Archive for September 13th, 2018

Bucks and WTMJ Radio expand partnership

The Milwaukee Bucks and WTMJ Radio have expanded their long-time partnership, with WTMJ continuing as the radio home of the team. Bucks games this upcoming season will air on 620 AM and 103.3 FM with Ted Davis and Dennis Krause calling the action. WTMJ Radio will remain the flagship station of the statewide BMO Harris Bucks Radio Network.

As part of the new agreement, Bucks games that will not air on 620 AM or 103.3 FM because of conflicts will now air on 94.5 FM WKTI, a partner of WTMJ Radio. New features of the agreement include a one-hour Bucks Weekly Show and a half-hour Coach’s Show that will air on WTMJ Radio each week during the season.

“WTMJ Radio has been a terrific home for Bucks games for 50 years, and we’re excited to extend our relationship as we enter our first season at Fiserv Forum,” said Bucks President Peter Feigin. “This is a great time for the Bucks and our fans, and we are excited to enhance our presence on WTMJ Radio with weekly Bucks shows.”

“The Bucks and WTMJ are proud partners,” said Tom Langmyer, vice president and general manager of WTMJ and WKTI and vice president, news/talk/sports for The E.W. Scripps Company (NASDAQ: SSP). “We’re pleased to grow the partnership as the Bucks move into the beautiful new Fiserv Forum - and excited for WTMJ Radio as it segues from Scripps to Craig Karmazin’s Good Karma Brands.”

As he enters his 40th season as the “Voice of the Clippers,” legendary broadcaster Ralph Lawler has announced his plan to retire after the 2018-19 NBA season. Over the course of his tenure, his commentary has captivated fans across the sports world, creating a legacy that will last far beyond his final season.

“My wife Jo and I have grappled with this decision annually for 15 years. I now realize that I have spent half of my 80 years as a part of this team. The Clippers are a big part of my life’s DNA,” said Lawler. “Yet, it is important that we have some ‘life after basketball.’ The current ownership and management team has been so supportive, and we are forever grateful for our years with the Clippers. I cannot express how much I appreciate the fans. I am looking forward to thanking as many of them as possible in person during this final season.”

Lawler, 80, joined the then San Diego Clippers in the team’s first year in California, 1978, where he spent six years before moving with the Clippers to Los Angeles. Since, he has called more than 3,100 games. Lawler has distinguished himself as one of the broadcasting industry’s elite, as he is one of a very few announcers who has called games in each of the four major U.S. Sports Leagues: NFL (Chargers), MLB (Phillies), NHL (Flyers) and NBA (Clippers and 76ers).

“Ralph Lawler isn’t just the voice of the team, he has been the heart and soul of the Clippers,” said Clippers Chairman Steve Ballmer. “Ralph has lived every single moment with this team and been an essential connection between us and our fans, who rightfully adore him. We will treasure every moment with Ralph and his wife Jo this season, and miss him incredibly next year. I’m looking forward to celebrating Ralph and his legacy, and want to sincerely thank him for everything that he has done for and meant to this team. His will be large shoes to fill.”

Lawler’s commitment to his craft has been recognized with a Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, three Emmys, a Telly Award and inductions into the Southern California Sports Broadcasters Hall of Fame and the California Sports Hall of Fame.

Heat exercise contract options on Bam Adebayo

The Miami Heat yesterday exercised their third-year team option on Bam Adebayo.

Adebayo, who was selected in the first round (14th overall) by the HEAT in the 2017 NBA Draft, appeared in 69 games (19 starts) last season with Miami and averaged 6.9 points, 5.5 rebounds, 1.5 assists and 19.8 minutes while shooting 51.2 percent from the field. Among NBA rookies last season, he ranked fourth in field goal percentage, sixth in rebounds per game and ninth in blocks per game as his 41 blocks ranked fourth on the HEAT’s all-time rookie list.

During the season, Adebayo posted a 16-point, 15-rebound double-double while blocking five shots on January 9 at Toronto, becoming just the second rookie in NBA history to post at least those numbers off the bench (since blocks became a stat in 1973-74) and just the fourth HEAT player ever to post a 16-point, 15-rebound, 5-block game, joining Rony Seikaly, Alonzo Mourning and Hassan Whiteside. In that same game, he helped Miami out-rebound the Raptors by a +27 margin (64-37), tying for the fifth-highest rebound margin in team history. He started last season with a 13-point, 13-rebound double-double in just his fourth NBA game on October 30 vs. Minnesota, marking as the fifth-fastest HEAT player to post a double-double in franchise history. His 10 offensive boards in the contest are the most by a rookie in team history during a single-game and tied for the sixth-most by a rookie in the NBA over the last 17 years. Additionally, he grabbed 16 rebounds on March 14 at Sacramento, tying the second-most by a rookie in team history and he shot a perfect 7-of-7 from the field on November 28 at Cleveland, becoming the only rookie in HEAT history to not miss a shot with at least that many attempts as he was also a perfect 5-of-5 from the line in the contest, marking just the second time in franchise history a HEAT player was perfect from the field and the charity stripe with a minimum of five attempts each. The former Wildcat appeared in 38 games (all starts) as a freshman at Kentucky and averaged 13.0 points, 8.0 rebounds, 1.50 blocks and 30.1 minutes while shooting 59.9 percent from the field. He was selected to the All-SEC Second Team and the All-SEC All-Tournament Team after helping the Wildcats win the SEC Championship.

Former Spurs assistant Don Newman dies

Here’s the San Antonio Express News with some sad news on a former Spurs assistant:

Don Newman, an assistant coach who served on the staff of a pair of Spurs championship teams, has died after a battle with cancer. He was 60.

Newman was a member of coach Gregg Popovich’s staff from 2004-2012, helping the Spurs win titles in 2005 and 2007.

He left the Spurs in 2012 to become the lead assistant under Randy Wittman in Washington, where he remained until 2016.

Newman died Tuesday. Funeral services are pending.

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Here’s the Memphis Commercial Appeal reporting on the Grizzlies and the advantages that come with having their own G League team. Of course, most NBA teams have this luxury now. But different teams are using their G League affiliates to different extents. As for the Grizzlies:

Additionally, the close-proximity model seen with the Grizzlies and the Hustle is becoming the norm. Grizzlies officials have lauded the geographical improvement. The Atlanta Hawks purchased the Erie BayHawks last year, and will move the team from Pennsylvania to College Park in Atlanta beginning next season. The Kings moved their affiliate to nearby Stockton, California, the Magic have a team in Lakeland, Florida, and the Clippers now have a G-League team in Ontario, less than an hour from Staples Center.

Amid a disappointing last season, the Grizzlies were able to make expedited use of two-way players Kobi Simmons and Myke Henry because of the Hustle’s location. Simmons ended up playing more games for the Grizzlies than the Hustle. All of this certainly bodes well for new two-way signing Yuta Watanabe, and it could potentially be helpful for other players.

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