Archive for February 17th, 2012

J.R. Smith
JR Smith
Hopefully won’t anger Jeremy Lin

The New York Knicks have officially added a talented shooting guard with deep range, great athletic ability, and questionable decision-making skills.

Senior Vice President, Basketball Operations and Interim General Manager Glen Grunwald announced today that the team has signed free agent guard J.R. Smith.

Smith, 6-6, 220-pounds, returns to the NBA after playing overseas for Zhejiang of the Chinese Basketball Association.

He holds NBA career averages of 12.5 points, on .428 shooting from the field and .371 from three-point range, and 23.9 minutes in 503 games (129 starts) over seven NBA seasons with New Orleans/Oklahoma City and Denver. He averaged 12.3 points on .435 shooting and .390 from downtown (124-318), 4.1 rebounds and 2.2 assists over 24.9 minutes in 79 games (six starts) with Denver last season.

The Freehold, NJ-native was originally selected out of high school by the New Orleans Hornets in the first round (18th overall) of 2004 NBA Draft.

To generate roster space, the Knicks waived Renaldo Balkman. The 6-8, 225-pounds averaged 3.0 points and 8.2 minutes over 14 games off the bench for New York this season.

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Delonte West undergoes finger surgery

Mavericks guard Delonte West underwent surgery today at Texas Sports Medicine to stabilize the fracture to his right ring finger. He will have a subsequent procedure to remove the stabilizing pins prior to his return to basketball activity. There is no timetable for his return.

West (6-3, 180) has averaged 8.3 points, 2.5 rebounds, 3.4 assists, 1.6 steals and 22.7 minutes per game in 29 games (20 starts) for Dallas this season.

Tony Parker opening a nightclub

Tony Parker
Tony Parker
Runs thangs

Tony Parker is taking a shot at a new venture with the launch of a nightclub called Nueve Lounge. Nueve is Spanish for nine, Parker’s jersey number.

The lounge is currently under construction and set to open March 9. It will occupy the former Chango’s Havana Club near Interstate 10 West and Boerne Stage Road.

The idea of opening a nightclub in San Antonio is something Parker, the all-star point guard for the San Antonio Spurs, had been discussing with his brothers, Pierre and TJ, for some time.

“My brothers were playing basketball in Europe, and they decided to retire in San Antonio. We had been talking about doing something together, and my brothers like the bar scene. We wanted to do a nice lounge with a New York or Las Vegas kind of style, you know, classy.”

– Reported by Valentino Lucio of the San Antonio Express-News Blog

City Council Speaker Christine Quinn confirmed in a triumphant press statement reports that Time Warner Cable and MSG Network had ended their nearly two-month long standoff as political and populist pressure intensified over the past few days thanks in large part to Linsanity.

“I want to thank the MSG-Network and Time Warner Cable for coming to a deal that will put the Knicks and the Rangers back on TV. Now, a million more New Yorkers will be able to go Linsane in the privacy of their own living room. I’m looking forward to watching the return of Carmelo Anthony for the Knicks and Henrik Lundqvist in goal for the Rangers.”

A Time Warner spokesman declined to comment on the reported deal and spokesmen for the MSG Network did not immediately return requests for comment.

– Reported by Nina Mandell of the New York Daily News

steve nash

The Phoenix Suns are a shadow of the frenetic scoring machine they were a few years ago. Maybe that makes the season Steve Nash is having all the more impressive.

Not surrounded by an abundance of talent, on a team that stood 12-18 going into Friday night’s game against the Lakers in Los Angeles, Nash leads the league in assists at 10.7 and is the top shooter among guards at 56 percent. That’s third overall among players at any position and would be his career best if it holds up for the season.

On his 38th birthday, Feb. 7, Nash had 18 points and 11 assist, including the game-winning layup with 5 seconds to go in a 107-105 win at Milwaukee. For the eighth time in his 16-year NBA career, he made the All-Star Game roster.

There has been one concession to his age. Coach Alvin Gentry held him out of Tuesday’s loss at Denver so he wouldn’t have to play three consecutive nights. The next night he had 22 points and 16 assists but his team faded down the stretch in a home loss to Atlanta.

“People are saying `Hey, you’re playing great for 38,”’ said Lon Babby, the Suns’ president for basketball operations. “My answer to that is `No, he’s just playing great—period.”

– Reported by Bob Baum of the Associated Press

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