Archive for July, 2010

Cavaliers sign Joey Graham

Cavaliers sign Joey Graham

The Cleveland Cavaliers have signed guard/forward Joey Graham to a contract, Cavaliers General Manager Chris Grant announced today.  Per league and team policy, terms of the contract were not announced.

Graham, 28, played in 63 games (18 starts) during the 2009-10 season with the Denver Nuggets, averaging 4.2 points on a career-high .520 shooting and 2.0 rebounds in 12.1 minutes per game.  In his 18 starts, he averaged 7.4 points on .473 shooting and 3.3 rebounds in 21.9 minutes per game.

“We’re excited to add Joey to our roster. He adds a tough, veteran presence on the perimeter that will complement the pieces we have in place,” said Cavaliers General Manager Chris Grant. “With his strong work ethic and discipline, we feel he is a great match with the culture we have built and continue to build.”

Prior to joining the Nuggets, the 6-foot-7 guard/forward played four seasons with the Toronto Raptors.  In the 2008-09 season, Graham posted career highs of 7.7 points and 3.7 rebounds in 19.8 minutes over 78 games (10 starts).  In the 10 starts, he averaged 11.0 points and 4.0 rebounds in 28.3 minutes.

“Joining Cleveland marks an exciting, brand new start for me,” said Graham. “This is a great opportunity and I’m excited to come in and help the team as much as possible.”

In his career, the five-year veteran has played in 338 games, including 76 starts, and averaged 6.0 points and 2.9 rebounds. He has shot .815 from the free-throw line and .485 from the field.

Sarah Talalay of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel reports:

The Heat’s decision to halt season tickets sales on speculation it might sign LeBron James means the team no longer needs a season ticket sales staff.

About 30 employees were told Friday morning they were losing their jobs, and some were moved to other positions. The Heat confirmed the layoffs in a statement indicating with its season ticket inventory “exhausted, we no longer require a season ticket sales team to sell tickets…

Sources said the employees made a base salary and commission, which was sizable during the sales rush that came on rumors the team might sign LeBron James, Chris Bosh and re-sign Dwyane Wade. Some employees were offered severance of up to a year’s salary and extended benefits. Additionally, some staffers might be hired back to oversee season ticket holder accounts, the sources said.

Wizards re-sign Josh Howard

Wizards re-sign Josh Howard

Washington Wizards President Ernie Grunfeld announced today that the team has re-signed free agent swingman Josh Howard.  Per team policy, terms of the deal were not announced. It had been reported that the deal would be for one year.

“We were impressed with Josh’s versatility, how well he fit in with our team and his attitude and work ethic both before and after his unfortunate knee injury,” said Grunfeld.  “His experience playing in a winning situation makes him an ideal veteran presence for us as we develop our roster of young talent.”

A former All-Star (2007), Howard holds career averages of 15.3 points and 6.0 rebounds per game in 435 games (371 starts) over seven professional seasons in Dallas and Washington, including career highs of 19.9 points, 7.0 rebounds and 2.2 assists during the 2007-08 season.  He was originally acquired by the Mavericks in the first round (29th pick) of the 2003 Draft, and later appeared in 62 career playoff games (57 starts) for Dallas, with averages of 15.5 points and 7.2 rebounds per game in postseason play.  Howard averaged 16.7 points and 7.4 rebounds in 23 playoff games (all starts) for the Mavericks during their run to the 2006 NBA Finals.

Howard initially joined the Wizards via trade from Dallas on February 13, 2010, and appeared in four games (three starts) for Washington last season.  In his first three contests as a Wizard, he averaged 17.0 points and 4.0 rebounds per game before a knee injury on February 22nd vs. Chicago caused him to miss the final 28 games of the season.

DALLAS - FEBRUARY 12: NBA player Josh Howard attends the Exclusive FABULOUS 23 Dinner hosted by Jordan Brand during All-Star Weekend on February 12, 2010 in Dallas, Texas. (Photo by Charley Gallay/Getty Images for Jordan Brand)

The AP reports:

Amare Stoudemire in Israel to trace Hebrew roots

NBA star Amare Stoudemire says he has come to Israel to explore whether he has Jewish heritage.

He tells The Associated Press on Friday that he believes he has “Hebrew roots” through his mother, Carrie.

The five-time All-Star who recently signed with the New York Knicks is on a weeklong visit to learn about Israel, its language and religions.

The New York Post reports:

Two weeks ago, new Knicks power forward Amar’e Stoudemire arrived in Vegas for Knicks summer league with a tattoo of the “Star of David” on his arm.

“What’s that?,” he was asked by The Post.

“What does it look like?” Stoudemire replied.

