Apr 30, 2011 11:33 PM EDT
The Rockets have requested permission to speak to Lakers assistant coach Brian Shaw about their head coaching vacancy, according to an ESPN.com report.
Team rules restrict Lakers coaches from interviewing for another job while a playoff series is being played so Shaw will have to interview with the Rockets either Saturday or Sunday, or after the Lakers' second-round series with the Mavericks is concluded.
Apr 30, 2011 9:21 PM EDT
George Mason on Saturday hired former Georgia Tech coach Paul Hewitt to replace Jim Larranaga, who left this month for the University of Miami, according to Yahoo! Sports.
“Both are very good coaches,” George Mason AD Tom O’Connor said. “We were glad to have Jim, and we’re proud to have Paul.”
Apr 30, 2011 4:45 PM EDT
On Thursday, Deron Williams toured the construction site of the Nets’ future home with Billy King, the team’s general manager. Williams’s interest in the Barclays Center site is significant. He can become a free agent after next season; the arena is scheduled to open for the 2012-13 season.
“He is certainly enjoying his time with the organization,” Bob McClaren, Williams’s agent, said in a telephone interview. “They’ve been tremendous to him and they have a great plan for the future, and Deron feels like the best is yet to come for the franchise. ...
“He relishes the opportunity to help market the team to the fans and to, hopefully, free agents,” McClaren said of Williams.
“There is always great hope and opportunity for success when you’ve got a guy that can distribute the ball and make other players better. That’s what Deron Williams does so well.
“That will make the Nets organization very attractive to free agents, and that style of play will be attractive to the fans. The possibility is there to do something really special.”
Apr 30, 2011 4:35 PM EDT
In a two-hour chat with Andris Biedrins and his agent, Bill Duffy, Warriors general manager Larry Riley outlined a complete physical and mental training program for Biedrins to follow this summer.
"It's time to take actions that will get him moving in the right direction," Riley said. "Basically, we're going to rebuild his confidence."
Already a hyper sensitive guy, Biedrins has had plenty of reasons to lose confidence.
Biedrins averaged 190 free-throw attempts a season from 2006-09, but, after shooting a historically low 16 percent from the foul line in 2009-10, Biedrins has shied away from the ball - getting to the line just 56 times in the past two seasons combined.
"Our plan doesn't deal with just the physical aspects. It encompasses the complete rebuilding of his confidence," Riley said. "He's embarrassed, and I put the onus on him. He has to dig in on this, and we're going to support him in every way that we can."
Apr 30, 2011 4:32 PM EDT
A consultant familiar with the Kings' finances said the team is losing about $8 million a year. The losses would be higher, except that the Kings operate with the lowest player payroll in the league – around $44 million in the just-concluded regular season.
Such a business model isn't sustainable over the long haul. With a chronically low player payroll, the organization "just withers on the vine," said this consultant.
A new arena in Sacramento would significantly improve the Kings' finances; the Maloofs told an NBA consultant in 2009 that a new building would be worth more than $13 million a year in additional revenue from luxury suites and other amenities.
Apr 30, 2011 2:27 PM EDT
Memphis center Marc Gasol had the height, weight and strength advantage over the 35-year-old Tim Duncan.
For the series, Gasol averaged 14.2 points and 11.8 rebounds to Duncan’s 12.6 and 10.5.
“We kept thinking they’d fold under the pressure, but they didn’t,” Duncan said. “They got the exact shots they needed, and they made them. We had so many close games, some that could have fallen to us, but they made the plays.”
In the end, Spurs coach Gregg Popovich said this wasn’t as big as upset as the average basketball fan might be led to believe.
“Most people would think that, but they don’t understand the West,” Popovich said. “It doesn’t matter what your seeding is in the West. We all know that everyone is basically as good as everyone else.”
Apr 30, 2011 2:24 PM EDT
Brandon Roy says he intends to work this summer to come back as a starter for the Trail Blazers next season.
"I'm going to want to push to be a starter and help this team win. The goal doesn't change," Roy said Friday as the Blazers left for the offseason. "I think I definitely want to help this team get in position to win and get out of the first round."
