Author: Dan Feldman

Carmelo Anthony, LeBron James, Kyrie Irving

Report: NBA All-Star jerseys will have an advertisement


Update: NBA owners did approve this deal when signing the new national TV contracts, according to Darren Rovell of ESPN:

The deal is technically an ad buy, as Turner, in its latest TV deal negotiations, asked the NBA if it would be willing to allow the network to offer real estate on the game jersey to make an in-game advertising buy more appealing and valuable.

I still believe getting owners to approve advertising on uniforms as an independent measure could be challenging. But that they’d do it as a provision of a larger deal says something — that when billions are in play, it’s not the time to worry about jersey clutter.


Adam Silver has called advertising on NBA jerseys “inevitable,” but the NBA commissioner has said he didn’t know how soon it would come.

Now we have a date: Feb. 13, 2016.

Sara Germano of The Wall Street Journal:

​The National Basketball Association is planning to put a​ sponsored​ 3.25-inch-by-1.6-inch​ patch​ with a Kia Motors Corp. logo on the upper left chest of player jerseys for both the 2016 and 2017 All-Star games, according to the league. ​

By debuting sponsor patches on All-Star jerseys, bypassing approval from team owners, the NBA was able to sidestep a few logistical hurdles.

This probably a good way to introduce jersey ads to the public. Advertising on jerseys is nothing new for All-Star weekend, and nobody is going to defend the sanctity of All-Star jerseys. But, after such a plain look last season, All-Star uniforms with advertising could look particularly garish.

This is clearly a step toward advertising on regular-season jerseys – but I’m not sure how big of one. Some old-school NBA owners don’t want this, and sidestepping them here doesn’t mean they’ll change their mind.

Of course, money wins most arguments. If these over-branded All-Star jerseys sell as well usual, owners might want to collect that advertising revenue throughout the year.

Andrea Bargnani airballs 3-pointer, and Lionel Hollins can’t handle life (video)

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Andrea Bargnani actually played well in his Nets debut, scoring 17 points on 13 shots and grabbing seven rebounds in 22 minutes.

But his lone 3-point attempt – boy, oh boy, did it do a number on Brooklyn coach Lionel Hollins.

Thabo Sefolosha: I think my defense on LeBron James could’ve turned ECF

LeBron James, Thabo Sefolosha

Thabo Sefolosha was found not guilty of three charges stemming from a confrontation with police.

His on-the-record public accounts of the incident have been segmented – his testimony, an interview here or there.

But now the Hawks wing is thoroughly detailing that night and its aftermath.

Sefolosha, via Nathaniel Penn of GQ:

An officer came over to me and said, “Get the hell out!” I said, “Did I do something wrong? You can talk to me in a nicer way.” I didn’t quite understand why he had to come at us so hard when there were so many other people around. We moved, but he kept telling us to get the hell out. I told him we were listening to him: “You are the police, but you don’t have to act like you’re the toughest guy on earth.” He said, “With or without a badge, I can fuck you up.” Like, whatever. We’re not about to find out. I’m the last guy who gets physical with anybody, especially the police. At the same time, I felt singled out for no reason. He was much shorter than me. [Sefolosha is six feet seven.] I said, “You’re a midget, and you’re mad.” I voiced my opinion, but I kept moving.

One officer pulled me from my right arm, another grabbed me on my left, and another grabbed me on the back of my neck. I’m in, like, an on-a-cross type of position. I couldn’t even move. It was just chaos. I had never been arrested before. I understood a little bit late that they were trying to put me on the ground, but if somebody grabs your arms and pulls you on your neck, you fall face first.

Somebody kicked my leg, more than once, from the back to force me to the ground. I knew something had happened as soon as they did it; I’m an athlete, so I know how my body should feel. They were stepping on my foot, too, I guess to try to keep me there. I didn’t feel like there was anything I could do to calm it down. I tried to show them I was cooperating. I tried.

