The Sixers have lost 16 of their last 22 games to fall into ninth place in the Eastern Conference, but Andrew Bynum provided a glimmer of hope Monday, telling reporters, including John Mitchell of the Philadelphia Inquirer, that he's feeling minimal pain in his knees and hopes to make his season debut around the All-Star break. While the Sixers continue to wait for their prize summer acquisition, here's the latest on their Atlantic Division rivals.
- Celtics basketball president Danny Ainge believes the five weeks or so between now and the trade deadline will be crucial, but as Gary Washburn of the Boston Globe details, Ainge is satisfied with what he's seeing from his squad, which has won five in a row. "Right now we don’t have a real need and we have players like Jason Collins and Leandro Barbosa who we really like and are hardly playing, so I don’t really see a need to bring someone else in, at least at this moment," Ainge said. "We’re happy with our roster and we’re looking for improvement but we feel like we have plenty of bodies and Chris Wilcox should be back in not too long. I don’t think there’s any need to bring in someone right now to sit on the end of our bench."
- Joe Johnson doesn't put too much stock in the interim tag on coach P.J. Carlesimo's title and regards him as the full-fledged boss of the Nets, as he tells Stefan Bondy of the New York Daily News.
- Gerald Green was squeezed out of the Nets' plans this season when they used their taxpayer's midlevel exception on Mirza Teletovic instead, Bondy notes, but Green nonetheless has affection for recently fired coach Avery Johnson, who helped him resurrect his career.
- Mike Woodson has reached J.R. Smith in ways other coaches haven't, Newsday's Al Iannazzone examines.