Olympic NBA Stars Capture The Moment; David Stern Smacks Down Dwight Howard’s Agent

Wherever your turn tonight (or for the next two weeks) you’re going to get hit in the face with Olympic coverage. We challenge you to find a nicer photo than this. Serge Ibaka looks like he just stepped off the set of Shaft. Thank everything for athletes and their Instagramming and Twittering. That photo was courtesy Kevin Durant‘s account, but of course we’ve seen how Team USA rides from Kevin Love‘s account. Don’t forget Deron Williams, too, who basically gave a photo essay of all the cool Olympians out there tonight. This isn’t snark when we say, that’s awesome and thank you. He got Russell Westbrook and Tony Parker (no goggles here) in one shot and new T-Wolf Andrei Kirilenko in another. Olympians, they’re just like us. … The Opening Ceremonies of the Olympics had LeBron James doing a double take with a Kobe clone. (Is this part of the KobeSystem they never told us about?) The clone is high jumper Erik Kynard and let’s just say that guy has more pure hops than Kobe ever did after jumping higher than 7-7. Just sayin. … Meanwhile, in the Olympic village. … If you’re much of a fan of your team, you’ve taken a big red pen to every interesting game on your schedule today. Like the rest of us, you’ve sized up the games you need tickets to and which you’ll catch on League Pass. Did your picks match up with ours for every team this year? Of course we’re bringing you our take on the 10 most anticipated games of the season, too. Tell your significant other that you’re staying home those nights and catching those tilts. We can’t wait to get this started but until then, we’ll be watching the London hoops action. … There’s a wrinkle that’s come up just days before a vote on a new arena in Seattle is likely to take place. It’s about the professional basketball team that’s still in town, the WNBA’s Seattle Storm — whose center Lauren Jackson was the flag bearer for the Aussies in London. See, the city pays the team $300,000 each year as a subsidy, but like every city these days, Seattle’s looking to tidy up its expenses side of the ledger. They want investor Chris Hansen’s group to take on that payment. We’ll see if that becomes a sticking point in the next weeks. …David Stern prefaced his statements to USA Today here by letting it be known that he is happy with how the Dwightmare is going in Orlando. He sees no problem with the story dragging on because it keeps people like us writing about it, literally every day since he said “Nevermind, I want back out” about a month ago. Stern does, however, take major umbrage with the manner in which it’s all coming out. He’s looking at you, Dan Fegan. “It’s very unique, especially if it’s driven by a quote source that happens to be Dwight’s agent,” Stern said. “‘A source in the meeting. Oh, OK, who might that be?” Someone trying to get public opinion to sway against the Magic, that’s who. … There’s still guys getting signed out there. Today John Lucas III and Aaron Gray were re-signed and signed by the Raptors. … Ronny Turiaf is a Clipper. Official signings of deal we’ve long expected included Nazr Mohammed in Chicago and Robin Lopez and Hakim Warrick from Phoenix to New Orleans, officially. We hope they look happier in their press conference there than Gordon/Kaman/Aminu did last year in their mugshot. … Austin Rivers signed last week with the Hornets but today he got bone spurs in his ankle cleaned out. Reports had him able to make training camp still. … Sad news from Santa Maria, California, tonight, where former Indiana player Neil Reed died at only 36 from cardiac arrest. He was a big recruit out of high school who you don’t remember at all for basketball. Bobby Knight choked him at the 1997 practice that ultimately helped get him fired once video surfaced a few months later. … The most worried-about knee in the American north will be headed back to the U.S. soon, reports say about Ricky Rubio. The Spanish rook wizard is having a checkup in Vail to see if he’s on pace. … We’re out like Dwight’s sources.

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