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It’s trade deadline day in the NBA.

ESNY Morning Shootaround logo

Tonight, the NFL will distribute their individual awards for the 2021 season. This afternoon, the NBA’s trade deadline arrives. And somewhere in between, MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred is going to update us on the state of their lockout.

Quiet Thursday, right?

Here’s what we’re watching tonight:

  • NBA: Nets @ Wizards — 7:30 PM ET
  • NBA: Knicks @ Warriors — 10 PM ET
  • NBA: Bucks @ Suns — 10 PM ET
  • NHL: Devils @ Blues — 7 PM ET
  • NHL: Lightning @ Avs — 9 PM ET
  • CBB: #3 Purdue @ Michigan — 9 PM ET

Harden wants out… but not really

How do you request a trade without requesting a trade? Have “a little birdie” talk to the biggest rumor mill on the internet and let him know to “feel free to share.” We’ll see if the Nets make a blockbuster happen on Thursday… we proposed a 3-team deal that could break the NBA.

Houston had a problem

Houston started Wednesday night ranked sixth in the country. They went to bed with a new loss on their record thanks to a stunning upset handed out by SMU. What a game!

Montreal Marty

After getting their butts kicked 7-1 by the Devils on Tuesday night, the Montreal Canadiens fired their head coach. This entire season has been an absolute gong show for the Habs, so a coaching change felt inevitable.

But… then they threw us a curveball… and named Martin St. Louis as their interim head coach. We did not see that coming!

Baseball? Maybe?

We’re still waiting for Major League Baseball to get their collective crap together and end this lockout. And, according to a number of reports including this from Jon Heyman, we won’t see another substantial conversation between the two sides until this weekend.

Commissioner Rob Manfred is supposed to speak with the media later today. We’ll see if he has anything new to share or if he’s just taking a few minutes on the day of the NBA trade deadline before the NFL Honors show tonight to bury his sport further below the headlines that matter.

Bitter Horizon?

Loyola (Chicago) announced they were leaving the Missouri Valley Conference, so the MVC pivoted to stay in the Chicago market and offered that vacant spot to the University of Illinois-Chicago.

UIC, which produced Curtis Granderson among other former professional athletes, accepted the offer and informed their current conference, the Horizon League, that they intend to leave at the end of the 2021-22 school year.

On Wednesday morning, citing bylaws, the Horizon League announced they were banning UIC athletes from competing in any/all postseason competition.

The university responded.

This could get ugly — and in a courtroom.

Tab has written about MLB, the NHL and the NFL for more than a decade for publications including The Fourth Period, Bleacher Report and La Vida Baseball. He is the author of two books about the Chicago Blackhawks and has been credentialed for the MLB All-Star Game and postseason and multiple Stanley Cup Finals. He is the co-host of the Line Drive Radio podcast.