The Mavericks met with Carmelo Anthony. They met with LeBron James’ agent.
Mark Cuban – relying on the pull of Dirk Nowitzki – has done an excellent job positioning Dallas as potential destination for premier free agents. From Deron Williams to Dwight Howard, the Mavericks have struck out lately, but at least they’re drawing looks.
Unfortunately, this year will likely bring more letdown for Dallas. Melo’s top two options appear to be the Knicks and Lakers, and the Heat and Cavaliers seem to lead the LeBron race.
So, what’s next for the Mavericks?
Chris Broussard of ESPN:
Dallas, believing it will likely lose out on both LeBron James and Carmelo Anthony, will attempt to sign Chandler Parsons away from the Houston Rockets. The Mavericks also have Luol Deng and Trevor Ariza in their sights, sources said.
Parsons is a restricted free agent, meaning the Rockets can match any offer he receives. If LeBron and Melo have already signed, Houston would very likely match any offer for Parsons. But if those two stars are still in play, the Rockets would have to think long and hard about matching a big offer.
I’m not convinced Parsons would put Houston in that position. He was slated to earn less than $1 million this season. The Rocket did him a favor by declining his team option and letting him become a free agent, one can draw around $10 million per year. In exchange, maybe he agreed to wait to sign an offer sheet.
But if Parsons gets impatient and wants a guaranteed high salary, the Mavericks sure could make things interesting if they’re out of the Melo/LeBron sweepstakes before Houston.
The Los Angeles Clippers dropped Game 5 to the Utah Jazz on Tuesday night, and find themselves down 3-2 as they head back to Salt Lake City for Game 6. The Clippers have had to deal with Utah’s formidable defense, so much so that they’ve built in counters to Jazz defenders overplaying shooters like JJ Redick.
One example of this countering method could be found in Game 3, when the Clippers ran a split cut for Redick. Instead of fighting endlessly around screens for a 3-point shot as you might expect, LA took the easy route and simply cut Redick to the basket for an easy layup as a means to take advantage of an overeager defender.
We’ve talked about the Split Cut here on NBA Playbook before. The Los Angeles Lakers used it earlier in the season to beat the Golden State Warriors, the team that uses the split cut perhaps the most out of any team in the NBA.
Other teams, including the Portland Trail Blazers, have adapted the Warriors’ use of the split cut as a counter for their own offense this season, which is a testament to just how useful it is.
If you need a reminder, a split cut all about a screener coming up to screen, then cutting toward the basket before his screen action fully takes place. It’s about timing, and catching defenders off guard when they go to set up their recover positions for screens.
For a full breakdown on the split cut and how the Clippers used it, watch the video above.
John Wall has been super, averaging 27 points and 11 assists while leading the Wizards to a 3-2 lead over the Hawks in the first-round.
Fred Hoiberg opened himself to clowning by complaining about Isaiah Thomas carrying.
So, the Bulls coach got clowned after the Celtics’ Game 5 win.
Late in the Celtics’ Game 5 win over the Bulls last night, Jae Crowder leg-locked Robin Lopez – the same dirty play that caused rancor for Matthew Dellavedova in the 2015 playoffs.
Lopez blocked Crowder’s shot, but the ball went to Al Horford, who attacked the basket. As Lopez tried to rotate to contest another shot, he couldn’t move. Crowder, who’d fallen to the floor, had him in a leg-lock. Lopez freed himself just in time to foul Horford.
Adding insult to avoided injury, Lopez got hit with a technical foul for complaining about the no-call.
I bet the league issues a technical foul on Crowder, too.