Archive for July 22nd, 2011

The NBA and National Basketball Players Association completed the 2010-11 NBA season audit of Basketball Related Income (BRI) and player compensation.  Among the results from the audit sent to InsideHoops.com:

- BRI increased by 4.8% from $3.643 billion in 2009-10 to $3.817 billion in 2010-11.

- Total player compensation also increased by 4.8% from $2.076 billion in 2009-10 to $2.176 billion in 2010-11.  This marks the sixth consecutive season that player compensation increased under the expired CBA.

- Total player compensation equaled 57% of BRI.

- The average player salary for the 2010-11 season was $5.15 million. Over the six-year term of the expired CBA, the average player salary increased by a total of 16%.

Read NBA fan opinion or share your own views in this forum topic.

Miami Heat promote Nick Arison to CEO

The Miami HEAT today announced the promotion of Nick Arison from Vice President, Basketball Operations to the newly created position of Chief Executive Officer. In his new role, Arison will oversee the day-to-day operations of the franchise and report directly to Micky Arison, who will remain the team’s Managing General Partner and Governor at the NBA’s Board of Governor meetings. Nick Arison has been a limited partner of the team and has served as the alternate governor since the 2005-06 season. The move is a natural progression for Nick, who has grown up with the HEAT. His grandfather, Ted Arison, was one of the team’s original founders and his father, Micky, bought the controlling share of the franchise and was named Managing General Partner on Feb. 13, 1995. Nick first started working for the organization as a team attendant for four seasons from 1995 through 1999, and upon his graduation from Duke University became a full-time staff member in 2003.

“This is something Nick has been working towards his whole life. He’s more prepared for this job than I was at his age when I became CEO of Carnival,” expressed Micky Arison. “I have the utmost confidence that Nick will continue to lead the HEAT as a model NBA franchise for many years to come.”

Nick Arison has served the HEAT in a variety of positions over the years, learning the business from the ground up. After first joining the HEAT as a team attendant and later serving summer internships in the Arena Operations, Community Affairs, and Sales and Marketing departments, he became a full-time staff member on the business side in 2003 as an Account Manager, Premium Partnerships. In 2006, he was promoted to Director, Corporate and Premium Services where he oversaw the Account Management Team. Prior to the 2008-09 season he was named Vice President, Basketball Operations where he worked directly with HEAT President Pat Riley and Assistant General Manager/Senior Vice President, Basketball Operations Andy Elisburg in overseeing the basketball side of the organization and played an active role in the recruiting and procurement of talent.

“I have been working for the Arison family for 16 years,” said Riley. “The Miami HEAT is truly a family organization and that is what makes it a desirable franchise to work for. The HEAT are the Arisons. Like his grandfather Ted and father Micky, Nick is an extraordinary, special young man and will serve the HEAT in a highly professional manner as those men did. Congratulations to Nick. He has earned it.”

“Micky, Nick and I have discussed this possibility for the last year, so I am not surprised at all by Micky’s decision. Nick has worked very hard over the last eight years and is prepared for this opportunity,” continued Riley. “As far as the decision making process goes concerning coaches, training staff and players, that will remain my responsibility as it has the last 16 years. Over the years, we as a front office have always come to a consensus, along with Micky and Nick, on personnel moves and Nick has played a major role in those transactions. I will continue to support Nick in all ways possible”.

In addition to his responsibilities with the HEAT, Nick served as a member of the United States Men’s Senior National Team support staff from 2004-08. He assisted with the day-to-day operations for USA Basketball’s bronze medal winning team at the 2004 Olympics, the bronze medal winning 2006 World Championship team, the 2007 gold medal winning FIBA Americans Championship team and the 2008 Olympic Team which captured the gold medal in Beijing, China.

“Nick has certainly earned the respect of the basketball community through his leadership in the operations of the Miami HEAT,” said Duke University head men’s basketball coach Mike Krzyzewski. “I’m thrilled for the organization in recognizing his hard work ethic, lofty visions, and commitment to the profession. I consider Nick and his family to be very close friends and we’ve been fortunate to share several championship experiences together at Duke University (2001 NCAA Championship) and with the U.S. National Team (2008 Beijing Olympics). As the CEO of the HEAT, I am positive that Nick will continue to help lead the franchise towards its goal of winning another NBA Championship as well.”

Arison began his basketball career while attending Duke University. He spent four years as a team manager of the Blue Devils men’s basketball team and was named the head team manager during his senior year. Over that four-year span, Arison became the only team manager in Atlantic Coast Conference history to be a part of four straight ACC Championships and was a manager for Duke’s 2001 NCAA Championship team.

