Smush Parker responded to Kobe Bryant‘s derisive comments that Parker was never a NBA-quality guard, only the last pick on the playground because the Lakers were too cheap for anyone else. And did Parker ever respond. Parker called the 2005-07 Lakers the “Los Angeles Bryants” because Bean Bryant wouldn’t let Smush even talk to him off the court; ate at separate tables instead of with the team in restaurants and sat in the back of the bus by himself and his bodyguards; and never tried to get along with his teammates (remember, this was Kobe’s lean period of walking through the desert, so there wasn’t much to talk about, anyway). It got so bad that Smush said he started to freeze out Kobe. Yes, let us write that a second time. Smush Parker froze out Kobe Bryant and just started looking him off. This is a top-five bizarre-feud next to… next to … actually we can’t really think of one this pointed and so far after-the-fact to boot. It makes Deron Williams and Mark Cuban look absolutely minor league. … It’s a few days old but Rajon Rondo‘s comments in Boston Common (it’s a magazine; he wasn’t just talking to himself in the park) still jump out at his confidence. No longer can you say he’s in the shadow of his bigger teammates and no longer will he pretend like he belongs anywhere but the top five of NBA point guards. Ah, but how to define a good point guard? “I’ll give you an example: If [head coach] Doc Rivers gets thrown out, I can run the team for the rest of the game. I know what plays to call, what sets to call, or when to call time outs. It’s more than keeping track of the score,” he said. The reckless plays come and go far fewer than ever and his “wow” plays are so prevalent they’re almost the norm. Almost. That the head-scratchers are still there is why we’re even talking about Rondo right now, for their promise and frustration. He believes every team would — should — want him to run their show. “In that category I think I am the best at what I do.” … Houston only managed three offensive boards all night against New Orleans but the Rockets beat the Hornets, 95-75. Kevin Martin‘s outside J was buttery with three threes and Terrence Jones continued to make a few plays that could be top-10 worthy, including a nasty block. The book on Omer Asik in free agency was that he would be a valued rebounder and efficient scorer and he kept up his end of the deal, with 15 boards and 60-percent shooting. Monty Williams only went nine deep on his bench and kept Anthony Davis out of the game for rest. … Read on to hear about the Pacers-Wolves highlight reel of a game …
The Pacers downed the Timberwolves, 96-91, at home and that was all well and good but the important news is that Gerald Green kept doing Air Attack this offseason, by the looks of his humongous alley-oop late in the fourth quarter. Ben Hansbrough had the ball out of bounds at the corner of the arc when Green cut backdoor and ended with his head just a few inches below the rim. Jermaine Taylor had no clue Green had run up his back. Earlier, the game would have been the Pacers with 98 had Dante Cunningham not been shot out of a cannon at halfcourt, sprinted past Pacers guard Hansbrough on the fast break, and swatted his layup at the rim back from whence it came about 20 feet. Not to be outdone, Paul George wound up like he was in a prize fight to smack down Derrick Williams‘ dunk attempt on the break later in the game. … The Suns beat the Blazers, 104-93, cruising the last three quarters in the lead. Markieff Morris led all scorers with 15. … Cole Aldrich didn’t have an encouraging Summer League performance and it didn’t look good in Oklahoma City’s 97-81 loss to Utah on Friday. Aldrich had zero lateral quickness keeping Al Jefferson and Enes Kanter from dunking on him. He did finish with 11 points and 10 boards, but he just looks lost and/or bullied on post defense. … The Nuggets beat the Spurs 97-91 in a game that started with a delay of game warning to the Nugs. Watch for that ruling later this year. Teams now have 90 seconds to get to the tip once the house lights come up. Remember when Bron was having all that pregame fun in Cleveland with his teammates? Yes this is a reaction to that. … DeMar DeRozan had 14 points and Jonas Valanciunas had 11 points and eight boards in Toronto’s 82-75 win over Detroit. … Dion Waiters must have been focused up to Byron Scott’s level of satisfaction in the Cavs’ 86-83 win over Chicago. He had 18 points to lead Cleveland. … Only a couple days after he shot off on Twitter in some real talk to Deron Williams, DeShawn Stevenson tweeted an apology to the Nets guard. See, when you call someone out about comments about dudes quitting and not caring about losses, you’re probably going to hear about it. Apparently D-Will and DeShawn got to talking and Williams must have said, it wasn’t if you buddy. D-Steve: “I Talk 2 My X Teammate 2Day And He Told Me That He Wasn’t Talking About Me And They Mis-Print What He Said……” / “So I’m A Real Dude And Want 2 Say Sorry 2 Dwill For Spazzing And A Real Dude Would Say Sorry! So Sorry Dwill / “Takes Alot 4 A Man 2 Call A Man And Tell Me The Truth!! I Respect That!!” … If you loved NBA 2K13 you’re not alone. 2K Sports announced the game has sold 49 percent more copies than its last best-seller, 2K11, according to its in-house estimates. Apparently having a video-game team in reality (the Lakers) hasn’t hurt sales of the virtual reality kind. … We’re out like Gerald Green.
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