Gregg Popovich says he’d like to continue to coach Spurs beyond this season

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SAN ANTONIO — Gregg Popovich was anticipating certain types of questions to be lobbed his way during Saturday’s media availability in advance of Sunday’s Game 5, where his Spurs will have a chance to finish off the Heat and win a fifth NBA title under his reign as the team’s head coach.

But he wasn’t necessarily expecting to be probed about his future.

It’s been speculated that Popovich may choose to end his coaching tenure at the same time as Tim Duncan, who has only a player option for next season remaining on his deal. If indeed that was the plan, it would make sense for Popovich to groom a successor to continue his winning tradition. But it hasn’t exactly been a priority for someone so focused on the task at hand.

“I don’t think about legacy very often or at all, I guess,” Popovich said. “But if something like that happened or was available, we’d do it, but we haven’t really discussed it.”

Duncan wanted no part of retirement talk when he faced a similar line of of questioning.

“I don’t have any plans on doing anything,” Duncan said. “I’m going to figure it out when it comes. I’m not saying I’m retiring, I’m not saying I’m not retiring. I’m not saying anything. I’m going to figure it out as it goes.”

“I  don’t have a timeframe,” he continued. “I don’t think about it. Whatever people are saying or who has insight on whatever, they’re getting it from somewhere else because I haven’t told anybody anything nor have I thought about it in any respect.”

While Duncan made it clear he’s truly undecided, Popovich was a bit more willing to commit to continuing his brilliant career.

“I don’t feel tired,” Popovich said. “I mean, I’m tired today, but I mean in general. I’d like to continue to coach.”

Beyond this season?

“Sure,” he said. “I didn’t think I was going to have to answer those kind of questions today.”

The reason that those were the questions that came, of course, was due to the fact that the Spurs — a team that’s won at least 50 games for 15 straight seasons — have a commanding 3-1 lead over the Heat in these Finals. And based on how San Antonio has performed offensively in this series, most observers expect that its result is now a foregone conclusion.

All of which forces us to look forward to what might be next for one of the league’s all-time great franchises.

U.S. soldier shares pen pal letters from 2003 with Larry Nance Jr.

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Larry Nance Jr. is now a professional athlete for the Los Angeles Lakers, but back in 2003 Nance was just a 10-year-old kid with a dream of playing in the NBA.

During that time, Nance was apparently a pen pal with a U.S. soldier named Bianca Snow. Snow recently posted old letters from Nance to social media that shows the interaction between the two.

It’s pretty cool to see a moment in time like this.

Via Twitter:

The letters read as follows (transcription via SB Nation):

March 19, 2003

Dear U.S. Soldier,

My name is Larry Nance. I have 1 sister, 1 brother that annoy me all the time. My dad played in the NBA.

Thank you for fighting for us in the war. You must be brave and miss your family.

I hope you get home soon and see your family soon. Good luck.

Sincerely,

Larry Nance

Dear U.S. Soldier is the war almost over? Where is Saddam? How are you? I’m fine. Thank you for writing back. Where are you?

Are you good at basketball? I like the Lakers too they are wining there series with the Timberwolves. Who is your favorite player? Mine is Shaq. Who do you want to get LeBron James? I want the Cavs to get LeBron, that is because my dad played for the Cavs. His number is retired in the Gund Arena.

And again Thank you!!

from,

Larry Nance

Nance saw the post on social media and responded to Snow, inviting her to a future game.

Pretty neat stuff.

Check out the 100 best crossovers of last season (VIDEO)

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Do you have 22 minutes to watch the 100 best crossovers of last season? It’s Monday, of course you do. It’s either that or work.

Here they are, as compiled by the fine folks at NBA.com. Enjoy. And don’t be shocked that Damian Lillard, Stephen Curry, and Russell Westbrook have the top spots.

And if you must go into the comments and complain that technically not all of these are crossovers, go ahead, but it doesn’t change anything. It’s like saying there is only one way to make a proper matzo ball soup — there are a lot of variations (I like it with dill in the broth), and they all can be delicious. Just enjoy it.

Cavaliers name Koby Altman full-time general manager

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CLEVELAND (AP) The Cavaliers have named Koby Altman their full-time general manager.

Altman’s promotion had been expected for days and was made official on Monday. The 34-year-old has been serving as Cleveland’s interim GM this summer after David Griffin parted ways with the club following the NBA Finals.

Altman has been with the club since 2012. He will be the fifth GM for owner Dan Gilbert since 2005.

Gilbert said he’s been impressed with the job Altman has done over the past five weeks and said he “has the credentials, knowledge, experience and instincts to be an outstanding general manager. … I am confident that Koby is equipped and prepared to lead and succeed in this dynamic environment.”

Altman is taking charge during an interesting juncture for the Cavs. All-Star point guard Kyrie Irving recently asked to be traded and LeBron James is heading into his final season under contract.

More AP basketball: https://apnews.com/tag/NBAbasketball

Report: Derrick Rose commits to sign with Cleveland Cavaliers

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It looks like former NBA MVP Derrick Rose is heading to the Cleveland Cavaliers.

Rumors have been swirling all week about Rose, who could be a backup or big-minute replacement for Kyrie Irving, who reportedly wants to be traded away from LeBron James and the Cavaliers.

According to reports released on Monday from Yahoo! Sports and ESPN, Rose has committed to sign with the Cavaliers after completing a physical. Rose will be paid $2.1 million on a one-year contract.

Via Twitter:

The Cavaliers have had one of the weirder offseasons, and while adding Rose isn’t necessarily the strangest thing they have done, it could be a larger signal for the rest of the league with regard to what direction the team is going to go.

Rose played OK in New York last season, and would be well suited as a backup bench spark for a contending team if he found the right fit. The Cavaliers will likely try him out in lineups with Lebron, but how he fits in as of the end of July isn’t quite clear. Will he be a backup? Will he be the de facto starter if Irving is no longer on the team come opening night?

The 2017 NBA offseason has been endlessly interesting, and this move is another in a long series of twists and turns.