Labels: pickup basketball
Players making aggressive gestures, such as air punches, anywhere on the court.Refs can also consider dropping the T-Bomb on players who "use body language to question or demonstrate displeasure" and "take the long path to the official" (that is, walking across the court to make their case). Just guessing here, but I bet laughing at calls is also off limits.
Demonstrative disagreement, such as when a player incredulously raises his hands, or smacks his own arm to demonstrate how he was fouled.
Running directly at an official to complain about a call.
Excessive inquiries about a call, even in a civilized tone.
While Morrison’s dominance at the college level can’t be questioned, many still doubt how his game will translate to the next level. Morrison has a certain amount of deceptive quickness to his game, but is he a good enough athlete to be a star in the NBA?Despite the many doubts, Michael Jordan -- in one of his first acts as Manager of Basketball Operations of the Charlotte Bobcats -- made Morrison the third overall selection in the 2006 NBA Draft...ahead of guys like Brandon Roy, Rudy Gay and Rajon Rondo, not to mention a scad of other servicable roleplayers (J.J. Redick, Ronnie Brewer, Boobie Gibson, Paul Milsap, etc.).
With how hard Morrison has to work to get shots at the college level, can he create offense against the Ron Artests and Bruce Bowens of the NBA? While the caliber of defender guarding Morrison has made little difference during his time at Gonzaga, it remains to be seen whether he has the footspeed or overall athleticism to succeed as an all-around scorer at the next level.
The other hole in Adam Morrison’s game can be easily observed on the defensive end. Morrison clearly reserves most of his energy for his scoring expoits, and tends to coast on defense most of the time. Gonzaga will often switch into zone defenses so teams can’t exploit him on that end.
While Morrison has solid defensive instincts when he is focused, it is generally perceived that the lack of footspeed will really hurt in one-on-one situations on the defensive end. Morrison may very well be able to create his own shot in the NBA, but it is hard to see him being able to stay in front of the freak athletes occupying the wing position in the NBA. It is likely that whichever team ends up drafting Morrison will have to come up with a defensive gameplan that covers for Morrison’s shortcomings on that end.
Lakers reserve guard Sasha Vujacic, a restricted free agent, is prepared to leave the team and accept an offer from a European team in the next few days if the Lakers don't make him an offer he deems fair, according to a source in the Vujacic camp who spoke only on the condition of anonymity.I loved it. Loved it, I tell you. Especially the "according to a source in the Vujacic camp who spoke only on the condition of anonymity" part. It may as well have said, "according to Sasha Vujacic, who is posing as a member of his make-believe camp and therefore needs to speak only on the condition of anonymity."
The source said Vujacic is seeking a multiyear deal from the Lakers averaging about $5 million a year. Vujacic was hoping for a six-year deal, but anticipated it could be a shorter contract.
Because the Lakers are over the luxury tax, they would be assessed an amount equal to any sum they spend over it.
Lakers General Manager Mitch Kupchak has been negotiating with Vujacic's agent, Rob Pelinka.
"We are very aware of the global market as it has changed over the years. It was our desire to bring Sasha and Ronny back. It continues to be our desire to bring Sasha back," Kupchak said Thursday after hearing of Vujacic's ultimatum. "However, with the ever-changing marketplace that Europe has become, a player, in order to cover his bases, can negotiate with his NBA team and, at the same time, have a plan that allows him to have the possibility of going overseas."
Lakers restricted free agent guard Sasha Vujacic has agreed to a three-year, $15 million contract after emerging last season as a key member of the Western Conference champions.Hey, sure, why not? Vujacic had been pesky on defense and a pretty reliable shooter on offense (45% from the field and 43 percent on threes). He had that good Finals game. And the fans loved Sasha. Even Kobe Bryant loved Sasha. Just ask...Sasha:
"We felt Sasha made great progress in this past year, and our coach showed great confidence in playing him the second half of the season," Lakers general manager Mitch Kupchak said Friday in confirming the agreement, first reported by the Riverside Press-Enterprise. "Assuming he continues to work as hard during the offseason as he has in the past, I don't see any reason that trend wouldn't continue."
The 24-year-old Vujacic averaged a career-high 8.8 points, 2.1 rebounds and 1.0 assists in 72 games this season, and 8.1 points 2.2 rebounds and 0.8 assists while playing in all 21 playoff games.
Vujacic drew national attention June 10, scoring a career playoff high 20 points including a crucial 3-pointer with a little under two minutes remaining in the Lakers' 87-81 victory over the Celtics in Game 3 of the NBA finals.
"They are my team. They brought me over from Europe and I feel at home in this organization and in LA. Everywhere I'd go, Lakers fans would say to me, 'Please re-sign, you have to come back Machine.' And that really gave me a warm feeling about it."Wow. With all that love, and the newfound riches, there was nothing holding Vujacic back from having the best season of his career. Nothing except the fact that he wasn't really all that good to begin with.
"It's always kind of been older brother, younger brother with Kobe and I. Kobe called me on the first day of free agency and said, 'I love you and we all need you. But whatever you decide, I'll stand by your decision.' Then he called me on the last day I was deciding and at the end of the conversation, we both said, 'Let's do it.'"
