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Basketball Wiretap
Basketball news gathered from around the net.

Warriors Win Coin Flip Against Raptors

The Warriors won their tie-break coin flip against the Raptors and will be slotted seventh in the 2012 Lottery, according to a source.

Golden State's first round pick would go to the Jazz if it falls outside the top-seven.

The Warriors went 3-17 over their final 20 games of the season.

Via Marcus Thompson/Mercury News (via Twitter)

U.S. Attorney's Office Investigating NBPA

The NBPA is being investigated by the U.S. Attorney's Office in Manhattan.

Union Executive Director Billy Hunter was notified of the investigation by subpoena for documents on April 25, according to two people with direct knowledge of the situation. The people were granted anonymity because they weren’t authorized to discuss the investigation.

“The NBPA will cooperate fully with the government’s investigation,” the union statement said.

NBPA President Derek Fisher had called for an independent review of its finances and business practices earlier in April.

Via Scott Soshnick, Mason Levinson/Bloomberg

Billups Has Played Key Role Mentoring DeAndre Jordan

Chauncey Billups has served as a mentor to DeAndre Jordan this season.

Billups played with Ben Wallace for many seasons and he believes Jordan could have a similar impact.

Jordan will play a big role in the Clippers' first round series against the Grizzlies.

"For us to have an excellent opportunity in this series, DJ is going to have to play very well, just like everybody," Vinny Del Negro said.

"I have to be our defensive anchor," Jordan said. "Just kind of be everybody's safety net. Me back there gives everybody a lot of more confidence to gamble [on defense]. And then I have to rebound, be one of the leaders, especially on the defensive end."

Billups talks to Jordan at practice, video sessions, shoot-arounds and during the game.

"He's been very receptive," Billups said. "He wants to be looked at like one of the best defenders in the league.

"But it's a process and sometimes I've got to slow myself down and remember that he is young and he doesn't have a lot of experience. I'm talking about a finished product in Ben Wallace and not the first stages. I think that DJ can certainly get there. He has a little ways to go, but he's locked into trying to get there and that's the most important thing."

Via Broderick Turner/Los Angeles Times

Pierce Sprains Left Big Toe

Paul Pierce sprained his left big toe during Thursday's regular season finale.

Pierce briefly went into the locker room before returning to the bench.

Pierce was limited to seven minutes in the game.

Via Gary Washburn/Boston Globe

Wilcox Plans To Return From Aortic Surgery Next Season

Chris Wilcox watched Boston's Thursday's regular season finale from a baseline seat, his first game back since undergoing surgery for an enlarged aorta on March 29.

Wilcox will be able to return to basketball activities in three months and plans to remain in the NBA.

"I'm feeling good man, I'm feeling a whole lot better," he said at halftime of the Celtics-Bucks game. "It's over with now. (The doctor) told me I got like a couple of more months to get back right and then a month to recover and I'm straight. I've been doing cardiac rehab, so I'm feeling a whole lot better now."

Via Gary Washburn/Boston Globe

Nets Close New Jersey-Era With 31-Point Loss

The Nets ended their tenure in New Jersey with a 98-67 loss to the Raptors.

The loss improves the Nets' chances in the lottery.

Ed Davis scored a career-high 24 points for the Raptors, who ended a four-game losing streak.

Gerald Green scored 10 points as he enters free agency.

Via AP

Villanueva, Gordon Enter Offseason As Amnesty Candidates

Charlie Villanueva could be amnestied this offseason if the Pistons make a move in free agency.

Villanueva is scheduled to make $8 million in 12-13 and has a player option for $8.5 million during the 13-14 season.

I would like to stay here,” Villanueva said. “I love it here, I love it here. At the same time, I'm a realist.”

Ben Gordon is another amnesty candidate, making $12 million for 12-13 and more than $13 million for 13-14 on a player option.

“Anything's possible, anything's possible,” said Gordon. “That's always in the back of your mind. But until you're told something, until you hear something, you just always assume you'll be here.”

Both Gordon and Villanueva were signed in the 2009 offseason.

Via MLive.com

Bayless Prefers To Remain With Raptors

Jerryd Bayless will be a restricted free agent this summer.

The Raptors can make the $4.16 million qualifying offer, negotiate a long-term extension or possibly match a competing offer from another team.

Bayless believes he can be an NBA starter, though some feel he is better suited in a combo guard role off the bench.

