Report: Chris Paul cried in locker room after Game 5 playoff loss to OKC

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Chris Paul is one of the game’s most fiery competitors, a player who wants to win much more badly than the rabid fans who cheer for him on a nightly basis.

It’s not surprising, then, that he would be moved to tears following a crucial postseason loss where his play down the stretch was a contributing factor to such a critical defeat.

The Clippers were tied with the Thunder 2-2 in the best of seven series, and L.A. held a seven-point lead on the road in Oklahoma City with just 49.2 seconds left in the pivotal Game 5.

Normally, that margin with that amount of time remaining is enough to seal the deal, but the Thunder stormed back to get the victory, before eliminating the Clippers in the very next game. And Paul, given both his competitive spirit as well as his late-game mistakes, took the loss especially hard.

From Ben Bolch of the Los Angeles Times:

It was all part of the Clippers’ blowing a seven-point lead in the final 49.2 seconds of Game 5 that sent the Clippers back to Staples Center facing an elimination game that they lost to end their season. Paul was so devastated he cried in the locker room afterward.

Four months later, the emotional fallout lingers.

“It would be lying to you to say I’d forgotten about it,” Paul said during a break on set. “It’s one of those things that I don’t want to forget, to tell you the truth. I think for me, I feel like you have to remember things like that and therefore you don’t want that feeling again. I know I don’t.”

This isn’t something to make fun of, and in fact, it’s quite the opposite.

Real fans are emotionally invested in the outcome of their team’s favorite games, and I hate to break it to them, but the vast majority of players don’t care about these contests nearly as much. It’s a job for the most part, and once one game is finished, it’s onto the next one, often times in another city the very next night.

Players like Paul are rare in today’s NBA. Kobe Bryant and Steve Nash have the same level of competitiveness, but they’re the only ones who immediately come to mind that share Paul’s passion.

There may be others, certainly, but the list is shorter than most fans would like to acknowledge. A report of a genuine show of emotion should only gain Paul more respect from those following the league, and anyone who would try to use this as a reason to mock the game’s best point guard should ask themselves what they truly want to see out of the players they idolize.

Paul George disputes the idea that he’s already moved out of his house in Indiana

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Rumors spread on social media this week as moving trucks were found outside of Indiana Pacers star forward Paul George‘s house. But were they really his?

The user posted photos of giant moving trucks outside of a house in George’s neighborhood to Snapchat. People began speculating wildly that George, the subject of trade rumors for the last few weeks, could be on the move.

Now, the Pacers start has taken to Twitter to dispute the moving trucks as his. So whose were they?

According to George, they were there to move his neighbors.

Via Twitter:

Well I guess that settles that.

The other obvious answer is that they were George’s and NBA players simply move to new locations during the summer. Half of the NBA it seems lives in the Los Angeles area come the off-season, or at least train there, so seeing moving trucks outside of his house would not have been an anomaly if you ask me.

We are past the 2017 NBA Draft and still we have no deal for George. But the NBA off-season is long, and free agency is just around the corner. I am sure that we will see a new landing spot for George in the coming months.

Then we can send somebody on over to see if there are moving trucks at his house.

Hornets’ GM slips up, introduces Dwayne Bacon as Dwyane Wade

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It’s a slip that would have made Freud proud.

Charlotte had a good draft night. In the first round, Kentucky shooter Malik Monk fell to them at 11 and they grabbed him. In the second round, they took a smart risk with Florida State wing Dwayne Bacon.

Friday came the usual team press conference with the GM introducing his players and Charlotte GM Rich Cho made a mistake, introducing Bacon as “Dwyane Wade.”

I love Bacon’s reaction.

Cho instantly realized his mistake and laughed it off, then later said: “Actually, I think they have some similarities.” Hornets fans can only hope.

Kevin Durant trolls Westbrook, haters with cupcake hat — now topped with a ring

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Back when Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook were breaking into the NBA together and learning how to win together, one of their veteran mentors was tough guy Kendrick Perkins. When Perkins thought someone was acting soft, he called that player a “cupcake.”

When news broke on the Fourth of July last summer that Durant was leaving OKC for Golden State, the NBA world freaked out. Except for Westbrook. He just posted one Instagram photo that day — a tiered tray of red, white, and blue cupcakes. It was meant as a subtle jab at Durant, but when word got out (via Lee Jenkins of Sports Illustrated) what it meant, Thunder fans embraced it and had cupcake signs and clothing made for Durant’s return to Oklahoma City.

Durant had the last laugh — he’s got a new hat with a cupcake on it, topped by a ring.

Well played Durant. Well played.

Another report Rockets “aggressively” trying to clear cap space to chase Chris Paul

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Daryl Morey is big game hunting. Again.

The Rockets, with James Harden running Mike D’Antoni’s offense, made a leap up to the NBA’s second tier last season — then landed with a playoff thud. The team should be better the second season in the same system, but to get past the Warriors, the Rockets need more talent.

Hence the Rockets are going to chase Chris Paul. That’s not new news to anyone paying attention, but Chris Haynes laid it out in more detail in on SportsCenter.

The Rockets need talent and Chris Paul is unquestionably that. He and James Harden could figure out how to play together.

The problem is money. Chris Paul is going to demand max or near-max money, so close to $30 million. The Rockets enter the summer with about $10 million. The Rockets need to clear cap space and are ready to deal so long as they don’t take contracts back. Lou Williams will make $7 million next season, so even moving him and Patrick Beverley is not enough to land a Chris Paul or Paul Millsap. Moving Ryan Anderson ($19.6 million) or Eric Gordon ($12.9 million) helps much more.

That Morey is being aggressive isn’t the news, the question is can he find a willing partner to lower some money off his cap and give him a sense of what is to come. CP3 is going to meet with a lot of teams, but the Clippers do have advantages and are the favorites to retain him.