Dallas Mavericks Rumors
In this sleepy Punjabi village, no one was surprised to see a seven-foot-tall Sikh farmer striding the narrow lanes toward the local Sikh temple on June 25. The farmer, Balbir Singh Bamrah, is a familiar presence in Ballo Ke, and something of a local curiosity. But the other worshipers at the temple, known as a gurudwara, were a bit perplexed by the prayer the guru offered for Balbir Singh’s household. He stood over the farmer, his wife and his daughter, and prayed for peace, prosperity, health — and that Balbir Singh’s son would be drafted. “They didn’t understand what the N.B.A. draft was,” said Sarabjot Kaur, Balbir Singh’s 23-year-old daughter. “They only realized later.”
Balbir Singh, 56, said his son’s success was a fitting cap to a decade of work and training. “Basketball is God’s gift,” he said in a rumbling baritone, while greeting a stream of visitors and answering calls on a cellphone dwarfed by his huge hands. “Everything that’s happened to him, all the acclaim, is from basketball,” he said.
The men at the Ballo Ke shrine offer a different explanation, one reflective of a hard edge in an otherwise rejoicing village. They say the crucial factor was the family’s link to Amarinder Singh, the former chief minister of Punjab State, who visited the village as agriculture minister in the 1980s and struck up a friendship with Balbir Singh, even inviting him and his family to his daughter’s wedding. “It is all because of his favor,” said Mukhtiar Singh, one of the men. Another, Nirmal Singh, said that without that kind of advantage, such a success story is “not just difficult, it’s impossible.”
Crawford has alluded to displeasure with the Clippers on social media, tweeting that being a free agent would be a “wish” for him in the wake of persistent trade rumors. The veteran shooting guard also listed Cleveland’s Quicken Loans Arena among his favorite NBA spots, seemingly referencing the Cavaliers because they were one of his rumored trade destinations. There is also the matter of whether the Clippers need to make Jordan more of a focal point of their offense. That possibility seemed to dazzle the center during his free-agency dalliance with the Dallas Mavericks.
John Jenkins got a little advice from Mark Cuban after the Mavericks owner signed the free-agent shooting guard last week. “He told me just to make buckets,” said Jenkins, a 2012 first-round pick of the Hawks. “That’s what I do best, and that’s what I’m going to do.”