Archive for April 1st, 2014

Lakers buy land for new training center

The Los Angeles Lakers announced today that they have entered into an agreement with CDC Mar Campus, LLC for the purchase of an approximately five acre undeveloped portion of the development known as Elevon at Campus El Segundo located in El Segundo, CA.

The site is at the northwest corner of Mariposa Avenue and Douglas Street.

The site is intended to be the future home of a brand new training center for the Lakers and its Development League team, the Los Angeles D-Fenders.

The facility will also house the business operations offices for both teams.

The completion of the purchase is subject to various conditions, including the approval by the City of El Segundo of the proposed use of the property by the Lakers.

Brandon Jennings

Detroit Pistons guard Brandon Jennings has been fined $5,000 by the NBA for violating the league’s anti-flopping rules for the second time this season.

The incident occurred with 3:01 remaining in the fourth quarter of Detroit’s 116-111 victory over the Milwaukee Bucks on Monday, March 31 at Palace of Auburn Hills.

To view the play, click on this link.

Watch this video clip of the top 10 NBA circus shots of March, 2014:

Ike Diogu won D-League Player of Month award

Bakersfield Jam forward Ike Diogu was today named NBA Development League Player of the Month for games played in March. The award is the first of Diogu’s career.

Diogu (6-8, 255, Arizona State) led Bakersfield to a 10-3 record in March, including a 7-2 road record and a seven-game winning streak between March 12 and March 26. For the month, Diogu averaged 21.4 points, shooting 59 percent from the field, to go with 12.3 rebounds and 1.0 blocks. He recorded a double-double in 12 of his 13 games in March, notching two 30-plus point outings.

On March 19, Diogu recorded a season-high 19 rebounds to go with 30 points in a 114-106 road win over the Texas Legends. The following week, on March 30, he tied his season high with 32 points in a 115-109 win at the Santa Cruz Warriors.

For the season, Diogu is averaging 18.0 points on 55 percent shooting, to go with 9.4 rebounds, good for sixth-best in the NBA D-League.

Additional players considered for the award included Austin’s Flip Murray, Canton’s Shane Edwards, Erie’s Lewis Jackson, Fort Wayne’s Tony Mitchell, Iowa’s Moses Ehambe, Othyus Jeffers and Curtis Stinson, Los Angeles’ Shawne Williams, Maine’s Frank Gaines, Santa Cruz’s Cameron Jones, Sioux Fall’s Henry Walker, Springfield’s Jeff Foote and Texas’ Damion James.

The Brooklyn Nets’ Jason Kidd and the San Antonio Spurs’ Gregg Popovich today were named the NBA Eastern and Western Conference Coaches of the Month, respectively, for games played in March.

Kidd guided the Nets to a 12-4 record in March, and the highest winning percentage (.750) in the Eastern Conference. Brooklyn posted a 9-0 record at Barclays Center and was the only Eastern Conference team to go undefeated at home. On March 12, the Nets defeated the Miami Heat 96-95, which improved Brooklyn’s mark to 3-0 this season against the defending champions. This is the second Coach of the Month award for Kidd this season (January).

Popovich led the Spurs to an NBA-best 16-0 record in March, propelling them to a 58-16 record, tops in the NBA. Eleven of San Antonio’s 16 wins in March were by 10-or-more points, and the Spurs scored 100-or-more points in 13-of-16 games. The Spurs closed the month with a 103-77 road victory over the Indiana Pacers on March 31, and enter April riding a franchise-record 18-game winning streak.

Other nominees for Coach of the Month were Charlotte’s Steve Clifford, Houston’s Kevin McHale, Los Angeles Clippers’ Doc Rivers, New York’s Mike Woodson, Oklahoma City’s Scott Brooks, Phoenix’s Jeff Hornacek and Toronto’s Dwane Casey.

Here’s the Sacramento Bee reporting on Kings center DeMarcus Cousins and an early April 1 joke:

DeMarcus Cousins created a stir on the Internet on Sunday night.

And he had fun doing so.

Pictures surfaced of Cousins’ first “album” under the name Boogie Smooth titled “Misunderstood,” with the first single being a rhythm and blues groove titled “Emotional” featuring Chance The Rapper.

Cousins even asked via Twitter on Monday if he could be any worse than Shaquille O’Neal or Chris Webber, who also dabbled in music during their careers.

But Boogie Smooth’s career is all in fun. Cousins, who is friends with rap stars Drake and Rick Ross, is not about to become a part-time R&B crooner.

Cousins laughed when asked about the musical project, as did his teammates. Coach Michael Malone even found the musical venture comical.

Here’s the Indianapolis Star with a look at the Pacers, who have been less than spectacular for a while now:

A slump? A hiccup? No, it’s a whole lot more than that. After Monday night’s 103-77 blowout loss to the San Antonio Spurs at Bankers Life Fieldhouse, the Pacers have lost 10 of their last 16 games and six of their last eight. After that 33-7 start, when they were the toast of the NBA and had everybody lauding their selflessness, the Pacers have now gone 19-16. That’s not a slump. That’s a month-and-a-half, two months’ worth of mediocrity. That’s who they are now.

This is just like the 2002-03 Isiah Thomas-coached Pacers, who ran out to the league’s best record the first half of the season, then sleep-walked the rest of the season before getting eliminated in the first round by the Boston Celtics.

For too long, they’ve been acting like they actually accomplished something, like they should be entitled to officials’ calls and special treatment. Paul George’s play and his whining have been especially galling. Remember when we talked about him in the same sentence with MVP front runners LeBron James and Kevin Durant? That seems like a million years ago.

George has been ordinary, or worse, since the All-Star break. Hibbert has disappeared for long stretches of time. David West, the nominal leader of this team, has been inconsistent. Evan Turner, the late-season acquisition, has been miserable, especially on defense.

Monday night, Lance Stephenson was the only Pacer who played with urgency and energy.

Here’s NBA.com reporting on the Sacramento Kings and Rudy Gay:

He says he has not made a decision on the $19.3 million on the table or whether he wants to remain with the Kings at any price. He has so not made a decision, Rudy Gay insists, that he is asked to list a couple factors that will go into the final call and responds, “I don’t know.”

It is long after another loss at Sleep Train Arena, this time to the Knicks, in a near-empty locker room after most teammates have left. Gay is sitting in front of his stall, showered and changed and contemplating the unexpected search for career stability.

Memphis for 6 ½ seasons, and then suddenly Toronto and Sacramento in a little more than 10 months, and the career intersection over whether to stay in the current contract with $19.3 million on the books for 2014-15 or declare himself a free agent is approaching. In that setting, feeling so undefined about the future is actually understandable.

“What does my gut tell me?” Gay says of the looming decision and possibly decisions, plural. “I don’t know. My gut tells me different things every day.”

Video highlights of the NBA plays of the week, through March 30, 2014:

Video: NBA bloopers from March, 2014

Enjoy this video of NBA bloopers from March, 2014:

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