Archive for October 8th, 2008

JR Giddens tattoos have meaning

The Boston Herald (Mark Murphy) reports: J.R. Giddens is a man of many tattoos, but each, he says, have a purpose. A basketball encircled by a Black Mamba snake is tattooed over the Celtics rookie’s heart with the inscription, “Natural Born Killer” - an apparent reference to his playing style. But his newest - a green shamrock with the No. 4 behind his left ear - may also be one of his most dear. “I was the last pick of the first round,” he said. “Everyone had a chance to get me and they passed, and this is the team that took me. So I wanted to honor it.” Of his body art philosophy, Giddens said, “Some guys have tattoos all over that don’t mean anything. Mine all mean something.”

Oct 7: Raptors 104, Cavs 84

The AP reports: LeBron James played just 8 minutes in the first quarter before he raised his hand for a substitute and coach Mike Brown pulled his superstar for the remainder of Cleveland’s preseason debut… Toronto’s Jermaine O’Neal, acquired from Indiana in a July trade, scored 11 points in his Raptors debut. O’Neal missed 40 games last season because of lingering knee problems and dropped weight over the summer to ease the pressure on his joints. Will Solomon scored 17 points, Andrea Bargnani 15 and Kris Humphries 14 for the Raptors, who didn’t attempt a 3-pointer in the first half but dropped six from long range after halftime… Zydrunas Ilgauskas scored 16 points and Williams, acquired in an August trade from Milwaukee, added 12 points, four assists and three rebounds in 26 minutes.

Oct 7: Rockets 96, Grizzlies 93

The AP reports: Ron Artest gave Houston fans an early glimpse of what he brings to the team. Artest scored 12 of his 15 points in the first quarter of his Rockets debut, and Houston beat the Memphis Grizzlies 96-93 on Tuesday night in its preseason opener… Tracy McGrady sat out to rest his sore left knee… Carl Landry, Yao’s backup, had 18 points and nine rebounds… Rudy Gay scored 14 for the Grizzlies and had a pair of highlight-reel dunks in the fourth quarter. Hakim Warrick led Memphis with 15, including a dunk that tied it at 92.

Oct 7: Mavs 108, Wizards 82

The AP reports: Dirk Nowitzki and Brandon Bass each scored 17 points to lead the Dallas Mavericks to a 108-82 victory over the injury-depleted Washington Wizards on Tuesday night in the preseason opener for both teams. Wizards forward Antawn Jamison left in the first quarter with a right knee injury and did not return… Andray Blatche’s 18 points paced the Wizards. Dallas’ Josh Howard, who finished with 15 points, was greeted by a mixture of cheers and boos from the crowd when he was introduced with the starting lineup following a controversy-filled offseason.

Oct 7: Jazz 99, Lakers 90

The AP reports: Ronnie Brewer and Paul Millsap each scored 13 points, Deron Williams had 11 points and eight assists, and the Utah Jazz beat the Los Angeles Lakers 99-90 on Tuesday night in the preseason opener for both teams. Kobe Bryant played 24 minutes for the Lakers, finishing with eight points, five rebounds and five assists after sitting out the entire second and fourth quarters. Bryant, who won the league’s MVP last season for the first time in his career, was on the gold medal-winning U.S. Olympic team at the Beijing Olympics along with Williams and Utah teammate Carlos Boozer.

Oct 7: Blazers 110, Kings 81

The AP reports: Greg Oden debuted to a standing ovation, as did the rest of the young Portland Trail Blazers, in a 110-81 exhibition victory over the Sacramento Kings on Tuesday night. Oden finished with 13 points in just under 20 minutes… Brandon Roy, who had arthroscopic surgery on his left knee in August, played a little more than 23 minutes and had 14 points and seven assists for the Blazers. Martell Webster led Portland with 15 points. Donte Greene, acquired from Houston in the Artest deal, had 18 points and Francisco Garcia added 12 for the Kings, who led by as many as 11 points in the first half before the Blazers seized control.

Mike Dunleavy now Clippers GM

The Los Angeles Clippers today announced that Head Coach Mike Dunleavy will assume the additional role of General Manager, replacing Vice President of Basketball Operations, Elgin Baylor.

In a related move, the team’s current Director of Player Personnel, Neil Olshey, will be elevated to the post of Assistant General Manager.

“We greatly appreciate Elgin’s efforts during his time with the Clippers, and we wish him the very best,” said Clippers’ Owner and Chairman of the Board Donald T. Sterling.

Referring to Dunleavy and Olshey respectively, Clippers President Andy Roeser said, “In Mike and Neil, we’re fortunate to already have talented people in place to make this transition a seamless one. Going forward, we have high expectations for our team. From a basketball standpoint, these are the people we’re counting on to make those expectations a reality.”

Dunleavy welcomed the opportunity, saying, “I really appreciate the trust that the organization has placed in me. We’re ready and excited to move forward, and we think we’ll have a team which can be dynamic and exciting, certainly one with enough talent to be a force in the Western Conference.”

Baylor, an 11-time NBA All Star, joined the Clippers in 1986 as Vice President of Basketball Operations after a stellar 14-year playing career with the Los Angeles Lakers and a brief coaching stint with the New Orleans Jazz. He was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame in 1976, chosen as one of the NBA’s “50 Greatest Players of All Time” during the league’s 50th Anniversary celebration in 1997, and was named the 2005-06 NBA Executive of the Year.

Dunleavy, entering his sixth year as Clippers’ Head Coach, has manned dual roles before: he was Vice President of Basketball Operations and Head Coach of the Milwaukee Bucks from 1992-93 through 1995-96.

Olshey, originally hired as Clippers’ Director of Player Development prior to the 2003-04 season, became an assistant coach on Dunleavy’s staff in 2004-05. He has been the team’s Director of Player Personnel for the past three seasons.

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