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Thursday , Aug , 18 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: China says no to Kobe, D-Wade, and Dirk Nowitzki

Just hours after Shanxi Zhongyu announced their deal with Kobe, the Chinese basketball league decided not to allow players who have deals with NBA teams to play in CBA. The league lists 108 players who have no deals with NBA; only them can register in CBA.

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HoopsVibe's Very Quick Call: Kobe Bryant, Kevin Durant, Dirk Nowitzki, and Dwyane Wade won't be playing for a Chinese club come fall.

Today, the Chinese Basketball League banned NBA players from signing with Chinese clubs if they have an NBA contract.

NBA free agents can still sign in China; however, getting an opt-out clause to return to America when the lockout ends may be difficult.

In other words: if you sign in China, you stay in China.

This is fair. The government created the Chinese Basketball League to develop talent for the national team, and not to provide leverage for locked-out, millionaire superstars from America.

And now Billy Hunter and the Players Union have a problem. The game's biggest stars have maintained they'll head to China if the owners prolong the lockout with their hardball negotiating tactics.

Such a threat is now meaningless. The money, lifestyle, and branding opportunities aren't as good in Europe. Greece, Portugal, and Spain are also in poor financial shape, so few roster spots will be available.

Hopefully, this development forces the players back to the bargaining table.

--Oly Sandor.

Got thoughts? Well, get at HoopsVibe News in the comment box below.    

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Monday , Aug , 15 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Chris Bosh on The Decision: ‘We all Make Mistakes’

Looking back on last year’s free agency and “The Decision,” do you look back and think it could have been done differently or do you just own up to it? Chris Bosh: “I say you own up to it. We all make mistakes. I think anybody would be kidding themselves if they thought they were perfect at anything.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call:
So, Chris Bosh believes LeBron James made a mistake with The Decision.

Well, left-handed power forwards in glass houses shouldn`t throw stones, right Bosh?

In an interview, Bosh indirectly said James slipped up last summer by announcing on ESPN he was ‘taking his talent to South Beach’ and leaving the Cleveland Cavaliers for the Miami Heat.

James admitted as much last year, although he couldn’t, or wouldn’t, say what he’d have done differently.

Equally as damaging to the Heat was Bosh, James, and Dwyane Wade’s collective decision to announce their arrival the way teams celebrate a championship.

The Three Kings held a massive party, and acted more like rock stars than NBA superstars. A sold out stadium of Heat faithful cheered. To be fair, James was the one who predicted multiple championships.

Bosh`s arrogance at this pre-emeptive celebration - along with James and Wade’s surliness -  turned off  fans outside Florida and solidified the Heat’s status as villains.

From that moment the Heat was public enemy number one. And they have yet to get the bulls-eye off their back.

--Oly Sandor.

Got thoughts? Well, get at HoopsVibe News in the comment box below.

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Sunday , Aug , 14 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Heat interested in lighter Eddy Curry?

Curry weighed 350 when he auditioned for Miami in March. Curry intrigues Pat Riley, who might offer him a minimum deal postlockout if he loses another 12 pounds or so. His skills “are there, no question,” Grover said.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Eddy Curry could soon become Pat Riley’s Greatest Reclamation Project.

Reports indicate Curry has dropped close to 40 pounds and, if his waist line continues to shrink, he may sign with the Miami Heat for the minimum when the lockout ends.

This is rather remarkable, especially when considering how low the skilled big had sunk.

Curry made $31 million to play in 30 games over the last three seasons. He blew most of that $31 million and, reportedly, took out high-interest loans from dubious characters. And then there was this.

Of course, Curry might not be best for South Beach. He was a finesse-five for the New York Knicks and Chicago Bulls, and the Heat need a defensive-minded banger down low.

Still, Curry won’t cost much, so, perhaps, he’s worth the risk -as it will appease the people behind Chris Bosh, LeBron James, and Dwyane Wade.

Move over Rafer Alston, Derek Anderson, Ike Austin. Smush Parker, Antoine Walker, and all others. Eddy Curry may soon be coming. You’ll have competition for Riles’ Greatest Reclamation Project.

--Oly Sandor.

Got thoughts? Well, get at HoopsVibe News in the comment box below.

 

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Monday , Aug , 08 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Miami looking at Michael Redd?

