Nets owner reportedly plans to sell team

Here’s the New York Post reporting on the Brooklyn Nets, who may find themselves with a new owner — though the entire process may span a few years:

Nets owner reportedly plans to sell team

Brooklyn Nets owner Mikhail Prokhorov is ready for a long goodbye.

The Russian billionaire, unable to sell a minority stake in the money-losing NBA franchise, now plans to off-load a controlling stake in the team, two sources close to the situation told The Post.

However, Prokhorov is hoping to sell the Nets in a two-part process, the sources said. First, the 52-year-old will look to sell a minority piece of the team — but give the buyer the right to buy the entire team in a short period of time — say three years, the sources said.

Magic re-sign Damjan Rudez

Magic re-sign Damjan Rudez

The Orlando Magic have re-signed free agent forward Damjan Rudez (pronunciation: DAHM-yahn ROO dezh), President of Basketball Operations Jeff Weltman announced today.

Rudež (#3, 6’10”, 228, 6/17/86) appeared in 45 games last season with the Magic, averaging 1.8 ppg. in 7.0 minpg. Not drafted by an NBA franchise, he has played in 146 career NBA regular season games (two starts) with Indiana, Minnesota and Orlando (2014-17), averaging 3.3 ppg. in 11.2 minpg., while shooting .373 (106-284) from three-point range. Rudež is a former member of the Croatian Senior National Team.

Orlando’s roster now stands at 19 players.

Pacers sign DeQuan Jones and Trey McKinney-Jones

The Indiana Pacers announced Thursday they have signed 6-8 forward DeQuan Jones and 6-5 guard Trey McKinney-Jones to contracts.

DeQuan Jones was undrafted out of the University of Miami in 2012 and played with the Orlando Magic in 2012-13. He played with Reno in the NBA G League one season and has played internationally the last three seasons.

Trey McKinney-Jones also played at the University of Miami and was undrafted in 2013. He has had three stints with the Fort Wayne Mad Ants of the NBA G League while also playing internationally the last three seasons.

Bucks sign James Young

Bucks sign James Young

The Milwaukee Bucks have signed free agent guard James Young to a training camp contract.

Young, 22, was the 17th overall selection in the 2014 NBA Draft by the Boston Celtics. He played in 89 games over three seasons with Boston and averaged 2.3 points and 1.1 rebounds per contest. In two seasons (2014-16) with the Maine Red Claws of the NBA G League, Young averaged 18.7 points, 5.4 rebounds, 1.9 assists and 1.3 steals while shooting 40.6 percent from three-point distance.

Originally from Flint, Mich., Young played one season at the University of Kentucky and averaged 14.3 points, 4.3 rebounds and 1.7 assists per game.

The Atlanta Hawks have signed Josh Magette to a two-way contract, and has also signed Tyler Cavanaugh, it was announced today by General Manager and Head of Basketball Operations Travis Schlenk.

A 6’1 guard, Magette (ma-JET) spent time during the 2016 preseason with the Hawks and was part of the team’s NBA Summer League roster in 2017.

Last season, Magette started 50 games for the Los Angeles D-Fenders of the NBA G League, averaging 15.8 points, 9.4 assists, 4.5 rebounds and 1.5 steals in 35.3 minutes. He led the G League in assists per game for the second straight season, and was named Second Team All-G League.

Magette played in 45 games (all starts) in 2015-16 with D-Fenders, averaging 11.5 points, 9.1 assists, 4.5 rebounds and 2.5 steals in 38.0 minutes, leading the G League in both assists and steals per game.

He also has played professionally with Koroivos (Greece) and Landstede (Netherlands).

A native of Hoover, AL (Spain Park HS), Magette played four years at Alabama-Huntsville, where he was Gulf South Conference co-Player of the Year as a senior in 2012. He will wear jersey No. 11.

The 2017-18 season will mark the first year of two-way contracts in the NBA. Only players with four-or-fewer years of NBA experience are permitted to sign two-way contracts. Per league rules, teams are allowed to have up to two two-way players on their roster at any given time, in addition to their 15-man regular season roster. A two-way player for the Hawks will primarily play for the team’s NBA G League affiliate (the Erie BayHawks) but can spend up to 45 days with Atlanta, not including any time prior to the start of Erie’s training camp and at the conclusion of their season.

