SOCIAL MEDIA RELATIONS DEPT.
Are you following LeBronsElbow on Twitter? Really, someone decided that, since LeBron James continues to be one of the few NBA stars to remain out of Tweethood, there should be one for his widely-publicized injured right elbow. And if you aren't following, you've missed 140-character observations such as, "On the first Thursday of every month LeBron pays Morgan Freeman to follow him around and narrate his day" and "Anderson Varejao smells like pickles today" and "Covered in Bengay. The best doctors in the world and we're using the same stuff Vinny from rec softball uses to treat his pulled groin"
The anonymous elbow tweeter has picked up over 3,000 followers in about a week. The Knicks should be among the followers come July 1 to see if that elbow will motivate the hand to sign on the dotted line.
J.R. Smith brought himself some negative attention (is that redundant?) last week when after the Nuggets' Game 4 loss to the Jazz he tweeted, "You play selfish you lose selfish that's all I'm saying about the game!" But the more interesting social media information that came out of the Jazz-Nuggets series came after Kyrylo Fesenko, the relatively unknown Ukranian center who has filled in well in Mehmet Okur's absence for the Jazz, said comments made about him by Carmelo Anthony ("Fesenko? Fesenko?" Anthony said after Game 4. "Don't get me wrong, he's playing extremely well . . . But Fesenko?") reached his home country.
"We have a Russian version of Facebook," he said. "Oh my God, everybody has sent me a text, 'Did you hear what Carmelo said?'"
Speaking of things that are sure to be closely monitored, Dwight Howard's blog, which is published on his website, got him in trouble with the NBA for - what else? - commenting about his frustrations with fouls called against him in the Magic's first round series win over the Bobcats. Howard said the series "drove me crazy" and that "it was almost comical at times how I was getting fouls called on me." What's ironic is Howard also added that "I'm not looking to say anything to get myself in trouble with the league" but then went on to say, "I just don't see other star players getting called for fouls the way I get them."
A $35,000 fine, courtesy of David Stern, awaited in his inbox the next day.
FROM ONE END OF THE BENCH TO THE OTHER
This year's NBA Coach of the Year, Scott Brooks of the Oklahoma City Thunder, got into head coaching the same way he got into the NBA: as an unheralded, overlooked workaholic. Brooks was undrafted out of UC-Irvine but after a year in the CBA, he found his way onto the 76ers roster in 1988 and played 10 seasons as a scrappy point guard, including one with the Knicks (1996-97) and, more memorably, three with the Houston Rockets that included the 1993-94 championship season.
Brooks took over as interim coach of the Thunder last season after P.J. Carlisemo was fired less than a month into the season and earned himself the job by season's end with a 22-47 finish. He had been an assistant for one season in Sacramento (2006-07) and started his coaching career on George Karl's staff with the Nuggets from 2003-06.
Brooks' Thunder are such a young team that most don't remember him as a player, especially as a member of the '94 Rockets.
Brooks averaged 2.6 points and 1.7 assists in 10.4 minutes in 34 playoff games with 28 DNPs. But he does have a ring and, considering the great potential in this Kevin Durant-led team, he one day could be one of the few who wins one as a player and a coach.
60 days until July 1, when LeBron James can become a free agent