Archive for February, 2011

The New Jersey Nets have acquired two-time All-Star guard Deron Williams from the Utah Jazz in exchange for guard Devin Harris, forward Derrick Favors, two first round draft picks (Nets 2011, Golden State 2012) and cash considerations, Nets General Manager Billy King announced today.  


“We are very excited to add a player the caliber of Deron Williams to our roster,” said King.  “He is one of the premier point guards in the NBA, and his skill and talent level will bolster our franchise as we continue to build towards our goal of becoming a championship-caliber team.”


Williams, 6’3”, 209, was selected third overall in the first round of the 2005 NBA Draft by Utah.  The Illinois product is currently in his sixth NBA season and holds career averages of 17.3 points, 3.2 rebounds, 9.1 assists and 1.0 steals in 35.6 minutes per game.  In 439 career games, including 406 starts, he has shot .466 (2,725-5,848) from the field, .358 (511-1,427) from three-point range and .808 (1,615-1,998) from the free throw line.  In 44 career postseason games, Williams has averaged 21.1 points, 3.7 rebounds, 9.6 assists and 1.2 steals 40.4 minutes, while shooting .458 (308-672) from the field and .796 (238-299) from the line.  Williams is a two-time All Star (2010 and 2011), made the All-NBA Second Team in 2008 and 2010, won a gold medal as part of the Team  USA at the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing, was a member of the All-Rookie First Team in 2006 and became only the third player in NBA history to have 1500+ points and 800+ assists while shooting .500+ from the field in a single season in 2007-08 (Magic Johnson, 1986-87, 1988-89 and Kevin Johnson, 1988-89).  He ranked fourth on Utah’s career assists list (4,003), fifth for three-pointers made (511) and fourth for three-pointers attempted (1,427).  In 53 games with the Jazz this season, Williams averaged a career-best 21.3 points, 3.9 rebounds, 9.7 assists (3rd in the NBA) and 1.2 steals in 37.9 minutes.  He also tallied 27 double-doubles (7th in the NBA). 


Harris, a 6’3”, 190-pound guard currently in his seventh NBA season, is averaging 15.0 points, 2.4 rebounds, a career-high 7.6 assists (ranked 11th) and 1.06 steals while shooting 42.5% from the field in 54 games.  The Wisconsin native was acquired by the Nets on February 19, 2008 from Dallas as part of a multi-player trade.  In 2008-09, Harris enjoyed his best NBA season, averaging 21.3 points and 6.9 assists, while being named to the 2009 Eastern Conference All-Star Team. In parts of four seasons with the Nets, Harris played in 212 games, averaging 17.7 points, 6.9 assists and 3.0 rebounds per game.  He is currently on five Nets individual career Top 10 lists, 10th in three-point field goals made at 188, 9th in three-point field goals attempted at 644, 9th in free throws made at 1,403, 10th in free throws attempted at 1,366 and 6th in assists at 1,473. In 463 career games, including 329 starts, Harris has posted averages of 13.2 points and 5.0 assists per contest. 


Favors, selected third overall by the Nets in 2010 NBA Draft, has played in 56 games, making 23 starts for New Jersey in his rookie season.  The 6’10” forward out of Georgia Tech has averages of 6.3 points and 5.3 rebounds in 19.5 minutes per game. 

Mark Murphy of the Boston Herald reports:

Celtics uncertain if Marquis Daniels will play again this season

Though the Celtics are no closer to knowing when or if Marquis Daniels will return to the team this season, at least the forward may be nearing the end of his meetings with specialists.

His agent, Mark Bartelstein, said yesterday that Daniels plans to meet with the Celtics medical staff in a week to discuss a plan of action for treating his bruised spinal cord.

Daniels has met with three specialists, and over the next week plans to meet with two more doctors for additional opinions.

Chris Dempsey of the Denver Post reports:

Nuggets apologize to Billups after trading him

It’s not every day — or any day, for that matter — that a player gets a personal apology from the front office that traded him.

But then, Chauncey Billups wasn’t just any player for the Nuggets.

His inclusion in the trade to the New York Knicks was the name that really stung for Nuggets fans. Billups grew up here, played basketball at George Washington High School and the University of Colorado and never wastes an opportunity to show his love for the city.

That’s why, said Nuggets executives Josh Kroenke and Masai Ujiri, it was painful to let him go. And that’s why the duo opened their Tuesday evening news conference in an unusual manner.

