Report: Knicks expected to make contract offer for Elton Brand

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The Knicks can’t offer a lot of money, but they can offer a potentially bigger role on the team.

The Knicks have spoken to Elton Brand and are expected to make him a contract offer, tweets Jared Zwerling of ESPNNewYork.com. The mutual interest was confirmed by Howard Beck at the New York Times, although he says nothing is imminent (a deal couldn’t be signed until July 10, anyway).

Still, the Dallas Mavericks are considered the favorite to re-sign Brand. He played 21 minutes a game for them, averaging 7.2 points and 6 rebounds a game.

West grew up in New York, so there are ties there. Also, with the Knicks front court rotation after Carmelo Anthony and Tyson Chandler is a bit unsettled — Amar’e Stoudemire will be back but on a minutes limit, likely not playing back-to-backs — and then there is Andrea Bargnani, who will be hanging at the three point line. There are minutes to be had for Brand, who was solid if not spectacular last season.

The Dallas roster situation is a lot more fluid, it hinges on the mood and decision making of Dwight Howard.

The issue is money — the most the Knicks could offer is the taxpayer’s mid-level exception of $3.2 million. Brand wisely sounds like he is going to be patient and see what other offers come in before making his decision.

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.

Did you see Isaiah Thomas carry in Game 5? ‘No,’ says Fred Hoiberg, who walks off (video)

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Fred Hoiberg opened himself to clowning by complaining about Isaiah Thomas carrying.

So, the Bulls coach got clowned after the Celtics’ Game 5 win.

Jae Crowder leg-locks Robin Lopez (video)

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Late in the Celtics’ Game 5 win over the Bulls last night, Jae Crowder leg-locked Robin Lopez – the same dirty play that caused rancor for Matthew Dellavedova in the 2015 playoffs.

Lopez blocked Crowder’s shot, but the ball went to Al Horford, who attacked the basket. As Lopez tried to rotate to contest another shot, he couldn’t move. Crowder, who’d fallen to the floor, had him in a leg-lock. Lopez freed himself just in time to foul Horford.

Adding insult to avoided injury, Lopez got hit with a technical foul for complaining about the no-call.

I bet the league issues a technical foul on Crowder, too.