Atlantic Links: Noel, Celtics, Vasquez

76ers prospect Nerlens Noel hasn’t let his knee rehab prevent him from working on other parts of his game, as Dei Lynam of CSN Philly reports that head coach Brett Brown has been tutoring the young big man on defensive principles in addition to working with him on his shooting form. As per Brown:

“I am thrilled [with] what he has done with his shot…We said from the very beginning that this is an opportunity and one that I hope he never has again…There is far more fluid to his shot and I think the carryover from this year will be significant if we can get it right for his future.”

Here are a few more minor notes to pass along out of the Atlantic Division:

  • In his latest Celtics mailbag, Chris Forsberg of ESPN Boston answers questions about Jordan Crawford‘s emergence, what happens to the rotation once Rajon Rondo is cleared to play, and which players have improved their trade value since the start of the season.
  • According to Gary Washburn of the Boston Globe, Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge is taking a cautious approach with the team’s Atlantic Division-leading 10-14 start to the season (Subscribers only).
  • Eric Koreen of the National Post writes about how Greivis Vasquez‘s affinity for playing for playing pick-and-roll basketball on a Raptors team that welcomes plenty of those opportunities will be an important development as the team looks to move on from Kyle Lowry.
  • Chris Sheridan of Sheridan Hoops explores the Knicks and Nets’ proposed deals with Toronto for Lowry and discusses whether or not they make sense.

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