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Zgoda's NBA short takes

  • November 10, 2012 - 5:58 PM
Even when they're winning, the Los Angeles Clippers are, well, still the Clippers.

They've already thumped the Lakers, Memphis and a San Antonio team that swept them out of the playoffs last spring, and they've lost to Golden State and Cleveland.

So just who are these guys?

"That's a good question," All-Star point guard Chris Paul said after beating the Spurs. "We're trying to figure that out."

Tick, tick, tick

James Harden is suddenly Houston's new franchise player, and he's getting paid like it to the tune of nearly $80 million. But he still is stung that Oklahoma City rushed to trade him after making a reported four-year, $54 million offer that he didn't immediately accept.

"After everything we established -- everything we had done -- you give me an hour?" Harden told Yahoo! Sports last week. "This was one of the biggest decisions of my life. I wanted to go home and pray about it. It hurt me. It hurt.''

Asked if he might have accepted the Thunder's offer if he had been given more time, Harden said, "Who knows? Who knows what another day would have done."

A changed man

The Wolves on Wednesday get their first look at rebuilding Charlotte and transformed Byron Mullins, the former Ohio State center who spent two seasons buried on Oklahoma City's bench and then mostly shot jumpers last season with the Bobcats.

Suddenly, at new coach Mike Dunlap's urging, he has become something of a defensive force, particularly on the backboards.

"He's got another level in him," Dunlap told the Charlotte Observer. "He's got the potential to be one of the better players in this league."

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