Good morning. Let's basketball.
DRAY DAY: Phenomenal Paul Flannery piece on how Draymond Green surprised even himself by rewriting the rules of NBA stardom. Of course Green gives a good quote in this piece, but the words from Steve Kerr are extraordinary in their effusiveness. So much to like about Draymond.
BACK TO THE GREAT LAKES: Tobias Harris has been traded to the Pistons for Brandon Jennings and Ersan Ilyasova. That's right: Jennings is reunited with Scott Skiles. Harris is the most interesting piece here. How will Stan Van Gundy get him looks? The future starting five of the Pistons -- Reggie Jackson, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Stanley Johnson, Harris and Andre Drummond -- looks deadly on paper.
NOT DONE: The Magic have a deal in place to swap Channing Frye for Lance Stephenson and C.J. Wilcox, too, but apparently L.A. is seeing if they can do better. I like C.J. Wilcox, and reports suggest there's a pick involved. Orlando would waive Lance immediately. Doc gonna Doc ...
LEE-K OUT: Courtney Lee got shipped to Charlotte in a three-team deal that gets Chris Andersen off of Miami's cap and lands P.J. Hairston in Memphis. It's not a cap dump by the Grizzlies, despite being a bit over the tax line: Memphis is actually taking back a little more salary than they expunged. But they also get four second-round picks in the deal. So, essentially they paid in talent and a chance to avoid tax for the privilege of four more seconds. Which might be a good idea, all told.
KIWIS IN BROOKLYN: It looks like Sean Marks, current Spurs assistant, first New Zealander in the NBA and longtime "oh that guy," is in line to take the Nets' GM job. These Spurs system GMs tend to hire coaches from the Popovich family, so you wonder if current Spurs assistants Ettore Messina (Russian ties!), Becky Hammon (also Russian ties and historic) or Ime Udoka (good dude) are in line for shots.
SPEAKING OF WHICH ... Mikhail Prokhorov published an open letter to Nets fans in The Vertical. This is an interesting development considering Prokhorov claimed to not even own a computer.
STILL RIDING: Awesome Chris Ballard profile on Dirk Nowitzki.
REVIEWING THE DUNK CONTEST WITH THE COMBATANTS: Zach LaVine and Aaron Gordon reflect on the dunk contest the next day.
HMMMMMM: Researchers at Wake Forest say they have created a 3D printer that can produce human bones, organs and tissues. ACLs, too, perhaps?
OF COURSE HE DID: Drake ruined one dope sports photo.
INTERESTING: Basketball culture in Guatemala.
SPHERE OF INFLUENCE: Kavitha Davidson writes that pro sports teams, not content to only win public funding for their stadiums and arenas, are now co-opted much of the development immediately around said stadiums and arenas.
Happy Trade Deadline Eve. See you next time.
* * *
Slam Dunk Contest: Aaron Gordon is the best runner-up ever