Cavanaugh was also a member of the Hawks’ Summer League team, competing in Las Vegas this past July.

He spent his first two college seasons at Wake Forest before transferring to George Washington. As a graduate student at GW last season, he appeared in 35 games (all starts), leading the team in points (18.3), rebounds (8.4), free throws made (173) and attempted (204) in 32.2 minutes (.448 FG%, .409 3FG%, .848 FT%). He was named to the A-10 All-Conference Second Team and the All-Academic Team.

The 6’9 Cavanaugh started 38 games in 2015-16 and put in 16.8 points, 7.6 rebounds and 1.2 assists in 30.4 minutes (.505 FG%, .417 3FG%, .827 FT%), leading the Colonials to the National Invitational Tournament (NIT) title, earning Most Outstanding Player honors. He averaged 8.8 points and 3.8 rebounds in 21.2 minutes in 33 games as a sophomore at Wake Forest, and tallied 5.0 points and 2.5 rebounds in 16.7 minutes as a freshman in 31 contests. He will wear No. 34.

Hawks sign Quinn Cook

The Atlanta Hawks have signed Quinn Cook, it was announced today by General Manager and Head of Basketball Operations Travis Schlenk.

Cook split time last season, his rookie year in the NBA, between the Dallas Mavericks (five games) and New Orleans Pelicans (nine games), averaging 5.6 points and 1.9 assists in 13.4 minutes (.500 FG%, .423 3FG%).

He appeared in 82 games (75 starts) between 2015-17 with the Canton Charge of the NBA G League, and averaged 22.6 points, 6.0 assists, 4.0 rebounds and 1.2 steals in 36.0 minutes (.371 FG%, .377 3FG%, .882 FT%). The 2016 G League Rookie of the Year, Cook is a two-time G League All-Star, was named First Team All-G League in 2017 and Third Team in 2016. He was also the league’s All-Star Game MVP last season.

The 6’2 guard played four years (2011-15) for Duke University, and as a senior, put in 16.0 points, 3.3 rebounds, 2.8 assists and 1.0 steals in 35.9 minutes, earning Second Team All-America honors from Sporting News in helping lead the Blue Devils to the National Championship.

Cook is a native of Washington, DC and attended DeMatha Catholic High School in Hyattsville, MD before transferring to Oak Hill Academy in Mouth of Wilson, VA. He will wear jersey No. 4.

Miami Heat sign Larry Drew II

The Miami HEAT announced today that they have signed guard Larry Drew II.

Earlier this month, Drew II won a gold medal as a member of the United States team at the 2017 FIBA AmeriCup. He appeared in five games and averaged 4.6 points, 5.0 assists, 2.0 rebounds, 1.00 steals and 19.4 minutes while shooting 52.9 percent from the floor.

During the 2016-17 season, Drew II played in 10 games (one start) as a member of the Sioux Falls Skyforce and averaged 8.1 points, 5.9 assists, 2.7 rebounds and 23.5 minutes while shooting 47.7 percent from the floor, 40 percent from three-point range and 71.4 percent from the foul line. He also played internationally in Lithuania with BC Neptūnas during the 2016-17 season and in Puerto Rico with the Pirates de Quebradillas. Drew II saw action in 21 games with BC Neptūnas in Lithuanian Basketball League play and averaged 8.2 points, 5.6 assists, 3.0 rebounds, 1.05 steals and 25.2 minutes. In Basketball Champions League play with BC Neptūnas, he appeared in 14 games and averaged 9.2 points, 5.3 assists, 2.4 rebounds, 1.00 steals and 23.6 minutes. In six games with the Pirates de Quebradillas of the Puerto Rico-BSN (Baloncesto Superior Nacional) he averaged 7.7 points, 5.2 assists, 1.5 rebounds and 22.7 minutes.

