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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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Monday , Jul , 18 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Brandon Jennings: ‘It’s time to become an All-Star’

"Next year will be my third year and I need to establish myself as one of the best point guards and one of the best players in the game. It's just trying to get better and better every day. Working with Scott Skiles (before the lockout), getting in the weight room, dedicating the summer to strictly basketball. It's going to be my third year, so it's time to become an all-star."

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HoopsVibe's Very Quick Call: Did it do more harm than good?

Eighteen months ago, Brandon Jennings was the talk of the NBA. His first month in the league was full of highlights, assists, and a 55-point game.

Suddenly, the Milwaukee Bucks were relevant. Expectations soared for Jennings, a high profile point guard who skipped college and played professionally in Italy for one season.

Last year, Jennings got exposed. His shot selection was poor; his finish at the rim weak. Many believed Luke Ridnour, a veteran backup, was better at running the half-court offense.

It was obvious: Jennings got too much too soon. And he didn't know how to respond when defenses adjusted after to his early success.

Jennings deserves credit for checking his ego, setting goals, and putting in work. He also deserved credit for using Scott Skiles, the Bucks` taskmaster coach, as a resource before the lockout.

After all, Skiles is old school. He won’t tell Jennings what he wants to hear. And he'll challenge his young point guard –just not like he did with Shaquille O`Neal so many years ago.

How many 22-year olds would have the maturity to do that? Most would ignore their hard-as-nails sideline boss and hire 'their guy' to serve as personal trainer.

Perhaps Jennings takes a significant step next year. Perhaps not. But it won't be for lack of effort or trying.

--Oly Sandor.

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

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Friday , Jul , 08 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Yao Ming, the bridge between China and NBA, retires

Rockets' Yao Ming has decided to retire from the NBA, league sources tell Y! Sports. He informed the league office within past 48 hours.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Mr. International is done.

Reports indicate that Yao Ming has retired from the NBA due to lingering foot problems. Sadly, the Chinese post barely got off injured-reserve the last few years.

In his prime, Yao could play. The first overall pick in the 2002 draft was a regular at the league’s mid-season classic, the All-Star game. While his Houston Rockets struggled in the playoffs, Yao always stuffed the stat-sheet with scoring averages of 20 points per game.

His legacy will always be China, though. Yao was the main reason the NBA penetrated and profited from the lucrative Chinese market.

Yao's greatest moment may have been an exhibition match between his Rockets and Yi's Milwaukee Bucks. Hundreds of millions of Chinese citizens watched this pre-season contest, confirming Commissioner David Stern's hunch that the league's future was in Asia. 

Other Chinese basketball players will follow Yao to the NBA. And the NBA will follow Yao back to China.

This bridge Yao created between China and the NBA will stand for years to come. His influence and legacy is only just starting.

Oly Sandor.

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

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Friday , Jun , 10 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Yao: ‘I don’t even know if I can play again’

The towering Houston Rockets center, China's most recognizable athlete, told CCTV he could not predict when, or indeed if, he would fully recover from a serious ankle fracture suffered last November."I don't know if I would join some champion team in the future," the China Daily quoted him as saying when asked about leaving a new-look Rockets team. "I don't even know if I can play again."

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: It’s sad if this is the end.

For years, Yao Ming was excellent. He was incredibly skilled and talented, often averaging 20 points and 10 rebounds, the benchmark for elite fives.

However, Yao never took the Rockets deep in the playoffs. His massive stature lead to numerous injuries.

Yao’s greatest contribution will be spreading basketball into the lucrative Chinese market. He was, after all, the league’s first Chinese star. And the world’s most populous nation followed his every move, which was good for David Stern and the suits at league head office.

Tens of millions of Chinese watched a regular season match-up between Yao’s Rockets and Yi’s Bucks. Perhaps half a billion people would watch one of these two in the NBA Finals.

Some of those billions will aspire to play in the NBA. A few may make it. And this will be, in part, because of Yao.