If the Heat cannot sign preferred choices Shane Battier, Grant Hill or Tayshaun Prince postlockout, Miami will consider Michael Redd.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Is he healthy? Is he willing?

In theory, Michael Redd could absolutely help the Eastern Conference champion Miami Heat win an NBA Title.

For years, Redd was a prolific scorer with the Milwaukee Bucks, killing opponents with his deadly outside range.

The left-handed gunner has the skill-set to punish defenses for cheating on Chris Bosh, LeBron James, and Dwyane Wade.  

Of course, health matters. In the last two seasons, Redd has played in just 28 games, and doesn’t resemble the perimeter threat that terrorized opposing defenses.

Redd's goal may be to re-establish his reputation as a star rather than support another team's stars -like Bosh, James, and Wade in Miami.

If healthy and willing, Redd would help the Heat. A contender can never have enough shooting or depth.

--Oly Sandor.


Got thoughts? Well, get at HoopsVibe News in the comment box below.

 

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Sunday , Aug , 07 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Heat interested in McGrady –but not T-Mac?

If the Heat cannot sign preferred choices Shane Battier, Grant Hill or Tayshaun Prince postlockout, Miami will consider Michael Redd and Tracy McGrady, among others.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Would the ‘Three Kings’ welcome a king turned pawn in Tracy McGrady to South Beach?  

Well, the Miami Heat may have interest in McGrady, but only if - and this is a massive if - he agrees to a supporting role next to Chris Bosh, LeBron James, and Dwyane Wade.

The former All-Star would have to accept that the ‘T-Mac’ era is done and become the player he was at the start of his career with the Toronto Raptors.

Up north he used athleticism, length, and quickness to complement Vince Carter, who was then the league’s fastest rising superstar.

Back then McGrady defended any and every situation. He locked opponents down; he helped teammates; and he pressed and trapped in the open court.

McGrady also stuffed the stat-sheet. He collected assists, rebounds, and steals; doing the all-important little things to help right the Raptors' fortunes.

Finally, McGrady can’t be ‘That Guy’. He can’t be the veteran malcontent that complained and bragged in Orlando and Houston, and was partly responsible for sabotaging Detroit’s 2010-11 season.

If he’s humble, if he’s hungry, and if he takes another contract for the minimum, then McGrady may land in Miami when the lockout ends.

The alternative is to keep clinging to the ‘T-Mac’ identity and finish his career playing meaningless basketball.

--Oly Sandor.

Got thoughts? Well, get at HoopsVibe News in the comment box below.

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Saturday , Aug , 06 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: No $2 million per month Chinese offer for Dwyane Wade?

“Dwyane Wade’s agent said Friday his client has received no offers nor has had any discussions with professional teams from China, but he wouldn’t rule out the possibility of that scenario changing. ‘If offers are made down the road, will they be looked at? Absolutely,’ agent Henry Thomas told ESPN.com on Friday. The Chengdu Daily reported that Zhejiang Guangsha was offering Wade $2 million per month to play next season in the Chinese Basketball Association, a report that was later denied by a team official.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: China makes the most sense for a temporarily out-of-work NBA superstar.

After all, China is flush with cash because of their strong economy. And with a billion people, it would provide opportunities to spread the superstar’s brand.

However, the greatest reason may be timing. The season doesn’t start in China until December, which would allow the superstar an extended break, while hedging his bets on when the NBA season starts.

Conversely, Europe is broke, the branding opportunities are limited, and training camp for the long season will soon be opening.

So Dwyane Wade, like most big-ticket American stars, will play in China or rest until the owners and union can find common ground on a new Collective Bargaining Agreement.

Forget the $2 million per month salary, Wade has yet to receive a formal offer of any kind from a Chinese side.

That doesn't mean it isn't coming, though.

These clubs need to identify sponsors to help finance big-ticket offers and are waiting to see what happens with negotiations between Commissioner David Stern and Union Boss Billy Hunter.  

--Oly Sandor.

Will Wade stay or go? Well, get at HoopsVibe News with thoughts in the comment box below.

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Saturday , Aug , 06 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Magic Johnson: Dream Team better than Redeem Team

"When you think about the Olympics and the Dream Team, I have to throw it to you," Johnson said. "Kobe [Bryant] and them won by 22 points. Ehh, 22 points? We won by an average of 44 points. So when they want to step up to that, you tell them we'll be waiting on them."

