Apr 20, 2014 11:17 AM EDT
Jim Buss pledged to his siblings during a winter meeting that he would step down from his post in basketball operations of the Los Angeles Lakers if the team didn't become a contender again within the next few years.
"I was laying myself on the line by saying, if this doesn't work in three to four years, if we're not back on the top — and the definition of top means contending for the Western Conference, contending for a championship — then I will step down because that means I have failed," Jim Buss told The Times about the meeting. "I don't know if you can fire yourself if you own the team … but what I would say is I'd walk away and you guys figure out who's going to run basketball operations because I obviously couldn't do the job.
"There's no question in my mind we will accomplish success. I'm not worried about putting myself on the line."
Apr 20, 2014 4:41 AM EDT
Wesley Edens and Marc Lasry, prospective owners of the Milwaukee Bucks, acknowledged that they will be inheriting a franchise with the worst record in the NBA, a small market and the need for a new arena.
"First of all, I love underdogs, and I think Marc loves underdogs. The notion of buying into a team at this time in some respects is perfect. There is no doubt there is a tremendous fan base in Milwaukee and in the Wisconsin area for sports. All you have to do is look at the attendance figures for the Brewers. Go to a Packers game. There is no doubt there is a huge fan interest for it. We just have to create a product that everybody is excited about...In the NBA you can become competitive in a very short time if you get the right people in charge and you get the right players on the court playing the right way. I think it's a great opportunity."
"I agree with Wes," said Lasry. "Part of this for us, you can only go up, right? If you look at this, if we do the right things. If we pick the right players. If everything works the way hopefully it will and we can follow the model of San Antonio or the (Oklahoma City) Thunder. I think, look, all everybody wants is the same thing we do. Everybody just wants a winner.
"If you're winning, people show up. If you're losing, people get discouraged."
Apr 19, 2014 10:33 PM EDT
The Chicago Bulls were already feeling increasingly optimistic of their chances of acquiring Carmelo Anthony this offseason, according to sources, and the projected increase in salary cap for 14-15 improves their odds.
The Bulls would have to use their amnesty clause on Carlos Boozer, as well as moving other veteran salary to make Anthony a competitive offer.
The Houston Rockets are also confident that they can create space for Anthony.
Apr 19, 2014 2:09 PM EDT
Joakim Noah returned to Chicago Bulls practice on Saturday and will play in Sunday's Game 1 against the Washington Wizards.
Noah missed practice on Friday due to a bereavement leave to tend to the passing of childhood mentor Tyrone Green.
"I will do my best to respect his life and his family in this time of grief and ask that everyone please do the same. I will miss him very much," Noah said in a statement.
Apr 19, 2014 11:59 AM EDT
Erik Spoelstra said Saturday that Dwyane Wade will not have a minutes restriction entering the NBA playoffs.
The Heat open their first round series against the Charlotte Bobcats on Sunday.
"I'm going to read his body language," Spoelstra said of Wade.
Apr 19, 2014 11:54 AM EDT
Phil Jackson and Jim Dolan addressed the New York Knicks' locker room after the team's season finale, and Jackson made it clear that there will be changes in the offseason.
“Phil was honest; he said it was a disappointing season,” one Knicks player said. “He told us that there will be changes in the locker room and that not all of us will be back."
Jackson also told the Knicks they should be grateful for the job Mike Woodson has done.
Jackson is expected to try to re-sign Carmelo Anthony, but the statuses of Tyson Chandler, Iman Shumpert, Amar'e Stoudemire and others is unclear.
Apr 18, 2014 9:19 PM EDT
The NBA 2014-15 salary cap is now projected to be $63.2 million and the tax level is projected to be $77.0 million. The numbers for 2015-16 are now projected to be $66.5 million and $81.0 million, respectively.
The official numbers won't come out until July when the NBA conducts its audit.
The salary cap and luxury tax values for the current season are $58.679 million and $71.748 million, respectively, which means the new cap projection for next season represents a 7.7% increase over this season.
The original revenue forecast for 2014-15 was $4.66 billion, so with an actual revenue of $4.75 billion, the players would get 60.5% of the difference, or $54.45 million, on top of their 50% guarantee ($2,33 billion), for a total of about $2.384 billion.
The increase could make signing Carmelo Anthony far more viable for the Houston Rockets and Chicago Bulls.
Apr 18, 2014 8:34 PM EDT
The Utah Jazz denied a New York Daily News report Friday that Ty Corbin has been fired as head coach.
"Not accurate," Jazz president Randy Rigby said.
Corbin's agent, Steve Kauffman, also said he has not heard of any decision as of yet.
The Jazz went 25-57 this season.
Apr 18, 2014 8:23 PM EDT
Marcus Lee announced Friday that he will return to the University of Kentucky for his sophomore season.
"I've really enjoyed my college experience and I'm looking forward to continuing to develop as an all-around player," Lee said. "Playing in the Final Four was such an amazing feeling, but I want to come back and help win that final game this year."
Lee was named to the Midwest Regional All-Tournament team in his freshman season.
Apr 18, 2014 7:26 PM EDT
Nick Calathes will be suspended 20 games for a violation of the NBA's Anti-Drug policy.
The suspension will begin immediately.
A source says Calathes tested positive for Tamoxifen, which was part of an over-the-counter athletic supplement he had used.
The NBA's lab results showed no traces of testosterone or PED in the supplement.
"There was no intent here," said a league source.
David Joerger and the Memphis Grizzlies will be without Calathes in the playoffs.
The Jazz won an important tiebreaker over the Celtics.
The Lakers may look to accelerate their rebuilding efforts around Kobe Bryant and their cap space.
Daniel Leroux previews the NBA Playoffs with Beckley Mason, Nate Duncan, Shams Charania and Arturo Galletti.
The Lakers have planned to pick up the non-guaranteed season on Kendall Marshall's contract for 2014-15.
Brian Shaw expects Kenneth Faried to remain with the Nuggets next season.
New Orleans never signed Pierre Jackson to a rookie scare contract.
George Kaiser bought an ownership stake of the Thunder and has become the newest co-owner.
TNT sideline reporter Craig Sager has been diagnosed with leukemia.
Andrew Bynum has played two games since signing with the Pacers.
Nikola Vucevic and Tobias Harris will be eligible for extensions this summer.
Pau Gasol would have to accept the Knicks' taxpayer's midlevel exception of approximately $3.2 million.
Thaddeus Young admitted Thursday that he will look at all his options.
Joel Anthony will earn $3.8 million and become an unrestricted free agent in 2015.
Derrick Rose tore his meniscus early in the season and was subsequently ruled out for the remainder of the season.
Dante Exum participated in the Adidas Nations program in 2011 and 2012.
Scott Perry is assistant general manager of the Magic, but was formerly with the Pistons.
Tom Izzo, Fred Hoiberg and Stan Van Gundy are on the Timberwolves' coaching search list.
Steve Clifford guided the Charlotte Bobcats to a 7-1 record in April.
James Young averaged 14.3 points, 4.3 rebounds and 1.7 assists per game in his lone season with the Wildcats.
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Rodney Hood played one season at Mississippi State before transferring to Duke.
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