--Oly Sandor.

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

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Sunday , May , 22 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Bucks open to trading Jennings?

Top rumors making the rounds at the NBA Draft Combine in Chicago this week: The Milwaukee Bucks reportedly would be open to listening to offers for guard Brandon Jennings.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Last year, he was a stud. This year, he was a dud.

There are reports suggesting the Milwaukee Bucks would consider dealing young point guard Brandon Jennings.

In 2010, Jennings led a hoops renaissance in Milwaukee. Their jitterbug point guard was a Rookie of the Year candidate. The Bucks, behind a late season push, made the playoffs.

But it all went pear-shaped for player and team in 2011. Jennings, in part because of injury, struggled to recapture his form. The Bucks missed the playoffs.

Has management lost faith in Jennings?

Much depends on Coach Scott Skiles. Skiles, a former point guard, is notoriously tough on his point guards, and may have lost patience with young Jennings.

Management may listen to offers. And Jennings may be dealt for the perfect offer.

The perfect offer is unlikely, though. The NBA is point guard heavy. Teams in the market for a table-setter will wait for July of 2012 when Chris Paul and Deron Williams become free agents, as oppsed to overpaying for Jennings.

Look for the darting left-hander to be in a Bucks uniform when the 2012 season begins.

--Oly Sandor.

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

The top 5 fantasy basketball disappointments (2010-2011 edition)
Friday , Apr , 29 , 2011 J.N.

The top 5 fantasy basketball disappointments (2010-2011 edition)

Everyone should be preoccupied with the playoffs. I’m still here licking my wounds because I finished near the bottom three in my pay league. I had to pay up. I knew I was out after the fourth week of fantasy basketball losing most of the categories. I wasn’t just losing. I was getting blown out. I started looking at my roster, piece by piece. Lessons learned. Here are the guys that I am staying away from.

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Saturday , Mar , 12 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Wolves considering firing Rambis?

As the Timberwolves limp to the 50-loss mark and beyond, it becomes a question of which number will be greater at the end of the season: Minnesota's loss total or Kevin Love's double-double streak, which reached a record 52 Wednesday night. Of far greater certainty is the status of coach Kurt Rambis, who appears to be on his way out after only two seasons.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: The current state of the Minnesota Timberwolves is not Kurt Rambis’ fault.

It’s not Rambis’ fault the Wolves are the one of the NBA’s youngest teams.

It’s not Rambis’ fault the Wolves have one of the league’s lowest payrolls.

It’s not Rambis’ fault Executive David Kahn has given him a wing-heavy roster with one superstar in Kevin Love.

And it’s certainly not Rambis’ fault the Wolves have hedged their bets to Spanish sensation Ricky Rubio, who may or may not join the club two years after being drafted by Kahn in the lottery.

None of that matters, though. The rumor is that the organization is pushing to change the coach. This push is coming because Kahn knows he can’t change the players he accumulated, so he’ll change who sits on his bench.

The Wolves should consider firing Rambis –but only if they are serious about replacing him with a star sideline boss like, say, Mike Brown. Reports indicate they’re looking at an assistant with the Milwaukee Bucks, Kelvin Sampson.

Sampson may eventually turn out to be a good head coach. However, the Wolves need a guy with legitimate experience as an NBA head coach. Not a guy who needs time to learn on the job.

Gambling on a rookie head coach will likely produce the same results of fifty loss seasons and annual reservations at the draft lottery in New Jersey.

And that won’t do.

-Oly Sandor.


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

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Wednesday , Dec , 22 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Best ‘Alley-oop’: Blake Griffin on Minnesota or LaMarcus Aldridge on Milwaukee?

HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: It’s on.

The Los Angeles Clippers’ Blake Griffin and the Portland Trail Blazers’ LaMarcus Aldridge recently set the NBA ablaze with their alley-oops.

Our question is simple: who had the better catch-and-jam?

