Archive for March 26th, 2014

The following is from the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York:

Barclays Center announced today a two-year agreement with the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) and an extension with the Atlantic 10 Conference (A-10) that secures postseason conference tournaments in Brooklyn’s major sports and entertainment venue through 2021.

The ACC Tournament will be played at Barclays Center in 2017 and ’18. The A-10 will continue to hold its championship at Barclays Center in 2015 and 2016 and then return to the venue for three years in 2019, 2020 and 2021. The ACC and the A-10 will play inter-conference doubleheaders at Barclays Center in 2015, 2016 and 2017. In addition, the A-10 has secured a spot for its teams to participate in the annual BROOKLYN HOOPS™ events at Barclays Center.

“It’s exciting to bring the elite ACC and its storied men’s basketball tournament history to Brooklyn,” said Barclays Center CEO Brett Yormark. “We’re looking forward to extending our Atlantic 10 partnership starting in 2019 through 2021 and creating competitive inter-conference doubleheaders with the ACC and the A-10. I want to thank ACC Commissioner John Swofford and Atlantic 10 Commissioner Bernadette McGlade for their commitment to Barclays Center and to Brooklyn. It’s clear that our position with both Conferences validates Barclays Center as the leading college basketball venue in the country.”

“We are pleased that the ACC Basketball Tournament will be played at Barclays Center in 2017 and 2018,” said ACC Commissioner John Swofford. “Barclays Center has quickly emerged as one of the premier sports and entertainment venues in the world and Brooklyn is a hot spot within the New York marketplace, which is an important part of our league’s new footprint. I appreciate the cooperation and ongoing relationship with Bernadette McGlade and I want to thank Brett Yormark for his tireless efforts as this is an outstanding opportunity for our players, coaches, alumni and fans that continue to support the ACC and our 15 member institutions.”

“Playing the A-10 Championship in Barclays Center is fantastic, and securing a three year extension is a great opportunity for the conference. Working in a collaborative way with Brett Yormark and John Swofford to negotiate a plan that is a win-win for all involved has been a good experience,” stated Atlantic 10 Commissioner Bernadette V. McGlade. “This agreement that creates a scheduling partnership, the ability to play the A-10 Championship in other areas of our footprint and returning to the NY market is exciting, securing a solid future for the A-10.”

The ACC Tournament has been held in seven different cities and 11 venues since the inaugural event in March of 1954. The Greensboro (N.C.) Coliseum serves as host in 2015 and Washington D.C. will host the tournament in 2016.

The Atlantic 10 Men’s Basketball Championship just completed its second year at Barclays Center following six years at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City. It has also been held in Cincinnati, Ohio, Philadelphia, Pa. and Dayton, Ohio.

Bucks sign D.J. Stephens to 10-day contract

The Milwaukee Bucks have signed free-agent guard/forward D.J. Stephens (6-5, 188) to a 10-day contract, General Manager John Hammond announced today.

Stephens joins the Bucks from Ilysiakos in the Greek League, where he signed after going undrafted in the 2013 NBA Draft. The former Memphis Tiger has appeared in 18 games for Ilysiakos and averaged 9.8 points, 8.8 rebounds, 1.1 assists and 2.2 blocks per contest. Stephens has scored in double figures in eight contests, including a season-best 19 points on 8-of-11 shooting in a loss to Panathinaikos on Dec. 2.

The Conference USA Defensive Player of the Year in in 2012-13, Stephens enjoyed a four-year career at Memphis in which he appeared in 129 games and shot 62.7 percent from the field – the second-best career mark in Tigers history. Stephens’ collegiate career peaked during his senior season in which he averaged 7.6 points, 6.6 rebounds and 2.6 blocks per game en route to All-Conference USA Third Team honors. His 95 total blocks on the year are the fourth-most in a single season in Memphis history. Stephens’ Memphis teams won the Conference USA Tournament during each of his final three seasons.

Stephens will wear #15 for the Bucks.

Watch some up-close video of Tim Hardaway Jr (Knicks) and Jodie Meeks (Lakers) from Tuesday in Los Angeles:

Quick video clip of Clippers center DeAndre Jordan as he talks about playing defense, with the TV show “Inside Stuff.”

