Thaddeus Young

Thaddeus Young denies making trade request. Because that’s how the game is played.

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Yesterday we passed along the report that before Philadelphia had starting shopping Thaddeus Young around he had gone to the team and asked for a trade. He didn’t want to be part of a rebuilding process.

If you’ve watched how this game was played with others guys trying to get moved then you knew what was coming next — the denial that he asked to be traded.

Here it is for Young, via Dei Lynam of

“I just think it is funny that it is ‘sources’ that say I asked to be traded,” Young said. “I am here, ready to give 110 percent each and every game. I am ready to just play and try to win basketball games.”

There was no yes or no in his answer, so Young was asked point blank: Did he ask to be traded?

“No,” Young said. “My agent has talked to [general manager Sam Hinkie] about different situations and options. I know there have been talks about me being traded and me having a lot of frustrations, but that comes with losing basketball games. People have to realize that when you are in a losing situation like we are now, we are going to get frustrated and everyone is going to tense up a little bit. That is what has been happening.”

No doubt as long as he pulls on a Sixers uniform he will give it his all for them. That is different than wanting out, but there is a game to how that is done.

First off, a player can’t go public with a trade request lest they incur the wrath of David Stern — publicly ask for a trade and it will bring down a severe fine.

So players’ agents or others in their inner circle make the trade request known.

Look at what Young said: He rightfully can say he did not ask for a trade. Now, his agent has talked to the Sixers GM “about different situations and options” and you can bet a lot of those were trade discussions where the agent made sure what Young really wants is clearly communicated. However the player is given plausible deniability, just like a president.

I still expect you will see Young moved before the trade deadline Feb. 20. The semantics of the trade request does not matter.

Players’ union, NBA to set up cardiac screening for retired players

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First it was Darryl Dawkins. Then it was Moses Malone.

Two all-time great players who recently died — and at t0o young an age, 58 and 60 respectively — from undiagnosed heart conditions. Even before that, recognizing the issue the NBA players union and the league itself were setting up supplemental health coverage to provide cardiac screening for retired players, something ESPN’s Jackie MacMullan recently broke.

The joint effort between union executive director Michele Roberts and NBA commissioner Adam Silver — at a time when there still may be potentially acrimonious labor negotiations looming for their sides — is intended to ease the health concerns of its retired players.

Roberts said action from the players’ association on providing screening for its retired players is “imminent.”

“I wish I could give you an exact timetable, but we have to make sure all the components are in place,” Roberts told ESPN recently. “I will tell you we hope to have something sooner than later.”

The Cardiologists are affiliated with the NBA already, and some of the money will come from the league, while the union is both pitching in a chunk of cash and is the one organizing this, according to the report.

It’s good to Roberts and Silver working together on this. While you’d like to think this would be the kind of no-brainer move that the league and union would work together on, in the past the relationship didn’t always facilitate this sort of cooperation even on the obvious.

I’d like to think this bodes well for future labor talks, but I’m not willing to completely draw that parallel.


Stephen Curry drops 30 on Portland in preseason (VIDEO)

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Somebody is in midseason form.

Stephen Curry put up 30 on Portland in a preseason game Thursday night, hitting six threes and getting to the line 15 times over the course of his less than 26 minutes. It was quite a show.

Portland won the game 118-101 behind 25 points from Allen Crabbe and 22 from Damian Lillard. Not a lot of defense in this one but it was fun to watch.