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Thursday , Nov , 11 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Houston and Portland interested in Kevin Love?

One team that would be an ideal fit for Love, Houston, has explored the possibility to the point of presenting trade scenarios to the Wolves. Those overtures, sources say, have been met with an icy response. Another team to keep an eye on with regard to Love is the Trail Blazers.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: For NBA stars, the Minnesota Timberwolves are Siberia.

Minnesota is cold. The Timberwolves have annual reservations at the league’s draft lottery in New Jersey. And the franchise has never recovered from wasting Kevin Garnett’s golden years.

Make no mistake about it, Kevin Love wants out of Minnesota. He knows their rebuilding efforts are failing. And he knows lottery-pick Ricky Rubio will stay in Europe until he gets a trade.

The Rockets would be an interesting fit. Love could platoon with center Yao Ming and international four-man Luis Scola.

The Blazers would also be interesting. Love is from Lake Oswego, an affluent Portland suburb. However, LaMarcus Aldridge is firmly entrenched at the four-spot. He could clash with Love –like former Timberwolf Al Jefferson.

Bottom line: look for Love to continue lobbying for a trade. Minnesota, also known as Siberia, is no place for an up-and-coming star.

--Oly Sandor.

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Saturday , Oct , 09 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Franchise Falling: Steve Francis arrested at LAX

Former NBA star Steve Francis was arrested Thursday night at Los Angeles International Airport, officials said. Francis was taken into custody about 10 p.m. by airport police for resisting arrest, officials said. He appeared intoxicated and became boisterous at one of the ticket counters, officials said. He was released after posting $10,000 bail early Friday.
 

HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Oh, how The Franchise has fallen.

Steve Francis, a three-time NBA All-Star, is now out the league and catching flack from the law for sipping a little something, something at the Los Angeles International Airport.

Perhaps this is Karma. After all, Francis was a Prima Donna in Vancouver, Houston, and Orlando. His time in New York and Memphis was laughable.

Hopefully, Francis gets it together. He’s only 33. And has the resources to do anything he wants.

--Oly Sandor.

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

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Sunday , Sep , 26 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Dampier considering Houston and Milwaukee?

Erick Dampier is considering Houston and Milwaukee, two sources close to the situation have told FanHouse.
 
 
HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: He’s cheap insurance. Like Geico. Or All-State.

The Houston Rockets and Milwaukee Bucks both have star centers on the mend, so signing veteran big man Erick Dampier makes sense.

Ideally, Dampier would serve as a bench piece. He'd grab rebounds. Block a few shots. And give Yao Ming and Andrew Bogut a nice break to avoid further injuries.
 
For that reason alone, Dampier's worth a one or two year contract.

But suppose Yao or Bogut gets hurt –something that isn’t out of the realm of possibilities. Dampier could step in, log major minutes, and provide a defensive presence down the middle.

Bottom line: Dampier would fit nicely in Houston or Milwaukee.  

--Oly Sandor.

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Wednesday , Sep , 22 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Rockets offering Kevin Martin to Nuggets for Carmelo Anthony

A team executive tells The New York Times that the Houston Rockets are aggressively pursuing Carmelo Anthony with an offer centered around Kevin Martin and at least one of the draft picks acquired in a trade with the New York Knicks last season.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Finally, the Carmelo Anthony sweepstakes are getting interesting.

The Houston Rockets recently offered Kevin Martin to the Denver Nuggets in exchange for Anthony. Martin is young, talented, and capable. A year ago, he was the face of the rebuilding Sacramento Kings.

The Nuggets have a choice: do they take the Rockets’ offer and cut ties with Anthony or hold out for more compensation?

Chances are, they’ll wait. First year executive Masai Ujiri bought the organization time by initially refusing to move Anthony. He won’t cave now. A deal will likely come right before training camp or during the season.

Something has to happen before the trade deadline. The Nuggets can’t let Anthony hit free agency because the club gets nothing back when he signs elsewhere.

