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Basketball Wiretap
Basketball news gathered from around the net.

Karl Towns Jr. To Announce College Decision On Tuesday

Karl Towns Jr. will announce his college choice on Tuesday at St. Joseph High School in Metuchen, N.J.

Towns is expected to pick Kentucky in part because of his close relationship with John Calipari.

The 6-foot-10 Towns spent this past summer playing for Calipari on the Dominican national team.

Via John Haley/Newark Star-Ledger

Beilein Attributes Offensive Efficiency To Ball Control, Second-Chance Opportunities

Michigan ranks fourth nationally in team field goal percentage (52.4), eleventh in three-point percentage (42.7) and second in points per possession (1.25) this season.

"The number of points we score per possession is leading the Big Ten, and it's a good number," Wolverines coach John Beilein said. "If you score over a point per possession, we're really pleased with that.

"We've got two things happening, we've got low turnovers, and extra possessions from offensive rebounding. ... When you get a few stickbacks, that's a quick percentage booster."

Beilein has enjoyed tinkering with different lineups to create maximum efficiency.

"It's a good problem to have, but figuring it all out (has been tough at times)," Beilein said. "(Depth) gives us the latitude to play three centers if we want, to go big or go small.

"When you only have five or six players, there's not a lot of thinking. ... Now, you can (work with) different rotations and different players."

Via Nick Baumgardner/Michigan Live

Jabari Parker To Forgo Mormon Mission, Play College Basketball Next Year

Jabari Parker will attend college rather than go on a Mormon mission after he graduates from high school next year.

"I know for a fact that I'm going to college my first year," Parker announced on Friday.

Parker would like to make his college decision by January or February at the latest.

"If I want to make my announcement in the winter, I'm probably behind schedule," Parker said. "I probably will need to be doing a little more work. I'm getting lazy. … My decision, it's going to come kind of easy because I have a lot of people in my circle just telling me different things."

Via ESPN 1000 Radio (via Diamond Leung/Michigan Live)

Spurs Fined $250,000 By NBA

The San Antonio Spurs have been fined $250,000 by the NBA for their decision to not send Tony Parker, Tim Duncan, Manu Ginobili and Danny Green to play in Thursday's game against the Miami Heat.

The NBA contends that the Spurs' actions were in violation of a league policy, reviewed with the NBA Board of Governors in April 2010, against resting players in a manner contrary to the best interests of the NBA.

"The result here is dictated by the totality of the facts in this case," said David Stern. "The Spurs decided to make four of their top players unavailable for an early-season game that was the team's only regular-season visit to Miami. The team also did this without informing the Heat, the media, or the league office in a timely way. Under these circumstances, I have concluded that the Spurs did a disservice to the league and our fans."

A source told Marc J. Spears of Yahoo! Sports that there would be no separate fines or suspensions to Gregg Popovich.

Via RealGM Staff Report

Sklava Kravtsov Still Waiting For First Minutes With Pistons

Sklava Kravtsov is the only player on the Detroit Pistons who has yet to have played in a game this season.

"It was not what I expected at all," Kravtsov said on Friday.  "But this is life.  You can not stop because of that.  You should prove yourself at the practices and keep working to find yourself, and sometimes a chance comes to you.  You just have to be ready for it."

Lawrence Frank has said that he would begin to play Kravtsov when he's ready.

"I think I'm ready," he said.  "I've worked hard this month.  I rested a lot on my body.  I worked on my skills with Roy (Rogers, Pistons assistant coach).  I think I get much better.  And I think I can show something right now.  I think I could help a lot.  I just need to show it."

Via David Mayo/MLive

Kidd's MRI Shows No Damage To Back

Jason Kidd revealed on Friday that he underwent an MRI on his injured back, which didn't show anything significant.

Kidd will miss his third straight game with back spasms on Friday and is likely to sit on Sunday as well.

"I hope so," Kidd said. “That’s the plan - to get me back out there sometime next week. I feel great. A lot better as the week’s gone on. That’s the goal is to be 100 percent when you come back. No need to rush. Today was a great day working out. We’ll see how I feel tomorrow."

Kidd hopes to be ready to return for the start of the Knicks' three-game road trip on Wednesday.

Via Marc Berman/New York Post

Michael Dixon Leaves Missouri

Michael Dixon left the Missouri program amid two sexual assault claims.

Dixon has not been charged in either case.

"It's been a challenging few months and while I appreciate the support of many in the Mizzou community, including my coaches and teammates, it's in the best interest of me, my family and the University of Missouri for me to finish my career elsewhere," Dixon said.

Dixon was briefly suspended for violating unspecified team rules in December 2010 by former coach Mike Anderson.

The absence of criminal charges in both cases prompted a groundswell of support for Dixon's reinstatement among Missouri fans, with some Twitter posts calling for the school to "Free Mike Dixon."

Via USA Today

Four Hofstra Players Suspended, Charged With Burglary

The Hofstra University men’s basketball team announced Friday that freshmen Jimmy Hall, Dallas Anglin and Kentrell Washington and sophomore Shaquille Stokes have all been arrested and charged with “various counts of burglary.”

The four players have been suspended from the team indefinitely, pending the outcome of the case.

