Good morning. Let’s basketball.
PREVIEW STROLL: Professor Flannery and I aren’t sure the Hornets can improve much from their epic 48-win campaign of a year ago. We do, however, think the Spurs will be awesome, even if they are no match for the Elephants In The Room. We have a Charlotte preview from At The Hive and a San Antonio preview from Pounding The Rock, as well. PLUS! Limited Upside tours the changed Atlanta Hawks.
POP QUIZ: Can you recall what teams all these NBA players joined? I scored 9/10. I had Kris Humphries to the Juneau FrostDonkeys, whoops.
GLORY BE TO JENNINGS: Brandon Jennings cooked a rookie, got in his dome, and got Madison Square Garden chanting his name. In the preseason. Seven years too late!
ECCENTRICITIES, I’VE GOT A FEW: Shea Serrano breaks down the best free throw routines and lands on (spoiler alert) Rip Hamilton. I’m going to go with Reggie Miller with the arm extension, dribble dribble dribble, swish.
REMINDER: Game 2 of the WNBA Finals tips at 8 p.m. ET on ESPN2.
L.A. ALREADY HAS A RUSSELL: Don’t look now but D’Angelo Russell has been lighting the preseason on fire. SOMEONE GIVE HIM A HIGH-FIVE, sheesh.
BUCKETS, MD: Kevin O’Connor on the importance of the NBA’s resident shot doctors.
ZERO CHILL: DeMarcus Cousins doesn’t even know who Paul McCartney is.
IF THE WOKE FITS: Wisconsin’s Nigel Hayes on how he became woke, his friendship with Bronson Koenig, and his new tattoos.
LOCKER ROOM TALK: Marvin Williams wants to know what kind of locker rooms Donald Trump has been hanging around. (I posit that you DON’T actually want to know.) Over at Vox.com, Chris Kluwe dives deeper into the perspective of the pro athlete on ribald conversation.
AWW NUTS: The Kings signed Blue Diamond Growers as their jersey sponsor.
AND FINALLY: Sam Amick is among the best NBA reporters, and he shows why with his deep dive into the mind of Kings franchisee Vivek Ranadive. Here’s the column, here’s Part I of the Q&A, here’s Part II of the Q&A. There’s enough grain for a dozen mills here. Bless you, Sam.
Happy Tuesday. TWO WEEKS UNTIL THE REGULAR SEASON BEGINS. See you next time.