Michael Jordan

Michael Jordan is mentoring Gerald Henderson


Michael Jordan’s legacy as a “teacher” or someone who passed the game on isn’t exactly sterling. He pretty much killed Kwame Brown’s soul, and has never been known to take a special interest in any of his players on the Wizards or Bobcats. Jordan is known to have ridiculously high standards, keeps a close circle of friends, and is aware of his place, as, you know, the best basketball player of all time.

But maybe things are changing. The Charlotte Observer reports that Jordan has started taking Gerald Henderson under his wing, personally providing him with film on how to improve his game, particularly in drawing fouls to get to the line.

Jordan has taken a great personal interest in Henderson’s development. It started before the lockout when Jordan advised Henderson to focus on his ball handling, because without the ability to drive to the rim, Henderson was forfeiting what’s best about his game.

Over time, they’ve developed a bond.

“He’s a great kid with the right work ethic. He can be a really good basketball player, and if I can do what it takes to get him there, I will,” Jordan told the Observer. “I told him to work at shooting 50 percent from the field – don’t just take a lot of shots. And free throws are just what they sound like – free points. Someone with his abilities should be getting to the line all the time.”

via Bobcats owner Michael Jordan mentors Gerald Henderson | CharlotteObserver.com & The Charlotte Observer Newspaper.

A bond? Between Jordan and a player under 40? What is happening? It is the 2012 the Mayans warned us about.

No one has noticed because they keep losing and in some games are getting hammered, but the Bobcats really do have some potential. If you watch their games you’re seeing some cohesiveness, some ability. They still need a major roster overhaul, but Henderson has been very impressive offensively shooting 47 percent from the field. If he could develop a three-point shot he’d be something really deadly. But attacking the rim is going to help as well. It’ll force teams to respect the drive and open up his mid-range jumper.

Reclaiming the Bobcats is a long-term process. It’s good to see Jordan investing in a player finally, to pass on the wealth of knowledge he has at his disposal as the greatest of all time.

As expected, Jimmy Butler says no issue between him, Derrick Rose

Derrick Rose, Jimmy Butler
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Is the Derrick Rose/Jimmy Butler relationship nothing but puppy dogs and rainbows? No. There will be sparks between two intense competitors.

Have those sparks started a fire Bulls fans should be concerned about? A report on Wednesday said the core problem was Butler doesn’t respect Rose’s work ethic, which provided some kindling for that spark to catch.

However, as you would expect, Butler said this was all much ado about nothing, that he and Rose are all good. Via K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune:

Spin this however you wish: Their relationship is fine and someone in the media is making this up; or their relationship has been rough, and this is all just leaking out now.

This is a Bulls team in a bit of a transition as Rose declines some and Butler has grown into a top-flight player. Clearly that dynamic has some people around the team — likely the people in one of one of the players’ camps doesn’t like the power struggle or where it leaves his buddy — talking out of school to the press.

But as Butler noted, winning cures all ills. If Chicago can get off to a fast start, nobody will be asking chemistry questions.

For now, however, tounges are wagging.

Report: No criminal charges to be filed against Matt Barnes

Matt Barnes
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The NBA is still investigating and can take its own action. In theory people involved in the incident could decide to file a civil lawsuit (although Fisher said he would not).

However, Memphis’ Matt Barnes is not going to face any criminal charges for an altercation he instigated with Knicks’ head coach Derek Fisher at the home of Barnes’ estranged wife in Los Angeles, according to police, who talked to TMZ.

Matt Barnes will NOT be charged with a crime for allegedly attacking Derek Fisher over the weekend … the Redondo Beach Police Department tells TMZ Sports.

Cops tell us they did respond to an incident and a police report was filed regarding the altercation — but officers say the case “was reviewed and there is no basis for criminal charges.” As we previously reported, a witness at the home says Barnes struck Fisher in the face and a fight ensued. However, the NY Post is reporting that Fisher did not want to pursue charges against Barnes.

Fisher has been seeing Gloria Govan — Barnes’ estranged wife and star of the “Basketball Wives” reality series — for several months, and was over at her house in the South Bay of Los Angeles Saturday night, along with other friends. Barnes said he got a call from one of his two sons, who “looked distressed” that Fisher was over, and that caused Barnes to drive over to the house. Once he arrived an altercation broke out between the two men, with Barnes allegedly texting a friend that he beat up Fisher and spat in his wife’s face. That’s not going to scar the young boy any further, well done.

If Barnes did this as described (and we don’t know the details), the NBA has to look hard at this. Barnes does not get to decide for a woman he is no longer seeing who she can and cannot see, and who she has over to her home. She is not property. That is the level of control seen in domestic abuse situations, and the league can’t sit back and tolerate it.