NBA Essentials ranks our six favorite stories of the day.
1. Trail Blazers Center Court. It takes a big man to admit you got dunked on. Greg Oden, today (and, err, every day) you are a big man. Oden tells Casey Holdahl: "I've had this argument a lot. When you're in the vicinity; if you're in the picture, you got dunked on."I rest my case.
2. Free Darko. The thrilling conclusion of the Every Game Preview.
3. New York Times. Harvey Araton looks into the life of Isiah Thomas since his April demotion.
4. Deadspin. A spurned Sonics fan gets off a marvelous rant by letter.
5. 48minutes.net. Anthony Randolph spends practice getting revenge for previous practice dunks.
6. Boston Globe. Jermaine O'Neal on the latest incarnation of the Indiana Pacers: "As an organization, we went from thinking about actually putting together a team that is going to win to actually putting out a team for image purposes. It was hard."