Michael Carter-Williams confident 76ers won’t trade him

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Not many teams would even consider trading the reigning Rookie of the Year. Would the 76ers actually do it?

From the jump, that rumor was unlikely to come to fruition. But I thought, if there were one team crazy enough to do it, it’d be Philadelphia.

The 76ers have been historically aggressive in rebuilding/tanking. They’re attempting to assemble a roster full of good players by drafting them while the players they’ve already acquired are still bad enough to land a spot high in the lottery. Soon, Carter-Williams will be good enough to lift them higher in the standings and that window for drafting elite talent will start to close. Maybe the 76ers want to keep it open a little longer – and trading Carter-Williams for a future draft pick would accomplish that.

Plus, it’s possible Carter-Williams’ stock never gets higher. He completely exceed expectations this season, and although some of that is due to Carter-Williams being better than expected, he might be due for a regression to the mean. With three seasons left on his rookie contract, potential trade partners would also covet his low salary.

Long story short, I saw the logic for – and consequently, the possibility of – the 76ers trading him.

Carter-Williams did not.

As transcribed by CSN Philly:

“I didn’t even pay any attention to it,” Carter-Williams told the WIP morning show on Wednesday. “I have a great relationship with the coaches and the GM here, you know, I’m pretty confident that I’m not going anywhere for a little while. So, yeah, I heard it and I didn’t really pay any attention to it.”

At face value, Carter-Williams’ words don’t mean much. Plenty of players possessing great relationships with their coaches and general manager get traded. The NBA is too cutthroat for those relationships to completely prevent trades.

But there might be an implied extra layer to Carter-Williams’ statement. If his great relationship with Brett Brown and Sam Hinkie meant one of them told him he wouldn’t be traded, Carter-Williams can feel relatively safe. I doubt they’d outright lie to him, though a misinterpretation is possible.

If Carter-Williams is remaining with the 76ers, that means preparing for next season with them. Unfortunately, his shoulder surgery might slow him into July.

Tom Moore of Calkins Media:

https://twitter.com/tmoore76ers/status/474321694866173952

Carter-Williams has plenty of time to catch up during training camp, the preseason and even the regular season. It’s doubtful the 76ers are ready to leave the lottery next year – even if they keep Carter-Williams.

Clippers blow 18-point lead, lose in final 2 seconds on putback to Kings (VIDEO)

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The Los Angeles Clippers had a rough go of things against the Sacramento Kings on Sunday. Up by 18 with more than five minutes to go, LA blew their lead and were left to watch as the Kings sealed the game late.

The final possession for Sacramento came on a missed corner 3-pointer by Clippers guard Jamal Crawford. The Kings got the outlet pass out on the rebound, but Ben McLemore took it to the rack and missed. That’s when Willie Cauley-Stein stepped in, cleaned up the board, and put the game-winning shot home with less than two seconds left.

Los Angeles lost in spectacular fashion, and became the only team this season to lose given their game situation.

Here’s a compilation the NBA put together of Sacramento’s epic comeback:

Meanwhile, Chris Paul called it the worst regular season loss of his career.

The Clippers peaked too soon. Like, the first 20 games of the season too soon.

Russell Westbrook throws incredible halfcourt bounce pass vs. Rockets (VIDEO)

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Russell Westbrook had yet another triple-double on Sunday. The Oklahoma City Thunder star notched 13 assists in the loss to the Houston Rockets, 137-125, and one of them came on a nifty pass to teammate Victor Oladipo.

The play happened with the Thunder on the fastbreak early in the third quarter. Westbrook was moving from left-to-right across the middle of the floor with the ball while Oladipo streaked down the right wing.

With the Rockets defense collapsing, Westbrook reached halfcourt and fired a bounce pass that sliced through the opposition.

Oladipo finished with the clean dunk.

Still not sure it beats this one, but I think we’ll have to compare once the season comes to a close.

Kobe Bryant on race for Podoloff Trophy: “We might see our first co-MVPs this year”

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The race between James Harden and Russell Westbrook for the 2017 NBA MVP has narrowed to a two-man race toward the end of the season. The Oklahoma City Thunder star is averaging at triple-double this year, and the Houston Rockets guard is doing things nobody has ever done on a basketball court before.

It’s a tough decision to decide between them, so much so that even former Los Angeles Lakers great and 2008 NBA MVP Kobe Bryant can’t do it.

Speaking on ESPN on Sunday, Bryant said he thought the league might have to just bite the bullet on Westbrook vs. Harden.

“We might see our first co-MVPs this year,” said Bryant.

That would be a huge step for the league, but I’m not entirely sure they would do it. There have been co-NBA All-Star Game MVPs in years past, but never league MVP.

Still, can you decide between Russ and Harden? The Mamba can’t.

Watch Rockets C Nene lead the break, eurostep past Enes Kanter (VIDEO)

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Houston Rockets center Nene is from Brazil, but on Sunday against the Oklahoma City Thunder the South American native went full euro.

On a fastbreak possession, Nene took on Thunder big man Enes Kanter near the rim and absolutely shook him with a nasty eurostep.

The play was so good that it forced Oklahoma City to call a timeout as James Harden and the rest of the Rockets bench met Nene on the court to celebrate.