Archive for September 29th, 2012

Scottie Pippen is not bankrupt — but according to a federal judge, he cannot sue anyone that said he was.

As TMZ first reported, Pippen sued a TON of media outlets for defamation back in 2011 after they published articles claiming he was broke. As proof he’d never gone belly up, Pippen said he has never worth less than $40 million at any point in the last 10 years.

Pippen wanted $1 million from every media outlet that said his finances were in the toilet.

– Reported by TMZ.com

Kevin Garnett no longer speaking to Ray Allen

Ray Allen still considers Kevin Garnett a friend even if their communication has apparently been cut off.

On Friday, Garnett said he is no longer speaking to longtime Boston Celtics teammate Allen after he signed with the rival Miami Heat over the summer.

Speaking Saturday after his first official practice with the Heat, Allen said he was disappointed at Garnett’s sentiment.

“That’s a shame,” Allen said. “I’m a good person to talk to on the phone. … I’ve been in weird trade situations the last few years. You always felt you had one foot in and one foot out so I can’t worry about it.”

– Reported by Brian Windhorst of ESPN.com

LeBron says Heat can get a lot better

LeBron says Heat can get a lot better

With 12 players back from last season’s championship roster — foremost among them himself, after a season where he won the NBA’s MVP award, the NBA Finals MVP, his first league title and then an Olympic gold medal over the summer for good measure — the Heat clearly has tons of talent. Adding Ray Allen and Rashard Lewis to the mix figures to make Miami that much better.

Naturally, James isn’t complaining.

“It’s scary to see, to look in our locker room today and say that we can be better than we were this past season,” James said. “Are we better right now than we were just a couple months ago? Of course not.

“But we have the potential to be better. We have the potential to be a lot better. That is scary.”

– Reported by the Detroit Free Press

Mavs center Chris Kaman has lower back sprain

The Mavericks just finished up their first preseason practice and the only bad news came when center Chris Kaman had to leave the workout, coach Rick Carlisle said.

“It was a really good practice,” Carlilse said. “We had one casualty. Kaman went out with a sprained lower back. Not considered serious. So we’ll see how he’s doing tonight and tomorrow and go from there.”

Kaman’s injury would not be considered anything more than a blip were it not for his recent history with physical problems. He missed 19 of 66 games last season and 50 of 82 in 2010-11 with various ailments, mostly knee troubles.

– Reported by Eddie Sefko of the Dallas Morning News

The Memphis Grizzlies signed free agents Michael Dunigan, Ronald Dupree, Jarrid Famous, Jerome Jordan and D.J. Kennedy, Grizzlies General Manager and Vice President of Basketball Operations Chris Wallace announced today.

Dunigan (6-10, 245) comes to Memphis after professional stints in Israel, Estonia, Italy and, most recently, Ukraine, where he recorded 12.4 points, 8.9 rebounds and 1.7 blocks on .507 shooting in 25 games last season in the 2012 Ukrainian SuperLeague.  In the previous season, the 23-year-old Oregon product posted 11.1 points, 8.0 rebounds and 1.4 blocks in 25 games in guiding BC Kalev/Cramo Tallinn to the 2011 Estonian League Championship.

Dupree (6-7, 209) joins the Grizzlies after competing in both Argentina and Italy last season.  A six-year NBA veteran (2005-11), Dupree holds career averages of 3.5 points and 2.2 rebounds on .427 shooting in 11.2 minutes in 157 games (eight starts) with Chicago, Detroit, Minnesota, Seattle and Toronto.  The 31-year-old LSU product also owns NBA Development League career averages of 16.7 points, 6.0 rebounds and 3.1 assists on .495 shooting in 106 games (96 starts) over four seasons with Huntsville, Tulsa and Utah.

Famous (6-11, 240) spent last season in Slovakia, the D-League and the Philippines after completing his four-year collegiate career at the University of South Florida.  The 24-year-old posted 13.9 points and 9.8 rebounds on .494 shooting in 29.4 minutes in 16 D-League contests, splitting time with Iowa and Fort Wayne.

