Home of Basketball Fri, 27 Feb 2015 22:40:02 +0000 en-GB hourly 1 Daily Gossip, Friday 27/2/15 Fri, 27 Feb 2015 19:38:53 +0000 Richard Hamilton played in the NBA for 14 seasons, and in that time, he memorably won the 2004 championship with a resounding 4-1 Finals win over the Los Angeles Lakers.


The former Detroit Pistons and Chicago Bulls man has had his time, but now Richard “Rip” Hamilton is stepping away from the court.

That doesn’t mean though that he will be gone for good.


First of all, a little known fact about rapper and actor Common: he was a ball boy during Michael Jordan’s rookie season with the Chicago Bulls.

Common was a guest on “Jimmy Kimmel Live” on Thursday, where he shared a great story about his time as a ball boy

According to Common, MJ once playfully asked him to forge his autograph for an eager young Bulls fan, and things didn’t turn out so well for either party.


Toronto Raptors guards DeMar DeRozan and Kyle Lowry are, if nothing else, brutally honest about how they’re playing at the moment.

The backcourt duo has shot around 36 percent this month, and the Raptors have stumbled to a 4-5 record in February.

DeRozan has put up 16.6 points a game in January, and improved slightly to 17.4 in February.

Via Toronto Sun:

Asked to describe his game at the moment, Lowry had a quick response: “Me? I’m trash,” Lowry told reporters. “I’m trying to figure it out right now, to be honest with you. I don’t know (how to fix it), that’s why I’m in here, working hard and trying to figure out what to do to get myself back on track.”“Right next to the trash can (that Lowry’s) is. Both trash,” DeRozan said, matter-of-factly as he signed merchandise following his media scrum.

“I don’t know what it may be, find a rhythm (after missing so much time due to injury), whatever it may be, but it happens,” DeRozan said. “You really realize who you are when you hit adversity and how you get through it. That’s all it is, it’s just we’re both not playing as we expect ourselves to play, especially with the hard work that we put in. We understand that we’re going to stick with it and aren’t going to hold our heads. Once it turns around, I think it’s going to be a scary sight. […] It’s just been difficult, with me personally, coming back from injury, not really having the amount of practice because we have back-to-backs, days off, whatever it may be, but at the same time we’ve got to get smart, try to rest and get treatment as much as possible. I understand that was going to be the tough part of it. The more games I play, the more comfortable I feel and get out of this little slump or whatever you call it. It’s going to be better in the long run.”


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Maccabi edge away from Panathinaikos, Euroleague Top 16 round up Fri, 27 Feb 2015 08:51:50 +0000 Maccabi Electra Tel Aviv defeated Panathinaikos 73-70 at home as they improve to 6-2 in Group E of the Euroleague Top 16.

In what was a rematch of the 2011 championship game, both teams came out the blocks quickly, with the hosts seizing the moment early in the second quarter to take a double digit lead.

Panathinaikos would later on find a way to claw themselves back but Maccabi held firm and free throws from Jeremy Pargo helped ice the game.

“It was a very important home win,” said Maccabi coach Guy Goodes. “It was a difficult and aggressive game and it wasn’t the most beautiful game to the eye. In the first half we managed to keep Panathinaikos to 30 points and in the second half we were able to stop some of their three-point attempts.

“Before the game our aim was to win. It is not easy to come and win after playing in the cup final [on Sunday] and bring extra energy. But the guys really came out and fought. We are always aiming to collect wins, and here we collected an important win on the way to our main goal and I am happy for everyone.”

Pargo led Maccabi with 16 points with Panathinaikos’ main threat coming in the form of Vlantimir Giankovits, who also hit 16. The Greens drop to  5-3 after this loss.

Nearer the bottom of Group E, Zalgiris’ hopes of a quarter-final place were slightly lifted after they beat Galatasaray 72-59 in Kaunas.

The Turkish side, without main scoring option Carlos Arroyo for two weeks due to injury looked lost and struggled to put points on the board. The hosts on the other hand were relentless in their approach and took a 22-8 lead after one and never looked back.

“I am happy that our guys, after three games this weekend in the Lithuanian Cup, were fresh tonight and very concentrated,” Zalgiris coach Gntaras Krapikas said. “We played an amazing two first quarters.

“Our offence and defence were really good. We got a bit stuck later on, but it could be expected. We managed to win without big stress and I want to thank the players for that. They executed everything very well.”

