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Suns Kelly Oubre Jr. Wants to Stay Long-Term

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Phoenix Suns forward Kelly Oubre Jr. is slated to hit restricted free agency later this summer, but he prefers to stay in Phoenix for the long-term, hopeful that a long-term deal can be worked out.

Oubre was acquired from the Washington Wizards earlier this season as part of the Trevor Ariza trade.

“Why would I go anywhere else?” Oubre said, according to Kellan Olson of Arizona Sports. 

“I’m here, I’m getting established and I’m not a guy that really wants to be on a million teams in my tenure in the league and I just want to create a dynasty and a legacy here in Phoenix with [Deandre Ayton], [Devin Booker], [Mikal Bridges], all the guys in the locker room. It’s beautiful.”

The Suns continue to struggle and are lottery-bound, yet again, but Oubre sees improvement from the team.

“We’re learning from our mistakes that we’ve made in previous games and throughout the season and we’re starting to realize that we are definitely capable of competing with the best so we have to continue to go out there and prove that,” Oubre said. 

“We’re just trying to get some momentum going into next year.”

“I’m just so happy that Phoenix, (Suns general manager James Jones) made the call and traded for me to come to Phoenix man because that was the biggest blessing of my career so far,” Oubre said.

“One-hundred percent I would love to remain Phoenix.”

Boston Celtics

Celtics’ Kyrie Irving Credits Long Plane Ride for Big Win Over Warriors

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The Boston Celtics roller coaster season moved in the right direction as they had a big, blow-out victory over the Golden State Warriors in Oakland on Tuesday night.

Celtics guard Kyrie Irving credits a long plane ride, in which he had a lengthy talk with Celtics’ head coach Brad Stevens, for helping the team snap out of their recent funk, and the good feeling has spread throughout the team.

“I understand it’s one game,” Hayward said, according to ESPN’s Tim Bontemps. “You are going to have ups and downs in the season. I’ll try to build off the things I did correctly tonight, and the next time you have a bad game, try to learn from that one.”

Hayward’s recent play has provided a spark for the team.

“It makes our team even better when he’s the confident Gordon and playing like the Gordon we know,” Celtics guard Marcus Smart said.

“We know it’s been tough on him. That’s one thing about him, you have to give it to him: That man keeps working and working. Even though things aren’t going for him, he continues to work, he doesn’t quit, and that’s why we’re so, so optimistic about getting the old Gordon back, because we see how hard he works.”

“That long plane ride helped us out,” Celtics guard Kyrie Irving said. “I’ll just say that. That long plane ride helped us out.

“We needed it. It was just we were going to get to a point where we were just going to get tired of fighting each other, fighting the outside world. And it doesn’t even really matter. So, we just wanted to come out here and just play basketball. This is our sanctuary. And we have to do everything to protect it. We can’t let anybody infiltrate it.”

Irving opened up about the conversations he had with both Stevens and president of basketball operations Danny Ainge.

“Well, I mean, it gets a little overwhelming, like I said, but this is just the business I’m in,” Irving said. “The business part of it is what makes it terrible for me, honestly, dealing with all this s—. I’m going to be honest with you guys. The basketball part, I have to keep that fun. That’s where I’m great, that’s where I love to play and be around my teammates, that’s what makes me happy.

“The business part of it is going to be the business. Personal side of being out here with my teammates is the only thing that should matter. It wasn’t really a change of perspective; it was letting the guard down completely and just not thinking I’m at odds with everybody. It’s not a competition in this locker room; it’s a competition out there. That’s the most important thing.”

“Talking with Brad was very helpful, talking with Danny was very helpful, and just expressing myself rather than keeping it all in,” Irving continued. “That made it very easy to just go out and just have fun playing basketball.”

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Golden State Warriors

Warriors’ DeMarcus Cousins Discusses Criticism of Defense

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Golden State Warriors big man DeMarcus Cousins has had an up-and-down run with the Warriors this year, but has shows instances of the dominant All-Star form that he showed throughout the majority of his career.

As Cousins continues to get acclimated with his new team, and get back to form following his return from a lengthy injury, many have pointed to Cousins’ struggles on the defensive end of the court, to which Cousins takes issue with.

“It’s an adjustment to try to figure things out and see how we’re gonna play with the coverages” Cousins said following Golden State’s loss to the Boston Celtics, according to The Athletic’s Anthony Slater.

“I’m gonna adjust to this game, and like I said, we’re trying to figure it out right now, and what’s best, and it’s a different look with the personnel in the game.

“To say I’m struggling, it’s a bit foolish. It’s a different look every day with the personnel. Of course with Kyrie [Irving] and Jayson Tatum you want to be up on the screen, and then in other situations you play other guards back.

When you play a big, you play in the drop.”

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Eastern Conference

Sixers’ Brett Brown Raves About Tobias Harris, J.J. Redick

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Philadelphia 76ers head coach Brett Brown has enjoyed having forward Tobias Harris on his team, calling the veteran a “quiet assassin” on the court.

“He just plays with grace,” Brown said, according to Tom Moore of the Bucks County Courier Times. “He’s like a quiet assassin. I just like coaching him.”

Brown also praised the recent resurgence of guard J.J. Redick, who has seem to have found his groove recently.

“Great shooters shoot. It’s 82 games,” Brown said, according to Mcall.com.

“He had a few games where he was not himself. Some of that you give credit, to the Golden State Warriors as an example. Other bits, it’s just part of the flow of an 82-game, six-month season. He will respond. He’s that competitive, and that good.”

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