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Michael, Magic, and Larry or Kobe, LeBron, and D-Wade?

It's a tough question, however, most fans assume the 1992 'Dream Team' that cruised to gold in Barcelona, Spain was the greatest team ever.

Magic Johnson, the point guard for the first American side that allowed professionals to participate in the Olympics, has no problem saying so.

Johnson recently said that the ‘92 squad would handle the 2008 squad, known as 'Redeem Team', that captured gold at the Beijing Olympics in China.

Perhaps.

I don’t buy Johnson’s argument about point differential, though. The former Laker believes the 92 squad’s wide margin of victory solidifies their status as the greatest ever.

However, I do believe the ‘92 squad trumps the ‘08 squad because they handled a terrifically talented and inspired Croatian team in the gold medal game.

--Oly Sandor.

Dream Team or Redeem Team? Well, get at HoopsVibe News with thoughts in the comment box below.

 

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Wednesday , Aug , 03 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Blake Griffin on lockout: ‘My first three seasons, I could play 82 games’

"I haven't stopped working out really since May," Griffin said. "It's been every day, sneaking it in whenever I can." Griffin says it's frustrating for him to think that the NBA games may be interrupted after his first season playing in the league. Griffin missed all of the 2009-10 season with a broken kneecap after he had been the No. 1 draft pick out of Oklahoma. "Now my first three seasons, I could play 82 games," Griffin said. "So, we'll see what happens."

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Last year was overwhelmingly positive for the NBA.
 
The sporting world was galvanized by Chris Bosh, Dwyane Wade, and LeBron James joining forces and becoming the ‘Heatles’ in Miami.

Dirk Nowitzki and Jason Kidd’s hard work was rewarded with an NBA championship, guaranteeing both immediate entry into the Hall of Fame when they retire.

Derrick Rose won the MVP award, leading the Chicago Bulls to the league’s best regular season record and a place in the Eastern Conference Finals.

Kevin Durant and the Oklahoma City Thunder took another step winning two playoff series before falling to Nowitzki and Kidd’s Dallas Mavericks in the Western Conference Finals.

The Memphis Grizzlies made the playoffs and upset the San Antonio Spurs. After years of futility, the Indiana Pacers and Philadelphia 76ers were relevant and entertaining.

There are other storylines I’m missing.

For instance, high on this list is the emergence of Blake Griffin, whose aerial antics reminded the world there’s a professional basketball squad in Los Angeles not called the Lakers.

(And this squad, the Clippers, can compete and delight despite being owned by the twisted and incompetent Donald Sterling.)

Suppose there’s a lockout. One that wipes out the entire season. Griffin, who missed 2009 with injury, will have played just eighty-two games in his first three seasons.

Fans would have to wait a year to see Griffin assault the rim. Fans would have to wonder what Griffin would do to defend his crown at the 2012 Slam Dunk Contest. And fans, the purists, would have to wait a year to see Griffin’s above average passing and skill-set develop.

This is tragic. And just another thing Commissioner David Stern, the owners, Union Head Billy Hunter, and the players are risking with their posturing and rhetoric.

I hope they know what they’re doing. Griffin missing another year should be a last resort.

--Oly Sandor.


Got thoughts? Well, get at HoopsVibe News in the comment box below.

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Friday , Jul , 29 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Kevin Love: Players happy Mavericks beat LeBron, Wade and Heat

During his interview, the Minnesota Timberwolves forward (Kevin Love) was asked, “Did guys around the league enjoy the fact that the Heat didn’t win the championship?” You bet, Love responded. “Oh yeah, great amount of joy out of it,” he said. “Plus, for me, they say nice guys, good guys finish last. But Dallas, they just had a slew of great guys and veterans on their team that made for just a great team. “It wasn’t just two, three, four guys on the team, like Miami I kind of felt it was. “Around the league, it was kind of a consensus that guys were happy.”

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: It really was the Miami Heat against the world in last year’s NBA Finals.

Literally.

Most fans were cheering for the Dallas Mavericks. Most media were secretly - or not so secretly- rooting for Team Cuban, too. And, no surprise here, so were most players.

