Anthony on shrinking role with Knicks: ‘I see the writing on the wall… I’m at peace with that’

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Carmelo Anthony scored just nine points on 12 shots in the Knicks loss to the Heat last night — well below his season averages of 22 points on 19 shots per game.

Anthony, via Ian Begley of ESPN:

“I see the writing on the wall. I see what it is,” Anthony said late Wednesday night. “I see what they’re trying to do, and it’s just me accepting that. That’s what puts me at peace. Just knowing and understanding how things work. I’m at peace with that.”

Is Anthony talking about just the Knicks’ final dozen games of this season, when they’re clearly interesting in testing less-proven players? Or is he referring to his entire tenure in New York?

Anthony has said he’d consider waiving his no-trade clause if the Knicks want to rebuild, and they’ll reportedly try again to trade him this offseason. Perhaps, this is Anthony indicating he’s warming up to the idea of allowing a trade.

Anthony’s and Kristaps Porzingis‘ timelines are barely compatible, if at all. It’d make sense for the Knicks to go in a different direction.

Could Anthony be at peace with that?