LeBron James on Carmelo Anthony-Kevin Love trade report: ‘It’s trash, and the guy who wrote it is trash’

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Frank Isola of the New York Daily reported LeBron James is pushing the Cavaliers to trade for Carmelo Anthony, even if it means sending Kevin Love to the Knicks.

LeBron shot back — harshly.

LeBron:

It’s trash, and the guy who wrote it is trash too for writing that, especially during the game like that. It’s always about outside noise, and that’s just outside noise for us. We’ve got to focus on what needs to be done in order for us to continue to compete for a championship. We’ve got who we’ve got. Our GM will do a great job of figuring out if we need something else, but right now, we’re in a good place.

I don’t what what LeBron is pushing behind the scenes. He has expressed a desire to play with his friend Anthony.

But LeBron wants us to forget he just said, “We need a f—ing playmaker” and “We gotta get a point guard. It’s my last time saying it”?

It’s hard to take him seriously when he essentially says the roster is fine as is. We know he’s pushing for change, because he has done so publicly on the record. That doesn’t mean he’s pushing for a Love-Anthony trade, and I’m inclined to believe LeBron is smart enough not to.* But this retort goes too far to be completely credible.

*I believe a Love-Anthony trade might help the Cavs against the Warriors this year, would hurt them against every other team this year and would hurt them against every team — including the Warriors — in future years. That’s not good justification to make the deal, though Golden State is so clearly the main threat this season.

In Isola’s defense, if he had this story pegged during the Cavaliers’ game tonight, there’s no harm in publishing as soon as he’s certain. Delaying only gives a competitor an opportunity to steal the scoop.

However, Love played great (39 points, 12 rebounds, three assists and three steals) in Cleveland’s wild win over the Wizards. Nobody wants to talk at this moment about trading Love.

 

 

No matter what LeBron suggested before tonight, it’s hard to see that changing between now and the deadline. If LeBron were open to trading Love for Anthony, let alone pushing it, I can’t see him firing back so strongly at Isola.

This was the response of someone who knows Love is staying put and wants to stick up for a teammate he’ll ride with through the playoffs.

 

 

Jazz boost international bona fides with new minor-league coach

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SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Martin Schiller has been named coach of the Salt Lake City Stars, the Utah Jazz’s NBA G League affiliate.

Schiller previously served as an assistant coach of MHP Riesen Ludwigsburg in Germany and replaces Dean Cooper. He was an assistant coach for the Artland Dragons from 2010-15.

Schiller has also been an assistant coach on the German National Team since 2015, where he worked with Jazz assistant coach Alex Jensen.

Schiller hails from Vienna, Austria, and Stars vice president of basketball operations Bart Taylor lauded him for his international experience and player development background.

The Jazz organization is known to have close relationships with the international basketball community. The Jazz currently have eight international players.

Kyrie Irving will wear No. 11 with Celtics

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BOSTON (AP) — Newly acquired guard Kyrie Irving will wear No. 11 in Boston because the Celtics already have retired the numbers he wore in college and with the Cleveland Cavaliers.

Irving wore No. 11 at two New Jersey high schools before switching to No. 1 at Duke. He wore No. 2 with the Cavaliers for the first six years of his NBA career.

The Celtics retired No. 1 for founder and original owner Walter Brown. They retired No. 2 for former coach and general manager Red Auerbach.

In all, the Celtics have retired 21 numbers, with Paul Pierce’s No. 34 next in line for the TD Garden rafters.

 

PBT Extra: Cavaliers’ new GM aces first big test with Kyrie Irving trade

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Everyone in the NBA — heck, nearly everyone living in the Western hemisphere — knew Kyrie Irving wanted out of Cleveland. That should kill the Cavaliers’ leverage and make it hard to get enough quality back.

New GM Koby Altman — the guy thrust into the job when David Griffin was shown the door — pulled it off brilliantly.

That’s what I talk about in this new PBT Extra. With Isaiah Thomas and Jae Crowder, the Cavaliers remain the team to beat in the East this season. The Brooklyn Nets pick gives them flexibility going forward, whatever LeBron James decides to do next season.

First time at the plate in the big leagues and Altman crushed it to straight away center field.

Cavaliers-Celtics deal first offseason trade involving players who just met in NBA Finals or conference finals

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The Cavaliers and Celtics played in last year’s Eastern Conference finals. The teams were widely expected to meet there again.

Yet, Cleveland and Boston just completed a blockbuster trade – Kyrie Irving for Isaiah Thomas, Jae Crowder, Ante Zizic and the Nets’ 2018 first-round pick.

That seemed odd.

In fact, it’s unprecedented.

That is an incredible fact, one which speaks to LeBron Jamescachet. The Cavs are emphasizing this season, LeBron’s last before a player option, by loading up with veterans Thomas and Crowder. With LeBron still reigning in Cleveland, the Celtics are delaying their peak by acquiring the younger Irving.

Adding to the intrigue: the Cavs and Celtics are still favored to meet in this year’s conference finals. At minimum, they’ll face off in a(n even more) highly anticipated opening-night matchup.