Paulius Jankunas led Zalgiris with 12 points as leading scorer James Anderson was held to only 9 points – but in truth – there was no danger here as the newly crowned Lithuanian Cup champions go to 3-5, while Galatasaray drop down to 2-6. Sinan Guler had 16 in defeat.

Real Madrid stay top of Group E following a convincing 85-61 win over Red Star in the Spanish capital.

The Liga Endesa side, who won the Copa del Rey last weekend move to 7-1 in the pool and are all but guaranteed a spot in the quarter-finals. Red Star realistically need to win all their remaining games to stand any hope of qualification but they look certain to be eliminated at 1-7.

Jaycee Carroll paced the winners with 17 points. Rudy Fernandez added 15, while Sergio Rodriguez had 13 for Madrid. Boban Marjanovic led Zvezda with 21 points and 13 rebounds.

In Group F, EA7 Milano secured a priceless 85-76 win over Nizhny Novgorod in Russia to slightly help aid their chances of qualification to the quarter-finals.

While MarShon Brooks helped seal the win late in the fourth quarter, Samardo Samuels dominated for the winners with 36 points and 9 rebounds, drawing up an index rating of +47, the third best in Top 16 history.

“We’ve been up and down,” Samuels said. “We just lost a tough one in Italy in the Italian Cup. The atmosphere’s been a little bit weird. It was important for us to put the past behind us and move forward.

“I just wanted to play hard for my team. We’ve been through a lot of ups and downs. We’re going to tough it out.”

Milano moved to 2-6, while Nizhny, led by Taylor Rochestie’s 21 dropped to the same record.

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Daily Gossip, Thursday 26/2/15 Thu, 26 Feb 2015 20:08:06 +0000 Recently waived Milwaukee Bucks big man Larry Sanders has answered several questions as to why he has refused a new deal and momentarily quit the sport all-together.


Larry Sanders penned a piece for the Player’s Tribune regarding his recent activity and why he left basketball.

Sanders, waived by the Milwaukee Bucks has been battling anxiety and depression and feels that basketball should take a back seat at the moment.


Recently waived center Larry Sanders said he has received treatment for anxiety and depression.

Sanders, who was waived by the Milwaukee Bucks on Saturday night, which officially completed his buyout, said in a piece he wrote for The Players’ Tribune that he sought treatment.

“I know I disappeared for a while, people wondering where I was. I actually entered into Rogers Memorial Hospital, and it was a program for anxiety and depression, mood disorders,” he said. “It taught me a lot about myself. It taught me about what’s important and where I would want to devote my time and energy.”

Sanders, who was suspended for five games on April 4 for testing positive for marijuana, said he began using the drug to treat his anxiety symptoms.

“Coming to the league, they drop this large amount of money out of nowhere. People automatically change around you,” he said. “… There’s no one really trying to guide, teach you what you should do and what you shouldn’t do. So you get lost, you get your money stolen.”

Sanders appeared in 27 games for Milwaukee this season, averaging 7.3 points, 6.1 rebounds and 1.4 blocks in 21.7 minutes of action per game.

To read Larry Sanders interview on the Player’s Tribune, click here.


Michael Beasley took China by storm, he won MVP honours at the All-Star Game by exploding for 59 points and his time in the far east saw him average 27 points and 10 rebounds.

But he is back with the Miami Heat after inking a 10-deal deal as the franchise looks to fill the massive kid left by Chris Bosh, who is out for the season.

Via AP:

Beasley’s addition comes less than a week after the Heat learned they would lose All-Star forward Chris Bosh for the remainder of the season because of blood clots on one of his lungs. Miami (25-31) entered Thursday in the No. 7 spot in the Eastern Conference standings.

Beasley spent this season in China, putting up monster numbers, including a 59-point performance in his league’s All-Star game. He has been working out in Miami for several days, even practicing in the team facility — a courtesy that the team extended to him, and a sign that yet another Beasley reunion could be looming.

And now it’s official, with Beasley wearing a team T-shirt as he signed his contract Thursday. He is in New Orleans and expected to be available when the Heat visit the Pelicans on Friday night.


Prior to the Los Angeles Lakers’ 100-97 road win Wednesday night against the Utah Jazz, coach Byron Scott revealed to the press that he doesn’t much care for your fancy analytics.

Scott says his assistants bring up the numbers in meetings, but he just ignores them.

