Brandon Jennings starts Twitter beef with J.R. Smith

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Star players get special treatment in the NBA. Everyone just accepts that.

But when merely above-average players like J.R. Smith get significant special favors, the floodgates open.

The inclusion of Chris Smith, J.R. Smith’s brother, on the Knicks’ roster is a running joke around the league.

Unless you’re Brandon Jennings, whose stature is similar to Smith’s. Then you want to know why you can’t get your buddies into the NBA, too.

That tweet – referencing Pooh Jeter and Bobby Brown, who, like Jennings, are from Los Angeles, but are playing in China – was deleted. That’s why you’re seeing the message through a Holly MacKenzie retweet.

J.R. Smith didn’t respect any of this:

https://twitter.com/TheRealJRSmith/status/400846150502477824

Jennings tried to preach love:

It didn’t work:

https://twitter.com/TheRealJRSmith/status/400901800850915328

https://twitter.com/TheRealJRSmith/status/400901979318538240

Smith is likely referring to Selby dunking on Jennings in a 2011 Goodman League game:

The Pistons and Knicks play Tuesday, and that could be more interesting now. Though if Smith and Jennings hijack the game to out-shoot each other, a real possibility, that would probably destroy the quality of basketball. On the other hand, what would the quality be regardless?

Here’s the real lesson: In a Twitter beef between Jennings and J.R. Smith, the only real winner is Chris Smith, because he’s getting paid. I guess that makes J.R. Smith a winner, too.

Jennings? He’s just yapping and accomplishing nothing, though I enjoy when ever players speak truth regardless of whether it’s rational for them to do so. Jennings not wrong, but as The Dude says… (And I mean that as compliment. I love the jerks.)

Report: Austin Rivers returning for Clippers-Jazz Game 5

Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images
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There have been bigger injuries in the Clippers-Jazz first-round series: Blake Griffin‘s toe, Rudy Gobert‘s knee and Gordon Hayward‘s stomach.

But Clippers guard Austin Rivers has yet to play due to a strained hamstring.

It sounds as if that will change tomorrow.

Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports:

This is neither as big a deal as the Clippers will make it out to be nor as meaningless as Rivers’ many detractors will claim.

The 6-foot-4 Rivers will provide an important defensive upgrade on the perimeter. The Clippers haven’t successfully hidden Jamal Crawford and Raymond Felton, allowing Utah too many quality looks. Here how the Jazz have shot when defended by each, per NBA.com:

  • Crawford: 18-of-36 (50%), including 7-of-17 on 3-pointers (41%)
  • Felton: 13-of-24 (54%), including 5-of-8 on 3-pointers (63%)

Rivers needn’t be great to help behind Chris Paul and J.J. Redick.

Rockets bench hams it up over Andre Roberson missed free throw (video)

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Russell Westbrook might not want to talk about his supporting cast distinctively, but it’s a real issue for the Thunder, who trail the Rockets 3-1 in their first-round series.

Even Andre Roberson, who has impressively defended James Harden, brings a glaring weakness: free throws. Roberson is 2-for-17 from the line in the playoffs, including 2-for-12 in Game 4 yesterday. Houston even repeatedly intentionally fouled him late.

It was agonizing for all but the most partisan Rockets supporters – though even Houston’s bench, while at least implicitly mocking Roberson, appeared put off that he missed yet again.

Isaiah Thomas: ‘Mentally and emotionally, I’m not here’

AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast
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Isaiah Thomas previously explained his emotions in a statement, but the Celtics guard spoke publicly yesterday for the first time since the death of his sister in a car crash just before the playoffs.

Thomas, via A. Sherrod Blakely of CSN Northeast:

“Mentally and emotionally I’m not here,” Thomas said after Game 4, the first time he has spoken publicly since his sister’s death. “So I just feed off of what the guys give me. They give me a lot of confidence. I can’t do it without those guys. They believe in me. Being here is what makes me sane and makes me feel somewhat normal through these tough times.”

Thomas has played well for Boston, which won twice in Chicago to even its series with the Bulls, 2-2. It’s remarkable considering the heavy emotional burden and extra travel, going to Seattle for his sister’s funeral then joining the Celtics in Chicago.

His teammates have clearly rallied around him, and that surely helps. But I can’t even imagine how he’s simultaneously handling such a tragic family situation and the biggest games of his career.

Kyrie Irving knocks flamingo from Pacers fan’s hands (video)

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Pacers super fan Matt Asen brings his lucky flamingo to each game.

He also annoyed the heck out of Kyrie Irving by trying to hand it, rather than the ball, to the Cavaliers guard.