He knows NBA 2K17 MT Coins  . Memphis should prove the same by not getting outbid 

for him. He's the best guy for their job.


A Man in High Demand. From Giorgos Chaloulous:

Obviously the Bucks are in need of a center to protect the rim and let Monroe free do his thing 


from the 4 spot. If I was in the front office my holy grail would be the Heat's Hassan Whiteside.

His length and physical attributes are in absolute coordination with the rest of the team, and a 


starting five of the Greek Freak, Khris Middleton, Jabari Parker, Monroe (or sixth man and Parker 


at the four hoping for some good news at the draft) and Whiteside, could easily became the 


defensive juggernaut coach Jason Kidd has in mind, and reach from one to basket to another if they 


spread their hands. This is something coming from my instincts rather than my knowledge about 


tactical x's and o's or systems. Do you agree with my instinct that he is a good fit??

Whiteside would make sense for Milwaukee if the Bucks want to get back to their defensive bona 


fides, Giorgos. But it will cost them. The league now estimates, based on a memo sent to teams last 


month, that the salary cap next year will be around $92 million, up from the previous estimate of 


$89 million.

Players, like Whiteside, with six or fewer years of NBA experience, can sign contracts that start 


at up to 25 percent of the cap. In this case, that would mean $23 million in the first year of the 


dealt -- though, for reasons that are way too complicated to get into here, the max salary is not 


actually 25 percent of the cap; it's slightly less. (Trust me on this.) So, for the sake of 


argument, let's say Whiteside starts at $20 million next year. He will be able to sign a four-year 


deal with another team, with annual raises of 4.5 percent. If he started at $20 million, he'd be in 


line for a four-year deal worth around $85.6 million from another team other than Miami.


Even if Milwaukee deemed that financial outlay worth it, the Bucks just put $50 million into Greg 


Monroe, and they still have their 2014 first-round pick in Parker. That's about one high-profile 


big man too many (see 76ers, Philadelphia), even though Parker's still on his rookie contract. But, 


would Whiteside be a good fit with the Bucks, the way Kidd wants to play? Yes, he would. But 


they're not going to be the only suitor for him, of course. There could be a dozen teams, all with 


max cap room, who'll take a run at him.

Officially, Awful? From Maitreya Kundalia:

It's no secret that the officiating has been ghastly throughout these playoffs. Every single game 


there are so many blatant missed calls which the NBA ends up admitting. However, just admitting it 


is not enough. I can only imagine how frustrated the players must feel if I am so upset. It seems 


as though the referees are trying to be the center of attention over the players. I want to know 


how these referees are disciplined? They are getting away with everything. If a player or coach 


says anything they are immediately fined, but the referees can ruin games, then go on social media 


and take cheap shots at some players wives and still not face any consequences. They do not seem to 


be professionals at all. I have honestly never been more disgusted at the NBA than through these 



I know what you're referring to, Maitreya, but for those who don't: in the waning seconds of Game 5 


of the first-round series between Miami and Charlotte, the Heat thought that Dwyane Wade was fouled 


across the arm by the Hornets' Courtney Lee as he went up for a shot with Miami down two. (Judge 


for yourself). After the game ended, and the Hornets had won 90-88, Wade's wife, actress Gabrielle 


Union, took to Twitter to vehemently vent about the non-call. (Here, here, here, here, etc. Of 


course, this is not a unique position; two days prior, the Pistons' Reggie Jackson had pretty much 


said the same thing.

The next day, the NBA's Under Two Minutes Report said the referees were correct not to call a foul 


on Lee (here is the report). The section on Wade's shot, ending with a correct no-call (or "CNC" in 


league parlance), begins at the bottom of Page 1 of the report. The league's report says that 


Charlotte center Cody Zeller, who also was defending Wade on the shot, made incidental contact with 


Wade as he went up and maintained a legal guarding position. As for Lee, the league said he first 


made contact with the ball while Wade was rising to shoot, and because of that initial contact, his 


"subsequent, minor arm contact" with Wade was "incidental." The league said Lee again hit Wade's 


arm a fraction of a second later, but in the eyes of the league, that wasn't a foul, either, 


because "Wade has already lost possession of the ball."

