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Sunday , Dec , 18 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Lakers to sign Troy Murphy?

Troy Murphy has agreed to a one-year deal with the Los Angeles Lakers, a league source told Yahoo! Sports.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: He’s not Chris Paul or Dwight Howard, but Troy Murphy is something.

Yesterday, the Los Angeles Lakers inked stretch-four Troy Murphy to a one-year contract likely for a portion of the mid-level exception or the veteran’s exception.

Murphy was once an effective and useful player, but spent last year toiling on Avery Johnson’s bench in New Jersey before joining the Celtics for a late season push.

Expect Murphy to pressure opposing defences with his range and contribute on the glass as a reserve.

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

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Wednesday , Mar , 02 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Celtics, not Heat, sign Troy Murphy

Troy Murphy has decided to sign with the Boston Celtics.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: The rich just got richer. Today, the Boston Celtics won the first round of the veteran’s buyout war, signing free agent Troy Murphy to a pro-rated one year contract.

Translation: Murphy is a short-term rental. 

The left-handed post was dealt from the New Jersey Nets to the Golden State Warriors at the trade deadline. The Warriors then bought Murphy out, giving him the opportunity to choose his next team.  

Murphy will add depth off the bench for the Celtics and can start if Shaquille O’Neal and/or Jermaine O’Neal aren’t healthy.

Whatever his role, Murphy will rebound and extend opposing defences with his deadly three-point range.  

Most importantly, the green-and-white prevented Murphy from signing with the rival Miami Heat. And such a signing could be the difference between winning and losing the Eastern Conference championship.

--Oly Sandor.


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Sunday , Feb , 27 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Miami Heat want Mike Bibby and Troy Murphy?

The Heat would like to sign Mike Bibby if the Wizards give him a buyout; Washington called it unlikely but hasn’t ruled it out. The Heat will explore Troy Murphy if he gets a buyout from Golden State (one report has Boston as the front-runner) and perhaps Indiana’s T.J. Ford, but he’s a poor three-point shooter.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Superstar laden teams need shooters to win.

For instance, Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen’s Chicago Bulls squads had deep threats like B.J. Armstrong, Jud Buchelor, Craig Hodges, Steve Kerr, and John Paxson.

Kobe Bryant, winner of five championships with the Los Angeles Lakers, has played with marksmen like Derek Fisher, Rick Fox, Devean George, Ron Harper, Glen Rice, Brian Shaw, and Sasha Vujacic.

Shooters spread the floor and keep defences honest. If a defender helps or helped on Bryant, Jordan, or Pippen, these Hall of Famers find the shooter who usually nails the open look.

It’s basic basketball. It’s also winning basketball.

So expect the Miami Heat to take a run at Mike Bibby and/or Troy Murphy –if they get a buyout from the Washington Wizards and/or Golden State Warriors.

After all, the Heat has their superstars: Chris Bosh, LeBron James, and Dwyane Wade.

Bibby could run the club’s offensive sets. His greatest asset would be playing off-the-ball, spotting-up, and knocking shots when defences helped on Bosh, James, and Wade.

Remember, Bibby was a clutch performer for the Sacramento Kings, giving those championship Laker squads all they could handle in some classic playoff battles.

Murphy is a nice inside-outside four-man. He can help on the glass, while also stretching defenses with his incredible three-point range.

However, the Heat may want to sign Murphy just to thwart their prime competition in the Eastern Conference –the Boston Celtics.

Expect the Heat to be extremely active if Bibby and/or Murphy become available. Their South Beach superstars can always use additional shooters.

--Oly Sandor.

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Saturday , Feb , 26 , 2011 Oly Sandor

Rumor: Celtics keeping an eye on Troy Murphy?

Meanwhile, Boston will continue to monitor the buyouts going on around the league with eyes toward adding as many as two more players with its available roster spots. All eyes seem to be on Troy Murphy, the sharpshooting big man who was traded to Golden State this week and could wind up available.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: As hard as it may be, the Boston Celtics have to get over Kendrick Perkins’ departure.

Sure, Perkins was their heart-and-soul, but trading the large five-man to the Oklahoma City Thunder was prudent -especially since the club weren’t prepared to extend him to the tune of $10 million per season.

Moving on means attempting to sign free agent Troy Murphy. The veteran was recently traded to the Golden State Warriors, who will buy him out.

All it will cost is money, specifically a pro-rated portion of the veteran’s minimum. And Murphy will contribute on the glass while stretching defenses with his outside range.

In fact, he’d have a similar role to former reserve Rasheed Wallace, who was with the Celtics in 2008 and 2009.

And Murphy will be motivated. He’d didn’t fit in New Jersey and ended up getting banished from the team by Nets coach Avery Johnson.

Such a situation has to appeal to a player’s sense of pride. So signing Murphy in a few weeks may help the Celtics' players, coaches, and fans forget Perkins.

--Oly Sandor.

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Wednesday , Feb , 23 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Warriors acquire Troy Murphy, Buyout coming?

The Warriors and Nets are close to finalizing a multi-player trade, according to sources. Golden State will send Dan Gadzuric and Brandan Wright to New Jersey for Troy Murphy and a 2012 second round pick.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Wait a second. Wasn’t Troy Murphy supposed to go to the Denver Nuggets as part of the Carmelo Anthony trade?

That’s right. Anthony declined the New Jersey Nets’ overtures and is now a New York Knick.

Anyway, the Nets wasted little time sending Murphy back to his first NBA team, the Golden State Warriors, for Dan Gadzuric and Brandan Wright.

Murphy isn’t returning home for a reunion or coming full circle, though.

In a day or so, the Warriors will buyout whatever is left on his expiring contract and allow him to hit the free agent market.

