Kobe Bryant Derek Fisher

Thursday And-1 links: Kobe talks playing against Fisher

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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) — laid out in bullet points. Because god is a bullet (have mercy on us everyone).

• Next Thursday night Derek Fisher will pull on a Thunder jersey then walk out on the court to take on the Lakers at Staples Center. Kobe Bryant admits that will be emotional.

• Here is the reaction of other Lakers to seeing Fisher in an Oklahoma City uniform.

• The Lakers are making moves that cut costs (trading Fisher to the Rockets saved them million). Why would the richest team in the league to do that? Because their bills are about to go up.

• Whatever happens the last month of the season, it will not change Deron Williams’ mind about the future.

• Dallas has one lineup that may be playing better ball than any unit in the league.

• The Suns and Jazz are trying to fight their way into the Western Conference playoffs.

• Nate McMillan cried when the Blazers fired him. Some will mock him for it, but I think it shows he cares and is invested. The league needs more coaches who care like that.

• On Sunday Danilo Gallinari made an amazing behind-the-back pass against the Celtics. In a bit of Sports Science, here is a breakdown of the physics of that pass.

• Brian Cook says he does not want to be bought out of his contract by the Wizards. Would anyone notice either way?

• Ricky Rubio had his knee surgery on Wednesday. It was successful.

• Coca Cola has signed a deal to put Chinese language advertising in Madison Square Garden to capitalize on

• Kings sign G/F Terrence Williams to a 10-day contract.

• The Warriors are expected to ink Mickell Gladness to a 10-day contract Thursday.

• Rockets assign C Greg Smith to the D-League.

Report: Bulls hire North Carolina State’s Bobby Lutz as D-League head coach

WORCESTER, MA - MARCH 18:  Charlotte 49ers coach Bobby Lutz looks up in the first half a game against the N.C. State Wolfpack during the first round of the NCAA Men's Basketball Championship at the DCU Center March 18, 2005 in Worcester, Massachusetts.  (Photo By Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
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The Chicago Bulls are one of the teams getting a D-League affiliate franchise this season. The Windy City Bulls will play in the suburb of Hoffman Estates, and now they have a head coach: North Carolina State assistant Bobby Lutz.

Via Upside & Motor‘s Chris Reichert:

Lutz was previously linked to the Bulls’ D-League job in July but there was confusion as to whether he would actually get the job. Now, it appears he has. And he has familiarity with the coaching staff, having served as an assistant coach at Iowa State under Fred Hoiberg in 2010-11, prior to going to NC State.

Evan Fournier pokes fun at his ‘NBA 2K’ likeness

OAKLAND, CA - MARCH 07:  Evan Fournier #10 of the Orlando Magic dribbles the ball against the Golden State Warriors at ORACLE Arena on March 7, 2016 in Oakland, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
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The release of NBA 2K17, the latest edition of the popular 2K video-game series, is less than a month away. Players are starting to get their likenesses in the game, as well as their player ratings, and tweet them out. Magic forward Evan Fournier wasn’t too happy with the way his came out.

Fournier’s countryman Rudy Gobert got in on the fun, too, changing his Twitter avatar to Fournier’s screenshot and encouraging others to do the same. He even created a hashtag for it.

At least they’re having fun with it.

Report: Sixers expected to waive Tibor Pleiss after trade with Jazz

PHILADELPHIA, PA - OCTOBER 30: Tibor Pleiss #21 of the Utah Jazz controls the ball in the game against the Philadelphia 76ers on October 30, 2015 at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)
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On Friday, the Jazz traded German center Tibor Pleiss to the Sixers along with two second-round picks for Kendall Marshall. The big draw of the trade for Philly was the picks, and Pleiss is not expected to stay with the Sixers, according to Comcast SportsNet Philadelphia’s Jessica Camerato.

Pleiss had a forgettable season with Utah, and the Sixers have a glut of bigs including Nerlens Noel, Jahlil Okafor, Joel Embiid and Dario Saric. It would have been virtually impossible for Pleiss to crack the rotation, and it’s unlikely another team picks up his contract, which has $3 million guaranteed this season.

Jordan releases new Russell Westbrook ad, may include a shot at Kevin Durant

OKLAHOMA CITY, OK - MAY 28:  Kevin Durant #35 of the Oklahoma City Thunder (L) and Russell Westbrook #0 look on during a press conference after the Golden State Warriors defeated the Oklahoma City Thunder 108-101 in game six of the Western Conference Finals during the 2016 NBA Playoffs at Chesapeake Energy Arena on May 28, 2016 in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by J Pat Carter/Getty Images)
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As a Jordan Brand athlete, Russell Westbrook is under the same Nike umbrella as former teammate Kevin Durant. But his latest Jordan spot, released Friday, has a very pointed tagline: “Some run, some make runways.”

Given the circumstances, it’s hard to interpret that as anything other than a reference to Durant signing with the Warriors and Westbrook signing an extension with the Thunder.