Archive for July 1st, 2014

George David steps down as Pistons assistant general manager

The Detroit Pistons announced today that George David has stepped down as assistant general manager for the team.

“George David has informed general manager Jeff Bower and I that he has made the decision to step down as assistant general manager,” said Stan Van Gundy, Detroit Piston Head Coach and President of Basketball Operations. “We wish George well in his future endeavors.”

“17 years, an NBA Championship, and a multitude of spectacular people make me truly grateful for the experience I had with the Detroit Pistons,” said David. “I want to wish Stan and his staff the best as they go forward. And, I want to especially thank Tom Gores, Bob Wentworth, and Phil Norment for not only their true professionalism but also their class and friendship. I could not have asked for anything more.”

David was promoted to his current position in July of 2012 and has served in various front office roles during his 17 years with the team. He served as director of player personnel from 2007-2012 and also director of scouting, a position he was appointed to in August of 2002. The Detroit native was first hired as video coordinator by former head coach Doug Collins during the 1996-97 season.

Grizzlies decline to extend a qualifying offer to Ed Davis

The Memphis Grizzlies have elected not to extend a qualifying offer to forward Ed Davis, making him an unrestricted free agent, the team announced today.

Davis (6-10, 225) has averaged 5.5 points and 4.2 rebounds on .529 shooting in 15.2 minutes in 99 games (eight starts) with Memphis since he was acquired from the Toronto Raptors in a three-team trade also involving the Detroit Pistons on Jan. 31, 2013.

Drafted in the first round (No. 13 overall) of the 2010 NBA Draft, the 25-year-old holds career averages of 6.9 points and 5.9 rebounds on .542 shooting in 20.8 minutes in 275 games (58 starts) for Toronto and Memphis. The Washington, D.C. native owns postseason averages of 1.3 points and 1.7 rebounds on .364 shooting in 4.9 minutes in 15 playoff contests with the Grizzlies.

Photo: Celtics dance team auditions

Final auditions are ongoing for the Boston Celtics dance team. I will use this as an excuse to post the following photo:

The Minnesota Timberwolves today announced Ryan Saunders as an assistant coach, joining David Adelman, Sidney Lowe and Sam Mitchell on head coach Flip Saunders’ staff.

“Ryan brings a unique skill set of player development, analytics and team preparation to our team,” said general manager Milt Newton. “He played a key role in the development of Washington’s rising stars John Wall and Bradley Beal, and he served as the primary scout last season as the Wizards won their first playoff series since 2004-05. His ability to develop young talent, as well as his statistical analysis and game preparation techniques, will be an extremely valuable addition to our team.”

A University of Minnesota graduate, Saunders spent the last five seasons as an assistant with the Washington Wizards. In Washington, he was instrumental in assisting with the preparation for upcoming opponents with extensive scouting reports and statistical analysis. Prior to his time with the Wizards, Saunders was as an assistant for a season on Tubby Smith’s staff at the University of Minnesota, where he helped lead the Golden Gophers to an NCAA tournament appearance. In addition to his on-court work, Saunders helped players with their academic and social development off the court.

As well as his coaching experience, Saunders brings an analytical background to the Wolves coaching staff. He is the co-founder of an in-game analytical program, Gametime Concepts, which focuses on in-game analysis and statistical probabilities. Gametime Concepts is used by a number of NBA and NCAA teams.

The Milwaukee Bucks today named Jason Kidd as the team’s new head coach. The Bucks signed Kidd after the Brooklyn Nets agreed to release him from his contract in exchange for two second round picks in the 2015 and 2019 NBA Drafts. Kidd will be the 14th head coach in the history of the Bucks franchise. He joins Milwaukee following a 19-year Hall-of-Fame-caliber NBA playing career and, most recently, serving as head coach of the Brooklyn Nets.

“When you list the characteristics that make a successful head coach, you would include leadership, communication and a competitive drive,” said Hammond. “Jason used all of those traits to become a 10-time All-Star player in the NBA, and has now translated his on-court success to the bench. We welcome him to the Bucks organization and look forward to building a Championship-caliber team with him as our head coach.”

“Jason is a determined leader, a tough-minded competitor and a great teammate,” said Bucks owners Wesley Edens and Marc Lasry. “We believe his focus, vision and intensity will help him work alongside John and David (Morway) to rebuild the Milwaukee Bucks as we aspire to achieve excellence over the next several years. We are excited that Jason will call Milwaukee his new home.”

Kidd, 41, most recently served as head coach of the Brooklyn Nets where he guided the team to a 44-38 record, earned the sixth seed in the Eastern Conference Playoffs, and was named Eastern Conference Coach of the Month twice. The Nets upset the three-seed Toronto Raptors in seven games in the First Round before falling to the Miami Heat in the Second Round.

Before becoming a head coach, Kidd enjoyed an exceptional 19-year NBA playing career, which included 10 All-Star Game appearances and an NBA Championship in 2011 as a member of the Dallas Mavericks. He was named to the All-NBA First Team five times, All-NBA Second Team once, to the NBA’s All-Defensive First Team four times and All-Defensive Second Team five times. Kidd also won gold medals with Team USA in the 2000 Olympics in Sydney and the 2008 Olympics in Beijing.

When Kidd retired in 2013, he ranked second all-time in NBA assists and steals behind John Stockton. His 107 triple-doubles are third all-time behind Oscar Robertson and Magic Johnson. He also ranks third on the League’s all-time lists in minutes and 3-point field goals, sixth in games played, first among guards in rebounds and 71st in points scored. He joined Grant Hill as one of two players in the NBA to win the Joe Dumars Trophy – given to the winner of the annual NBA Sportsmanship Award – multiple times. Kidd received the honor following the 2011-12 and 2012-13 seasons.

The second overall pick of the Dallas Mavericks in the 1994 NBA Draft, Kidd shared Co-Rookie of the Year honors with Grant Hill. He played in 1,391 regular season games with Dallas, Phoenix, New Jersey and New York. His teams qualified for the postseason 17 times, and he played in 158 playoff games, including three trips to the NBA Finals (2002, 2003 – New Jersey; 2011 – Dallas).

Born March 23, 1973, in San Francisco, Kidd played two seasons at the University of California, where he averaged 14.9 points, 8.4 assists and 5.9 rebounds, and was a Consensus All-America selection in 1994.

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