In 96 career NBA G League games, all with Sioux Falls, Drew II has averaged 10.8 points, 7.8 assists, 3.4 rebounds, 1.48 steals and 33.6 minutes while shooting 47.6 percent from the floor, 41.6 percent from three-point range and 71.4 percent from the foul line. Drew II, who was a member of the Skyforce’s 2015-16 NBA G League championship team, holds the NBA G League single-game assist record with 23 in a win over the Rio Grande Valley Vipers on Dec. 25, 2014.

Drew II has previously been in training camp with the HEAT in both 2013 and 2014. His lone NBA regular season experience came during the 2014-15 season when he appeared in 12 games (one start) with the Philadelphia 76ers and averaged 3.8 points, 3.7 assists, 1.2 rebounds and 18.3 minutes.

Skyforce G League tryouts postponed

Here’s the South Florida Sun Sentinel reporting on the Miami Heat’s G League affiliate team, who were forced by Mother Nature to postpone their upcoming open tryouts:

Miami Heat’s open tryouts for their developmental-league affiliate, the NBA G League Sioux Falls Skyforce, have been postponed from Sunday until Sept. 24 due to the uncertainly of Hurricane Irma.

The tryouts scheduled for Sept. 16 in Sioux Falls will continue to be held as scheduled.

Both tryout sessions will come in front of Skyforce coaches and Heat officials, with potential invitations to follow to the Skyforce’s training camp in October.

Rockets backcourt expectations

James Harden did it all last season for the Rockets. He was truly two players in one: a great point guard and an amazing shooting guard. If he wasn’t scoring, he was probably setting a teammate up for a good shot in proper position.

Now, Chris Paul enters the mix. That’s a good thing, right?

Well, sure. Probably. He’s CP3. Still plays like himself. Getting up there in age, but not washed up yet.

And common sense says if you add a talent like Paul to any team, they should improve.

Things should work out. But there may be some minor, temporary growing pains. Because as good as Paul is, can he do a better job of creating than Harden did?

There’s no actual real problem here. It’s more of a fascination, in seeing how the chemistry develops. The team, even if they take a temporary half-step back before advancing forward, should certainly be as good as they were last season.

Should be a fun show.

Here’s the Salt Lake Tribune reporting on the Jazz, who would certainly like Rodney Hood to stick around — but only, of course, if the price is right:

Jazz and Rodney Hood reportedly in negotiations

The Utah Jazz and starting shooting guard Rodney Hood have opened contract extension negotiations, the Salt Lake Tribune has learned.

The two sides have had preliminary conversations as the Jazz hope Hood can become their primary perimeter scorer this season after Gordon Hayward left for the Boston Celtics. Another meeting is expected to occur in the next few weeks, according to league sources.

Hood, who will enter his fourth season in the league, is eligible for a rookie scale contract extension, with Oct. 16 the deadline to reach an agreement. Hood is one of two Jazz players eligible for an extension. Former lottery pick Dante Exum is the other.

Pelicans trade Quincy Pondexter to Bulls

The Chicago Bulls have acquired guard/forward Quincy Pondexter, the Pelicans 2018 second-round pick, and cash considerations from the New Orleans Pelicans in exchange for the draft rights to Ater Majok.

The Bulls acquired the rights to Majok (58th overall selection in the 2011 NBA Draft) from the L.A. Lakers on July 7, 2016.

Pondexter (6-7, 220) is a five-year veteran of the NBA who has seen time with New Orleans (2010-11, 2014-15) and Memphis (2011-15). He has posted career averages of 5.3 points and 2.0 rebounds through 279 games (47 starts). Pondexter has a career field goal percentage of .424, with a mark of .365 from the 3-point line. He has 29 postseason games on his resume, and has averaged 6.8 points and 2.6 rebounds through those contests with a .473 field goal percentage and .414 3-point percentage.

The University of Washington product missed both the 2015-16 and 2016-17 seasons due to left knee surgery.

Cameron Payne will undergo foot surgery

Cameron Payne will undergo foot surgery

Chicago Bulls guard Cameron Payne sustained a fracture of his right foot (5th metatarsal) during a workout on July 18. A six-week period of rest in a boot was then prescribed.

A subsequent CT scan and examination by Dr. Johnny Lin of Midwest Orthopedics at Rush on Tuesday revealed the fracture has not healed satisfactorily, and surgery is recommended.