Roy admitted that he thought his season, and possibly his career, might be over while he sat out more than two months treating his chronically ailing knees.
But he said his playoff performancesagainst Dallas, which included a magical 24-point performance in Game 4, has bolstered his hopes for next season. Roy averaged 9.3 points and 2.8 assists and made 22-of-44 shots in 23 minutes a game during the playoffs.
"To be able to come back and play and be able to contribute in playoff games is big for me, big for my confidence, especially going forward," Roy said.
Apr 30, 2011 2:22 PM EDT
In advance of the Celtics-Heat series, Ray Allen sat down to chat with ESPN Boston's Jackie MacMullan.
Asked about LeBron James' dubbing the 76ers "breakfast," Allen notes about Boston, "You gotta have a big appetite, because we're a smorgasbord."
Apr 30, 2011 2:19 PM EDT
Antonio McDyess is ready to call it quits.
“This was my last game,” the 16-year veteran said. “I’m pretty definite on that. But this was not the way I wanted it to end.”
McDyess suffered another “stinger” in the third quarter of the Grizzlies’ 99-91 victory at the FedEx Forum, temporarily losing the feeling in his left arm, as he had in Game 3 at the same venue.
This time, he was able to return to the game, scoring 10 points and doing a yeoman, if futile, defensive job on Zach Randolph. The Grizzlies’ power forward scored 17 points in the fourth quarter, including 12 in the final 4:25 after a McDyess 20-foot jumper had given the Spurs their first lead since the first quarter.
“He did everything he could against Zach,” Spurs coach Gregg Popovich said.
Apr 30, 2011 2:16 PM EDT
The Bulls resumed practice Friday at the Berto Center, while Carlos Boozer took another day off to rest a turf toe injury on his right foot.
Boozer suffered the injury in the Game 5 clincher against Indiana on Tuesday. His status for Monday's series opener against Atlanta is unknown, but the consensus is he will play.
“It's hard to say, but I'm thinking he will be able to,” coach Tom Thibodeau said. “It's gotten better each day. They've done the MRI. They've done all that stuff. The big thing is he feels a lot better today than he did yesterday, so hopefully tomorrow will be better.”
Forward Taj Gibson often starts when Boozer is out, but he didn't sound concerned, either.
“Knowing Carlos, I know he's going to play,” Gibson said. “I'm ready to jump in whenever coach Thibs needs me.”
The Blazers have until June 30 to exercise a $7.8 million option to retain Andre Miller for next season.
There are reports that the Blazers may make a four-year, $40 million offer to Greg Oden.
Both Jason Richardson and Earl Clark will be free agents this offseason.
Gilbert Arenas averaged a little more than 16 minutes per game in five playoff games.
Apr 30, 2011 | Press Release
Stefhon Hannah scored 31 points and added eight rebounds to lead the Iowa Energy to the NBA D-League Championship with a 119-111 victory over the Rio Grande Valley Vipers on Friday.
Apr 29, 2011 | Press Release
Kirk Hinrich suffered a significant strain to his right hamstring.
The Celtics want to limit Chris Bosh in their semifinal playoff series.
Magic GM Otis Smith said a contract extension is on the table.
Larry Riley has high hopes for the Warriors.
Rajon Rondo insists his days of worrying about missed free throws are over.
John Calipari is organizing a combine for his draft-eligible players.
Serge Ibaka has a 2 block per game edge on Joakim Noah.
Doc Rivers said Shaquille O'Neal has made progress in the past few days.
The Knicks front office will encourage Mike D'Antoni to hire a defensive coach.
Paul Pierce checked LeBron James 69 percent of the time during the regular season.
Celtics coach Doc Rivers minimized the importance of Boston's bench advantage over Miami.
Billionaire Henry Samueli has offered to increase his personal loan to the Kings.
Nuggets general manager Masai Ujiri has every intention of re-signing Aaron Afflalo.
Kenyon Martin talked about his upcoming free agency.
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Chris Paul was pleased with the Hornets' effort this season.
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