So the offers for Anthony are heating up. The Nuggets will still take their time, though.

--Oly Sandor.

Got thoughts? Well, get at HoopsVibe News in the comment box below. 
 
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Sunday , Sep , 19 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

La La Vasquez on ‘Melo’s future: ‘let’s just see how this plays out’

"I still live there," she said. "There’s so much speculation out there. We did (the) George Lopez (Show) two days ago, and Melo made it clear: He’s still a Denver Nugget. So no matter what you might hear or speculate, he is a Denver Nugget. He’s been committed to that team and that city for seven years now. You’ve got to cut him a little bit of slack. He hasn’t made a move yet.

"As of now, the plans are to report back to Denver for training camp. So let’s just see how this plays out."

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: La La Vasquez is right. Her husband’s situation with the Denver Nuggets has become comical.

For months, the press, fans, players, and GMs have speculated on where Carmelo Anthony will get traded. It’s a hot topic because the star forward can opt-out of his contract next July and become an unrestricted free agent.

The speculation is endless. One day, Anthony is getting dealt to the New York Knicks. The next day, the Houston Rockets, Los Angeles Clippers, and/or New Jersey Nets are the frontrunners.

The Knicks and Nets do have two distinct advantages over the competition. 

Vasquez, a former MTV host, hails from Brooklyn. Although unlikely to admit it, she’d prefer her husband ends up in the greater New York area, so she can continue her entertainment career and be near family.

This may be what pushes Anthony aways from Denver.

--O. Sandor.

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

Is Carmelo Anthony worth the trouble?
Saturday , Sep , 04 , 2010 J.N.

Is Carmelo Anthony worth the trouble?

Denver, what are you doing? Why is he still on the team? Trade him already. He’s still there? Look. I understand that people are trying to team up with others to win. That is fine. Whatever. The people of Denver should not have to put up with a whiny person putting bounties on porn stars via Twitter on someone like Kat Stacks. That is not a class act. Then he goes around and says that his Twitter was hacked. Come on, man! Stop playing!

Read More
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Friday , Aug , 27 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Mission Impossible: Can Denver get equal value for Carmelo Anthony?

According to Yahoo! Sports, the Nuggets look ready to part ways with Carmelo Anthony who has made it clear he wants out of Denver. Anthony's camp has advised the Nuggets to deal the superstar forward since he plans to leave as a free agent next summer.

The relationship has become contentious, with Anthony's representatives making heavy-handed demands and Stan Kroenke responding in kind. "It’s almost a given they’re going to move him," said a team executive who has talked with both the Nuggets and Anthony’s agents.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: The Carmelo Anthony saga has hit the Denver Nuggets at an inopportune time.

George Karl, the coach, is battling cancer, so his future is uncertain. Masai Ujiri, the GM, is brand spanking new. The Kroenke family, the owners, are shuffling who oversees the various holdings in their empire, which includes the basketball team.

The Nuggets are in flux. Anthony - or any superstar - wouldn't sign a multi-year extension under such dire circumstances

The only thing harder than re-signing Anthony: getting equal value in a trade.

Consider Ujiri's predicament. He’s new. He has no leverage since Anthony can bolt as a free agent in July. Opposing GMs will likely lowball the former Raptors’ executive. And it’s never easy to get fair compensation when moving a superstar.  

Help will also be limited. Karl is trying to get healthy, while the Kroenke clan are preoccupied with buying the NFL’s St. Louis Rams.

At least, the Nuggets have decided to trade Anthony. However, the hard part, the actual deal, is just starting.

--Oly Sandor.

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Wednesday , Aug , 25 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Anthony’s ‘heart’ says Denver, head says Houston?

Another league source said Anthony, "in his heart," would like to stay in Denver but has lost faith in the team's direction.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call:
This is just the latest evidence superstar Carmelo Anthony will leave the Denver Nuggets. One way or another, he’s gone.