For Payne, this is the same foot that he broke during the 2015-16 season as a member of the Oklahoma City Thunder.

He will undergo surgery on Wednesday, Sept. 6, and additional updates will be provided following his surgery.

Magic sign Troy Caupain and Kalin Lucas

Magic sign Troy Caupain and Kalin Lucas

The Orlando Magic have signed free agent guards Troy Caupain (pronunciation: CO-pain) and Kalin Lucas.

Caupain (#23, 6’4”, 210, 11/29/95) played in 137 career games (102 starts) during four years at the University of Cincinnati, averaging 9.6 ppg., 3.8 apg., 3.6 rpg. and 1.10 stlpg. in 29.8 minpg. Caupain is the first player in school history to record at least 1,300 points and 500 assists during his career. He is the Bearcats’ all-time assists leader with 515. Caupain also ranks on Cincinnati’s all-time list in career victories (second, 102), consecutive games played (second, 137), minutes played (third, 3,980) and games played (fourth, 137). He was named First Team All-American Athletic Conference in 2015-16 and Second Team All-American Athletic Conference in 2016-17.

Lucas (#27, 6’1”, 195, 5/24/89) appeared in 48 games (24 starts) last season with both the Iowa Energy and Erie BayHawks of the NBA G League, averaging 18.0 ppg., 5.1 apg. and 3.9 rpg. in 31.4 minpg. He has played in 112 games (79 starts) during three seasons (2013-15, 2016-17) in the NBA G League with both Iowa and Erie, averaging 17.7 ppg., 4.9 apg., 3.8 rpg. and 1.13 stlpg. in 32.6 minpg. Lucas spent four seasons at Michigan State University (2007-11), leaving as the school’s all-time leader in free throws made (507) and attempted (637). He is one of only four Spartans to record 1,500+ career points and 500+ career assists. As a sophomore (2008-09) Lucas was named Big Ten Player of the Year and helped Michigan State reach the 2009 NCAA Championship Game.

Bulls announce front office moves, including naming of Shawn Respert as Director of Player Development

The Chicago Bulls announced today that Shawn Respert has been named the team’s Director of Player Development and Arnold Lee has been promoted to the team as Assistant Athletic Trainer. On the coaching side, Windy City Bulls Head Coach Nate Loenser has returned to the Bulls to join Head Coach Fred Hoiberg’s coaching staff, while Assistant Coach Charlie Henry heads to Hoffman Estates as the Head Coach of Chicago’s G League affiliate.

Respert, an NBA veteran of four seasons, comes to the Bulls having served in multiple developmental roles as an assistant coach in the NBA. Most recently, he was a regional scout and assistant coach with the Memphis Grizzlies. While with the Grizzlies, he was a member of David Joerger’s staff for three seasons (2013-16). Prior to that, Respert spent three seasons in Minnesota as an assistant coach with an emphasis on player development. He also spent four seasons with the Houston Rockets as an assistant coach (2008-11). Before entering the coaching ranks, he spent two seasons as director of basketball operations for the NBA D-League (2006-08). The Detroit native worked in a similar capacity at Rice University where he was the Owls’ director of basketball operations for two seasons (2004-06). A former college Player of the Year at Michigan State (1990-95), the Portland Trail Blazers selected him with the eighth pick in the 1995 NBA Draft. Following a draft-night trade to the Milwaukee Bucks, he played for the Bucks (1995-97), the Toronto Raptors (1997-98), Dallas Mavericks (1998) and Phoenix Suns (1999). After his career in the NBA, he went on to play four more seasons in the European Basketball League.

“Shawn is a great addition to our staff. His knowledge of the game and track record in player development are a great fit for our team,” said Chicago Bulls Head Coach Fred Hoiberg. “He is respected in the NBA, and I know he is excited to begin working with our players.”

“I am excited to join an organization that has such a storied tradition like the Bulls. I am also thankful to have the chance to work with Fred Hoiberg and the rest of his staff,” said Respert. “Knowing the organization’s commitment to player development, I am here to support the players and coaches, as well as management, in our pursuit of developing and improving our team.”