Do you prefer Blake-Zilla’s aerial antics against those miserable Minnesota Timberwolves? Or, did Aldridge’s poster-job of the Milwaukee Bucks catch your eye?

Watch both clips and get at us in the comment box below with thoughts?

(Blake-Zilla shows no mercy against the Wolves.)

(Aldridge soars against the Bucks.)

--Oly Sandor.

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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.

Got thoughts? Well, get at HoopsVibe in the comment box below.
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Sunday , Aug , 29 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Jerry Stackhouse is ‘ìntrigued about the Miami situation‘

Everybody is kind of intrigued about the Miami situation and seeing if they’re trying to add another veteran to their team. If that happened, I’d be thrilled to be there. I think that would feel like Hall of Fame accreditation to have a guy like Pat Riley come and ask you to be a part of their team.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: The Stack would work in The MIA.

Once again, free agent swingman Jerry Stackhouse is talking publicly about joining the Miami Heat. Hopefully, ‘oil slick’ executive Pat Riley hears the veteran’s not-so-subtle hints and signs him.

After all, Stackhouse provided the Milwaukee Bucks with a boost in the second half of 2010. And the former All-Star would surely be a super-sub behind LeBron James and Dwyane Wade. 

In limited minutes, Stackhouse would score, defend, and provide a mature presence for a team that will be both public enemies and rock stars.

All this for a veteran`s minimum contract. So Riley and the Heat need to make this happen. If not now, perhaps at mid season.

--Oly Sandor.

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

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Thursday , Jul , 22 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Jerry Stackhouse would come cheap for Miami Heat

Free-agent forward Jerry Stackhouse is interested in playing for the Heat.  Stackhouse played well for the Bucks last season.

"When you look at a situation with Miami now and having to try and fill their roster with minimum-type contracts," he said recently on NBA TV, "I would take one of those minimum contracts if they're available."

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HoopsVibe's Very Quick Call: Unlike Penny Hardaway who recently lobbied the Miami Heat for a job, Jerry Stackhouse could contribute. 
 
Last year the veteran swing joined the Milwaukee Bucks at mid-season. Stackhouse - along with John Salmons who was acquired at the trade deadline - changed the Bucks' season by providing much-needed scoring.
 
The former All-Star is still capable, and could thrive as a bench piece supporting Three Kings Chris Bosh, LeBron James, and Dwyane Wade.
 
Best of all, he'd come cheap, and play for the minimum. So what does Heat GM Pat Riley have to lose?
 
--Oly Sandor.
 
Got thoughts? Well, get at HoopsVibe News in the comment box below.
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Sunday , Jul , 18 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Brandon Jennings on Milwaukee: ‘We can be a top four team in the East’

HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: He put it out there.

Second year point guard Brandon Jennings believes his Milwaukee Bucks could finish in the top four in the Eastern Conference.

Jennings – also known as The Gremlin for rocking his, well, unique ‘do – may be overlooking the Boston Celtics, Chicago Bulls, Orlando Magic, and that other team in the state of Florida.

Still, Jennings’ optimism is always appreciated, but is it misdirected?

Watch the clip by clicking the link courtesy of HoopsHype. Then get at us in the comment box on how Milwaukee will do in 2011.

--Oly Sandor.

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Thursday , Jul , 01 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Salmons lands five-year, $39 million pact with Milwaukee

The Bucks are nearing a deal to re-sign guard John Salmons.

A source told FanHouse the deal is done except for a few minor points. Milwaukee general manager John Hammond had told FanHouse very early Thursday morning he had "guarded'' optimism that Salmons would re-sign.

The source said the deal will be for five years for about $39 million.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: He’s a perfect fit.

After all, the Milwaukee Bucks were much improved after acquiring shooting-guard John Salmons from the Chicago Bulls at the trade deadline.

Salmons can score in many ways: he has deep range from the perimeter; can stick the in-between shot; and also gets to the basket.

