PASPN.net - Nick Young thinks the Clippers have one of the NBA’s best bench units, is wrong (Ball Don't Lie)
Kevin Durant News
Trans. Apr 17 12:05 ET (Apr 17 12:05 ET ) The Los Angeles Clippers posted an impressive win on Monday night, notching a 92-77 home victory over the Oklahoma City Thunder — their second straight over the Kevin Durant- and Russell Westbrook-led crew — to extend their winning streak to four and stay just a game back of the Los Angeles Lakers for the No. 3 seed in the Western Conference with five games to play.
It was an impressive win that saw some impressive performances off the L.A. bench, which chipped in 36 points on just under 50 percent shooting for the game, plus 17 rebounds, five assists, four steals and two blocks. After the game, Clippers guard Nick Young — who did the lion's share of the damage, leading the Clips in scoring with 19 points on 10 shots in reserve duty — dapped up his fellow second-unit players for their contributions. From Beth Harris of The Associated Press :
''We're one of the best second units in the league,'' said Young, who joined the Clippers a month ago in a trade from Washington. ''I'm excited. I was waiting for one of these type of games. To get it tonight against one of the league's top teams was great.''
It's good for Nick Young to think that — I'm sure coach Vinny Del Negro doesn't want his reserves to think that they stink or anything, and a Nick Young without confidence is a Nick Young less likely to take quite as many irrational long jumpers. (Wait, that might be a good thing.)
Realistically, though, he is wrong, and he's pumping the L.A. reserves' tires in a way that defies reality. The Clippers bench is not one of the best benches in the league. Like, definitely not.
Sure, LeBron James went home , Kevin Durant received $350 million to wear a brand of shoes he might've worn anyway and DeMarcus Cousins represented his country with honor , but Dirk Nowitzki is quietly enjoying the best summer, and we better start enjoying it with him before it's over. His Dallas Mavericks replaced three important but aging contributors to a team that took the San Antonio Spurs deeper into a series this past spring than anybody else — Jose Calderon, Vince Carter and Shawn Marion — by reacquiring old friend Tyson Chandler, swiping Chandler Parsons from the division rival Rockets and adding a couple capable point guards in Jameer Nelson and Raymond Felton. Is that group better than the one that took the Spurs to seven games in the first round this past season? Time will tell, obviously, but Nowitzki sure seems pleased as he makes the German media rounds. After all, one doesn't sing David Hasselhoff songs on national television without a certain degree of comfort. Hasselhoff's "Looking for Freedom" spent eight weeks at No. 1 on the German charts in 1989, when Nowitzki was an 11-year-old boy sporting lederhosen and clogs on the courts of Würzburg, and he later joked about humming the tune as part of his free throw shooting routine during the 2006 NBA playoffs. Soon afterwards, the former Baywatch star, seeking the spotlight like only the Hoff knows how, showed up on the sidelines of a Mavericks-Suns matchup in the Western Conference finals, and Nowitzki ultimately reached the finals as Miami Heat fans rained "Dav-id Hass-el-hoff" chants down upon him. This is Dirk's jam, so it's no wonder he pulls it off wonderfully on the set of Stefan Raab's German version of "The Tonight Show." But this isn't the only good news Nowitzki has offered in recent days. The 12-time All-Star has touched on topics ranging from his interest in returning to the German national team ( he will ) to his flatulence etiquette during interviews ( he will not ). Good news for Stefan Raab, apparently. Why so much fun with Dirk this summer? Well, he's promoting a documentary about his life entitled, " Nowitzki: Der Perfekte Wurf " ("Nowitzki: The Perfect Shot"), perhaps in an effort to make up for all that money he passed up by signing a three-year, $25 million deal to stay in Dallas this past July. Dirk Nowitzki. Not about the money. All about the Hoff. What a summer.
By Larry Fine NEW YORK (Reuters) - A spate of late withdrawals, a serious injury to Paul George and several marquee names missing appeared to put Team USA under a cloud for the 2014 Basketball World Cup and for future international competition. Instead, a group of sharp-shooting NBA regulars were unbeaten in Spain and produced a 129-92 victory over Serbia in the final to underline the depth the U.S. Stalwarts LeBron James, Kobe Bryant, Carmelo Anthony and Chris Paul were missing from the initial training camp, with Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook, Kevin Love and Blake Griffin bowing out late in the process before Indiana forward George broke his leg in training and could now miss the NBA season.
