September 17, 2021 | 2:45 pm EDT Update
What’s the message the veterans are giving you about the last two years? Rick Carlisle: They were disappointed with how things have gone. We’ve got to work at developing a style of play so we can maximize what we have here. Exactly what that means as far as number of wins or the playoffs, I don’t know. I’m reluctant to get into that kind of stuff, because sometimes you can set goals that are too low.
How have you evolved as a coach since you were here before? Rick Carlisle: Going from Detroit to here, they were different types of teams, and going to Dallas—the Dallas team was way different than any team I had coached before. It was much more of an outside-shooting team … so it was an amazing experience and education how to work with that kind of group. And then the game has changed an awful lot in the last 13 years, particularly in the last five. Because of the pace, the skill level, the 3-point shot, everything. In two years there, we set offensive records on points per possessions, and then this last year Brooklyn beat both. These records are going to keep falling because of the skill level.
How has the talent level progressed in the NBA? Rick Carlisle: The game has evolved to where the skill of shooting is so decisively important. If you can’t shoot, it’s very hard to be a high-level player in today’s game. The next phase of NBA basketball is going to be the centers shooting 3’s and driving the ball and making plays. Guys like [Kristaps] Porzingis are already doing it. Guys like Anthony Davis are already doing it. We’ve got [Domantas] Sabonis, who is a playmaking big, who’s working on his long-range shooting. That opens up so many possibilities for any player in this league.
The Cleveland Cavaliers have signed guard Kevin Pangos, Cavaliers General Manager Koby Altman announced today.
Mirjam Swanson: Steve Ballmer says that of the $100 million community fund that’s part of the Clippers’ arena project, $80 million will go to affordable housing, with “a good $75 million going to a nonprofit loan fund that will help buy and preserve and develop affordable housing in the area.”
Portland Trail Blazers guard, and hip hop artist, Damian Lillard, who performs as Dame D.O.L.L.A. released the new music video for his song “Him Duncan” on Friday. The title of this song is a play on NBA legend Tim Duncan’s name but isn’t the only reference he uses. In the video, Lillard pays homage to various celebrities both in sports and pop culture.
He shows love to the late hip-hop artist Tupac Shakur first, creating a black and white version of Shakur’s 1996 album “All Eyez on Me.” He also gave a nod to Biggie Smalls, better known as The Notorious B.I.G. Lillard recreated Smalls’ iconic “King of New York” image by Barron Claiborne in the video. Lillard then pays tribute to track athletes Tommie Smith and John Carlos, who wore black gloves and raised their fists on the medal stand during the 1968 Summer Olympics to protest racial inequities in the United States.
September 17, 2021 | 2:04 pm EDT Update
Mark Medina: I asked Clippers owner Steve Ballmer for his outlook on team winning an NBA title before leaving Staples Center in 2024: “I want to win a championship. I think we’ll be able to compete for a championship.”