After the league sent out the report, the NBA Referees' official Twitter feed sent out a Tweet to 


Union, which read: "The referees are not always right, but on this call we were. #NBA confirms the 


non-call in the L2M". (Here is the actual Tweet.)

To your points:

-- Referees who consistently make errors are disciplined in several ways, though almost none are 


publicly acknowledged by the league. (This was part of Union's argument; players and coaches are 


fined publicly all the time by the NBA when they break rules, she argued; why aren't referees?) 


But, they are disciplined. One, they don't get playoff assignments, which matters greatly to them 


even if it doesn't to you. Two, they can lose their jobs; a few referees every year aren't brought 


back for reasons other than health. And three, they are, on occasion, publicly reprimanded by the 


NBA for egregious errors -- as when the league suspended Joey Crawford for the playoffs in 2007 


http://www.nytimes.com/2007/04/18/sports/basketball/18referee.html?_r=0 after, in a late regular 


season game, he ejected Tim Duncan, who was sitting on the Spurs' bench, for ... laughing.

I don't know that the refs should be Tweeting to any player's wife, even if they're ultimately 


vindicated in the call they made. But I also don't think what was said to Union was in any way a 


cheap shot.

Simple answers to simple questions. From Glen Black:

What is Phil Jackson doing?

I don't know, Glen. I really don't.

Send your questions, comments, criticisms and anything as remotely cool as a skateboarding dog to 


daldridgetnt@gmail.com. If your e-mail is sufficiently funny, thought-provoking, well-written or 


snarky, we just might publish it!


(last week's averages in parentheses)

1) Stephen Curry (DNP -- sprained right knee)

2) Kawhi Leonard (22 ppg, 8 rpg, 2.7 apg, .426 FG, .739 FT): Per NBA.com/Stats, Leonard's -19 (that 


is, the point differential when a player is on the court) in Sunday's loss to Oklahoma City was his 


first negative outing in eight playoff games this year.

Leonard Goes Off In Game 3

Kawhi Leonard heats up for 31 points and 11 rebounds as the Spurs beat the Thunder.


3) Kevin Durant (31.7 ppg, 5.7 rpg, 3.7 apg, .564 FG, .833 FT): Picked an especially important 


moment to post his 51st career 40-point game, with his Thunder 12 minutes away Sunday from a 3-1 


series deficit to San Antonio.

4) LeBron James (24.3 ppg, 8.5 rpg, 8.8 apg, .507 FG, .591 FT): You cannot say this enough times: 


LeBron James, with four more postseason victories, will appear in his (ital)sixth straight(endital) 


NBA Finals -- four in a row with Miami followed by two straight with the Cavaliers. Whatever you 


think of him, good or bad, doesn't matter -- that would be an amazing, remarkable achievement, and 


he should get props for it.

5) Russell Westbrook (24.7 ppg, 7.7 rpg, 11 apg, .481 FG, .850 FT): Do you wonder if, when Pope 


Francis is deciding on topics to include in his next Papal Encyclical, he muses, "this Russell 


Westbrook, he is so gifted. Should he just try and break down the defense every time down, or try 


to draw and dish? I mean, it's very complex."


1) If the playoffs bring clarity to who is elite in the Association and who is not, Damian Lillard 


was damn near translucent Saturday against the Warriors. Incredible performance with his team's 


season, essentially, on the line.

2) Been two weeks since I wrote a normal Tip, and this fell through the cracks during that 


interval: the Nets are making a bunch of really smart hires, but tapping Hawks assistant Kenny 


Atkinson as coach is among the smartest. He is one of the best player-development guys in the game.

3) Wow, what a story from Paul Coro about the Suns' Alex Len saving a friend from drowning last 


week in the Dominican.

4) A great read by ESPN's Kate Fagan on the issues surrounding WNBA players needing to continue to 


play overseas during the winter months to supplement their incomes earned in the States.