Loenser reunites with the Bulls after serving as the head coach of Chicago’s G League affiliate in its inaugural season last year. While with the Windy City Bulls, he guided the team to a record of 23-27 (.460), while playing a role in helping to develop Chicago’s young players such as Denzel Valentine, Bobby Portis, Cristiano Felίcio, Jerian Grant and Paul Zipser. In 2015-16, Loenser served as Chicago’s video coordinator. During that time, he developed Bulls players and worked with Hoiberg and his staff to organize and present all scouting breakdowns for opponents, and edits of practice and game video. He also updated and maintained the Bulls’ offensive and defensive playbooks.

Lee has been promoted to the Bulls after spending last season as the head athletic trainer for the Windy City Bulls. In 2016, he served as a preseason intern with the Chicago Bears. Prior to that, he worked three years as the head athletic trainer at Kennedy King College in Chicago (2013-16). Lee graduated from the University of Illinois at Chicago with a B.S. in Kinesiology, and he holds a Masters in Athletic Training from California Baptist University.

Trail Blazers waive Andrew Nicholson

Forward Andrew Nicholson’s time on the Trail Blazers was short-lived.

The Blazers waived Nicholson today, president of basketball operations Neil Olshey announced.

Portland acquired Nicholson from the Brooklyn Nets on July 25 in exchange for Allen Crabbe.

The Sixers have signed forward James Michael McAdoo to a two-way contract, and also agreed to terms with guard James Blackmon Jr.

Per NBA rules, teams are permitted to sign two players to two-way contracts in addition to the 15-man NBA regular-season roster. A two-way player for the Sixers will provide services to the team’s G League affiliate – the Delaware 87ers – but can spend up to 45 days with the Sixers, not including any time spent with the Sixers prior to the start of Sevens’ training camp or following the conclusion of the Sevens’ regular season. McAdoo is the first player that the Sixers have signed to a two-way contract.

A three-year pro, McAdoo originally signed with Golden State on Sept. 2, 2014 following three seasons at the University of North Carolina. In 108 NBA games (three starts), he has averaged three points and two rebounds per game. A member of two championship-winning teams with the Warriors, McAdoo has seen action in 26 career playoff games. The 6-foot-9 forward has seen success in the G League as well, being named a 2015 All-Star, selected to the All-Rookie First Team and the All-NBA D-League Second Team as part of the league champion Santa Cruz Warriors.

McAdoo is a relative of Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Famer Bob McAdoo, who spent the final year of his 14-year career with the Sixers.

Blackmon Jr. played for the Sixers’ Summer League teams in the Utah Jazz Summer League and MGM Resorts NBA Summer League. He appeared in five games (one start) across the two leagues and posted an average of eight points in 16 minutes per game.

A 6-foot-4 guard, Blackmon Jr. played three seasons at Indiana University from 2015-17 and averaged 16 points, five rebounds and two assists per game over 76 contests (75 starts). A 2014 McDonald’s All American, Blackmon Jr. was named to the Big Ten All-Freshman team in his first season with the Hoosiers.

Timberwolves free agency update

At this point in the NBA offseason, most difference-making free agents have found homes for the upcoming season. But there’s still talent out there to be found. Here’s the St Paul Pioneer Press:

September is a few days away and the Wolves still have four roster spots to fill.

A few of those could be filled shortly. In a radio appearance Monday with Chad Hartman on WCCO-830 AM, Thibodeau said something “absolutely” should happen within the next two weeks. Minnesota is pressed up against the salary cap and only has minimum salaries to offer.

Thibideau said the Timberwolves have “some offers” out to players who are assessing their options. He said there are players available who have played roles, and even started, in the NBA…

Exactly who are those players? Thibodeau refused to say, but guys like Tony Allen, Dante Cunningham and Anthony Morrow make sense. One name Thibodeau confirmed the Wolves have talked to: Shabazz Muhammad, who the Wolves let become a free agent this summer.

The Portland Trail Blazers have announced a contract extension for President of Basketball Operations Neil Olshey, taking him through the 2020-21 season.

