The Starting 5: A look at some of the best hoops content from around the internet
1. “15 great moments from Yao Ming’s Hall of Fame career” — Daniel Tran, Yardbarker
Unlike many NBA players, Yao Ming’s greatness goes beyond his abilities on the court. He’s 7’6″, but Yao was also a huge part of the NBA’s international expansion. Yao has also found various ways to contribute to society, including his own charitable foundation. Had it not been for injuries, Yao Ming would’ve gone down not just as a great person, but one of the all-time great big men. Nonetheless, he averaged 19 and nine over the course of his career and made eight All-Star appearances. Some of Yao’s greatest moments, which are detailed in the article linked above, include posterizing dunks, no-look passes and game-winners.
2. “Like old times, vintage Iverson tardy and candid” — Scott Howard-Cooper, NBA.com
Allen Iverson showed up fashionably late to the Hall of Fame presser on Thursday, with multiple gold chains on and a Yankees cap. Not much has changed for the former NBA guard. Iverson displayed his bravado and emotion, and he even got a little defensive when asked why he was late, which was reportedly due to a traveling issue. A guest asked Iverson how important his teammates were, to which Iverson responded by saying they’re the only reason for his success. Iverson spoke on a number of topics, including his relationship with the city of Philadelphia, playing on the 2004 Olympic team and his football career.
3. “Breaking down the most underrated player on each NBA team” — Matt Moore, CBS Sports
As sports fans, we often use the terms “overrated” and “underrated” to describe players. Matt Moore has two sets of criteria for a player to be considered underrated: they have to be generally unknown by most fans, and their skills have to be underappreciated even by the NBA die-hards. Stretch 4s comprise most of Moore’s list of underrated players, even though the Warriors have led many to understand the importance of small ball and floor spacing. These players aren’t considered superstars, and likely never will be, but they’re a vital piece to each of their respective teams.
4. “Jerry Reinsdorf’s competitiveness a big reason he’s Hall of Fame bound” — K.C. Johnson, Chicago Tribune
Bulls owner Jerry Reinsdorf will be inducted into the Hall of Fame on Friday night. A few years ago, Reinsdorf thought he had another championship quality team with Derrick Rose and Joakim Noah that could win multiple rings a la the Michael Jordan era. Unfortunately, injuries prevented any hope of significant success. The Bulls put an end to the Rose era this summer, and Reinsdorf touched on why they felt they had to move on from the former MVP. He also says that the Rondo-Wade-Butler trio won’t be as big of a problem as people believe because they’re all smart players who will figure out how to play together. The article is filled with interesting quotes from the Bulls owner.
5. “Ben Gordon open to Euroleague offers for upcoming season” — John Hobbs, TalkBasket.net
The last time the NBA saw Ben Gordon on the court was two seasons ago with the Orlando Magic. He was coming off the bench and his skills had already begun to erode, but he hopes to get another shot this year. He was invited to the Warriors’ training camp last season but was the first player to get cut, and no one else seemed interested in his services. However, Gordon says he understands if he has to spend a year in Europe to play basketball. Perhaps playing overseas will raise his stock in the eyes of NBA scouts, but it’s unlikely that the 33-year-old gets another chance in the NBA.