"I take a little umbrage to some of the things that came from people in our game who, all of a sudden, have become the moral conscious or moral authority on the decision of every team or some individual might make," Riley said Friday during a conference call with South Florida writers. "I know one thing: Our team will be ready. And I think that's the way we can answer all the critics."Mind you, during the 1984 NBA Finals, Riley referred to McHale and the Celtics as "thugs." He also gave Jackson the rasberries during the Knicks-Bulls rivalry. Ditto for Jeff Van Gundy during the Heat-Knicks rivalry. And we all know about how he stabbed Stan Van Gundy in the back in taking over Miami's coaching job a few years back. So I'm not sure why he's casting stones now. Neither does Van Gundy:
"Charles Barkley, to me, went way, way, way over the top taking these personal attacks. Calling these guys a bunch of punks is a personal attack," Riley said. "For him to say that is wrong."
"I thought that (what Smith said) was an absolutely stupid remark. He never made any kind of comment like that when he signed Rashard Lewis and brought him from Seattle (in 2007) with a $128 million contract," Riley said.
"I thought it was pretty typical. I was kind of amused by it, especially reading down through the interview," Van Gundy said. "He goes into Charles Barkley, me and Otis and then says he doesn't worry about what people say. Wait, you called the press conference, you went off and everybody and you don't care what people say? Clearly, he cares a great deal about what people say. I was laughing when I saw that."Wow. I haven't seen bickering like this since watching two teenage girls get into a slapfight over the last Twilight hoodie at Spencer's.
"Pat's thing calling Otis' remarks stupid, I don't think they were any different than what several ex-players who played when Otis did had to say. They looked at the game differently back then and backed up what we said," Van Gundy said. "The position LeBron and Bosh took isn’t necessarily wrong, but it's different from what (Michael) Jordan, Magic (Johnson) and Larry Bird would have done. Otis was a part of that generation -- he wasn't at that level -- but that's the way those players looked at (James and Bosh going to Miami). Those (former players) wouldn't have tried to team up. So what Otis said wasn't a stupid remark. Unless of course you have a different opinion than Pat, then apparently it's stupid."
"Whether it's appropriate to do it or not (to pass judgments) is another issue, but if it's OK for Pat to do it he shouldn't be judging other people," Van Gundy said. "Pat was upset that he and his guys have gotten some criticism and he's sensitive and the funniest part of the whole thing is him saying he doesn’t worry about what people say. My question is then, 'Why did you go and call your own press conference?'"
"Pat getting onto people for making moral judgments made me laugh," Van Gundy continued. "I was with Pat when we had all of those Knicks series and he had no problem making moral judgments on my brother. What I read into that was that I guess Pat is the only one allowed to make those moral judgments and the rest of us can't do that. I guess we didn't realize that Pat's the only allowed to do that."
Labels: NBA Jam
Walker traded by the Boston Celtics to the Miami Heat; the Memphis Grizzlies traded Greg Ostertag (whom they had received from the Sacramento Kings) to the Utah Jazz; the Miami Heat traded Qyntel Woods, Alberto Miralles, a 2006 2nd round draft pick (Edin Bavcic) and a 2008 2nd round draft pick (Nikola Pekovic) to the Boston Celtics; the Miami Heat traded Eddie Jones to the Memphis Grizzlies; the Miami Heat traded Rasual Butler to the New Orleans/Oklahoma City Hornets; the Utah Jazz traded Curtis Borchardt to the Boston Celtics; the Utah Jazz traded Raul Lopez to the Memphis Grizzlies; and the Utah Jazz traded Kirk Snyder to the New Orleans/Oklahoma City Hornets.Now that's some serious player movement. Actually, it's more like a bowel movement, considering the players involved. But I digress.
"I didn't have a relationship with [Danny Ainge, the team's new director of basketball operations and a former Celtic], period. They're going to say cap reasons and this and that. But anybody who knows basketball knows this was a personal situation. He didn't like me. It's either him or the owners. Somebody didn't like me.Maybe...maybe not. As far as I could tell, the C's were united in their desire to exile their All-Star forward:
"I figured I had too much power for them. I think I had too many friendships off the court. I think he felt he couldn't have a relationship with me. And I just think he never had a high regard for my game. He's entitled to that opinion. I'm 99 percent sure coach [Jim] O'Brien didn't want me to leave."
In a news conference at the Celtics' training facility, Ainge denied that the move was personal, but then allowed that Walker's strong personality was a factor. Ainge said Walker's outspoken presence may have "stifled" the leadership of other Celtics.Still, things could have been worse for Walker. He was joining a Mavericks team that had won 60 games the season before (which tied the Spurs for best in the league) and led the Association in Offensive Rating (110.7 points scored per 100 possessios). But in the 2003 Western Conference Finals, the Mavericks had lost to the Spurs in six games.
"Antoine had a grasp on our franchise," Ainge told The Globe. "If Antoine is Michael Jordan, it's OK to have a grasp. If Antoine is Larry Bird, it's OK to have a grasp, or Bill Russell. I think those players had grasps on their franchises.