When asked if that means he is Jewish, Stoudemire replied flatly: “Yes.”

The New York Post reports:

However, Stoudemire posted on his Twitter account yesterday: “To clear everything up: I’m studying history & want to learn about all religions. I think I might have some Hebrew Roots and I’m researching it.”

Amar'e Stoudemire holds up a Knicks jersey after working out a 5 year and nearly 100 million dollar contract to play with the New York Knicks at Madison Square Garden in New York City on July 8, 2010.    UPI/John Angelillo Photo via Newscom

Thunder waive Kyle Weaver

Oklahoma City Thunder Executive Vice President and General Manager Sam Presti announced today that the team has waived guard Kyle Weaver.

In two seasons with the Thunder, Weaver appeared in 68 games (19 starts) and recorded averages of 4.9 points, 2.2 rebounds and 1.6 assists in 19.3 minutes per contest.

Pistons re-sign Will Bynum

Pistons re-sign Will Bynum

Detroit Pistons President of Basketball Operations Joe Dumars announced today that the club has re-signed guard Will Bynum to a contract. Per team policy, terms of the contract were not disclosed.

According to Michigan Live, “A team source said this week the deal is worth a guaranteed $9.75 million over three years, while Bynum’s agent has said the contract is for $10.5 million.”

“We are pleased to re-sign Will Bynum,” said Dumars. “Will brings unique skills to our team at the point guard position and we feel his leadership and play-making abilities will continue to grow and evolve.”

Bynum, 27, appeared in a career-high 63 games (career-high 20 starts) last season, averaging career-high numbers in points (10.0), rebounds (2.3), assists (4.3), steals (0.9) and minutes (26.5). He led the team in scoring three times and assists 25 times. Bynum dished out career-high 20 assists vs. Washington (3/12) which was the most by a Piston since Isiah Thomas recorded 21 on 4/12/85.

The 6-foot guard appeared in 57 games (one start) during the 2008-09 campaign, averaging 7.2 points (.456 FG, .798 FT), 1.3 rebounds, 2.8 assists and 0.59 steals in 14.1 minutes per game. He scored a career-high 32 points (career-high 14-16 FT) vs. Charlotte (4/5), including a franchise-record 26 points in the fourth quarter.

The Chicago, IL native was not drafted by an NBA franchise and signed by the Pistons as a free agent on July 30, 2008. He has appeared in 120 regular season games (21 starts) during his two-year stint with Detroit, averaging 8.7 points, 1.8 rebounds and 3.7 assists in 20.6 minutes per game.

February 09, 2010 Milwaukee, WI. Bradley Center..Detroit Pistons Will Bynum brings the ball up the court, Bynum had 4 point tonight against the Bucks..Milwaukee Bucks lost to the Detroit Pistons 81-93. Mike McGinnis/CSM.

Hawks re-sign Jason Collins

Hawks re-sign Jason Collins

The Atlanta Hawks have re-signed center Jason Collins, according to Executive Vice President/General Manager Rick Sund. Per team policy, the financial terms were not disclosed.

“We’re excited to welcome Jason back to the team,” said Hawks head coach Larry Drew. “He’s a veteran presence in the locker room, and adds experienced depth to the frontcourt. Jason has worked hard in the offseason, and with his knowledge of the system we’re implementing, he’ll continue to be a valuable contributor to our club.”

Collins appeared in 24 games last season for the Hawks, averaging 0.7 ppg and 0.6 rpg in 4.8 mpg (.348 FG%). The nine-year veteran has posted career averages of 4.1 ppg, 4.2 rpg and 1.0 apg in 22.7 mpg (.410 FG%, .647 FT%) in 596 games (429 starts) with New Jersey, Memphis, Minnesota and Atlanta.

He’s also appeared in 78 postseason contests in his career (3.6 ppg, 4.3 rpg), including trips to the NBA Finals with the Nets in 2002 and 2003.

Samuel Goldsmith of the New York Daily News reports:

Another arrest warrant issued for Eddy Curry

A Chicago judge has issued an arrest warrant for the troubled New York Knicks center for the second time since June, it was reported yesterday.

The judge signed the warrant after learning the ballplayer hasn’t finished paying a $660,000 payout for sex with an underage girl, the Chicago Sun Times said.

The payout stems from a 2001 case in which Curry, then 18, was sued for having sex with a 14-year-old girl. He agreed to settlement in 2007, but still owes nearly $200,000.

The Sacramento Kings’ Head Coach Paul Westphal today announced an addition to his coaching staff, reaching an agreement with Otis Hughley to join the team as an assistant coach.

