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Blatt Gets a Ring, Nerlens Has a Groin, and Greg Monroe Enters the Rumor Mill

There’s something for everyone in the NBA

Getty Images
Getty Images

We are in full NBA Preview mode over here at Ringer HQ. Last week was Warriors Week, when we kicked the tires on the latest-model superteam, with pieces on Klay, Steph, KD, Harry Barnes, Ayesha, and more. This is Banana Boat Week. But we don’t want to lose sight of the other stories percolating in this embryonic NBA season. So for the sake of basketball and blogging, let’s do the news-and-notes thing, shall we?

LeBron Thinks It’s Cool the Cavs Are Giving David Blatt His Li’l Ring or Whatever

Last month, Jason Lloyd of the Akron Beacon Journal reported that the Cavaliers would order David Blatt a championship ring, which was weird for all sorts of reasons, chief among them that they fired Blatt midway through last season. Blatt accepted Cleveland’s offer (gift? Olive branch? What do you call something like this?), one that current head coach Tyronn Lue was pretty high on, according to Tom Withers of the Associated Press:

I suppose it would be cruel or disrespectful to not give a ring to someone who was physically present for half of a championship season, but still. At some point kindness is just, like, patronizing. Or sublimated guilt on some “you’re a great guy; there’s definitely someone out there just for you” shit. At any rate, LeBron is fine with all this, whatever, but he would like you to know that it was a decision from the top and that he had no input whatsoever, thank you very much and God bless.

Nerlens Noel Just Can’t Go Today

The Bucks County Courier Times reports that Nerlens Noel sat out the Sixers’ Thursday-night preseason home opener against the Wizards because of a left groin injury. What’s strange about that is that Noel “notified” them, which reads that the injury was self-diagnosed. What’s doubly strange about it is that, with Jahlil Okafor and Joel Embiid — who’s finally playing actual, real games of professional basketball now, praise be — Philadelphia has three centers who can play 30 minutes a night, and Noel has already expressed skepticism about that. “I don’t think it makes too much sense to come into the season with such a heavy lineup at the center position,” Noel said during media day. “I don’t see a way of it working. It’s just a logjam.”

While the team is putting forth both Okafor and Embiid as stars, Noel is unofficially on the trading block. And with Boston or Toronto as possible destinations in the near future, this “groin injury” feels slightly … precautionary.

Are the San Antonio Spurs the Most Swagless Team in the League?


Jeremy Lin Learns That Almost Doesn’t Count

Almost heard you saying
You were finally freeeeeeeeeeeee

But you can’t get to heaven
Half off the ground
Everybody knows,
Almost doesn’t count

(He put up 21 points on 7-of-11 shooting in a really good preseason outing against the Pistons on Thursday night, but we’ve gotta get these jokes off regardless.)

Ben McLemore to the Bucks?

Three-fifths of the way through their five-year plan to Acquire All Available Dudes With Ridiculously Long Limbs and get them all on the court at the same time, the Bucks are in search of a wing to make the most of their three-headed Hydra (Giannis Antetokounmpo, Jabari Parker, Mirza Teletovic). One possibility? Ben McLemore, who, after being drafted in 2013, has just been, like, existing in Sacramento for the last three years.

In return the Kings would get Michael Carter-Williams and Greg Monroe, and it would just be so unabashedly Kings to trade for another big after acquiring 500 of them in the last two years.