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Basketball Wiretap
Basketball news gathered from around the net.

Walsh: I'm Worried About Oden

Knicks' GM Donnie Walsh was asked about the state of the NBA and the future of talented big men like Greg Oden and Andrew Bynum recently.

"I'm a little worried about Oden," Walsh admitted. "He's young and these young guys come in, but their bodies are not ready for the NBA, and they do get hurt. I think with real young players, they're not ready for the NBA. All of a sudden they're playing at our speed and our tempo against men. It seems that even if they don't get hit, they start breaking down a little bit."

Via New York Daily News

Artest: Class Of 2009 Could Be Overlooked

Rockets' forward Ron Artest agreed on Saturday when asked if he thought the free agent Class of 2009 has been overlooked as team jostle for position in the summer of 2010.

"I guess so, if there's any truth to that story," Artest said when asked if the class was underrated. "A lot of general managers haven't come out and said, 'Hey, we're all saving room [for 2009].' At least I haven't heard that. But we'll see how right they are if they are waiting for that 2010 class. I guess we'll all find out in 2012. We'll see who made the right decisions and who didn't. I'm not really worried about it. I'm just having fun, playing basketball."

Via Miami Herald

Bibby Unaware Of Serious Trade Rumors

Mike Bibby is unaware of any serious trade discussions involving him leaving Atlanta and claims that the media creates a majority of rumors.

Yahoo! Sports reported over the weekend that the Hawks were involved in talks with the Blazers about a deal involving Bibby.

"What the hell is Yahoo Sports?" Bibby said in jest on Saturday night. "That's news to me Sekou [Smith, of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution]. I never heard anything like that ... you and the rest of the damn media always making stuff up."

Via Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Grizzlies Claim No Deal In The Works

The Grizzlies claim that no trade is evident even though they have admitted having discussions with the Blazers recently.

Yahoo! Sports is reporting that the deal is essentially Mike Conley Jr. for Travis Outlaw.

A team source out of Memphis claims that talks will be ongoing, but the team isn't likely to make any moves before February.

Via Commercial Appeal

Heat Placing Marion On The Block?

An NBA source claims that the Heat have placed forward Shawn Marion on the block as they struggle out of the gate.

Marion, who is making $17.8 million in the final year of his contract, was rumored to be a trading chip this offseason.

Via Boston Globe

Kirilenko Day-To-Day With Ankle Injury

Jazz sixth man Andrei Kirilenko is day-to-day after leaving the team's loss to the Nets on Saturday in the first half with pain and inflammation in his right ankle.

He had X-rays taken on Saturday night, and results didn't reveal any sprains or fractures.

Kirilenko admitted that he felt discomfort in the ankle prior to Saturday's game.

Via Deseret News

Smith May Return Wednesday For Hawks

Hawks' forward Josh Smith hopes to return from a 12-game layoff on Wednesday when the team takes on the Grizzlies.

Smith suffered a high left ankle sprain on Nov. 7 against the Raptors.

"I'm ready to go right now," Smith said before Saturday's game. "But if the guys that know [the Hawks' athletic training staff] think I should wait a couple more games, I have to go with it."

Atlanta was 4-0 with Smith and are roughly .500 without him.

Via Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Spurs Assign Blake Ahearn To Austin

The San Antonio Spurs announced today that they have assigned guard Blake Ahearn to the Austin Toros, the NBA Development League team owned and operated by the Spurs.

Ahearn has appeared in three games for the Spurs and averaged 2.7 points in 6.3 minutes.  He was signed by San Antonio on 11/16.

Via Press Release

Pacers Give No Excuses For Recent Struggles

The Pacers have lost five of their last six games to fall to 6-10 on the season but aren't blaming their slide on anything in particular.

"We've just got to get better at winning, period," point guard T.J. Ford said. "I don't think it has anything to do with the (schedule)."

Indiana lost to Orlando on Saturday night thanks to a huge performance from Dwight Howard, after losing to Charlotte in overtime on Friday night.

"It's not just Dwight Howard," center Rasho Nesterovic said. "It's been a couple nights in a row. We just have to figure out the way to overcome this. It's as simple as that. You can talk about all the this and that, but you have to stick together as a team and start winning."

Via Indianapolis Star

Struggling Warriors Without Jackson

Golden State guard Stephen Jackson sat out the team's loss to New York on Saturday night with a sprained left wrist.

Jackson hurt the wrist on the team's five-game road trip and aggravated it during a loss to Cleveland on Friday night.

Jackson, who is averaging 21.4 points per game, was replaced by Marco Belinelli in the starting lineup.

Via NBA.com

Lee, Duhon Have Record Nights In Win

The Knicks knocked off the Warriors, 138-125, on Saturday night thanks to a trio of record-setting performances.

Bynum's Pain Remains The Same

Andrew Bynum didn't practice on Saturday for the Lakers but reported no setbacks in his injured right ankle.

Jermaine Expects To Play Against Lakers

Raptors' center Jermaine O'Neal expects to play on Sunday night against the Lakers after a two-game absence.

Howard Tests Ankle, Leaves Dallas Win

Josh Howard tried to test his sore ankle on Saturday night when the Mavericks battled the Kings, but after just a few minutes he went to the locker room in pain.

Walsh Hoping To End Marbury 'Distraction' Monday

Stephon Marbury may be a free agent as early as this week.

Crawford Gets MSG Video Tribute And Standing Ovation

Jamal Crawford received a standing ovation from the MSG crowd on his return to Madison Square Garden as a Warrior.

McGrady Out Two Games

Tracy McGrady said he cannot go on limping and is going to fly to Birmingham, Alabama, on Monday to discuss his future.

Theus Upset With Sacramento's Effort

Kings' coach Reggie Theus would have liked to see some frustration from his players on Friday night when the Jazz scored 44 points in the third quarter.

Dallas Rejecting All Offers For Kidd?

The Mavericks have reportedly been rejecting all offers for point guard Jason Kidd.

Magic's Pietrus Is Out 3-5 Weeks With Thumb Injury

Magic guard Mickael Pietrus will be out three to five weeks because of a torn ligament in his right thumb.

Webster Will Get Full Practice Monday

Martell Webster has been cleared by team doctors to return to practice for the first time since breaking a bone in his left foot on Oct. 8.

Parker Returns, Spurs Remain Hot

Tony Parker returned to the Spurs on Friday night against the Grizzlies in a reserve role after missing nine games with a sprained ankle.

Iverson Comes Off Bench, Leads Pistons

Pistons' guard Allen Iverson came off the bench on Friday night against the Bucks after missing practice on Thursday.

Stoudemire Voices Displeasure With System

After Phoenix's loss to Miami on Friday, center Amare Stoudemire expressed his unhappiness with the team's system.

Conley Reunited With Oden?

Could Mike Conley be once again be looking to pass the basketball to Greg Oden?

Knick Assistants Have To Scrimmage

Mike D'Antoni had to have his assistants scrimmage with his players as he did not have enough numbers.

Crawford: Knicks Blew It

Jamal Crawford returns to the Garden tonight as a member of the Golden State Warriors, and he believes that the Knicks' management blew it when it came to how to handle the Stephon Marbury situation.

LeBron Blasts 'Stupid' Barkley

LeBron James has responded strongly to comments made by Charles Barkley that James is disrespecting the Cavaliers and their fans by discussing his free agency year in 2010.

Shaq On Heat: 'I Love Those Guys'

Phoenix center Shaquille O'Neal doesn't have any ill towards Miami, as he prepares to do battle with his former team on Friday night.

Bosh: I Think I Can Be MVP

Raptors forward Chris Bosh believes that he could be the NBA's MVP this season.
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