“Otis has a wealth of experience working with young players and is ready to jump to the NBA,” said Westphal. “We’re very excited to add him to our staff to replace Bryan Gates.”

“It’s an exciting time,” Hughley said. “I’m looking forward to being with an organization that’s proven and that’s exhibited class. I’m really looking forward to working with Coach Westphal and his staff.”

Hughley had coached at LeFlore High School in Mobile, Ala. for seven years (2004-2010), guiding the Rattlers to six straight regional appearances and a 6A state title in 2007. While at LeFlore, he coached current Kings center Demarcus Cousins. Before coaching at LeFlore, Hughley was an assistant coach at several universities, including Wright State, Liberty, and Southern. Hughley’s experience also includes coaching for the league’s NBA China program and working over 10 years at Pete Newell’s “Big Man Camp.”

Spurs release Malik Hairston

malik hairston

The San Antonio Spurs today announced that, per his request, the team has released Malik Hairston from his contract.

The guard is reportedly set to sign in Italy.

“We’ve enjoyed having Malik in our organization,” said Spurs General Manager RC Buford. “He is a hard-worker, a talented basketball player and an outstanding young man. After Malik approached us we were happy to honor his request as it will, after he clears waivers, allow him to pursue an excellent overseas basketball opportunity.”

Hairston was selected by the Phoenix Suns, with the 48th overall pick, in the second round of the 2008 NBA Draft. In a draft night deal he was then traded to San Antonio – along with a 2009 second round pick – in exchange for the draft rights to Goran Dragic.

In two seasons with the Spurs, Hairston appeared in a total of 62 games, averaging 2.4 points in 7.6 minutes. During each of his two seasons with San Antonio he also saw action with the Austin Toros (the Spurs NBA Development League team). With the Toros he averaged 24.9 points and 5.2 rebounds in a total of 45 regular season games.

The AP reports:

Former high school star Jeremy Tyler has signed with the Tokyo Apache of Japan’s professional basketball league.

The team announced the signing Thursday on its official website. The 19-year-old Tyler will play for former NBA coach Bob Hill, who was hired by the team last month.

“We are extremely excited for Jeremy to join our team in Tokyo,” the team said in a statement. “His athleticism and size will be a major presence in our frontcourt this season.”

Apr 22, 2009 - San Diego, CA, USA - JEREMY TYLER, a 6 foot 11 high school junior says he will skip his senior year to play professionally in Europe. The 17-year old would become the first U.S.-born player to leave high school early to play pro overseas. He is expected to return in two years when he is projected to be a top pick in the 2011 NBA draft. PICTURED: JEREMY TYLER works out at California State University, San Diego Photo via Newscom

Stephon Marbury to China for 3 years

The AP reports:

Former NBA All-Star Stephon Marbury has agreed to three more years with a Chinese basketball team, whose owners will set up a company to produce and sell his line of athletic apparel and shoes, the team said Thursday.

Marbury played 15 games last season with Shanxi Zhongyu of the Chinese Basketball Association. The point guard was a fan favorite in the rustbelt city of Taiyuan, showing none of the defiant personality that had alienated management, teammates and fans in the U.S.

Marbury, 33, will play two more years and may be asked to become an assistant coach in the third, Shanxi said in an announcement on its website.

Jan 31, 2010 - Taiyuan, Shanxi, China - STEPHON MARBURY of Shanxi Zhongyu controls the ball at a match against Dongguan Marco Polo during the CBA 09/10 Season, in Taiyuan, north Chinas Shanxi province, January 31, 2010. Cedric Simmons made a winning free-throw in Dongguan Marco Polos 102-101 win over Shanxi Zhongyu on Sunday, spoiling Stephon Marburys debut in the Chinese Basketball Association league (CBA). Marbury had 15 points, 7-out-of-11 in the field and 0-out-of-6 on three-pointers, eight assists, four steals and four rebounds in 28 minutes.

Memphis Grizzlies Majority Owner Michael Heisley issued the following statement today regarding the death of Memphis native and former Grizzlies player Lorenzen Wright.

“We are deeply saddened by the tragic death of Lorenzen Wright. We lost a member of the Grizzlies family. Lorenzen delighted fans on the court with his passion and off the court with his generosity in a Memphis community that watched him grow throughout his playing career at Booker T. Washington High School, the University of Memphis and the NBA.

“In his five seasons with the Grizzlies, Lorenzen played an integral role in guiding this franchise to three consecutive playoff appearances and was a member of the inaugural Memphis Grizzlies team in 2001.

“On behalf of the entire Memphis Grizzlies organization, we would like to express our sincerest condolences to Lorenzen’s family during this difficult time.”