“Neil has done an excellent job improving our team and getting us into the playoffs. With our young and improving roster, I expect our franchise to keep improving,” said Trail Blazers owner Paul Allen. “Continuity in the front office is important as we continue to grow, and this extension shows the confidence we have in Neil’s leadership.”

“I appreciate the confidence Paul Allen has in myself and the entire Basketball Operations staff,” said Olshey. “I look forward to building on the foundation we have developed and the continued partnership with Bert Kolde, Chris McGowan, Terry Stotts and the entire Trail Blazers organization. On a personal note, I’m very happy for my family as we’ve really embraced Oregon and the incredible spirit of Rip City.”

Promoted to President of Basketball Operations in 2015, Olshey was named the 10th General Manager in franchise history on June 4, 2012, and finished his fifth season at the helm in 2016-17. In his role, Olshey leads the organization’s Basketball Operations, overseeing talent evaluation, player personnel decisions, contract negotiations and salary cap management.

Less than a month after joining the Trail Blazers, Olshey drafted Damian Lillard (sixth overall), the fourth unanimous NBA Rookie of the Year in league history, and Meyers Leonard (11th overall). He then named veteran coach Terry Stotts head coach of the Trail Blazers on August 7, 2012. Olshey also drafted and developed guard CJ McCollum (10th overall in 2013), winner of the 2015-16 NBA Most Improved Player award.

Last season, Olshey made a trade-deadline move to acquire center Jusuf Nurkic and a 2017 first-round draft pick from Denver in exchange for Mason Plumlee and cash considerations on February 13. That move ignited the Trail Blazers’ climb into the NBA Playoffs for the fourth consecutive season – even with the youngest roster in the NBA.

“Knowing Neil will continue to lead Basketball Operations well into the foreseeable future is a great thing for our franchise,” said Trail Blazers President and CEO Chris McGowan. “I am excited to continue our partnership in running this organization on and off the court with the goal of delivering a world-class experience for our fans.”

The Trail Blazers will tip-off the 2017-18 regular season beginning October 18 with road games at Phoenix, Indiana and Milwaukee, before returning to Portland for their home opener versus New Orleans on October 24.

Today, Scotiabank and Maple Leafs Sports and Entertainment (MLSE) announced an expanded sponsorship and philanthropic partnership which will see the home of the Toronto Maple Leafs and Toronto Raptors transformed into the Scotiabank Arena in July, 2018.

This 20-year strategic partnership also includes new philanthropic opportunities with the MLSE Foundation, and a digital collaboration between MLSE and the Scotiabank Digital Factory.

“We have always sought new and innovative partnerships with the goal of building strong and enduring communities,” said Brian Porter, Scotiabank’s President and CEO. “Today’s announcement is an extension of Scotiabank’s unwavering love of sports and our commitment to help young people reach their full potential. We believe that MLSE is an ideal partner for Scotiabank to reach our objectives.”

Scotiabank supports more than 8,000 Canadian kids’ community hockey teams. This partnership will enrich that support in the Greater Toronto Area, and will help to expand community hockey programs for youth across the country. “Scotiabank is already a proud supporter of the MLSE Foundation and its LaunchPad program. Today’s announcement builds on our commitment to Canada’s young people,” said Brian Porter.

“For the past 18 years, Air Canada Centre has not only been home to the Maple Leafs and Raptors, it has also hosted hundreds of the most popular concerts and events in the industry, helping contribute to Toronto’s well-deserved reputation as one of the top sports and entertainment destinations in the world,” said Larry Tanenbaum, Chairman of the Board for MLSE. “We are grateful to Scotiabank for their continued support and this expanded partnership as we look ahead to what we expect to be 20 of the most exciting years in Toronto sports and entertainment history.”

“MLSE is proud to operate one of the top venues in sports and entertainment, in a world-renowned city backed by some of the best fans and partners in the industry,” said Michael Friisdahl, President and CEO of MLSE. “This expanded partnership with Scotiabank will not only support our pursuit of championships and delivering a world-class experience for our fans, but it will have a lasting impact on our community.”

As part of the transfer of the arena naming rights in 2018, MLSE and Air Canada have also reached an agreement on a long-term partnership renewal that will see the company continue as the official airline partner of both the Maple Leafs and Raptors.

