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Cavaliers buy D-League team; league affiliations announced

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Next season, whether or not we have NBA games, we will have D-League games. (Some of which you can see on Versus, just to do an in-house plug.)

And there will be D-League games in Canton, Ohio, because the Cleveland Cavaliers have purchased the D-League team in New Mexico Thunderbirds and will be moving them to Canton, the team announced. The Canton team will be Cleveland’s primary D-League affiliate.

Every NBA team has an affiliation with a D-League team where they can send players in their first two years in the NBA down for seasoning. Five NBA teams own a D-League team and have a ‘one-to-one’ affiliation: The Golden State Warriors (Dakota Wizards), Los Angeles Lakers (Los Angeles D-Fenders), Oklahoma City Thunder (Tulsa 66ers) and San Antonio Spurs (Austin Toros). Four others have what the league describes as a “hybrid” affiliation: The Houston Rockets (Rio Grande Valley Vipers), New Jersey Nets (Springfield Armor), New York Knicks (Erie BayHawks) and Dallas Mavericks (Texas Legends).

The league also released the affiliations for the other D-League teams:

Bakersfield Jam (California): Los Angeles Clippers, Phoenix Suns, Toronto Raptors.

Fort Wayne Mad Ants (Indiana): Detroit Pistons, Indiana Pacers, Milwaukee Bucks.

Idaho Stampede: Denver Nuggets, Portland Trail Blazers, Utah Jazz.

Iowa Energy: Chicago Bulls, New Orleans Hornets, Washington Wizards.

Maine Red Claws: Boston Celtics, Charlotte Bobcats, Philadelphia 76ers.

Reno Bighorns (Nevada): Atlanta Hawks, Memphis Grizzlies, Sacramento King.

Sioux Falls Skyforce (South Dakota): Miami Heat, Minnesota Timberwolves, Orlando Magic.

Matt Barnes says he went to house because his son looked distressed

Derek Fisher, Matt Barnes, Russell Westbrook
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So far, the only substantive accounts of the Matt Barnes-Derek Fisher altercation have come from anonymous sources.

The Knicks coach has deflected questions.

But Barnes is giving his account, at least of the lead-up.

Ramona Shelburne of ESPN:

It’s completely understandable that Barnes would act to ensure his children’s welfare.

And let’s say everything he said is true. It still leaves important questions unanswered.

Did Barnes – as he reportedly texted a friend he did – beat up Fisher and spit on his estranged wife, Gloria Govan? If so, why did Barnes deem that necessary to protect kids?

Gregg Popovich resting himself for Spurs game at Sacramento

Gregg Popovich
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Gregg Popovich said he wouldn’t coach in July.

Apparently, he’s taking off part of October, too.

Marc J. Spears of Yahoo Sports:

It’s not that surprising to see Tim Duncan, Tony Parker, Manu Ginobili and Boris Diaw staying home. Veterans miss preseason games all the time just to rest. With the Spurs, it happens even in the regular season.

But it’s still a little strange to see the head coach sit out, even though Popovich also did it last year.

It makes sense, though. Who cares about this preseason game? If travelling less helps the 66-year-old Popovich stay fresh in the years ahead, that’s well worth it. Plus, it gets Messina a little extra experience. Some day, he might be the head coach.