Archive for January 28th, 2008

The Seattle SuperSonics announced today that the team has assigned guard Mickael Gelabale to the Idaho Stampede of the NBA Development League.

Under the affiliation system with the D-League, NBA teams can assign up to two players who are rookies or in their second season to their D-League affiliate. Players can stay with the D-League team for as long as the team wishes, and be recalled back to the NBA at any time. A player can only be sent to the D-League a maximum of three times during the season.

The Stampede, the D-League affiliate for the Sonics and the Portland Trail Blazers, are coached by Bryan Gates, who worked as an assistant for the Sonics during summer league play in Las Vegas and Salt Lake City this past July. Idaho will play host to Bakersfield on Dec. 26 and Anaheim on Dec. 28.

The Memphis Grizzlies waived point guard Damon Stoudamire, club Vice President of Basketball Operations and General Manager Chris Wallace announced today.

It was a buyout, details of which will be posted later tonight.

Assuming Stoudamire clears waivers, it’s expected that the Celtics, Suns and Raptors may have interest in signing him, with Boston the clear favorite according to multiple media outlets quoted regularly over the last week on the NBA rumors page.

The 5-10, 174-pound playmaker was averaging 7.3 points, 3.9 assists and 2.4 rebounds in 21.5 minutes in 29 games (all starts) this season. Stoudamire had not played in the club’s last 14 games since logging 17 minutes at San Antonio on Dec. 30.

Stoudamire appeared in 118 games (107 starts) in two-plus seasons for the Grizzlies and averaged 8.4 points, 4.6 assists, 2.6 rebounds and 0.7 steals in 25.3 minutes. Memphis originally signed Stoudamire as a free agent on August 5, 2005.

“We appreciate the consummate professionalism and love for the game which Damon exhibited in Memphis,” said Wallace. “The entire organization wishes him the best and hopes that he realizes his wish to join a championship contending team.”

Currently in his 13th NBA season, Stoudamire has averaged 13.8 points, 6.3 assists, 3.5 rebounds and 1.1 steals in 33.9 minutes in 847 career games (789 starts) with the Toronto Raptors (1995-98), Portland Trail Blazers (1997-2005) and Memphis (2005-08). The Portland native has made 1,222 career three-point field goals, which ties him with John Starks for 22nd place on the NBA’s all-time list and eighth among active players.

The 34-year-old was originally selected in the first round (seventh overall) in the 1995 NBA Draft by the Raptors. The University of Arizona product made an immediate impact, averaging 19.0 points and a career-best 9.3 assists, and was named 1995-96 NBA Rookie of the Year.

The Grizzlies’ roster currently stands at 13 players.

Subscribe to the InsideHoops blog RSS feed. And talk on our basketball forum.

Anderson Varejao ankle update

This is official information as of 6:20 p.m. ET:

Cavaliers forward/center Anderson Varejao experienced a left ankle sprain during the third quarter of the Cavaliers game vs. the Lakers in LA, Sunday afternoon. X-rays taken at the arena were negative. He received an MRI today in LA, the results of which showed no additional injury beyond the sprain. He will continue to receive treatments in LA today and travel to Cleveland tomorrow morning. He will be evaluated at The Cleveland Clinic tomorrow night and his status will be updated after that. No timeline has been established for his return to the court at this point.

Jamison rockin a 20-10

Antawn Jamison enters play today as one of just two players in the Eastern Conference averaging at least 20 points and 10 rebounds per game. The other — Orlando’s Dwight Howard — will start for the Eastern Conference in next month’s NBA All-Star game. In the last ten years, only two players have averaged at least 20 points and 10 rebounds for a team with a winning record at the midpoint of the season and not been in the All-Star game; Carlos Boozer (22.2 ppg, 12.0 rpg) for the 27-14 Utah Jazz in 2006-07, and Chris Webber (22.8 ppg, 10.3 rpg) for the 30-11 Sacramento Kings in 2002-03 — both of whom were selected as All-Stars by the coaches, but did not play in the All-Star game due to injury.

Brendan Haywood talks free throws

Washington Wizards center Brendan Haywood on his improved free throw shooting: “For me it has been about getting my elbow up. It’s about locking my elbow in, extending it and getting it so that my follow through has nowhere to go but straight and long. When I do that I am going to miss short and long, not all over the place like when my elbow kicks out. Even when I miss I know how to correct it, whereas in previous years when I was having a bad stretch I was just hoping and wishing.”

Haywood on assistant coach Dave Hopla: “I definitely think he’s helped me out a lot. He met with me in Charlotte and we have continued to work everyday. Even in games he’s always talking about different things as far as balance and getting my elbow up. He will even tell me if I had a bad make because he knows that you need to have consistency when you are working with bad habits like I had before.”

Wolves assign Chris Richard to D-League

The Minnesota Timberwolves have assigned first-year center Chris Richard to the Sioux Falls SkyForce of the NBA Development League. Richard has appeared in 24 games for the Wolves this season, averaging 1.3 points and 1.9 rebounds in 9.2 minutes per game. Richard is the 27th player assigned to the D-League this season.

“Sioux Falls and the D-League will provide Chris with a great opportunity to play and gain valuable experience,” said Timberwolves Vice President of Basketball Operations Kevin McHale. “Chris is a player that we really like and we think has a bright future. With the current schedule in Sioux Falls, he’ll be able to have a few days of practice with the team before playing in several upcoming games.”

Per NBA rules, a player can be assigned to the team’s D-League affiliate a maximum of three times during the season. Sioux Falls, the D-League affiliate for Minnesota and Charlotte, is led by head coach Nate Tibbetts. Charlotte’s Jermareo Davidson is currently on assignment with Sioux Falls. The SkyForce have back-to-back home games against the Fort Wayne Mad Ants this Friday and Saturday before departing on a three-game road trip next week.