Jordan (7-0, 253) recorded 2.0 points and 1.3 rebounds on .515 shooting in 5.1 minutes in 21 games last season during his rookie campaign with the New York Knicks.  The 25-year-old also posted 18.0 points, 8.6 rebounds and 2.80 blocks on .485 shooting in 32.6 minutes in five games while on assignment with the D-League’s Erie Bayhawks.  The Kingston, Jamaica native enjoyed a four-year collegiate career at the University of Tulsa, where he set the school record for blocks (333), and played overseas in Serbia and Slovenia after he was drafted by the Milwaukee Bucks in the second round (44th overall) of the 2010 NBA Draft.

Kennedy (6-6, 215) rejoins the Grizzlies after originally being acquired from the Cleveland Cavaliers on July 25.  Memphis waived the 22-year-old on Sept. 18.  Last season, the St. John’s product averaged 6.0 points and 3.5 rebounds on .417 shooting in 29.5 minutes in two appearances as a rookie for the Cavaliers but spent most of his time with the D-League’s Erie Bayhawks, where he posted 15.7 points, 7.3 rebounds and 4.4 assists on .447 shooting in 37.3 minutes in 44 games (all starts).

Memphis’ roster now stands at 18.

Blake Griffin will hit the floor when the Clippers open training camp today.

Well, the Clippers hope their energetic power forward doesn’t actually fall to the court. They have seen enough of a down-and-injured Griffin, whose latest injury was a torn meniscus in his left knee that required surgery and sidelined him for the Olympics.

chris paul

Meanwhile, point guard Chris Paul wasn’t cleared for full contact activities after he had surgery to mend a torn ligament in his right thumb Aug. 21. The Clippers said they expect him to participate in limited fashion today, and for the next two weeks.

In addition, shooting guard Chauncey Billups was cleared for limited team drills after he had season-ending surgery on his torn left Achilles tendon Feb. 15. Coach Vinny Del Negro said there was no timetable for Billups’ season debut.

– Reported by Elliot Teaford of the Los Angeles Daily News

The Minnesota Timberwolves today finalized the team’s 2012-13 training camp roster by signing unrestricted free agents Will Conroy, Mike Harris, Chris Johnson, Phil Jones, Seth Tarver and Jermaine Taylor. Today’s signings complete the Wolves training camp roster, which stands at 20 players. Minnesota’s training camp is scheduled for Tuesday, Oct. 2 - Friday, Oct. 5.

Taylor, a 6-4 guard, has played parts of two seasons for the Houston Rockets and Sacramento Kings. He spent the 2009-10 season in Houston, averaging 4.1 points in 31 contests, including four starts. He started the 2010-11 season with the Rockets before finishing it with the Kings. In 26 games, eight starts, with Sacramento, Taylor averaged 7.1 points in 15.6 minutes. Taylor was originally drafted by the Washington Wizards with the 32nd pick in the 2009 NBA Draft after completing his collegiate career at Central Florida.

Conroy, a 6-2 guard, has played parts of two seasons in the NBA, most recently appearing in five games for the Houston Rockets in 2009-10 where he averaged 1.2 points and 1.4 assists. Conroy played for the Memphis Grizzlies (three games) and Los Angeles Clippers (four games) during the 2006-07 season. Conroy went undrafted in 2005 after a four-year career at the University of Washington where he became the school’s all-time assist leader with 515 assists.

Harris, a 6-6 forward, has spent parts of three seasons (2007-08; 2009-10; 2010-11) with two different NBA teams, playing for the Washington Wizards and Houston Rockets. Harris most recently averaged 2.0 points and 1.3 rebounds in four games with Houston during the 2010-11 season. In 34 career NBA games, he has averages of 2.9 points and 2.4 rebounds. Harris was on the Wolves’ 2012 Summer League entry, averaging 9.6 points and 6.6 rebounds. Harris finished his collegiate career as the fourth player in WAC history to record 2,000 points and 1,000 rebounds, leaving as Rice University’s all-time leading scorer (2,014 points, ninth all-time in the WAC) and rebounder (1,111 rebounds, fourth).