Via OC Register:

“I think we’ve got a few guys who believe in it,” Scott said. “I’m not one of them.” […] “I listen to them and all that stuff and take it into consideration,” he said, “but I’m still just old school.”General Manager Mitch Kupchak defended the Lakers’ use of analytics on ESPN 710 AM, the Lakers flagship radio station, pointing to the full-time employees who come through SportVU camera data. […] “We’ve actually had an analytic department that goes beyond traditional analysis now for several years,” Kupchak said. Kupchak described advanced metrics as “an asset to the coaches,” although it’s one Scott doesn’t care to use. He said assistant coach Mark Madsen keeps him up to speed on what analytics say.

Asked if they had influenced any major coaching decisions this year, he wasted no time considering his answer. […] “No,” he said.


The recently retired Shane Battier disagrees..

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Lithuania’s summer already planned Thu, 26 Feb 2015 12:25:39 +0000 EuroBasket 2013 silver medalists, Lithuania, have already planned their summer. The team is set to play 10 warm-up games before moving to Riga for group stage of EuroBasket 2015.

The training camp will start on July 20, a couple of weeks later than last year, giving players more time for resting.

Head coach Jonas Kazlauskas revealed that he wanted to test his team against Spain and reigning European champions France during preparation period but an agreement couldn’t be reached with either side.

France has tournament on home soil so they weren’t interested in travelling abroad for a warm-up game while Spain are yet to appoint a head coach.

Kazlauskas told to the press that he has the list of potential candidates on his mind but decided to keep the announcement for another time.

EuroBasket 2015 will take place from Septermber 5 to 20. For the first time in history the tournament will be hosted in 4 countries – Croatia, France, Germany and Latvia with the final stage taking place in Lille, France.

Lithuania’s warm-up games:

July 29 – Lithuania – Australia in (Klaipeda, Lithuania)

July 31 – Lithuania – Australia in (Siauliai, Lithuania)

August 8 – Lithuania – Finland in (Alytus, Lithuania)

August 12 – Lithuania – Austria in (Kedainiai, Lithuania)

August 17 – 19 – Huawei Cup 2015 (Kaunas, Lithuania)

August 17 – Lithuania – Turkey

August 18 – Lithuania – FYROM

August 19 – Lithuania – Croatia

August 27 – 29 Acropolis – Eurobank Tournament (Athens, Greece)

August 27 – Lithuania – Turkey

August 28 – Lithuania – Netherlands

August 29 – Lithuania – Greece

Lithuania will play face Ukraine, Latvia, Belgium, Estonia and Czech Republic in Group D.

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Eurochallenge quarter-final line-up set Thu, 26 Feb 2015 08:36:40 +0000 By FIBA Europe

The EuroChallenge Quarter-Final Play-Off pairings have been decided following the conclusion of the Last 16 on Tuesday.

Fraport Skyliners, Avtodor Saratov, Trabzonspor Medical Park and EuroChallenge debutants Energia Tg-Jiu had secured their berths prior to the final game day, leaving four more spots up for grabs.

In Group I, Enel Basket Brindisi came from behind to defeat their hosts Energia Tg-Jiu 78-67 and follow the Romanian team into the play-offs as the second-placed team from the group. Brindisi enjoyed the edge over BC Astana, who equally finished on a 3-3 record, but had lost the head-to-head with the Italians.

Group J saw both French teams, JSF Nanterre and Le Mans, win their respective games on Tuesday to advance to the next stage. While Nanterre eased past Güssing Knights, 82-62, Le Mans had to sweat it out against Usak Sportif before eventually prevailing 82-79.

With both teams already qualified, Fraport Skyliners and Avtodor Saratov battled it out for top spot in Group K, with the Frankfurt side claiming a dramatic double-overtime win, 112-103.

In Group L, Enisey Krasnoyarsk took second spot behind Trabzonspor despite an 86-85 loss to visiting PO Antwerp Giants. The Belgians finished group play on a 3-3 record, like Enisey, but would have needed a win by 16 points or more to claim the head-to-head comparison with their Russian rivals.

The Quarter-Final Play-Off pairings are as follows:

Energia Tg-Jiu vs. Le Mans Sarthe Basket
JSF Nanterre vs. Enel Basket Brindisi
Fraport Skyliners vs. BC Enisey Krasnoyarsk
Trabzonspor Medical Park vs. Avtodor Saratov

The format of the Quarter-Final Play-Offs is a best-of-three series with the higher ranked team hosting the first game, and a third game if required. The games will take place on 10 and 12 March, with the third game, if necessary, scheduled for 17 March.