1) If you're the Hawks this morning, this is when, as TNT analyst Chris Webber put it so well, that 


you have to be stubborn. You have a strong organization. You have a good coach. You have good 


players. But you've lost eight straight playoff games to the Cavaliers, in consecutive sweeps 


(though, ironically, this year's series was closer than last year's, when the Cavs didn't have 


Kevin Love on the floor and Kyrie Irving was limited). The temptation will be great to make major 


changes. But, they have to be the right ones, if they are made at all. Of course Atlanta should 


make a run at Kevin Durant, like everyone else. Failing his arrival, though, the Hawks should make 


every effort to re-sign Al Horford, the heart of the team; there just aren't bigs of his caliber 


around. Then they have to resolve once and for all who their point guard is going to be -- Jeff 


Teague or Dennis Schroder -- and live with it; package the other with, say, a Mike Muscala and see 


what that can bring. Would Milwaukee give up one of its many bigs for the point guard it obviously 


needs? To me, that's not an overhaul.

GameTime: Hawks' Future

Sam Mitchell and Dennis Scott discuss the future for the Atlanta Hawks after their series loss to 


the Cavaliers.


2) No one knows how Chris Bosh's issues with the Heat will ultimately be resolved. But I'm not sure 


how anyone can expect Miami to clear him to return to play next season if there is any question 


about whether he'll have a recurrence of the blood clots that ended his season last year.

3) This isn't helping a team get back to Seattle, troglodytes.

4A) RIP to Kevin Tatum, the longtime sportswriter at the Philadelphia Inquirer, who passed away 


last week at 64. We worked together for a few years, and he was a gentle soul who was always 


willing and able to help with any question or issue you had on a story. He covered Philly hoops, 


from high schools to the 76ers, with distinction for almost 30 years, having arrived there after 


growing up in D.C. -- in fact, he and I both attended Taft Junior High School, a few years apart. 


Just a good guy, a good writer and a good man.

4B) RIP, Howard Garfinkel, aka, Garf, the co-founder of the Five Star Basketball Camp, which became 


the jumping-off point for generations of young basketball players who wanted to be great. Being 


discovered at Garf's -- the camp also was instrumental in developing the coaching careers of so 


many greats, from Hubie Brown and Rick Pitino, to Mike Fratello and John Calipari, to Jim Valvano 


and Chuck Daly -- was everyone's seal of approval.

GameTime: Howard Garfinkel

Vince Cellini reports on the passing of basketball lifer and scout Howard Garfinkel.



162 -- College undergrad and international players that have filed as Early Entry candidates for 


this year's Draft. Undergrads who have declared for the Draft but change their minds and wish to 


return to college have until May 25 to withdraw if they want to retain their collegiate 



77 -- Three-pointers the Cavaliers made in their four-game sweep of the Hawks in the Eastern 


Conference semifinals, setting a league record for most 3-pointers made during a four-game 


postseason series.

18 -- Consecutive playoff series, per the South Florida Sun-Sentinel's Ira Winderman, in which the 


Heat has won at least one road game, an NBA record.


--Grizzlies center Marc Gasol (@MarcGasol), Thursday, 3:14 p.m., finally ditching the motor scooter 


that he'd used to get around after season-ending foot surgery.


"For me, when I'm talking to women, I'm 7 feet. In basketball circles, I'm 6-9."

-- Kevin Durant, to the Wall Street Journal, about why he lies about his height -- actually, 6 feet 


11 inches -- both up and down, depending on the situation.

"Ever since after the championship, we've been basically a first-round exit. We've been a seven, 


eight seed. We've only won a few playoff games, and obviously the goal was to compete at the 


highest level in my last couple of years, so there is some moving to do, some thinking, some 


putting our heads together the next few weeks heading into free agency, heading into the draft. So 


this is just one move that hopefully starts a chain reaction for us to get better again, to compete 


really at a high level. We'll see how it goes."

-- Dirk Nowitzki, to 1310 AM in Dallas, on why he's planning to opt out of his current contract, 


which has a year remaining, while getting more assurances from Mavericks owner Mark Cuban and GM 


Donnie Nelson that the roster will be improved dramatically before next season. Nowitzki, as he has 


throughout his career, has already indicated he plans on re-signing with the Mavs. Since beating 


Miami in the Finals in 2011, Dallas is just 5-16 in four first-round playoff series, losing each.

"With the openings in the NBA at that time and then other openings that we thought might come 


about, once we finished the interview, we decided quickly that he was our first choice. Why wait? 


Just get it done. And that's what we did."

-- Lakers GM Mitch Kupchak, at his press conference last week formally announcing the hiring of