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Jaylen Brown on LeBron should “shut up and dribble” comment: “That’s a narrative… it’s time to move on from it”


LOS ANGELES — “Stick to sports.”

It’s the intellectually lazy argument (and attempt to demean) used when people disagree with the opinion of an athlete (or media member covering athletes). Fox News host Laura Ingraham took that sentiment to new — and for my money racist — level this week. When LeBron James and Kevin Durant did what many other Americans did and took to social media to call out president Donald Trump (taped before but released around the time of Trump’s comments following the horrific school shooting in Florida that left 17 dead), Ingram responded with a rant on her show about how LeBron should “shut up and dribble.”

Boston Celtic forward Jaylen Brown said it’s time to move on from the idea that athletes should only talk about or have interest in their sport.

“That’s a narrative, I don’t know who’s painting it, but it’s been there for a long time, and I think it’s time to move on from it,” Brown said hours before taking the court for the All-Star Friday Rising Stars Challenge. “I think it’s time to move to a new generation where you have a job, and you do your job well, but you also have other interests outside of that, and that’ll be okay. You don’t get backlash from it. Especially if you want to do something where you want to be a musician or a politician, or you want to be something else like a venture capitalist like Steph Curry, anything. I think that’s dope. I think it’s time to move in that direction. I think the time is now.

“The recent comments that been brought up with KD and LeBron chimed in on it, I think that’s a narrative that’s been set for a long time now. It’s on us, as fans, as media, as players, to change that narrative. To make that okay.”

Brown also noted that Ingram picked a poor target in LeBron — the world could use more men who married their high school sweetheart, are devoted fathers, work hard at their job, have never been in legal trouble, and who are not afraid to speak out on issues.

“For me, growing up watching basketball, LeBron’s greatest influence is just being a role model,” Brown said. “Just being an African-American male who’s never been in trouble, you don’t see him in tabloids, you don’t see him involved in anything he shouldn’t be involved in. When he’s talking about something, he’s talking about something of importance. Just seeing that has been fantastic. His team, how he moves, just how he operates — especially in this era where the media and everybody records everything, it’s hard not to fall at some point. I don’t think LeBron ever has, I tip my hat to him. I respect him so much for that.”

LeBron is influencing a generation of young men — not just aspiring basketball players, or athletes (like Olympic skater Nathan Chen) — but men and people in general. It’s the kind of influences we need more of in society, positive ones, and great role models.

And ones who are good at tuning out the people just throwing shade to prop themselves up.

PBT Extra: One last mock draft of NBA lottery

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DeAndre Ayton will go No. 1 to the Phoenix Suns Thursday night. Marvin Bagley III probably goes second to Sacramento (but that’s not a lock).

After that, things get wide open in the 2018 NBA Draft. Teams value different players at very different levels this year, and there are going to be a number of trades.

Which makes putting together a mock draft for this year more random than a roulette wheel. Not that it stopped me. Here is my final mock draft for the 14 lottery picks. I present it without much confidence, but I’m throwing it out there anyway.

Report: Dewayne Dedmon opts in for $6.3 million with Hawks

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The Hawks’ rebuild got going with big John Collins. Though they’re reportedly eying Luka Doncic with the No. 3 pick, they could easily draft another big – Jaren Jackson Jr., Mohamed Bamba, Marvin Bagley or Wendell Carter.

And then there’s veteran center Dewayne Dedmon.

He no longer fits in Atlanta (never did, really). But he’s not bypassing a chance to earn $6.3 million.

Shams Charania of Yahoo Sports:

There just wasn’t going to be that much money for the 28-year-old Dedmon in a tight market this summer.

Dedmon is a good defender, and he developed his ball skills – as a 3-point shooter and passer – in Atlanta last season. The Hawks could look to trade him. Maybe, in a deal primarily about his expiring contract, he adds extra value to the other team due to his playing ability.

If Atlanta doesn’t move him, Dedmon will be a fine player on a likely tanking team. At least he’s not good enough to subvert the Hawks’ tank, especially with the new lottery format.

Nick Young says ‘everybody needs to do cocaine,’ later insists he was joking

AP Photo/Mary Altaffer

Nick Young will say and do nearly anything for attention.

Empowered by the Warriors’ championship, he swung for the fences when asked about Canada passing marijuana legalization.

Young, via TMZ:

“I want people to pass cocaine,” the NBA star told TMZ Sports outside 1 OAK on Tuesday night … “Everybody needs to do cocaine!”

Predictably, that caused a bit of an uproar. Then, Young backtracked:

Chill. You know I was just joking

A post shared by Nick Young (@swaggyp1) on

Too late, Nick. People are already asking questions you don’t want asked.

Report: 76ers trade No. 39 pick to Lakers

AP Photo/Chris Szagola

The 76ers have too many 2018 draft picks – Nos. 10, 26, 38, 39, 56 and 60.

Philadelphia already has 11 players under contract for next season. Plus, the 76ers have the space to add premier players. There just isn’t room for everyone on the roster.

So, Philadelphia unloaded one of those selections.

Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN:

This is good return for the 76ers, who everyone knew had to trade a draft pick. The rebuilding Bulls could easily land a higher second-round pick than No. 39 next year.

Why do the Lakers want an extra second-rounder this year? Second-round picks don’t count against the cap until signed, and they can always slightly sweeten a trade offer. They’re helpful for a team with big plans and little wiggle room.