“I want to offer a personal apology to the Billups family,” Kroenke said. “They mean the world to me personally, and I know that Chauncey means everything to Denver. And when I say Denver, I mean just Denver basketball on every level. He is Denver basketball. He was a high school star here, he was a college star here, he was a professional star here. It was an incredibly tough decision to include him in this trade.”

Carmelo Anthony traded to Knicks in 3-team deal

The Denver Nuggets today acquired F Wilson Chandler, G Raymond Felton, F Danilo Gallinari, C Kosta Koufos and C Timofey Mozgov as part of a three-team trade with the New York Knicks and Minnesota Timberwolves.

The Nuggets also received New York’s first-round draft pick in 2014, second-round picks in 2012 and 2013 and cash considerations. The second-round picks were acquired by the Knicks from Golden State last summer.

In exchange, the Nuggets sent F Carmelo Anthony, G Chauncey Billups, G Anthony Carter, F Renaldo Balkman and F Shelden Williams to New York, which traded C Eddy Curry and F Anthony Randolph to Minnesota and will get F Corey Brewer from the Timberwolves.

“Carmelo has been an important part of the best seven-year stretch in Denver Nuggets history. We have shared many special moments and were fortunate to watch him grow into an All-Star and one of the league’s top players,” Nuggets team president Josh Kroenke said. “However, Carmelo made it very clear early in the season that he wasn’t willing to re-commit to the organization and wanted to pursue other opportunities in basketball and life. At that point, we decided it was imperative that we do what was in the best interest of the Denver Nuggets and our fans. We wish Carmelo the best in his career and sincerely thank him for what he’s helped us accomplish.

“I would also like to personally thank Chauncey Billups, Anthony Carter, Renaldo Balkman and Shelden Williams for their contributions on and off court as members of the Denver Nuggets. I have gotten especially close with Chauncey and Anthony during their time here in Denver and their contributions to this organization and city goes far beyond wins and losses. They will truly be missed.”

Three of the four players acquired by the Nuggets are former first-round draft picks; Felton was taken fifth overall in 2005, Chandler 23rd in 2007 and Gallinari sixth in 2008.

Chandler, 6-8, 225, averaged a career-high 16.4 points and 5.9 rebounds in 51 games with the Knicks this season. The 23-year-old has scored at least 20 points 16 times and recorded five double-doubles.

Felton, 6-1, 205, is averaging a career highs in points (17.1), assists (9.0) and steals (1.8) while starting all 54 games in his sixth NBA season. Felton, 26, is fifth in the NBA in assists per game and he joins Utah’s Deron Williams as the only two NBA players averaging at least 17 points and 9 assists.

Gallinari, 6-10, 225, is averaging a career-high 15.9 points and shooting .893 from the free-throw line (sixth in the NBA) in 2010-11. The 22-year-old was second in the league last season with 186 three-pointers.

Koufos, 7-0, 265, appeared in 39 games with Minnesota this season, averaging 2.7 points and 2.5 rebounds in limited minutes. Mozgov, 7-1, 250, averaged 4.0 points and 3.1 rebounds in just 13.5 minutes as a part-time starter for the Knicks. The 24-year-old rookie spent the previous six seasons playing professionally in his native Russia.

“We are excited about the talented young players we acquired in this trade,” Kroenke said. “They were valuable contributors to one of the most improved teams in the NBA this season. We are looking forward to making another postseason push. Our goals remain the same: improve every day, play hard every game and bring an NBA championship to Denver.”

John Reid of the New Orleans Times-Picayune reports:

Chris Paul wants to play without knee brace

New Orleans Hornets point guard Chris Paul said he is trying to move toward not having to wear a brace to protect his surgically repaired left knee.

With the brace, Paul said he doesn’t have the range of motion he desires. In some recent games before the All-Star break, Paul did not appear to have the quick burst to beat defenders to the lane.

He’s worn a brace since the start of the regular season, but did not play with it on during Sunday’s All-Star Game in Los Angeles or during road games last week against Golden State and Portland.

Pistons plan to keep Tayshaun Prince

The Detroit Free Press reports:

Pistons plan to keep Tayshaun Prince

Detroit Pistons president Joe Dumars confirmed today what Tayshaun Prince told the media Monday night; he isn’t going to get traded by Thursday’s NBA deadline.