In fact, Minnesota Timberwolves post Kevin Love claims the majority of players felt 'joy' when the Heat lost. The rebounding champion’s comments show that even the Heat's peers, the players, view them as villains.

An interesting conclusion can be drawn from Love’s comments: basketball purists appreciated the Mavs. They appreciated their balance and precise sets, which was in stark contrast to the Heat’s steady diet of ‘iso’ plays for LeBron James and Dwyane Wade.

Love's right to suggest the Heat must develop into more of a team to win a championship as well as the support of fans and players.

--Oly Sandor.

Got thoughts? Well, get at HoopsVibe News in the comment box below.
2003 NBA Draft class: Most Overrated?
Wednesday , Jul , 27 , 2011 J.N.

2003 NBA Draft class: Most Overrated?

This is the truth right now; the 2003 NBA Draft class is shaping up to be the most overrated draft class of all time. It’s been 8 years going until the 9th year for the group yet only one superstar won a ring (Dwyane Wade), the other rode the coat tails of the big three  to get one (Kendrick Perkins), and the last one got a ring for doing nothing (Darko). These guys had a lot of hype leading up to the draft especially LeBron James and Carmelo Anthony. 4 years into their careers and people were claiming that they had the potential to be the best class ever surpassing the God-like 1984 class and 1996 class. 

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Wednesday , Jul , 27 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Kevin Love on NBA.com and lockout: ‘it’s silly’

"They took everything off," Love told The Post. "I laughed, but it's not funny. You take everyone off? You go on our website and it's the dancers and Crutch our mascot. I think it's cool for the charity events, but not using any of the players, it's silly. Let's get this thing resolved and play basketball. It's disheartening to fans and to us. Let's get it figured out.''

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Last year Kevin Love looked like the second-coming of Charles Barkley with his work on the backboard.

This summer Love sounds like the second-coming of ‘Chuck’ with his candour and tell-it-like-it-is nature.

The Minnesota Timberwolves power forward recently told the New York Post the NBA looks ridiculous for pulling players off league and team websites, and urged the parties to solve the lockout.

Love is right: NBA.com is comical. Commissioner David Stern and the owners look petty for only having cheerleaders/mascots on-line, and their negotiating ploys have often been unreasonable.

Here’s my question for the players: what took so long? Why is a promising 22-year old playing in tiny Minnesota left to tell Stern and union boss Billy Hunter to find solutions?

Where are the crème de la crème of the league like Kobe Bryant, LeBron James, Dirk Nowitzki, Dwyane Wade and others?  Well, they're flirting with teams in Europe. Or pulling in six-figure appearance fees for a night in Asia.

Right now, there’s little chance the NBA opens in November -especially if Love, a promising player in a backwater market, is left to pressure the disputing factions.

Hopefully, others follow Love’s lead.

--Oly Sandor.

Got thoughts? Well, get at HoopsVibe News in the comment box below.
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Tuesday , Jul , 26 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Dwight Howard would ‘Never’ join LeBron, D-Wade, Bosh, and Heat

Seems that a guy like Dwight Howard, nearly 7-feet tall and answering to "Superman," would be a perfect fit at Comic-Con, where he talked about both his budding career as a voice over actor and his basketball future. What about the Lakers? "That's everybody's question," he told the "Kick" audience. "I am wearing purple ... but that's Rock's outfit." The Heat? "Never."

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: It would be like the Greasers combining forces with the Socs', or the Capulets breaking bread with the Montagues, or Paris Hilton ‘re-friending’ Kim Kardashian.

Or, like a want-to-be-superhero telling the Comic-Con masses he’d never join the villains, the bad guys, the capped-out Miami Heat.

Give Howard credit. He can charm a crowd -even if that crowd spends weekends playing D&D, Call of Duty, and comparing the old Star Wars trilogy to the new Star Wars trilogy.

However, this is bigger than Comic-Con. Howard’s current team, the Orlando Magic, hate the cross-state Heat. They hate Chris Bosh, LeBron James, and Dwyane Wade, known as the 'Three Kings'. And they hate arrogant Heat exec' Pat Riley.

There's little Howard can do. The NBA is locked-out. His Magic will lack the pieces, unless Gilbert Arenas and Hedo Turkoglu rediscover their past form, to topple the Eastern Conference champion Heat.

