Kirilenko, Pekovic forced Alexey Shved to get a haircut


We’re not exactly hair experts here at PBT, but we noticed that Russian rookie guard Alexey Shved entered the NBA with kind of a Ricky Rubio mop-head look going on. It worked for him, I guess.

But we noticed as Shved was putting up 10 points in the fourth quarter for Minnesota to lead their 22-point comeback win over the Nets Monday that he had a new, shorter look going on.

What gives? Is that what caused the comeback?

We don’t know about the second part of that, but we know you can thank Andrei Kirilenko and Nikola Pekovic for the sheering. That’s what Pekovic told Fox Sports North after the win (hat tip to The Basketball Jones).

“You think because of that we win?” Pekovic asked. “Me and AK, we make him to cut his hair. Now he look like a man.”

If you hadn’t seen Shved precut, he went with the Lou Amundson pulled back look. Which is apparently unmanly for men from Russia or former Soviet Bloc countries. Now he has a cut that looks like half the guys at the University of Minnesota. Which I guess is manly.

But if Non… er, Pekovic tells you to get a haircut — or pretty much anything else — you do it. Smart move, rookie.

Watch Kobe Bryant’s entire retirement-announcement press conference (video)

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Kobe Bryant reflected, told stories and showed his emotions.

For nearly 25 minutes, the Lakers star talked about his pending retirement. It was pretty cool.

Report: Wizards signing Ryan Hollins

Blake Griffin, Ryan Hollins
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Nene hurt his calf. Drew Gooden is banged up. Martell Webster is out for the season.

Those are three players the Wizards expected to play power forward this season.

So, Washington – which has lost four straight – will bring in another big man: Ryan Hollins.

Shams Charania of Yahoo Sports:

The Wizards have a full roster of 15 players. They don’t qualify for a hardship exemption, which a team gets if four players have missed three straight games and will continue to be out. Only Webster and Alan Anderson definitely fit that bill. Gooden, who has missed five straight, might. But it’s unclear both how many of those absences were due to injury and when he’ll return.

So, Washington will have to waive someone to sign Hollins now. It’ll probably be Webster, whose $5,845,250 2016-17 salary is just $2.5 million guaranteed. If he’s out for the year and the Wizards plan to drop him by the summer to clear cap space, why not just do it now?

Hollins is more center than power forward and doesn’t appear to fit well with Marcin Gortat. But at this point, Washington just needs big bodies. Hollins – a nine-year veteran who plays decent interior defense, lacks offensive skill and rebounds poorly for his 7-foot frame – is at least that.

Dwight Howard crushes Kristaps Porzingis with dunk (video)

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Sometimes – as Kristaps Porzingis sees against Dwight Howard – it’s more flattering just to play James Harden-level defense.