Archive for June 8th, 2013

maurice cheeks

The Detroit Pistons appear poised to make Maurice Cheeks their next head coach, in the effort to end the revolving door at that spot.

Cheeks and the Pistons have been engaged in negotiations in recent days, as multiple sources expressed optimism this saga, that began with the team firing Lawrence Frank at season’s end and wound up with the Pistons going through the complicated process of interviewing multiple candidates, has reached its end.

The Pistons hope to get a deal done before the end of weekend. Frank being due to receive nearly $4 million next season — the last guaranteed year of his contract — along with a portion of his fourth year could complicate matters as far as Cheeks’ contract length and amount.

Currently an assistant with the Oklahoma City Thunder, Cheeks has helped with the development of guards Russell Westbrook, Reggie Jackson and former Thunder guard Eric Maynor, who was traded to Portland this season. It’s a background the Pistons liked, especially since they’re still figuring out what they have in 2011 first-round pick Brandon Knight and they hope Cheeks could be a good mentor for him…

Cheeks’ consistency probably outweighed his tangible resume, as his career record doesn’t jump out at anyone (284-286 in nine seasons in Portland and Philadelphia), but he’s highly regarded around the league, especially in Oklahoma City.

Reported by Vincent Goodwill of the Detroit News

Jason Collins

NBA veteran Jason Collins has marched in Boston’s gay pride parade with Massachusetts Congressman Joe Kennedy III, his onetime roommate at Stanford University.

Collins wore a T-shirt that read #BeTrue when he joined thousands of marchers Saturday.

In April, Collins became the first active player in one of the four major U.S. professional sports leagues to come out as gay. He wrote in an article for Sports Illustrated that the decision to go public came when Kennedy marched in last year’s parade and Collins didn’t feel that he could join him.

Reported by the Associated Press

lebron james

Coming off a Game 1 loss when he saw his triple-double go to waste and was outdueled in the fourth quarter by Tony Parker, James knew he’d be hit from all sides about his approach for Sunday. The basic underlying tone was, why was he so content in the opener to set up misfiring teammates right until the final gun, rather than “go Cleveland’’ on the Spurs and try to win the game all by himself?

But he wasn’t about to tip his shooting hand.

“We’ll see what type of game plan I come out with,’’ he said. “It will be dumb of me to reveal it today.’’ …

He doesn’t need to reveal anything to anyone, but he does need to figure out how to solve a defense that is entirely different than the one that the Pacers presented in the Eastern Conference finals. Dwyane Wade talked about the need to “crack the code’’ in this next game to avoid a 2-0 series crater, and the one who that really falls on is James.

Reported by Mitch Lawrence of the New York Daily News

According to two sources with knowledge of the 76ers’ search for a coach, Sam Hinkie, president of basketball operations and general manager, probably won’t name a coach until after the June 27 draft.

One Houston-based source said Hinkie “will probably find a coach after the draft.” The source also said that Hinkie believes that the coach “is secondary in the process because [Hinkie] will have an idea of what type of players” the Sixers will need to select.

The Sixers have the 11th pick in the draft.

Reported by John N. Mitchell of the Philadelphia Inquirer

Ricky Ledo says he can help Knicks

Ricky Ledo, one of the top recruits out of high school a year ago, spent all of last season at Providence unable to play because of eligibility issues with the NCAA. So, in order to show off his skills, Ledo has been doing somewhat of a barnstorming tour around the NBA’s practice facilities this spring, as curious teams see what the 6-foot-6 shooting guard can do.

“I just [want to] show them that I belong and that I am more than capable of playing at this level,” Ledo said yesterday after working out for the Knicks at their practice facility. “Especially with me not playing [last season], showing I can compete and hold my own against anyone.” …

Ledo said he thinks if he winds up in New York, he immediately will be able to give the Knicks help as a shooter off the bench — with a chance to develop into more than that.

Reported by Tim Bontemps of the New York Post

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