Johnson, a 6-11 center, has played parts of two NBA seasons with Boston, Portland and New Orleans. Johnson started the 2011-12 season with Portland, averaging 1.6 points and 0.9 rebounds in 20 contests. He finished the season in New Orleans where he averaged 3.3 points and 3.1 rebounds in seven contests. In 41 career games, he holds averages of 2.1 points and 1.5 rebounds. Johnson was named the 2011 NBA D-League Defensive Player of the Year, earning a spot in the All-Star Game. He averaged 16.2 points, 9.2 rebounds and 2.8 blocks during the 2010-11 season for the Dakota Wizards. Johnson spent his collegiate years at Louisiana State University. He went undrafted in the 2009 NBA Draft.

Jones, a 6-10 forward/center, has played overseas for the past two years after playing collegiately at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. He has made stops in Uruguay, Brussels and spent the past season in Romania. A U.S. Virgin Islands National Team member, Jones played at the 2009 FIBA Americas Championship, averaging 8.5 points and 4.8 rebounds in four games.

Tarver, a 6-5 guard, has spent the last two seasons with the Idaho Stampede of the NBA D-League. Tarver averaged 11.3 points and 4.7 rebounds in 45 contests last season. Tarver went undrafted in 2010 after a four-year collegiate career at Oregon State.

Mavericks re-up services of team doctor

The Dallas Mavericks announced today that they have extended the contract of long time Dallas Mavericks team physician, Dr. T.O. Souryal.

Souryal, in his 20th season with the Mavericks, signed a five-year extension with the team. He also serves as the medical director at Texas Sports Medicine and Orthopaedic Group and was recently named by US News and World Report as one of the top 1% of all orthopaedic surgeons in the country.

“I am grateful to Mark Cuban and the entire Mavericks organization for giving me this opportunity to work with such an elite organization,” Souryal said. “The cutting edge technology that we use with the Mavericks players is a benefit to all my patients.”

The Orlando Magic will hold their 2012 training camp at the Amway Center in Orlando, beginning Tuesday, October 2.

In addition, the Magic have signed free agents Armon Johnson (#1, 6-3, 195, 2/23/89, Nevada) and DeQuan Jones (#20, 6-8, 221, 6/20/90, Miami-FL). The roster currently stands at 19 players.

The Magic will also hold an open practice at Amway Center, which will be free to the public, on Monday, October 29.  Doors will open to the general public at 6:30 p.m., with the practice beginning at 7 p.m.

Rasheed Wallace will join the Knicks

Rasheed Wallace will join the Knicks

Rasheed Wallace will officially become a Knick on Monday.

Wallace has told the Knicks he has elected to come out of retirement and join their training camp, according to an NBA source.

The 6-foot-11 Wallace, who worked out with the Knicks over the weekend, retired two years ago after a disappointing season with the Celtics. The Knicks are expected to announce the signing Monday at Media Day. The first practices begin Tuesday.

The tempestuous Wallace, 38, will become the fifth Knick over the age of 35, joining Jason Kidd, Marcus Camby, Kurt Thomas and Pablo Prigioni.

– Reported by Marc Berman of the New York Post

John Wall out 8 weeks due to stress injury to left patella

Wizards President Ernie Grunfeld announced today that guard John Wall will miss approximately eight weeks after being diagnosed with the early stages of a stress injury to his left patella.  No surgery will be necessary, and his rehab will begin immediately.

“My teammates and I are all excited to build on the improvement we made at the end of last season, and I know they will continue to make great progress while I get through this setback,” said Wall. “I will work extremely hard to make sure I get back as soon as possible so I can re-join them and help our team continue to improve.”

Wall was examined yesterday in New York by orthopedic specialist Dr. David Altchek after experiencing discomfort in his left knee and underwent an MRI that revealed the early stages of a non-traumatic stress injury.

“We’re all disappointed for John after how hard he worked this summer and how excited he was to begin training camp, but we feel fortunate that we caught the injury early and that he will be able to return with the vast majority of the season still in front of us,” said Grunfeld.  ”In the meantime, we’re confident that the versatility and depth of our team will help us move forward and continue the positive momentum that we’ve seen over the past several months.”

The Wizards begin training camp on Oct. 2 at George Mason University and open the season on Oct. 30 at Cleveland.

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