Since the season ended — when Frank Vogel led the Indiana Pacers on a 20-18 turnaround that got them into the playoffs then put up a good fight against the Bulls — everyone expected Vogel to move from interim coach to full time head coach.
The Pacers went through the motions of a coaching search, but Wednesday they finally made it official, Vogel is the headman. As he should be, he earned it.
“As I stated after the season, I was in no hurry regarding the coach, mainly because I knew I had a good candidate in Frank,” team president Larry Bird said (via the Associated Press). “But we wanted to get through the draft, and I wanted to have numerous conversations with Frank about a staff that will cover all areas. I feel strongly he is doing that and this coaching staff, as a whole, will help this franchise continue to move forward.”
Brian Shaw, the man who spent the last couple seasons as the lead assistant to Phil Jackson with the Lakers, will be his lead assistant.
Vogel talked about wanting to make the playoffs, but there was only so much he could say as he was forbidden from talking about players due to the lockout.
Kevin Durant said last season playing the Thunder is “never going to be a regular game for me.”
Now, the Warriors star, who’s questionable for tomorrow’s game in Oklahoma City, is singing a different tune.
Anthony Slater of The Athletic:
Just a regular game for me now. I learned how to tune out the crowd. I learned how to tune out the bulls— and just play. Just keep at basketball, and I’ll be alright.
Durant is entitled to change his mind, and maybe that’s all that happened.
But this strikes me as yet another chasm between how Durant actually feels and how he wishes he felt – all while facing immense public scrutiny.
Durant spent eight years in Oklahoma City. Many of his former teammates, including Russell Westbrook, are still there. Durant might want to move on, but how could there not be a different feeling when playing the Thunder, especially in Oklahoma City?
DeMarcus Cousins got ejected from the Pelicans’ win over the Thunder last night for elbowing Russell Westbrook in the head.
Afterward, Tony Allen came to his New Orleans teammate’s defense.
Fred Katz of The Norman Transcript:
Did Cousins elbow Westbrook in the head? Yes. Did Westbrook create and/or embellish the contact? I don’t know.
Westbrook stuck his head in close, and he might have been baiting Cousins into a foul. But that doesn’t give Cousins carte blanche to commit a foul.
And even if Westbrook were baiting Cousins, the elbow still might have hurt. Westbrook’s reaction could have been genuine.
Did Cousins’ reputation as a flagrant fouler influence Westbrook’s strategy and how officials perceived the play? It’s much easier to convince me of that.
ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — Retired NBA star Ray Allen believes he is a victim of “catfishing,” and has asked a court to throw out a case where he is accused of stalking someone he met online.
Allen says Bryant Coleman “pretended to be a number of attractive women interested in” him. In documents filed Tuesday, Allen acknowledges he communicated with who he thought were those women and that he eventually entered into an agreement with Coleman to not disclose details of those conversations.
Allen says that agreement was violated.
It was not clear if Coleman has an attorney, and a working phone number for him could not be found. Coleman told the court in a filing Monday that Allen is stalking him; in Allen’s request for an injunction, he says “the reverse is true.”
Man-on-the-street interviews are a staple of local news.
They just don’t usually include Warriors star Klay Thompson.
But here’s Thompson – in town for Golden State’s win over the Brooklyn Nets on Sunday – talking on Fox 5 New York about walking under scaffolding in the wake of a couple recent scaffolding collapses:
Thompson is the only NBA star who could do this interview so earnestly.