The Scoop:He wore a Robert Griffin III jersey and was spotted in the team shop. Durant is from the Washington area and has answered plenty of questions about joining the Wizards in a couple seasons, so his Sunday appearance will probably require him to answer even more questions. He's fantasy basketball's best player and it's not close.
Much has been written about Carmelo Anthony’s potential departure and eventual re-connection with the New York Knicks. How it wasn’t about the money, even though Carmelo Anthony turned down offers from better teams to play for less money. How it’s all about winning, even if it may take a while to succeed in New York under new president Phil Jackson and rookie head coach Derek Fisher. Now, we’ve got yet another reason. The guy doesn’t want to be a free agent again. Ever, ever, ever. (Even if he totally wanted to be a free agent this summer.) Anthony further discussed his reasoning at the same Bloomberg Sports Business Summit that provided Adam Silver’s telling remarks about legalized betting and the idea of early-morning NBA tip-offs to further accommodate Chinese viewership. Here’s Anthony’s take on what must have been a miserable summer, via the New York Post’s Marc Berman’s report : “I plan on ending my career here, so it wasn’t for me to go out there and try to strike a two-year deal and then have to go through this situation in two years. I’m not doing that ever again. I would never do that again. I would advise no one to ever do that,” Anthony said. “I experienced it and it’s behind me.” Remember that “behind me” entails five-star accommodations as Anthony was wined and dined and recruited in third-world outposts like Chicago, Los Angeles, Dallas and Houston . Also, ‘membah this :? “I want to be a free agent,” Anthony tells a reporter from the New York Observer, as their cigars burn close to the nub. “I think everybody in the NBA dreams to be a free agent at least one time in their career. It’s like you have an evaluation period, you know. It’s like if I’m in the gym and I have all the coaches, all the owners, all the GMs come into the gym and just evaluate everything I do. So yes, I want that experience.” Be careful what you wish for, I suppose. September snark aside, this is completely understandable from all angles. Anthony was never a free agent, prior to this summer, despite entering the NBA in 2003. His 2006 contract extension with Denver fell before his eventual free-agent status, and he signed an extension with New York upon forcing a trade to the Knicks in 2011. It’s nice to be wanted, and it’s nice to feel in control of your own destiny. It’s also nice to have potentially great teams, potentially interesting situations, and potential hundreds of millions of dollars offered to you by a variety of franchises. The Lakers aren’t doing anything any time soon, but they will have a future once Kobe Bryant’s contract comes off the books, and helping re-load a franchise while nesting by the waves of Malibu should have been incredibly appealing. Dallas didn’t figure to be an obvious championship contender even with Anthony suiting up alongside Dirk Nowitzki, but the Mavericks didn’t seem like an obvious championship contender heading into 2010-11, and that didn’t stop them from falling behind Rick Carlisle’s wily ways and winning a ring. Lining up alongside Dwight Howard, James Harden and lord knows who else in Kevin McHale and Daryl Morey’s madcap experiment with Houston? That could have been incredible, and possible championship, fun. Nobody knows how Derrick Rose will look while suiting for ( essentially ) his first time in two seasons, but a lineup featuring a brilliant defensive front court and emerging young bench talent under the leadership of Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau should have truly intrigued Anthony. Especially when the Bulls were apparently, for better or worse for the franchise, ready to offer Carmelo the same deal that is going to make LeBron James a whole heck of a lot of money: Melo says idea of a two-year deal, like what LeBron just agreed to, wasn't intriguing to him. Didn't want high-stress situation of FA again — Chris Herring (@HerringWSJ) September 4, 2014 CHI had reportedly floated