Archive for September 14th, 2012

The Los Angeles Lakers have signed rookie guard Darius Johnson-Odom, it was announced today.

Johnson-Odom, the 55th overall pick in the 2012 NBA Draft, was acquired by the Lakers from Dallas on draft night. The 6-2 guard out of Marquette averaged 15.7 points, 3.1 rebounds and 2.5 assists in 105 career games. As a senior, the Raleigh, North Carolina native led his team in scoring (18.3ppg) and earned First Team All-Big East honors in addition to being named an Honorable Mention All-American by the Associated Press.

Most recently, Johnson-Odom  played on the Lakers 2012 Summer League team in Las Vegas, averaging 3.8 points, 3.4 rebounds and 1.4 assists in 15.8 minutes.

The Utah Jazz announced today that the team has signed second-round draft pick Kevin Murphy.

The 6-7, 185-pound guard out of Tennessee Tech was selected 47th overall by the Jazz in the 2012 NBA Draft.  In five games (two starts) for the Jazz entry in the 2012 Orlando Pro Summer League, Murphy averaged 8.6 points and 2.4 rebounds in 23 minutes of action.

A native of Atlanta, Ga., Murphy amassed 2,019 points, 535 rebounds and 248 assists in four years at Tennessee Tech.  During his senior season in 2011-12, he averaged 20.6 points, 5.2 rebounds and 2.3 assists in 34.5 minutes.

Murphy, who ranks second all-time at Tennessee Tech in scoring, was twice named to the All-Ohio Valley Conference (OVC) First Team (2011, 2012) as well as the OVC All-Tournament Team (2011, 2012).  Following his freshman season, he was named to the 2009 OVC All-New Comer Team.

Mikhail Prokhorov is a big fan of the deadpan delivery, so it’s easy to imagine a straight-faced towering man explaining to DETAILS Magazine why he won’t be rapping with Jay Z at the opening of the Barclays Center.

“I respect rap greatly but don’t consider myself a fan,” said the billionaire owner of the Nets, who previously rapped on Russian television while calling himself “a real Russian Eminem.”

“It was a complete surprise when I was asked to rap. But when I set myself to something, I always achieve great heights. So I don’t think it would be fair to rap with Jay. I could cause irreparable damage to his professional career.”

So Prokhorov won’t be kicking any rhymes at Jay Z’s concert on Sept. 28, but he is attending next week’s ribbon cutting ceremony at the Barclays Center.

– Reported by Stefan Bondy of the New York Daily News

Chris Bosh OK with playing center

Chris Bosh OK with playing center

Chris Bosh said he’s open to returning as the center of attention.

One of the Miami Heat’s big three with LeBron James and Dwayne Wade, Bosh told ESPN.com that he expects to open the 2012-13 as the team’s starting center.

“It’s becoming natural to me,” Bosh told ESPN.com. “I have a very unique opportunity to do something very special for myself and my team. I think all the time that you have to evolve and get better. This is me evolving as a player.”

– Reported by the Sports Xchange

Clippers sign Matt Barnes

Clippers sign Matt Barnes

The Los Angeles Clippers today signed free agent forward Matt Barnes.

With Carol Butler as the likely starter at small forward, Barnes should be able to provide nice bench depth.

The Clippers also have Lamar Odom, who can fill in at either forward spot but is more of a big-man than a small forward.

The nine-year NBA veteran has averaged 7.3 points, 4.5 rebounds and 21.3 minutes over his career. In 63 games played for the Lakers last season, Barnes tallied 7.8 points and 5.5 rebounds per game.

This marks Barnes’ second stint with the Clippers. After signing with Los Angeles as a free agent rookie in 2003-04, he averaged 4.5 points, 4.0 rebounds and 19.1 minutes in 38 games played that season.

Barnes turned in his most productive NBA campaign with the Phoenix Suns during the 2008-09 season. In 77 games played (40 starts) with the Suns, Barnes averaged a career-high 10.2 points, 5.5 rebounds, 2.8 assists and 27.0 minutes per game.

Aside from the Clippers, Lakers and Suns, Barnes has also played for the Sacramento Kings, New York Knicks, Philadelphia 76ers, Golden State Warriors and Orlando Magic over his career.

Barnes was originally drafted in the second round (46th overall selection) of the 2002 NBA Draft by the Memphis Grizzlies but was traded to Cleveland prior to the start of his rookie season. After being waived by the Cavaliers during training camp, Barnes played 50 games for Fayetteville of the NBA D-League averaging 9.7 points and 3.3 rebounds during the 2002 season.

During his four-year collegiate career at UCLA (1998-2002), Barnes tallied 8.8 points, 4.8 rebounds and 2.0 assists in 22.6 minutes per game. Barnes helped lead the Bruins to NCAA Tournament appearances in all four of his seasons at UCLA, including three straight appearances in the Sweet Sixteen.

Carmelo Anthony is in Puerto Rico to unveil remodeled basketball courts at a public housing complex and play a bit of softball with celebrity friends.

It is the third time the New York Knicks star has visited the U.S. territory in as many years to rebuild basketball courts through his charitable foundation.

“There’s plenty of kids down there who need role models,” he said during a press conference Thursday. “I grew up in a situation like that. … It was survival of the fittest.”

The two newly remodeled courts, located in the northern city of Bayamon, are used by the island’s top minor league players and have produced players now part of the island’s Superior League, said Sports and Recreation Secretary Henry Neumann.

“It is an emblematic court,” he said.

– Reported by the Associated Press

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