Archive for December 30th, 2009

Blazers sign Shavlik Randolph

Blazers sign Shavlik Randolph

The Portland Trail Blazers have signed forward Shavlik Randolph, it was announced today by General Manager Kevin Pritchard.

Randolph, 26, rejoins the Trail Blazers after averaging 1.8 points, 1.8 rebounds and 3.7 minutes in 10 games with Portland last season.

Portland was allowed to sign Randolph and bring its roster to 16 players after the NBA awarded the team its second hardship exemption of the season on Tuesday.

The Duke University product has career averages of 2.4 points, 2.5 rebounds and 8.3 minutes in 91 games (seven starts) with Philadelphia, Portland and Miami.

Randolph (6-10, 240) appeared in two games for Miami this season, netting two points, seven rebounds and a blocked shot in 23 minutes before being waived on Dec. 14.

He will wear No. 42 with the Trail Blazers.

Knicks interested in Tracy McGrady

Marc Berman of the New York Post report:

Mike D’Antoni threw the Knicks’ hat into the ring in the Tracy McGrady sweepstakes.

D’Antoni acknowledged for the first time publicly the Knicks are interested in pursuing the former superstar, McGrady, saying the Rockets swingman has enough left in the tank to be a leading man and calling the issue “an intriguing thing that will be evaluated in-depth.”

“It’s a name Donnie [Walsh] I’m sure will analyze and look at and see if it makes sense,” D’Antoni said. “I think you always have to be intrigued with someone like McGrady and Allen Iverson. It’s up to Donnie to evaluate it and sit down and talk about it and see what the other side of the coin is. I don’t know what it entails. I’m sure the antennae goes up and there will be discussions.”

Tuesday night in Washington, D.C. the Wizards lost to the Oklahoma City Thunder 110-98.

The Thunder shot 54.4 percent from the field in the win, and nailed 10-of-18 from three-point range.

Wizards coach Flip Saunders is tired of his team’s inability to play defense.

Mike Jones of the Washington Times reports:

“This team needs a mindset change. This team for the last five years has been known as one of the worst defensive teams in the league, and until we make a commitment…” Saunders said, stopping himself short before hunkering down in front of the microphone. “We couldn’t stop anybody out there. We could’ve taken five guys out of this room and they would’ve had a chance. …

“[Oklahoma City] is playing a lot better, but that is not the Cleveland Cavaliers or the Los Angeles Lakers or one of those teams yet. Until they score on you and it hurts, we’re kidding ourselves.” …

The Wizards had primarily used a zone defense to slow the Thunder in the second quarter, but in the third Oklahoma City found a way around it to make 10 of its 19 field goal attempts - further stoking Saunders’ frustrations.

“Zone got us back in the game, and we did well playing some zone. And then guys want to come out of the zone and play man-to-man, but they can’t guard anybody!” the coach fumed. “I could go out there on that floor and take anyone on our team one-on-one at [54] years old and drive around them.”

It’s tough to say what Saunders can do. Other than Russell Westbrook, who was slightly off, virtually every member of the Thunder who played real minutes shot well last night.

It may be time for the Wizards to break up the Gilbert Arenas, Caron Butler and Antawn Jamison core.

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