Archive for July 25th, 2009

San Antonio Spurs sign Theo Ratliff

The San Antonio Spurs today announced that they have signed center Theo Ratliff. Per team policy terms of the deal were not disclosed. We heard it would be a one-year, minimum deal, but will check on that later today.

Ratliff has played for six teams (Detroit, Philadelphia, Atlanta, Portland, Boston and Minnesota) during his 14 NBA seasons. In 751 career games, he has averaged 7.5 points, 5.9 rebounds and 2.53 blocks in 26.1 minutes. Ratliff has shot .498 (2,136-4,293) from the floor and .600 (1,357-1,913) from the line over his career. He has appeared in 39 playoff games averaging 5.8 points, 4.7 rebounds and 1.72 blocks in 15.7 minutes per game. Ratliff enjoyed his best season in 2000-01, averaging 12.4 points, 8.3 rebounds and 3.74 blocks and was voted as the starting center for the Eastern Conference All-Star Team (he missed the game due to injury).

A two-time NBA All-Defensive Second Team selection (1998-99, 2003-04), Ratliff is one of seven players in NBA history to lead the league in blocks in at least three seasons (2000-01, 2002-03 and 2003-04). He ranks 18th all-time in total blocks (1,902) and is fifth among active players.

The 6-10, 238-lb. Ratliff spent last season with the Philadelphia 76ers. He averaged 1.9 points, 2.6 rebounds and 1.02 blocks in 12.6 minutes while appearing in 46 games.

InsideHoops.com editor says: Ratliff is old but smart and can try to do for the Spurs what Dikembe Mutombo was doing for the Rockets. He will contribute solid defense for a few minutes per half. Ratliff isn’t a day older than 58 at this point (being serious, he turned 36 in April) and can still block a shot and grab a rebound if he has his walker.

The Memphis Grizzlies have renounced their qualifying offer to forward Hakim Warrick, making him an unrestricted free agent, Grizzlies General Manager and Vice President of Basketball Operations Chris Wallace announced.

Warrick, the team’s longest-tenured player and the last remaining member of the Grizzlies’ most-recent playoff appearance in 2006, averaged 11.6 points and 5.0 rebounds on 49.1 percent shooting in 82 games (seven starts) last season.

The 6-9, 219-pound forward has averaged 10.2 points and 4.3 rebounds in 307 games (82 starts) through four NBA seasons, all with the Grizzlies, who originally selected him with the 19th overall pick in the 2005 NBA Draft.

In accordance with the league’s collective bargaining agreement, in order for a team to retain its right of first refusal with respect to a restricted free agent, the team must tender the player a qualifying offer prior to June 30.  After which, teams may withdraw outstanding qualifying offers, in which case a player becomes an unrestricted free agent.

Charles Oakley as an NBA power forward was an enforcer. He banged, slammed opponents around, rebounded, defended, set great screens, and was able to hit open mid-range jumpers. And he has a lot to teach today’s young players. And he’s having a great life off the court right now, but would love to become an NBA assistant. The New York Times reports:

“I think I have a lot to teach these young guys,” Oakley, 46, said. “Especially on the defensive end.”

Oakley said his former teammate Patrick Ewing did a great job this season as an assistant with the Orlando Magic. He said he could have similar success with the Knicks, and told the team’s president, Donnie Walsh, just that.

“Nowadays, you may have better athletes,” he said. “But unless they’re taught, they aren’t going to do anything in the league. I talked with Donnie after the last home game and told him that I think I have a lot to offer this team. You can’t just score more points than last year without playing defense.”

I think Oak would be terrific. He’d tell players what they really need to hear and not sugarcoat anything. And if a player acts out of line, Oakley will happily smack him around for a while.

The San Antonio Express-News (Craig Kapitan) reports: Security guard turned Bexar County Jail inmate Christopher James Carolan pleaded no contest Friday to stealing an autographed Michael Jordan jersey from Spurs star Tony Parker. Carolan, who wore orange jail scrubs and handcuffs as he stood before 186th District Judge Maria Teresa Herr, was arrested in June after Parker’s manager showed sheriff’s office investigators a Craigslist ad for the jersey that was posted a day after the collectors’ item went missing. The jersey, valued at $20,000, was sold for $120, court documents indicate.

InsideHoops.com editor says: So the guy steals something and immediately advertises it for sale on the Internet. And then sells it for less than 1/10th the approximate going rate for the item.

Basketball blog