Archive for December 20th, 2011

Trail Blazers waive center Earl Barron

Earl Barron

The Portland Trail Blazers have waived center Earl Barron, it was announced today by Acting General Manager Chad Buchanan.

Barron appeared in two games with Portland in 2010-11, averaging 3.5 points, 7.0 rebounds and 1.5 assists in 18.5 minutes. He signed with the Trail Blazers on April 12, 2011.

Rockets may want a Chuck Hayes reunion

Chuck Hayes

The Rockets on Monday made inquiries about the prognosis of former Rockets forward Chuck Hayes to determine if his medical condition might allow him to be a free-agent option again, a person with knowledge of the talks said.

The Kings voided Hayes’ $21.3 million, four-year contract on Monday, days after Hayes failed a team physical. The team had announced last week that an abnormality was found during a heart examination. No additional information was made available at Hayes’ request.

Hayes broke into the league in 2005-06, the season after his predecessor at power forward for the Rockets, Juwan Howard, was sidelined because of a heart condition.

– Reported by Jonathan Feigen of the Houston Chronicle

Arron Afflalo

The Denver Nuggets have re-signed guard Arron Afflalo to a multiyear contract, Executive Vice President of Basketball Operations Masai Ujiri announced today. Per team policy, financial terms were not disclosed. We’ll post contract details here later today.

Afflalo, 6-5, 215, set career-highs in several statistical categories in 2010-11, including points (12.6), rebounds (3.6) and assists (2.4). The 26-year-old also finished fifth among NBA guards with a .498 shooting percentage, and he shot .423 from three-point range, which tied for eighth among the overall league leaders.

“Arron is a tremendous young player who is only going to get better,” Ujiri said. “Not only has he become one of our best offensive players, but he is an excellent defender and a great leader in the locker room. He is a big part of our future, and we are glad to have him back on our roster.”

Drafted by the Detroit Pistons 27th overall out of UCLA in 2007, Afflalo played limited minutes in his first two NBA seasons before the Nuggets acquired him in exchange for a future second-round pick on July 13, 2009.

After earning a spot in Denver’s starting lineup less than two weeks into the 2009-10 season, Afflalo never relinquished the job. He averaged 8.8 points and 3.1 assists in his first year with the Nuggets and finished eighth in the NBA in three-point percentage (.434).

Afflalo enjoyed another banner season in 2010-11, highlighted by a career-high 31 points against the Phoenix Suns on Jan. 11 and a 24-point game against the Dallas Mavericks on Feb. 10. In the Dallas game, he scored 19 points in the fourth-quarter and hit the winning jumper as time expired.

The apparent lack of a prenuptial agreement — coupled with 10 years of marriage — will likely significantly increase the size of Vanessa Bryant’s divorce settlement with Kobe Bryant, legal experts said.

Vanessa Bryant’s mother told The Times several years ago that the couple did not sign a prenuptial agreement when they tied the knot in 2001. If true, that would entitle Vanessa to half of their community property…

Some estimates put Kobe Bryant’s net worth at $150 million. Legal experts said Vanessa Bryant will probably receive at least $75 million in addition to ongoing spousal and child support.

– Reported by the Los Angeles Times “L.A. Now” Blog

Darrell Arthur

Memphis Grizzlies forward Darrell Arthur underwent a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), which revealed a torn right Achilles tendon, the team announced today.

Arthur (6-9, 235), who suffered the injury on Dec. 18, is scheduled to have surgery to repair the injury within one week and expected to be ready for the start of the 2012-13 season.

The 23-year-old averaged career highs in points (9.1), field goal percentage (.497), blocks (0.79) and minutes (20.1) in 80 games last season in his third NBA campaign.  He posted 7.1 points and 2.2 rebounds in 15.5 minutes during Memphis’ 13-game run in the 2011 Playoffs.

Selected by the New Orleans Hornets in the first round (27th overall) of the 2008 NBA Draft, the Dallas native owns career averages of 6.9 points, 4.2 rebounds and 0.69 blocks on .468 shooting in 18.8 minutes in 188 games (73 starts), all with the Grizzlies.

Rip Hamilton

Not only will Richard Hamilton makes his Bulls debut Tuesday, he’ll be a starter.

Bulls head coach Tom Thibodeau ended the speculation after the team’s Tuesday-morning shootaround.

“He’s going to play,” said Thibodeau. “We’re going to change up [the starting lineup. Rip’s going to start tonight; Ronnie [Brewer is] going to be with the second unit.”

“We’ll see when [Hamilton] gets out there, what he can handle, he added. “I just want to see improvement from our last game…I’d like to see us take better care of the ball, I’d like to see us finish our defense better, so those are two of the primary things.”

– Reported by Aggrey Sam of CSN Chicago

Atlanta Hawks sign guard Jannero Pargo

Jannero Pargo

The Atlanta Hawks today signed guard Jannero Pargo, according to Executive Vice President/General Manager Rick Sund.  Per team policy, terms were not disclosed.

Pargo signed with the Bulls on March 20, 2011, but didn’t appear in a contest last season. In 2009-10 with Chicago, the seven-year veteran played in 63 games (starting five), averaging 5.5 ppg, 1.4 apg and 1.2 rpg in 13.2 mpg. He’s also spent time with the Lakers, Raptors and Hornets. In 379 career contests, he’s put in 6.6 ppg, 2.0 apg and 1.5 rpg in 15.7 mpg.

The Hawks’ updated 2011-12 training camp roster is attached.

Atlanta hosts Charlotte on Thursday at Philips Arena in the Hawks’ only home preseason contest (7:30 p.m.). Tickets are free to all kids under the age of 16 at the Philips Arena box office (up to four free tickets per paid adult).

The Hawks’ first regular season home game is Wednesday, December 28 against John Wall and the Washington Wizards (7:30 p.m.).

Paul Allen was emphatic: He’s not selling the Portland Trail Blazers.

In a rare and wide-ranging discussion with reporters on Monday night, the billionaire owner shot down recent talk that he wants to put the Blazers on the market in the near future.

“I have no plans to sell the team,” he declared.

Allen would not, however, say how long he expects to keep the Blazers. He says numerous factors would play into that decision, including his health. The co-founder of Microsoft was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma and underwent chemotherapy in 2009, but was declared cancer-free late last year.

Allen was optimistic that the NBA’s new labor agreement would help smaller-market teams like his that have been losing money. He corrected one reporter about his losses saying they were in the “hundreds of millions, let’s be clear.”

– Reported by Anne M. Peterson of the Associated Press

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