Archive for August 24th, 2009

Suns name John Shumate assistant coach

The Phoenix Suns today named John Shumate an assistant coach.  Shumate, a one-time Suns draft pick and 30-year veteran of basketball on the professional and collegiate levels, joins Bill Cartwright, Dan Majerle and Igor Kokoskov on head coach Alvin Gentry’s staff.

Having just completed his 12th season as a member of the Suns’ front office, Shumate makes the move to Gentry’s staff after serving in the club’s scouting department for all but one of the last eight seasons.  Shumate served as the head coach of the WNBA’s Phoenix Mercury in 2003.

Shumate’s wealth of basketball experience was formed over the last 30 years as a player, coach and college scout.  Originally the fourth overall pick of the 1974 NBA Draft by the Suns, Shumate was named All-NBA Rookie First Team in 1975-76 after sitting out his rookie campaign with a blood clot injury.  The Notre Dame product played seven NBA seasons and averaged 12.3 points and 7.5 rebounds in 318 games with the Suns, Buffalo, Detroit, Houston, San Antonio and Seattle.

Following his playing career, Shumate coached 17 consecutive years at the college and pro level at Notre Dame (assistant coach, 1981-83, 1986-88), Grand Canyon College (now Grand Canyon State, head coach, 1983-86), Southern Methodist University (head coach, 1988-94) and the NBA’s Toronto Raptors (assistant coach, 1995-98).  The 57-year-old rejoined the Suns organization as a community relations representative in 1998 before moving to the scouting department in 2000.

The team also announced today the addition of Bruce Fraser to the scouting staff.  Elvis Valcarcel has been promoted to video coordinator after one season as assistant video coordinator.

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Michael Beasley checks into rehab center

The AP reports: The Miami Heat forward checked into a Houston rehabilitation facility last week and is being treated for various issues, including depression, a person briefed on the situation told the Associated Press yesterday. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because of privacy concerns, and could not say whether the other issues included drug or alcohol treatment. “Based on what I’m getting right now, there’s a bit of concern,’’ Bruce Shingler, Beasley’s manager, said in a telephone interview. “I don’t really know what’s going on. I just know his mom is on her way to go see him in Houston. That’s it. I’m still collecting a lot of information.’’ It’s unknown how long Beasley, 20, will remain at the facility, or whether he will be available when the Heat open training camp Sept. 28.

The Denver Post reports: Nuggets forward Renaldo Balkman was arrested over the weekend on suspicion of driving under the influence, according to a police report on the Hillsborough (Fla.) County Sheriff’s Office website. The 25-year-old Balkman was arrested by Temple Terrace, Fla., police at 4 a.m. Saturday, after he refused a blood-alcohol content test.

The following is a statement from Nuggets Vice President of Basketball Operations Mark Warkentien regarding Renaldo Balkman: “We are aware of a traffic violation involving Renaldo Balkman early Saturday morning in Tampa. As is team policy and out of respect for the legal process, we will have no further comment.”

InsideHoops.com editor says: Uh, pay for a cab. Or pay a sober buddy to drive you home in your car and then give that dude cab money to get himself home. Or stay in a hotel. Or sleep in your car. Or something. It’s really not that hard to avoid ever driving under the influence, especially if you make thousands of dollars per day.

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