“I ain’t going nowhere so what difference does it make?” the veteran forward said. “I’m not getting traded. How do I know? Because I know.

“I’ve been here all nine years, through the good times and the bad. Never once have I walked in and said I needed to go or anything like that. I’ve stuck through it.”

Prince’s contract is up at the end of the season, and Dumars said he’d like to re-sign him because of his versatility and leadership.

Bulls trade James Johnson to Raptors

Bulls trade James Johnson to Raptors

The Toronto Raptors announced Tuesday they have acquired forward James Johnson from the Chicago Bulls in exchange for a 2011 first-round draft pick. The Raptors received the pick from the Miami Heat this past July (Bosh sign and trade).

“James Johnson is a strong, athletic and versatile small forward that we have had our eye on dating back to the 2009 NBA Draft,” said Raptors President and General Manager Bryan Colangelo.

Johnson, 6-foot-9, 245 pounds was a first-round selection by the Bulls (16th overall) in the 2009 NBA Draft. He has appeared in 78 games (with 11 starts), averaging 3.8 points, 1.9 rebounds and 11.3 minutes. He posted a career-best 20 points in a career-high 43 minutes at Miami on March 12, 2010.

Johnson saw action in eight games recently with the Iowa Energy in the NBA D-League. He averaged 19.3 points, 8.9 rebounds, 4.3 assists and 2.5 blocks in 32.1 minutes.

A product of Wake Forest, Johnson averaged 14.8 points, 8.3 rebounds and 1.4 blocks in 61 collegiate games with the Demon Deacons. He earned Freshman All-American honours and was runner-up for the Atlantic Coast Conference Rookie of the Year in 2008.

The Raptors are in Charlotte tonight to face the Bobcats before returning home to play host to Chicago on Wednesday. Game time is 7 p.m. ET (Sportsnet One/Sportsnet Radio The FAN 590).

Johnson is expected to arrive in Toronto on Wednesday.

Read fan reaction and discuss your own opinion in this forum topic.

Tyreke Evans out at least three weeks

Jason Jones of the Sacramento Bee reports:

Tyreke Evans out at least three weeks

The Kings will be without Tyreke Evans for at least three weeks because of plantar fasciitis in his left foot, the team announced this afternoon.

Evans underwent the first of three extra corporeal shockwave treatments on his left foot after being re-examined by Dr. Richard Ferkel in Los Angeles following Monday’s MRI. Evans will wear a walking boot and be re-examined after the treatments.

Evans leads the Kings in scoring, assists and steals. The Kings are just 1-6 in games that Evans has missed this season.

The injury has bothered Evans most of the season but became too much to deal with Feb. 13 in Phoenix. Evans finished that game but hasn’t played since.

TMZ reports:

Miami Heat superstar Chris Bosh has a brand new reason to watch VH1 — TMZ has learned his baby mama Allison Mathis will be selected as a cast member on the next season of “Basketball Wives.”

Sources close to the production tell us … Allison completed three rounds of interviews with show execs recently and was so impressive … producers will be offering her a spot on Season 3.

TMZ reports:

Carmelo’s trade to the New York Knicks isn’t even official yet, but Sandy Levine, owner of the Carnegie Deli, tells TMZ they are already launching the new Melo Sandwich and it is packed with everything you could ever want on a sandwich:

– Pastrami
– Corned Beef
– Salami
– Bacon
– Tomato
– Russian dressing
– On rye bread

The sandwich will run you a cool $21.95 and that price was chosen for a reason — if they sell around 3,000,000 of them … it equals the $65 million contract Melo is likely to sign with the Knicks.

Spurs sign Steve Novak to second 10-day contract

The San Antonio Spurs today announced they have signed forward Steve Novak to a second 10-day contract.  Novak signed his first 10-day contract with the Spurs on February 8 becoming the eighth call-up of the 2010-11 NBA Development League season.

Novak, a 6-10 forward, appeared in five games for the Spurs, averaging 2.6 points in 4.3 minutes per game, while shooting .444 (4-9) from the field and .429 (3-7) from three-point territory.