Bayless would like to remain with the Raptors.

“I kind of have an idea” (of what the future holds)," said Bayless about his agent speaking with Bryan Colangelo.

Bayless will carry a $7.6 million cap hit until he is signed.

Via Ryan Wolstat/Toronto Sun

Bird Denies Rumor Of Impending Departure

Larry Bird again denied reports that he will leave the Pacers at the end of the season.

Ken Berger of CBSSports.com reported Thursday that Bird has told “several friends in the NBA that he’s decided to leave” and that he wants owner Herb Simon to start planning for him to step away at the end of the season.

“Once again, no decision has been made,” Bird said by phone Thursday evening. “I’ll sit down with my owner at the end of the season and we’ll talk about things.”

Via Mike Wells/Indianapolis Star

Davis Compares Knicks To 'We Believe' Warriors

Baron Davis sees some of the 2006-07 Golden State Warriors in the 2011-12 New York Knicks.

Davis was the starting point guard on the 06-07 Golden State team that upset the No. 1 seeded Mavericks in the first round of the playoffs.

“The thing we had with the Warriors going against Dallas is we knew we could win that series,’’ Davis said. “And we won it. The confidence was there. We share the same type of energy here with the Knicks, knowing that nobody is counting us in it to win it but what we believe in ourselves in the ability to stop people down the stretch.’’

The Knicks haven't won a playoff series in 12 years.

“We set out with a goal at the beginning of the year and it was to be a championship-caliber team, make the playoffs and play towards a championship,’’ said Davis. “And through all the bumps and bruises we had all having a new coach, we’re still a very good team. We’re a better team than when we started the season. We have camaraderie that is unbelievable.’’

Via New York Post

Camby Would Prefer Return To Rockets

Marcus Camby will have no shortage of suitors as an unrestricted free agent.

Gores Expects Pistons To Make Playoffs Next Season

Tom Gores believes he has enough talent to turn the Pistons into playoff contenders.

Iverson Open To Playing In China Next Season

Allen Iverson will look at China as an option if he continues to be unable to return to the NBA.

Derrick Coleman In Talks To Become Assistant At SMU

Derrick Coleman played three seasons under Larry Brown as a member of the Sixers.

Eddie Jordan Enjoying Stint Coaching AAU Basketball

Eddie Jordan coached nine seasons in the NBA.

Trey Burke Will Likely Turn Pro If Michigan Has Great Season

Trey Burke hopes to compete for a national championship next season.

Jabari Parker Takes Attention In Stride

Jabari Parker has offers from college basketball power programs such as Duke, Kentucky, Kansas and North Carolina.

Cody Zeller Wants To Mature Before Declaring For Draft

Cody Zeller put a hold on his NBA career mostly because he thought he wasn't quite mature enough for the pros.

Eric Musselman Named D-League Coach Of The Year

Eric Musselman recorded an NBA D-League record 38 victories during the 2011-12 regular season.

Kobe To Sit, Durant Wins 3rd Straight Scoring Title

Kevin Durant averaged 28.0 points per game.

Source: Raptors Won't Pursue Vujacic

The Raptors are not interested in pursuing Sasha Vujacic in free agency this offseason.

Jamison Won't Re-Sign With Cleveland

Antawn Jamison will be an unrestricted free agent this offseason.

Paul Vows To Be Healthy Enough For Start Of Playoffs

Vinny Del Negro preferred helping Chris Paul heal rather than seek homecourt advantage against Memphis.

Suns' Fans Close Out Season With 'We Want Steve' Chant

Steve Nash will be an unrestricted free agent this offseason and intends to play three more seasons.

Amile Jefferson Hopes To Choose School Next Week

Amile Jefferson is one of the top unsigned seniors in the country.

Randolph Childress Joins Wake Forest As Director Of Player Development

Randolph Childress retired from professional basketball in 2011.

Kyle Anderson MRI Indicates Torn Thumb Ligaments

Kyle Anderson recently committed to play for UCLA.

Team USA Won't Expand Roster Candidates

USA Basketball will not add any players to their preliminary squad.

Kobe 'Absolutely' Expects To Win Championship

Kobe Bryant believes he will win his sixth NBA championship this season.

Maccabi Haifa To Hire Bernie Fine As Consultant

Bernie Fine will consult from the United States.
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