Archive for June 27th, 2013

kevin garnett

The Brooklyn Nets will acquire Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett from the Boston Celtics in a deal that was still developing as the NBA draft ended, according to a person with knowledge of the details.

The trade can’t be completed until July 10, after next season’s salary cap is set, so pieces were still being discussed early Friday. But the person says the Nets will get the two perennial All-Stars, signaling the breakup of the Celtics’ veteran core…

Yahoo Sports, which first reported the talks, said the Nets would also get veteran Jason Terry from Boston and send Gerald Wallace, Kris Joseph, the expiring deal of Kris Humphries and three future first-round picks to Boston.

On the day they hosted the NBA draft, the Nets were making much bigger noise with the transaction that will send Pierce and Garnett to a new Atlantic Division home.

The Celtics already let Doc Rivers leave after acquiring a draft pick from the Los Angeles Clippers. Ray Allen departed last summer for Miami, and now the other two members of the Big Three that led the Celtics to an NBA title and within a victory of a second will soon be gone as well.

Reported by Brian Mahoney of the Associated Press

Suns pick Alex Len at No. 5 in NBA Draft

The Phoenix Suns chose Ukrainian center Alex Len with the fifth overall pick in the NBA draft, passing on Nerlens Noel and Ben McLemore.

The 7-foot-1 Len, who just turned 20, played two seasons at Maryland. Last year he averaged 11.9 points and 7.8 rebounds per game. Len came to Phoenix but did not work out because he is recovering from a stress fracture in his foot.

Because of a couple of surprise picks ahead of them, the Suns found that Noel, the big center from Kentucky, and McLemore, the sharpshooting guard from Kansas, were still available.

Reported by Bob Baum of the Associated Press

The Charlotte Bobcats have selected Indiana center Cody Zeller with the No. 4 pick in the NBA draft.

Bobcats general manager Rich Cho said earlier in the week the Bobcats needed a big man and the 7-foot, 240-pound Zeller should provide help on the boards.

Zeller averaged 16.5 points and 8.1 rebounds last season as a sophomore for the Hoosiers. He finished as Indiana’s career record holder in field goal percentage, shooting 59.1 percent from the floor.

Two Hoosiers were picked in the top four in the draft. Victor Oladipo was selected second overall by Orlando.

Reported by Steve Reed of the Associated Press

The Washington Wizards have selected Georgetown sophomore Otto Porter, Jr. with the third pick in the NBA draft.

The 6-foot-8 Porter provides the Wizards a small forward to go with a backcourt of former first-round picks John Wall and Bradley Beal.

Porter - the Big East Player of the Year - is very familiar with the Wizards’ home floor because he played on it the past two seasons with the Hoyas.

The pick came after Cleveland took UNLV forward Anthony Bennett with the first overall pick and Orlando selected center Victor Oladipo of Indiana.

Reported by the Associated Press

The Orlando Magic have selected Indiana guard Victor Oladipo with the second pick in the NBA draft.

The 6-foot-4 Oladipo was a first-team AP All-American after averaging 13.6 points, 6.3 rebounds and 2.1 assists as a junior, leading the Hoosiers to their first outright Big Ten regular-season championship in 20 years. He set Indiana’s record for steals in a season (78) and led the Big Ten with a .599 field goal percentage.

The Magic are coming off an NBA-worst 20-62 season after six straight playoff seasons and a trip to the NBA Finals in 2009.

Reported by the Associated Press

The Cleveland Cavaliers selected UNLV freshman Anthony Bennett with the No. 1 pick Thursday night, making him the first Canadian to be the top choice and getting the NBA draft off to a surprising start.

The Cavaliers passed on big men Nerlens Noel and Alex Len, who went to Phoenix at No. 5, in favor of the forward who has starred for Canada’s junior national teams and was the Mountain West Conference player of the year.

There was suspense right until the end, either because the Cavs were unsure who they wanted or were trying to trade the pick. Most predictions had them taking one of the big men.

David Stern, booed heavily in his final draft as commissioner, added to the surprise of the moment by pausing slightly before announcing the Cavs’ pick, their first at No. 1 since taking All-Star Kyrie Irving in 2011.

Orlando passed on both of the big men, too, going with Indiana swingman Victor Oladipo with the No. 2 pick. Washington took Otto Porter Jr. with the third pick, keeping the Georgetown star local.

Reported by Brian Mahoney of the Associated Press

Carmelo Anthony

Carmelo Anthony said Thursday that his shoulder is doing great and he doesn’t believe that he’ll need surgery.

Anthony injured his shoulder late in the Celtics’ series and played through the pain in the Knicks’ six-game loss to the Pacers in the next round after which it was revealed he had a small tear in his left shoulder. A source said at the time that Anthony would rehab it for a month and would not need surgery.

“Much better. It feels much better. I have had about four to five weeks to let it rest and heal up,” Anthony said after a ceremony in which he refurbished two basketball courts at the Red Hook apartments in Brooklyn.

“It’s not 100 percent yet but it’s much better.”

Reported by Marc Berman of the New York Post (Blog)

Nikola Pekovic

The Minnesota Timberwolves today announced the team has extended a qualifying offer to Nikola Pekovic, making him a restricted free agent.

