Author: Dan Feldman

Michel Martin, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar: Michael Jordan ‘took commerce over conscience’


Michael Jordan might have never said, “Republicans buy sneakers, too.”

But that quote carries on for a couple reasons.

1. It’s catchy.

2. It’s believable.

Jordan was apolitical and cared about making money.

NPR’s Michel Martin used that quote to ask Kareem Abdul-Jabbar about Jordan.


You can’t be afraid of losing shoe sales if you’re worried about your civil and human rights. You can’t be worried. It’s just the way it is. He took commerce over conscience. It’s unfortunate for him, but he’s got to live with it.

Abdul-Jabbar’s social conscience is admirable. I have a lot of respect for his willingness to take a public stand.

But this criticism of Jordan is unfair.

Beyond the fact he might have never said “Republicans buy sneakers, too,” Jordan shouldn’t be bashed for not sharing the same ideals as Abdul-Jabbar. Jordan is his own person. He’s entitle to use his platform in his own way, so long as he doesn’t cross ethical and moral lines. I don’t think political silence – a route taken by many – does that.

Abdul-Jabbar’s path is arguably more honorable, but that doesn’t mean he should denigrate Jordan by comparison.

DeMarcus Cousins reportedly out two more games

DeMarcus Cousins, Dwight Howard
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DeMarcus Cousins was going to miss at least two games with a strained Achilles.

Two games later, and that “at least” comes into play.

Sean Cunningham of ABC 10 Sacramento:

The Kings next two opponents: Rockets and Warriors. That’s a tough stretch.

At least Sacramento won’t have to face Houston’s starting center, Dwight Howard.

Jonathan Feigen of the Houston Chronicle:

Howard was ruled out for Friday’s game at the Sacramento Kings while the Rockets continue to manage his workload in back-to-back games. He is expected to play Saturday against the Clippers in Los Angeles.

Both the Rockets (2-3) and Kings (1-4) entered the season eying the playoffs, but have stumbled early. This is a good opportunity for one to build momentum. Between the home team (Sacramento) and the team with its best player (Houston, James Harden), I’m taking the Rockets.

The Warriors look unbeatable. I doubt the Cousin-less Kings challenge them Saturday.

Maybe it’s time to bet on Sacramento firing George Karl. Cousins’ absence should be a mitigating factor, but that didn’t save Michael Malone.

The Kings are already in a hole and staring up at the prospect of it getting deeper.

If you’re a Comcast subscriber in Northern California, you can stream tonight’s Kings-Rockets game here.

Marcus Morris: Suns never respected me, ‘I want to disrespect them’

Markieff Morris, Marcus Morris

AUBURN HILLS, Mich. – Marcus Morris said the Suns trading him without informing him was a “slap in the face.”

Really, he says his problems with the franchise run much deeper.

“I felt disrespected the entire time I was in Phoenix,” Morris said. “Even though I was playing well, I still didn’t feel like I had a real opportunity to grow. Anytime a team trades you away like that, it’s a slap in the face. I still feel disrespected, and I feel like I want to disrespect them.”

Morris will get that chance tonight, when his Pistons visit the Suns.

But this raises the question: Why did Morris sign a contract extension with Phoenix? He had been with the Suns more than a year-and-a-half when he and his twin brother, Markieff Morris, re-upped for $20 million over four years and $32 million over four years, respectively.

“It was really just to stay with my brother, because we wanted to play together,” Marcus said. “That was one of our main goals, and we wasn’t being greedy. A lot of players in this league, they stick, they stick, and they dig. They want all the money. And some of them are not even worth it. I thought just for us to stay together the next four years for $50 million was worth it to us. From where I come from, that’s a lot of money.”

As those contracts look team-friendly, a reporter suggested Marcus was good to the Suns.

“I was great to them,” he said. “…I let relationships overcome business, and that’ll never happen again. So, I’m learning from it. My brother’s learning from it. I’m going to continue to grow.”

Marcus seems happy starting in Detroita role he coveted in Phoenix. Markieff says he wants to be with the Suns after practically daring them to trade him.

But I’m not entirely convinced either has put this behind them. For better or worse, both are blunt and emotional – a combination that could lead to an interesting matchup tonight.

Think of the children: Why LeBron James is wearing shorter shorts

Tony Allen, LeBron James

LeBron James has worn noticeably shorter shorts this season.

It’s apparently more than a matter of comfort.

Chris Haynes of

He had expressed to those close to him he wants to leave the baggy look behind and place a renewed emphasis on professional appearance when it comes to the size of his uniform

As James is the biggest name in the league and arguably in all of sports, he feels an obligation to shift the minds of kids on what is considered fashionable and acceptable. The kids who will play in the NBA in the future look to today’s players as role models.

“I’m always thinking about ways I can be of help,” James told “That’s what it’s about, making sure you’re doing your part.”

I didn’t realize baggy shorts were a poor influence on the kids. Think of all the poor children who rooted for LeBron before this season. Can they still be saved?

LeBron has done plenty to serve as a positive role model. This isn’t it.

There’s a time and place for different clothing. If baggy shorts make you comfortable on the basketball court, you should wear baggy shorts. There’s nothing inherently wrong with loose shorts. Some people might have an issue with the type of people they believe wear baggy shorts, but that’s their problem. Nobody should conform to those concerns.

Besides, if LeBron deems uniform decorum so important, how does he explain this?

Mike Dunleavy celebrates Bulls’ 60s Night in style (photo)

Mike Dunleavy, Luol Deng

The Bulls wore retro jerseys to celebrate 60s night during their win over the Thunder last night.

But I doubt anyone got into the spirit more than an injured Mike Dunleavy sitting on the bench.