Jrue Holiday, JaVale McGee

Don’t look now, but Jrue Holiday is hot

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Jrue Holiday outdueled the celebrated John Wall Wednesday night. Holiday, the sophomore, put up 26 points and had 9 assists, leading the Sixers to a win.

That got some attention, but this isn’t a one-time thing, in his last seven games Holiday has averaged 20.2 points on 56 percent shooting, and 7.4 assists.

What happened? Sixers’ coach Doug Collins told Holiday to stop doing what he thought the coach wanted and to look for his own shot, Collins told the Philadelphia Intelligencer.

“His whole game changed,” Collins said. “I think he’s been playing great basketball.”

“I was just being aggressive,” Holiday said. “Getting into the paint is one of the biggest things.”

The lesson here as always kids — stop trying to make your coach happy.

Holiday has developed into one of the cornerstones of the Sixers rebuilding. There is a long way to go with that project — although right now the Sixers are the eighth seed in the East and just making the playoffs would be a leap forward.

Elton Brand or Andre Iguodala may not be there as this building continues, but Holiday will be. He is as much the Sixers future as anyone now.

Watch Kobe Bryant’s entire retirement-announcement press conference (video)

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Kobe Bryant reflected, told stories and showed his emotions.

For nearly 25 minutes, the Lakers star talked about his pending retirement. It was pretty cool.

Report: Wizards signing Ryan Hollins

Blake Griffin, Ryan Hollins
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Nene hurt his calf. Drew Gooden is banged up. Martell Webster is out for the season.

Those are three players the Wizards expected to play power forward this season.

So, Washington – which has lost four straight – will bring in another big man: Ryan Hollins.

Shams Charania of Yahoo Sports:

The Wizards have a full roster of 15 players. They don’t qualify for a hardship exemption, which a team gets if four players have missed three straight games and will continue to be out. Only Webster and Alan Anderson definitely fit that bill. Gooden, who has missed five straight, might. But it’s unclear both how many of those absences were due to injury and when he’ll return.

So, Washington will have to waive someone to sign Hollins now. It’ll probably be Webster, whose $5,845,250 2016-17 salary is just $2.5 million guaranteed. If he’s out for the year and the Wizards plan to drop him by the summer to clear cap space, why not just do it now?

Hollins is more center than power forward and doesn’t appear to fit well with Marcin Gortat. But at this point, Washington just needs big bodies. Hollins – a nine-year veteran who plays decent interior defense, lacks offensive skill and rebounds poorly for his 7-foot frame – is at least that.

Dwight Howard crushes Kristaps Porzingis with dunk (video)

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Sometimes – as Kristaps Porzingis sees against Dwight Howard – it’s more flattering just to play James Harden-level defense.