Boston Celtics point guard Rajon Rondo went right at Brooklyn Nets forward Kris Humphries after a foul on Kevin Garnett with 29 seconds left in the first half of Wednesday night’s game. Rondo, Humphries and interloping Nets forward Gerald Wallace were ejected.
NBA free agency may have only started at 12:01 Sunday morning not surprisingly Orlando Magic center Dwight Howard was a hot topic of conversation as his often absurd relationship with the team took yet another turn.
The newest update comes from ESPN’s Chris Broussard, who reported that Howard informed new Magic general manager Rob Hennigan that he wants to be traded to the Brooklyn Nets. That Howard is eying Brooklyn as his destination his hardly new, since he was doing the same before the 2011-12 season began.
What makes Broussard’s report noteworthy is that it reveals that Howard has discussed his “feelings of being blackmailed” by the Magic with those around him and the Players Association and is considering making a legal complaint. Howard decided to stick with Orlando through the 2012-13 season back in March, waiving his early termination option in his contract and postponing free agency for one more summer.
As has been the case throughout the Dwightmare in Orlando, it still doesn’t appear that Brooklyn has enough assets to pull off a trade for Howard. Perhaps aware that Howard is a longshot, the Nets are already exploring a deal with Atlanta Hawks for Joe Johnson. The Nets have also agreed to a four-year deal worth $40 million with Gerald Wallace.
If the Howard-to-the-Nets deal never comes to be then the Los Angeles Lakers might be interested in the All-Star pivot. According to Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports, the Lakers and Magic have had “preliminary contact” about a potential deal for Howard.
It wasn’t too long ago that former Magic coach Stan Van Gundy admitted to reporters that Howard had asked for him to be fired throughout the season. More than a month later, Van Gundy was fired.
After a season in which the team wrapped up a 7-59 record, setting an NBA mark for the worst losing percentage in history, the Charlotte Bobcats did the expected and announced that head coach Paul Silas would not be brought back for another season.
Silas was brought in last year to replace coach Larry Brown, and immediately got his Bobcats to play better. Charlotte won six of its first eight games under Silas, but eventually leveled off and wound up dealing star forward Gerald Wallace to Portland Trail Blazersat the trading deadline. The Bobcats also traded guard Stephen Jackson before the season, and with a series of injuries weakening an already thin roster, Silas’s club was set up for its epic failure.
“I would like to personally thank Paul for everything he has done for this team under some pretty unique circumstances,” Rod Higgins, Bobcats president of basketball operations, said in a statement. “His basketball experience as a coach and a player speak for themselves. We have been fortunate to have someone of his character associated with this franchise and we hope he will continue to be a valuable resource to us in the future.”
Higgins said the team would immediately begin its coaching search. Nate McMillan, who played at North Carolina State, is the likely top target, but McMillan is expected to be a top candidate for several other jobs, too.
Silas has coached in the NBA for 11 seasons and compiled a record of 377-531 with the Los Angeles Clippers, Charlotte Hornets, Cleveland Cavaliers and Bobcats.
The former Portland Trail Blazers general manager Rich Cho has been hired by the Charlotte Bobcats to fill the same role. The team said that former general manager Rod Higgins was being promoted to president of basketball operations. Cho, 45, is well know for his use of statistical analysis to make decisions was fired by Trail Blazers owner Paul Allen in late May after less than a year as general manager.
“He has a unique set of skills that I don’t possess,” Higgins said. “His analytical mind is a big plus for us. His legal background (Cho also is a lawyer) is a big plus for us. I’m a traditional basketball guy, and Rich is a very untraditional addition to our operation here.”
Higgins said he lobbied team owner Michael Jordan to bring in Cho soon after the Blazers fired him.
Cho will try to improve a Bobcats roster he helped shape last February when he traded Dante Cunningham, Joel Przybilla, Sean Marks and two first round draft picks to Charlotte for Gerald Wallace.
The FBI presented Portland Trail Blazers forward Gerald Wallace, who really wants to be an FBI agent, with a hat, sweatshirt and a honorary badge at a recent practice. When “Crash” got to Portland he mentioned he’d like to join the FBI when he gets done in the NBA. So, special agent in charge Art Balizan, assistant special agent in charge Alan Peters, public affairs specialist Beth Anne Steele and retired Portland FBI agents Bob Hanis and Dick Bittner showed up and encouraged the Alabama native to keep the bureau in mind.