Here’s the Dallas Morning News blog reporting on the Mavericks, owner Mark Cuban and veteran star Dirk Nowitzki:

Last week, Mavericks owner Mark Cuban sort-of called out Dirk Nowitzki, saying the Mavericks needed more defense and rebounding from the future Hall of Fame forward, especially on nights when he isn’t shooting well.

Tonight, Cuban watched Nowitzki score 32 points, pull down 10 rebounds, add six assists and four steals in a 128-119 overtime victory over Oklahoma City.

Is this what you were hoping for, Mark?

“It’s not a surprise,” Cuban said. “That’s what he does.”

Cuban laughed when asked if he would take credit for lighting a fire under Nowitzki. “No, absolutely not,” he said. “It’s all Dirk.”

Besides, Cuban’s semi-critical comments occurred a full week ago. In between, the Mavericks played four games, two of them overtime losses.

In his most recent game, Sunday’s 107-104 home overtime loss to Brooklyn, Nowitzki shot 2-of-12 from the field and scored only 10 points.

Cuban, though, knew Nowitzki would bounce back.

Here’s the Minneapolis Star Tribune reporting on the Timberwolves, who are 34-35 this season and now 7 games behind the Phoenix Suns, who are 9th in the West.

Timberwolves star Kevin Love’s frustration over another loss and his team missing the playoffs for a 10th consecutive season became the stuff of Internet chatter Tuesday, the day after he delivered a down and distracted interview following a loss at Memphis.

Deadspin.com linked the video and concluded with a headline that “Kevin Love Is a Broken Man.” It also theorized these could be Love’s final days as a Timberwolf and suggested the team’s fans are enjoying this part of the season more than Love is.

While that is uncertain, it is certain that Love is not alone in his irritation.

“It’s always frustrating when things don’t go your way,” Wolves coach Rick Adelman said before Monday’s 109-92 blowout loss. “But it also tells you about people when you’re going through frustration. How do you react to that? In this league you have to be resilient. You have to react. I know Kevin’s frustrated. I am, too. When I take him out of the game, it seems like we can’t find too many answers. That’s just the way it is right now.

‘‘I’m frustrated I haven’t been able to find a more consistent rotation. But I don’t know, you just keep trying things.”

Here’s the Philadelphia Inquirer reporting on the 76ers, who have a 15-56 record and have lost 25 games in a row.

The 76ers are the laughingstock of professional sports. They have been for weeks and have crept within one game of the NBA record for most losses in a row.

The league’s new commissioner has taken notice.

“You don’t like to see any team go through a losing streak like they currently are, or flirt with the longest losing streak in the history of the league,” Adam Silver told reporters Monday in Charlotte, N.C. “That’s bad for everyone. It’s potentially damaging to the players involved and the culture they’re trying to create.”

Sixers coach Brett Brown said Tuesday that he respects the commissioner’s opinion but added that Silver doesn’t need to worry about the Sixers.

“We are fine,” Brown said as the team prepared to play the Houston Rockets in what could be a record-tying loss Thursday at the Toyota Center. “We have this thing very much under control. There is no need for panic. My guys are great.”

Xavier Henry scored 22 points, Nick Young hit five 3-pointers while scoring 20 points, and the Los Angeles Lakers dropped a franchise-record 51 points in the third quarter of their 127-96 victory over the New York Knicks on Tuesday night.

Kent Bazemore scored 18 points as the Lakers won consecutive games for the first time in more than three weeks with a phenomenal offensive effort against the Knicks, who have lost two straight after an eight-game winning streak.

Knicks President Phil Jackson watched his new team and his former club from a luxury suite high above the court.

Carmelo Anthony scored 29 points for the Knicks, who couldn’t stop the Lakers’ patchwork roster from hitting 18 3-pointers in the opener of New York’s five-game West Coast road trip.

Young hit five 3-pointers, and Jodie Meeks added four as Los Angeles finished one 3-pointer shy of the single-game club record.

– Associated Press

The Knicks had talked about needing to go 5-0 on this West Coast trip to put themselves in good position but instead they look like a team destined to go 0-5. It gave Jackson ammunition to blow up this thing after the season. They face the Kings in Sacramento Wednesday.

The 51 points was a franchise record for futility for most points allowed in a single quarter. Mike D’Antoni’s Lakers (24-46) could set their worst record since moving to Los Angeles in 1960, but the Knicks made them look like the Showtime Lakers.

– New York Post

Basketball blog