New York Knicks v Indiana Pacers - Game Four

Thursday night And-1 links: J.R. Smith is no longer a blond


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.

• The Knicks Sixth Man of the Year J.R. Smith dyed his hair blond this summer. Mike Woodson told him to change it back.

• Speaking of the Knicks, point guards killed their defense last season. At Knickerblogger they look at how New York might deal with that.

• Could LeBron James really play in the NFL?

• Tony Parker had pulled out of workouts with the French national team due to thigh pain, but he is back now. He is expected to play in EuroBasket.

• When the news broke yesterday the Sixers ownership group was looking to buy the NHL’s New Jersey Devils, a few people were asking if the Sixers were in danger of being moved. In a word, no. Would you really move a team out of Philly to Newark?

Great look at new Memphis coach Dave Joerger, and old-school coaching junkie.

• The Kamanetzki brothers (who do great work) have a fantastic interview with Royce White.

• How one Cavs fan has come to accept the coming Kyrie Irving rumor frenzy. (He will sign his rookie extension and stay, the question is always the contract after that.)

• The Bobcats have reportedly offered Anthony Tolliver a one-year contract, likely at the league minimum. He’s waiting to see what other offers may come in.

• A former male dancer at Dallas Mavericks has been arrested in conjunction with a series of murders.

• Bulls assistant coach Adrian Griffin is out of the running for the 76ers head coaching job.

• Alexis Ajinca will return next season to French team SIG Strasbourg.

• Luke Harangody will play next season in Russia with UNICS Kazan.

Khris Middleton dunks, Jimmy Butler can’t stop him (VIDEO)

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Khris Middleton has more expectations and more pressure on him after a breakout season in Milwaukee, followed by him getting him PAID this summer.

Well, he looked pretty good on this play against the Bulls, making the steal then throwing down despite Jimmy Butler‘s efforts to stop him.

Middleton finished with 10 points on 5-of-7 shooting for the Bucks. However, Butler had the last laugh as he went off for 23 points on 12 shots and led the Bulls to the (meaningless) preseason win.

Somebody looks comfortable: Paul George drops 20 in first quarter

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Paul George‘s first experience starting as a power forward was going up against Anthony Davis — not just one of the best power forwards in the game, one of the handful of best players in the game period. That didn’t go well for George, and he wasn’t happy about it.

His second experience was in another preseason game Tuesday, going up against the Pistons and their four, Ersan İlyasova. He’s not quite as intimidating.

George scored 20 points on 7-of-8 shooting, 4-of-5 on threes — and that was just the first quarter (you can see it all in the video above).

As we have said before, George at the four is not a bad call by the Pacers, but some of that depends on the matchup. On the nights the Pacers face Davis or Blake Griffin or LaMarcus Aldridge or Zach Randolph (or a handful of others) the Pacers’ coaching staff is going to have to adjust. But there are a lot of nights where George at the four is going to force the other team to adjust, and that will play into the Pacers’ hands.