After seven years in Denver he’s developed emotional ties to the city, organization, and state, but the future is bleak.

For instance: point guard Chauncey Billups, while still effective, is aging; Coach George Karl’s future is uncertain due to his battle with cancer; Ty Lawson aside, there’s a lack of young talent; and there’s not even an executive to right this sinking ship because Phoenix's David Griffin turned down the GM job.

While Anthony’s heart is saying Denver, his head is saying Houston.

--Oly Sandor.

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Tuesday , Aug , 24 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Carmelo Anthony prefers Houston over New York

Anthony has hesitated to sign a three-year, $65 million extension and expressed intrigue with opting out of his contract next summer to become a free agent. Despite significant speculation the New York Knicks are the team that Anthony would most likely want to join, two sources close to him insisted the Knicks have been overstated as an object of his desire. Privately, Anthony has expressed more enthusiasm over joining the Houston Rockets than the Knicks, sources said.

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HoopsVibe's Very Quick Call: For Carmelo Anthony, it's not all about New York.

Recent reports indicate Anthony is lobbying for a trade to the Houston Rockets, which would leave the Knicks in the cold. 

This is a surprise, but not a shock.

The Knicks lack the parts to trade for Anthony, so team and player would have to link up in July when the superstar hits free agency.

This may be too great a risk for Anthony, especially with a three-year, $65 million offer on the table from the Denver Nuggets. The Collective Bargaining Agreement expires next summer, and a new CBA would likely reduce the salary Anthony could earn as a free agent.

The star is trying to protect his earning power by engineering a sign-and-trade. And it explains why Anthony is considering taking the Nuggets' money and heading south to the Rockets.

The Rockets possess the assets to trade for Anthony and can still provide a solid supporting cast. He'd also remain in the Western Conference, away from the Boston Celtics' veterans, the Orlando Magic's Dwight Howard, and the Miami Heat's Three Kings.

Bottom line: Anthony isn't sleeping on Houston. Neither should we.    

--Oly Sandor.

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Wednesday , Aug , 18 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Do the Denver Nuggets have to trade Carmelo Anthony?

If the Rockets or Nets can present an offer that is agreeable to the Nuggets, Carmelo Anthony is open to being traded to, and signing a long-term extension with, one of these two clubs. The story was reported by Chris Mannix of Sports Illustrated, citing multiple league sources familiar with the situation.

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HoopsVibe's Very Quick Call: If Carmelo Anthony wanted to stay with the Denver Nuggets, he would've taken their three-year, $65 million contract offer.

This thing would've been signed, sealed, and delivered long ago. There's no deal and the speculation is hitting fever pitch.

After all, reports indicate Anthony has zero intention of re-upping with Denver. Instead, he wants to opt-out of his contract next July, hit free agency, and pick his new home.

So the Nuggets have two options. First, they can ignore the headlines, hope the seemingly inevitable doesn't occur, and pray that Anthony re-signs.

This is unlikely, and will result in Anthony's pending free agency becoming such a distraction the season will be compromised. Then he'll leave.

Second, they can accept the inevitable and trade him for a new cast of players to surround star point guard Chauncey Billups. The list of suitors for Anthony reportedly includes the Houston Rockets, New Jersey Nets, New York Knicks, and Orlando Magic.

The Nuggets should be able to find a deal to their liking. In fact, it seems they don't have much choice.

--Oly Sandor.

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Sunday , Aug , 15 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Did Trevor Ariza and Aaron Brooks clash in Houston?

Trevor Ariza was traded to the Hornets on Wednesday as part of a four-team trade.His departure may help team chemistry, as Ariza reportedly had a 'troubled relationship' with Aaron Brooks.

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HoopsVibe's Very Quick Call: The Houston Rockets created cap space and a starting position for scorer Kevin Martin, but this may not be the reason Trevor Ariza was traded.
 
