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Posted on: July 15, 2010 2:03 pm
 

David Kahn thinks Darko is "Manna from heaven"

Posted by Matt Moore

This is too easy. It really is. I could spend 250-500 words describing all the absolutely ridiculous content in the video below. I could talk about the insanity of comparing Vlade Divac, one of the greatest big men with touch in the league to Darko Milicic, a stone with two legs. I could talk about comparing Chris Webber's storied career to Darko's which is storied in the annals of draft busts. I could point out what Tom Haberstroh of HoopData.com did this morning, which is the unbelievable gap in assist percentage between Vlade/Webber and Darko. But really, the video tells the best story all by itself.

Highlights:

  • Darko Milicic is "Manna from heaven." 
  • Darko can pass "like Vlade"
  • Webber: "Vlade Divac?"
  • Darko's career similar to Chris Webber.
  • Chris Webber: Darko's career not similar to Chris Webber.
  • Webber: "Good luck"


Posted on: July 15, 2010 1:39 pm
Edited on: July 15, 2010 1:42 pm
 

Report: Warriors sold to Lacob and Guber

Posted by Royce Young

Both Darren Rovell of CNBC.com and Matt Steinmetz of CSNBayArea.com are reporting that the Golden State Warriors have been sold to Joe Lacob, managing partner at private equity firm Kleiner Perkins, and Peter Guber, chairman of Mandalay Entertainment.

Oracle CEO Larry Ellison, who was thought to be the front-runner, obviously didn't win the bid. As to why, Rovell tweets : "When u r worth $28 BIL, what's another couple MIL? Think he miscalculated." Yeah, evidently.

The new owners aren't entirely new to the team ownership game. Lacob bought a share of the Celtics in 2006 and Guber's Mandalay Entertainment owns and operates multiple minor league baseball teams, including two affiliates of the New York Yankees

The team was reportedly sold for $450 million, topping the previous NBA high of $401 million, which is what Robert Sarver paid for the Phoenix Suns in 2004.

Chris Cohan bought  the franchise in 1995 for $119 million and as of December of last year was valued at $315 million by Forbes.

As San Jose Mercury columnist Tim Kawakami puts it , if Lacob and Guber keep the current front office, they're an immediate failure. Hard to disagree there. The Warriors are one of the most intriguing franchises because of the unwavering passion of the fanbase and consistent revenue the team generates. But for whatever reason, through hapless ownership and front office management, the team has been a massive failure over the last 15 years, save for one shining moment in the 2007 playoffs against the Mavericks.

Since now former owner Cohan bought the team 16 years ago, the Warriors have yielded the second worst record in that span, second to only the Clippers. So clearly the price wasn't about the on-court performance of the team. It's about the product and the overall franchise is in good shape with the city, the arena and the fanbase. There's really no reason the Warriors shouldn't be better. And now with Cohan out and new owners in, maybe things will turn around.

Category: NBA
Posted on: July 15, 2010 11:48 am
Edited on: July 15, 2010 11:49 am
 

Jefferson likely headed back to Spurs

Posted by Royce Young

Richard Jefferson made big news when he opted out of a contract that would've paid him around $15 million this upcoming season. His reasoning? He was after a long-term deal before the new collective bargaining agreement drops. He hoped to make up his losses in the long run.

That sounds like a great plan except for one small, but key part: He hasn't been able to find a team.

Now comes the report from Jeff McDonald of the San Antonio News-Express quoting a source that says the chances of Jefferson returning to the Spurs are at 95 percent. Those sound like pretty good chances to me.

Jefferson arrived in San Antonio last season from Milwaukee and most agreed it was a major deal for the Spurs. But Jefferson was disappointing in a contract year (averaged just 12.3 ppg), so common sense said he wouldn't exercise the opt-out. He's 30 and while he surely has a few good years left, fetching anything near the $15 million he was set to make was just not going to happen.

Right now, the other primary option for Jefferson is probably in Los Angeles with the Clippers, but as Matt Moore pointed out today , the Clips are working out Tracy McGrady and likely wouldn't offer Jefferson the long-term deal he's after. They just drafted Al-Farouq Aminu who plays small forward and obviously they already have Eric Gordon, so it's not likely the Clippers are in play anymore.

Posted on: July 15, 2010 11:32 am
 

Delonte West and the Cavs at a crossroads

Posted by Matt Moore

It's important from time to time to take stock of how quickly life can turn. How it can go from roses to ruin, and that's certainly the case with Delonte West.

West arrived in Cleveland in 2008 in a trade as what was considered an expendable piece of the puzzle the Cavs were trying to put together. But almost immediately, he and LeBron James developed an on-court rapport that was exactly what James needed. Someone to get out and run with, who could hit from the outside, and was always looking to find James to finish in transition. He fit in with the culture in Cleveland, was close with his teammates, and seemed to be gelling. Delonte's career was looking up like it never had.

But then, those same dark forces that bring down so many people in our world began circling West. West had previously admitted he suffered from bipolar disorder, a serious mental condition that inherently creates mental instability and mood swings. Before the 2009 season, West was arrested on gun charges while driving a three-wheeled motorcycle. After being pulled over, he was found to have a 9MM Beretta, a Ruger .357, and a shotgun in a guitar case. All loaded. The jokes were out of control from the media and blogosphere. Mad Max , Rambo . My personal favorite was Once Upon a Time in Mexico . But it wasn't funny. West's intentions were never made clear as to why he was driving with that much firepower, but things became even scarier when he skipped Cavs' training camp while dealing with "personal issues ."

West was in need of help, but wasn't accepting it, and his team and teammates were focused on a championship.

