Good afternoon and welcome to the Bullet Passes. It's a sunny day here in Baltimore, and I hope it's sunny wherever you are. It's the day before Thanksgiving people, and that means food, fun, cheesecake and all those wonderful smells that surround this day. I'm hoping for a great one, and I hope you have one too. My other favorite thing about Thanksgiving is a day off to digest the NBA a bit. No external jobs, just watching sports, eating and thinking. Sometimes that's not such a bad thing. But for now, let's feed you some NBA links and get this day in gear, shall we?
Want to know who you should follow on Twitter if you love the NBA, besides me of course? Here is a list of 40 people who should make you gaga about the NBA. Follow them, if you are not already.
Udonis Haslem is about to break a record in Miami and become the Heat's all-time leading rebounder. Crazy, right? Considering Alonzo Mourning played a good portion of his career there, I find this surprising. Even more surprising is Haslem was a chubby kid who couldn't seem to get a rebound if his life depended on it. Hard work pays off, apparently.
While you are celebrating your family traditions tomorrow, do you ever wonder how the rich and famous do theirs? (Let me answer my own question here. This is the reality-TV generation. Of course you want to know!) Well then, here is a glimpse into how the "basketball version of the Waltons" celebrate the holidays.
It looks like Jeremy Pargo will be standing in for Uncle Drew during the Cavs next month of play. Not really what I was expecting as a stand-in, but I'm not sure the Cavaliers have a lot of options at the moment.
There was a lot of flopping going on in L.A. last night, and most of it was coming from the visiting Brooklyn Nets. Metta World Peace thinks it should stop. I do too. STOP FLOPPING is my new movement. Hop on board.
The oft-injured Andrew Bogut will miss another three games, which means Stephen Curry has to wait three more games before he can break his own ankles again.
Chris Perkins thinks Kobe Bryant and Dwyane Wade are no longer in the NBA's top three players. Sadly, I agree. Do you?
SB Nation has a post of 15 stories that talk about the biggest surprises of the year so far for the league. I'm going to give you a couple to chew on and you can go find the rest on your own because, well, because I think you are more than capable of finding a few things on your own tomorrow after you have stuffed yourself silly. Don't be such a lazy slug, you lazy slug.
The first surprise is the Chicago Bulls and Joakim Noah. Oh, and the fact that outside of Derrick Rose, the team has somehow managed to stay healthy.
Another non-surprise to me is the play of Kenneth Faried. He is an animal or a manimal or whatever. Regardless, someone seems surprised by the kid's output.
This one is a combo, a little Charlotte Bobcats and a little Raymond Felton, which is, I guess, the surprise of this piece.
Just how good is Raymond Felton? He has his Knicks on pace as a contender and is averaging 15.4 points per game along with 6.4 assists. Could it be that the oft-considered overweight point guard is starting to get things together in New York? You decide. Or maybe the league will decide come playoff time.
Jamal Crawford is a chucker, let's be honest. The guy has yet to meet a shot he didn't like, and I doubt that will change anytime soon. With that being said, is there some value in his ability to create a shot at will? The Clippers seem to think so, as they gave Crawford the green light all season. So far, he is helping to make them a powerhouse in the West.
Speaking of chuckers, I know you saw Nick Young chucking up shots last night against the Raptors. I know you also saw them going in at a ridiculous clip. Gotta love those high-percentage fadeaway threes, right? It seems maybe the Sixers might just love that style of play. After all, it wasn't so long ago Allen Iverson left the Sixers as the golden con.
Mike D'Antoni made his Lakers coaching debut last night and got a win, 95-90, against the Nets. So far, so good. Lakers fans are relaxing a little now, I hope.
Even though Dirk Nowitzki won't be back for a little while, he plans to be in Dallas through 2016, which was at least part of his reason for not wanting to push his injury too hard too soon. Though he did say on Nov. 20 he foresees a mid-December return date after undergoing arthroscopic surgery on his right knee Oct. 19.
The Boston Celtics may lose Darko Milicic for the remainder of the season if the reserve center decides to travel to Serbia to be with his ill mother. No definitive decision has been made, but coach Doc Rivers says he has had multiple discussions with Milicic on the possibility.
Article of the Day comes from Henry Abbott at True Hoop. Seems Russell Westbrook might be following in the shoes of Kobe Bryant and Allen Iverson by playing a little hero ball, or ball hogging for those of you who think hero ball is cool.
Last but not least, a little video going into Turkey Day. It's one of my favorite bands, Matt & Kim, with their song "Let's Go." The key here is their friend, PAT THE ROC, from NYC shows up and puts on a one-take dribbling display for the ages. It's a lot of fun to watch and the music is pretty awesome as well. Enjoy!
And that's it for today. I think I will show up tomorrow just to give you a little love and something to read while you are on the coach wishing you hadn't eaten the last slice of pie. But until then, enjoy the smells of the holiday and I will see you tomorrow. Have a good one
MATCH-UP TIME (ET)
Toronto at Charlotte 7 p.m.
Detroit at Orlando 7 p.m.
Philadelphia at Cleveland 7 p.m.
New Orleans at Indiana 7 p.m.
San Antonio at Boston 7:30 p.m.
Washington at Atlanta 7:30 p.m.
Milwaukee at Miami 7:30 p.m.
LA Clippers at Oklahoma City 7:30 p.m.
Chicago at Houston 8 p.m.
Denver at Minnesota 8 p.m.
New York at Dallas 8:30 p.m.
Portland at Phoenix 9 p.m.
LA Lakers at Sacramento 10 p.m.
Brooklyn at Golden State 10:30 p.m.
Birthdays for November 21
Player Name (playing years)
Batiste, Mike 2002-2002
Boone, Josh 2006-2009
Dischinger, Terry 1962-1972
Lewis, Reggie 1987-1992
Lucas, John 2005-2010
Maxwell, Cedric 1977-1987
Monroe, Earl 1967-1979
Polynice, Olden 1987-2003
Sanders, Larry 2010-2010
Simon, Miles 1998-1998
Swift, Stromile 2000-2008
Taylor, Ron 1969-1971