by Holly MacKenzie/@stackmack

I feel like it’s been a million days since our last Post Up. Derek Fisher has been annihilated by Corey Brewer. Chris Douglas-Roberts underwent an MRI on his knee that was negative and has a mild sprain. Deron Williams –and undrafted rookie Wesley Matthews– took down the Lakers in Utah, revenge for that awful six-point fourth quarter collaspe they had in LA last week. Kobe Bryant broke a finger, played –badly– through the flu and Shane Battier proved once again that he is a media member’s best friend.

Hmm. Feels like I’m still trying to catch up.

Oh yeah. The Knicks signed Jonathan Bender. Yes, Jonathan Bender.

I was at the Raptors game against the Rockets yesterday afternoon when I was looking up the Knicks for some reason or another, I can’t remember why now, but the headline popped up and the scout sitting beside me said, “Bender? Seriously, Donnie?” incredulously. I felt happy. Happy for Bender and it feels kind of fitting that Walsh is giving him another chance, after their time together in Indiana.

Now, about Battier. I wish every NBA team had an “essential-Battier” rule where they needed to provide media with a player to speak with who is that patient and polite. He’s awesome. Isn’t any other way to say it.

44/7/6 and four steals for LeBron in a victory against the Thunder. That guy’s pretty great, isn’t he? It feels so weird to me how LeBron was “the” guy and now it seems like a lot of people have jumped off of the wagon and no longer like/root for him. I don’t like the dancing, but I do genuinely enjoy who LeBron seems to be and more importantly, I could watch him play basketball forever and ever. Even if you don’t like him, I can’t see how you can fault the guy for his play.

And, Mo Williams with that crazy heave from 44-feet? I will never, ever get tired of watching the end of practice and shootaround sessions where guys somehow always end up at halfcourt (or further), tossing up shots. Something wonderful about watching guys sticking around the gym, turning everything into a competition. Even silly halfcourt shots.

Okay. I’m out for now. I know I’ve got lots of weekend action to catch up on. I’ve also got two pieces to finish today and another player to track down and get interviewed. Busy Mondays. Love them. Raptors being out of town and no practice for me. Don’t love that.

Speaking of strong play, Rudy Gay had a career-high 41 points last night as the Grizzlies demolished the Heat in Miami. Imagine, Memphis defeating Miami, 118-90. Didn’t see that happening. Of course, the Heat take this loss on their home floor as the Raptors are their next opponent on Tuesday night. Classic. They’ll probably come out strong and smoke Toronto. I’m hoping not, but we shall see.

Watching Tracy McGrady sit on the bench in his dress clothes on Sunday with the Rockets in town was odd. Here is the highest paid player in the league this season and his team would prefer for him to remain inactive for the time being. Strange. I don’t think there’s anyway he could possibly end up starting in the All-Star game. If the fans don’t step in and change this, I think the league has to, don’t they?

Did you all see Ariza’s elbow swing at DeRozan? I’ve seen and heard enough of it to last a lifetime, but I loved how DeRozan just wanted to tell me how he was “kinda upset” after Ariza left the Lakers for Houston this summer. It’s got to be weird to go from rooting for your hometown team your entire life to suddenly being in the league and playing against that franchise and it’s players. It’s fun watching DeRozan’s excitement as he plays some of his favorite players and guys he looked up to.

Again, it’s why I love rookies.

Okay. Hawks are rolling,