Leave it to LeBron James to wind up in the spotlight again amidst Linsanity and the impending trade deadline. He passed up a potential game-winning shot against Utah to give the ball to Udonis Haslem instead, and Haslem missed to give the Jazz a 99-98 win. Still, as Chris Tomasson of Fox Sports Florida points out, it was the first time James has ever gone back-to-back games without committing a turnover. James will surely be with the Heat for a while, but here are a few notes on more fluid situations:
- Changes are afoot for slumping Cleveland, where Cavs coach Byron Scott is giving thought to juggling his rotation and starting lineup after his team lost its fourth straight tonight, writes Sam Amico of Fox Sports Ohio. With the trade deadline approaching, the team must soon decide what to do with Ramon Sessions and Antawn Jamison, Amico says.
- Bucks backup point guard Beno Udrih would be on board with a trade if one happens, notes Lang Greene of HoopsWorld.
- ESPN's John Hollinger, writing from the Sloan Sports Analytics Conferences, says the numbers don't add up in the Kings arena deal. He believes the league provided financial support to the cash-strapped Maloof brothers so they could make their $73MM contribution to the deal. (Insider link)
- John Schuhmann of NBA.com rounded up Celtics coach Doc Rivers' irritated pregame remarks about the trade rumors swirling around his team. In particular, he took aim at the belief the Celtics are shopping Rajon Rondo and the "ridiculous" idea that Pau Gasol may be headed to Boston. For Rondo, whose name has come up in trade talks many times before, it feels like "deja vu," notes Andrew Perna of RealGM.
- A. Sherrod Blakely of CSNNE.com looks at Celtics free agent signee Mickael Pietrus, who's finally displaying his all-around game now that he's healthy, Blakely says.
- Marc Gasol, used to fielding rumors involving his brother Pau, is surprised that Raptors point guard Jose Calderon, another Spanish Olympic teammate, is coming up in trade talk as well, reports Mike Ganter of the Toronto Sun.
- Frank Isola of the New York Daily News believes the Knicks have assembled their most talented roster in 12 years.
- Jeremy Lin isn't the only waiver pickup exceeding expectations for the Knicks, as Steve Novak has been a major beneficiary of his more famous teammate's play, as Ben Bolch examines in the Chicago Tribune.
- Former Clippers and current Suns coach Alvin Gentry admires the team the Clips have put together this year, writes Broderick Turner of the Los Angeles Times.
- Paul Coro of The Arizona Republic points out that Suns guard Shannon Brown, who'll hit the free agent market this summer, has a deceptive career high of 8.9 PPG this year. This has also been one of his worst shooting seasons.
- Maturity is the difference between the Gerald Green who flamed out with the Celtics a few years ago and the player who just returned to the league with the Nets, observes Mark Murphy of the Boston Herald.