the idea of a short-term 2-yr deal for Melo so he could re-sign for max in 2016. He says that wasnt appealing. — Chris Herring (@HerringWSJ) September 4, 2014 Melo: "Over five years, the amount of money I left on the table, relative to the contract that I got, it’s not a lot of money." — Chris Herring (@HerringWSJ) September 4, 2014 That would, as you know, make Anthony a free agent in 2016 at the age of 32, and possibly as his prime starts to decline. The Chicago Bulls can’t NBA-legally assure Anthony that a maximum contract extension following a two-year deal would be in the cards, and there’s always the possibility the franchise could take advantage of two years of Anthony’s prime at below his free-agent value, then pull the carpet out from underneath him and leave him without that expected extension just as his production starts to decline. Now, Chicago would run the risk of turning off just about every player agent and future NBA free agent in the process, but there’s always the chance. I suppose. Of course, there’s always this telling addendum, via the Post : Anthony noted a move also would have meant restarting his brand from scratch. “I just felt if I was to leave, I would have to … build that foundation up once again, and it took me a while to build that foundation and to get it up and going to where it’s at right now,” Anthony said. /Mr. Burns voice: Ah yes … the brand! Now “his brand” is Marc Berman’s choice of phrase, but he’s not wrong in using it. And Carmelo Anthony isn’t wrong in considering it – his off-court and on-court brand and, heaven forbid, thinking about his family . Anthony is explaining quite a bit away, but he doesn’t need to. All he has to do is align his statements, and we’d understand. The Knicks offered him the most amount of money, and the ability to play in a wonderful city while making an average of $26 million until he is 35. He and his wife enjoy New York, and the roots they’ve put down. Also, while the Knicks were embarrassing last season and won’t be much better in 2014-15, there is the sound possibility that Phil Jackson could at the very least turn the squad into an aesthetically-pleasing winner that Anthony would enjoy playing with. They won’t land Kevin Love or Kevin Durant, but things could eventually turn around, even if a championship isn’t in the offing. That’s just a paragraph’s worth of explanations. There’s no need to lie about how it wasn’t about the money, because money was a huge part of it, and we understand. There’s no need to hold your nose at the thought of free agency, 11 months after drooling over the prospect of no restriction, because anything can happen between now and 2016, and we understand. And don’t talk up building a foundation in New York, because it’s already shot to hell, and foundations in Houston, Chicago and Dallas are already in place. Just say that you love New York, you have faith in Phil Jackson, and that the guaranteed money was too much to pass up. We’d understand. Around the NBA: - - - - - - - Kelly Dwyer is an editor for Ball Don't Lie on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at KDonhoops@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter! Follow @KDonhoops
Thunder forward Kevin Durant said Thursday that he has signed a partnership deal with Orange Leaf Frozen Yogurt. Durant will own an undisclosed percentage of the company, his first such partnership since he joined the Roc Nation agency founded by Jay-Z last year. Orange Leaf, based in Oklahoma City, has 321 stores in 40 states, four in Australia and 69 under construction. Reese Travis, CEO of Orange Leaf, thought he was on the right track when he chose to pursue Durant as the company's first brand ambassador.
The Scoop:Keefe had been part of the Oklahoma City Thunder organization for seven years before being hired to join Derek Fischer's staff on Wednesday. The long-time assistant developed a close relationship with Durant during his time in Oklahoma City and Durant even credited Keefe with putting him in his place regarding his body language and attitude. While a lot can happen before Durant becomes a free agent after the 2015-16 season, it can't hurt the Knicks' recruiting pitch to have "Durant's guy" on their staff.