Apparently, Ariza and Aaron Brooks had issues, so the Rockets dealt their blue-collar swing to preserve chemistry.
 
Fair enough.
 
Coach Rick Adelman's defensive system depends on effort and trust. Players have to work together. Players have to believe in each other. Players have to put the team first.
 
Ariza and Brooks' issues could have compromised Adelman's entire scheme. So somebody had to go. Brooks is a speedy point guard, while Martin and the inflated payroll made Ariza expendable.
 
The club has done this before. Last year, Tracy McGrady was paid to stay home because his comeback was alienating teammates and coaches. Eventually, he was shipped to the New York Knicks.
 
The Rockets are hoping their team-first approach with Ariza and McGrady is rewarded with playoff success.
 
--Oly Sandor.
 
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Wednesday , Aug , 11 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Indiana Pacers win, New Orleans Hornets lose four-team, five player trade

Four NBA teams have agreed to a five-player trade that will send Trevor Ariza to the New Orlean Hornets and Darren Collison to the Indiana Pacers, two league sources said.

In the proposed deal, the Houston Rockets will send Ariza to the Hornets, who in turn will send Collison and James Posey to the Pacers. The Pacers will send Troy Murphy to the New Jersey Nets. And the Nets will send Courtney Lee to the Rockets.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Four teams with different agendas have connected for an end of summer trade to address their needs before the 2011 season begins.

The winner in this blockbuster is the Indiana Pacers. While they gave up Murphy’s expiring contract and took back an over-the-hill/overpaid Posey, they also got a budding table-setter in Collison.

The second year point guard is lightning quick and excelled when starting for the injured Paul. Look for Collison to star in Indiana next to Danny Granger, Roy Hibbert, and Lance Stephenson.

By swapping Ariza for Lee, the Houston Rockets gain cap relief. This summer, the Rockets spent $87 million to re-sign Luis Scola and Kyle Lowry, while also adding Brad Miller.

Ariza, the Rockets' prize free agent signing of 2009, became expendable after the deadline day acquisition of Kevin Martin from the Sacramento Kings.

Murphy will provide depth and experience to a young New Jersey Nets frontcourt. Best of all, his deal comes off the books at year’s end, which makes him an attractive trading chip.

The loser in this trade has to be the New Orleans Hornets. Yes, Ariza is a fine player. And yes, today they’re a marginally better team.

With this trade, the organization seems to think they have a shot at re-signing Paul. Let’s be real: they have zero shot. None.

Add up small market New Orleans, Hurricane Katrina, the oil spill in the Gulf Coast, and owner George Shinn’s thriftiness and the club can’t generate enough revenue to sign a star-studded supporting cast for Paul.

I know this. You know this. Paul knows this.

He’s gone when his contract expires at the end of 2012. There’s no chance of an extension.

Two summers from now, Paul will walk on the Hornets like Kaiser Soze walked on the police station in The Usual Suspects. Unlike the finish of this classic flick, there will be no suspense or surprise when CP3 leaves.

We know what’s coming. This is expected. Like Lindsay Lohan going to jail. Like the sun rising. Or, in my case being from Vancouver, like the rain falling.

So why not trade Paul and rebuild around Collison?

After all, Ariza, while a fine player, won’t appease Paul. He wants LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, Chris Bosh and Miami. He wants Amar’e Stoudemire and (possibly) Carmelo Anthony in New York.

He doesn't want New Orleans. In fact, he won’t re-up with the Hornets regardless of who they sign or trade for.

Rather than face reality, Hornets management is delusional, aiming to please the snooty super model girlfriend (Paul) who is bidding her time until she can break up with them. 

Instead of waiting for the inevitable, the club should trade Paul while his market value is relatively high, get back draft picks, expiring contracts, and blue-chip prospects, and make Collison the starter.  
 
It seems New Orleans’ blunder is Indiana’s victory.

