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Basketball news gathered from around the net.

Jason Collins Announces Retirement From NBA

Jason Collins has announced his retirement from the NBA in a piece in Sports Illustrated.

"It has been 18 exhilarating months since I came out in Sports Illustrated as the first openly gay man in one of the four major professional team sports," wrote Collins. "And it has been nine months since I signed with the Nets and became the first openly gay male athlete to appear in a game in one of those leagues. It feels wonderful to have been part of these milestones for sports and for gay rights, and to have been embraced by the public, the coaches, the players, the league and history.

"On Wednesday at the Barclays Center, I plan to announce my retirement as an NBA player. The day will be especially meaningful for me because the Nets will be playing the Bucks, who are coached by Jason Kidd, my former teammate and my coach in Brooklyn. It was Jason who cheered my decision to come out by posting on Twitter: “Jason’s sexuality doesn’t change the fact that he is a great friend and was a great teammate.”

"Considering all the speculation about problems I might face within the locker room, Jason’s support was significant. It had been argued that no team would want to take on a player who was likely to attract a media circus from the outset and whose sexuality would be a distraction. I’m happy to have helped put those canards to rest. The much-ballyhooed media blitz to cover me unscrambled so quickly that a flack jokingly nicknamed me Mr. Irrelevant."

Via Sports Illustrated

Self: Cliff Alexander Not Tall Enough To Score Over Kentucky's Length

Cliff Alexander's lack of length was problematic in Kansas' 72-40 loss to Kentucky on Tuesday.

Alexander had just eight points and eight rebounds as he struggled against the length of Willie Cauley-Stein, Dakari Johnson, Karl-Anthony Towns and Trey Lyles.

According to Bill Self, Alexander must learn to put himself in better position to score before he receives the ball.

“He’s not tall enough, and it was very evident tonight, to score over that length,” Self said.

Via Steve Greenberg/Chicago Sun-Times

Celtics Telling Teams Rajon Rondo Won't Be Traded

Rival executives have told Bleacher Report that Danny Ainge has been firm that the Boston Celtics will not trade Rajon Rondo ahead of the trade deadline.

"They're definitely bravely saying they won't trade him at this point," said one general manager, who nevertheless added, "I definitely think it's the right thing to trade him. I think Danny knows it."

Rondo's representatives are said to be pursuing a max contract, which would be for five years and an estimated $106 million if he stays with Boston, while his deal elsewhere would be four years and about $79 million.

"My body feels a lot better, my legs are a lot stronger," Rondo said, comparing his play now to last season, when he was just making his way back. "I can get into the paint a lot easier now, this year. Last year, I was pretty slow. So this year I'm a step faster."

"This is going to be his best year of his career, I think," Ainge said, though not because Rondo is on any sort of salary drive. "Knowing Rondo, he just wants to show that he's one of the elite point guards in the NBA again. But yeah, he is a foundational piece that we already have that's right there. But there is uncertainty for this upcoming offseason."

Via Howard Beck/Bleacher Report

Dwight Howard Under Investigation For Hitting Six-Year-Old Son With Belt

Dwight Howard is under investigation by authorities in Georgia in regards to allegedly hitting his six-year-old son with a belt, according to multiple reports.

Howard admitted, according to TMZ, to hitting his son with the buckle of his belt, leaving bruises and abrasions on his legs.

Howard has not been charged or arrested.

The NFL suspended Adrian Peterson for the rest of the season this week after he pled a child abuse case.

Via Ethan Rothstein/The Dream Shake

John Lucas To Sign In China

John Lucas III will sign a deal in the Chinese Basketball Association.

Lucas has reportedly pulled out of a workout with the Los Angeles Lakers.

Lucas was waived by the Washington Wizards before the season.

Via Marc Stein/ESPN

Lance Stephenson Expects To Get Booed From Pacers Crowd In Return

Lance Stephenson has already visualized the scene when his name is introduced in front of the Indiana Pacers' home crowd on Wednesday.

Stephenson expects to receive boos from the crowd after leaving the Pacers as an unrestricted free agent to sign a three-year contract with the Charlotte Hornets.

"Honestly," Stephenson said. "I think I'm going to get booed."

Stephenson's father, Lance Stephenson Sr., maintains that leaving the Pacers was not the plan heading into free agency in the offseason.

"It was definitely a tough decision to leave but it almost was like we had no choice, to me. The next day, they signed CJ Miles so it was over from that point on," Stephenson's father said. "It was tough. It wasn't like, 'Eff, the Pacers!' It was tough to leave. I didn't think it would happen. Before free agency, if you asked me where Lance was going to be, I would've said, 'He's going to be a Pacer for life.' That was one of our goals. I'm a firm believer in sticking with the team you got drafted by."

Via Candace Buckner/Indianapolis Star

LeBron Believes Minutes For Cavs' Big 3 Have To Come Down

LeBron James is averaging the third-most minutes per game in the NBA at 39.1. Fourth and fifth on that list are Kyrie Irving (38.4 mpg) and Kevin Love (37.0 mpg).

"That has to come down," James said Tuesday, referring to the playing time for the Cleveland Cavaliers' Big 3.