It's been a strange road for Kenneth Faried. From the moment he arrived in the association, his dichotomous nature as high-energy Manimal on the court and soft-spoken son of two mothers off it made him a media darling. And yet even as his star rises as Team USA's starting power forward, Faried's value as a once traditional player at a position that's evolving further from the basket remains in question. Drafted 22nd overall by the Nuggets, Faried earned a 2011-12 First Team All-Rookie selection and Rising Stars Challenge MVP honors upon collecting 40 points and 10 boards as a sophomore. The 6-foot-8, 228-pound Morehead State product averaged a double-double per 36 minutes each of his first three NBA seasons, and has replicated those numbers in the opening three games of the FIBA World Cup. While Faried has emerged as a perfect frontcourt pairing to Anthony Davis in the absence of Team USA stalwarts Kevin Durant, Kevin Love and Blake Griffin — all of whom bring their own set of skills to a position increasingly populated by stretch-4's — the criticism leveled at the Class of 2015 restricted free agent remains. We'll let Zach Lowe explain, as he did both fairly and pointedly for Grantland last month. Faried conceives of himself as a max-level player, but he can’t shoot and he has struggled defensively. He can’t protect the rim in the half-court (his chase-down blocks in transition kick major ass, though), and he’s never been an intuitive pick-and-roll defender. Lowe rightly noted Faried's tireless work ethic around the rim and in transition, skills that earned Kenyon Martin $91.75 million over seven seasons in Denver, but the Nuggets are determined not to hamstring themselves with the same contracts that ultimately left them Western Conference also-rans last decade. So, Denver general manager Tim Connelly has shopped Faried at every turn — for a first-round pick last year and more understandably for Kevin Love this summer — and if all of this seems like a strange way for a 36-win team in need of elite talent to court a 24-year-old All-Star-caliber player, then join the club. Speaking about last season in Denver last night, Team USAer Kenneth Faried said trade rumors "affect you when you want to stay somewhere" — Marc Stein (@ESPNSteinLine) September 3, 2014 Faried clearly wants to stay with Nuggets and is mounting quite a contract drive as negotiations continue on extension to keep him in Denver — Marc Stein (@ESPNSteinLine) September 3, 2014 Nuggets and Faried have until Halloween to finalize extension or Team USA's emerging energizer will become restricted free agent next summer — Marc Stein (@ESPNSteinLine) September 3, 2014 Restricted free agents experienced mixed results this summer. The Jazz matched Charlotte's four-year, $63 million offer to Gordon Hayward. The Mavericks snatched Chandler Parsons from Houston for three years and $46 million. Greg Monroe seems willing to sign Detroit's $5.5 million qualifying offer in hopes of cashing in as an unrestricted free agent next summer. And who the hell knows what's happening with Eric Bledsoe . All these options are on the table, as is a five-year extension worth eight figures annually. Given the history of stars using USA Basketball as a springboard to NBA success, the Nuggets may be wise to meet Faried's demands sooner rather than later. Granted, he's played three blowout wins against Finland, Turkey and New Zealand, but Faried's World Cup averages of 14.3 points on 80.8 percent shooting and 8.3 rebounds are impressive, and count Mike Krzyzewski among his growing list of fans. "Overall, from the start of training camp, he's been the biggest and best surprise and has turned out to be a very, very important player for us," USA Basketball's coach told ESPN.com . "He’s made that happen." That endorsement alone should have suitors lining up for Faried's services next summer. Then again, if rumors are to be believed, Denver couldn't find a team willing to part with a first-round pick for him last summer. The NBA sure is a strange road, even for a kid forever plowing full-speed ahead.
Reigning National Basketball Association MVP Kevin Durant has signed a new shoe deal with sports apparel retailer Nike, spurning a deal from rival Under Armour that reportedly was worth as much as $285 million over 10 years. "We are pleased to extend our relationship with Kevin Durant, one of the most exciting players in the game," Nike spokesman Brian Strong said Monday in an e-mail to Reuters. Durant, 25, one of the NBA's top shooters, has averaged 27.4 points per game since coming into the league seven years ago. The Oklahoma City Thunder forward, a five-time All-Star, averaged 32 points a game last season when he ended LeBron James' two-year run as the NBA's most valuable player.
Kevin Durant is staying with Nike. Nike spokesman Heter Myers confirmed that Durant will remain with the shoe giant. Myers said in a statement that Nike is ''pleased to extend our relationship with Kevin Durant, one of the most exciting players in the game.'' Nike did not release terms of the deal. Under Armour had reportedly offered the Oklahoma City Thunder star a major deal.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Reigning National Basketball Association MVP Kevin Durant has signed a new shoe deal with sports apparel retailer Nike, spurning a deal from rival Under Armour that reportedly was worth as much as $285 million over 10 years. "We are pleased to extend our relationship with Kevin Durant, one of the most exciting players in the game," Nike spokesman Brian Strong said Monday in an e-mail to Reuters. Strong declined to reveal the terms of the deal. Durant, 25, one of the NBA's top shooters, has averaged 27.4 points per game since coming into the league seven years ago. ...
The Scoop: None.
Sep 2 11:25 ET
News (various sources)
After realizing NBA dream, Serge Ibaka working to help reshape Africa (Yahoo Sports) (11 Days Ago | courtesy: Yahoo Sports) Serge Ibaka wants to show African children they, too, can accomplish their dreams. More...