Linsanity cannot be stopped in New York… well, until Carmelo Anthony comes back and takes the ball out of Jeremy Lin’s hands. But we’re not going to worry about that yet.
The legend of Lin grew Friday night when he dropped 38 on the Lakers and led the Knicks to their fourth straight win while Carmelo Anthony and Amare Stoudemire are out of the lineup. New York cannot get enough of Lin, who has become the biggest thing in the city since “The Producers.”
Among those going crazy for Lin is Knicks superfan Spike Lee, which leads to this exchange with Golden State coach Mark Jackson, via Matt Steinmetz of CSNBayArea.com.
According to Jackson, Lee “thanked” Jackson for making Lin available so that the Knicks could pick him up.
“I got a text message from Spike Lee this morning,” Jackson said after Warriors’ practice on Saturday. “I had nothing to do with Jeremy Lin. I never saw him do a layup. So for the people … stop asking me. He never practiced for us so leave me out of it.”
Jackson is right. Lin was let go by the Warriors before training camp because they needed his salary (just $300,000) to go into the big free agent offer the team made to DeAndre Jordan (a $10 million a year deal the Clippers matched).
Besides, Lin never played this well in Golden State.
Thursday night the Lakers were the first team to play Lin by the book — make him beat you with his shaky jump shot. Except Lin did — he was 4-of-6 from 16 feet out to the arc and 2-of-4 from three.
The legend of Lin just continues to grow.
The National Basketball Players Association has talked for more than a year about covering medical expenses for retired players.
Today, the union announced a formal plan.
The National Basketball Players Association (NBPA) announced today that its player representatives have voted unanimously to fund health insurance for all retired NBA players with at least three years of service in the league. This program is the first of its kind among North American professional sports. It also exemplifies the NBPA’s focus on the health and welfare of its current, retired and future members.
“The game has never before been more popular, and all the players in our league today recognize that we’re only in this position because of the hard work and dedication of the men who came before us,” said Chris Paul, NBPA President and nine-time All-Star. “It’s important that we take care of our entire extended NBA family, and I’m proud of my fellow players for taking this unprecedented step to ensure the health and well-being of our predecessors.”
The unanimous vote – which took place during the NBPA Summer Meeting in New York on June 26 – established a multi-faceted health insurance program through UnitedHealthcare, the country’s leading health benefits provider. The current proposal includes:
Retired players with between three and six years of NBA service time but who are not yet eligible for Medicare would be offered a plan that includes medical, hospital and prescription drug coverage with modest out-of-pocket costs for deductibles and co-pays;
Those with between seven and nine years of service would be offered the same coverage with even lower out-of-pocket costs;
Retired players with at least 10 years of service would be offered the same coverage as the seven-to-nine year players, and would include coverage for their entire family;
Retired players with three-nine years of service who are eligible for Medicare would be offered a $0 deductible and $0 co-pay plan along with a low-cost prescription drug plan; those with 10+ years of service to receive this coverage for themselves and their spouse.
The open enrollment period for retired players would begin this fall, with coverage beginning on January 1, 2017.
This is a good thing.
It also could become a bargaining point in Collective Bargaining Agreement negotiations. Should current players face the entire burden of insuring retired players, or should owners split the cost? (The fact that the question is even being posed paints players in a positive light.)
But back to the bigger point: This is a good thing. It’ll help retired players who need it, retired players who helped position the current generation to afford this. Kudos to the union for stepping up.
Warriors center Anderson Varejao will miss the Rio Olympics due to a back injury.
Where will Team Brazil turn now?
Likely to Bulls center Cristiano Felicio.
Marc Stein of ESPN:
Felicio came on strong late last season. He puts his 6-foot-10, 275-pound frame to good use protecting the paint and rebounding. He showed potential as passer and mid-range shooter, too.
At age 24, he’s a candidate to break out in the Olympics.
If he’s not ready, Brazil can turn to a steady veteran at center, Nene.
Blake Griffin broke his hand punching Clippers equipment manager Matias Testi in January.
Make that former Clippers equipment manager Matias Testi.
The L.A. Clippers equipment staffer who was punched in the face by Blake Griffin during a fight in Toronto earlier this year is off the team — and will NOT be back for the ’16/’17 season … TMZ Sports has learned.
We spoke with a rep for the Clippers who confirmed Matias Testi “no longer works for the team.”
The report that Kevin Durant told Russell Westbrook he’d re-sign with the Thunder before choosing the Warriors?
Royce Young of ESPN:
I misspoke in saying that Durant specifically told Westbrook he was coming back.