Murphy will then have his choice of contenders, and the Boston Celtics, Dallas Mavericks, Miami Heat, and Orlando Magic are all expected to show interest.

On paper, the Magic makes the most sense. Murphy can help center Dwight Howard on the glass, while stretching defenses with his three-point range –like Rashard Lewis before he got moved to the Washington Wizards.

One issue will be Murphy’s conditioning. He has only played in 18 games due to injury and a bizarre banishing by Coach Avery Johnson.

After months of frustration, the left-handed veteran will hit the court. For the first time in his nine year career, he could see playoff action, too.

However, what exactly Murphy can contribute is unknown.

--Oly Sandor.


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Wednesday , Dec , 15 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Nets acquire two first round picks to get Carmelo Anthony?

The Nets are close to acquiring multiple first round picks that will be used in a potential trade for Carmelo Anthony, two people familiar with the situation told CBSSports.com.

New Jersey has agreed in principle to a three-team trade where the Nets receive a first round pick in 2012 from the Rockets that will be lottery protected according to the Houston Chronicle and an additional first round pick from the Lakers in 2011. Houston would acquire Terrence Williams, while Joe Smith would be sent to the Lakers and Sasha Vujacic would go to the Nets.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: It’s the calm before the storm.

The New Jersey Nets now have two additional first round draft picks to help them pry Carmelo Anthony from the Denver Nuggets.

This gives the soon to be Brooklyn squad an advantage over the New York Knicks in terms of what they can offer the Nuggets in a trade.

The Nets can include multiple first round draft picks, blue-chip prospect Derrick Favors, and the expiring contract of Troy Murphy in any deal for Anthony.

The Knicks are a different story. They lack first round draft picks, top young talent, and attractive contracts.

The complication is Anthony’s pending free agency. He’s set to become a free agent in July. The Nets could acquire the forward, only to have him leave a few months later and sign with the team of his choosing.

Anthony, of course, has let it be known he prefers the Knicks to the Nets. And the Nets would never recover if they traded for Anthony and lost him to their cross-town rivals.

So Mikhail Prokhorov better get Anthony’s signature on an extension before mortgaging the franchise for the forward in a trade.

--Oly Sandor.


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Sunday , Nov , 28 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Avery Johnson and Troy Murphy beefin` in New Jersey?

Troy Murphy will be activated for tomorrow's game against Portland, coach Avery Johnson says, which should represent his first NBA action since Nov. 13. But the 30-year-old said that's news to him. The New Jersey native indicated that he doesn't speak with Johnson -- "not at all" -- and expressed frustration with the coach's critiques of his fitness. "You have to ask (Johnson why he thinks I wasn't in shape)," Murphy said. "I've been in this league for 10 years. I know what I do. I pride myself in all that. You have to ask him." Just minutes earlier, Johnson said he has held Murphy out of the lineup and off the roster "out of respect to him."
 
 
HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Both are at fault. Both should be careful.

Like it or not, Avery Johnson has a reputation. Known as The Little General during his playing days, Johnson’s demanding style has rubbed players the wrong way.

For instance, he clashed with Devin Harris when they were together with the Dallas Mavericks (Harris did endorse Johnson as coach of the Nets). Clearly, he and Troy Murphy are having issues.

Beefing with good players is fine, especially when you have championship rings from your playing days. Beefing with a future member of the basketball Hall of Fame is not fine.

Johnson couldn’t click with legendary table-setter Jason Kidd in Dallas. This was part of the reason he was fired by Team Mark Cuban.

The NBA is a small world. Players, executives, and owners talk. Right or wrong, confrontational coaches are a thing of the past.

So Johnson may want to be less antagonistic –or he’ll find himself on the outside looking in like former Coach of the Year Sam Mitchell and basketball genius Eric Musselman.

(For the record, Mitchell and Musselman can coach. Both deserve better.)

Of course, Murphy is walking also rather precarious line. He’s had moments, but never lived up to his potential with the Golden State Warriors or Indiana Pacers.

Murphy also never lived up to the six-year, $60 million extension he signed with the Warriors in 2004. Murphy’s hometown Nets acquired him for his expiring contract.

The southpaw will be looking for a team this summer. Feuding with Johnson will cost him millions of dollars; after all, the free agent market will be affected by the new Collective Bargaining Agreement.

Johnson and Murphy need to find common ground. Or they must keep their squabbles private. The current situation isn’t good for either of them.

--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 , Jun , 02 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Tony Parker to Pacers for Troy Murphy, Brandon Rush, and draft pick

With only two teams left playing ball, the rumors are starting to fly. Yesterday on his weekly ESPN.com chat, Chad Ford mentioned that one scenario floating out there is San Antonio sending Tony Parker to Indiana for the No. 10 pick, Troy Murphy and Brandon Rush.

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HoopsVibe's Quick Call: After their first round loss to the Phoenix Suns, the San Antonio Spurs are looking to shake things up.

And Tony Parker is the prime candidate to be moved because he has value on-court and on-the-books. After all, Parker can play. The jitterbug point guard still has the 'quicks' to get to the basket at will and can keep opposing defenses honest with his improving range.

Best of all, his $10 million contract expires next July, so whoever acquires him will also get some financial flexibility.

This specific deal with the Indiana Pacers is unlikely since they'd be giving up Rush, an athletic youngster, plus a lottery pick for one year with the Frenchman. Also, Murphy's contract matches Parker's with respect to term and money, killing any potential savings for Larry Bird's squad.

Parker could well be dealt. It won't be to the Pacers, though. By the way, what would Hollywood diva Eva Longoria, who is married to Parker, think of Indiana?

Got thoughts on this rumor?