Reggie Miller

Tuesday And-1 links: Who are the best shooters never to win three-point contest?

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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 like Guy Fieri loves bacon and bad hair.

• Who are the best three-point shooters never to win the All-Star Weekend Three-Point shootout? I think Reggie Miller wins that contest, but there are some good names on the All Ball list.

• Video of James Harden making it rain at a strip club. And no,I’m not posting that video.

• Rudy Gay, John Wall and a great list of players who need to step up this season (including a few who already got paid on potential).

• Mark Cuban says he hopes the eight newcomers to the Mavericks roster will stick with the team for a long time. Which is the right thing to say, but he will kick them all to the curb this summer for a shot at someone like Chris Paul. (As he should.)

• Ray Allen is already down in Miami working on his shot.

• A couple of high-end children’s sporting good shops in Manhattan are going to have 3-D Carmelo Anthonys to help guide people around the store and answer questions. No, I am not making that up.

• How the divorce of the Maloof sister — you know, the one on Real Housewives of Beverly Hills — impacts the Kings. Which is not really that much save just more embarrassment for a family that has had plenty of it.

• Dwight Howard’s rehab has reached the point he has stepped on to a court. Expect the Lakers to bring him along slowly, it’s about June not November.

• You can trade in your guns for Memphis Grizzlies tickets. No, you do not get the weapons back if they lose.

• A fantastic, even handed look at what it has taken to get this far with the Seattle plan for a new arena from friend of this blog Kevin Pelton.

• Timberwolves big man Nikola Pekovic has los lost almost 10 pounds this summer and thinks that will help him stay more healthy next season.

• Chris Bosh scooping ice cream for charity. There’s a good joke in there but I just can’t find it. At least he wasn’t hanging at clubs with James Harden.

• Erik Spoelstra says a lot of nice things about the potential of Mickell Gladness. America shrugs.

• The Heat are bringing in Garrett Temple as training camp fodder.

• The Thunder are apparently bringing in Andy Rautins as camp fodder.

• The Knicks are bringing in swingman Mychel Thompson, center Henry Sims and guard Oscar Bellfield as camp fodder.

• Former Celtics first rounder J.R. Giddens has signed with Centrale del Latte Brescia in the Italian league.

• Otis Smith (you last remember him as the Magic GM until he was canned) is going into the Florida Association of Basketball Coaches Court of Legends.

• The mother of Pacer and former Tar Heal Tyler Hansbrough may be part of a fundraising scandal at the university.

• It’s not NBA but I find it interesting: The widespread cheating scandal at Harvard has reached into the basketball team.

• Zach Lowe, one of the very best NBA bloggers out there, is leaving SI. This would make me really sad if I was not going to be able to read his stuff at Grantland soon.

• As a final bonus, here is Scottie Pippen talking Phil Jackson, Derrick Rose, superteams and more.

Kings GM Vlade Divac on Rudy Gay’s communication complaints: ‘He has my number’

Vlade Divac
AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli
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Rudy Gay complained about how the Kings are handling the trade rumors swirling around him.

Sacramento general manager Vlade Divac, via James Ham of CSN California:

“He has my number,” Divac told CSN California. “If I do something, I will call him. Obviously, if I didn’t call him, we didn’t do anything.”

“Look, I was a player, 16-17 years in the league, nobody called me everyday and tell me what management is doing,” Divac said. “Management was doing their job. If something big happened, they called and told me. Obviously, nothing big happened (so) I’m not going to call anybody.”

I suppose Divac can take that tack. He’s obviously not obligated to provide Gay regular updates.

But the Kings already have a reputation for putting their players in bleak positions. This doesn’t help.

Even if Divac feels calling Gay is going out of his way, so what? The alternative — Gay either coming to training camp unhappy or spreading word of Sacramento’s mistreatment of players to his new teammates after a trade — is far worse.

It’s not enough for Divac to just wait for Gay to call him — especially because Divac might not be as reliable with the phone as he thinks.

