It looks to be an eventful day for the Atlantic Division, both on and off the court. The 76ers and Knicks will visit Miami and Indiana, respectively, looking to gain ground on the division-leading Celtics, while off the court, Nets star Deron Williams is again discussing his impending free agency. We have a few more notes from the division to round up, so let's dive in….
- Executives and other sources around the league don't blame Celtics GM Danny Ainge for his inactivity when it comes to moving his Big Three, says Steve Bulpett of the Boston Herald. Said one source: "Look, I’ve had my dealings with [Ainge], and he could be pain in the butt. But if I was him, I wouldn’t have taken what we were trying to give. Sometimes the hardest thing to do is nothing, even when it’s the right thing. We’re programmed to act, but sometimes that can be the dumbest thing you can do." Ainge's decision to stand pat is paying off now — the Celtics are 15-5 since the All-Star break, including an ongoing five-game winning streak.
- The Lakers have title aspirations and the Knicks are battling to hold on to a playoff spot, but the two teams have more in common than you'd think, argues John Hollinger of ESPN.com (Insider link). According to Hollinger, health is the main difference between the two teams, as Kobe Bryant, Pau Gasol, and Andrew Bynum have yet to miss a single game due to injury while the Knicks have been hit hard by the injury big.
- Even now that Kentucky has won a National Championship, don't expect to see John Calipari jump at a chance to coach the Knicks or any other team, writes Adam Zagoria of SNY.tv.
- Calipari's star player, Anthony Davis, is a lock to go first overall in this June's draft, prompting Reid Cherner of USA Today to ask which of the league's eight worst teams would benefit most from drafting the Kentucky big man. The Nets and Raptors are among the choices, and Raps coach Dwane Casey is among Davis' fans, according to Eric Koreen of the National Post.