A decision about the venue of the Final Four, which is scheduled to take place from 24-26 April, will be announced following the conclusion of the Quarter-Final Play-Offs.

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Gudaitis will enter NBA Draft 2015 Thu, 26 Feb 2015 08:10:24 +0000

Arturas Gudaitis is prepared to test his chances at this year’s NBA Draft with several NBA scouts keeping an eye on his situation.

Basketball agent Tadas Bulotas told to TV channel Sport 1 that Gudaitis is seen by NBA teams.

“NBA scouts are watching and asking us as well as Zalgiris [about him]”, said Bulotas.

In his second Euroleague season 21-year-old Lithuanian center is averaging 6.3 points and 4.1 rebounds.

Despite starting relatively late to play basketball, Gudaitis has been making quick progress. Last summer he earned a call up to the training camp of Lithuanian national team.

According to Draft Express, Gudaitis could be selected by the Los Angeles Lakers as 53rd pick overall.

Another Lithuanian player who could leave Europe for the NBA is Mantas Kalnietis. As reported by last June, he’s attracting interest of several NBA clubs.

New York Knicks, Los Angeles Lakers and Indiana Pacers are among the interested parties with the Pacers being the most realistic destination for Kalnietis, according to Bulotas.

Kalnietis seriously injured his shoulder in the last warm up game with Lithuanian national team and was forced to miss the first half of season. He has returned to the court just recently.

Unicaja Malaga forward Mindaugas Kuzminskas could also make a move overseas. However, he would have to prove himself in the Summer League and training camps of individual teams.

The fact that Unicaja has the right to keep Kuzminskas for another season is not helping a potential move either.

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Daily Gossip, Wednesday 25/2/15 Wed, 25 Feb 2015 20:56:58 +0000 If you’re having a bad day, then please spare a thought for Derrick Rose.


Chicago Bulls’ Derrick Rose just can not catch a break at all.

After a successful FIBA World Cup last summer and a solid NBA beginning, Rose is out again after a knee injury revealed a torn meniscus in his right knee this time.


Chicago Bulls guard Derrick Rose has a torn meniscus in his right knee and will undergo surgery, the team said Tuesday.

Rose reported earlier in the day with right knee pain. An exam and subsequent MRI confirmed the tear.

A timetable for Rose’s return will be determined once he has surgery, the team said.

Via New York Times:

Dr. Robert Marx, an orthopedic surgeon at the Hospital for Special Surgery, said the recovery time could be as short as a few weeks if part of the meniscus tissue is removed. Recovery when the meniscus is repaired with sutures — the procedure Rose underwent last season — could take up to six months.

Marx, who has not examined Rose, emphasized that such timetables vary from case to case, depending on a multitude of factors.

In regards to long-term health, repairing the meniscus — and in general, preserving as much of the tissue as possible — is preferable to removing some or all of it.

“If you remove a lot of the meniscus, over time the chance of arthritis goes up,” Marx said.

Dr. James Gladstone, co-chief of sports medicine at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, said medical research suggested that a repaired meniscus has up to a 30 percent chance of getting torn a second time. It happens particularly within the first two years of the initial procedure, said Gladstone, who did not have the exact details of Rose’s diagnosis.

His return to Minnesota has been well anticipated, and Kevin Garnett’s first press conference since being re-introduced to the Timberwolves doesn’t look like it will disappoint.

Via Pioneer Press:

Rookie Andrew Wiggins said Garnett clocked in around 9:30 a.m. at Target Center. Anthony Bennett thought he was the first in the weight room before 11 a.m. until he walked in and realized Garnett already was halfway through his workout. […] “That says a lot right there,” Bennett said. “I just went up and introduced myself, and we kind of talked a little. He said he’s basically like an older brother. He’s just going to teach us along the way.”During Tuesday’s early afternoon practice, Garnett twice yelled at burly center Nikola Pekovic to get back on defense. […] “I think nobody in (Pekovic’s) career yell at him to run back on defense, so that’s good,” Ricky Rubio said. “Everybody listens, and everybody respects him. He’s doing everything it takes to get better.”

