Familiar names dominating in Chinese Basketball League

Bo Jackson and his representatives instructed the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to not select him in the 1986 NFL Draft. The Buccaneers selected him in the 1986 NFL Draft. Yi Jianlian and his representatives instructed the Milwaukee Bucks to not select him in the 2007 NBA Draft. The Bucks selected him in the 2007 NBA Draft.
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League takes away LeBron’s triple-double (Yahoo Sports)

CLEVELAND (AP) — The NBA has stripped LeBron James of a triple-double.

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NBA Weekly Column: Warriors atop the league

Although the NBA season is still in the early stages, things are heating up. Unlike recent history, the East is competing with the West for bragging rights in labeling the best conference in the league.
Power Six Teams
1. Golden State Warriors(5-1):
Before losing to the Phoenix Suns this Sunday, the Warriors were the lone undefeated team in the league. They even won a battle between two unbeaten teams when they rolled through Houston and took down the Rockets 98-87.
2.  Chicago Bulls(6-2):
Derrick Rose is back from his bad ankle injuries, which only means the Bulls will get ten times better with him on the court. Their defense is darn near impenetrable and the combination of Joakim Noah and Pau Gasol down low is formidable to say the least.
3. Houston Rockets(6-1):
They are 4-0 on the road. Before losing to the Warriors this past Saturday, Houston reeled off  six straight wins…all by double digits!
4.  Memphis Grizzlies(6-1):
This team is for real. The Grizzlies may not be the most exciting team to watch

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NBA Rumors: Latest Buzz on Potential Roster Moves Around the League

While teams like the San Antonio Spurs, Los Angeles Clippers and Cleveland Cavaliers worry about positioning for the NBA playoffs early in the season, others like the Philadelphia 76ers already have their eyes on next year.

However, there are still some rumors revolving around the 76ers early in the 2014-15 campaign because they are required to actually play the games on the schedule. Playing the games on the schedule actually means fielding a roster, even if it’s not competitive.

With that in mind, here is the latest from Philadelphia, as well as a rumor regarding a former Big Ten superstar.

 

Philadelphia 76ers

Tom Moore of Calkins Media passed along an update on the 76ers’ big-man situation:

Philadelphia sits at 0-7 and is fresh off a blowout loss at the hands of the Toronto Raptors on Sunday night. This team is not built to compete this season and would be better off losing every game for draft purposes.

Still, as mentioned, it has to field a deep enough roster to play actual NBA games.

Considering Henry Sims and Nerlens Noel are the only healthy centers on the roster while Joel Embiid recovers from injury, adding another center would bolster the interior depth. Sure, there may not be a lot available at this point of the season, but even a replacement-level center would help take some mileage off Noel’s legs.

The good news given the current roster situation is that it won’t be particularly difficult to find a player to cut.

Eventually, the 76ers could field a roster led by Michael Carter-Williams, Embiid, Noel and Dario Saric, but this will be yet another lost seasonregardless of whatever big man they pull off the free-agency pile at this point of the year. 

Hopefully, the fanbase has impressive patience.

 

Aaron Craft

Sportando’s Orazio Cauchi noted that former Ohio State point guard Aaron Craft could have a new basketball home rather soon.

“According to several sources, Aaron Craft is the main target at PG position for the Partizan Belgrade. Craft spent the training camp with the Golden State Warriors and he has the chance to play in D-League for the Santa Cruz Warriors,” he wrote.

Craft is best known for his time as a Buckeye, where he reached the Sweet 16 three times, the Elite Eight twice and the Final Four once. He was never much of an offensive threat (8.9 points a game in his four-year career), but he was an absolute defensive wizard at the college level.

Craft won the 2013-14 NABC (National Association of Basketball Coaches) Defensive Player of the Year and racked up 337 steals in his career, which is the most in the history of the Big Ten.

It is really no wonder that the Partizan Belgrade are interested in landing a perimeter defender who can keep up with almost any ball-handler on the outside and apply full-court pressure when needed. There could also be room for that type of play at the NBA level if Craft was put in the right situation.

He is capable of coming off the bench and speeding up the game for short spurts with pressure defense and forced turnovers.

Golden State Warriors coach Steve Kerr seemed to think so when he said the following to NBA TV (h/t Bob Baptist of the Columbus Dispatch) during summer league: “Guy’s a baller. He just plays.” 

It looks like Craft may have to turn more heads than just Kerr’s from abroad now if he ever wants to make it in the NBA.

 

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NBA Trade Rumors: Latest Whispers from Around the League

You have probably made a number of trades already in your fantasy basketball league or in NBA 2K15, but there usually aren’t any big-time moves in the opening week or two of an actual NBA season.

That is certainly the case for the 2014-15 campaign, but there are still plenty of rumors circulating around the league.

Two of those trade rumors in particular surround the Los Angeles franchises, as the Clippers are looking for ways to improve a title-contending roster, while the Lakers’ star is caught up in some rumors of his own.

With that in mind, here is a look at some of the latest trade rumors from around the NBA.

 

Kobe Bryant

Frank Isola of the (New York) Daily News passed along an update regarding the possibility of Kobe Bryant getting traded to the New York Knicks:

The Lakers could begin the rebuilding process immediately by removing Bryant’s salary from their cap. The Knicks are one team that has expiring contracts to placate Los Angeles.

