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Early returns from holiday moves

In his first two weeks as a Maverick, Rajon Rondo is showing he's capable of making a big impact on D. AP Photo/Jim Cowsert

Between work parties and holiday gatherings, travel and time off, it can be tough to keep up with the NBA in late December. But the league itself never sleeps, which was reinforced this holiday season, with two major news items dropping on Christmas Eve before a full slate of games on Christmas Day.

In case you missed anything, let's take a look back at the biggest stories of the holiday period and their impact so far.

Dec. 15: Kings fire Mike Malone

After some initial confusion, it's become clear that Malone was fired despite Sacramento starting the season 11-13 on his watch, not because of it. The real issue inside the Kings' front office was frustration with Malone's defensive-minded, isolation-heavy style of play. Sacramento has indeed played faster since Tyrone Corbin took over as head coach (averaging 99.4 possessions per 48 minutes, up from 95.7, per NBA.com/Stats), but it hasn't resulted in much offensive improvement; the team was averaging a 103.1 offensive rating and has scored 103.9 points per 100 possessions under Corbin.