Bobcats testing trade market for Gerald Wallace, Stephen Jackson

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We have a shocking development in Charlotte: Larry Brown has grown tired of the players on his roster and covets what other teams have.

Okay, this was as inevitable as Democrats and Republicans feuding. Larry Brown has done two things everywhere he has coached — moved on and thought other team’s players were better than his own.

Not that he doesn’t have reason to be frustrated with Gerald Wallace and Stephen Jackson, both of whom have been pedestrian this season for a Bobcats team that is 9-16 and going backwards.

So the Bobcats are testing the market for Wallace and Jackson, according to the Charlotte Observer. This after we told you they tried to find their way into the Carmelo Anthony sweepstakes. The Bobcats have talked to 15-20 teams putting different scenarios out there. The report adds the Bobcats may be overvaluing what the market will pay for those two stars.

We’re trying to picture how bad the already unimpressive Bobcats would be if either of those players were moved for picks and young players to develop. Those two at least put up points nightly, which is more than you can say for most of the Bobcat roster.

This, however, is my favorite paragraph from the Observer story.

Trades have been standard practice for the Bobcats since Brown was hired as coach in April of 2008. Since then, the Bobcats have made nine trades involving 27 players. The only players who pre-date Brown’s arrival are Wallace and center Nazr Mohammed.

Really, you shouldn’t be shocked if any Bobcat player gets moved in the next couple months — except for Tyrus Thomas. The Bobcats are high on his potential.

2017 NBA playoffs have been historically uncompetitive

AP Photo/Elise Amendola
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The NBA Finals so many wanted to see – Cavaliers-Warriors III – is here.

At least it will be.

Today is the first of six off days before the 2017, which begin June 1 in Oakland.

The lengthy delay is the product of an underwhelming postseason featuring few competitive series and numerous blowouts.

Golden State swept its way through the West, and Cleveland dropped only one game (to the Celtics in the conference finals) while winning the East. There have been only two Game 7s, but considering the magnitude, neither felt that compelling. Blake Griffin‘s injury undercut the Clippers against the Jazz, and Celtics over Wizards felt inevitable with home teams winning each game of the series. Between, there have been several lackluster games and series.

There have been just 74 playoff games this year – the fewest before the Finals since since the NBA instituted a best-of-seven first round in 2003:

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That’s 74 of a possible 98 games – 76%, the lowest since 1999 and seventh-lowest ever.

Even if the Finals go seven games, it will be the fewest games in a postseason since 2007. If the Finals go five or fewer games, it’ll be the shortest postseason in this playoff format.

And it hasn’t just been quantity. The quality of games has been lacking, too.

Though there were more blowouts last year by nearly any measure, the 2017 postseason’s average margin in pre-Finals games (13.5) is fifth-highest all-time and second-highest since 1959 (behind 2016, 14.2).

Combine the two factors, and these are the drabbest playoffs in nearly 50 years. Here’s each postseason plotted by average margin in pre-Finals games and percentage of possible games pre-Finals:

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This probably just confirms what you’ve seen: The 2017 playoffs have been in a rut.

We’re all counting on the Cavaliers and Warriors to salvage this postseason, but considering how deep the hole is, anything less than an epic Finals probably won’t cut it.

Kyrie Irving crosses over Avery Bradley, hits 3-pointer (video)

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Avery Bradley got around one screen then, thanks to Kyrie Irving‘s excellent ball-handling, lunged at another that wasn’t coming as Irving hit a 3-pointer.

LeBron James beautifully pass-fakes, makes layup in transition (video)

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LeBron James is a treasure.

Shaquille O’Neal’s big toe is seriously jacked up (PHOTO)

shaq o'neal
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Remember how we we all freaked out when we saw pictures of LeBron James‘ feet back in 2013?

You probably didn’t want to be reminded that it existed, but it does. Still. And apparently jacked up feet is the consequence of a lifetime of playing professional basketball. Once can only assume it has something to do with tight shoes and constant, hard changes of direction in said tight shoes.

We got yet another vision of what basketball shoes can do to feet on Thursday when TNT analyst Shaquille O’Neal showed off his, er, little piggies.

Much to the horror of the Internet in general, it was Shaq’s right big toe that took social media by storm. Mostly because it’s not even close to pointing in the right direction.

I’m going to show you what it looks like. Be forewarned, it might just be NSFL.

Via Twitter:

Oh. Oh … why?

Social media reacted appropriately and proportionately:

Shaq did have issues with that toe during the course of his career, and at one point it was so bad that he had to have surgery to remove bone spurs from the toe in 2002.

That still doesn’t explain why it’s all over your TV and the Internet, but here we are. I am sorry.