The Bulls, with a five game lead over the Pacers, are the class of the Central Division, and tonight they're challenging their mettle against the red-hot Spurs. Here's a look at what's going on with some of the teams trying to chase down Chicago:
- The contract of Cavs big man Samardo Samuels is not guaranteed past this season, and coach Byron Scott says he'll have to step up his effort and energy to remain with the team, tweet Tom Reed and Mary Schmitt Boyer of the Cleveland Plain Dealer. Samuels, who played 11 minutes last night against Boston but has otherwise fallen out of the Cavs rotation, seems at a loss, telling the Plain Dealer, "It's hard to determine where I'm at and what I need to do to get on the court. I don't know what I did to get off (the court)."
- Bucks swingman Stephen Jackson, a subject of trade rumors, has indicated before that he has a rocky relationship with coach Scott Skiles, but a frustrated Skiles is unwilling to go back and forth with him on the issue, tweets Sean Deveney of The Sporting News.
- Deveney says Australian Andrew Bogut may not be healthy in time for the Olympics, but Adam Zagoria of SNY writes that Kyrie Irving, who was born in Melbourne before moving to the U.S. at age 2, is considering suiting up for Australia instead.
- Stephen Brotherston of HoopsWorld takes a look at Pistons guard Rodney Stuckey, whom he calls the team's best trade asset.