Wright, a 13-year NBA veteran with the Grizzlies (2001-06), Los Angeles Clippers (1996-99), Atlanta Hawks (1999-2001, 2006-08), Sacramento Kings (2007-08) and Cleveland Cavaliers (2008-09), averaged 9.4 points and 7.1 rebounds in 336 games with the Grizzlies. He ranks in the club’s all-time Top 10 in rebounds (2,386, 4th), blocks (250, 7th), games (7th), minutes (8,883, 8th) and points (3,148, 10th) and still holds the club’s all-time single-game record of 26 rebounds, set on November 4, 2001 vs. Dallas.

Andrew Bynum has right knee surgery

Los Angeles Lakers center Andrew Bynum underwent successful arthroscopic surgery to repair a tear of the lateral meniscus in his right knee, it was announced today.

The surgery was performed in New York by Dr. David Altchek.

Bynum, who suffered the tear in Game 6 of the Lakers’ First Round series with Oklahoma City, started each of the team’s 23 postseason games despite the injury, averaging 8.6 points, 6.9 rebounds and 1.57 blocks in 24.4 minutes.

In 65 regular season contests, Bynum averaged a career-best 15.0 points on .570 shooting from the field, 8.3 rebounds and 1.45 blocks in 30.4 minutes.

Bynum is expected to be available on a limited basis at the start of training camp and make a full recovery by the start of the regular season.

Lorenzen Wright found dead

The Memphis Commercial Appeal reports:

Law enforcement officials have found the body of missing Memphis basketball star Lorenzen Wright in a wooded area at Hacks Cross and Winchester in southeast Memphis.

A law enforcement source confirmed the body was that of Wright, who has been missing since July 19, though the Memphis Police Department won’t officially comment.

The body was found by someone who called police today. note: This page will be updated later today.

Jul 28, 2010 - Los Angeles, California, USA - Police in Collierville, Tennessee, are investigating the disappearance of a former professional basketball player and say 'there is a high level of concern' in the search to find him. LORENZEN WRIGHT, 34, who played 13 seasons in the NBA, has not been seen or heard from since July 18 when he visited his ex-wife and their children in Collierville, near Memphis, investigators said. PICTURED: NBA Basketball. 20 Dec 2004: Lorenzen Wright of the Memphis Grizzlies during the Grizzlies 82-72 victory over the Los Angeles Lakers at Staples Center in Los Angeles, CA.

Clippers re-sign Rasual Butler

Clippers re-sign Rasual Butler

The Los Angeles Clippers today re-signed free agent forward Rasual Butler. Per team policy, terms of the deal were not announced.

Butler, who averaged a career-high 11.9 points to go with 2.9 rebounds and 33.0 minutes in 82 games played with Los Angeles last season, also connected on 41 percent of his field goals on the year. He was originally acquired by the Clippers along with cash considerations from the New Orleans Hornets on August 12, 2009 in exchange for a conditional second round draft pick in 2016.

On April 4, 2010 against the New York Knicks, the eight-year NBA veteran established a new Clippers’ franchise record for most three-pointers made in a season, surpassing Terry Dehere (1995-96) when he knocked down his 140th three-pointer of the 2009-10 campaign. In addition to his career mark in scoring, Butler finished the season with career-highs in three-pointers made (145) as well as attempted (432 – also a Clippers’ franchise record).

Butler was originally drafted by the Miami Heat in the second round (53rd overall) of the 2002 NBA Draft. Over his career, he has tallied 8.8 points and 2.7 rebounds while connecting on 40 percent of his field goals and 36 percent of his three-point attempts.

Rockets trade David Andersen to Raptors

The Toronto Raptors announced Wednesday they have acquired centre David Andersen and cash considerations from the Houston Rockets in exchange for a 2015 protected second-round pick obtained from the Los Angeles Clippers as part of the Hassan Adams trade January 7, 2009.

Andersen, a 6-foot-11 native of Carlton, Australia, appeared in 63 games last season for the Rockets, averaging 5.8 points and 3.3 rebounds during his rookie NBA campaign. He posted a career-high 19 points November 15, 2009 against the Los Angeles Lakers and reached double figures in scoring 12 times.

“David is a skilled big that gives us some insurance at the backup centre position,” said Raptors President and General Manager Bryan Colangelo. “He will also bring a veteran presence and savvy to a relatively young team.”