Howard will opt-out of his contract next July and likely join another superstar. Perhaps something happens with the Lakers -if Jerry Buss falls out of love with Andrew Bynum. Perhaps he links up with Deron Williams and the Nets.

One thing is certain: Howard would 'never' join Miami.

--Oly Sandor.


Got thoughts? Well, get at HoopsVibe News in the comment box below.

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Wednesday , Jul , 20 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

From Rupaul to The ‘Big 2′: Shaq vs. Bosh is very personal

“The Miami Heat, they’ve got a lot of great players, the `Big 2.’ They will be back,” O’Neal said from Louisiana during the broadcast, when discussing the NBA finals and how Dallas was able to beat Miami for the title. “LeBron James is taking a lot of criticism, but I know LeBron very well. He hears everything that everyone is saying, so I think he’s going to come back and have an MVP year this year.

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HoopsVibe's Very Quick Call: As a player, Shaquille O'Neal took personal shots at Chris Bosh –you remember the RuPaul scandal.

Today, Shaq put Bosh on notice that nothing will change now that he's a TNT analyst with Charles Barkley, Kenny Smith, Chris Webber, and host Ernie Johnson.

While on-air as part of NBATV's preview of the 2011-12 schedule, 'The Big Broadcaster' referred to the Miami Heat as having the 'Big 2' of LeBron James and Dwyane Wade.

Of course, the Heat is known for their Big 3 of Bosh, James, and Wade. So it's clear O'Neal was taking another run at the four-man.

Here's the question: why?

O'Neal needs to prove his worth to TNT. So he re-ignited an old beef with Bosh and generated publicity for the show and himself.

O'Neal has issues with other elite posts, too. The master-in-the-middle has battled Dwight Howard over more than the Superman emblem and has gone at Andrew Bynum since he was a teenager.

No doubt about it, Shaq planned today's attack on Bosh. And we, the media and fans, are giving him exactly what he wanted: headlines.

Got thoughts? Well, get at HoopsVibe News in the comment box below.

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Monday , Jul , 18 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Heat wants Shane Battier?

Regardless of whether James Jones re-signs (and there’s mutual interest), we hear forward Shane Battier will be very much on the Heat’s radar after the lockout. The Houston Chronicle, after interviewing Battier, said “don’t be surprised” if he signs with the Heat or Bulls.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: How much improvement is necessary when you’re two games from winning everything?

If you’re the Miami Heat, a lot. It’s championship or broke in South Beach. Eastern Conference banners don't count. Not when your superstar predicts multiple championships at a pre-emptive victory party.

Simply put, the Heat was built to win it all –year after year.

Expect Executive Pat Riley to be active when the lockout ends and free agency opens. The oil-slick has eyes for Shane Battier.

Battier fits for two reasons. First, he’s a terrific role player, capable of spreading the floor with his range and defending premier wings. With Battier, opponents would get punished for helping on Chris Bosh, LeBron James, and Dwyane Wade. And James and Wade would have some choice as to who they matched-up with on defense.

Second, the Heat - right or wrong, fair or not- have a PR problem. Most living outside Florida couldn’t stand the ‘Heatles’. And most living outside Florida cheered when the Dallas Mavericks won the NBA Title.

Enter Battier.

The Duke grad is well-spoken, intelligent, and humble. He communicates like a Fortune 500 CEO and/or politician. His measured, toned-down approach would lessen the day-to-day scrutiny the Heat faces.

So Battier would help on-and-off court. He may be the difference between the Heat winning and losing the championship in 2012 -if there's a season.

--Oly Sandor.

Got thoughts? Well, get at HoopsVibe News in the comment box below.

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Thursday , Jul , 14 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Dwyane Wade on NBA Finals loss to Dallas: ’the sting is there’

Despite a month that has taken him to fashion previews in Italy and France, then to another camp he hosted in his Chicago hometown, Wade said the night of June 12 and that lost feeling still stings.

"The sting is always going to be there when you lose," he said. "Obviously, it was my first time ever losing the Finals. The sting is there, no question about it. I joke with the kids. I said, 'All right, I'm going to make jokes about it. You guys are not going to ask me the question.' Because the first thing, when they ask questions, they want to know stuff. I make sure I shed some light on it in a sense-of-humor type of way, but the sting is there.``

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Dwyane Wade and his Miami Heat must embrace the `sting’ and get humble.

