Orlando Magic v Miami Heat

Stan Van Gundy, no fan of team buyouts

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Boston picked up Troy Murphy. Miami picked up Mike Bibby. Chicago picked up Rasual Butler.

Three of the four teams considered contenders in the East picked up a veteran for their bench that was bought out at the deadline by another team.

Orlando stood pat. Want to guess what Stan Van Gundy told the Orlando Sentinel about buyouts?

Van Gundy feels the current rules make it tougher to convince players to sacrifice for the good of a team.

“You spend all this time in your locker room talking about trying to get guys to put aside personal things and ‘it’s all about the team,’ ” Van Gundy said. “And then on March 1st you’re changing the team and sending guys out the door. I think pretty quickly players pick up that you’re sort of full of crap, that they’re not really part of it. And why are they buying in [to the team concept] if you’re just going to jettison ’em? I don’t think it’s good…”

“I don’t like it, but I’m not saying anybody’s wrong, and if there’s somebody out there that would’ve helped us, we would’ve done it, too,” Van Gundy said. “I just think the league needs to look at the whole thing.”

I’m not convinced that the buyout is that big a part of this. A player buys in or doesn’t based on their makeup. A real competitor will fight regardless of the circumstances (Antawn Jamison in Cleveland this season pops to mind). But, you can bet this will come up during the CBA talks, too.

Gilbert Arenas: Caron Butler’s version of gun incident ‘false’

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Caron Butler recently detailed the Gilbert Arenas-Javaris Crittenton gun incident.

In a since-deleted – but screenshot-captured – Instagram post, Arenas gives his description:

The biggest differences between Butler’s and Arenas’ versions:

1. Arenas claims he wasn’t the one who owed Crittenton money, that the feud escalated over Arenas prematurely showing his hand during a card game.

2. Arenas says he told Crittenton to pick a gun to shoot Arenas with – not to pick a gun he’d get shot by Arenas with.

Players’ union, NBA to set up cardiac screening for retired players

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First it was Darryl Dawkins. Then it was Moses Malone.

Two all-time great players who recently died — and at t0o young an age, 58 and 60 respectively — from undiagnosed heart conditions. Even before that, recognizing the issue the NBA players union and the league itself were setting up supplemental health coverage to provide cardiac screening for retired players, something ESPN’s Jackie MacMullan recently broke.

The joint effort between union executive director Michele Roberts and NBA commissioner Adam Silver — at a time when there still may be potentially acrimonious labor negotiations looming for their sides — is intended to ease the health concerns of its retired players.

Roberts said action from the players’ association on providing screening for its retired players is “imminent.”

“I wish I could give you an exact timetable, but we have to make sure all the components are in place,” Roberts told ESPN recently. “I will tell you we hope to have something sooner than later.”

The Cardiologists are affiliated with the NBA already, and some of the money will come from the league, while the union is both pitching in a chunk of cash and is the one organizing this, according to the report.

It’s good to Roberts and Silver working together on this. While you’d like to think this would be the kind of no-brainer move that the league and union would work together on, in the past the relationship didn’t always facilitate this sort of cooperation even on the obvious.

I’d like to think this bodes well for future labor talks, but I’m not willing to completely draw that parallel.