The losses of Hall and Stokes will be especially tough for Hofstra, as they were the team’s second- and fourth-leading scorers, respectively.

Hofstra has a record of 3-4.

Via Kieran Darcy/ESPN

Magic Talk Over Concerns With Effort, Accountability, Roles

Following a lackluster 110-89 loss to the San Antonio Spurs on Wednesday, the Orlando Magic openly acknowledged concerns with the team’s effort, accountability and ability to define roles. On Thursday, coaches and players held a team meeting where they discussed those issues.

Magic coach Jacque Vaughn welcomed seeing his players hold each other accountable.

"I think we still need to find out who's our guys and who's not our guys," said Glen Davis, who most likely initiated the meeting along with Arron Afflalo. "Then everybody can kind of move on. At the same time, we need to grow. We need to find out who's our energy guy, who's our vocal guy.

"At times like this, we really need to bite down and check each other … and see what we can all do to make this team better."

While the meeting was productive, the Magic believe they are still working to mesh as a team. J.J. Redick understands building chemistry will take time, but he also doesn’t want that to affect the Magic’s effort.

"The goal is to get better every day, and we took a step back, and that's just unacceptable because we can't have steps back,” Redick said.

Via Brian Schmitz/Orlando Sentinel

Jordan Interested In Bringing Hornets' Nickname Back To Charlotte

Michael Jordan has expressed interest in having the Hornets' nickname return to Charlotte.

“It’s definitely an interest down the road, but right now it’s the New Orleans Hornets,” Jordan told the Observer. “We would definitely entertain the opportunity. That’s as much as we can say right now. We’ve heard the community ask the question, and we would listen.”

Many in Charlotte continue to have fondness for the Hornets' teal-and-purple.

The New Orleans Hornets are interested in changing the nickname to something more associated with Louisiana.

The NBA already owns the rights to the name Charlotte Hornets, which would make a transition fairly easy.

The Bobcats were named after initial owner Robert L. Johnson.

Via Rick Bonnell/Charlotte Observer

Calipari Envisions Coaching At Kentucky For At Least Six More Years

John Calipari has compiled a 102-14 record in three full seasons as Kentucky's head coach.

Warriors Assign Kent Bazemore To Santa Cruz

Kent Bazemore has appeared in six games for Golden State this season, recording two rebounds, two steals, two blocks and one assist in 10 minutes.

SMU Showcasing Larry Brown To Raise Funds, Generate Program Awareness

Larry Brown is in his first year with Southern Methodist University.

Rockets Assign Terrence Jones, Machado To Vipers

The Rockets have assigned rookies Terrence Jones and Scott Machado to the Rio Grande Valley Vipers.

Celtics Recall Kris Joseph From D-League

Kris Joseph averaged 25.5 points, 7.5 rebounds, 3.5 assists, 2.0 steals and 1.0 block in two games while on assignment.

Myers Takes Blame For Bogut Surgery Controversy

The Warriors have finally admitted that Andrew Bogut had undergone a more serious surgery.

Blazers Plan On Sending Several Young Players To D-League

The Blazers will soon use the Idaho Stampede to allow several young players to receive playing time in the D-League.

Raptors Reach Agreement With Mickael Pietrus, McGuire To Be Waived

Mickael Pietrus has reached agreement on a one-year, veteran-minimum contract with the Raptors.

Stern Promises Sanctions Against Spurs, Apologizes To Fans

Gregg Popovich and the Spurs' franchise are expected to receive a penalty from the NBA for their decision to send home several starters.

Jabari Parker Received Recruiting Advice From Derrick Rose

Jabari Parker received some recruiting advice from Derrick Rose.

Sam Presti Attends Oklahoma State Practice

Sam Presti traveled to Stillwater on Thursday to watch the Oklahoma State Cowboys practice.

Cavaliers Sign Kevin Jones, Waive Luke Harangody

As a member of the Charge, Kevin Jones has appeared in three games, averaging 27.0 points, good for third-best in the NBA D-league to go with 13.7 rebounds and 41.3 minutes.

Brook Lopez Out Two Games With Sprained Foot

Brook Lopez will be day-to-day after missing the next two games.

Rondo Receives Two-Game Suspension

Rajon Rondo has been suspended for two games due to his involvement in Wednesday's altercation with Kris Humphries.

Spurs Send Duncan, Parker, Ginobili, Green Home; Will Play Nine Against Heat

Gregg Popovich will have nine active players.

Jannero Pargo Hopes To Sign NBA Deal Soon

Jeremy Pargo averaged three points and two assists in seven games for the Wizards this season before being waived on Nov. 15.

Jeremy Lamb Assigned By Thunder To 66ers

Jeremy Lamb has appeared in eight games this season averaging 2.1 points in 4.3 minutes.

Suns Assign Kendall Marshall To D-League

Kendall Marshall has appeared in six games for the Suns this season, averaging 1.2 points and 5.7 minutes.

Mavericks Waive Troy Murphy To Sign Derek Fisher

Troy Murphy averaged 4.6 points and 3.5 rebounds in 18.3 minutes over 14 games before being waived to create a roster spot for Derek Fisher.

David Thompson Auctions Off Memorabilia

David Thompson has agreed to put 49 items from his Hall of Fame career up for auction.
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