82 games? A secret schedule? David Stern having a conscience? No way. But rumors continue to mount that all of this might be true (even the stuff about our man Stern). Obviously, Stern has been throwing threats around for the last few weeks. He made good on the first one – to cancel the first two weeks of the season – but now it’s possible the season might be in jeopardy – or at least all the games before Christmas – if nothing is improved by next week. ESPN.com reports that there’s a belief amongst the players that the owners may start turning on each other if the players hold firm. Of course, we’ve heard that one before. What if neither side budges? A bunch of stubborn millionaires/billionaires dig themselves even further into the sand? Let’s not talk about it. Let’s keep it positive: as ESPN writes, there are some rumblings that a secret schedule is being put together, starting Dec. 1 and still running all 82 games. Besides that, league schedule-maker Matt Winick has put together a number of options stemming from 50 to 74 games. So there’s some hope … Kenny Smith, in the process of putting together a charity game that will benefit military members, had some interesting things to say about how he was paid by NBA teams back in the day. At one point, the former Rocket said the team often negotiated his salary – Smith would want $2.1 million, the team willing to give him $1.7 – so they would base it off incentives, an agreement to do well by each other. So of course, he says the lockout should do the same thing. The fighting over the BRI? Stupid… just give the players a number – say 49 percent – and if it goes over, they get 50-53 percent. It seems easy to figure out – especially once the Jet started comparing the lockout to cherry pie – but it never seems to work out that way … Brandon Jennings has been making noise all summer with his game. But how much better has he really gotten? We know he can kill it on the playground. But how good will he be this year? We brought you a Who’s Better yesterday, pitting Jrue Holiday up against Jennings. It might be closer than you think. Still, Jennings is working out nonstop, and said he will definitely shoot over 40 percent this year. That’s a start … Yesterday, we introduced you to a cat who could be the next Ricky Rubio. His name is Devon Van Oostrum. What do you think? … As we get closer to college basketball, you have to think it will affect by the lockout. Expect more team personnel to be at games scouting the top prospects. How will that affect next year’s crop of rookies, which is shaping up to be one of the best of the last 10-15 years? Will some like Jared Sullinger benefit or look worse? Apparently, he’s dropped 20 pounds (now at 265) and sliced his body fat from 16.7 to 12.1. What about some of the freshmen who have question marks? Andre Drummond? … And it was reported recently that Sebastian Telfair was going to sign with the Jiangsu Dragons, but his agent says there is nothing to report on at this time … We’re out like Sullinger’s baby fat.
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