John Krolik

David West’s agent says David West is healthy

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From Yahoo! Sports’ Adrian Wojnarowski:

Free agent David West, one of top players on market, has doctor’s full clearance to return after ACL surgery, agent Lance Young tells Y!

West averaged 18.9 points and 7.6 rebounds last season, and his combination of a good inside game and a reliable pick-and-pop jump shot has made him Chris Paul’s favorite target over the past several seasons. Unfortunately, West tore his ACL in late March of last season, and missed the remainder of the season and the playoffs.

The lockout puts West in an awkward position — he has had more time to rehab his knee and try to get back to 100% than he normally would have, but he was in position to command a huge payday this off-season, and the lockout has prevented that from happening. One has to imagine that the Hornets will pay top dollar in order to keep the 31-year old West, if only because they will have an extremely difficult time Chris Paul in New Orleans next off-season if they don’t have West on the roster.

This is a video from Russia of Andrei Kirilenko dancing the Macarena

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I’m guessing that this was hosted by Kirilenko’s new Russian team, which would honestly make me look at the Heat’s “welcome party” from last off-season in an entirely new light. (I’m not sure if I would like it more, I’d just think of it differently.) If Kirilenko’s giant World of Warcraft back tattoo had been visible in this video, I think it would have officially been the most random event of the off-season. Shine on, Andrei Kirilenko.

Blake Griffin cuts foot, will miss OKC charity game

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According to’s Marc Stein, Clippers forward, reigning Rookie of the Year, reigning Dunk Contest Champion, and former Oklahoma college superstar Blake Griffin will not be playing in a star-studded exhibition game this Sunday because of a cut he suffered while in the ocean:

Los Angeles Clippers star Blake Griffin has been forced to pull out of the Sunday charity exhibition game in Oklahoma City co-headlined by Kevin Durant because of a cut on his right foot, according to sources close to Griffin.

The former Oklahoma standout sustained a cut while in the ocean that required “a few stitches,” according to one source.

The injury is not serious, sources said, but will prevent Griffin from playing in the game Sunday night at the Cox Convention Center in Oklahoma City, which holds roughly 14,000 for basketball games.

While players like LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, and Chris Paul will also be participating in the game, CBS’ Royce Young does make the point that Griffin being out takes away from the game’s “battle for Oklahoma” storyline, as Durant is the best player in Thunder history and Griffin had one of the best Oklahoma college careers in recent memory.

Quote of the day: Billy Hunter is frustrated, metaphorically armed


“If someone wants to point a gun at my head, I’ll point it right back at him.” 

-NBAPA chief Billy Hunter at the NBPA press conference, regarding David Stern’s comments about the possible cancellation of games until Christmas if a new CBA deal doesn’t get worked out soon. Reading between the lines just a little bit here, I’d say that negotiations are going less than swimmingly right now — it might be time to re-aquatint yourself with your local hockey team pretty soon.

What the 76ers should do if the lockout ends


This is the latest installment of PBT’s series of “What your team should do when the lockout ends.” Up next is the Philadelphia 76ers. You can also check out our thoughts on other NBA teams here as we work our way through all 30 squads.

After a miserable 09-10 campaign, the 76ers made their way back to respectability last season, earning a playoff berth and putting up a decent fight in the 1st round against the eventual conference champion Heat. Despite #2 overall pick Evan Turner having a disappointing season, the 76ers responded to new coach Doug Collins, and were one of the 10 best defensive teams in the league. Here’s what the 76ers can do to build on last season’s playoff birth:

1. Make a decision on Andre Iguodala

The 76ers owe Iguodala approximately 14 million dollars this season and next season, and Iguodala has a $15 million player option for the season after that. At this point in his career, we know who Iguodala is: a great perimeter defender who’s a terror on the fast break, can contribute without the ball in his hands, can make open threes on occasion, and a player who is not capable of being an efficient #1 option offensively. The 76ers have to decide whether they want to move ahead with Iguodala, which would probably make them better in the short-term, or try to get rid of his contract and go into more of a full rebuild mode — again.

2. Get more out of Evan Turner

One year after an absolute monster campaign at Ohio State, Turner struggled throughout his rookie season. Turner averaged only seven points, four rebounds, and two assists per game last year, and is PER was an ugly 10.87. It’s way, way, way too early to give up on Turner, but he needs to make major strides in his sophomore campaign. Turner needs to get comfortable shooting from beyond the NBA three-point line, figure out how to break down defenses with his passing, and go to the hoop more aggressively when he decides to drive.

3. Continue to believe in the youth movement

Thaddeus Young, Louis Williams, and Jrue Holliday all had promising seasons for the 76ers, and were among the main reasons the team made it into the playoffs. Marreese Speights had a down year in 2010-11, but he had been showing a lot of promise before this season. If those players continue to develop, Turner finds his game, and the 76ers can find a way to seamlessly transition out of the Brand/Iguodala era, they could be a very good team for a while under Doug Collins.