Raptors three-pointer notes

The Raptors Raptors are doing big things from three-point range this season. Here are some highlights:

Toronto became the first team in NBA history to make a three-point field goal in 700 consecutive games November 6, 2007 at Milwaukee.

Jason Kapono drained a three-pointer at the 10:29 mark of the first quarter to extend the streak.

Toronto set the NBA record for most consecutive games with at least one three-point field goal March 12, 2006 against the Indiana Pacers. Morris Peterson connected on his first three-point attempt with 1:41 remaining in the first quarter. Peterson’s make gave them 595 consecutive games with at least one three-pointer.

The last time the Raptors did not record a triple was Feb. 24, 1999 at Indiana (0-6).

The Miami Heat had their NBA record of 594 games with a three-pointer end Nov. 10, 2001 vs. Sacramento.

There have been 24 games during the streak in which the Raptors netted just one triple, including Nov. 30 vs. Memphis when Morris Peterson hit the lone three-pointer.

Toronto attempted a franchise-high 35 three-point field goals Apr. 7, 2006 at New Orleans/Oklahoma City (34, Mar. 13 vs. Philadelphia).

Guard Darrick Martin kept the streak alive vs. Dallas on Nov. 29, 2006 by hitting a three-pointer with 0.5 seconds remaining in the game.

Andrea Bargnani hit a third-quarter shot for the game’s only successful three-point field goal vs. Boston on Dec. 1, 2006.

Calderon’s great assist/turnover ratio

Guard Jose Calderon is on pace to become 11th player since 1989 to record an assist-per-turnover ratio over 5.00. Calderon currently leads the league with a 5.58 assist-per-turnover ratio (359 assists/66 turnovers). Muggsy Bogues holds the team record by finishing the 1999-00 with a 5.07 assist-per-turnover ratio.

Devin Harris out 2-3 weeks

Mavericks guard Devin Harris underwent an MRI today on his left ankle. The results revealed a left ankle bone bruise. There is no additional structural damage. He is anticipated to return to activity in 2-3 weeks.

Harris suffered the injury at the 7:53 mark of the fourth quarter in last night’s game vs. Denver. In 39 games this season, Harris has averaged career-highs 14.4 points, 5.3 assists and 1.44 steals. He is also shooting 48.3% from the field, a career-high 35.7% from 3-point range and 82.1% from the free throw line.

He did not travel with the team to Memphis for tonight’s game.

Spurs recall Ian Mahinmi from D-League

The San Antonio Spurs announced today that they have recalled Ian Mahinmi from the Austin Toros of the NBA Development League (D-League).

In 24 games with the Toros, Mahinmi averaged 18.0 points, 7.7 rebounds and 1.20 blocks in 30.4 minutes. He is leading the D-League in field goal percentage, shooting .644 (154-239) from the field.  He set career-highs with 32 points and 17 rebounds in a 90-79 win at Utah on 12/21.  Mahinmi tied his points-high with 32 points at Tulsa on 1/27.

The 6-11, 230-pound Mahinmi appeared in six games for the Spurs this season, averaging 3.5 points in 3.8 minutes per contest.  He finished with a season-high 12 points and two blocks in 12 minutes of action vs. Milwaukee on Nov. 11. He was assigned to Austin on 11/21.

Originally selected by the Spurs in the first round (28th overall selection) of the 2005 NBA Draft, Mahinmi signed with the Silver and Black on Aug. 23, 2007.  He has spent the past four seasons playing in the French A League.  Last season he played for Pau-Orthez, appearing in 33 French League games, averaging 4.3 points and 3.2 rebounds in 12.7 minutes per game.  He also saw action in 18 EuroLeague games, averaging 3.7 points and 2.7 rebounds in 11.3 minutes per contest.

Mahinmi is the first player the Spurs have assigned to the Toros since Spurs Sports & Entertainment purchased the Austin franchise on June 28, 2007.  The Spurs join the L.A. Lakers as the second NBA team to own a D-League team (the Lakers own the L.A. Defenders).  Austin is led by first-year head coach Quin Snyder.

Several clutch performances yesterday reports: Jan. 27 may now be considered an official NBA holiday. We can call it, Cool/Clutch Performance Day. On Sunday, Hedo Turkoglu buried a game-winning buzzer-beating 3-pointer to lift the Magic; Kevin Martin nailed a corner jumper at the final buzzer to give the Kings a W; Brandon Roy sank a go-ahead free throw with 2.3 seconds remaining to propel the Blazers; Mo Williams hit back-to-back treys in overtime and Royal Ivey drained one of his own to ice Milwaukee’s win; and Al Jefferson fired in four straight free throws in the final seconds to cap Minnesota’s miraculous comeback triumph.

Jefferson, Biedrins making noise reports: Al Jefferson and Andris Biedrins are two of the NBA’s rising inside sensations. It was well featured on Sunday as these two stuffed the stat sheet with authority. Jefferson, first off, recorded a career-best 40 points and added 19 rebounds and three assists in Minnesota’s miraculous comeback win over New Jersey. Biedrins, meanwhile, grabbed an NBA season-high 26 boards to go along with 11 points in Golden State’s triumph over New York.

InsideHoops.coms says: Of course, Jefferson is a rising star, while Biedrins is more of a star role player. Just to be clear.

LeBron or Kobe for one game

If I had to choose between LeBron James or Kobe Bryant for one game, it would probably come down to who their teammates are. LeBron looks to create for others a bit more, Kobe looks to take over the game himself. But both players are perfectly good at everything on offense. If a dude is open, Kobe can nail him. And LeBron can completely dominate all on his own, teammates or no teammates. Still, if I had to pick one or the other for one game, I’d probably still go with Kobe.

Basketball blog