“I’m very excited and thankful for this opportunity and look forward to a seamless transition in my new position,” said Nick Arison. “Pat Riley is one of the greatest coaches and leaders in NBA history and will continue to run the basketball side of the team and Eric Woolworth the business side, just as they have for my father.”

Jerry Zgoda of the Minneapolis Star Tribune reports:

Rick Adelman

According to league sources, former Houston coach Rick Adelman will be the fourth candidate to interview with the Wolves when he comes to town tomorrow to see David Kahn and owner Glen Taylor.

Adelman all along has looked like the dream hire who’d solve a lot of the Wolves’ problems, if he’s interested.

Well, it looks like he is now, at least enough to listen.

Why is he the best they can do with this hire:

- He has a track record, and a .605 winning percentage (945-616) in 20 seasons with Portland, Golden State, Sacramento and Houston. His Portland teams made the NBA finals twice and his Sacramento teams pushed the Lakers to the brink out West.

- Believer in a passing offense similar in many ways to what Kurt Rambis believes, he has shown a willingness for his teams to play fast. Those Kings teams with Bibby, Webber, Vlade were fun — and fast — to watch.

- Most importantly perhaps is this: He has known Kevin Love for years and his hiring would be a BIG step toward convincing Love to sign a long-term contract extension.

InsideHoops.com editor says: I’m an Adelman fan. I want this guy coaching my team. Though, the core Wolves parts are so young, they have a lot of growing to do before any real success is possible. They primarily need a skills teacher. And permission slips to see PG-13 movies.

Read NBA fan opinion or share your own views in this forum topic.

Jerry Zgoda of the Minneapolis Star Tribune reports:

Bernie Bickerstaff

Portland Trail Blazers assistant coach Bernie Bickerstaff is scheduled on Friday to become the third candidate to interview for the Timberwolves’ head coaching job.

President of basketball operations David Kahn and owner Glen Taylor interviewed former Timberwolves guard Terry Porter on Monday and former Atlanta Hawks coach Mike Woodson on Tuesday. They are expected to interview Don Nelson and perhaps one or two other candidates this weekend or early next week.

Bickerstaff, 67, owns a .445 winning percentage (415-517) in 13 seasons as head coach with Seattle, Denver, Washington and Charlotte. He last was a head coach for the Bobcats in 2007, when his team went 33-49.

He also has worked as an NBA general manager and team president.

Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald reports:

Alonzo Mourning

Alonzo Mourning’s 15th-annual charity weekend will be missing its most popular event: the Zo’s Groove basketball game. The game was not scheduled this year because the ongoing lockout prohibits interaction between team employees and players.

Mourning serves as the Heat’s vice president/player programs.

As a result, no NBA players are scheduled to appear at any of the events.

Jeff Zillgitt of USA Today reports:

Los Angeles Clippers forward Al-Farouq Aminu wants to play basketball next season. But if he doesn’t, he isn’t overly concerned about his financial situation.

Aminu, a rookie last season, is one of four clients of agent Raymond Brothers who spread their 2010-11 NBA salaries over 18 or 24 months to continue receiving paychecks if the league-imposed lockout forces the cancellation of games.

zach randolph

Memphis Grizzlies forward Zach Randolph, Dallas Mavericks forward Caron Butler and Detroit Pistons guard Ben Gordon, all Brothers clients, have similar setups.

If games in 2011-12 are lost, “They will not know financially that they’re in a lockout,” Brothers said. “If there is a lockout, you’ll able to pay your bills. And you’re already used to a certain way of living because your paychecks will be consistent.”

Players normally receive bi-weekly paychecks from Nov. 15 to May 1, although some opt for a November to November schedule. But Aminu will receive payments from last season until Nov. 1, 2012. Randolph will be paid through May 1, 2012.

InsideHoops.com editor says: I am happy to announce that I will continue to pay myself during the lockout as well.

Chris Broussard of ESPN reports:

LeBron James

Dwyane Wade, Kevin Durant, Kobe Bryant and Dwight Howard are among the superstars who are reportedly willing to consider playing overseas. One superstar who, at least for now, is not looking into playing elsewhere is LeBron James, according to sources.

Other agents weren’t so high on the idea of playing overseas. Some felt it wasn’t worth it for a superstar player with a large NBA contract to risk injury by playing overseas. Sure, he can get insurance in case of injury, but the premiums on a contract worth $30, $40, $50 million is not cheap.

One agent said he’s trying to get clients who are free agents jobs overseas, but he’s advising those who are signed to NBA clubs to stay in America.

InsideHoops.com editor says: To please some spiteful fans who dislike LeBron out there, I will now suggest you feel free to make up your own joke about Euros and 4th quarters or something, and then laugh heartily about it.

