Archive for January 29th, 2008

The official website of the NBL (Australia’s main basketball league) reports: Adelaide’s star import Julius Hodge has taken out the National Basketball League’s Player of the Week award for Round 19 of the 2007/08 HUMMER Championship after guiding his team to a crucial win over Cairns that kept the 36ers playoff hopes alive. Hodge averaged 33.0 points, 7.0 rebounds and 4.5 assists for the week as the 36ers went 1-1 for Round 19. The American had 27 points, four rebounds and four assists as Adelaide narrowly lost to second-placed Melbourne on Wednesday at the Distinctive Homes Dome, 113-108.

The San Antonio Express-News (Mike Monroe) reports: It can’t happen until early Wednesday evening, when Damon Stoudamire clears waivers, but it now appears likely the Spurs will sign the 5-foot-10 point guard who on Monday finalized terms of a buyout of his contract with the Memphis Grizzlies. Stoudamire had expressed interest in signing with both the Spurs and the Boston Celtics, but seems to have settled on San Antonio as his destination of choice.

Warriors sign Chris Webber

The Golden State Warriors have signed free agent forward/center Chris Webber to a contract, Executive Vice President of Basketball Operations Chris Mullin announced today.  Per team policy, terms of the agreement were not announced.
 Webber, 34, appeared in 61 games (60 starts) last season with Philadelphia (18 games) and Detroit (43 games), averaging 11.2 points, 7.2 rebounds and 3.1 assists in 29.9 minutes per contest, while shooting 50.9% from the field.  The Detroit native registered 13 double-doubles (points/rebounds), highlighted by a 20-point/11-rebound effort versus Cleveland on March 7.  He scored a season-high 24 points at Seattle on March 13 and registered double-figures in scoring 34 times overall.  Additionally, Webber dished out four or more assists on 21 occasions, grabbed 10-plus rebounds 15 times and registered multiple blocked shots in 10 outings.  His .509 field goal percentage would have ranked 24th overall in the NBA had he met the statistical minimums to qualify.  Webber started all 16 playoff games as the Pistons advanced to the Eastern Conference Finals, averaging 9.9 points, 6.3 rebounds and 1.5 assists in 25.3 minutes, while shooting 52.4% from the field.  He scored a playoff-high 22 points (10-11 FG) during the Pistons’ Game 2 victory over Chicago on May 7 in the Eastern Conference Semifinals.
 “We’re glad that Chris has elected to sign with our club and feel fortunate to add a player with his ability,” said Mullin. “We think he will be a nice addition to our team and provide additional depth to our frontcourt and an added veteran presence on the floor.   Chris has enjoyed a lot of success in this league and certainly has many aspects to his game – in particular his mid-range shooting and passing ability - that will fit in well and provide us another dimension.”
 “It is with great pride and humility that I announce my return to the Golden State Warriors, the place where it all started,” said Webber. “This organization and city has always had a special place in my heart because it is where my dream of being an NBA player first came true. I am looking forward to playing with Baron, Stephen and the rest of the crew and I am extremely excited to be reunited with the fans of Oakland along with Coach Nelson and my former teammate, Mully. In playing for Nellie before, I know how much fun his style of ball can be. I believe great things are in store and I can’t wait to get on the court.”
 A 14-year NBA veteran, Webber is a five-time NBA All-Star selection (1997, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003) and a five-time All-NBA selection, having earned first team honors in 2001, second team honors in 1999, 2002, 2003 and third team honors in 2000.  In 822 career regular-season games (819 starts) with Golden State, Washington, Sacramento, Philadelphia and Detroit, the University of Michigan product owns averages of 20.9 points, 9.8 rebounds, 4.3 assists, 1.45 blocks and 1.45 steals in 34.7 minutes per contest.  Additionally, Webber has participated in the NBA Playoffs 10 times during his career, appearing in 80 games with averages of 18.7 points, 8.7 rebounds and 3.6 assists in 36.3 minutes per game.

Bob Ryan’s Son Dead at 37

Keith Ryan, 37, an attache for US Customs in Pakistan, has died from a gunshot wound.   The bullet appeared to be self-inflicted. 

[link below]

Ryan is the son of Bob Ryan, a columnist for the Boston Globe.  The elder Ryan, a 1994 inductee into the Basketball Writers’ Association, was the USBWA president in 2001-02.

The Detroit Pistons announced today that they have re-assigned rookie center Cheikh Samb to their NBA Development League affiliate, the Fort Wayne Mad Ants.

The assignment will be Samb’s second this season.  He was originally assigned to Fort Wayne on Monday, December 10.  In two games (both starts) during his first stint, Samb averaged 13.5 points, 9.5 rebounds and 4.0 blocks in 31.5 minutes with the Mad Ants.

Samb was acquired by the Pistons on draft day from the Los Angeles Lakers in exchange for Maurice Evans on June 28, 2006. Drafted by the Lakers with the 51st pick in the second round of the 2006 NBA Draft, Samb spent the 2006-07 season playing overseas with WTC Cornella in the Spanish LEB2 League.

The 7-foot-1, 215-pound center made his NBA debut with the Pistons at the L.A. Lakers on November 16, scoring two points with four rebounds and two blocks in 15 minutes.  In two NBA games this season, Samb is averaging 1.5 points, 2.0 rebounds and 1.0 blocks in 10.5 minutes per game.

No timetable has been set for his return.

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