“I don’t see it happening,” said one Eastern Conference GM. “I’d put it at minus 20%.”

The same general manager thought about it for a moment and added: “The only way this happens is if Kobe goes to the Lakers and asked to be traded.”

If you take away the fact that Bryant has played with the Lakers his entire career and that the Eastern Conference general manager said it’s not going to happen, this potential trade makes some sense.

A Bryant and Carmelo Anthony pairing would make the Knicks instant playoff contenders in the watered-down Eastern Conference. What’s more, Bryant is familiar with the triangle offense and with Phil Jackson and Derek Fisher from their time in Los Angeles together and would accelerate the learning curve in the Big Apple.

From the Lakers’ perspective, getting rid of Bryant would exponentially increase their chances of landing a top-five draft pick, which is the only way their pick doesn’t go to the Phoenix Suns this season. Considering Steve Nash and Julius Randle are out for the year, Bryant is the only real hope the Lakers have at stringing together any wins.

Interestingly, Isola notes that if Bryant were to become available, the Chicago Bulls and Dallas Mavericks would also be among the teams that take a look at the future Hall of Famer.

Chicago and Dallas are both title contenders on paper, and adding a dynamic star like Bryant would really alter the landscape of the NBA. It would especially help in Chicago, since the Bulls have struggled to score the past couple of years and Derrick Rose’s health is always a concern.

Before everyone gets excited about the prospect of Bryant switching uniforms, it is worth looking at some quotes from the man himself, via Marc J. Spears of Yahoo Sports:

I hear the chatter of Kobe should ask out and he should go and play for a contender in this latter stage of his career. But that’s not what I do. I’m extremely loyal to the Lakers.

I believe in fighting through the tough times as well as enjoying the good times. It’s my responsibility to get us to be the best that we can be. It’s important that we approach that on a day-to-day basis. 

Perhaps he will change his mind when the trade deadline rolls around after a half season of losing.

 

Los Angeles Clippers Looking for a Small Forward

Things are looking a lot better for the other Los Angeles franchise, but there is still room for improvement for the Clippers if they want to compete with the defending champion San Antonio Spurs in the playoffs this season.

Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports made the following statements on The Home Team radio program, via www.kfwbam.com:

“The Clippers have to find a way to get better at small forward. They’re just not good enough there. They’ve scoured the league trying to find a small forward, but I don’t know that they have the assets or players to give up to get that kind of player back in a trade.”

The Clippers have arguably the best point guard in the game in Chris Paul, one of the best overall players in the league in Blake Griffin and an interior force in DeAndre Jordan. They also boast solid backcourt depth with Jamal Crawford and J.J. Redick, and Spencer Hawes is a formidable big man off the bench.

However, there is not a lot of proven or reliable talent outside of Matt Barnes at the small forward position. Hedo Turkoglu is well past his prime, and Chris Douglas-Roberts is not exactly the guy you want to rely on in crunch time against the Spurs in May.

Even Barnes himself is more of a defensive stopper than an offensive threat.

It is really no wonder that Los Angeles is looking at small forwards with that roster. There really aren’t any other holes to fill. 

The Clippers have the pieces to make a run at the title, and the injury situation in Oklahoma City means the Western Conference is wide open behind the Spurs. This could be their best chance to take home the Larry O’Brien Trophy, and another small forward would only make Los Angeles even more dangerous come playoff time.

 

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NBA fans need to see the ‘Every Player In The League’ Tumblr

There are some things that as soon as you see it, you immediately lose your mind. When Phillip Barnett dropped by in the TSFJ e-offices with a gift, I immediately assumed trickery. The man never brings gifts; usually, he only brings his Los Angeles Lakers fandom and San Francisco Giants stress. I have time for […]
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Green Bay named Horizon League preseason favorite

Green Bay favored to repeat as Horizon League champ; Sykes is Player of Year in preseason poll

      
 

 

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UConn call to Little League star prompts complaint

UConn coach Auriemma says unnamed school complained of congratulations call to Mo’Ne Davis

      
 

 

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Indiana, Purdue open league play on New Year’s Eve

Hoosiers, Boilermakers will open Big Ten conference play on New Year’s Eve

      
 

 

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NBA denies that league asked Toronto Raptors to fire Drake

Earlier this week, there was a report by The Globe and Mail which stated that the NBA had offered to drop a $25,000 tampering fine that had been issued to the Toronto Raptors if the team stripped Drake of his official ambassador title. Drake had gotten into some hot water with the league for “recruiting” Kevin Durant during a concert he held over the summer. Now, the NBA has responded to the report by stating that they never broached the subject of asking the Raptors to relieve Drake of his ambassadorship. “As the Raptors’ global ambassador, Drake must follow our anti-tampering rules,” Tim Frank, the league’s senior vice-president of basketball communications, said in an email to The Canadian Press on Wednesday. “At no point did we suggest his title be removed but we were clear that as long as he acted as a representative of the team, he is subject to the league’s rules.” With as much attention as he brings the Raptors (let’s be real, this is the most national coverage that the Rap…

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