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Basketball news gathered from around the net.

Elfrid Payton Leaves Louisiana-Lafayette For NBA Draft

Elfrid Payton is leaving Louisiana-Lafayette for the 2014 NBA Draft after his junior season.

Payton could become a late first round pick.

Payton developed from a lightly recruited point guard out of Louisiana to one of the top floor leaders in the country.

Several NBA executives told ESPN.com that Payton is likely to be selected somewhere in the 25 to 40 range.

Via Jeff Goodman/ESPN

NBA Can Buy Back Bucks If No Arena Deal In Place By Nov. 2017

If a deal to build a new arena is not in place by November 2017, the NBA has the right to buy back the Milwaukee Bucks from incoming owners Wesley Edens and Mark Lasry.

Sources told ESPN.com that the sale agreement announced last week to transfer the Bucks from longtime owner Herb Kohl to Edens and Lasry for a purchase price of $550 million includes a provision that allows the league to buy back the team for $575 million.

This provision ensures that the NBA would control the fate of the franchise from that point as opposed to Edens and Lasry.

Edens and Lasry agreed last week to pay a league-record $550 million to Kohl for the Bucks and promised to contribute an additional $100 million toward a new arena. 

Via Brian Windhorst, Marc Stein/ESPN

Steve Kerr Anticipates Talking Knicks' Job With Jackson

Steve Kerr finally acknowledged that he will be in discussions to become the next head coach of the New York Knicks.

Mike Woodson was fired by the Knicks on Monday.

"I do anticipate talking with Phil Jackson at some point. When that time comes, it will come," Kerr said. "For now, there's really not a whole lot to talk about."

Kerr played for Jackson with the Chicago Bulls.

"It's going to be very interesting. My name is being thrown around. I do anticipate at least being a part of the conversation and we'll see where it all goes."

Jackson said he will immediately begin to conduct a coaching search to find a replacement.

Sources tell Howard Beck of Bleacher Report that Kerr would prefer to stay near the West Coast. Kerr lives in San Diego and has a daughter attending Cal-Berkeley.

Via Ian Begley/ESPN

DeAndre Liggins Named D-League Defensive Player Of The Year

Sioux Falls Skyforce guard DeAndre Liggins has been selected as the 2014 NBA Development League’s Defensive Player of the Year by a vote of the league’s 17 head coaches.

Liggins (6-6, 209, Kentucky) appeared in 42 regular season games for the Skyforce, anchoring the defensive efforts of a Sioux Falls team that held their opponents to league-lows of only 45 percent shooting from the field and 100.1 points per 100 possessions.  Sioux Falls’ opponents averaged 102.9 points, good for second-lowest in the NBA D-League.  As an individual, he averaged an NBA D-League best 2.6 steals, to go with 14.2 points and 4.8 assists.

All-Time NBA D-League Defensive Players of the Year

Stefhon Hannah (Santa Cruz Warriors, 2012-13)

Stefhon Hannah (Dakota Wizards, 2011-12)

Chris Johnson (Dakota Wizards, 2010-11)

Greg Stiemsma (Sioux Falls Skyforce, 2009-10)

Brent Petway (Idaho Stampede, 2008-09)

Stefane Lasme (Los Angeles D-Fenders, 2007-08)

Mouhamed Sene (Idaho Stampede, 2007-08)

Renaldo Major (Dakota Wizards, 2006-07)

Derrick Zimmerman (Austin Toros, 2005-06)

Derrick Zimmerman (Columbus Riverdragons, 2004-05)

Karim Shabazz (Charleston Lowgators, 2003-04)

Mikki Moore (Roanoke Dazzle, 2002-03)

Jeff Myers (Greenville Groove, 2001-02)

Via RealGM Staff Report

NBA Admits Referees Should Have Awarded Howard Two Free Throws On Late Boxout With Freeland

The NBA acknowledged the officials missed a late call in the Portland Trail Blazers' 122-120 overtime win over the Houston Rockets in Game 1 on Sunday.

"After video review by the league office, we have determined that the officials were incorrect in assessing a foul to the Rockets' Dwight Howard with 10.8 seconds remaining in overtime," Rod Thorn said in a statement. "The foul should have been called on the Blazers' Joel Freeland and Howard should have been awarded two free throws."

Via RealGM Staff Report

Report: Warriors To Buy New Site In San Francisco, Abandon Waterfront Plans

The Golden State Warriors and Salesforce.com have agreed on terms to sell the team a future arena site on a sprawling patch of Mission Bay land off Third Street, according to multiple sources.

The sale would doom the proposed waterfront arena on Piers 30 and 32.

The potential sale would connect the dots between a series of major real-estate transactions involving Salesforce and the Dogpatch-area land it owns. 

Via Joe Eskenazi/SF Weekly

Jazz Part With Ty Corbin

The Utah Jazz announced they have elected not to offer Tyrone Corbin a new contract.