Prior to joining the Spurs, Novak appeared in two games with the Reno Bighorns, averaging 18.5 points and 6.5 rebounds in 29.5 minutes, while shooting .684 (13-19) from the field and .643 (9-14) from three-point range. Earlier this season, Novak averaged 1.6 points in 2.6 minutes in seven games with the Dallas Mavericks. Overall, he has appeared in 207 career games with Houston, the L.A. Clippers, Dallas and San Antonio with averages of 3.9 points in 9.8 minutes per game. For his career, he is shooting .435 (293-673) from the field and .406 (194-478) from three-point land.

The Portland Trail Blazers recalled guard Armon Johnson from the NBA Development League’s Idaho Stampede, it was announced today by General Manager Rich Cho.

In nine games (one start) with the Stampede, Johnson notched averages of 18.2 points (59.7% FG), 4.2 rebounds and 3.0 assists in 27.6 minutes. He netted more than 20 points in five games.

Johnson, 21, is averaging 3.1 points, 1.1 rebounds, 1.3 assists and 8.1 minutes in 28 games this season with the Trail Blazers.

Portland selected Johnson in the second round (34th pick overall) of the 2010 NBA Draft out of the University of Nevada-Reno.

Nuggets trade Carmelo Anthony to Knicks

Benjamin Hochman and Chris Dempsey of the Denver Post report:

The Nuggets traded Melo to the New York Knicks tonight, a league source said. Denver gets Wilson Chandler, Raymond Felton, Danilo Gallinari, Timofey Mozgov, the Knicks 2014 first-round draft pick, the Warriors’ 2012 second-round pick, the Warriors’ 2013 second-round pick and $3 million in cash.

Anthony will go to New York, along with Chauncey Billups, Shelden Williams, Anthony Carter and Renaldo Balkman.

The Memphis Grizzlies have signed swingman Rodney Carney to a 10-day contract, Grizzlies General Manager and Vice President of Basketball Operations Chris Wallace announced today.

A four-year star at the University of Memphis, the 6-7, 205-pound guard/forward returns to the Bluff City after averaging 5.0 points on .421 shooting (45-of-107 FG), including a career-best .459 mark from three-point range (17-of-37 3FG), in 13.2 minutes in 25 games for the Golden State Warriors earlier this season.  The Warriors waived Carney on Jan. 4.

Currently in his fifth NBA season, the 26-year-old owns career averages of 6.0 points and 2.0 rebounds on .422 shooting in 15.5 minutes in 297 games (48 starts) with the Warriors, Minnesota Timberwolves and Philadelphia 76ers.

Carney finished his collegiate career with the Tigers ranked third in school history in scoring (1,901 points), second in games played (133) and first in three-pointers made (287).  In his senior season (2005-06), Carney posted 17.2 points and 4.3 rebounds, earning the Conference USA Player of the Year Award and leading the Tigers to an Elite Eight appearance in the NCAA Tournament. 

The Los Angeles Clippers today announced that they have recalled rookie guard Willie Warren from the Bakersfield Jam of the NBA Development League.

Warren, 21, was assigned to Bakersfield on Feb. 2 and appeared in six games with the Jam, averaging 21.0 points, 7.0 assists 5.3 rebounds and 1.0 steals per game while shooting 50 percent from the field and 46 percent from 3-point land. The Jam went 5-1 with Warren in the lineup from Feb. 4 – 16.

Warren has appeared in 14 games with the Clippers this season and is averaging 2.2 points and 1.4 assists in 7.8 minutes per game.

The former Oklahoma University standout was selected by the Clippers in the second round (54th overall pick) of the 2010 NBA Draft.

Troy “Escalade” Jackson, the brother of former NBA point guard Mark Jackson and a beloved member of the streetball and general basketball community, died this weekend.

Mere days earlier here in Los Angeles myself and many others were happy to catch up with Escalade at parties during NBA All-Star weekend. With close friend and fellow streetballer “The Professor” by his side, Escalade, given that nickname due to his large size, seemed his usual happy self. I only hung out with him briefly as we caught up with each other after not being face-to-face for many months. It’s shocking to be with someone one night and have them be gone the next.

Escalade dying is beyond sad. I can honestly say that everyone in basketball who knew him, loved him. In a sport and world filled with huge egos, Escalade was genuinely nice, and impossible to dislike. He’ll truly be missed.

