• John Schuhmann of NBA.com goes into Team USA’s lineup data and finds that through five exhibition games, the team has been much better with a big man on the floor.
• Rob Mahoney of the Mavs-themed blog The Two Man Game (and lots of other places) is stoked that Dallas has snagged Delonte West back on a cheap one-year deal:
Everything that West does seems to be tainted by the string of colorful events to his name and his very public trials with bipolar disorder, but the man has certainly earned the benefit of the doubt by this point. If some teams really were reluctant to sign such a terrific role player based on foolish or outdated reasoning, then their lack of vision only pans out for the Mavericks’ gain; West should have been well out of Dallas’ price range given his on-court value, and yet a hesitation in the market has revived a perfect pairing between player and team. The Mavs may not have been able to give West the paycheck he deserves given their cap limitations, but they will nonetheless provide the same kind of stable culture and open system that allowed West to have a career year least season.
Agreed: West at this price — whether the veteran’s minimum or any portion of the Mavs’ $2.5 million “room” exception — is a bargain.
• What do the Wizards have in A.J. Price, newly signed away from the Pacers?
• Adrian Wojnarowski recaps Team USA’s trouncing of the Marc Gasol-less Spanish team on Tuesday night, with an emphasis on how strong play at the Olympics might help Carmelo Anthony rehabilitate his image a bit:
Now, Anthony has to be that player with the Knicks, and he’s never proven that he can do the job. He’s equipped to score points in New York, but lead and win? That’s different. He had the chance for a beautiful partnership with Jeremy Lin, and it all fell apart with the Houston Rockets’ offer sheet. Because Anthony never wanted Lin, it was probably forever doomed anyway. Lin’s indoctrination to ‘Melo would come watching him ignore the coach’s wishes and running whatever he wanted to run. Anthony and J.R. Smith resented Lin’s attention, his salary, and convinced themselves that Raymond Felton and Jason Kidd can replicate what Lin had going with the Knicks. The rest of the Knicks’ roster loved Lin, wanted him, but Anthony and Smith never had the chance to build a chemistry with him.
I’ll say this: If J.R. Smith’s opinions had even a .0001 percent role in the Knicks’ decision-making, that franchise has reached an unimaginable level of dysfunction.
• Andrew Sharp of SB Nation expects to see a jump in Anthony’s level of play next season in New York.
• D.J. Foster of ClipperBlog with an in-depth assessment of the Clippers’ offseason, with lots of detail on the Grant Hill and Ryan Hollins signings.
• Chris Herrington of the Memphis Flyer does not like the Dante Cunningham/Wayne Ellington swap for Memphis.
• Scott Schroeder of SB Nation talks with Dallas assistant Monte Mathis about stepping up to the head-coaching position on the Mavs’ summer league team. Mathis has an interesting background, and is very well-regarded around the league and in Dallas. You know him from last season as the assistant who leaps off the bench to scream out various instructions at the start of a defensive possession, signal for man or zone defenses (two fists up equals a zone) and generally look like a crazy person (in the best way possible).
• Leigh Ellis of The Basketball Jones talks to various NBA players (on video) about which Olympic events they’d like to try — and which they might be good at. You’ll be shocked to know Tony Allen steals the show in explaining why he’d like to try the shot put.
• How a small concession in the mid-1990s opened the door for the Nets to eventually move into New York City – once the exclusive territory of the Knicks. It’s nice to see the Nets benefit from some franchise relocation/ownership-level machinations, since the price of joining the NBA in the ABA-NBA merger was steep enough to force the sale of Julius Erving.
• Matt Moore, writing at NBC’s Pro Basketball Talk, muses on what the potential acquisition of Robin Lopez in a sign-and-trade with Phoenix might mean for Anthony Davis and the Hornets.