Posts Tagged ‘SI.com’

Report: Coach K To Stick With USA Basketball?



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HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS – When the U.S. Men’s Senior National Team finished off the competition at the London Olympics in 2012, head coach Mike Krzyzewski was primed to ride off into the sunset with a sparking 62-1 record, two gold medals in Olympic competition (2008 in Beijing) and one in World Championship competition (2010 Istanbul).

Every indication was that the longtime Duke coach had finished the job USA Basketball chairman Jerry Colangelo needed him to and that his replacement would be sought while Coach K moved on in some capacity to assist Colangelo manage the rebuilt program.

But now comes word, via a report from SI.com‘s Pete Thamel, that Coach K is reconsidering his future with the program and could potentially return as coach of the team for the 2014 World Championship in Madrid and the 2016 Olympics in Rio De Janeiro.

It’s an abrupt about-face after months and months of speculation about who might replace Krzyzewski on the sideline with the Men’s Senior National Team and also a stern departure from Coach K’s own words, as recently as February on an ESPN Radio program where he suggested that his successor could be named by this summer.

Things changed dramatically today, per that SI.com report:

On Saturday, Krzyzewski said he and USA Basketball Chairman Jerry Colangelo have been talking about his return “quite a bit.”

Colangelo said Saturday he and Krzyzewski have been discussing his return “in installments.”

“I think it’s very close to being resolved,” Colangelo said. “That’s all I can say for sure.”

He added: “Give it another week and it should be resolved.”

Nailing down a head coach is the only outstanding business Colangelo has to tend to right now, because the player pool for the national team is as strong now as it’s since he took over in 2005.

Scores of NBA superstars, All-Stars and role players will be eager to be a part of the teams that represent the U.S. in Madrid and Rio De Janeiro. And that list should include four-time MVP LeBron James as well as All-Stars Kevin Durant, Chris Paul, Carmelo Anthony and plenty more.

Were Coach K to return to the program, procuring commitments for future competition wouldn’t appear to be much of an issue, given his history with so many of the players that would be in the mix. The continuity alone would ensure that the U.S. program resembles, at least in structure, many of the international programs they’ll compete against in the coming years.

Surprise! League Execs/Insiders Favor Heat, Thunder And Lakers This Season


HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS –
In what has to be the most dependable vote we’ll see this election season, a smattering of anonymous NBA executives and coaches have chosen the Miami Heat as favorites to walk away with the Larry O’Brien trophy at end of the 2012-13 season.

According to the unofficial poll conducted by our main man Sam Amick of SI.com, it’s a three-team race this season between the Heat, Los Angeles Lakers and Oklahoma City Thunder (with those second two often in flip-flopped order, depending on the ballot). But in the view of the 20 league insiders, it’s strictly a three-team race:

The final tally, with three of the voters submitting only first-place votes: The defending champions in Miami received 16 first-place votes, one second-place vote and two third-place votes; their Finals foe, Oklahoma City, garnered two first-place votes, six second-place votes and nine third-place votes; and the Lakers, who have added Dwight Howard and Steve Nash to Kobe Bryant and Pau Gasol, got two first-place votes, 10 second-place votes and six third-place votes. The Lakers may not be seen as the favorites to win it all, but the idea that they’re the top threat to the Heat is not only a topic of much discussion in the media but also clearly a very real sentiment in NBA circles.

For good measure, my top three — with all of us playing in this pretend world where everyone is fully healthy — would be the Heat, Lakers and Thunder. Reality, of course, may be something altogether different.

Tempting though it was to put the Lakers in the hypothetical top spot, there is a laundry list of factors to keep an eye on as their star-studded season unfolds: the health of Howard, who is still not doing on-court activity after having back surgery in April; the age and mileage of Nash (38 years old, 16 regular seasons and 118 playoff games played) and Bryant (34, 16 regular seasons and 220 playoff games); the question of chemistry and whether Bryant will defer enough to let Nash work his magic while keeping Howard happy enough in his new locale that he wants to re-sign as a free agent next summer; and the installation of Pete Carril‘s famed Princeton offense (former Wizards and Kings coach Eddie Jordan, a Carril protégé, is expected to be hired as an assistant and do the teaching under defensive-minded head coach Mike Brown).

We’re not sure how excited we are about our extra early preseason view of the title contenders coinciding with that of so many league insiders, since we’ve never been particularly fond of the herd mentality that has permeated the front offices of so much of the league.

Then again, what other threesome would you choose right now?

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Report: Anthony Davis Injures Ankle, Could Be Out Two Weeks … Olympics?





HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS – An ankle sprain suffered in a Sunday workout could cost Hornets rookie Anthony Davis the next two weeks and possibly a spot on the team that will represent the United State in London during the Olympics, according to multiple reports.

