Allen Iverson

Friday And-1 links: What is Allen Iverson’s legacy?


Here is our regular 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 more than Republicans love bashing Obama… well, maybe not that much.

Just how good was Allen Iverson? Ethan Sherwood Strauss argues his style of game was bad for a generation of ballers to imitate.

• Iverson’s crossover would have been among the all-timers on this list, but who now has the NBA’s most signature moves.

• Nick Collison’s story about going with other NBA players to Kenya for UNICEF is eye-opening and a must-read.

• The Rockets have waived big man Sean Williams. The Timberwolves and others have some interest.

• The Bobcats hope they can reach Tyrus Thomas in a way previous coaches could not. Let’s just say a lot of the people who have worked with Thomas in the past had that same thought and wish. Yet here we are.

Take a look at some pictures of high schooler, pre-unibrow Anthony Davis.

• Darius Songaila, who played pretty well during the Olympics, is willing to take less money to play in the NBA (as opposed to contracts he’d get in Europe) to be closer to his child who lives here.

• This year the Lakers broadcasts in Los Angeles will move to the new Time Warner Cable SportsNet, which launches Oct. 1. You know, that crazy big local television that allows the Lakers to have a payroll $17 million more than any other team in the league next season. But there is an issue, the new channel does not have contracts to air on DirecTV, Verizon FIOS, AT&T U-Verse or any other cable outlet in the Southern California region that is not Time Warner. A lot of fans could find it hard to see Lakers games in Los Angeles. And people are getting worried about it.

• Yes, the Bobcats picked up Ramon Sessions, but don’t be surprised if Kemba Walker is the starting point guard.

• A fantastic story about the Lakers Steve Blake, who sponsors a child in Rwanda, going with his wife to meet the girl and see how she lives.

• Patrick Ewing is taking a year off coaching and will try to relaunch his “Ewing Athletics” shoe brand.

• Celtics assistant GM Mike Zarren has taken himself out of the running for the 76ers GM job.

• Remember how the Warriors were taking to hold their draft position last year and keep their pick? Well, they are giving up a lot of picks in the next couple years as well.

• Hilton Armstrong has reached a deal with Panathinaikos in Greece.

What championship hangover? Cavaliers rout Knicks on ring night in Cleveland.

CLEVELAND, OH - OCTOBER 25:  LeBron James #23 of the Cleveland Cavaliers finishes off a fast break with a dunk in the third quarter as Carmelo Anthony #7 of the New York Knicks watches on October 25, 2016 at Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, Ohio. Cleveland defeated New York 117-88. 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 Jamie Sabau/Getty Images)
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There’s a good reason LeBron James has been to six straight NBA Finals. It’s not all about his incredible physical gifts. It’s not about the quality of his teammates.

It’s about will.

On a night when a lot of teams play like their hungover — the night they get their championship rings and a banner is raised to the rafters — LeBron played harder than anyone and pulled his team along.

LeBron had a triple-double — 19 points, 14 assists, 11 rebounds — and led the Cavaliers to an easy win over the Knicks, 117-86. Kyrie Irving had 29 points — 19 in the third — and Kevin Love added 23 in the win.

But mostly it was the Cavaliers’ offense getting whatever shot it wanted and the Knicks watching dunks from up close.

Over the course of this season, these Knicks will evolve into something better than they showed opening night. No Derrick Rose (trial) and no Joakim Noah (injury) meant the Knicks starting five didn’t have a lot of cohesion and chemistry from the start.

After a sluggish first five minutes by both teams — they were a combined 6-of-22 shooting to open the game — the Cavaliers slowly started to create a little space behind 10 first quarter points from Love. That lead really started to grow as the Knicks bench came in and went 0-of-6 shooting to end the quarter, with Brandon Jennings making questionable decisions. Tack on seven Knick turnovers and the first and they were down 10 after 12 minutes.

The Cavs were in control through much of the second quarter until the Knicks went on a 10-0 run to make it a game again. It was Derrick Rose and Carmelo Anthony driving the team — they shot a combined 12-of-20 in the first half, the rest of the Knicks were 5-of-23. It was 48-45 Cavaliers at the break.

In the third quarter the Cavaliers starters cranked it up behind Kyrie Irving and tighter defense — the third quarter saw Kyrie Irving with 19 points and the entire Knicks team with 19. It was 82-64 Cavs after three and the celebration was on.

Kristaps Porzingis showed some moments but his 16 points came on 5-of-13 shooting. Anthony had 19 points on 18 shots. Rose had 17 points but four turnovers and one assist. Brandon Jennings came off the bench to shoot 1-of-7. It was not their best night.

For the Cavs, it was one to remember — the first banner in 52 years went up.

Did we mention LeBron James was dunking all over Knicks? Watch for yourself.


LeBron James isn’t the only story out of the NBA season opener — Kyrie Irving had 29 points, Kevin Love had 23, Carmelo Anthony and Derrick Rose were shotmaking.

But mostly, LeBron James was dunking. And racking up a triple-double (19 points, 14 assists, 11 rebounds). But mostly just dunking. Like you see above. Or there is this alley-oop.

Or, there was this putback throwdown.

And we can throw in a block on Courtney Lee just for fun.

Cavaliers moving ball, LeBron James dunking in season opener

CLEVELAND, OH - OCTOBER 25:  LeBron James #23 of the Cleveland Cavaliers looks on in the first quarter against the New York Knicks at Quicken Loans Arena on October 25, 2016 in Cleveland, Ohio.  (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
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The Cavaliers were not in mid-season form on opening night — they started the game 3-of-12 from the floor and were 4-of-21 from three in the first half.

But they were showing flashes.

Like the LeBron James dunk above. Or this stretch of ball movement below.

The Cavaliers led the Knicks 48-45 at the half.

Watch LeBron James’ speech after getting his ring in Cleveland


“At this point, if you’re not from here, live here, play here, dedicate yourself to Cleveland, then it makes no sense for you to live at this point — Cleveland against the world!”

And with that, the Q went nuts.

LeBron James and the Cavaliers got their rings and raised a banner in Cleveland — the first title banner in that city in 52 seasons (although the Indians are trying to have their say on the matter across the street). It was emotional for everyone in the building, and particularly the hometown boy LeBron.

Check out the full ring ceremony.