Wednesday’s And-1 links: It’s going to cost you to see Jeremy Lin

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Here is our daily look around the NBA — links to stories worth reading and notes to check out (stuff that did not get its own post here at PBT).

You want to see Jeremy Lin play for the Knicks? It’s going to cost you.

Larry Bird says he and Red Auerbach are about loyalty, which is why they never would have traded the big three (Bird, McHale, Parrish) like Danny Ainge has said they could and should have. (Ainge talks about how that time impacts what he will do with the coming changes to these Celtics.)

That is part of ESPN’s Sports Guy Bill Simmons podcast with Larry Bird.

Some businesses on the wrong side of the fence for the All-Star Weekend in Orlando don’t like the compensation the league is offering.

Remember this summer when a guy threatened to sue or press charges against Kobe Bryant for ripping a cell phone out of his hand in a San Diego church? Nothing is going to come of that.

Miami Heat coach Erik Spoelstra sat down with Shane Battier to talk about Battier finding his game with the Heat and breaking out of his slump.

Here are the details on the special shoes Stephen Curry is wearing to keep his ankle from rolling over again.

Steve Nash’s 38 best assists, as ranked by SLAM.

Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson will be in Orlando during the All-Star festivities to talk to David Stern about the progress in Sacramento on a new arena. They may not like to hear this in Orange County, but the March 1 deadline for financing will be extended.

Kings rookie Isaiah Thomas is playing through a bone chip fracture in his left hand (non-shooting, but still).

An interesting Q&A with Mark Cuban where he talks about a lot of things, including the NBA. He doesn’t love the new CBA.

Another Q&A, this one with the Sixers Jrue Holiday.

Kris Humphries wants cameras and media outlets like TMZ in the divorce court proceedings with wife Kim Kardashian to expose the truths of reality television. Oh, this is going to be ugly.

Next year I’m going to find out what bets Charles Barkley makes on the Super Bowl, then do the opposite.
http://sportsradiointerviews.com/2012/02/07/charles-barkley-loses-100000-on-the-super-bowl/

The Sixers have assigned Craig Brackins to the Maine Red Claws of the D-League.

The Lakers have waived Derrick Caracter, which was really a money move more than creating roster space.

The Rockets waived Jeff Adrien one day after he played pretty well when Samuel Dalembert was benched.

Kawhi Leonard returns Tuesday on minutes restriction

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The Spurs have been the Spurs this season, going 19-8 with an elite defense and offense that’s good enough to get them wins, thanks to LaMarcus Aldridge playing at an All-Star level.

Starting Tuesday, they add Kawhi Leonard back to the mix.

He will return to the lineup against Dallas, but will be on a minutes restriction, coach Gregg Popovich said on Tuesday. He would not say how many minutes, although around 20 seems a logical starting spot.

Leonard is one of the five best players in the NBA (and that may be selling him short). He averaged a career-high 25.5 points a game last season, he’s arguably the best perimeter defender in the NBA, and he finished third in the MVP voting last season.

However, there are going to be adjustments. LaMarcus Aldridge has been the focal point of the offense, but he could see fewer touches, particularly in crunch time. Kyle Anderson could see fewer minutes, and Rudy Gay may as well because Popovich liked some small-ball lineups last season with Leonard at the four. A lot of players will see their rotations change.

That said, it’s the Spurs. Do we really expect them to be anything but an incredibly good regular season team? One that is about to get better?

 

 

 

Pelicans’ Tony Allen out 3-4 weeks with fibula fracture

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The injuries just keep hitting the Pelicans. Guys like Solomon Hill and Alexis Ajinca are out for extended periods of time. Anthony Davis has missed four of the team’s last six games and is questionable for Wednesday night due to a left adductor injury.

Now comes the news that reserve guard Tony Allen will be out three to four weeks due to a nondisplaced left proximal fibula fracture, the team announced Tuesday. This is the part of the bone near the ankle.

Allen has played a limited role for New Orleans off the bench this season, averaging 12.4 minutes a game, and averaging 4.7 points. His reputation is that of a defensive stopper, and when he is on the court this season the Pelicans’ defense has been 5.6 points per 100 possessions better. However, father time has started to catch up with him and he is not the defender he once was.

Expect the minutes to bump up for Jrue Holiday and E'Twaun Moore with this injury, which is not a bad thing as they have played well (they were knocking down threes against the Rockets Monday like they were named Curry), plus Ian Clark could get a little more run.

Watch Kawhi Leonard chop boards ‘karate styyyle’ (video)

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Kawhi Leonard, enabled by the Spurs’ no-nonsense culture, is probably the NBA’s most boring superstar.

He’s widely recognized as the league’s best defender, and he has worked himself into an elite offensive threat. He has already won a Finals MVP, and regular-season MVP could eventually be in the cards.

But Leonard is notoriously reserved. For someone who has been on this stage for so long, we know little about him.

Except we now know he apparently likes karate.

Leonard:

Gonna chop y’all up. Look at all of us. Karate styyyle.

If “karate styyyle” doesn’t become Leonard’s catchphrase, I don’t even know what we’re doing.

Leonard will finally have the chance to chop up an NBA opponent tonight, when he makes his return from injury.

Michael C. Wright of ESPN:

Kevin Durant brings fan to tears with autographed shoes (video)

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Kevin Durant has become a villain to many.

Clearly not to this Warriors fan, though.