Dec 31, 2002 11:53 PM EST
As Scottie Pippen visit's Chicago for what many consider to be the final time as an NBA player, with Pippen previously stating that this will be his last hurrah, Scottie is hinting that he may just have more fuel left int he tank after all.
Ex-Bulls teammates Michael Jordan and Horace Grant both appear to be in their final seasons in the league - though with Jordan you can never be sure - Pippen believes that if he can continue to contribute he will continue to play. Play where, however, is the question.
Pippen has not ruled out playing again in Portland, but their cap situation might prevent the six-time champion from returning. But what about a reunion with Phil Jackson in Los Angeles?
"If I can contribute, yeah," Pippen said. "If Phil wanted me and I could contribute, not be a 12th or 13th man."
"I don't regret going to Portland," Pippen said. "The only regret I have is going to Houston. I should have sat out the '99 season and then put myself on the market. I tried to push a deal [to the Lakers from Houston]. That's what pushed me out of Houston."
And of course there cannot be a Pippen-Chicago story with yet another dig at Jerry Krause and Bulls owner Jerry Reinsdorf, whom Pippen still feels were to blame for the dynasty break up.
"There's nothing for me to regret about that," said Pippen, who said he would have rejected a one-year $15M contract to keep the team together and left should Jordan have not retired. I didn't do anything wrong. It was not the players' fault. The regret should be for Krause and Jerry Reinsdorf. What they did makes what we did much greater. Because it's going to take that much longer for them to put any type of team together, a team that can just compete for the playoffs. The league is getting better, but they keep going back and trying to play catch-up."
Dec 31, 2002 7:38 PM EST
The Associated Press reports: The Minnesota Timberwolves suspended forward Loren Woods indefinitely on Monday night for conduct detrimental to the team.
"Loren said a couple of things and did a couple of things. He'll have to sit back and think about it, hopefully get his head right, come back and play,'' Kevin McHale, the Timberwolves' vice president of basketball operations, said.
When told about the suspension, Woods left the coaches' office cursing, told teammate Kevin Garnett he was suspended and left without further comment. Garnett then had a 20-minute, closed-door meeting with the coaches, but he left the locker room without commenting on Woods.
At the beginning of the season, Woods started 11 of 12 games and averaged close to 22 minutes per game but in Minnesota's last 18 games, Woods has played just 31 minutes.
Dec 31, 2002 3:00 PM EST
The Associated Press reports: New York Knicks forward Clarence Weatherspoon and San Antonio Spurs forward-center Kevin Willis were suspended for one game without pay by the NBA on Tuesday for fighting.
Weatherspoon also was fined $20,000 and will miss New York's game against Toronto on Wednesday. Willis will sit out the San Antonio's game Tuesday night at Washington.
Dec 31, 2002 12:58 PM EST
On a Jerry Sloan-coached team, there are certain rules that players are expected to obey.
One is: When attempting to block a shot, don't leave your feet. The problem is that when a player leaves his feet, he eventually has to come down, and it's not uncommon for players to commit fouls in the process of landing.
But according to one reliable source who has been privy to team meetings, when Sloan recites that rule he is always quick to add: "Except you, Andrei."
"Andrei," of course, is Andrei Kirilenko, the second-year forward who has blocked 11 shots in the Jazz's last two games, including five in Monday night's 107-85 victory over the Toronto Raptors at the Delta Center.
He also scored 20 points on six of 10 shots, pulled down four rebounds and made three steals.
Dec 31, 2002 12:57 PM EST
The temptation was to look at the facts, and chuckle.
Toronto came to Utah 8-22, loser of six straight and 10 of its previous 11 games. The injury-depleted Raptors arrived quite short-handed, missing star Vince Carter and fellow starter Antonio Davis, among others. And they were playing their fourth game in five nights, all out West.
Should be a real laugher, huh?
Well, Utah's 107-85 victory over Toronto on Monday night was no joke.
Dec 31, 2002 11:46 AM EST
Hoops history may show that Karl Malone and John Stockton were unable to lead the Utah Jazz to an NBA championship.
Having played with them and having learned from them, Greg Foster has a different perspective on the future Hall of Fame tandem of Malone and Stockton.
"I don't think people know the true scope of what John and Karl have done in this league," Foster said as he returned to Utah last night with the Raptors. "These are two guys who show up for practice each day and work hard each day, two guys who play hard every single game."
Dec 31, 2002 11:45 AM EST
The Raptors find themselves in seventh hell.
Their game has turned into a joke, only there's nothing funny about a losing streak that now has stretched to a season-high seven games.
Toronto jumped out to an impressive 17-9 lead last night against the host Utah Jazz, led 26-24 after the opening period and then began to self-destruct.
Dec 31, 2002 11:44 AM EST
Vince Carter was a no-show.
Then again, quite a few of the Toronto Raptors fell into that category Monday night at the Delta Center.
But unlike Lindsey Hunter, who went 1-for-4 with four turnovers and a technical foul in 20 minutes of action, or Jerome Williams, who played 35 minutes yet managed just three points and two rebounds, Carter wasn't even in the building to witness the Raptors' 107-85 loss to the Utah Jazz.
Dec 31, 2002 11:43 AM EST
Andrei Kirilenko kept the fans in the stands and the Toronto Raptors on their heels Monday night at the Delta Center.
In a game that essentially was decided before halftime, Kirilenko punished the Raptors at the offensive end of the court with 20 points off the bench, and used an energetic effort defensively to keep a sellout crowd from heading for the exits early with five blocked shots and three steals in a 107-85 Utah Jazz victory.
"He just plays basketball," Jazz coach Jerry Sloan said of Kirilenko. "He's a lot like John (Stockton). Once he scores, he"s right back into the game again. He never plays backwards."
Dec 31, 2002 11:41 AM EST
Andrei Kirilenko is having another good season in the NBA, but he's not even having the best year in his own family.
An album of pop songs released this fall by Kirilenko's wife, Masha Lopatova, is selling well in Russia, and the video for its first single -- "Saharniy," or roughly in English "Sugary" -- recently soared to No. 1 on Russian MTV.
The song is autobiographical, tracing Masha's breakup with her former boyfriend, another Russian pop star -- think "Britney" and "Justin," except this ex actually appears in the video, too -- through her loneliness until she meets Andrei, the famous basketball star.
Dec 31, 2002 | The Denver Post
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