Indiana Pacers v Miami Heat - Game Five

Roy Hibbert trying to find a workaround to join USA Basketball

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Roy Hibbert was absent from this summer’s USA Basketball mini-camp in Las Vegas, but only because he isn’t eligible to play.

Hibbert has suited up for Jamaica in the past, making the mutual desire for him to be a part of team USA going forward difficult, at best.

But Hibbert seems intent on getting the situation figured out, and is in the process of doing everything he can to pave the way for him to be a part of USA Basketball in the future.

From Scott Agness of Pacers.com:

Pacers center Roy Hibbert wants to be part of the USA Basketball team and he said this week that international lawyers and his agent are in the process of trying to make that happen. Hibbert previously played a short stint with Team Jamaica after he was passed over and that has thus far made him ineligible.

“I wanted to play in the Olympics and then they invited some other guys from my draft class to be centers,” Hibbert explained. “I thought I could have been in that group. If I had gotten invited, I wouldn’t have played for Team Jamaica. You live and you learn. If I don’t play for Team USA ever again, I’ll enjoy my summers and bulk up like I did this summer.”

Hibbert is under the impression that Team USA has to make an inquiry to FIBA, the International Basketball Federation. He then has to be let go from Team Jamaica in order to join Team USA. Simply, it’s a lot of red tape, USA Basketball has to determine whether it’s worth the effort and Jamaica has to be understanding.

It’s complicated, but not impossible. Hibbert’s father is from Jamaica, but the Pacers’ big man is in fact an American with dual citizenship.

The international game seems to favor slashers and shooters over post players, but Team USA has plenty of those. Adding a player like Hibbert to the frontcourt rotation would address the only real weakness on the roster.

76ers increase Joel Embiid’s minute limit to 28

Philadelphia 76ers' Joel Embiid, left, tries to get around Cleveland Cavaliers' DeAndre Liggins, center, and Kevin Love during the first half of an NBA basketball game, Sunday, Nov. 27, 2016, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)
AP Photo/Matt Slocum
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Take comfort, chairs and staffers.

The 76ers have raised Joel Embiid‘s minute limit from 24 to 28.

Jessica Camerato of CSN Philly:

This was never a hard limit. Embiid played more than 24 minutes in five of his 12 games with a high of 27 in an overtime contest. Presumably, the new “limit” will also allow for Embiid to sometimes it.

Embiid’s numbers per 36 minutes are eye-popping: 28.6 points, 12.2 rebounds, 2.4 assists, 3.8 blocks and 6.4 turnovers. A small workload likely factors into his per-minute dominance, and he’s still a long way from typical starter minutes. But I’m interested to see how his production translates over a larger sample.

The 76ers, in their mission to be less bad this season, will also appreciate a few more minutes of Embiid. They defend like the NBA’s second-best defense with him on the floor and the league’s second-worst defense without him. They also score a little better with him. Overall, they get outscored by just 2.2 points per 100 possessions with him and a whopping 14.2 points per 100 possessions without him.

This could give Philadelphia a couple extra wins over the rest of the season. At minimum, it’ll make the 76ers more enjoyable to watch for a few more minutes each game.

James Johnson dunks on Rudy Gobert in crunch time (video)

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Opponents shoot just 41.8% at the rim with Rudy Gobert defending it – which is now second to Hassan Whiteside among the 50 players who defend the most shots at the rim per game.

But James Johnson went up with no fear, scoring two of his 24 points in the Heat’s 111-110 win over the Jazz last night.

Nicolas Batum bounces assist through Dwight Powell’s legs (video)

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The Hornets didn’t just beat the Mavericks, 97-87, last night.

Nicolas Batum got Charlotte style points with this pass through Dwight Powell‘s legs, assisting Cody Zeller.

Rondae Hollis-Jefferson floors Malcolm Brogdon with crossover (video)

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To be fair, Malcolm Brogdon was already off-balance before Rondae Hollis-Jefferson began his crossover.

To be real, DID YOU SEE BROGDON FALL OVER?