"For me, I don't want to do that all year," James added. "Obviously right now it's difficult because we're trying to find a groove and we're trying to find a rhythm and we're trying to find something that you can't really, you don't want to shortcut it but at the same time you gotta be smart about it."

James played 41 minutes in the Cavaliers' 106-97 loss to the Denver Nuggets on Monday.

Via Joe Vardon/Cleveland Plain Dealer

C.J. McCollum Sidelined Four Weeks With Finger Fracture

C.J. McCollum sustained a fracture to his right index finger in Portland’s 102-93 victory over the New Orleans Pelicans on Monday, the Trail Blazers announced on tuesday.

The injury occurred at the 7:50 mark of the fourth quarter on Monday.

McCollum will be re-evaluated in four weeks.

Via RealGM Staff Report

Nick Johnson Assigned By Rockets To Rio Grande Valley

Nick Johnson has been assigned to the Houston Rockets' single-affiliation NBA D-League partner, Rio Grande Valley. 

Johnson has appeared in three games with the Rockets so far this season, totaling two points and a rebound in 11 minutes of playing time.

Via RealGM Staff Report

Andrei Kirilenko Out Of Nets' Rotation

Andrei Kirilenko has fallen out of the Brooklyn Nets' rotation and was a healthy inactive for their game against the Miami Heat on Monday, saying he has "no idea" when he could receive playing time again.

“It’s tough, but there’s nothing I can do,” Kirilenko said. “I’m not the one making decisions, and it is what it is.”

Kirilenko has scored just three points in the 35 minutes he’s played across seven games. Kirilenko said Lionel Hollins has been open with him about his decision to leave him out of the rotation.

“I really appreciate it,” Kirilenko said, “but it doesn’t make things easier.”

Via Tim Bontemps/New York Post

Draymond Green Expected To Get At Least $8M Per Season

Draymond Green is making just $915,000 this season as a former second round pick.

Duncan Respects LeBron's Return To Cleveland, Didn't Think It Was A Possibility

The Spurs will play the Cavaliers on Wednesday for the first time since LeBron James returned to the franchise.

LeBron's Relationship With Blatt Remains Work In Progress

LeBron James and David Blatt continue to be a work in progress understanding each other.

James Johnson Out Indefinitely With Severe Right Ankle Sprain

James Johnson has averaged 7.6 points, 3.8 rebounds in 19.4 minutes per game this season.

Cleanthony Early To Undergo Knee Surgery

Cleanthony Early will be reevaluated in one month to determine the timetable for his return.

Bosh Didn't Want 'Pressure' Of Joining Another Big 3 With Rockets

Chris Bosh had just spent the past four seasons perceived as the third best player in a Big 3 behind LeBron James and Dwyane Wade.

Pacers Get Hardship Relief Extension On A.J. Price

A.J. Price will remain on the Pacers for another 10 days after the club was granted a second injury hardship relief exception.

Damian Lillard, LeBron Named NBA Players Of The Week

Damian Lillard and LeBron James have been named the NBA's Players of the Week for games played between Nov. 10 and Nov. 16.

Nuggets View Every Player On Roster As Trade Asset

The Nuggets are open to moving contracts and do not view anyone as an untouchable part.

Ryan Kelly Out At Least Six Weeks With Torn Hamstring

Ryan Kelly suffered the injury in Sunday's loss.

RealGM Radio: Dan Hanner On The Start Of The College Basketball Season

Daniel Leroux and Dan Hanner discuss Kentucky's unusual platoon system, Duke's status as a title contender, potential breakout players and much more.

Kobe: You're Crazy If You Think I Want To Shoot This Much At 36

Kobe Bryant scored 44 points on 34 shots from the field in the Lakers' loss on Sunday to the Golden State Warriors.

Joe Johnson Had Issue In Free Agency With Knicks' Facility Being Outside City

Joe Johnson seriously considered signing with the Knicks in 2010.

George Karl Remains Interested In Coaching, Monitoring Nuggets' Situation

George Karl was the NBA Coach of the Year in 12-13, but was fired before entering the final season of his contract.

Report: Klay Thompson Would Have Entered 2010 Draft With Guarantee From Lakers

The Lakers had already traded their first round pick in the 2010 NBA Draft, though they did own the 38th pick from the Grizzlies.

James Harden: Reggie Jackson Has To Get Money He's Earned

Reggie Jackson has made it clear that he is hoping to receive a more prominent, starting role.

Meyers Leonard Shifts Philosophy From 'Brute' Center To Stretch Forward

Meyers Leonard has shown development in his shooting and has a more defined role as a shooting big man who can stretch the defense.

Timberwolves Discussing Corey Brewer Trade With Cavs, Rockets

The Cavaliers and Rockets view Corey Brewer as a notable boost for their wing depth.

Rudy Gay Agrees To Three-Year, $40M Extension With Kings

Rudy Gay's extension with the Kings includes a player option for the the 2017-18 season.

Spurs Expected To Pursue Marc Gasol As Possible Tim Duncan Replacement

Marc Gasol will be the Knicks' main free agent target next offseason.
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