“I heard that Anthony Davis sprained his ankle yesterday but I don’t know how serious it is,” USA Basketball chairman Jerry Colangelo told Sam Amick of SI.com. “It was in a workout. I’m not going to worry about that unless I’m advised at this point.”

“Just getting a report that his ankle is serious doesn’t mean anything to me until we get an official doctor’s report on what that means. Does it mean he can’t practice for a week? Does it mean he’s out for a month? You know what I’m saying. I don’t like to speculate.”

Asked if there would be any wiggle room at all regarding the inability to add names to the Team USA roster finalists, he said, “I don’t know for sure. I’m not 100 percent certain. So that will be another call.”

The No.1 overall pick in the Draft last week, Davis was added last month to the player pool for the U.S. Team, a group that has been ravaged by injury defections recently.

Heat stars Chris Bosh (abdominal injury) and Dwyane Wade (knee surgery) had to drop out last week, joining Dwight Howard, Derrick Rose, LaMarcus Aldridge and Chauncey Billups on the list of injured players who will not be able to participate in training camp that begins this weekend in Las Vegas.

Report: Blazers Offer Pacers’ All-Star Center Hibbert The Max?





HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS – The price tag for big men in the NBA, both the stars and the wanna be stars, is always high, just ask guys like the Clippers’ DeAndre Jordan or the Mavericks’ Brendan Haywood.

The price for big men in free agency, however, can get a little wild. For proof, look no further than the reported $8 million the Houston Rockets are offering restricted free agent backup center Omer Asik of Chicago or the reported max deal the Portland Trail Blazers have offered All-Star center Roy Hibbert of Indiana.

The Pacers have not offered Hibbert a max deal, according to SI.com‘s Sam Amick, a move that all but forces Hibbert to sign the Blazers’ offer sheet.

Drafting 7-footer Meyers Leonard didn’t answer all of the Blazers’ big man needs. Adding Hibbert to their mix would, theoretically, give them an ideal frontcourt pairing with LaMarcus Aldridge.

But like the Bulls with Asik, the Pacers have the right to match any offer to Hibbert.

Hang Time Podcast (Episode 82) With Fran Blinebury And Zach Lowe

HANG TIME PLAYOFF HEADQUARTERS – It seems like we were in this same space last week, with seasons on the brink, legacies on the line and eras on the verge of ending and beginning.

The teams might have changed but the circumstances stay the same during the NBA’s playoff season. It’s win-or-go-fishing time for both the San Antonio Spurs (tonight in the Western Conference finals) and the Miami Heat (Thursday night in the Eastern Conference finals).

We’re going to find out in the next 48 hours if Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook, James Harden and the rest of the Oklahoma City Thunder are ready to replace the Spurs’ Tony Parker, Tim Duncan and Manu Ginobili (not to mention the Lakers and Mavericks) as the new power of the Western Conference. And we’re also going to find out if Rajon Rondo, Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce, Ray Allen and the rest of the Boston Celtics are ready to make one last stand in The Finals by taking down Miami’s LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh.

We’re diving in on all that and whole lot more in Episode 82 of the Hang Time Podcast with a couple of special guests, NBA.com’s Fran Blinebury and SI.com’s Zach Lowe.

LISTEN HERE:


As always, we welcome your feedback. You can follow the entire crew, including the Hang Time Podcast, co-hosts Lang Whitaker of SLAM Magazine and Sekou Smith of NBA.com, as well as our superproducer Micah Hart of NBA.com’s All Ball Blog and the best engineer in the business, Jarrell “I Heart Peyton Manning” Wall.

– To download the podcast, click here. To subscribe via iTunes, click here, or get the xml feed if you want to subscribe some other, less iTunes-y way.

Hang Time Podcast (Episode 81) With Sam Amick of SI.com

HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS – With seasons on the line in the Eastern and Western conference finals, the draft lottery just hours away and coaching and front office searches going on around the league, things couldn’t be busier in the NBA.

That’s why we tracked down one of the best newshounds in the business, good friend of the program Sam Amick of SI.com, to help us sort through all of the mess.

We talk Dwight Howard, Vinny Del Negro, Anthony Davis, the Trail Blazers’ general manager search, Thunder, Spurs, Heat, Celtics and a whole lot more in Episode 81 of the Hang Time Podcast.

We’re doing our best not to get ahead of ourselves where the playoffs are concerned, but that Spurs-Heat matchup in The Finals is closer to reality than ever with the Spurs up 2-0 on the Thunder in the Western Conference finals and the Heat hours away from the chance to do same against the Celtics in the Eastern Conference finals.

