Report: Indiana’s Cody Zeller to declare for NBA draft

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This is another case where the decision shouldn’t be a surprise to even the most diehard fan in Bloomington.

Indiana’s star center Cody Zeller will declare for the NBA draft at a press conference Wednesday afternoon, reports Bob Kravitz of the Indy Star.

DraftExpress currently has Zeller going No. 6 in the upcoming draft. He joins fellow Hoosier Victor Oladipo in this draft class.

He’s got legit NBA center size at 7’0”, 240 pounds, but he also moves well and can get out in transition. He will provide offense off the bench as an NBA rookie — he has great skill and touch around the basket. Big men who can put up points are always at a premium in the NBA.

But there are questions, and we saw them all raised in the NCAA Tournament. There are doubts about whether he can handle the physicality of the NBA and still be effective. Against longer, athletic front line of Syracuse he did struggle as they got physical with him (he’s not going to get those calls as an NBA rookie, either) and it reinforced questions about him.

Don’t be shocked if he slides down the draft a little, but still not likely out of the top 10. And he could get that strength and in a couple years be a solid NBA rotation player with a long career.

Robin Lopez pushes short floater over backboard (video)

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Robin Lopez had reason to be upset from the Bulls’ Game 5 loss to the Celtics last night.

This miss was all on him.

Dwyane Wade plays the laziest defense you’ll ever see (video)

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Dwyane Wade (26 points, 11 rebounds, eight assists) was the Bulls’ best player in their Game 5 loss to the Celtics last night.

But the 35-year-old guard clearly didn’t go all out on every possession.

Players can justify not closing out by claiming they were prioritizing rebounding position. Wade clearly has no such excuse.

Video Breakdown: Clippers use JJ Redick in split cut to fool Jazz at 3-point line

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The Los Angeles Clippers dropped Game 5 to the Utah Jazz on Tuesday night, and find themselves down 3-2 as they head back to Salt Lake City for Game 6. The Clippers have had to deal with Utah’s formidable defense, so much so that they’ve built in counters to Jazz defenders overplaying shooters like JJ Redick.

One example of this countering method could be found in Game 3, when the Clippers ran a split cut for Redick. Instead of fighting endlessly around screens for a 3-point shot as you might expect, LA took the easy route and simply cut Redick to the basket for an easy layup as a means to take advantage of an overeager defender.

We’ve talked about the Split Cut here on NBA Playbook before. The Los Angeles Lakers used it earlier in the season to beat the Golden State Warriors, the team that uses the split cut perhaps the most out of any team in the NBA.

Other teams, including the Portland Trail Blazers, have adapted the Warriors’ use of the split cut as a counter for their own offense this season, which is a testament to just how useful it is.

If you need a reminder, a split cut all about a screener coming up to screen, then cutting toward the basket before his screen action fully takes place. It’s about timing, and catching defenders off guard when they go to set up their recover positions for screens.

For a full breakdown on the split cut and how the Clippers used it, watch the video above.

John Wall wears cape to postgame press conference (video)

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John Wall has been super, averaging 27 points and 11 assists while leading the Wizards to a 3-2 lead over the Hawks in the first-round.