John L.

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Charles Barkley Explains Why He Dislikes the Warriors' Style of Basketball

Charles Barkley has long criticized the Golden State Warriors' style of play, and he didn't hold back Thursday before the Cleveland Cavaliers tipped off against the Los Angeles Clippers in the first half of a doubleheader on TNT.<p>"Maybe I'm old school, but I'm never going to like that little girly …

Basketball

The Biggest Early-Season Concern Facing Each NBA Team

More NBA basketball has been played than you think.<p>Believe it or not, the 2016-17 campaign is around one-quarter of the way gone. While that means we get to start accepting surprise performances as lasting fact, it also means every team's most glaring concern needs to be taken seriously.<p>These …

NBA

LeBron James Named Sports Illustrated's 2016 Sportsperson of the Year

LeBron James was named the 2016 Sportsperson of the Year by <i>Sports Illustrated</i> after leading the Cleveland Cavaliers to their first NBA championship in June.<p>The editors of <i>Sports Illustrated</i> made the announcement Wednesday, stating:<p>He, of course, was not the only athlete to help end a famous title …

Lebron James

For 10 NBA Superstars, 10 Season-Defining Narratives Taking Shape

Guys such as Wilson Chandler, Tim Frazier, George Hill, Otto Porter and Julius Randle have made far bigger impressions on their teams than most people expected.<p>Kudos to them. Next from off the grid to make differences could be Justin Anderson, JaMychal Green, Gary Harris, Terrence Jones and Josh …

Basketball

The NBA Is Entering A New Golden Age Of Star Power

The 1980s and early ’90s are referred to as the NBA’s “Golden Age,” with stars like Magic Johnson, Larry Bird and the G.O.A.T. himself, Michael …

Sports

According To One Study, The Knicks Have The Most Die-Hard Fans In The NBA

Every team likes to tell its fans that they’re “the best in the world,” but it’s just as meaningless as the sign on your local greasy spoon that says, “World Famous Chicken Parm,” or something like that. But when you think about what one wants out of a fanbase, one thing stands above all else — …

NBA

Don't Lump Russell Westbrook in with the Other Stat-Stuffers

OKLAHOMA CITY—With seven seconds remaining in the first half Monday night against the New York Knicks, Russell Westbrook whipped a pass to Joffrey Lauvergne under the basket. Kristaps Porzingis reached out at the last second to deflect the pass, resulting in a Thunder turnover. Time expired and …

Russell Westbrook

Stephen Curry on Warriors future: 'It's hard to see myself anywhere else'

Warriors star Stephen Curry will put Golden State fans' minds at ease with his recent comments to the <i>Wall Street Journal</i>.<p>When asked for his thoughts …

Shaquille O'Neal believes his dominance led to the evolution of big men

Shaq says he's the most dominant big man in history, followed by Wilt<p>When Shaquille O'Neal was inducted into the Hall of Fame in September, Kobe Bryant offered high praise while congratulating his former Lakers teammate. Bryant called O'Neal "the most dominant big of all time," which is what Shaq …

Shaquille O'Neal

Kawhi Leonard is stepping up as a leader

In today’s Sunday Shootaround at SB Nation, Paul Flannery’s latest piece talks about Leonard’s never-ending work ethic and the subtle leadership …

Basketball

The NBA playoff picture is already snapping into place

If recent history is any indication, we need just one month to set up the NBA’s playoff races.<p>Casual basketball fans often claim that there’s little reason to watch the NBA before Christmas, or even before the NFL season ends. This is one call in a chorus of complaints that the NBA season is simply …

NBA

Best and Worst Contracts in the NBA So Far in 2016-17

As the NBA adjusts to its new salary-cap climate, it's only right that we update the best and worst contracts accordingly.<p>Players on rookie-scale deals will not be a part of this conversation, since their earning potential is heavily capped. Likewise, superstars on max-level agreements will not be …

Portland Trail Blazers

2016-17 NBA Superstar Rankings: Top 5 Players at Every Position So Far

Is 2016-17 the NBA's year of the youngster?<p>Sure, veterans such as LeBron James, Kevin Durant, James Harden and Russell Westbrook are dominating. But in addition to those established superstars, each of the five positions features at least one up-and-comer who has been even better than expected in …

NBA

30 Teams In 30 Days: Why The San Antonio Spurs Will Own 2017

The San Antonio Spurs have raised the bar in how to build a winning team. Head coach Gregg Popovich and GM R.C. Buford have prioritized tough defense and depth ahead of traditional star power and have built legends in the process.<p>This approach has earned the Spurs five NBA championships and turned …

NBA

Steve Kerr's reaction to Warriors blowout over Lakers is the reason he's a great coach

Not only do the Warriors have all this talent, but their coach is one of the best<p>Golden State beat the pants off the Lakers for a second-straight game, 109-85 Friday night at Staples Center. The Warriors have now won 10 in a row, and have the best record in the league for the first time this season …

