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NBA Will Set New Security Guidelines, Cites Terrorism As First Concern

The NBA will set new security guidelines for its arenas, exerting more authority over a matter previously left to individual teams, commissioner David Stern said Tuesday.

Stern said the Nov. 19 Pacers-Pistons brawl that spilled into the stands and led to three Indiana players being suspended for 25 or more games, including the season-long penalty for Ron Artest, exposed current league security policies as inadequate.

"I would say that's a whole subject that we have historically left to teams, and it's clear that's not going to be good enough anymore, so we're going to take another look at it," Stern said in his first public comments on the brawl since announcing the suspensions.

Stern said the new guidelines will be issued in early January.

Stern was in Atlanta for Tuesday night's Hawks-Knicks game and to participate in a halftime ceremony honoring former Hawks owner Ted Turner.

He offered no specifics on the new security guidelines, but said concerns raised by the brawl had been a secondary issue in recent years.

"Actually the area of most concern for us was protecting our building from terrorist threats," he said.

Stern also said he did not think the brawl, suspensions or appeal would affect the tone of the upcoming NBA labor negotiations.

"I doubt it. I don't think so," he said. ``I think that most players will realize that this action was taken to protect the golden goose and to protect their images, rather than to sully them. I would suggest that dealing harshly with players who breach fundamental tenants of player-fan interaction is designed to protect our players as well as our fans."

Stern said he expects talks with the union to rise above the negative publicity generated by the brawl.

"We've been at this for too many years," he said. "We can fight and be intelligent. We can fight and fraternize at the same time.

"I think it's important for our fans and the entire NBA family to understand that we have 450 players and only four were involved (to) the extent ... there were long-term suspensions," Stern said. "These suspensions are as much to set a fine line between behavior that almost all of the 450 would not engage in and the offensive behavior those four engaged in."

Via Yahoo!

Mark Cuban Proposes Starting Gambling Hedge Fund

Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban says he plans to start a hedge fund, run by professional gamblers, to make bets on sporting events.

In a 1,278-word weblog posted over the weekend, Cuban said a gambling hedge fund would be no worse than the stock market, which he compared to a Ponzi scheme, with some people trading on inside information and others buying stocks on emotion.

Cuban, who recently was the host of ABC's The Benefactor, made his fortune by selling his Internet company at the height of the dot-com boom, accused public companies of manipulating profit numbers and said the Securities and Exchange Commission fails to make companies follow the rules.

NBA spokesman Tim Frank said the league needed more information about Cuban's plans.

"It's just a blog entry," Frank said. "We just became aware of it this morning, and we haven't had a chance to review it."

In his weekend posting, Cuban said he has "done very well" in stocks over the past 15 years but that for many investors, putting money in stocks is nothing more than gambling.

Cuban added that from "minimal reading and conversations" about sports betting, there are smart gamblers who win repeatedly, which he attributed to the vast information available about sports teams.

In casinos, he added, "Unlike the stock market, you know the rules exactly. You know without question, the house is going to play by the rules. The gaming commission appears to actually enforce rules of play, unlike the SEC."

Via Sportsline

Garnett and James Lead RealGM's Player Rankings

There was no change in the top 6 places of RealGM.com's Player Rankings.

Kevin Garnett is at the top of the board yet again, with his per game averages of 23.6 points, 14.9 rebounds 6.2 assists and 1.9 blocks.

Lebron James maintained a firm hold on the second spot.

Dwayne Wade and Dirk Nowitzki are creeping up on Tim Duncan and could overtake his standing at anytime.

Rounding out the elite 8 are Suns teammates Shawn Marion and Amare Stoudemire, and Lakers guard Kobe Bryant.

The Seattle SuperSonics, with the best record in the NBA, don't have a single player in the top 23, as Ray Allen is ranked 24th.

Via RealGM.com

Magic GM Reveals Sonics Trade Talk

According to Brian Schmitz of the Orlando Sentinel Orlando GM John Weisbrod has revealed the Magic talked with the Seattle SuperSonics about pricey guard Ray Allen before the season.

Weisbrod, however, was interested in acquiring forward Nick Collison.

Via Orlando Sentinel

No Deal In Place Yet For Mike Fratello With Memphis

Mike Fratello had "a nice conversation" with the Memphis Grizzlies about the team's vacant coaching position, but said no deal was in place for him to take over the club on Monday.

Fratello addressed the issue during the telecast of the Boston Celtics-Miami Heat game, which he was working as a color commentator for the Sunshine Network. He met with Grizzlies president of basketball operation Jerry West and general manager Dick Versace for about four hours Saturday, and said another meeting was expected.

"We talked about the future of the franchise, talked about what they were looking for, ran down all the players on the team and said we'd be back and talk once again," Fratello said. "That's about as far as it's gone."

Via Sportsline

Magloire Fined $7,500 For Throwing Basketball At Mike Dunleavy, Jr.