--Oly Sandor.

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Wednesday , Aug , 11 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Yao Ming missing World Championship to heal for Houston Rockets?

No chance at all he (Yao Ming) puts on a uniform at the Worlds. He’s coming off the injury. He’s slowly getting back into his individual workouts. He won’t be cleared by then. (Robert Donewald, Chinese national team coach) 

HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call:
China’s loss is the Houston Rockets’ gain.

Yao Ming will not suit up for China at the upcoming FIBA World Championship in Turkey because the 7-6 pivot is still recovering from a foot injury which forced him to miss the entire 2010 season.

For China, the loss is obvious. They were manhandled on the low block in an 82-60 loss against an upstart and scrappy Canadian team at the Jack Donahue International Classic in Vancouver, BC.

Bigger, muscular posts will have their way with the slighter Chinese bigs in Turkey.

What`s bad for China is good for Houston. The Rockets re-signed their key free agents this off-season, and are looking forward to a full training camp with scorer Kevin Martin, who was acquired at the trade deadline from the Sacramento Kings.

So Yao is skipping the intense two-week World Championship to try to return for the NBA season.

This is wise. Former Toronto Raptor Jorge Garbajosa compromised his NBA career by going against GM Bryan Colangelo’s wishes and playing for Spain at the European Championship before his ankle had fully healed.

Of course, the stakes are higher for Houston than Toronto. Garbajosa was a useful glue-guy; Yao is an elite center.

Come to think of it, the stakes are high for Yao, too. The perennial All-Star has said he’ll retire if his foot doesn’t heal.

Perhaps, China’s loss is Houston and Yao’s gain.

--Oly Sandor.

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Sunday , Aug , 08 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Are T-Mac and Pistons a fit in 2011?

Tracy McGrady might be playing in the Central Division next season, but not with the team he was anticipating. The Detroit Pistons are seriously weighing whether to sign the two-time scoring champion after McGrady's recent flirtation with the Chicago Bulls, according to sources with knowledge of Detroit's thinking.

DraftExpress.com's Jonathan Givony reported earlier Saturday that the Pistons have already committed to sign McGrady to a one-year deal at the league's $1.35 million veteran minimum, but one source close to the situation told ESPN.com that Pistons officials were "taking the weekend" to discuss the move.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Will ‘T-Mac’ spend 2011 in Motown?

Currently, there are conflicting reports on the World Wide Web as to the Detroit Pistons’ interest in former superstar Tracy McGrady.

Some reports claim he’s already a Piston. Other reports claim the club only had a 'discussion' about signing him.

Bottom line: this should happen. It’s a fit for the team and player.

The Pistons failed to qualify for the playoffs in 2010, and – as currently constructed - they stand zero chance of qualifying in the revamped Eastern Conference in 2011.

They need to rebuild, but must field a team in the interim. McGrady’s name and previous life as a superstar will keep things somewhat interesting at The Palace in Auburn Hills.

Meanwhile, the mediocre Pistons are ideal for McGrady. He’ll get the shots, minutes, and touches to re-establish his name and prolong his career.

After all, the Houston Rockets told McGrady to take a hike. And the New York Knicks took a pass after providing an end of year audition in 2010.

So the Pistons would get a distraction. And McGrady would get an opportunity. Sounds like a win-win for all involved.

--Oly Sandor.

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Tuesday , Jul , 27 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Yao Ming on his injured foot: `I might choose to call it quits`

Houston Rockets centre Yao Ming is considering quitting basketball after next season if he doesn't fully recover from his lingering foot injury.

In comments to Chinese state media Monday, Yao sounded far from optimistic about his future and also made a rare criticism of China`s national basketball program.

“If the foot injury does not heal next season, ``I might choose to call it quits,” he said.

HoopsVibe's Very Quick Call: Once upon a time, it looked like he wouldn't make it.

