New York Knicks v New Jersey Nets

Isiah Thomas still looms over the Knicks. Not figuratively, either.

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Not only does Knicks GM Donnie Walsh not have his contract extension picked up in spite of the team’s turn around on the court (and in payroll), but Walsh hasn’t even really talked about the situation with James Dolan, the Knicks owner. The two haven’t talked about the team, its resurgence or a contract. Nothing.

But Dolan is still talking to Isiah Thomas, according to a New York Post report.

According to an NBA source, the reason Dolan has not acted on Walsh’s contract is he still has the former disgraced president Thomas on his radar, still speaks to him regularly and still is considering bringing him back in the future….

The NBA source told The Post what’s preventing Dolan from committing to Walsh is not health, but Thomas’ unyielding desire to return. The NBA source said Dolan talks to Thomas more than once a week regarding Knicks issues and does not care about the fan outrage that will occur if he eventually brings him back in some capacity.

This is what happens in a vacuum of actual information. Dolan hasn’t spoken to the press in four years and when Knicks PR people are asked about it there is no comment.

Does that mean that Walsh is out and Thomas could be back in? No. It means we don’t have any idea. But based on Dolan’s love of being contrarian and his known friendship with Thomas, speculation starts to fly. We don’t know what Dolan is thinking, so it could be anything. Maybe Dolan wants to bring Thomas back in some capacity, maybe not.

But this is on Dolan for allowing the rumors space to breathe and grow. And if he doesn’t pick up the extension on Walsh’s contract, he’s a worse owner than we thought. Which is saying something.

DeMarcus Cousins says Mavericks’ rumored interest flatters him, but he loves Kings

Sacramento Kings center DeMarcus Cousins (15) receives a blow to the head from Dallas Mavericks' Dwight Powell as Cousins works to get to the basket in the first half of an NBA basketball game, Wednesday, Dec. 7, 2016, in Dallas. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)
AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez
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The Mavericks’ long-rumored interest in DeMarcus Cousins took its most direct public turn before the season, when Dallas signed Cousins’ brother, Jaleel Cousins. Jaleel is now on the Mavericks’ D-League affiliate, and I bet he will remain there as DeMarcus approaches 2018 free agency.

Brad Townsend of The Dallas Morning News:

So, DeMarcus Cousins, what do you think about the Mavericks’ long-rumored interest in acquiring you?

“It’s flattering,” Cousins told me, with a laugh, after the Kings’ Wednesday shootaround at AAC. Then, turning serious, he added of the Mavericks, “I respect them.”

“But,” I said, “I’ve also heard that you like it in Sacramento.”

“No,” Cousins corrected, “I love Sacramento.”

Cousins is getting good at this, toeing the line between appreciating another team’s interest and expressing his satisfaction with the Kings.

And give Cousins credit. He keeps producing at a star level for a team that hasn’t provided him with the proper support. Sacramento again appears headed toward the lottery, even as Cousins averages 29-10.

Questions remain, though: How much of Cousins’ attitude is him trying to make the best of an inescapable situation, and will expanded options in the summer of 2018 test his loyalty?

LeBron James dunks, struts past camerapeople and toward crowd, spooks fan (video)

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LeBron James is dominating, and the Cavaliers are rolling over the Knicks.

It’s almost as if something has LeBron particularly riled up. But maybe ease up a little? That cowering fan isn’t Phil Jackson.

Kevin Love drips snot all over his face, maybe into his mouth (video)

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Cameras zoomed in on Kevin Love at the wrong moment:

Need a sensory cleanser? Enjoy this fantastic outlet pass from Kevin Love to LeBron James:

Derrick Rose out for Knicks-Cavaliers with back injury, getting MRI

NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 22:  Derrick Rose #25 of the New York Knicks dribbles against the Portland Trail Blazers during their game at Madison Square Garden on November 22, 2016 in New York City.   NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)
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NEW YORK (AP) — Derrick Rose is missing the New York Knicks’ game against Cleveland because of lower back pain.

Rose left the Knicks’ victory over Miami on Tuesday in the third quarter with back spasms. Coach Jeff Hornacek says Rose still felt sore on Wednesday when he came in and met with team doctors, so they sent him for an MRI exam to make sure there was no structural damage.

Rose is averaging 16.7 points and this is the first game he’s missed this season.

Brandon Jennings will start in Rose’s place.