Friday And-1 links: Jeremy Lin has a jersey made of fruit roll-ups

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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) — done in bullet point form. Because bloggers love bullet points.

• Jeremy Lin has a special jersey made out of fruit roll-ups. Yes, I’m serious, look at the picture.

• Metta World Peace will appear on Conan O’Brien next week. He had been scheduled to appear the night the suspension came down for the elbow to James Harden’s head, but he backed out. This is his make up.

• Some Pacers players — Danny Granger, Kyrylo Fesenko — got into an idiotic late night standoff at a club in Orlando.

• Rajon Rondo with a hip-hop track? Yup.

• Gregg Popovich doesn’t heap a lot of praise on rookies, which tells you how Kawhi Leonard has played.

• How the Lakers are running a lot of pretty half pick-and-roll sets to keep Arron Afflalo off Kobe Bryant. IT’s working.

• When Andrew Bynum gets position deep on the low block, get the man the rock.

• Derrick Rose is holding off on his knee surgery for a couple of weeks until all the swelling goes down.

• Andrei Kirilenko himself has now said it is “not true” that he has a deal with the Nets. Okay. I’m just saying there’s a lot of smoke for no fire.

• Carlos Delfino had sports hernia surgery Thursday, he should be out a couple of months but be ready for training camp.

• How Grant Hill bounces back from knee surgery will have more to do with his return to the Suns than anything else, according to the team president.

• Baron Davis is hoping to avoid offseason back surgery. I imagine so. Do you trust him to follow through and do his rehab properly?

Grading all the Golden State Warriors players. Klay Thompson gets a B+.

• Looking at what New Jersey Nets players will be back next season.

• ESPN’s Bill Simmons had to withdraw his MVP vote for LeBron James because he had bet on the race.

Tracking all the assists John Wall could have had with more help.

• There is a disproportionate amount of 7-footers in the United States who make their living in the NBA.

• Watch Enes Kanter drop the mic. Hat tip to The Basketball Post.

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?

Hawks’ DeAndre’ Bembry out with fractured wrist

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In their season opener Wednesday, Atlanta second-year man DeAndre’ Bembry came off the bench and played 17:45, scored six points and was +13 on the night. It was a good start to his career.

But now he is going to miss some time with a fractured wrist.

Bembry underwent an MRI, which revealed a fracture in his right wrist, the Hawks announced Friday. He will return to Atlanta with the team (the Hawks lost to the Hornets Friday night) and will meet with team doctors at the Emory Orthopaedics & Spine Center on Monday. His status will be updated after that.

“We just may play some other guys more, we may use some of the young guys,” Hawks coach Mike Budenholzer told the AP before Friday night’s game. “We’ll just figure it out tonight and as we move forward. I don’t think there’s anything guaranteed for anybody, it’s unfortunate for DeAndre’ and for us.”

 

Danny Ainge says Celtics will apply for Disabled Player Exception

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It’s not likely Gordon Hayward returns this season. His agent said as much, although a return in March is not out of the question. (It’s better PR wise for the Celtics to say he is out for the season, then if he returns early great, it’s better than setting a deadline he doesn’t meet.)

With that, the Celtics are going to apply for the Disabled Player Exception, which could help them land a replacement player, Danny Ainge told Gary Washburn of the Boston Globe.

President of basketball operations Danny Ainge told the Globe on Friday the club is applying for the Disabled Player Exception, which would provide the Celtics $8.4 million to pursue a player to fill Hayward’s roster spot.

“We’re in the process of doing that,’’ Ainge said. “We have a while to do that. There’s no urgency, but we will apply for that.”

There are limits to what that money can get the Celtics. The money is the same as the mid-level exception, the Celtics can go over the cap to use it, and the player can be obtained via free agency or trade. However, the player must be in the last year of his contract.

It gives the Celtics options. It also does not mean Hayward cannot return, it only means NBA-approved doctors determined he is not likely to return before a mid-June deadline.

Kings hire former WNBA Seattle coach Jenny Boucek as assistant

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The NBA now has a third female assistant coach.

The first was Becky Hammon, who has been part of Gregg Popovich’s Spurs staff for several years (and has coached their Summer League team). The second was Nancy Leiberman, who has been on the staff in Sacramento for a couple of seasons now.

Now the Kings have hired former Seattle Storm coach Jenny Boucek as an assistant coach on Dave Joerger’s staff. She will work as an assistant player development coach.

A former WNBA player in the league’s inaugural season, the past three years she has coached the WNBA’s Seattle Storm (she was fired midway through the last season), and prior to that had been the head coach of the Sacramento Monarchs from 2007-09.