AP Photo/David Zalubowski
By Brian Windhorst |
Special to ESPN.com
CLEVELAND -- There were certainly sexier offseason acquisitions than Eddie Jones and Trenton Hassell, the Dallas Mavericks' perimeter defensive imports. But they've already helped their team win at least one game, combining on Wednesday to shut down LeBron James on what was supposed to be a special night in Cleveland.
"Kobe has disrespected the game by not playing hard and giving his absolute best." Are you kidding me? Because he didn't play hard in a PRESEASON game? Did you watch last night's game where his own fans booed him? Could you honestly pick out a player that played harder or showed more emotion?Kobe may be guilty of many things -- you could call him petulant, disloyal, a prima donna, etc -- but failing to play hard and give his all is not one of them. When there are so many other players guilty of cruising much more than Kobe, leveling such an accusation and lacing it with words like' abyss' and 'sinful' is just asinine." -- pantherhare, commenting on TrueHoop's Wednesday's Bullets
Antoine Wright, Nets
Who? The third-year Nets afterthought from Texas A&M went off for 21 points, including 14 in the fourth quarter and overtime, helping deliver the opening win over the Bulls. Wednesday's Worst
LeBron James, Cavs
Maybe it's hangover from L'Affaire Yankees Chapeau. Shut out in the first half. Bron shot just 2-of-11 from the field and had five turnovers as the Cavs were thrashed at home by Dallas. Quote of the Night
"They don't look like robots this year. They look like a totally different team."
-- Wizards guard Gilbert Arenas on the Pacers team that beat the Wiz, 119-110. • See how Wednesday's best fared
-- Andrew Ayres
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- Luol Deng is very much in play in the conversations between Chicago and Los Angeles, ESPN.com has learned. And it's mainly because of Bryant's wishes that Deng is still wearing a Chicago uniform. A source with knowledge of the trade talks said Deng has been included in proposals swapped between the teams, but Bryant has continually threatened to veto almost any deal in which Deng would be included. Bryant wants to be sure that the team he joins has enough talent remaining to compete for the NBA title. The source said talks between the teams had stagnated, though by no means were they dead. And while the difficulties involved in the deal -- making the salaries match, and trying to trade players onto 15-man rosters now that the preseason roster flexibility has elapsed -- continued to be formidable, the Bulls remained determined to pursue every avenue toward acquiring Bryant from the Lakers. As ESPN.com reported on Saturday, the Lakers have asked for Deng, Thomas, guard Ben Gordon and rookie Joakim Noah as the core parts of any trade for Bryant. Contrary to most reports, the Bulls remain ready and willing to deal Deng, the source said. But if they're going to include Deng in a deal, they will not part with more than one of the other three, said the source. Even then, it is not clear that any trade involving Deng would be acceptable to Bryant, who is wielding the power of the NBA's only no-trade clause by threatening to veto certain deals. • Full Sheridan story
AP Photo/Tony Dejak
LeBron can't believe his team was en route to its worst home loss since April 5, 2005.