Monday And-1 links: A couple rumors, Kobe’s mask, more

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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).

The Clippers and Timberwolves have some interest in Jamal Crawford of Portland and trade talks may follow. Crawford was brought in after the Brandon Roy retirement (Roy says the Blazers pushed him to step down so they could get Crawford). Crawford has been pretty much himself this season, it just has not fit like the Blazers expected.

Beno Udrih wouldn’t mind a trade out of Milwaukee. Actually, he’d really like one.

The Golden State Warriors need a big man and might make a run at JaVale McGee, but not until this summer. And no, they don’t want Andray Blatche, so don’t ask.

Kobe Bryant may be playing in a new-look mask next game.

LeBron James is endorsing Dunkin’ Donuts in Asia. They have Dunkin’ Donuts in Asia?

Tweet from Metta World Peace on Sunday after his best game of the season: “I miss the old Ron artest…. Good to be back…”

Stephen Curry will be a game-time decision Monday due to his ongoing foot injury.

The Trail Blazers should have Marcus Camby back on Monday.

Tim Duncan was playing through the flu on Monday.

Just a reminder from the Charlotte Observer: “In 2005, then-general manager/coach Bernie Bickerstaff turned down a trade that would have sent point guard Deron Williams to Charlotte.” Williams dropped 57 on the Bobcats Sunday.

Orlando is going to bid to host the 2016 NBA All-Star Game.

The Mavericks have recalled Sean Williams from D-League.

Knicks center Jerome Jordan has been recalled from the D-League.

Nets’ national anthem singer kneels to finish performance

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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

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DALLAS (AP) — Dallas Mavericks rookie point guard Dennis Smith Jr. missed Friday’s game against the Sacramento Kings with swelling in his left knee.

Smith, the ninth pick in the NBA draft out of North Carolina State, had 16 points and 10 assists in the Mavericks’ season-opening loss to the Atlanta Hawks.

Smith participated in the Mavericks’ shootaround on Friday morning and was a late scratch. It is not known if Smith will play Saturday for Dallas.

The Mavericks were also missing guard Devin Harris, who was granted leave of absence after his brother died on Thursday.

Watch Lonzo Ball’s 29 point, 11 rebound, 9 assist game Friday night

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This was more of what fans expected from Lonzo Ball.

After a rough first game against the Clippers — with Patrick Beverley in 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

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Through the first couple games of the season, Giannis Antetokounmpo has put up impressive numbers — he dropped 34 points, 8 rebounds, and 8 assists on the Cavaliers Friday night.

But the Cavaliers still have LeBron James.

He had 24 points and 8 assists, leading Cleveland to the win.

LeBron also reminded the Greek Freak just how good a rim protector he is. Few people can slow Antetokounmpo on the drive, but LeBron is one of them.

Is it too early to root for a Cavs vs. Bucks playoff series?