NBA News for November 27th, 2008
|Dwight Howard Might Not Defend Dunk Contest Crown
Howard, who won the slam dunk contest on All-Star weekend, dressed up like Superman and "flew" to the hoop to secure the top prize. He seems to be leaning toward resting on his laurels.
"There’s a good saying, ’Quit while you’re ahead,’ " Howard said. "I thought I did a great job at the dunk contest last year. I think everybody liked it. I don’t want to mess that up.
"I could top what I did last year in the dunk contest; I do have a lot of ideas. I’m still hoping to do it but Superman and that whole weekend . . . It opened up so many doors in my life, and it showed my personality for people who didn’t know Dwight Howard."
|Carmelo Anthony Wants to Start in ASG Again
The Nuggets’ Carmelo Anthony was the top West vote-getter at forward for the All-Star Game last season. He’s not bashful about again wanting to start.
"I hope that happens again," Anthony said. "It will be good any time you can get voted for the All-Star Game. . . . It just shows that you got a lot of fans out there."
Anthony could play in a third straight All-Star Game, while teammate Chauncey Billups can make it four straight, his three coming as a reserve with Detroit. But unlike Anthony, the guard is downplaying All-Star hopes.
|Is Homesick Darko Milicic Planning to Return to Europe?
Milicic, who also will be a 2010 free agent, said his change of address could see him returning to Europe.
"I lot of days I think that," Milicic said, "because the only way to be me is in Europe. I don’t want to be a defensive player the rest of my career. It’s not really what I want to do."
"In Europe, I can be a different player with the ball going through me," Milicic said. "Here, you take a shot and you just don’t want to miss. You think too much.
"I want to get my confidence back on the offensive end. I want the ball to go through me so I can have a chance to miss without worrying about it. And I want a chance to make plays. (Europe) has good basketball, and it would be closer to home."
|Is Marcus Camby Trade Bait?
With the Clippers off to a 2-12 start, Camby could become a valuable asset when the NBA trade deadline rolls around in February.
His name surfaced last week when the Clippers made a four-player deal with the New York Knicks, who sent Zach Randolph and Mardy Collins to the West Coast for Tim Thomas and Cuttino Mobley.
Camby remained a Clipper, but 13 years in the NBA have taught him a change of address is only a phone call, text message or e-mail away.
"After the trade went down, I talked with (coach) Mike (Dunleavy), and he said they want me here," Camby said Tuesday in a telephone interview with the Rocky Mountain News. "I still understand the nature of the business. I know, around trade deadline time, probably a lot of contenders will try to look to add me to their team."
|Quentin Richardson Blasts Stephon Marbury
"The way the situation is, I don’t consider him my teammate," Richardson said. "He hasn’t played with us all year. He doesn’t want to play with us. This is the second time. I don’t look at him as a teammate. Teammates don’t do that, regardless what’s going on with the coach. You don’t do that to teammates. We were basically left out there."
"I seen him always saying I haven’t done anything personal to us," said Richardson. "Regardless of whoever he’s trying to stick it to, at the end of the day, we’re being left out there. We’re shorthanded, we’re hurt and people are still playing banged up pretty bad. He’s the furthest thing from my mind now."
|Carlisle: Danny Granger Will Be an All-Star
First came the $60 million deal, next comes an All-Star appearance for Pacers forward Danny Granger, according to Carlisle.
Carlisle coached Granger, the Pacers’ leading scorer, during his first two NBA seasons.
"The deal he just signed is a deal he deserves because he’s stepped up his game every single year," Carlisle said. "He gained my confidence very early as a rookie. He’s going to be an All-Star player. He may be an All-Star this year if he continues at this pace. Their team is going to be good in the East."
|LeBron James: D’Antoni Is an Offensive Mastermind
Squeezed inside a Garden conference room jammed with more than 60 journalists and banks of TV cameras, LeBron James was careful not to express his desire to play for the Knicks, but raved about the Garden and coach Mike D’Antoni, calling him "an offensive mastermind."
James, before facing the Knicks four days after Donnie Walsh cleared cap space in 2010 to potentially sign him, said his relationship grew with D’Antoni during the Summer Olympics in Beijing.
"We got really close," James revealed. "Coach D’Antoni gave me a lot of freedom, he allowed me to play every position I wanted to play; I was the leader of that team, but I was also like the overseer of some offensive plays.