Last year was out-of-hand in South Beach. The Great Free Agent Chase of 2010 and The Decision were offensive. Their pre-emptive victory celebration was highly offensive.

It showed that D-Wade, LeBron, and Bosh thought they’d waltz to the NBA championship and have no issue winning several more.

While their regular season was mixed, the Heat was outplayed and out-classed by the team-first, collectivist Dallas Mavericks in the NBA Finals.

The Three Kings, or whatever else they were calling themselves, had lost. Most were happy about this development, too.

The Heat's arrogance had turned off those outside of Florida. Wade and his running mates were the villains.

So Wade needs to embrace the ‘sting’. He needs to get, and stay, humble. He needs to get in the gym and re-discover the work ethic that won him the 2006 NBA Title.

Forget about the Heat upgrading their supporting cast. New additions will be tough with the stricter Collective Bargaining Agreement.

Instead, Wade must focus on how he can improve. This is the first step towards another championship. And a championship is the only thing that will lessen the ‘sting’ of 2011.

--Oly Sandor.

Got thoughts? Well, get at HoopsVibe News in the comment box below.

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Tuesday , Jul , 12 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Tyson Chandler thinks LeBron is ‘the most scrutinized player of all-time’

Dwain Price: "He has to be the most scrutinized player of all-time." --Mavs center Tyson Chandler, talking about Bron-Bron on ESPN's Sports Nation.

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HoopsVibe's Very Quick Call: It's his fault, though.

Tyson Chandler is right to declare LeBron James the world's most highly scrutinized athlete. However, James, and nobody else, is to blame for this.

After all, The Decision was not a good look. It was an example of how not to handle free agency and what will go wrong when 'your boys' handle your career.

Then there was The Victory Party. After signing James, Chris Bosh, and Dwyane Wade, the Miami Heat threw a pre-emptive championship shindig, complete with all the bells and whistles.

The Three Kings hadn't won a championship. They hadn't even won a game. Such details didn't prevent James from suggesting his Heat would win several championships.

These acts, The Decision and The Victory Party, sealed James' fate. He went from hero to villain faster than any athlete, actor, or musician of recent memory.

James dug his grave. He must now live in it –which means having the masses cheer when his star-studded Heat lose the 2011 NBA Finals to Chandler's Dallas Mavericks. 

There's a solution: James leads the Heat to a championship. Hoisting the Larry O'Brien trophy would silence most, if not all, of his critics.

Most would begrudgingly forgive James for The Decision and The Victory Party. They wouldn't forget but they'd forgive. 

Forgiveness would be the start of James, the world's most scrutinized athlete, rebuilding his image.

--Oly Sandor.

Got thoughts? Well, get at HoopsVibe News in the comment box below.

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Saturday , Jul , 09 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Wade will consider signing in Europe?

We’ve known that the lockout was a possibility for the last couple of years,” he said. “It’s not just something that came overnight. (Williams) didn’t wake up and say, ‘All right, go play in Turkey.’ Obviously, this is something that he felt that if a lockout was to last a long time, ‘I would consider playing.’ It’s because of the game. He wants to play the game, wants to play it at a high level, and if we can’t play in the NBA, he’s going to take that opportunity to try to play somewhere else. Hopefully, we don’t get to that point, but if we do, I’m sure a lot of guys will possibly explore it.”

And Wade made it clear: He could be in that group. "If there’s an opportunity there, I’d consider it,” he said.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Considering and doing is different.

Right now, Dwyane Wade and other NBA stars can talk like they’ll sign overseas with a European club side.

Talk is cheap, however.

Will Wade and the crème de la crème of David Stern’s league uproot their family for a fraction of their NBA salary? And who will pay the insurance on their big-ticket NBA contracts?

Suppose Wade and his NBA brethren work out the particulars and sign abroad. There’s no guarantee they get paid because the best European clubs are in bankrupt nations like Italy, Spain, and Greece. And European owners are known for not honouring contracts.

Wade and others say they’ll consider Europe. They’ll also consider the risks and likely wait for the lockout to end in America.

--Oly Sandor.

Got thoughts? Well, get at HoopsVibe News in the comment box below.