Years ago, Yao Ming was a polite, but awkward rookie trying to survive his first NBA season.  Everybody took shots -including TNT broadcasters Charles Barkley and Kenny Smith who believed he'd never score 20 points in a game.

The pundits were wrong. Yao quickly found his way. Today, on-and-off court, he's an international sensation.

When healthy, he’s a top center, a giant with touch and skill. Off-court, he helped the league succeed in the lucrative Chinese market. Thanks to Yao, the NBA is now a global brand.

Hopefully, he makes a comeback. His return would turn the Houston Rockets into a highly competitive squad in the Western Conference.

Whatever happens, his legacy, in America and at home, is complete. Yao has certainly made it.

--Oly Sandor.

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Saturday , Jul , 24 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Derrick Rose on Chicago signing T-Mac: ‘he’ll help us’

I think that if he comes along he can help our team," Rose said Friday. "A player like him, with his experience and how he plays, I think he'll help us."

McGrady's effectiveness will depend on his left knee. He had microfracture surgery about a year and a half ago.


HoopsVibe's Very Quick Call: Derrick Rose is reminiscing on the old 'T-Mac'.

Yes, Tracy McGrady was once a superstar. His length, athleticism, and skill-set made him an All-NBA scorer for the Orlando Magic and Houston Rockets.

Age, injury, and ego have ruined him.

Today, McGrady is past-his-prime. He's on the other side of thirty. His always brittle body has endured micro fracture surgery. Yet, he still demands first-option minutes, shots, and touches.

After missing nine months with knee problems, McGrady's desire for a significant role was an issue with the Houston Rockets last year.

So the club paid him to disappear, eventually trading their former franchise player to the New York Knicks at the trade deadline.

McGrady, of course, refused to change for the Knicks. Instead of using his length and basketball IQ to re-brand himself as a defender and facilitator, he tried being a scorer –and failed.

Despite falling short in free agency, New York has no interest in re-signing him this summer.

McGrady could help the Chicago Bulls –if he accepted a role. The swing would be an ideal sixth-man, serving as a second-unit game-changer on both ends of the floor.

Problem is, McGrady won’t defer. Much like Allen Iverson with the Memphis Grizzlies, he wants to start. Not come off the bench.

And much like Iverson with the Grizzlies, he still wants star treatment. Not blend with point guard Rose and post scorer Carlos Boozer.

This is why Rose reminiscing is dangerous. His Bulls should pass on McGrady.

--Oly Sandor.

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Friday , Jul , 23 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Is Matt Barnes the Lakers` new Ron Artest?

The Los Angeles Lakers have signed free agent forward Matt Barnes, it was announced today by General Manager Mitch Kupchak. Per team policy terms of the contract were not released.

Barnes, a seven-year NBA veteran, appeared in 81 games (58 starts) last season with Orlando, averaging 8.8 points, 5.5 rebounds and 1.7 assists in 25.9 minutes while posting five double-doubles and leading the Magic in scoring six times, in rebounds on four occasions and in assists twice.


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HoopsVibe`s Very Quick Call: If you want to join the two-time defending champion Los Angeles Lakers, challenge them.

Two years ago, Ron Artest - then the star of the Houston Rockets – sparred with Kobe Bryant and the Lakers in a classic Western Conference Semi-Final.

The Lakers prevailed in the series; however, Artest was the real winner, catching the eye of his foe and becoming a friend the following off-season when he inked a free agent pact with the purple-and-gold.

This year, Ron-Ron played a major role in the Lakers capturing their second consecutive NBA Title, and became a star with shout-outs to Queensbridge and his psychiatrist.

Flashback to the 2010 regular season, and Matt Barnes was a thorn in the Lakers` side. He battled. He defended. He talked smacked -declaring viral jihad against Lamar Odom, telling the forward on twitter he was going to put his child’s diaper in his mouth.

