Derek Bodner: In the wake of controversy surrounding Daryl Morey’s comments the Sixers have mostly been focused on expressing the positive experiences they’ve had in China and the power of basketball as a unifying agent, avoiding any discussion about social or political considerations at play.
February 5, 2023 | 4:38 pm EST Update
Bobby Marks: There was speculation that Kyrie Irving would hold out if he was not traded. A player who withholds services for 30 days or more is viewed as not finishing his contract. If that same player is set to become a FA, he would not be entitled to sign with a new team in free agency
Following a game between the Indiana Pacers and Memphis Grizzlies on Jan. 29 in Memphis, acquaintances of Grizzlies star Ja Morant aggressively confronted members of the Pacers traveling party near the team’s bus in the loading area of FedExForum, and later someone in a slow-moving SUV — which Morant was riding in — trained a red laser on them. The two members of the traveling party who spoke to The Athletic said that they did not see who shined the laser from the SUV. They also don’t know if the laser was attached to a gun, but they believed it was. A Pacers security guard in the loading area at the time remarked: “That’s 100 percent a gun.”
“We felt we were in grave danger,” one person who was present said. The two sources who spoke to The Athletic requested anonymity because they fear retribution from those who confronted them. They said they considered filing a report with police but decided against it for the same reason. The Pacers did alert the NBA, and league spokesperson Mike Bass told The Athletic that the league probed the matter.
“While we substantiated that a postgame situation arose that was confrontational, based on interviews and other evidence gathered, we could not corroborate that any individual threatened others with a weapon,” Bass said. “Certain individuals involved in the postgame situation and a related matter during the game that night have been subsequently banned from attending games in the arena. If additional information becomes available related to the postgame situation, the league office will conduct a further review.”
Damichael Cole: Taylor Jenkins was asked about this report. “That was addressed internally. Aware of the investigation of the NBA. We were fully compliant with it. I think they came out with a statement saying nothing was corroborated or found. … That’s all I’m going to comment about.”
Neil Dalal: NBA’s Last Two Minute report for Wizards-Nets says Deni Avdija fouling Cam Thomas on the Daniel Gafford goaltend was the incorrect call. Avdija was upset with the call post-game. Thomas also got fouled earlier by Delon Wright that wasn’t called, but also got away with a travel.
February 5, 2023 | 3:58 pm EST Update
Dalton Johnson: “The first thing he said to me was, ‘The good thing is, I’m going to be back.'” Steve Kerr talked with Steph Curry last night. Steph’s fear was the injury could have been season ending. The MRI made him very happy