Seems like every day one or more NBA players say they are open to the idea of playing overseas during the NBA lockout. While we have our doubts about how many will actually go (even if the lockout drags into the season), here’s a roundup of who is saying and doing what in the last 24 hours.
Sacramento Kings draft pick and soon-to-be marketing campaign focus Jimmer Fredette is not considering going overseas, that according to a tweet from Sean Cunningham of News10 in Sacramento. Not a real shock there, don’t expect any first round draft picks to head overseas — they will get paid a lot more to play in the NBA and they risk blowing all that by getting injured overseas. (The only exception is the guys drafted from European teams this past season, who may work out deals to remain until the lockout ends.)
Golden State point guard Stephen Curry said that he would consider options for playing in China if the lockout dragged on, as would teammate Dorell Wright, as reported in the Contra Costa Times. Guess which guy those teams want more. This is Curry following the players union company line, there are no offers now but if things drag out he may listen more seriously.
Also, Phoenix center Marcin Gortat said that he would entertain playing for a team in Russia if the lockout drags on, he told a Polish publication. He will also play for Poland in EuroBasket this summer.
Nets’ national anthem singer kneels to finish performance
NEW YORK (AP)— The national anthem singer at the Brooklyn Nets’ home opener took a knee at the end of her performance.
Justine Skye was nearing the completion of the song Friday night when she went to one knee for the finish. There were some cheers, but appeared to be more boos from the crowd at Barclays Center to see the Nets play the Orlando Magic.
NBA players have continued to stand during the playing of the anthems, as required by league rule.
Mavericks’ rookie guard Dennis Smith Jr. misses game with knee swelling
This was more of what fans expected from Lonzo Ball.
After a rough first game against the Clippers — with Patrick Beverleyin his face all night — Ball found plenty of room to operate against the soft defense of the Phoenix Suns. With room to operate Ball had 29 points, 11 rebounds, and nine assists — just one assist short of a triple-double. He helped the Lakers pull away to a lead in the third then hold on for a 132-130 win over the Suns.
Ball wasn’t terribly efficient, 12-of-27 shooting, but he was 4-of-9 from three, he played with great pace, he was decisive, and was finding guys with his passes. It was a step forward, even if it was against a sad defense (Eric Bledsoe can be a good defender, but he has seemed disinterested in recent years).
Ball and the Lakers are going to be up and down this season, the goal is for there to be more ups near the end of the season.
LeBron James rejects Giannis Antetokounmpo at the rim