Eastern Notes: Larkin, Gibson, Wizards

Nets point guard Shane Larkin said that he needed to get away from the Knicks and the triangle offense in order to grow as a player, Brian Lewis of The New York Post writes. “I’m in a pick-and-roll system my third year,’’ said Larkin. “My first year [in Dallas] I was in a pick-and-roll system, but I was coming off a broken ankle, so I missed time with that, didn’t get a preseason, so I was just kind of learning on the fly. Last year wasn’t the best system for me, that year went however it went. And this year I feel like I’m growing every single game and being more comfortable out there and just playing my game. I feel like it’s a good fit.’’ The 23-year-old is averaging 7.0 points, 2.2 rebounds and 3.7 assists in 18.9 minutes of action per game this season for Brooklyn.

Here’s more from the East:

  • Power forward Taj Gibson is supportive of rookie Bobby Portis, whose play in the wake of Joakim Noah‘s injury has many calling for an increased role for the young player, and potentially making Gibson a trade candidate for the Bulls, Vincent Goodwill of CSNChicago.com writes. When asked if the emergence of Portis has given conflicting feelings, Gibson responded, “What do you mean mixed feelings? It’s never mixed feelings. At the end of the day I care about my teammates. I don’t worry about all that. If he plays well it’s good for us, it’s good for the team. I want him to succeed. At the end of the day, we’re millionaires. We play a game.”
  • Paul Pierce believes that the Wizards, his former team, will be a dangerous team once they get healthy, Jorge Castillo of The Washington Post writes. “Right now I think they’ve been dealing with a lot of injuries. I keep up with them when I’m not playing. I’m still good friends with a lot of guys on the team. We chat on the text,” Pierce said. “I just think they’re dealing with a lot of injuries and kind of got off to a slow start. And I think once they get healthy, you’re going to have to watch out for them. They got a lot of depth when they’re healthy. A guy like Alan Anderson can definitely be a positive for them as far as their wing depth. Obviously, they’re missing a lot of their big men so I think once they get healthy, if they get healthy at the right time, they can make a real good run in the East.
  • The Heat have assigned shooting guard Josh Richardson to their D-League affiliate, the team announced. This will be Richardson’s first sojourn of the season to Sioux Falls.
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