AP Photo/Gary Kazanjian

Rumor: Team promised to draft Boise State senior Chandler Hutchinson in late first round

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NBA teams are increasingly using three, even four, versatile wings at once. Such lineups can spread the floor, play fast and switch.

But teams haven’t quite caught up to emphasizing wings in the draft. The top seven picks in our mock draft are bigs and point guards.

There are plenty of wings available lower in the draft, though. Is a team particularly intrigued by Boise State senior Chandler Hutchinson?

Jonathan Givony of ESPN:

Hutchinson is a 22-year-old who didn’t really excel until he became older than most of his mid-major-conference competition. I’m skeptical of any prospects of that rough mold.

Hutchinson impresses as a driver – particularly against closeouts or in transition. His strides are long, and he adeptly changes speeds and direction. He finishes well at the rim and even passes well while attacking.

But those opportunities to drive against closeouts won’t exist if his outside shot isn’t a threat. Though he’s significantly improved, his 3-pointer is not reliable. He’s far better on catch-and-shoots than hoisting off the dribble from deep, and he’ll likely eliminate those low-efficiency pull-up attempts while in a smaller role in the pros. So, that should help.

At 6-foot-7 with a 7-foot-1 wingspan, Hutchinson has the physical to defend well in the NBA. But he’ll have a lot to learn after playing in Boise State’s zone.

Hutchinson has a projectable skill set for a league that increasingly desires players of his style. That ought to get him strong consideration. But becoming convinced he’s worth a first-round investment? That’s a tougher case.

Apparently, at least one team is sold, though.

Phoenix council postpones vote on Suns arena renovation

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PHOENIX (AP) — The City Council has postponed a vote on a proposed $230 million renovation of the Talking Stick Resort Arena that would keep the Suns in downtown Phoenix.

The council agreed unanimously Wednesday to postpone a decision until Jan. 23 so residents can attend five public meetings to be held around Phoenix to discuss the project.

Suns owner Robert Sarver reportedly threatened to move the franchise to Seattle or Las Vegas if not given enough public funding.

Suns President and CEO Jason Rowley says the organization looks forward to the public discussions and to answering any questions about the proposed renovation.

The deal would revamp the nearly 30-year-old arena, the oldest in the NBA that is not currently being renovated.

The Suns agreed to a 40-year lease in 1992, but the deal included a provision for the team to opt out at 30 years.

Final minute of Celtics-Wizards featured five-possession, 10-point, no-stoppage stretch (video)

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Crunch time of a close NBA game is awesome.

It’s exponentially better when nobody calls timeout.

The Celtics and Wizards finished with a flourish tonight, Boston coming out ahead in a frenetic final minute. The last minute included two Kyrie Irving 3-pointers (one tightly contested, one extremely deep) and a sharp drive by John Wall (who had just returned to the game from an injury).

After a flow-killing foul in the final few seconds, the Celtics won, 130-25.

More games should be like this.

Jeremy Lamb hits game-winner despite Bismack Biyombo, others Hornets prematurely running on court to celebrate

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The Hornets sure were excited for Jeremy Lamb‘s game-winner against the Pistons tonight.

Too excited.

After Lamb hit a jumper to put Charlotte up two with 0.3 seconds left, several Hornets ran onto the court. Bismack Biyombo was nearly at halfcourt as Detroit tried to inbound! He was so far onto the court, I’m not even sure officials noticed him when dinging Malik Monk – closer to the bench –for the violation.

Ashley Holder:

The Pistons made a technical free throw to cut their deficit to one, but they still had to inbound from under their own basket. Their desperation pass was intercepted, and Charlotte held on for a 108-107 win.

Several Hornets were certainly relieved.

Crazily enough, this isn’t the first time we’ve seen this.

Suns’ T.J. Warren fined $15k for inappropriate language toward official following ejection (video)

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Everyone on the Suns seems frustrated.

In Phoenix’s loss to the Clippers on Monday, T.J. Warren got ejected. And his outburst will cost him extra.

NBA release:

Phoenix Suns forward T.J. Warren has been fined $15,000 for directing inappropriate language toward a game official following his ejection, it was announced today by Kiki VanDeWeghe, Executive Vice President, Basketball Operations.

This wasn’t a lengthy exchange. Warren didn’t linger on the court complaining. He must have said something extremely harsh to warrant two technical fouls and a fine that quickly.

(Despite confusion, the foul preceding the ejection was called on Deandre Ayton, not Warren.)