Wednesday And-1 links: Team USA on Segways

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After a little hiatus, here is our regular look around the NBA — links to stories worth reading and notes to check out (stuff that did not get its own post here at PBT) — done in bullet point form. Because bloggers love bullet points.

• As you can see from the photo to the right, Deron Williams, Kevin Durant and James Harden went tooling around Barcelona on Segways. Even they cannot look cool riding a Segway. And how tall does this make Durant?

• Yao Ming things Jeremy Lin landing in Houston is a great fit.

• The Grizzlies want to bring back Iranian big man Hamed Haddadi and are working to re-sign him.

• How consistently you drain threes depends on arc and form. But arc is key.

• The Celtics have signed Dionte Christmas to a partially guaranteed contract (which means they can cut him and not pay him everything, consider this a camp invite).

We showed you earlier why Raptors fans should be pumped, but just a reminder that they inked Jonas Valanciunas to his rookie contract.

• NBA stat heads are going to love what is coming to NBA.com. You can bet you’ll be seeing some of that here.

• Want to have dinner with Magic Johnson then head to courtside seats for a Lakers game? You can do it, it’s the prize in an online charity auction to support RUSH Philanthropic Arts Foundation’s (which works to bring New York City’s underprivileged children access and exposure to the arts). So, it’s going to cost you a few bucks. But, it goes to a good cause. You can bid now through Aug. 8.

• Or man Rob Mahoney breaks down why Dallas bringing back Delonte West was a very good thing.

• O.J. Mayo could have selected a lot of places to play, but he wanted Dallas to be the spot.

• Grant Hill is happy to be a Clipper. Three years ago we never wrote that sentence about anyone.

• This is what Rockets GM Daryl Morey sounds like when testy in an interview.

Jerry West talks Steve Nash to the Lakers and Dwight Howard.

• This is a little old, but Josh Smith is pumped about the upcoming season in Atlanta — and thinks Dwight Howard would be, too.

Report: Dennis Smith Jr. rejoins Mavericks after reconciling with Rick Carlisle

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Second-year guard Dennis Smith Jr. has been rumored to be on the trade block. The Dallas Mavericks guard hasn’t seen eye-to-eye with coach Rick Carlisle, and several teams have expressed interest in Smith. It appeared that Smith was all set to join another team as part of a swap as we approach the trade deadline.

A report on Sunday on the latest from Dallas has changed all that. According to The Athletic, Smith and Carlisle have had productive talks and the 21-year-old is set to rejoin the team for their game on Tuesday.

Via Twitter:

Smith hasn’t made the kind of leap the Mavericks were hoping for. Despite an offensive explosion across the league, he hasn’t seen his advanced numbers experience a significant bump. Smith’s flaws are that of a young player — shooting and decision-making — so any additional communication with coaches will be a good thing for him.

Who knows is he and Carlisle can ever heal the wound fully, but it felt too soon to press the eject button on a Top 10 pick like Smith for Mavs fans.

Lakers PG Lonzo Ball will miss 4-6 weeks with ankle sprain

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The Los Angeles Lakers have been dealt another injury loss.

Lakers PG Lonzo Ball, part of the young core the team is trying to develop around LeBron James, suffered an ankle sprain against the Houston Rockets on Saturday. The team release via their website said Ball would be re-evaluated but could mis 4-6 weeks.

Via Lakers:

Lakers guard Lonzo Ball, who was injured in last night’s game at Houston, underwent an MRI which revealed a Grade 3 left ankle sprain. Ball is expected to miss 4-6 weeks and updates will be provided as appropriate.

Ball had to be carried from the court after he collided with James Ennis during a play in the third quarter. Ball appeared to step on Ennis’ foot when the Rockets player tried to cut him off from the basket.

LA has had a rough go of it since LeBron injured his groin some 13 games ago. The Lakers have also been without Rajon Rondo, and have had a tough time winning games. The team, once thoroughly in the playoff race, has now dipped to ninth place in the West.

James and Rondo have been cleared for basketball activities, and they need their veteran leadership now more than ever heading into the All-Star break.

Watch the Bulls’ tribute video for Dwyane Wade

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Dwyane Wade is a Chicago native but the Miami Heat guard only played in the Windy City for a short amount of time. Wade was a member of the Chicago Bulls for 60 games in 2016-17 despite having signed a massive contract with the team in July of 2016.

Wade is now back where he belongs in Miami, and he’s been on a bit of a farewell tour across the NBA. As such, the Bulls felt it prudent to show a little tribute video for Wade before the final game he was to play at United Center.

Via Twitter:

How Bulls fans feel about Wade probably depends on who you ask, but a tribute video from the organization is a classy touch no matter what.

Wade has done jersey swaps with players around the league and in Chicago he got a special one: Benny the Bull.

‘One Piece’ fans are trying to get Steven Adams into All-Star Game

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There’s been a lot of clever NBA All-Star marketing over the years. Portland Trail Blazers guard CJ McCollum did a “Napoleon Dynamite”-themed video for his buddy Damian Lillard this season. The Toronto Raptors made a faux-vintage action figure ad for Kawhi Leonard.

Now it appears that anime website Crunchyroll is trying to get “One Piece” fans to vote for Oklahoma City Thunder big man Steven Adams.

Adams is a fan of anime, and has professed his admiration for the show “One Piece” before. Adams made mention about how he was watching the show instead of Kevin Durant‘s debut with the Golden State Warriors a while back. In turn, Crunchyroll — a streaming site — made a video trying to get people to vote for Adams in the NBA fan vote.

Via Twitter:

That’s pretty good, but will it be enough? We know the fan vote gets wild, especially with favorites who are sort of undeserving (Derrick Rose and Luka Doncic come to mind). Could a big push from the anime crowd help Adams, who is an excellent player but who has never been an All-Star, notch his first bid?