Ken Berger of Newsday: “But if Wade can maintain the otherworldly level he re-attained in the Olympics, who’s to say Donnie Walsh wouldn’t look at No. 3 and No. 23 in two years and choose the smaller number? “First of all, No. 23 is 23 years old,” Wade said. “He’s young. He’s very young. He’s one of the best players in the game and you only could see him getting better. I’m in a good market in Miami. He’s not in a good market in Cleveland, marketing-wise, so it just makes sense that everyone wants to see one of the best players in one of the best markets. Kobe’s in one of the best markets already in L.A. Everybody wants LeBron in a great market, and that’s why they already put him in a New York jersey. It’s going to be a lot to decide for him. So I just get all the attention off me and throw it on him, so it’s easy.”"
WaitingForNextYear: “Yes, Miami is a larger market than Cleveland, but not by much. Look at the rankings of US TV Markets. There’s Miami-Ft Lauderdale at #16. Not exactly the premiere market Wade makes it out to be. What market is one spot below Miami, at #17? That’s right, Cleveland-Akron (Canton). Take a look at Forbes’ ranking of NBA Team Valuations. The Cavaliers are ranked 7th in the NBA, 2 spots ahead of the Miami Heat. Obviously, we’re not naive. I realize that LeBron is pretty much the sole factor for this, but the point I keep trying to tell everyone is that in today’s society that we live in, with internet, communication, cable TV deals, national TV deals, etc, the Cleveland Cavaliers are able to provide LeBron with the exposure he needs.”
Trevor Smith of Hoops Addict: “While it might be silly to thrust upon a team the duty of upholding the ethics or moral code of an entire city’s fan-base, we do it nonetheless. A team can be the living image of its city. So in those times when a franchise rises above its position as a mere entertainment outlet and serves its community we must stand and applaud. Leslie Alexander has given jaded fans a reason to think twice before dismissing endless NBA Cares commercials as purely public relations pieces where players leave as soon as the camera turns off. Another reason to believe that teams care about their communities: since October of 2005, the league, players and teams have raised more than $88 million for charity, donated more than 660,000 hours of hands-on volunteer service, and built more than 310 learning and playing spaces.”
The Boston Globe: The Boston Celtics Visit the White House [Video]
Sean Deveney of The Sporting News: “The capper on Paul’s weekend of giving back here in his hometown was a bowling tournament—an actual, sanctioned PBA event, the Chris Paul Celebrity Invitational, which paired NBA players with pro bowlers. I am not at liberty to say who won, because the event is going to be shown on ESPN in October and I’d hate to spoil the ending. But there are a few things I can say. One, the red carpet on the linoleum was funny, but just as funny was the sight of all five of the NBA guys sitting next to each other in bowling shirts, their names stitched on the back like five members of a Wednesday night league.”
Eric Musselman’s Basketball Notebook: Are you daydreaming?
Rick Bonnell of The Charlotte Observer: “Gminski mentioned something a bit off the topic we were discussing, but certainly worth passing on: That dumb jocks have little chance of succeeding under Brown, because his system is so complex and changes over the course of each season. “He loves the gym and he loves to tinker — plays, he will tinker with them all season,’’ said Gminski, the smartest player I’ve covered in the NBA. “He’ll change a play four times in the course of a season. That means the point guard has got to be on top of things, and when you have four variations on each play, you have to have smart players.”"
Mark Madsen: “I’ve played with two big men in my career whose passing skill is off the charts: Shaq, and Oliver Miller. People don’t realize it, but Shaq has a lot of games where he gets five or six assists. And I personally used to watch Oliver Miller whip behind the back passes FROM THE POST to our shooter on the three point line. I predict Kevin Love to be in this group in terms of making other people around him better. Despite being very close to giving me a new gold tooth in my smile, I saw some impressive things from K. Love in just our first day. He shoots, he’s very athletic, and he rebounds….and he’s unselfish. That’s a very nice combo for a big man in today’s game. He’s going to make a serious run at rookie of the year in my opinion. Kevin also gets something that he didn’t get in college playing here in MN. He gets to play alongside a budding all star in Al Jefferson who along wth Tim Duncan and Shaq are probably the 3 best pure post players in the league.”
NetsDaily: “You hear it and see it all the time: Vince Carter’s next injury is just around the corner. He will wince, dog it, and the Nets’ season will be over. It happens all the time, the pundits claim. It’s as certain as summer fading into fall, the winter snows. But it’s not true. In spite of all that punditry and conventional wisdom, Carter is not injury prone, at least not since he joined the Nets. Among the top 50 players who’ve been in the league at least four years, Carter ranks fifth in terms of fewest games lost.”
Blazer’s Edge: Do former NBA players make better coaches?
Paul Coro of The Arizona Republic: “And for the frequent questions about what kind of shape Shaquille O’Neal is in, there is good feeback natually from the Suns folk. It did not look too promising after O’Neal walked out of exit interview day saying he would be in Phoenix this summer to work out with the Suns staff. He ended up being spotted everywhere but the Valley this summer but his weight is said to be in line with what the Suns hoped to see him at entering camp. He scrimmaged twice this week, even making a nimble move when he was knocked down to do a fluid, backward somersault and come to his feet. He has been working out the past two years with Ultimate Fighting Championship legend Royce Gracie up to four times a week.”
True Blue Jazz: Jazz Announce New Variable Ticket Pricing Plans
Jan Hubbard of The Star-Telegram: “Because of Josh Howard’s words and actions, there is little doubt that he has lost credibility with the sporting public. And I’m not talking about the lunatic fringe that has been sending hateful e-mails to Mavericks owner Mark Cuban and reporters. I’m talking about the average fan — like my doctor, who just shook his head and said he has lost confidence in Howard as a player. I’m talking about fans who have expressed sadness that a young man who has been so successful could be so thoughtless. And I would feel safe in saying that Howard has no idea what a difficult year he faces. While it’s true that a few good games may sway the home crowd, the heckling on the road will be intense and vicious. There will be banners. In passionate basketball cities like Boston, New York and Philadelphia, there very well may be obscene chants and derisiveness. If Howard’s play last year was negatively affected by sensitive issues such as the deaths of his college coach and members of his family and the trade of close friend Devin Harris, how will consistently nasty disapproval disturb him?”
Buck Harvey of The San Antonio Express News: “The Spurs should have drafted him in 2003. The only issue would have been how the Spurs would have eventually fit him into their payroll, but they would have found a way. He’s too good. They would be better now — and maybe favorites — if they had him. But as Howard acts less mature with every word he utters, there’s reason to wonder if he was the real loser of that draft-day decision. Had he been with the Spurs all these years, he would have won championships; he might have helped the team win another, too, in 2006. He also would have hung around with another Wake Forest alum, and he would have plugged into an attitude that believes boring news is good news. This is where Howard’s image and life would have detoured.”