Much the way the league has been through stages of trying to find The Next Larry Bird, The Next Magic or the Next Magic Jordan, there is somewhat less urgency in trying to identify The Next Danny Fortson. From The Northwest Herald’s David Brown.

The NBA issued a $5,000 fine and a flagrant foul to Chicago F Andres Nocioni (above) for making “unnecessary and excessive contact with” Atlanta’s Josh Childress during the Bulls’ win Wednesday.

Childress, who reacted to Nocioni by swinging and missing with a forearm punch at Nocioni’s head, was suspended two games without pay.

Nocioni has been called for three flagrant fouls this season, and often seems entangled physically and mentally with opponents.

Skiles compared opponents’ view of Nocioni to that of Bill Laimbeer and Dennis Rodman, two players who were thought to step over the line of physical and aggressive play.

“They tend to get on people’s nerves,” said Skiles, a contemporary of Laimbeer and Rodman. “There are just certain guys that, for whatever reason … I just know that my guy isn’t [dirty]. He plays hard. He’s not afraid of contact, and I would argue that he even likes contact.”