Lakers coach Mike D'Antoni had some harsh words for Pau Gasol in response to a question about the thought process that led him to keep Gasol on the bench in the fourth quarter of the team's loss to the Grizzlies tonight. "I was thinking I'd like to win this game, that's what I was thinking," D'Antoni said, as Kevin Ding of the Orange County Register tweets. The coach also questioned Gasol's conditioning, Ding also tweets, and this will seemingly reignite the off-and-on trade speculation that's surrounded Gasol for the past several months. While we wait to hear more about that, here's the rest of the buzz from a 12-game night in the Association:
- Chauncey Billups is targeting the first week of December to return from his torn Achilles' tendon, reports Ken Berger of CBSSports.com.
- Wolves coach Rick Adelman explained the team's admiration of Nicolas Batum that led them to sign him to an offer sheet that was eventually matched by the Blazers, as Jerry Zgoda of the Star Tribune documents. "I felt he could do what he's doing, that with the group we had — especially with Kevin (Love) and Pek (Nikola Pekovic) and Ricky (Rubio) — it'd be a good fit," Adelman said. "But it didn't work out. They had control over it, and they got him and we're happy we got Andrei (Kirilenko)."
- Ira Winderman of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel can see the Heat pursuing a center at some point later this season.
- Sam Amico of Fox Sports Ohio preaches patience on Dion Waiters, and doesn't think it would be worthwhile for the Cavs to trade Anderson Varejao.
- College seniors are no longer a commodity in the NBA draft, but several of this year's crop of upperclassmen are making a push to reverse that trend, notes Chad Ford of ESPN.com (Insider only).
- Croatian small forward Dario Saric is 16th on the DraftExpress.com list of the top 2013 draft prospects, but his new deal overseas doesn't include an NBA out until 2014, reports Toma Dragičević of Jutarnji.hr (translation via Sportando's Emiliano Carchia).