“I would like to thank Ty and his staff for all of their hard work, dedication and professionalism over the last three-plus seasons,” Dennis Lindsey said in a statement. “This has not been an easy decision, but after a thorough review process, we as an organization feel that this is the best decision for our franchise moving forward.”

Corbin compiled a 112-146 (.434) record with the Jazz in four seasons, guiding the team to a winning record in two of his three full seasons and a playoff appearance in 2012.

Via RealGM Staff Report

Damion James Won't Play For Spurs In Playoffs

Damion James remains technically on the playoff roster of the San Antonio Spurs, but won't participate in the playoffs.

James will be kept by the Spurs for development over the summer.

Via Jeff McDonald/San Antonio Express-News

Source: Kerr Hasn't Spoken To TNT About Altering Schedule For Coaching Job

Steve Kerr declined to comment on the New York Knicks' head coaching situation before he worked Sunday's game between the Chicago Bulls and Washington Wizards for TNT.

"I hope you understand, but I'm not talking about anything," Kerr said.

A source close to Kerr emphatically denied a report that he has spoken with his bosses at Turner Sports about altering his schedule in the event that he accepts a head coaching job.

Kerr could also become a candidate for the Golden State Warriors if Mark Jackson is fired.

Via Frank Isola/New York Daily News

Joakim Noah Named Defensive Player Of The Year

Joakim Noah has been named the NBA's Defensive Player of the Year.

Noah's strong play on defense allowed the Bulls to remain a playoff team despite the season-ending injury to Derrick Rose and trade of Luol Deng.

Noah received 100 of 125 first place votes.

Roy Hibbert finished second, while DeAndre Jordan was third. Serge Ibaka, Andre Iguodala and LeBron James rounded out the top-6.

Via Aggrey Sam/Comcast

Knicks Fire Mike Woodson, Will Search For New Coach Immediately

The Knicks fired Mike Woodson and his coaching staff on Monday.

Rick Adelman Retires As Head Coach

Rick Adelman will remain with the Timberwolves in a consultant role.

Patrick Beverley To Undergo MRI On Reinjured Right Knee

Patrick Beverley missed time this season due to a torn right meniscus.

Iguodala: We're Trying To Save Our Coach

Andre Iguodala said after the Game 1 win that he heard an ESPN report that Mark Jackson "is going to be gone."

Bulls Excited To Own Two 'Invaluable' First Round Picks

The Bulls will draft 16th and 19th in June.

Harrisons Waiting For Feedback From NBA Before Making Decision

Andrew and Aaron Harrison are continuing to weigh their options about returning to Kentucky for their sophomore season or leaving for the NBA.

Tennessee Focuses Coaching Search On Michael White

Tennessee is focusing its coaching search on Michael White of Louisiana Tech.

Savon Goodman Transfers To Arizona State

Savon Goodman averaged 3.6 points and 2.4 rebounds per game as a freshman at UNLV in 12-13.

76ers' Harris: No Shortcuts To Become Elite Team For Long Period

The 76ers won just 19 games this season while stripping its roster in the process.

Kupchak Favored Keeping Gasol At Deadline

The Lakers decided not to trade away the expiring $19.3 million contract of Pau Gasol for such a small return.

Jim Buss Gives Himself Deadline To Turn Around Lakers' Basketball Ops

Jim Buss pledged to his siblings during a winter meeting that he would step down from his post in basketball operations of the Lakers if the team didn't become a contender again within the next few years.

New Bucks' Owners Hope To Follow Model Of Spurs, Thunder

Wesley Edens and Marc Lasry 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.

Bulls Were Increasingly Confident Of Carmelo Chances Even Before Cap News

The Bulls would have to use their amnesty clause on Carlos Boozer, as well as moving other veteran salary to make Carmelo Anthony a competitive offer.

Robert Covington Named D-League Rookie Of The Year

Robert Covington averaged 23.2 points, good for second-best in the NBA D-League, while shooting 44 percent from the field.

Joakim Noah Returns To Practice After Bereavement Leave

Joakim Noah returned to Bulls practice on Saturday.

Wade Won't Have Minutes Restriction Entering Playoffs

Erik Spoelstra said Dwyane Wade will not have a minutes restriction entering the NBA playoffs.

Phil Jackson Vowed Changes In Speech To Knicks

Phil Jackson and Jim Dolan addressed the Knicks' locker room after the team's season finale

NBA Salary Cap Projected To Increase By 7.7 Percent

The increase could make signing Carmelo Anthony far more viable for the Rockets and Bulls.

Jazz Deny Reported Firing Of Ty Corbin

The Jazz denied a New York Daily News report Friday that Ty Corbin has been fired as head coach.

Marcus Lee Returns To Kentucky For Sophomore Season

Marcus Lee was named to the Midwest Regional All-Tournament team in his freshman season.
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