Dan Feldman

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 05:  Austin Rivers #25 of the Los Angeles Clippers dribbles upcourt during an NBA game between Los Angeles Clippers vs Los Angeles Lakers April 5, 2016 at Staples Center in Los Angeles, California.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)
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Austin Rivers drops ball before first pitch at Dodgers game (video)


Austin Riversnumerous gaffes are so prevalent, even his Clippers teammates make fun of them.

Here’s another.

Rivers threw out the first pitch at the Dodgers game the other night, and just waking to the rubber with the ball proved challenging:

But, like with his easily mockable basketball plays, they obscure a better-than-realized substance. Rivers still threw a fine first pitch – especially for someone who said he had never thrown a baseball before:

Report: Timberwolves signing Rasual Butler

PHOENIX, AZ - FEBRUARY 21:  Rasual Butler #18 of the San Antonio Spurs handles the ball during the NBA game against the Phoenix Suns at Talking Stick Resort Arena on February 21, 2016 in Phoenix, Arizona. The Spurs defeated the Suns 118-111.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
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As they talk buyout with Kevin Garnett, the Timberwolves might soon have a roster opening.

Could Rasual Butler work his way onto yet another team?

Shams Charania of Yahoo Sports:

The 37-year-old Butler just knows how make the most of his 3-and-D skills after 13 NBA seasons. Minnesota already has Brandon Rush in that role off the bench, but these are the types of players teams can never have too many of as the league goes smaller.

Bucks waive Xavier Henry, reportedly sign Jabari Brown

OAKLAND, CA - MARCH 16:  Jabari Brown #15 of the Los Angeles Lakers in action against the Golden State Warriors at ORACLE Arena on March 16, 2015 in Oakland, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
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With Khris Middleton out for nearly the entire season and the Bucks lacking wing depth, their training-competition at the position becomes much more relevant.

The Xavier Henry experiment ends before it begins, and Jabari Brown enters the mix with Orlando Johnson already on an unguaranteed deal.

NBA transactions:

Milwaukee Bucks waived forward Xavier Henry.

Marc J. Spears of The Undefeated:

Milwaukee has 15 players, the regular-season roster limit, with guaranteed salaries. It’s unclear whom the Bucks would drop if Brown proves deserving of a roster spot – a lower bar considering Milwaukee is so desperate at wing.

Brown is a good outside shooter, but he has a ways to go defensively. At 23, he offers some upside, but the Bucks need help now.

Correction: This post previously said Rasual Butler is signing with Milwaukee. He’s signing with the Timberwolves.

Report: NBA not planning to change rule requiring players to stand for national anthem

CLEVELAND, OH - JUNE 16:  A general view during the national anthem before Game 6 of the 2016 NBA Finals between the Cleveland Cavaliers and the Golden State Warriors at Quicken Loans Arena on June 16, 2016 in Cleveland, Ohio. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
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The NBA and union are discussing how to handle expected national-anthem protests, a movement started by 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick kneeling during the Star Spangled Banner in objection to police brutality against blacks.

Unlike the NFL, the NBA has an explicit rule for the anthem: “Players, coaches and trainers are to stand and line up in a dignified posture along the sidelines or on the foul line during the playing of the National Anthem.”

Brian Windhorst of ESPN:

The league is not currently planning to change the rule, sources said.

Instead, the league and union seem to be pitching a much more placid approach. Marc J. Spears of The Undefeated:

Everything in that memo is great. Players can use their platform to call forums and mentor. Basketball brings people together.

But the uncomfortable truth is kneeling during the anthem has brought more attention to the real issue – mistreatment of blacks in America – than anything else Kaepernick could’ve done. It might just take offending sensibilities to get people’s attention, but once Kaepernick had the spotlight, he delivered a powerful message.

NBA players can do the same, even if it requires breaking the rule.

The question remains whether the league will change how it punishes violators of the rule. Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf was suspended in 1996 for refusing to stand for the anthem. Would NBA commissioner Adam Silver enact the same penalty now? Just because the rule remains on the books doesn’t mean it requires the same enforcement, because no consequence for violating it is explicitly stated.

Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson reportedly beats up protester who hit him in face with pie

SACRAMENTO, CA - SEPTEMBER 11: Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson speaks on stage during a parade honoring
Alek Skarlatos, Anthony Sadler, and Spencer Stone for their August 21 actions in overpowering a gunman on a Paris-bound train on September 11, 2015 in Sacramento, California. Thousands lined the street along Capitol Mall to celebrate their hometown heroes. (Photo by Stephen Lam/ Getty Images)
Stephen Lam/ Getty Images

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — A man hit Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson in the face with a pie at a charity dinner Wednesday night, and an official says the former NBA star went on the defensive. One report describes Johnson’s actions as far more offensive.

The mayor — who has faced multiple accusations of sexual misconduct and corruption — had given a speech at the Seeds of HOPE dinner at Sacramento Charter High School before the man came up, pulled the pie from a bag and shoved it into Johnson’s face, the mayor’s Chief of Staff Crystal Strait said.

She said the mayor defended himself against the man, but she would not give details.

Nick Miller of the East Bay Express:

After this, the protester reportedly said something to Johnson. This prompted the mayor to allegedly tackle the protester and punch him in the face “repeatedly,” more than half a dozen times, landing “five to 10” blows.

One witness described it as a “bloody pulp.” Other witnesses say that the pie-thrower was hit multiple times in the face and will definitely need stitches, and that there was visible blood.


Strait emphasized that it was a genuinely serious and scary situation, and there was nothing funny about it.

“The mayor was assaulted. I was standing right there and I’m still pretty shaken up,” Strait said, speaking some three hours after it happened.

Police agreed. They arrested 32-year-old Sean Thompson on suspicion of assaulting a public official, which is a felony, the Sacramento Police Department said in a statement.

Thompson was treated for a minor injury before he was taken to be booked into jail. It wasn’t clear if he had retained an attorney.

Both police and Strait said Thompson was previously unknown to the mayor and his staff.

After he cleaned up, Johnson spoke again to the audience to calm nerves at the event, which was held in the school’s garden and featured many of the city’s top restaurateurs.

Johnson, who had a long career as an NBA All-Star with the Phoenix Suns and a brief stint with the Cleveland Cavaliers before becoming mayor, has about two months left as mayor after deciding not to seek a third term.

The 50-year-old is married to Michelle Rhee, a former chancellor of Washington, D.C., schools, who was at the event Wednesday night.

Johnson’s signature achievement in office was getting a $500 million arena built for the city’s NBA team, the Sacramento Kings.

His final two years in office were marked by the re-emergence of a decades-old claim of sexual abuse from a woman who was a teenager at the time, when Johnson played for the Suns. The Phoenix Police Department investigated but did not file charges.

Johnson has both denied the allegations and denied that they had anything to do with his decision to leave office.