To qualify as a special agent, an applicant must be a U.S. citizen, between 23 and 37 years old, have a four-year college degree and at least three years of professional work experience. That means “Crash” would have to return to school as he left after only one year at the University of Alabama.
Shaquille O’Neal is impressed.
Gerald Wallace apparently was not happy with getting traded to the Portland Trail Blazers before the deadline and still isn’t over it. According to the Charlotte Observer, Wallace said he feels “betrayed” by the team he spent the last six and a half seasons with.
“Basically, you feel betrayed by somebody you love. I totally didn’t see it coming,” Wallace said. “I’d been there seven long years and then you feel like you’re not wanted anymore. That’s a bad situation to be in, especially for me, who committed so much to the organization.”
The Jordan Brand is more than just kicks these days as Michael Jordan is trying to take care of you off the court as well and is introducing the new Jordan Jumbo Jumpman Polo collection. Denver Nuggets Carmelo Anthony, New Orleans Hornets Chris Paul, Miami Heat Dwyane Wade, Charlotte Bobcats Gerald Wallace, Houston Rockets Kevin Martin, Atlanta Hawks Mike Bibby, and Detroit Pistons Richard Hamilton demonstrate in this seven color combos the Jordan Jumbo Jumpman Polo are available in. In finer apparel stores now.
Short on players for practice the Charlotte Bobcats found an extra in owner Michael Jordan. The Hall of Famer suited up for Thursday’s workout, participating in a full-court scrimmage and showing a few of the old moves that helped make him a six-time NBA champion.
“He’s Mike. He’s been kicking our (butts). He still has it,” forward Gerald Wallace said. “He doesn’t have this quickness, but he can score, he’s a shooter. The last thing to ever go is your jump shot and he has that.”
Jordan, who turns 48 next week, has been spending more time at practices and shootarounds, getting on the floor and doing some teaching. Thursday’s practice was his most involved yet.
“He’s holding these guys accountable and it’s great. I love him out here,” coach Paul Silas said. “He’s teaching them how to protect the basketball, how to play hard on defense, how to talk. It’s a good thing. The guys work a little bit harder when he’s out here and rightly so because he’s working hard. You’re not going to let him do a job on you if you’ve got any pride.”
The Bobcats are 22-30 and have climbed back to just a game behind the Indiana Pacers for the final postseason spot in the Eastern Conference.
The NBA is set to announce the All-Star reserves during tonight’s TNT games but Yahoo! Sports Adrian Wojnarowski got a hold of a leaked list of the 2010 NBA All-Star reserves
Eastern Conference Reserves:
Rajon Rondo – Boston Celtics
Derrick Rose – Chicago Bulls
Paul Pierce – Boston Celtics
Chris Bosh – Toronto Raptors
Gerald Wallace – Charlotte Bobcats
Joe Johnson – Atlanta Hawks
Al Horford – Atlanta Hawks
Western Conference Reserves:
Deron Williams – Utah Jazz
Chris Paul – New Orleans Hornets
Pau Gasol – Los Angeles Lakers
Kevin Durant – Oklahoma City Thunder
Dirk Nowitzki – Dallas Mavericks
Zach Randolph – Memphis Grizzlies
Brandon Roy – Portland Blazers
It will be the All-Star debuts for seven players: Williams of Utah, Chicago’s Rose, Boston’s Rondo, Charlotte’s Wallace, Memphis Randolph, Atlanta’s Horford and Oklahoma City’s Durant.
Among the notable candidates left off the team are the Los Angeles Clippers Chris Kaman, New York Knicks David Lee and Denver Nuggets Chauncey Billups.
The NBA has announced it’s participants for its Slam Dunk contest on February 13, held during All-Star weekend this year at Jerry World’s. One notable absence is that of Cleveland Cavaliers LeBron James.
Those who will participate are Los Angeles Lakers guard Shannon Brown, New York Knicks guard Nate Robinson and Charlotte Bobcats forward Gerald Wallace. A fourth player will be determined through a “dunk-off” between Los Angeles Clippers guard Eric Gordon and Toronto Raptors forward DeMar DeRozan.
Robinson won the event last season and in 2006.
I care to see “TNT Legs” Brown win it but I’m going to put my money down on Wallace of Charlotte.
Gerald Wallace, you have been charged with the crime of Representin.
And the verdict is Guilty.