Dive into that and more on Episode 81 of the Hang Time Podcast:

LISTEN HERE:


As always, we welcome your feedback. You can follow the entire crew, including the Hang Time Podcast, co-hosts Lang Whitaker of SLAM Magazine and Sekou Smith of NBA.com, as well as our superproducer Micah Hart of NBA.com’s All Ball Blog and the best engineer in the business, Jarrell “I Heart Peyton Manning” Wall.

– To download the podcast, click here. To subscribe via iTunes, click here, or get the xml feed if you want to subscribe some other, less iTunes-y way.

Trail Blazers Trade Chatter On Fire





HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS – Both Jamal Crawford and Raymond Felton have been here before during their careers. So the roller coaster ride that is the NBA trade deadline rumor mill should be nothing new to the Portland Trail Blazers’ veteran guards.

With the March 15 trade deadline looming and the Trail Blazers stuck in neutral, losers of three in a row and currently on the outside looking at the Western Conference playoff picture, the speculation is that either one or both of them could be moved by the deadline.

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D-Will Puts It In Overdrive For 57!





HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS – We barely got a chance to savor All-Star point guard Rajon Rondo‘s historic performance before another All-Star point guard, Deron Williams, blew the lid off of a star-studded weekend with a career-high and NBA-season high 57-point performance in a win over the Charlotte Bobcats.

In an era that has to be classified as the golden age for NBA point guards, there are any number of supernatural performances that come out way on a weekly basis.

But the 57 points (a franchise record) Williams dropped Sunday night deserve another look. He only took 29 shots to get his points, though he was a perfect 21-for-21 from the free throw line. And he did have seven assists and six rebounds to go along with his points, all done in just 38 minutes of game action.

In a season that could have been lost for Williams, who is headed towards free agency this summer, he is showing off why he is considered one of the top three or four point guards in basketball.

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Hang Time Podcast (Episode 63)

HANG TIME STUDIOS – Eight days of NBA action is all we needed to fire up the engines here at the hideout. Eight days of highlights, heroics and high drama.

And you know whenever there is NBA drama (good and/or bad) to be discussed, we do it on the Hang Time Podcast.

We rounded up a crew of experts to chop it up with us this week.

– Darnell Mayberry of the Oklahoman joined us to break down the Thunder and the latest drama surrounding Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook.

– Chris Mannix of Sports Illustrated dove in during the Ricky Rubio festival, which included us trying to finally settle the debate as to who is really driving the Rubio bandwagon, while also dropping a little Floyd Mayweather Jr.-Manny Pacquiao knowledge on us.

– Tom Ziller of SBNation and Sactown Royalty  helped us close out the show with the latest on Demarcus Cousins and the Sacramento Kings and all the craziness that comes with that mess.

Eight days and we get all this and more. If you have any suggestions or topics you’d like to see us cover as the season rolls along, let us know in the comments or on Twitter.

LISTEN HERE:


As always, we welcome your feedback. You can follow the entire crew, including the Hang Time Podcast, co-hosts Lang Whitaker of SLAM Magazine and Sekou Smith of NBA.com, as well as our super producer Micah Hart of NBA.com’s All Ball Blog.

– To download the podcast, click here. To subscribe via iTunes, click here, or get the xml feed if you want to subscribe some other, less iTunes-y way.

Is The Trade Back On?

– For the latest updates check out: NBA.com’s Free Agent Tracker

HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS — Hold on to your high tops, folks.

Yahoo! Sports is reporting that the previously nixed three-team deal between Lakers, Hornets and Rockets is being discussed again by all parties.

Sam Amick of SI.com confirmed that story, tweeting:

Sources confirm New Orleans is talking Chris Paul deals again. 3-team deal w/ Lakers, Hou might still have hope, but others discussed too.

This helps explain why Lamar Odom reportedly showed up to Lakers’ training camp late, didn’t work out with the team and left without practicing.

Whether or not this deal is full revived remains to be seen, especially after NBA Commissioner David Stern clarified the league’s position earlier with this statement:

“Since the NBA purchased the New Orleans Hornets, final responsibility for significant management decisions lies with the Commissioner’s Office in consultation with team chairman Jac Sperling. All decisions are made on the basis of what is in the best interests of the Hornets. In the case of the trade proposal that was made to the Hornets for Chris Paul, we decided, free from the influence of other NBA owners, that the team was better served with Chris in a Hornets uniform than by the outcome of the terms of that trade.”

Focus your eyes on that last line and notice the words, “that trade.” Maybe the deal was nixed in Thursday night form because Stern or someone else felt like the Hornets didn’t get enough?

We shall see.

Stay tuned …