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Spurs’ Popovich Will Coach West All-Stars

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San Antonio Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich will coach the Western Conference All-Stars in the 2016 NBA All-Star Game, to be televised by TNT at 8 p.m. ET on Sunday, Feb. 14 from Air Canada Centre in Toronto.

Head coaches whose teams have the best records in each conference following the games played two weeks prior to the All-Star Game serve as the All-Star Game head coaches, but no head coach is allowed to participate in two consecutive All-Star Games.

Interim head coach Luke Walton led the Golden State Warriors to a 39-4 record in the season’s first 43 games prior to the Jan. 22 return of head coach Steve Kerr.   Despite Golden State holding the conference’s best record (41-4, .911), Kerr is ineligible for the coaching honor because he led last year’s West All-Stars.  Popovich’s Spurs (38-7, .844) have clinched the next best record in the Western Conference, earning the five-time NBA Champion his fourth nod as the head coach of the West.

via NBA press release

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Report: LeBron James’ Camp Pessimistic of Paul George Leaving Thunder

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Remember when [Paul] George was so hell-bent on joining the Lakers? Well, that was before he found his way out of Indiana and into an Oklahoma City situation that might suit him well after all.

Even with the Thunder coming just two losses away from missing the playoffs, and then falling to Utah in six games during their first-round matchup, there is all sorts of optimism in Oklahoma City that George will re-sign. Conversely, there’s pessimism in [LeBron] James’ camp that George would leave Oklahoma City. George has raved about the Thunder since the beginning, making it clear to USA TODAY Sports in September that the organization had earned his confidence from the start.

It’s not hard to understand what might compel George to stay. The chemistry with Russell Westbrook is bound to improve if they have a second year together, and it doesn’t hurt that their off-court relationship continues to appear very strong. Ditto for George’s dynamic with coach Billy Donovan.

Source: Sam Amick of USA Today

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Report: Spurs Want to Keep Kawhi Leonard or Trade to East

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Fellow West teams have been told, in essence, to get lost – none moreso than the Lakers, according to ESPN. As it stands, the Spurs are determined to either fix the situation or trade [Kawhi] Leonard to an Eastern Conference team. For teams other than the Lakers, the threat of losing Leonard in free agency next summer makes the prospect of offering meaningful assets a complicated, calculated risk.

Not to mention the fact that the Spurs aren’t showing much urgency to make a move just yet.

Coach Gregg Popovich met with Leonard in San Diego on Tuesday in an attempt to mend fences, and longtime general manager R.C. Buford made it clear on Thursday that San Antonio is still trying to make this relationship work.

Source: Sam Amick of USA Today

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Report: No Rift Between Chris Paul and Rockets

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As for the recent report from Fox Sports’ Chris Broussard that there are rising tensions between the two sides because [Chris] Paul wants the full max and isn’t sure if he’ll get it, two people with knowledge of the situation refuted the idea there is any friction between the sides.

Source: Sam Amick of USA Today

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