Andersen was selected 37th overall by the Atlanta Hawks in the 2002 NBA Draft. He remained overseas to claim three Euroleague titles with Virtus Bolonga (2001) and CSKA Moscow (2006 and 2008). During the 2004-05 season he was named first-team All-Euroleague after averaging 12.4 points and a career-best 7.0 rebounds playing for CSKA Moscow. In 2007-08 he averaged a career-best 12.8 points during CSKA’s Euroleague championship run. Anderson posted strong numbers again in 2008-09 with Regal FC Barcelona, averaging 11.1 points and shooting .554 from the field in 23 games. He helped FC Barcelona win the ACB Spanish National Championship and a berth in the Euroleague Final Four.

In nine seasons abroad Anderson won four Russian National Championships, two Italian League Championships and an ACB Spanish National title. He also competed twice in the Summer Olympics (2004 and 2008) for the Australian National Team. Andersen’s draft rights were traded to Houston on July 14, 2009. editor says: Andersen is a good backup center.

February 17, 2010 Milwaukee, WI. Bradley Center..Houston Rockets David Andersen plays some defense on Bucks Andrew Bogut , Andersen had 7 points coming off the Rockets bench..Milwaukee Bucks lost to the Houston Rockets 99-127. Mike McGinnis/CSM.

Timberwolves sign Nikola Pekovic

The Minnesota Timberwolves today announced the team has signed center Nikola Pekovic. Per team policy, terms of the contract offer were not disclosed.

“We are excited to have Nikola join the Minnesota Timberwolves,” said David Kahn, Timberwolves President of Basketball Operations. “Nikola has been regarded as the best center in Europe for the past few seasons and will be a tremendous addition to our club. He is a tough, hard-nosed player who brings an added dimension of physicality to our team. We look forward to him bringing his talents to the United States and the NBA.”

Pekovic, 24, has played for Panathinaikos Athens for the past two seasons. This past year, the 6-11 center from Serbia averaged 14.8 points on 60.7% shooting from the field, 3.5 rebounds and 16.8 minutes in 13 games in the Euroleague. In 26 games for Panathinaikos in the Greek League in 2009-10, Pekovic averaged 12.9 points on 72.5% shooting, 3.8 rebounds and 21.9 minutes. He helped lead Panathinaikos to the Euroleague championship in 2009, the Greek League championship in 2009 and 2010 and the Greek Basketball Cup in 2009. Pekovic was named to the All-Euroleague First Team in 2009.

The 31st overall pick in the 2008 NBA Draft by Minnesota, Pekovic has played professionally overseas for five seasons. Prior to playing for Panathinaikos, he was with Partizan Belgrade from 2005-08. Pekovic helped lead Partizan to three Serbian League championships (2006, 2007, 2008), two Adriatic League championships (2007, 2008) and the Serbian Cup in 2008. He was the Adriatic League Final Four MVP in 2008.

Heat re-sign Kenny Hasbrouck

The Miami Heat announced today that they have re-signed guard Kenny Hasbrouck. Per club policy, terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Hasbrouck played in five games (five starts) for the Heat’s 2010 summer league squad, averaging 13.6 points, 2.4 rebounds, 2.4 assists and 28.6 minutes, while shooting 49.0 percent from the field and 45.0 percent from three-point range.

Hasbrouck was previously signed by the Heat to a 10-day contract on March 16, 2010 and then was signed to a second 10-day contract on March 26, 2010. He re-signed for the remainder of the season on April 5, 2010, but did not appear in a game for the team last season. Before signing with Miami, he appeared in 10 games (nine starts) with the Rio Grande Valley Vipers of the NBA Development League averaging 16.9 points, 2.9 assists, 2.4 rebounds and 1.60 steals in 32.3 minutes of action, leading the team to a 7-3 record, while shooting 50.4 percent from the field, 38.1 percent from three-point range and 80.6 percent from the free throw line.

Blazers trying to trade Rudy Fernandez

Jason Quick of The Oregonian reports:

Blazers trying to trade Rudy Fernandez

At the urging of Rudy Fernandez and his agent, the Trail Blazers have engaged in accelerated trade discussions to deal the disgruntled, once-popular shooting guard to one of three Eastern Conference teams.

Boston, Chicago and New York are all in the running to land the 6-foot-6 Spaniard, who set an NBA rookie record two seasons ago by making 159 three-pointers.

Fernandez, 25, is unhappy in Portland because of limited playing time behind All-Star Brandon Roy and because of the playing style of coach Nate McMillan, who primarily used Fernandez as an outside shooter, not the playmaker Fernandez believes he can be in the NBA.

Fernandez has two years remaining on his contract, which will pay him $1.25 million next season. The Blazers acquired Fernandez, along with James Jones, from Phoenix for cash considerations on draft night 2007. Fernandez signed with Portland in July 2008, ending his seven-year career in the  Spanish ACB League.

rudy fernandez on trading block nba

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