Pekovic, 27, concluded the 2012-13 season, his third in the NBA, with career highs in scoring (16.3 ppg), rebounding (8.8 rpg) and minutes (31.6 mpg). In 62 games, all starts, the 6-11 center finished 20th in the NBA in field goal accuracy at 52.0%, while shooting 74.4% from the free throw line. Pekovic collected a team-high 26 points/rebound double-doubles last season, including 11 games with 20+ points and 10+ rebounds. He became the first Wolves player in over four years to be named Western Conference Player of the Week when he averaged 25.0 points, on 58.9% shooting, and 8.5 rebounds in four contests from April 1 - 7.

In 174 NBA games, 108 starts, Pekovic owns career averages of 11.6 points and 6.2 rebounds in 23.6 minutes per contest. The Wolves originally selected the Montenegro native with the 31st overall pick in the 2008 NBA Draft.

David Joerger

The Memphis Grizzlies announced today that the team has hired David Joerger (YAY-ger) as the team’s next head coach.

“We are thrilled to announce we have hired Dave Joerger as the next head coach of the Memphis Grizzlies,” said CEO & Managing Partner Jason Levien. “Not only do we think Dave will continue to grow the team’s league-best defensive identity, but we believe we have one of the league’s budding coaching talents to lead our team. We are happy the Joerger family will continue to call Memphis home for years to come.”

One of the most successful minor league basketball coaches in history, Joerger recently completed his sixth season as an assistant on the Grizzlies’ bench and his second as lead assistant.

With Joerger on the sidelines, the Grizzlies have steadily become one of the league’s most tenacious defenses, leading the NBA in points allowed (89.3) and ranking second in overall defensive rating.   Memphis has improved its defensive rating every season with Joerger on the bench.

The Grizzlies have generated 2,105 steals over the past three seasons, 180 more than any other NBA team in that time span, and paced the league in both steals per game and forced turnovers during the 2010-11 and 2011-12 seasons.  Memphis also was represented on the 2012-13 NBA All-Defensive Teams by three starters, including Tony Allen (First Team), 2012-13 NBA Defensive Player of the Year Marc Gasol (Second Team) and Mike Conley (Second Team).  Allen has made the All-Defensive Team in each of the past three seasons, including two consecutive First Team selections.

Before earning his first NBA assistant coaching job with the Grizzlies, Joerger gained fame as head coach of the 2007 NBA D-League Champion Dakota Wizards.  Dakota’s 2007 championship was Joerger’s fifth as a head coach.  With one International Basketball Association (IBA) title and three in the Continental Basketball Association (CBA), Joerger also owns two CBA Coach of the Year Awards and a head coaching record of 232-117 (.665).

After finishing his playing career at Moorhead State, Joerger got his start as the Dakota Wizards’ general manager when the franchise was a member of the IBA. He received his first opportunity on the sidelines as an assistant coach during the 1997-98 season.  After three years as an assistant, Joerger replaced head coach Duane Ticknor and led the Wizards to their first championship during the 2000-01 season. Prior to the 2001-02 season, the Wizards moved into the CBA where Joerger led the team to another title. Continuing his success, Joerger captured his third title in four years after the Wizards defeated the Idaho Stampede to win the 2004 CBA Championship.

During the summer of 2004, Joerger moved to Sioux Falls to become the head coach of the Skyforce and proceeded to win his fourth CBA Championship, giving him more minor league championships than other notable minor-league-turned-NBA head coaches Phil Jackson, George Karl, Flip Saunders and Eric Musselman combined.

Robert Sacre

The Los Angeles Lakers have extended a qualifying offer to forward/center Robert Sacre, making him a restricted free agent, it was announced today by Lakers General Manager Mitch Kupchak.

Sacre appeared in 32 games with the Lakers last season, averaging 1.3 points and 1.1 rebounds in 6.3 minutes. The 7-0 forward/center also appeared in seven games for the Los Angeles D-Fenders where he averaged 11.4 points, 8.4 rebounds and 1.4 blocks in 32.6 minutes.

Selected by the Lakers in the second round (60th overall pick) of the 2012 NBA draft, Sacre finished his career at Gonzaga ranked second all-time in school history in career blocks (186), while averaging 9.4 points, 5.0 rebounds and 1.4 blocks in 135 games.

The key question for the Nuggets in the NBA draft Thursday: Is a guaranteed three-year contract for $2.8 million — $899,000 in the first season — worth it?

That’s what the 27th pick in the draft will cost the Nuggets, should they select a player in that slot. And would that player even play?

The short answer to those questions is no, and the Nuggets are expected to try to trade out of the first round. But there are complications in doing so. They aren’t the only team drafting late in the first round looking to make a move out of it. If those teams can’t find a suitor, the Nuggets would have to make that selection.

In need of a shooter, the Nuggets could get one in the draft. Among the possibilities: California’s Allen Crabbe, Providence’s Ricky Ledo and Glen Rice Jr., who played in the D-League last season after problems at Georgia Tech got him dismissed from the team.

Reported by Christopher Dempsey of the Denver Post

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