Quietly, West slipped back into the Cavs. The season began, the Cavs were winning, and all the troubles seemed behind West again. Then a second-round exit paved the way for a LeBron James exit. There were salacious rumors not suitable for post here that insinuated West was partially to do with James' departure. Then Thursday, he pled guilty to those same gun charges he was brought with a year ago. He faces electronic monitoring and extensive counseling, though his plea deal did help him to avoid jail time.

Brian Windhorst of the Cleveland Plain-Dealer reports this morning that David Stern is likely to follow up on that sentence with a 3-6 game suspension for West. Windhorst also reports that he's not expected back with the Cavaliers.

West has shown so much promise, and his problems have not been sourced by simple bad decisions (though there have been many) or a laziness on the floor. By all accounts he's been a good teammate and someone that coaches tend to like. He was a pivotal part of the East's top seed's playoff run. And within a matter of months, it's all gone, along with LeBron James.

Life can turn on you in an instant if you make the wrong moves and don't watch out for yourself, or if someone's not watching out for you.

Hopefully someone is watching out for Delonte West right now.


Posted on: July 15, 2010 10:44 am
 

Bell Jazz sting clears way for Brown's LA return

Posted by Matt Moore

Looks like they may "Let Shannon Dunk" in LA again. With Raja Bell now out of the picture after trapising off to the Jazz, a spot has been cleared for Shannon Brown to return to Los Angeles. His agent told Yahoo! Sports that he and Lakers' General Manager are "close" on working something out to allow the 24-year-old combo-guard to retrun to LA for another contract to continue the title run.

Brown was considered expendable as the Lakers tried to upgrade their backcourt, but with all other options having departed, Brown seems like the safe lock. Brown, a fan favorite for his death=defying missed dunk attempts in garbage time, had an up and down year for the Lakers last season. When Kobe Bryant was injured, he stepped in and contributed brilliantly, scoring, driving, and attacking. But as soon as the Mamba stepped back on the floor, his confidence seemed to wane. Additionally, his defense is inconsistent, occasionallly being spot on with great help-defense and aggressive perimeter ball-pressure, and other times getting worked over and lost in various sets and switches.

Still, this will work out great for LA, who get a young, versatile, athletic player that can play either position to back up the ancient Derek Fisher, and just gives them yet another component of something that's already been proven to work. All the pieces are falling into place for another Lakers championship run.


Posted on: July 15, 2010 10:21 am
Edited on: July 15, 2010 10:29 am
 

Clippers thinking McGrady

Posted by Matt Moore

The Clippers are considered one of the most woe-begotten teams in the NBA. So naturally, they're pulled towards one of the most woe-begotten players in the NBA.

Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports reports that the Clippers are taking a good long look at Tracy McGrady, the former Rocket All-Star wing who finished play with the Knicks last season. McGrady, 31, is said to have piqued the interest of LA officials who are in need of a scoring swingman with Travis Outlaw departing for New Jersey.

McGrady showed flashes with the Knicks that he had a heartbeat, but also flat-lined after any sort of extended minutes adventure. Physically, there' just not much left there after more surgeries than Robocop. But the Clippers are willing to take a chance on him, because he provides an affordable (read: cheap) alternative that brings name value. It's not a solution to their problems, but really, what is?

McGrady is also interested in signing with the Heat, and the Bulls have considered adding McGrady as well.

Posted on: July 14, 2010 9:50 pm
Edited on: July 14, 2010 9:52 pm
 

Report: Bell cancels with Kobe, signs with Jazz

Posted by Royce Young

No summit for Raja Bell and Kobe Bryant to potentially set aside differences. Instead, Bell has signed a three-year deal worth about $10 million with Utah, Marc Stein reports .

What does this mean? First off, this is a pretty clear indication the Jazz don't plan to match on Wesley Matthews. Second, it probably means their chase for Ronnie Brewer is over. Bell isn't an elite offensive player player by any means (averaging just 10.3 points per game for his career) but he's an above average defensive player and a winning type of player.

He's 33 and is coming off a season where he only played six games, so three years is a little bit lengthy for him. I'd expect for the third year to probably be non-guaranteed. The Jazz obviously still could match on Matthews or go after a free agent like Brewer, but if they choose not to, now they have some insurance in Bell.

Posted on: July 14, 2010 3:03 pm
 

DeMarcus Cousins smashing Summer League

Posted by Matt Moore

Immature. Hyper-emotional. Basketcase.

Here's another word you should start associating with DeMarcus Cousins: Double-double.

Cousins has brought the umph in two games in summer league, averaging 16.5 points and 11 rebounds, to go with 1 block per game. Doesn't matter if that's Summer League. For the first two games of a kid's pro career, those are some pretty tasty digits.

Cousins' defense has also been a show, as Sactown Royalty pointed out . Cousins' biggest asset is his size, with a wide frame that can force opponents too deep on a baseline spin and block off the lane on face-up drives. Usually that's accompanied by a distinct lack of speed and quickness, but Cousins is actually showing off fairly impressive athleticism during the SL.

Between Cousins and Tyreke Evans, the Kings look like they'll have a killer 1-2 combo punch with hyper-athletic, versatile guys at both point guard and power forward. Evans is not participating in Summer League in antcipation of Team USA workouts, but the first time those two step on the floor, it's going to be exciting for Kings fans.

It's not all roses for Cousins, of course, who still has a lot of catching up to do with the rest of the NBA frontcourt average, much less elite. He needs to work on his fundamentals and spacing, but has at least already shown both the athleticism mentioned earlier, along with the touch necessary to bring the buckets. SR also wonders if usage is going to be a problem , but if it is, it will only be a short-term one, as Cousins, at least so far, very much looks like the future in Cowbell World.
 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com