Naturally, Barnes signed with the Lakers this summer. Frankly, he’s perfect. The tough guy defends, hits the three, and, because he took a reduced salary, will keep the Lakers motivated in their quest for a third consecutive championship.

So Barnes got what he wanted. The defending champions got better. Sounds like the start of a beautiful friendship, which could end with a championship in June of 2011.

--Oly Sandor.

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Thursday , Jul , 22 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Desperate T-Mac taking physical for desperate Clippers

Tracy McGrady underwent a physical with the Clippers on Tuesday and was scheduled to work out for the team on Wednesday. It was reported last week that McGrady would work out for the Clippers on Tuesday.

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HoopsVibe's Very Quick Call: Instead of developing their young pieces, the Los Angeles Clippers are clinging to the hope that Tracy McGrady can help.
 
He can't.
 
McGrady isn't T-Mac. He hasn't been for years. The Houston Rockets, who didn't even make the playoffs in 2010, couldn't get rid of him fast enough. 
 
The New York Knicks acquired him for one reason: his expiring contract. And despite striking out on most free agents this summer, the Knicks had zero interest in re-signing McGrady.
 
Yet, the Clippers - the league's perpetual laughingstock - are flirting with the former All-Star.
 
It doesn't matter that he was brittle and a shade of his former self before microfracture surgery. It doesn't matter that his defense is now non-existent. It doesn't matter that his demand for touches, shots, and minutes would stunt the development of their young players.    
 
Los Angeles' other team is desperate. So is McGrady. Sounds like a match made in heaven.
 
--Oly Sandor
 
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Friday , Jul , 16 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Houston Rockets sign Luis Scola to five year, $47 million contract

The Rockets have agreed to terms with Luis Scola on a five-year, $47 million contract. Scola was a restricted free agent this summer and Houston was adamant that they would match any offer he received.

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HoopsVibe's Very Quick Call: Open the dictionary, look up underrated, and you'll see a pic' of Houston Rocket Luis Scola.
 
Consider the Argentine forward's achievements: in 2010 he averaged a solid 16 points and 8 rebounds; his intensity gave the Rockets an identity as a blue-collar squad; and he has never missed a game, playing in 246 consecutive contests for Houston.
 
And we haven't even mentioned Scola's international resume. He raises his game when representing Argentina in FIBA competitions.
 
So after the Rockets struck out on free agent power forward Chris Bosh, bringing back Scola was an easy decision. 
 
--Oly Sandor.
 
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Thursday , Jul , 15 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Desperate Clippers considering desperate T-Mac

The Clippers will bring in Tracy McGrady for a workout next week, Neil Olshey confirmed. The market for McGrady has yet to materialize after he had a mixed performance for the Knicks.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: You have your answer to why the Los Angeles Clippers are, well, the Los Angeles Clippers.

Instead of rebuilding through the draft, instead of developing those draft picks by providing legitimate mentors, instead of operating with a sense of sanity and purpose, instead of doing what’s right, they do this.

The Clippers – after striking out on every major free agent, which was as predictable as full time party girl and part time actress Lindsay Lohan ending up in the slammer – are desperate.

They’ve reached out to a desperate, past-his prime veteran. They’ve invited Tracy McGrady for a tryout.

Let’s be real. He’s not that McGrady. He’s not an All-Star. He’s not dominating on offense. And he’s not the guy we once compared to Kobe Bryant.

He hasn’t been for years. So wipe those romanticized memories of T-Mac from your mind.

Face reality: he’s injury prone, especially after coming off micro-fracture surgery; he wasn’t good enough for the Rockets or lowly Knicks; he’s become irrelevant, surviving off his name.

McGrady makes little sense for the Clippers. They must build around their youngsters. Not flirt with a superstar who is hanging on and, if he made the team, would demand first option status.

Of course, these shenanigans are par for the course with the Clippers. And it’s why they’ll always be second fiddle in their city, and a league laughingstock.

--Oly Sandor.

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