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Posted: Monday December 15, 2008 4:38PM; Updated: Monday December 15, 2008 4:55PM
Paul Forrester Paul Forrester >
INSIDE THE NBA

Odom takes one for the team (cont.)

Scout's take

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Andris Biedrins has been a force around the basket for the Warriors.
AP
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Andris Biedrins (15.1 points, 12.2 rebounds) has been a bright spot for the Warriors, who are languishing at 7-17. An NBA scout assessed the 22-year-old's game.

"He's always around the paint and he's always active, so instead of hanging on people's backs, he tries to get around them and get rebounds and tip balls out. He 'out-athletes' a lot of guys at his position and outhustles them, too. Biedrins is a pretty bright player in that he has figured out how he fits into the Warriors' style and how his niche has evolved. Offensively, that means most of his scores are from running the floor and getting second shots. That helps him not get frustrated when he doesn't get touches. He creates his own touches."

They said it

• "That was just brilliant, brilliant coaching down the stretch. That is exactly the play we drew up, and we told him to shoot it off the glass if he could get the angle on it. That's exactly what we wanted, so I have to give myself all the credit."
-- Stan Van Gundy takes a bow, with tongue in cheek, after Hedo Turkoglu beat the Blazers in Portland with a fadeaway three-pointer with 0.3 seconds left.

• He was trying to draw plays, and it was like a little Etch a Sketch. Like a kid just messing around. ... He just gave the clipboard to the assistant coaches sometimes."
-- Denver's Anthony Carter, to the Rocky Mountain News, describes McHale's style when Carter was coached by McHale in Minnesota in 2005.

• "Practice, it was kind of funny. [McHale] didn't warm us up and just let us get to playing five-on-five. He'd just sit on the sideline ... and the other coaches would be coaching."
-- Carter, with more fond memories of McHale's first stint as coach.

• "You consider that like a trade? That was like a giveaway. A trade? Wow! You got to get equal value for value or something, don't you?"
-- Terry Porter considers the Suns' trade for Jason Richardson in light of the Lakers' deal last season for Pau Gasol.

Required reading

Denver Post: Solid interview with Chauncey Billups about his trade to the Nuggets, his feelings toward the Pistons, his Hall of Fame chances and a lot more.

New York Post: Mike D'Antoni finally lets loose on Suns management and reveals his anger over its lack of appreciation for what he and the team had accomplished.

The Oregonian: Fascinating mea culpa of sorts by Blazers beat writer Jason Quick, who caused a stir with his critique of Greg Oden on a Portland radio station.

Los Angeles Times: Mike Bresnahan digs into how valuable reserve Trevor Ariza has changed the Lakers' team dynamic and how Ariza has changed, too.

3 points

1. We understand Steve Nash is upset with the Suns' new direction and the recent trade of buddies Boris Diaw and Raja Bell, but Nash's public mourning has moved into full-blown whining now. "I feel like I'm on a different team because everything's changed so much around here," Nash told the Arizona Republic. Funny, we don't recall the two-time MVP's bemoaning the change he made in leaving good friend Dirk Nowitzki in Dallas to sign a free-agent deal in Phoenix four years ago. More remarkable than GM Steve Kerr's makeover is the fact that the Suns remained relatively stable through the D'Antoni years despite not winning a title. Nash should know as much as anyone about the business side of the NBA, and we all know there's nothing personal in business.

2. It's puzzling how the Bobcats could deal Richardson, a reliable and versatile scorer in his prime, and not get back a more rugged big man than Boris Diaw. The 6-foot-8 forward is hardly a boost to one of the league's worst rebounding teams. Nor is it likely that Raja Bell (also acquired from the Suns) will thrive in Larry Brown's deliberate offense after spending the first month of the season chafing under Porter's slower scheme in Phoenix.

3. Oh, to be a Wizards fan now. With the team off to a 4-17 start, with Gilbert Arenas at least a month away from taking the court after recovering from yet another knee surgery, with starting center Brendan Haywood out possibly for the year and with an interim coach now calling the plays, the season likely will be over before the team becomes whole, or close to it. That doesn't leave much to get excited about for another, oh, 155 days, when the 2009 draft lottery is held.

 
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