“As Canada’s flag carrier and North America’s Best Airline as ranked by the Skytrax World Airline Awards, we are proud to continue our partnership with MLSE as the Official Airline of the Toronto Maple Leafs and Toronto Raptors,” said Benjamin Smith, President, Passenger Airlines at Air Canada. “We congratulate MLSE and Scotiabank as they build on the legacy we helped establish in 1999 and look forward to celebrating with fans and customers during our final season as title sponsor of the Air Canada Centre. Air Canada supports professional and amateur sports throughout Canada and our global hub in Toronto connects that city to the world, driving both the economy and communities.”

“MLSE is extremely grateful to Air Canada for their support as a founding partner of the Raptors and Air Canada Centre and we look forward to our continued partnership,” said Tanenbaum.

“Air Canada has been an integral part of the success of this arena and our teams over the past 18 years, and with our renewal agreement, we look forward to continued success with our partnership in the years to come,” said Friisdahl.

Since opening in February, 1999, Air Canada Centre has hosted more than 50 million fans over 3,500 premiere events including the 2016 NBA All Star Weekend, the 2016 World Cup of Hockey and many of the world’s most popular performing artists including U2, Justin Bieber and Drake. As one of the leading sports and entertainment venues in the world, Air Canada Centre was named last year as Canadian Venue of the Year by Canadian Music Week as well as the third busiest concert venue in North America and seventh-ranked facility in the world for concert attendance by Pollstar. The venue capacity is 19,800 for basketball and full-house concerts and 18,800 for hockey.

“We are thrilled that Scotiabank’s name will appear on the side of this iconic building for the next two decades, and are looking forward to all of the historic moments to come,” said Scotiabank’s

Elton Brand is now a GM in the G League

Philadelphia 76ers President of Basketball Operations Bryan Colangelo announced yesterday that Elton Brand has been named General Manager of the Delaware 87ers, the 76ers’ NBA G League affiliate.

“We are thrilled that Elton has agreed to take on the GM position of the Sevens, a natural next step given both his personal and professional skillset,” Colangelo said. “The transition from a terrific playing career to team management was something that we have been talking about for some time and this opportunity is both timely and appropriate. I look forward to working side-by-side with Elton as we continue to grow and develop our overall basketball program.”

Brand, a 17-year NBA veteran, spent parts of five seasons with the Sixers and appeared in 263 games (222 starts) with the team from 2008-12 and in 2015-16, reaching the postseason twice. For his career, Brand posted averages of 16 points, nine rebounds, two assists and two blocks per game, while shooting 50 percent from the field and 74 percent from the free-throw line in 33 minutes per game. He played in 1,058 NBA contests (868) starts with Chicago, the Los Angeles Clippers, the Sixers, Dallas and Atlanta.

“I’m extremely excited to begin a new role as General Manager of the 87ers,” said Brand. “I want to thank Josh Harris, David Blitzer, Bryan Colangelo and staff for the opportunity to develop, cultivate and elevate talent in our program. I look forward to building upon the successes the Sevens have had both on the court and in the community in Delaware.”

A native of Peekskill, New York, the 6-foot-8 forward was originally selected by the Chicago Bulls with the first overall pick in the 1999 NBA Draft following two seasons at Duke University. He was named 2000 Co-Rookie of the Year after averaging 20 points, 10 rebounds and two blocks in his debut campaign. In 2005-06, Brand posted a career-high 25 points per game and was selected to one of his two All-Star Games. That season, he helped the Clippers reach the playoffs for the first time in eight years. Brand’s 1,828 career blocks place him 22nd all-time in NBA history.

On Oct. 20, 2016, following training camp with the 76ers, Brand announced his intent to retire from the NBA. Brand rejoined the team on Dec. 6 as a player development consultant, a role that he held until accepting the Sevens General Manager position.

In a related move, the Sevens promoted Matt Lilly to Director of Basketball Operations & Scouting. Lilly spent the past two seasons as Basketball Operations Assistant and Video Coordinator for the Sevens. The Towson University graduate enters his fifth season overall in the NBA G League, including two seasons with the Erie BayHawks from 2012-2014.

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