"But I didn't perceive Antoine's grasp on us as a positive thing."
Celtics owner Wyc Grousbeck also denied the deal was made because of a personality conflict.
"It was a unanimous recommendation from everybody involved in basketball," Grousbeck told The Globe. "The two people that [owner] Steve Pagliuca and I met with on Saturday, Jim O'Brien and Danny Ainge, both recommended the deal. The coaching staff, the scouts, player personnel, and Danny unanimously backed the deal. It was not personal."
It has been well-documented that Ainge, in his capacity as a television analyst, had been critical of Walker and his style of play.
"I think Antoine Walker is an excellent player and he's done an excellent job in this organization," Ainge told The Globe. "This is simply basketball. This has nothing to do with anything personal. I don't know Antoine except from basketball observation, from a fan, coaching, and general managing perspective. Maybe I didn't have as high a regard for his game as he had for his game, but I certainly respect Antoine Walker as a player."
On January 5, 2009, Walker was arrested for suspicion of drunk driving at Miami Beach. He had been driving with his headlights off and reportedly had a strong odor of alcohol. His case is still pending and thus has not been convicted.Then there was his bankruptcy (again from Wikipedia):
On July 15, 2009, Walker was charged with three felony counts of writing bad checks related to gambling debts he had incurred at three Las Vegas casinos. Walker was arrested on July 15 at Harrah's Casino in South Lake Tahoe, Nevada. The charges stemmed from over $800,000 in gambling debts. Walker was in Tahoe to play in the American Century Celebrity Golf Classic the following day.
On June 30, 2010, Walker entered a plea of not guilty on felony bad check charges stemming from his failure to pay $770,000 in gambling losses to Caeser's Palace and two other casinos in Las Vegas, Nevada, according to the Las Vegas Review Journal.
On May 18, 2010, Walker filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy protection in the Southern District of Florida (Miami) as case number 10-23558 with total assets of $4.3 million and debts of $12.7 million. The filing listed four pieces of real estate including a $2.3 million Miami home that is underwater with a mortgage of $3.6 million, and three other properties in Chicago, one listed for $1.4 million. Nazr Mohammed paid half the fee of Walker's bankruptcy attorney.Mind you, this is a guy who made almost $110 million in salary alone. And did I mention he was a slumlord too?!
...named the 1994 National Player of the Year by Associated Press/Rupp, United Press International, the Sporting News, Basketball America, Basketball Times, Basketball Weekly, CBS-TV/Chevrolet, ESPN and ABC analyst Dick Vitale, NABC/Kodak, Naismith and the RCA/U.S. Basketball Writers Association...recipient of the John R. Wooden Award as the nation's top college basketball player...led the NCAA and the Big Ten in scoring and rebounding averages of 30.3 ppg and 10.1 rpg respectively...also the unanimous Big Ten Player of the Year by coaches and media, in addition to being selected the conference's Male Athlete of the Year...first player to lead the Big Ten in scoring and rebounding in the same season since Minnesota's Mychal Thompson accomplished the feat in 1977-78...his 1,030 overall points that year and 560 conference points were single-season scoring records...the total of 1,030 points ranked 13th best for a single-season in NCAA Division I history...became the 15th Division I player all-time to score 1,000 in a season...finished his career at Purdue with the fourth-highest scoring average ever at 27.5 ppg...led the Boilermakers in scoring in 56 of his 62 contests and recorded 31 career double-doubles (pts/rebs)...his 44 points against Kansas (3/24/94) was a school record for an NCAA Tournament game.But it wasn't just the numbers. Robinson's performances were overwhelming. Drives. Dunks. All manner of crazy shots that routinely went in. And, most importantly, victories.
"I had him set up pretty good, I think. [The Spurs' players] were expecting a black hole. You know, somebody [who] as soon as he caught the ball, it was gone; never see it again. I said, 'I want you guys to make sure that you give him an opportunity to learn defense and all of that; but trust me, all he's going to do is shoot it every time he touches it. You're going to have to be very patient (with him).' We had him set up that way. He's smart. He came in and it might have taken him, you know, five minutes before he shot (the ball). He took a whole five minutes! In that five minutes, they saw him try to play D, so they accepted it."Said Robinson: "This is one of the best teams in the NBA. All I have to do is to come in and help out. ... This is a new beginning."
"Man, I'm happy. All I have to do is just be available. Just like in Game 1. If I'm needed, just give them a little spark. And leave the rest up to the guys.That "next season" never came. After a token appearence in Game 3 -- 5 minutes, 0-for-2 from the field, 0-for-1 from beyond the arc, all zeroes across the box score -- Robinson never again logged a single minute for the Spurs. I mean, he celebrated like a mother fucker when San Antonio won the title in Game 7, but the Spurs didn't ask him back. No other team signed him. And Big Dog quietly faded into retirement.
"I'm going to get a chance in one of these games. People know what I can do. People understand the things that I've been going through, and I'm still moving. That's why the minutes don't bother me. I'm gearing up for next season."