Hornets center Jamaal Magloire was fined $7,500 by the NBA on Tuesday for throwing a basketball at Golden State's Mike Dunleavy in a game last week.

The ball hit Dunleavy in the chest in the second quarter of the Warriors' 115-109 triple overtime victory on Nov. 23 in Oakland.

Via FoxSports.com

Portland Still Working On An Abdur-Rahim Deal

According to Kerry Eggers of the Portland Tribune, Portland  has been discussing trades with a number of different clubs.

Shareef Abdur-Rahim will the center of any deal. One of the offers has been to Toronto for Vince Carter,"but so far, they have rejected our proposals," Portland GM John Nash says. "They are not as interested as we are at this point.?

Another potential deal, Abdur-Rahim to New Jersey for Jason Kidd, is on hold until Kidd returns to the Nets? lineup. The Nets like Abdur-Rahim and would be interested in keeping him instead of letting him go after his contract expires at the end of the season, says Chief Executive Officer Rod Thorn.

The Blazers, like other potential suitors, want to see how Kidd responds to offseason knee surgery before making a deal. The Nets will consider a trade, though "I think we will probably keep (Kidd)," Thorn says. But if they continue to lose, they would have more reason to trade the veteran point guard.

If the Blazers would be willing to part with rookie point guard Sebastian Telfair, they could almost surely make the deal. But, given Portland?s stance on Stoudamire, whose contract ends after this season, "wait and see," Nash says.

Via The Portland Tribune

Jason Kidd Set To Return By December 14th

Jason Kidd is expected to return to the Nets lineup sometime between December 10-14.  

"We should not expect Jason to save us," said Richard Jefferson, who averaged 22.8 points, 7.8 rebounds and shot .465 (33-of-71) on the Nets' 0-4 western trip that ran their losing streak to nine games and left them at 2-11, tying the worst 13-game start in franchise history.

"He's coming back from knee surgery and you don't want to put too much pressure on one guy," Jefferson continued. "We need to save ourselves. Jason should come in and contribute until he gets his legs underneath him.

Jefferson and his mate shouldn't plan on playing with one of the league's hottest commodities for very long, as Kidd's name has had constant placement on NBA rumor mill's since the summer.

Fred Kerber of the New York Post writes, 'If Kidd appears fine after his left-knee surgery, operators will be standing by waiting to take calls bidding for his services.'

Via NY Post

Nets Looking For Aaron Williams Suitors

Nets coach, Lawrence Frank has used rookie Nenad Krstic with greater frequency of late, leading to speculation that Aaron Williams is on the trading block.

A league source said the Nets are trying to trade Williams, who played two minutes in the past two games, including none at Portland.

Via Bergen Record

Magloire To Miss 3 Months With Dislocated Right Ring Finger

New Orleans Hornets center Jamaal Magloire will be out up to three months with a dislocated right ring finger.

Magloire was injured in the fourth quarter of the Hornets' 95-86 loss at Phoenix on Friday and flew back to New Orleans for treatment. He will not need surgery.

The team said Monday that Magloire's finger would be in a splint for eight weeks and then he will rehab for four weeks.

Magloire, an Eastern Conference All-Star, has averaged 14 points and nine rebounds per game in 11 games this season.

Via Sportsline

Doc Rivers and the Celtics Victorious in Orlando Return

Pacers Will Not Subject Players to Police Interviews

Pacers officials have told Auburn Hills P.D. that they would "assist with the investigation as much as possible" but would not provide any Pacers for interview

Carmelo out with Ankle Sprain

Slay Activated and Sampson Placed on Injured List

Bucks Waive Anthony Goldwire

Kirilenko May Miss Up To A Month With Sprained MCL

Delonte West Out Indefinitely With A Broken Right Hand

Avery Johnson To Make His Head Coaching Debut Tuesday

Don Nelson is letting his top assistant run the team during Tuesday's night contest versus San Antonio. Nelson is planning on letting Johnson be head coach for a handful of games this season.

Denver Interested In Trading For Piatkowski

Buss on Malone: "I Am Confident That If He Plays, He'll Be A Laker"

Nash Safe, Cheeks In Question In Portland

Questions Raised About Van Gundy 's Houston Fit

James and Marion Named NBA Players of the Week

Golden State Displeasure

The Warriors have begun the season with a 3-10 record and are hearing the boo birds during home games

Mourning: "Wasn't My Intention To Carry A Ball Club"

Sonics Win Battle of the #1's

Larry Hughes Grabs Triple Double in Win Versus Toronto

Clipper Clinch A Winning November Record

Dr. Jerry Buss Offered Shaq 2 Years For $45 Million

Lakers owner Dr. Jerry Buss wants to make up with Shaq

Bill Harris of Canoe Confirms Carter Trade Talk

It appears increasingly likely that Vince Carter will be traded
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