Carmelo Anthony has a giant painting of himself hanging over his fireplace, because of course he does

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From the always-hilarious Dan Devine of Yahoo! Sports’ Ball Don’t Lie Blog:

Carmelo Anthony’s wife, La La Anthony (née Vazquez), recently spoke with the New York Post about her reality TV show, her role in the upcoming film “Think Like a Man,” and the couple’s place in the Hell’s Kitchen section of Manhattan. The only piece of critical information in the Post’s story is that, as you can see above, the Anthonys have a huge painting of Carmelo Anthony’s head hanging above their fireplace.

From the Post:

How much input has Carmelo had in the design of your home or did you manage the project yourself?

Believe it or not, he has more input and gets more involved than I do. He was really into working with the decorator, Alicia Darby, who also decorated our home in LA.

Have you recently purchased any artwork? What is your favorite piece?

This past Christmas, we purchased a huge, modern picture of my husband from the artist Paul Gerben, whose studio is located in SoHo. It was great to be directly in touch with the artist himself, which enabled us to create this fantastic, very large and abstract piece that we love.

We could try and look at this painting as some sort of window into Anthony’s true character, or we could just come to the agreement that putting a giant purple painting of yourself in a tuxedo and sunglasses above your fireplace is hilarious. I prefer the latter, if only because I like imagining how awkward it must be for the Anthony family’s houseguests when they have to compliment the giant purple painting of Carmelo staring at them behind sunglasses.

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?