Union to fund health insurance for retired NBA players

LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 23:  Professional basketball player Chris Paul commentates during the CP3 PBA Celebrity Invitational Charity Bowling Tournament presented by GoBowling.com at Lucky Strike Lanes at L.A. Live on February 23, 2016 in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Imeh Akpanudosen/Getty Images for Professional Bowlers Association)
Imeh Akpanudosen/Getty Images for Professional Bowlers Association
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The National Basketball Players Association has talked for more than a year about covering medical expenses for retired players.

Today, the union announced a formal plan.

NBPA release:

The National Basketball Players Association (NBPA) announced today that its player representatives have voted unanimously to fund health insurance for all retired NBA players with at least three years of service in the league. This program is the first of its kind among North American professional sports. It also exemplifies the NBPA’s focus on the health and welfare of its current, retired and future members.

“The game has never before been more popular, and all the players in our league today recognize that we’re only in this position because of the hard work and dedication of the men who came before us,” said Chris Paul, NBPA President and nine-time All-Star. “It’s important that we take care of our entire extended NBA family, and I’m proud of my fellow players for taking this unprecedented step to ensure the health and well-being of our predecessors.”

The unanimous vote – which took place during the NBPA Summer Meeting in New York on June 26 – established a multi-faceted health insurance program through UnitedHealthcare, the country’s leading health benefits provider. The current proposal includes:

  • Retired players with between three and six years of NBA service time but who are not yet eligible for Medicare would be offered a plan that includes medical, hospital and prescription drug coverage with modest out-of-pocket costs for deductibles and co-pays;

  • Those with between seven and nine years of service would be offered the same coverage with even lower out-of-pocket costs;

  • Retired players with at least 10 years of service would be offered the same coverage as the seven-to-nine year players, and would include coverage for their entire family;

  • Retired players with three-nine years of service who are eligible for Medicare would be offered a $0 deductible and $0 co-pay plan along with a low-cost prescription drug plan; those with 10+ years of service to receive this coverage for themselves and their spouse.

  • The open enrollment period for retired players would begin this fall, with coverage beginning on January 1, 2017.

This is a good thing.

It also could become a bargaining point in Collective Bargaining Agreement negotiations. Should current players face the entire burden of insuring retired players, or should owners split the cost? (The fact that the question is even being posed paints players in a positive light.)

But back to the bigger point: This is a good thing. It’ll help retired players who need it, retired players who helped position the current generation to afford this. Kudos to the union for stepping up.

Report: Bulls’ Cristiano Felicio ‘strong favorite’ to replace Anderson Varejao on Brazilian Olympic team

CHICAGO, IL - FEBRUARY 19: Cristiano Felicio #6 of the Chicago Bulls looks to pass against the Toronto Raptors at the United Center on February 19, 2016 in Chicago, Illinois. The Bulls defeated the Raptors 116-106. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using the photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images
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Warriors center Anderson Varejao will miss the Rio Olympics due to a back injury.

Where will Team Brazil turn now?

Likely to Bulls center Cristiano Felicio.

Marc Stein of ESPN:

Felicio came on strong late last season. He puts his 6-foot-10, 275-pound frame to good use protecting the paint and rebounding. He showed potential as passer and mid-range shooter, too.

At age 24, he’s a candidate to break out in the Olympics.

If he’s not ready, Brazil can turn to a steady veteran at center, Nene.

Report: Equipment staffer punched by Blake Griffin no longer works for Clippers

Los Angeles Clippers forward Blake Griffin stands on the court as equipment manager Matias Testi, left, stands behind the bench during the second half of an NBA basketball game, Thursday, Feb. 18, 2016, in Los Angeles. Griffin broke his hand last month when he punched Testi in the face. The Clippers won 105-86. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)
AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill
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Blake Griffin broke his hand punching Clippers equipment manager Matias Testi in January.

Make that former Clippers equipment manager Matias Testi.

TMZ:

The L.A. Clippers equipment staffer who was punched in the face by Blake Griffin during a fight in Toronto earlier this year is off the team — and will NOT be back for the ’16/’17 season … TMZ Sports has learned.

We spoke with a rep for the Clippers who confirmed Matias Testi “no longer works for the team.”

#Family