Steve Kerr

Injuries Are Derailing the Los Angeles Lakers' Hot Start

LOS ANGELES — The Los Angeles Lakers stunned the Golden State Warriors in early November with a 117-97 victory.<p>The Warriors exacted revenge during a pair of games sandwiching the Thanksgiving holiday, demolishing the Lakers 149-106 on Wednesday in Oakland before a 109-85 win on Friday at Staples …

Basketball

No Off Years: The 10 Most Consistent Sports Superstars Right Now

Always showing up is hard, so repeatedly dominating on a yearly basis separates great sports players from top-tier superstars.<p>Some athletes can't replicate the perfect formulas they found one year. Others, needing more help from teammates and coaches, unravel under imperfect circumstances. Injuries …

Sports

Strangest Stats from the Young 2016-17 NBA Season

Some NBA statistics make sense.<p>Are we really surprised the Golden State Warriors are dominating on offense, or that LeBron James is throwing up more big numbers? Is it outlandish that Hassan Whiteside is leading the league in rebounds per game, or that Russell Westbrook is the scoring leader?<p>Please …

NBA

Why Portland is feeling a new kind of pressure

<i>The Vertical Front-Office Insider Bobby Marks, a 20-year executive with the Nets, examines how teams evaluate their rosters during the season.</i><p>In some …

Sports

How the San Antonio Spurs Avoided the Post-Superstar Decline

SAN ANTONIO—Nearly a month into his first season in 20 years without Tim Duncan, Gregg Popovich still fields the same question whenever a team his San Antonio Spurs face for the first time shows up on the schedule.<p>“What’s it like walking into your locker room and not seeing Timmy?”<p>It happened again …

NBA

Michael Jordan, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar & More Receive Presidential Medal of Freedom

The sports world was well-represented at the White House on Tuesday, as President Barack Obama presented Michael Jordan, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Vin Scully with the Presidential Medal of Freedom.<p>In his final Medal of Freedom ceremony as president, Obama highlighted the accomplishments and …

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

Draymond Green Says Getting Kevin Durant Erased The Sting Of The Warriors Blowing A 3-1 Lead

Draymond Green is one of the most outspoken players in the NBA, so when he gets the chance to express himself at length, rather than in a rapid-fire press conference setting, he’s always worth a listen. He sat down for Adrian Wojnarowski’s podcast, and among the topics covered was if Green still …

Kevin Durant

The Top 10 NBA Players with the Most Trade Value Right Now

Nothing prepares us for a sixth helping of Thanksgiving turkey and gravy like some hypothetical NBA trade talk—a riff on players with the most chopping-block appeal right now, to be more specific.<p>These names are not necessarily in the rumor mill. Nor do they absolutely, positively need to be moved …

NBA

Dennis Rodman Charged with Hit-and-Run: Latest Details and Comments

Prosecutors in Orange County, California, charged NBA Hall of Famer Dennis Rodman with a hit-and-run for his involvement in a July auto accident in Santa Ana, California.<p>"Rodman is accused of driving head-on toward a sedan, causing the driver of the sedan to swerve and crash into a dividing wall to …

Baby Lakers Showing the Franchise There's More Than 1 Way to Build a Team

LOS ANGELES — The Los Angeles Lakers' recipe for rebuilding was never supposed to include lemons.<p>The lordly Lakers' plan was to draw majestic free-agent talent to work alongside (or replace) Kobe Bryant, ensuring the parade of dominant individual Lakers superstars would just march on with new …

NBA

Russell Westbrook, OKC Thunder Desperately Need Help. Is Rudy Gay the Answer?

OKLAHOMA CITY—Russell Westbrook rose from his seat and prepared to face the media after the Oklahoma City Thunder’s 115-110 overtime loss to the injury-depleted Indiana Pacers. The look on his face was equal parts exasperation and frustration, with perhaps a hint of exhaustion.<p>When Westbrook wants …

Basketball

Life After the NBA Doesn't Have to Be an Identity Crisis for Retired Players

The summer of 2015 was a summer of renaissance for Luke Ridnour.<p>Ordinarily, the veteran point guard’s offseason days would revolve around intense workouts designed to get ready for the next season. Early-morning sessions in the weight room; getting up shots in the afternoon; physical therapy …

NBA

Buyer's Remorse? Five New Additions Off To Regrettable Starts

Thanksgiving week is upon us, which means the first month of the 2016-17 NBA season is nearly in the books. Given that 10 teams are entering Monday’s …

NBA

Sunday Shootaround: What do we want from the Warriors?

What do we want from the Warriors?<p>BOSTON -- For several minutes on Friday night, the Golden State Warriors attained basketball nirvana. It wasn’t just the deluge of points, or how they scored them. We’ve become accustomed to the barrage of 3-pointers, dunks, and layups. It certainly wasn’t how they …

Steve Kerr

The NBA is undergoing a positional revolution that bodes well for the future of the league

Ann Heisenfelt/AP<p>The most intriguing position in the NBA is one that many felt was going out of vogue for the past decade.<p>In a league with a bevy of talented point guards and an increased emphasis on floor-spacing, perhaps the most exciting development has been a cast of talented young big men who …

Revolution