Michael Jordan

Michael Jordan hopes Hornets can land a superstar

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Elementary-school students love Michael Jordan, but how do NBA superstars feel about him?

That might determine whether the Charlotte Hornets, the team Jordan owns, take the next step.

Charlotte made a surprising run to the playoffs this season, and the Hornets have a deep and relative young supporting cast around their All-NBA third-team center, Al Jefferson. But Jordan is aiming higher.

Jordan, via Rick Bonnell of The Charlotte Observer:

“I always thought it was a great destination. I think Big Al (Jefferson) proved you can come here and make a big difference,” Jordan said Monday. “Hopefully we can look at that and attract some other superstar.”

Other superstar? Hopefully, Jordan was referring to himself and not Jefferson. I’m a big fan of Jefferson and his mid-career development, but even the most liberal uses of the term wouldn’t include him.

Anyway, the Hornets will have a hard time luring a superstar for no other reason than than they haven’t shown they can support one. Since Charlotte re-entered the NBA as the Bobcats in 2004-05, only the Kings (edit: and Bucks) have had fewer All-Stars:

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Gerald Wallace made the All-Star Game in 2010, but he’s not really a perception changer. I doubt some like, say, Carmelo Anthony would say, “Gerald Wallace really put Charlotte on the map. Now, that’s a destination.”

Jefferson might ultimately help the Hornets land a true star. He made the team better, and Charlotte has no chance of luring a superstar without already winning on the court.

But that still might not be enough.

Jordan is the ultimate draw. As the greatest player in NBA history, he immediately commands respect, even among this generation of players. His ties with Nike could also help make the necessary connections.

The Hornets face an uphill battle to land a superstar, and talking about getting one is easy – every team wants one – but if it’s a challenge Jordan is serious about pursuing, the mission starts with him.

Report: Nets progressing in GM search, should have one by trade deadline

NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 23:  Center court sports a projected Brooklyn Nets logo prior to the game against the Los Angeles Clippers at the Barclays Center on November 23, 2012 in the Brooklyn borough of New York City. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
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The Nets have been without a general manager since January 10, when Billy King stepped down coinciding with the firing of head coach Lionel Hollins. Since then, a few names have come up in rumors about their search, including Danny Ferry, who appears to be out of the running. But there may be a new GM in place soon.

Via Tim Bontemps of the Washington Post:

Not that the Nets will be able to do much at the deadline, since they don’t really have a lot to trade that will be of interest to other teams, and at 13-38 they’re already essentially out of playoff contention. But having a GM in place will allow them to get a head start on planning for the offseason, which will include free agency, hiring a new coach, scouting for the draft … actually, forget that last part.

Mavs rookie Salah Mejri tries to talk trash, Gregg Popovich and Tim Duncan laugh at him (VIDEO)

DALLAS, TX - OCTOBER 21:  Eric Bledsoe #2 of the Phoenix Suns is fouled by Salah Mejri #50 of the Dallas Mavericks during a preseason game at American Airlines Center on October 21, 2015 in Dallas, Texas.   NOTE TO USER:  User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
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The Spurs beat the Mavericks by 26 points on Friday night, a game all of the Dallas players would love to forget. But there was a funny moment for rookie big man Salah Mejri: after a dunk, he appeared to yell something at the San Antonio bench. Gregg Popovich and Tim Duncan were completely nonplussed.

For what it’s worth, Mejri later tweeted that he wasn’t intending to be disrespectful.

Hassan Whiteside with one-handed catch block (VIDEO)

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Hassan Whiteside recorded a triple-double last night against the Hornets, and his tenth block was particularly impressive. He didn’t so much block Marvin Williams‘ layup attempt as pluck it out of the air with one hand. It almost looks like it should count as a block, rebound and steal at the same time.

Rasheed Wallace delivers truck full of water to residents of Flint, Michigan

MILWAUKEE - FEBRUARY 07: Rasheed Wallace #30 of the Detroit Pistons reacts after being called for a technical foul against the Milwaukee Bucks on February 7, 2009 at the Bradley Center in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. The Pistons defeated the Bucks 126-121 in overtime. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agreees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
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The NBA world has taken notice of the water crisis in Flint, Michigan. In Thursday night’s home game against the Knicks on TNT, Pistons players wore warmup shirts that read “FLINT NOW,” and the organization announced a $500,000 donation towards providing clean water for residents of the town.

Former Pistons great and general basketball legend Rasheed Wallace went even further, according to a tweet from his alma mater, the University of North Carolina:

Sheed obviously has a connection to Michigan, having played in Detroit for six years (including on the 2004 title team) and serving as an assistant coach for the Pistons during the 2013-14 season. This was an incredible gesture by him for the residents of a town that has been without drinkable water for a long time.