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Tracy McGrady: ‘Anybody can win a championship. Everybody can’t get in the Hall of Fame’


Tracy McGrady will be inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame.

In his prime, with the Magic and Rockets, McGrady absolutely looked like a Hall of Famer. He was a dynamic scorer who could shoot 3-pointers and attack the rim, and he added plenty of complementary skills.

His case is hindered by two points: He lacked productive longevity, a 15-year career bookended by uneven play as a teenager with the Raptors and injury-limited performances with the Knicks, Pistons and Hawks in later years. And he never won a title.

McGrady, via Tom Westerholm of MassLive:

“Social media can give a lot of people voices these days, and the first thing they say is ‘No rings, no rings,'” McGrady said on Friday, in an appearance at the Hall of Fame’s 60 Days of Summer Program. “You have to have a great team and some luck to get a ring, right? Unfortunately, I wasn’t blessed with that. But I go back at them with this: Anybody can win a championship. Everybody can’t get in the Hall of Fame.”

McGrady is right. Darko Milicic, Adam Morrison, Eddy Curry and numerous lesser forgotten players have won championships. A ring devoid of context is a lesser individual accomplishment than Hall of Fame enshrinement.

But it’s not just that McGrady never won a title.

He didn’t win a single playoff series until he was playing spot minutes for the Spurs in his final season – and the Hall of Fame essentially said that didn’t count. Though McGrady still frequently posted quality individual production in the postseason and his teammates often left plenty to be desired, that lack of team success raises legitimate questions. Was McGrady mentally tough enough? Was he a good leader? Did he elevate his teammates? Could he still excel when defenses clamped down? Did he do enough things that don’t show up in the box score to contribute to winning?

I’m not so concerned about McGrady never winning a title. We should do a better job of separating individual success from team success, and too much of winning a championship escapes a player’s control.

But winning a single playoff-series victory as a rotation player? That’s a far lower bar, and McGrady’s failure to do so is more of a red flag.

“Ray Allen from long distance” with chip shot to save par at American Century Classic

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“Ray Allen from long distance, how many times have we said that?”

Ray Allen had a good weekend at the American Century Championships, the former NBA sharpshooter and future Hall of Famer finished third in the celebrity golf event. One of the reasons he was there, this chip shot on 13 Sunday.

Former Cowboy’s quarterback Tony Romo won the event, with former MLB pitcher Mark Mulder was second.

LeBron James sits courtside for Lakers’ Summer League win

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There are two, maybe three guys playing for the Lakers in Summer League likely to be sharing a locker room with LeBron James next season — Isaac Bonga and Josh Hart, with maybe Sviatoslav Mykhailiuk and/or Alex Caruso. Only Hart could see the court much.

LeBron was still courtside on Sunday for a quarterfinal game at Summer League, showing his support and being a good teammate. He gave Hart a hug on the court. Brandon Ingram stopped by and talked with LeBron for a bit.

LeBron watched the Lakers continue their strong run through the Summer League, racking up a 101-78 win. LeBron was into it, when Mykhailiuk took a shot midway through the first quarter LeBron yelled, ‘cash only!”  The shot was nothing but net.

The Lakers are on to the Summer League semifinals. Los Angeles won the Vegas Summer League last year.


After losing to his father in golf, Stephen Curry leaps into Lake Tahoe


Golf fanatic Stephen Curry was clearly enjoying himself on the links at the American Century Championship celebrity golf event in Lake Tahoe this past weekend.

But he couldn’t beat his father, Dell.

The price? Curry (and his caddy) had to jump in the lake. Check out the video above.

For the record, Tony Romo won the event.


Spurs’ pick Chimezie Metu to miss time with fractured wrist

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Chimezie Metu showed some promise in the Summer League games he played for San Antonio, scoring 12.5 points a game on 55 percent shooting in Las Vegas, and 10.7 per game on 54 percent shooting in Salt Lake City. The second round pick of the Spurs (No. 49 overall) is raw and needs a lot of development, but he can get buckets. The potential is there.

That development is going to be on hold a while, as what was thought to be a sprained wrist has turned out to be a fracture.

From Tom Osborn of the San Antonio Express-News.

After an examination Saturday, the Spurs medical staff downgraded second-round pick Chimezie Metu’s left wrist injury from a sprain to a fracture, a league source said Saturday.

Metu was injured late in the Spurs’ 95-90 win over Washington on July 8 at the Las Vegas Summer League, when he landed awkwardly after leaping to catch a lob pass at the rim. The 6-foot-10 big man finished the game but was sidelined for the remainder of the schedule.

After undergoing X-rays at the Thomas & Mack Center, Metu was diagnosed with a sprain. But Spurs’ team doctors suspected a possible fracture, which was confirmed after Metu returned to San Antonio on Saturday.

Metu should be good to go by training camp. Metu is hoping his summer and training camp play will earn him a roster spot, although the Spurs tend not to sign second-round picks the year they were drafted (they tend to let them spend a year or two in the G-League or in Europe). A lot of his chances on making the roster depend on any other moves the Spurs make this summer and what their roster looks like come the fall.