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OKC Loud Links: Stern on Vacation, Players Stay Busy

The lockout continues as David Stern heads out of town to who knows where and the NBPA is left wondering how they continue to end up on the short end of public sentiment. Ever wonder what Stern does in his spare time? 

Stern Unavailable, Players Cancel Meeting | Ball Don't Lie

With NBA training camps potentially two months away, expediency is still on the back burner. It isn't necessarily David Stern's fault though; neither side has expressed anything close to a sense of urgency. Stern is simply continuing to control the debate, which the NBPA has yet to even attempt to do. Perhaps Stern is just taking an outing to get together with his buddies to do their annual fantasy football draft.

Stern Hopeful for Agreement |

David Stern proves once again why he is a master negotiator. Even if I don't necessarily agree with his position in all this, I cannot help but nod my head when I see him get out in front of the debate and control it like he is here. He'd make a great press secretary for a President.

David Stern a Master of His Domain | SB Nation

Ziller tends to agree with my sentiment. What is happening here, even though Ziller argues that the NBPA president, Derek Fisher, is probably the best one they've ever had, is that the NBPA is constantly playing defense instead of offense. Look at the sequence Ziller describes - Stern is heading out on vacation, and yet because he pushed the debate first, it appears like it is the players who are refusing to commit to meetings. Stern is like a weird combination of Gordon Gekko and Dolores Umbridge. 

No One Really Wants Parity | Wages of Wins

This is correct, of course. We float the idea of parity because it "seems" right and equitable. However, in the real world parity just means that everybody is mediocre. At its core, the NBA is entertainment, and if we're going to spend our time and dollars on entertainment, we want it to be worth while. 

HoopSpeak Live: Kevin Durant and More | HoopSpeak

The boys have a number of great video posts where they discuss a number of interesting topics. In the one linked here, Mason and Strauss get into the relevance of guys like Kevin Durant going on their summer barnstorming tours during the summer.

More links after the jump.

It's All About the W's | Behind the Basket

Blott continues his W's series, this time focusing on Tim Duncan. Best power forward ever? I think so.

Quick Hitter: Ukraine Gets a Fast Three | NBA Playbook

Pruiti examines an end of game sequence that occurred between Turkey and Ukraine. In a span of 10 seconds, Ukraine manages to advance the ball up the court, run a pin down screen as well as a high post screen that gives them two viable options to hoist a 3-pointer. Another lesson for OKC to assimilate, because if it were their last season, I think we all know how this play would have gone down.

NBA Players Stay Sharp in Drew League | LA Times

Players continue to flock to the Drew and Goodman Leagues. Says Clippers forward Craig Smith:

"This is all about having fun."

Kobe Offered $2 Million - Per Month - to Play in China | Providence Journal

Nice work if you can get it.

Pacers Growth Relies on More than Just a Power Forward | Hardwood Paroxism

This is an interesting take on the Pacers, who played the #1 seed Bulls tough in last year's playoffs. I'm still not sure what the author means by this comment though:

Of course, resting on the laurels of your encouraging playoff series as an 8th seed only works if you have Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook and James Harden and Serge Ibaka.

I'm not sure exactly what "laurel-resting" he's referring to, since the Thunder jumped from first round losers in 2010 to conference finalists in 2011.

Roy Hibbert to Appear on "Parks and Recreation | Ball Don't Lie

When I think of which NBA player has the chops to idle up next to Tom Haverford, I too immediately hone in on Roy Hibbert. My second option would be Kendrick Perkins.

Long Live Flair: Brandon Jennings | Hardwood Paroxyism

Brandon Jennings has been getting quite the run too this summer, featuring both his aggressive style as well as his flair for entertaining the crowds. Just make sure to keep your eye on the ball.

Shut Up and Jam! | Wages of Wins

If you're a fan of the video game NBA Jam, then here is your ranking of the best and worst jammers of all time, based on actual wins produced. I feel that licensing issues from the 90's somehow hurt this final ranking.