With Garnett’s help, Rubio said he can become a more vocal point guard. […] “I don’t know how to do it yet. I’m too nice, so I hope he teach me that bad side,” Rubio said. “That (will) help team to improve.”


Kobe Bryant seethed in silent rage when watching his teammates celebrate a meaningless victory against the Boston Celtics last Sunday, and Los Angeles Lakers head coach Byron Scott ripped them for their antics.

Scott said it was unprofessional of a (14-41) squad to act in such a way.

According to Scott, he was made aware of the silly celebration — led by Nick Young, Jordan Hill and Carlos Boozer — only once Kobe’s interview on “Jimmy Kimmel Live” went viral Monday.

Per the OC Register:

Coach Byron Scott did, though, calling the celebration “very disappointing” and that Bryant’s reaction mirrored his own. […] “I was shaking my head because I couldn’t believe it,” Scott said Tuesday.“That’s not us as Lakers. That’s not how we act,” said Scott, who played 11 seasons for the Lakers. “I thought it showed a lack of professionalism. This organization has always been professional in what we do. We’re very proud of that Lakers emblem on our shirt and that purple and gold that we wear.”

Scott said he told the team the same thing before Tuesday’s practice and the players agreed that it was “distasteful.” […] “It was very important to address the team about it and get that issue solved,” said Scott, adding that there wouldn’t be any disciplinary action taken. “I think just the fact that everyone is making a real big deal out of it (is enough),” he said.

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Maccabi brings in veteran Forte Wed, 25 Feb 2015 19:01:11 +0000 Reigning Turkish Airlines Euroleague champion Maccabi Electra Tel Aviv added depth to its roster when it registered guard Joseph Forte, who has been training with the team since last season.

Forte (33 years old, 1.91 meters) last played for Petrochimi Bandar Imam Harbour of Iran, where he averaged 9 points and 3 rebounds in two games in 2012.

Forte has also played for Carmatic Pistoia, Edimes Pavia, Snaidero Udine, Fortitudo Bologna and Montepaschi Siena of Italy, Unics Kazan of Russia, Apollon Patras of Greece, Asheville of the D-League, as well as for Seattle and Boston of the NBA. He helped Asheville win the D-League title in 2005 and lifted the Italian League trophy with Montepaschi in 2007.


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Frank Elegar targeted by EA7 Emporio Armani Wed, 25 Feb 2015 12:21:06 +0000 EA7 Emporio Armani are looking to bolster its frontcourt ahead of the second round of Euroleague Top 16 by adding one more player.

It is reported that Frank Elegar, who plays for Estonian side Kalev/Cramo, is wanted by the club and could make a move to Italy right before the Euroleague’s transfer deadline.

The 28-year-old U.S. Virgin Islander joined Kalev in 2012 after brief stints all over Europe. He has played in Germany, France, Greece and Turkey before moving to Estonia.

Known for his athleticism Elegar is averaging 14.9 points and 11.3 rebounds per game in VTB United League.

Kalev sits atop of the Estonian league and is 10th in VTB United League. The team has also been eliminated in the first round of Baltic Basketball League playoffs.

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Daily Gossip, Tuesday 24/2/15 Tue, 24 Feb 2015 21:37:19 +0000 Kobe Bryant revealed a lot in his latest sit down interview with Bill Simmons and Jalen Rose on Grantland, including an interesting trade offer.


Los Angeles Lakers’ Kobe Bryant was the subject of an apparent trade offer believed to agreed with the Detroit Pistons, reportedly with Richard Hamilton, Tayshaun Prince, Amir Johnson and a first-round pick going to Los Angeles.

For snippets of the Kobe Bryant interview on Grantland, click here.




Boston Celtics’ newest acquisition Isaiah Thomas had his “revenge” against his old side the Phoenix Suns

In the key moments of the game against Phoenix, Thomas hit a decisive three-pointer plus the foul. Then he stared down the Suns bench.


In the toilet.

Via Twin Cities:

Even though his game may have changed, his attitude remains 24/7.

“As one of our veteran guys told our young guys yesterday, ‘Hey, listen, when KG walks in the locker room your phones better be tucked away, because if they’re not, they’re going to get thrown in the toilet on game night,’ ” Saunders noted.


“He changed their culture,” Saunders said of Garnett’s time with the Boston Celtics. “Doc (Rivers) told me that. They had veteran players and everything else, but when he went in the locker room, the music was cut off and everything.”

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