Sportando reports:

Dirk Nowitzki and Chris Kaman announced that they will play with German National Team at Eurobasket 2011 in Lithuania.

Both players will join soon the team coached by Dirk Bauermann.

TalkBasket.net reports:

Both players are expected to be ready to play for the Germany NT in the BEKO-Supercup tournament in Bamberg (together with Turkey, Greece, Belgium), during August 19-21.

Dirk was pleased with his decision and said: “The rest was short but I would like to help the young German NT to gain success in Eurobasket. I will do everything to keep fit and I’m looking forward to spending time with the guys”.

Chris Kaman stated: “Playing for Germany in 2008 was a lot of fun, I think I can help the team and we can achieve things”.

InsideHoops.com editor says: I’ve heard that Nowitzki and Kaman were a package deal for Team Germany. Meaning, they or their representatives were in touch with each other and either both were going to play, or neither one was. I haven’t actually confirmed this, though. But don’t be surprised if you read something about this in the near future.

OKC Thunder

The Oklahoma City Thunder of the National Basketball Association and Chesapeake Energy Corporation (NYSE:CHK) today jointly announced a long-term naming rights partnership for the home of the Thunder. As a result, the downtown Oklahoma City arena will be named “Chesapeake Energy Arena”. Besides being home to the Thunder, the arena regularly hosts a variety of concerts, sporting and other world-class events, attracting more than a million guests per year. Chesapeake is one of the Thunder’s five Founding Partners, which also include Devon Energy Corporation (NYSE:DVN), MidFirst Bank, The Oklahoma Publishing Company and SandRidge Energy, Inc. (NYSE:SD)

Clayton I. Bennett, Thunder Chairman, said, “On behalf of the entire Thunder organization, we are extremely proud to enhance our already strong partnership with Chesapeake Energy. Besides being a leader in the national and international energy industry, Chesapeake is a dynamic business and community leader in Oklahoma. Together with the Thunder’s commitment to the community, it makes the naming rights partnership a natural fit. The Thunder looks forward to many exciting years ahead playing in Chesapeake Energy Arena in downtown Oklahoma City.”

kevin durant

Martha A. Burger, Chesapeake’s Senior Vice President - Human and Corporate Resources, added, “This is an exciting day for Chesapeake and its employees. We are thrilled that the arena will bear the name of our company. The Thunder represents the values we embrace at Chesapeake – integrity, teamwork, commitment, hard work and service.  The Chesapeake Energy Arena and the Thunder are both strong reminders of the incredible progress our city has made in the past decade as well as the energy our citizens have demonstrated to keep building an even better and stronger Oklahoma City in the years ahead.”

Burger continued, “The naming rights also provide a powerful natural gas branding opportunity for our company, particularly when you consider the national, and even global, reach of the Thunder. To see Chesapeake’s distinctive and recognizable blue flame logo as a visually prominent part of downtown Oklahoma City supports our commitment to community and our corporate message that the abundance of natural gas offers our nation the best opportunity to  achieve energy independence.  We are pleased to be actively participating in the continued revitalization and transformation of downtown Oklahoma City currently led by the Devon Energy Center, SandRidge Energy Commons, Continental Resources, the Boathouse District, Myriad Gardens, Project 180, MAPS 3 and the City’s ongoing renovation of Chesapeake Energy Arena.”

InsideHoops.com editor Jeff Lenchiner has said that Thunder fans in OKC have been fantastic in supporting their team, and that the arena is definitely worthy of a big sponsorship.

The 12-year naming rights agreement has an initial annual cost of $3.0 million with a 3.0% annual escalation. The agreement includes Chesapeake branding throughout the building including on the basketball court, prominent premium placement on the high-definition scoreboard and new state-of-the-art interior and exterior digital signage. Most of the signage will be in place by the start of the Thunder’s 2011-12 season.

Opened in June 2002, Chesapeake Energy Arena is managed by SMG and owned by the City of Oklahoma City. The arena was the premier project of Oklahoma City’s first capital improvement program (MAPS) passed in 1993 to finance new and upgraded sports, entertainment, cultural and convention facilities with a 1-cent temporary sales tax. In March 2008, Oklahoma City voters overwhelmingly approved another temporary 1-cent sales tax to fund significant upgrades to the arena.

Kyle Weaver signs in Germany

Sportando reports:

Alba Berlin made official the signing of Kyle Weaver for the coming season. Former Thunder spent most of the season 2010-11 in NBDL with Iowa Energy and Austin Toros. With Energy he recorded averages of 16.6ppg, 5.9rpg and 3.5apg in 25 games while with Toros he scored 13.2ppg and grabbed 5rpg.

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