His knack for scoring and low-key personality helped the surprising Bucks qualify for the playoffs.

And at $8 million per year, an extension was a no-brainer for both Salmons and Milwaukee.

-- O.Sandor.

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

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Thursday , Jul , 01 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Staying put? Gooden signs five-year, $32 million deal with Milwaukee

Drew Gooden has reached agreement on a five-year, $32 million contract with the Milwaukee Bucks, league sources told Yahoo! Sports.

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HoopsVibe's Very Quick Call: Strike while the free agent iron is hot, folks.

Drew Gooden - a well-traveled post who has played for eight teams in eight years - signed with the Milwaukee Bucks on the first day of free agency for slightly above the mid-level exception because he wants a home.

Milwaukee adds depth up front next to budding center Andrew Bogut, and young point guard Brandon Jennings. 

So Gooden, hopefully, gets his security, while the developing Bucks get a blending scorer and rebounder. 

-- O.Sandor.

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

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Friday , Apr , 30 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

NBA Names Tyreke Evans Rookie of the Year

Tyreke Evans of the Sacramento Kings is the recipient of the Eddie Gottlieb Trophy as the 2009-10 T-Mobile NBA Rookie of the Year, the NBA announced today.

Evans received 67 first-place votes (491 points) from a panel of 123 sportswriters and broadcasters throughout the United States and Canada. Golden State’s Stephen Curry finished second with 391 points and Milwaukee’s Brandon Jennings finished third with 204 points. Players were awarded five points for each first-place vote, three points for each second-place vote and one point for each third-place vote.

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Thursday , Apr , 29 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Scott Skiles: Brandon Jennings Should Have Been RoY

The Rookie of the Year Award will be given to Tyreke Evans of the Sacramento Kings later this week.

Milwaukee Bucks Head Coach Scott Skiles believes his rookie point guard, Brandon Jennings, should have won the award. However, Skiles was more than understanding on why the voters chose Evans.

"Those [Jennings, Evans, Stephen Curry] were the three guys that stood out," Skiles said prior to Game 5 against the Hawks. "Each person that votes has their own criteria. All I can say is, I find it hard to believe there's any rookie that has been more valuable to their team than Brandon has been."

"But how can you argue with what Tyreke did or what Curry did," he said. "Those guys had great years as well."
 
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Monday , Apr , 26 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Brandon Jennings: The Hawks Were Cocky

Milwaukee’s Brandon Jennings(notes) doesn’t exactly lack self-confidence, so he knows cockiness when he sees it.

And the rookie guard thinks the Atlanta Hawks came into Game 3 in Milwaukee expecting to blow out the Bucks.

Instead, Milwaukee gave its heavily favored first-round playoff rivals something to think about: a 107-89 drubbing Saturday that cut Atlanta’s series lead to 2-1. The Bucks now have a chance to even the series at home in Monday’s Game 4 before heading back to Atlanta.

“I felt like they were a little bit cocky,” Jennings said Sunday. “They came in like, ‘OK, it’s Milwaukee, we’re up 2-0.’ I mean, that’s just how I felt. I felt like they thought they were just going to come in and just blow us out. I think with the crowd, and the way we came out, it just changed everything.” 
 
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Friday , Apr , 23 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Josh Smith: There Ain’t Nothing to Do in Milwaukee

First, Joakim Noah. Now, Josh Smith.

The Atlanta forward is taking a jab at Milwaukee, saying "everybody knows there's nothing to do" in the city that will host the Hawks in Games 3 and 4 of the playoffs.

Smith made his comments Thursday when someone asked him what he planned to do after the series shifted to the Bucks' home court. Game 3 is Saturday night.

Smith says he's never really done anything in Milwaukee and will "just be happy to find a restaurant." When a reporter jokingly asked if he'd ever take a vacation there, Smith replied, "Would you go? Everybody knows there ain't nothing to do in Milwaukee." 

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