Carrick Felix

Cavaliers’ rookie Carrick Felix really wanted to be Tony Hawk


Ask young players coming into the league who they wanted to be growing up and you get a lot of Kobe Bryant, Kevin Garnett, Michael Jordan, some Allen Iverson, some young ones say LeBron James, a few other players are mixed in there.

Cleveland Cavaliers rookie Carrick Felix went another direction: Tony Hawk.

He said as much speaking with the Plain Dealer about the upcoming season (hat to to Ball Don’t Lie).

“I wanted to be the next Tony Hawk,” he said, referring to the most famous skateboarder in the world.

From the age of 7, when a neighbor kid on a skateboard landed in Felix’s front yard outside Phoenix, until his junior year in high school, Felix was on his board all day every day. “I was always outside practicing from 7 o’clock in the morning to 12 o’clock at night,” he admitted.

He eventually had to give it up because his college coaches (and now his NBA contract) feel the same way about it that they do about base jumping — it’s too big an injury risk.

However Felix talks about skateboarding the way Steve Nash talks about soccer — it helped his footwork, his balance and there were other things that translated to the basketball court.

For now, his skateboarding days are done.

“The skateboard is off limits,” Felix said, laughing. “I still have it in my room. I never get on it [but] it’s always fun to look at.”

Felix looked a little overwhelmed at points in Summer League, he shot 40 percent on his way to 7.2 points a game. But it’s a learning process adapting to the NBA.

Just like learning to skateboard.

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.