More on Troy “Escalade” Jackson’s death:

“Our hearts are heavy today and we are deeply saddened by the passing of a teammate, friend, and inspiration. Today, the world of streetball lost its ambassador, and the world of basketball lost a great entertainer. Escalade led both his life and our team with a joy that can never be replaced. Our deepest condolences go out to his family. We ask his fans around the world to keep all those dear to him in their prayers,” said Demetrius Spencer, CEO and Commissioner of Ball Up.

Troy “Escalade” Jackson has been a big brother and member of the Murray family since we were kids. He was always the most positive, giving, and caring person you could be around. He never forgot a face. And, anyone who met him never forgot him. His mother was his biggest fan and support system, and his brother Mark was the most supportive big brother, always proud to tell everyone about his little BIG brother!!! If you did not get the opportunity to meet Troy “Escalade” Jackson, you truly missed out on meeting one of the GREATEST “Wonders” of the World!!! Troy, you have left us sad and full of hurt. But HEAVEN already has won with the arrival of such a BEAUTIFUL person, with a HEART and SOUL that will live with me and others around the world!! You changed my life ONCE, and you just changed my life AGAIN!!! I LOVE YOU BIG BRO!!! Cameron Murray Partner of BallUp and Friend

Brother to NBA Veteran Mark Jackson, Troy “Escalade” Jackson, named one of the 50 greatest playground legends by Slam Magazine, stood at an impressive largeness in person of 6’10” tall, and weighed just under 400 pounds, was just as big in personality and heart. Troy Jackson was born in Queens NY and attended University of Louisville on a basketball scholarship. In addition to playing in 3 NCAA tournaments, among Es’s accomplishments are being recognized as one of the 20 most popular athletes in Louisville history. Troy was a former Harlem Globe Trotter, Current Ball Up Player and Ambassador to the world of Streeball.

The AP reports:

Police in an Atlanta suburb say New Orleans Hornets’ backup point guard Jarrett Jack has been arrested and charged with drunken driving.

Snellville Police Chief Roy Whitehead said in an e-mail Monday the 27-year-old former Georgia Tech star was pulled over early Sunday by an officer who clocked him at 66 mph in a 45-mph zone. Police say Jack’s Mercedes was also weaving.

Dwyane Wade hurt in All-Star Game

Michael Wallace of ESPN reports:

Miami Heat guard Dwyane Wade injured his right ankle in the third quarter of Sunday’s All-Star Game and did not return.

Wade sustained the injury midway through the quarter when he landed awkwardly on guard Deron Williams’ foot. Wade, a starting guard for the Eastern Conference team, had scored 14 points in the game before he limped off the court after East coach Doc Rivers called a timeout with 5:04 left in the quarter. He also had four rebounds and two assists in 21 minutes of the East’s 148-143 loss to the West.

The AP reports:

Paul Pierce is saving money at All-Star game

Paul Pierce is glad to be back home for the All-Star game, even though the Boston Celtics star is hearing some boos.

“To come back here for a second time and play in an All-Star game really means a lot—just to save money on plane tickets and hotels for my mom and my aunts,” he said, laughing.

Pierce is from nearby Inglewood, where he used to sneak into the Forum growing up to see the Lakers play.

The boos Pierce has heard are reminiscent of Kobe Bryant getting booed when the All-Star game was played in Philadelphia, where he was a high school star.

“When you play for L.A.’s biggest rival, it’s tough getting booed by the fans. But I’m sure if Kobe Bryant was from Boston, he’d get booed, too, if he went back there,” Pierce said.

Bucks assign Larry Sanders to D-League

The Milwaukee Bucks have assigned rookie forward Larry Sanders to the Fort Wayne Mad Ants (Indiana) of the NBA Development League (D-League), General Manager John Hammond announced today. Fort Wayne is led by Head Coach Joey Meyer, who previously coached the Bucks D-League affiliate in Tulsa. Sanders will meet with the team today in Fort Wayne and his first game with the Mad Ants will be Tuesday against Springfield.

“This is an opportunity for Larry to receive regular minutes and continue his skill development,” Hammond said. “We’re looking forward to seeing his progress as he works with Coach Meyer and his Fort Wayne teammates.”

Sanders, 22, was drafted by the Bucks with the 15th overall selection out of Virginia Commonwealth University in the 2010 NBA Draft. He has appeared in 36 games this season (eight starts) and averaged 4.1 points, 2.9 rebounds and 1.2 blocks. He is tied for the NBA single-game high of eight blocks this season and his 44 blocks leads all first-year players.

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