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Wednesday , Jul , 06 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Is Kobe more arrogant than LeBron?

“Kobe is super arrogant but everybody loves him. To me, Kobe is more arrogant (than LeBron James).”

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: You got to love today’s NBA.

Only in this era could a third stringer win a championship and feel he has the ‘juice’ to call out an all-time great.

Isn’t that right Ian Mahinmi?

The Frenchman, who played behind Tyson Chandler and Brendan Haywood on the 2011 world champion Dallas Mavericks, recently declared that Kobe Bryant is the most arrogant player in the NBA.

Forget LeBron. Forget D-Wade. Forget the Three Kings. Forget Carmelo Anthony and Amar’e Stoudemire. According to Mahinmi, it’s Kobe.

This is hardly a surprise. Bryant is supremely confident. Always has been, too.

He was this way when plying his craft as a prep-to-pro star at Lower Merion in Philadelphia.

He was this way when Del Harris sat him as a rookie with the Los Angeles Lakers.

And he was this way when jostling with Shaquille O’Neal and Phil Jackson for lead dog status with the champion Lakers.

Confidence, or arrogance, has made Bryant who he is. He won’t change, either.

Something that has changed: a part-time player on a championship squad calling out a once-in-a-generation superstar.

Scott Hastings never said a thing about Larry Bird, Clyde Drexler, or Magic Johnson when his Detroit Pistons won back-to-back titles. Same with Eric Riley when the Houston Rockets defeated the New York Knicks in the 1994 finals. And Sean Marks was silent when the San Antonio Spurs captured the Larry O’Brien trophy in 2006.

Even Josh Powell, a reserve with the glamorous L.A. Lakers, knew to stay silent when the purple-and-gold were champions in 2009 and 2010.

They knew their role. They knew their place. Mahinmi does not.

To be fair, Mahinmi had a slightly greater impact than the above players, serving as an energy reserve for Rick Carlisle and the Mavs’.

Still, Mahinmi should stay silent. Right now, he, not Bryant, looks arrogant.   

--Oly Sandor.


Got thoughts? Well, get at HoopsVibe News in the comment box below.

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Tuesday , Jul , 05 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Bosh, LeBron, D-Wade, and Heat have most to lose with Lockout?

You’re coming off an NBA Finals where your team fell painfully short of its second world championship, and you have only three more years of guaranteed time with the LeBron James, Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade before their player options come up, giving all three the freedom to head elsewhere if this isn’t working out as planned.

Is this really the time for labor strife to potentially cost you a full season? Isn’t this the worst possible time to consider bonding with these newer, more desperate owners around the league for the sake of shared health? Wouldn’t a potential lost season put a huge dent into this perfect model you essentially have spent four years planning for and building?

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Like De La Soul said, The Stakes is High.

Right now, the Miami Heat has the most to lose if there’s a prolonged work stoppage and a new Collective Bargaining Agreement with a hard cap.

It starts with owner Micky Arison. The billionaire has invested hundreds of millions of dollars on the Three Kings -Chris Bosh, LeBron James, and Dwyane Wade.

The controversial trio is only signed for a guaranteed four years. 2010-11 is in the books. 2011-12 is at risk because of the lockout.

Of course, the entire Heat model is also at risk. Suppose the owners win negotiations. Suppose they implement a hard cap. Suppose they rollback salaries.

Despite what he said publicly, Heat executive Pat Riley may be forced to break up his star trio. And Bosh would be the one to go.

Upgrading the supporting cast will also be a problem. With a top-heavy salary structure, the Heat will have little money to sign a point guard or center. Especially if soft cap loop-holes like the veteran`s minimum and mid-level exception are eliminated. 

Whenever next year begins, the Eastern Conference champions could look different.

--Oly Sandor.

Got thoughts? Well, get at HoopsVibe News in comment box below. 

NBA stars who can possibly reach near MJ level
Tuesday , Jul , 05 , 2011 J.N.

NBA stars who can possibly reach near MJ level

No. This is not an attempt to compare any of these guys to Michael Jordan. Nope. That has been beaten, raped, and pillaged to hell and back. This is more of an examination of the talent today that might have a chance to reach Jordan’s status. They are obviously not him and will not surpass him either. The goal is ridiculous anyway. However, getting close to Jordan is possible. It’s not out of the question. 

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