Report: Knicks gauged John Calipari’s interest in becoming their coach

5 Comments

As Knicks president, Phil Jackson will probably want to hire his own coach , but Mike Woodson – overseeing a disappointing season that rarely included signs of a playoff berth – was always on the hot seat.

Want proof (beyond common sense)?

Ian Begley of ESPNNewYork.com:

In January, the Knicks, via a third party, reached out to Calipari to gauge his interest in coaching the Knicks next season, a league source familiar with the scenario told ESPN New York.

The league source says Calipari was intrigued by the possibility of coaching Carmelo Anthony. Both Anthony and Calipari, it should be noted, are represented by Creative Artists Agency.

Hiring Calipari would have been a huge splash for splash-minded Knicks owner James Dolan. The Kentucky coach is a huge name in the sport, even he holds just a 72-112 NBA record from his time with the New Jersey Nets.

Instead, Dolan made his splash with Phil Jackson. And even if that doesn’t fill Dolan’s quota for big-name hirings, I doubt Calipari becomes New York’s next coach.

Jackson has pledged to check CAA’s influence with the Knicks. Beyond sharing that agency with Carmelo Anthony, what’s the major appeal of Calipari?

This sounds like an idea – it never even approached “plan” level – that has come and gone.

Nets’ national anthem singer kneels to finish performance

Getty Images
5 Comments

NEW YORK (AP)—  The national anthem singer at the Brooklyn Nets’ home opener took a knee at the end of her performance.

Justine Skye was nearing the completion of the song Friday night when she went to one knee for the finish. There were some cheers, but appeared to be more boos from the crowd at Barclays Center to see the Nets play the Orlando Magic.

NBA players have continued to stand during the playing of the anthems, as required by league rule.

Mavericks’ rookie guard Dennis Smith Jr. misses game with knee swelling

Getty Images
Leave a comment

DALLAS (AP) — Dallas Mavericks rookie point guard Dennis Smith Jr. missed Friday’s game against the Sacramento Kings with swelling in his left knee.

Smith, the ninth pick in the NBA draft out of North Carolina State, had 16 points and 10 assists in the Mavericks’ season-opening loss to the Atlanta Hawks.

Smith participated in the Mavericks’ shootaround on Friday morning and was a late scratch. It is not known if Smith will play Saturday for Dallas.

The Mavericks were also missing guard Devin Harris, who was granted leave of absence after his brother died on Thursday.

Watch Lonzo Ball’s 29 point, 11 rebound, 9 assist game Friday night

3 Comments

This was more of what fans expected from Lonzo Ball.

After a rough first game against the Clippers — with Patrick Beverley in his face all night — Ball found plenty of room to operate against the soft defense of the Phoenix Suns. With room to operate Ball had 29 points, 11 rebounds, and nine assists — just one assist short of a triple-double. He helped the Lakers pull away to a lead in the third then hold on for a 132-130 win over the Suns.

Ball wasn’t terribly efficient, 12-of-27 shooting, but he was 4-of-9 from three, he played with great pace, he was decisive, and was finding guys with his passes. It was a step forward, even if it was against a sad defense (Eric Bledsoe can be a good defender, but he has seemed disinterested in recent years).

Ball and the Lakers are going to be up and down this season, the goal is for there to be more ups near the end of the season.

LeBron James rejects Giannis Antetokounmpo at the rim

1 Comment

Through the first couple games of the season, Giannis Antetokounmpo has put up impressive numbers — he dropped 34 points, 8 rebounds, and 8 assists on the Cavaliers Friday night.

But the Cavaliers still have LeBron James.

He had 24 points and 8 assists, leading Cleveland to the win.

LeBron also reminded the Greek Freak just how good a rim protector he is. Few people can slow Antetokounmpo on the drive, but LeBron is one of them.

Is it too early to root for a Cavs vs. Bucks playoff series?