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AI’s getting better; Sheed’s getting worse

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I've got a pair of articles of note on FanHouse, including something on Allen Iverson's improving defense ...

"I think it's night and day since he first got here," Michael Curry said before Friday's game. "Defensively he's taking the challenge. He knows that we expect him to give maximum effort on defense. We don't want him worrying about his fouls. You go out there and play hard defensively."

... and the real benefit to abandoning smallball -- getting Rasheed Wallace some help:

Is Wallace's age catching up with him? That's part of it; at 34 years old, he can't do all the same things he could do even a few years ago, let alone shoulder the load as the only big man on the court.

"You can watch him anytime, he can't by himself carry the paint," Curry said before Friday's game. "So a lot of times when we were small, especially if teams were in traps and he would have to come and protect the paint and get back to the other big, he can't do that anymore over a long stretch of the game. So having that other big on the floor really helps.