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Cavs trade Kyrie Irving to Celtics for Isaiah Thomas and others in blockbuster deal

Cavs trade Kyrie Irving to Celtics for Isaiah Thomas and others in blockbuster deal

The Cavs and Celtics have pulled off one of the biggest trades the NBA has seen in years, a blockbuster deal that will send Kyrie Irving to Boston for Isaiah Thomas, Jae Crowder, Ante Zizic and the Brooklyn Nets' 2018 unprotected first round pick. The final deal was reported by Brian Windhorst of ESPN.

Whew, where do we start? First of all, this is the top two teams in the East, teams that met in the conference finals this spring, trading All-Star point guards for each other. It's not often you see that.

For the Celtics, they will have Irving for at least the next two seasons under his current contract. Considering Thomas' deal runs up after this year, that's good news for them.

[RELATED: THOMAS OR IRVING? ONLY ONE IS A TOP 5 PG]

That said, this is an unbelievable haul for the Cavs. Not only do they remain very good in the short-term with Thomas stepping in to fill the same role Irving did, but they get deeper with Crowder and set themselves up extremely well long-term with the Nets' pick. The Nets were the worst team in basketball this past season, the odds of them still being very bad this season seem good. The Cavs are in good position now even if LeBron James leaves next summer, knowing they have an extra first round pick that could be a top selection.

The first game of the NBA season, by the way, is Celtics at Cavs on Oct. 17. That should be a good one.

For the rest of the Eastern Conference, teams like the Wizards, it's hard to draw major conclusions from this deal. The Cavs were the best team in the East and have a good chance of remaining the top dogs. The Celtics gave up a lot, but they also added other pieces this offseason with Gordon Hayward and Jayson Tatum. Only time will tell if either got signifincantly better or worse.

Cleveland, however, does look much better off in the long run. That could affect how some view James' future, as many have speculated about whether this will be his final season with the Cavs. Now they appear to have a very sound long-term plan.

This trade will send shockwaves throughout the NBA, but may not affect the standings in the Eastern Conference very much. Still, it's a big one.

[RELATED: WALL WORKS OUT WITH LEBRON, TWITTER OVERRACTS]

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John Wall is no longer allowed to dunk at Wizards practice per Scott Brooks' rules

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USA Today Sports Images

John Wall is no longer allowed to dunk at Wizards practice per Scott Brooks' rules

John Wall is a former NBA dunk contest winner, but Wizards head coach Scott Brooks now has a rule prohibiting the four-time All-Star from dunking during or after practices. 

Whether it will be strictly enforced or not, it's all in an effort to preserve Wall's health. The 27-year-old returned on Wednesday after sitting out nine games due to two procedures on his left knee, platelet-rich plasma (PRP) treatment and viscosupplementation injections. He sustained the injury when he bumped knees with a player on the Dallas Mavericks in a game on Nov. 7.

Now, the Wizards don't want to take any chances.

"I've done it in the past with you can imagine who that plays the same type of way," Brooks said, referring to Russell Westbrook, whom he coached with the Oklahoma City Thunder.

"[Westbrook] likes to dunk, he likes to dunk over you and he likes to talk about his dunk over you. They're the same mentality. I had that same talk with him. Save those dunks for the game. You're allowed to do it in the game, but not in practice," Brooks said.

[PODCAST: WHAT'S UP WITH MARKIEFF MORRIS?]

Brooks was realistic when asked whether Wall will actually follow the rule. He laughed when recalling whether Westbrook fell in line.

"They just looked at me, smirked and said yes. But they don't listen. They're aggressive and they love to attack, but yeah that's a rule," he said.

Wall was also asked about staying out of harm's way after shootaround on Friday morning. The reporter's question suggested Wall takes more falls than Redskins quarterback Kirk Cousins.

"I'm on the ground more than [Cousins], but I don't get the calls as often like roughing the passer," Wall joked. "But it just happens. I took a bad knee at a bad angle and there was nothing I could control that with. I play the way I play... You do try to do things so you don't take as much of a pounding. That's all I know, just all-out."

[RELATED: LATEST NBA POWER RANKINGS]

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Wizards vs. Clippers: TV, live stream and radio info, things to watch

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USA Today Sports

Wizards vs. Clippers: TV, live stream and radio info, things to watch

John Wall, Bradley Beal, Otto Porter and the Washington Wizards battle DeAndre Jordan, Lou Williams, Danilo Gallinari and the L.A. Clippers on Friday night.

Here is all you need to know: TV, live stream and radio info, tip-off time, plus three things to watch…

WASHINGTON WIZARDS VS. LOS ANGELES CLIPPERS

Where: Capital One Arena
Tip-off: 7 p.m.
TV: NBC Sports Washington (coverage begins at 6 p.m.)
Live stream: NBCSportsWashington.com
Online with no cable TV: fuboTV (try for free)
Radio: 1500 AM

Three things to watch...

Will Morris or Mahinmi play?

The Wizards now have John Wall back and that should certainly help them against the Clippers, but two of their big men are currently dealing with injuries. Ian Mahinmi has a right knee strain and has missed two straight games. He had an MRI that came back clean and is considered day-to-day.

Markieff Morris is also day-to-day, though it's unclear exactly what his injury is. He was listed as out due to right hip soreness on Wednesday night, the first we had heard of that injury. Then, after the game, head coach Scott Brooks mentioned his left ankle and his groin. Basically, Morris is banged up and the fact he isn't 100 percent probably helps explain why he's been playing so poorly in recent games. We'll see if he can give it a go on Friday.

[PODCAST: MORRIS ON WHY THE WIZARDS ARE A TOUGH TEAM]

Payback time

The Wizards see the Clippers less than a week after suffering one of their worst losses of the season to them in L.A. This gives the Wizards an opportunity to right a wrong and get even. The Wizards led by as much as 13 points before L.A. clawed back and won by one point in game that included a bizarre ending where the clock operator started early on the Wizards' final play.

Beyond the ending, several things stood out about that game. Morris (two points, one rebound) and Kelly Oubre, Jr. (zero points, one rebound) had their worst games of the season. Lou Williams (35 points) was unstoppable. And both Austin Rivers (16 points) and Williams hit big shots down the stretch. This time, though, the Wizards have Wall and he will definitely make a difference. Rivers is also out due to a concussion.

[RELATED: BRADLEY BEAL ON THE ART OF GETTING FOULED]

Beal's shooting

The return of Wall should help everyone in the Wizards' starting lineup get open looks and improve their efficiency. He's a master at setting teammates up for the shots they want. Bradley Beal, for one, could use some help getting out of a recent shooting funk.

Though Beal is averaging 23.7 points in his last three games, two of them losses, he's shooting just 36.8 percent, well below his season average of 45.3. Beal has not been himself from three-point range in general this season. He's hitting just 35.8 percent, a far cry from his 39.5 career clip. If anyone can help, it's Wall who often finds Beal wide open off screens and especially on the fastbreak.

[RELATED: LATEST NBA POWER RANKINGS]