Orlando Magic v Phoenix Suns

Is Mickael Pietrus on the trading block? He seems to think he is.

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Remember when Mickael Pietrus was a pivotal member of a Finals team? That wasn’t that long ago, just 2009. It was his defensive length and hot shooting that helped the Magic win the East that season. Then he was downgraded for other options by the Magic, including Vince Carter (that certainly worked out well) before being shipped to Phoenix as part of the trades this past year that brought in Jason Richardson.

Now it seems that Pietrus may be moved. He certainly gave that impression with an interview with a French newspaper. From La Republique  des Pyrenees:

“If I stay or not? I have no idea. At the end of the season, the club has rejected several offers for me. They preferred to wait, but it is quite possible that I will be traded. “

via Pause for the basketball player Pau Mike Pietrus – LaRépubliquedesPyrénées.

Pietrus has bucked at multiple stops about his role and how the team has traded him. He’s in an odd spot. He’s not good enough to be treated well but he’s good enough to warrant consideration. The result is Pietrus is constantly wondering where he stands with teams who won’t give him straight answers. If Pietrus were to improve on defense, he’d be more than enough of a role player to find some stability. Until then he’ll be wondering where he ends up. Maybe this lockout isn’t so bad for everyone after all.

Khris Middleton dunks, Jimmy Butler can’t stop him (VIDEO)

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Khris Middleton has more expectations and more pressure on him after a breakout season in Milwaukee, followed by him getting him PAID this summer.

Well, he looked pretty good on this play against the Bulls, making the steal then throwing down despite Jimmy Butler‘s efforts to stop him.

Middleton finished with 10 points on 5-of-7 shooting for the Bucks. However, Butler had the last laugh as he went off for 23 points on 12 shots and led the Bulls to the (meaningless) preseason win.

Somebody looks comfortable: Paul George drops 20 in first quarter

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Paul George‘s first experience starting as a power forward was going up against Anthony Davis — not just one of the best power forwards in the game, one of the handful of best players in the game period. That didn’t go well for George, and he wasn’t happy about it.

His second experience was in another preseason game Tuesday, going up against the Pistons and their four, Ersan İlyasova. He’s not quite as intimidating.

George scored 20 points on 7-of-8 shooting, 4-of-5 on threes — and that was just the first quarter (you can see it all in the video above).

As we have said before, George at the four is not a bad call by the Pacers, but some of that depends on the matchup. On the nights the Pacers face Davis or Blake Griffin or LaMarcus Aldridge or Zach Randolph (or a handful of others) the Pacers’ coaching staff is going to have to adjust. But there are a lot of nights where George at the four is going to force the other team to adjust, and that will play into the Pacers’ hands.