Thursday And-1 links: Relive roller coaster 76ers season

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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.

• Philly surprised people out of the gate this season, lost their way for a stretch then caught a break and had a nice run in the playoffs. Here’s your chance to relive it through a great story at CSNPhilly.com.

• You want to take on Kobe Bryant in a game of H-O-R-S-E? You can for charity. If you pony up.

• Allen Iverson and his ex-wife are having a nasty little battle.

• Want to see who the best coaches in the NBA are? Watch how teams perform coming out of timeouts.

• There’s an overseas report Nenad Krstic has an offer from the Nets for next season.

• The Clippers had a great playoff run as well, what did they learn from it?

• Kevin Love is over his concussion symptoms and will be ready to go for the Olympic training camp this summer, and he will play a big role for Team USA this summer.

• Pacers’ coach Frank Vogel looks ahead at the future of the Pacers. Think more Paul George.

• Larry Bird wants to help Vogel out by getting owner Herb Simon to spend more on salary next season.

• Maybe Simons will spend on Deron Williams? Great fit for them, they can make the max offer, but would he go?

• The Trail Blazers have inked a great affiliation with Idaho of the D-League.

• Portland also is working out some big men as they head toward the draft with their two lottery picks.

• Here’s another Brandon Roy comeback rumor. This time as a fit in Los Angeles.

• Speaking of the NBA Draft Lottery, Jeff Van Gundy thinks the Bobcats tanked the entire season.

• Golden State is lucky to have kept their No. 7 pick in the draft, but this is a team that needs a veteran presence, so don’t be shocked if they shop it around.

• The Cavaliers are not shopping around their No. 4 pick.

• Some guy tried to copyright “let’s go Thunder.” The Supreme Court shot him down.

• Andray Blatche didn’t like being booed by Washington fans this year. Understandable. My advice is to play better.

• Might the Raptors try to trade the No. 8 pick?

• J.J. Redick says again that this season the Magic locker room was not a great place to be.

• Former Magic big man James Augustine has signed to play with BC Khimki Moscow.

Remembering Notre Dame, Laker legend Tommy “the hawk” Hawkins

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Tommy Hawkins passed away recently at the age of 80.

The former NBA player was the first black athlete to earn All-America honors in basketball at Notre Dame (he still holds the school’s total rebounds record), was drafted in the first round, and went on to have a 10-year NBA career playing for the Minneapolis/Los Angeles Lakers as well as the Cincinnati Royals. Los Angeles fans may also remember him as the long time director of communications for the Los Angeles Dodgers after his playing days ended.

The NBA put together this well done video look back at Hawkins’ career.

Celtics’ Brad Stevens said early September tests will show if Thomas ready for camp

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Isaiah Thomas said he expects to be ready for the Celtics’ training camp next month. The guard’s All-NBA season came to an early end in the playoffs when he aggravated a labral tear in his right hip initially suffered back in March. At least the injury did not require surgery.

Players are also about the worst judges of when they will recover from an injury. They pretty much all think they are invincible and will be healthy faster than doctors predict.

Coaches tend to be more pragmatic. Take Boston’s Brad Stevens, who told Chris Mannix on The Vertical Podcast that tests in a couple of weeks will show if Thomas is ready for camp.

“He has another follow-up and another scan in the early part of September. Obviously, it’s been a lot of appropriate rest, a lot of rehab. There have been some good strides here certainly in the last month or few weeks, but we’re not going to know that until after that early September timeframe.”

The Celtics are understandably going to be cautious with Thomas, while Thomas wants to prove he is healthy and has no ill effects from the injury as he enters a contract year (one where he expects to get PAID). Also, the Celtics could use him in camp as they start to figure out how he and Gordon Hayward can share playmaking duties.

Still, from the outset, the timelines have suggested he should be ready for camp in late September. Coaches are just cautious on these things by nature.

Allen Iverson predicts LeBron James will win MVP

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LeBron James has four NBA MVP trophies in his case. (Does he keep that case in his home in Akron or the one in Los Angeles… that’s a question for another day.) Only Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (six) and Michael Jordan (five) have more.

Could LeBron James add a fifth to his case this season?

Allen Iverson said yes at last weekend’s Big3 playoffs in Seattle.

LeBron was fourth in preseason odds to win the MVP at 15/2, behind Russell Westbrook, Kevin Durant, and Kawhi Leonard.

To me, LeBron could be a good bet. If/when Kyrie Irving is traded, the chances of LeBron getting the MVP go up. If LeBron puts up impressive numbers (again) and leads a depleted Cavaliers team to a top two seed in the East, he is certainly going to be in consideration. And should be.

It’s a long season, and personally, I think you need to get midway through the season before seriously considering the year-end awards. But history says LeBron will be in the mix, and Allen Iverson could be proven prophetic.

Phoenix Suns with quality solar eclipse joke on Twitter

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With the cooler-than-I-expected solar eclipse on Monday came a lot of bad solar eclipse jokes on Twitter. Because that’s what Twitter does. Especially the NBA Twitterverse. We knew a lot of “where on the flat earth will Kyrie Irving watch the eclipse?” jokes were coming.

There were a couple of good ones, however.

Appropriately, the Phoenix Suns won the day.

One personal favorite here, an old meme that never goes out of style.