I don’t get a lot of publicity for it because I never toot my own horn, but yeah, I think I’m possibly the best, or one of the best, defenders in this league. Not in a selfish way, but I like to think that maybe with me, we would have had a chance to win a title. I think I would have done a great job on LeBron [whose Cavs defeated the Hawks in the Conference Finals]. Watching my team from the bench was the worst experience a basketball player can have.

That last point will essential for Sefolosha’s lawsuit. Lawyers will actually argue in court whether the Hawks would’ve beaten Cleveland if they had Sefolosha.

Here’s what we know: The Cavaliers swept swept the Hawks with LeBron James averaging 30.3, 11.0 and 9.3 points per game.

Past that, it’s all conjecture.

Do I think Sefolosha would’ve given the Hawks a better chance? Yes. He was excellent wing defender and maybe would’ve been Atlanta’s best chance on LeBron with DeMarre Carroll playing through an on-court injury.

Do I think the Hawks would’ve won with Sefolosha? No. LeBron and the Cavaliers were on another level after the trade deadline. Atlanta, which overachieved throughout most of the season, couldn’t keep up.

In my adjusted ratings using projected postseason rotations, Cleveland had offensive/defensive/net ratings of 118.2/101.0 /+17.2. The system was down on the Sefolosha-less Hawks, who came in at 109.9/104.9/+5.0. But even adding Sefolosha would’ve improved their marks to just 110.5/103.8/+6.7 – well below the Cavaliers.

That’s just a cursory look, though. The courtroom debate about Sefolosha’s effect on the specific matchup will be intriguing.

I’m also interested in the other issues Sefolosha addresses. How often do police officers – intentionally or not – escalate confrontations or give unclear directions and then use the resulting circumstances to justify force? That’s a much wider problem then debating the 2015 Eastern Conference finals, and it’s one that must be addressed.

Wilson Chandler expects to miss two weeks

Wilson Chandler, Kevin Durant

The Nuggets gave Wilson Chandler a contract extension this summer, using some of their cap space to increase his salary this season in exchange for paying him less in later years. I think the driving force was increasing Chandler’s trade value, as most projected Denver to require a deeper rebuild.

But a surprising 105-85 win over the Rockets yesterday should cause people to at least reevaluate expectations.

Unfortunately for the Nuggets, if they plan a playoff push this season, it’ll begin without Chandler.

Christopher Dempsey of The Denver Post:

The Nuggets forward was with the team Wednesday night in Houston for the season opener, but he watched in street clothes as he works to return to the court. He’s officially day to day, but Chandler said he expects the recovery to take “a couple of weeks.”

“Not really serious, but something that you want to take your time with,” Chandler said. “No surgery needed, not a long period of the season missed. Just kind of like a day-to-day thing, couple of weeks. Like a strain in the hamstring.”

Gary Harris started against Houston, and he’ll probably go to the bench once Chandler returns. But Denver coach Michael Malone could slide Danilo Gallinari to power forward and start both Harris and Chandler.

The Nuggets are versatile, a trait that will only expand once Chandler is healthy. Chandler, a 3-and-D wing with more offensive range than that label implies, is a starting-caliber player.

HBut his absence, even for just a couple weeks, could loom large. The margin for error in the loaded Western Conference is just so slim.

Pistons two games over .500 for first time in 6.5 years

Andre Drummond

Lately, the Pistons have ruined their season before it really got off the ground.

In the last six years, Detroit has started 11-25, 0-5, 4-20, 0-8, 2-5 and 3-19.

From there, the Pistons have just been doomed. Only a furious run after waiving Josh Smith got them to 32-50 last season, their best final record in that span.

So, Detroit’s 2-0 start – with wins over the Hawks and Jazz – is pretty remarkable.

This is the first time the Pistons have been two games over .500 in about six-and-a-half years – 2,420 days to be precise.

It’s less than half as long for the team with the next-longest two-games-over-.500 drought entering the season – the Magic at 1,088 days. And everyone else has at least five months on Orlando.

Here’s that crazy stat visualized,with the date each team was last two games over .500 entering this season. Scroll wayyyy down to see the Pistons.

two games over .500