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Around The World: June 16-17

  1. Written by: DHawes22  / avg. rating: 4.0

    June 16-17

    Trail Blazers: 2011 Mock Draft Database Video: Nikola Vucevic Pre-Draft Workout Video: Kyle Singler Pre-Draft Workout Video: Jon Leuer Pre-Draft Workout Video: Jeremy Tyler Pre-Draft Workout

    Trail Blazers: Predraft Workout: Kyle Singler
    "I think you could put (Singler) on any team in this league, tell him whatever role you want him to fill and he's going to be great at it," said Chad Buchanan, Portland's acting general manager. "Some teams may need more from him than others depending on where he gets picked. If he gets picked by a really good team they may ask for a more defined role for him, which I think he'd be great at."

    Trail Blazers: Patty Mills Partners With Portland Timbers To Assist Australia
    “They actually came to me, not me, but Wears My Shirt, and said ‘Let’s kinda do something together and kinda join Blazers and Timbers together,’” Mills said. “Shot a little commercial that you’ve see, that was a fun little deal. I’m a big Timbers fan.”

    Trail Blazers: No Change In Ford's Newest Mock Draft
    "Case in point: Chad Ford released the fifth iteration of his 2011 mock draft, and he still has the Trail Blazers taking Kenneth Faried. Don't get me wrong, I'm not complaining about the prospect of the team taking Faried. His penchant for hard-nosed play would be a welcomed addition. All I'm saying is that typically we'd see some fluctuations on Ford's big board. This year, crickets, at least when it comes to the Trail Blazers."

    Trail Blazers: Season In Review: The Rookies
    "Not unlike any other recent draft, the Trail Blazers were extremely active on June 24th, 2010, adding three rookies to a 50 win team. In a bevvy of moves, the Trail Blazers sent away the second-longest tenured Blazer, Martell Webster to Minnesota for the draft rights to the No. 16 overall pick, Luke Babbitt. The 6'9" small forward, dubbed "the best shooter in the draft" by most left the University of Nevada after just two seasons. Just six picks later, Portland added a 6'4" combo guard out of the University of Memphis, Elliot Williams who was regarded as one of the top athletes of the class of 2010. A few days prior to the draft, Portland wheeled and dealed their way up to No. 34 from No. 44 in a deal with the Golden State Warriors. With the high 2nd round pick, it was Armon Johnson, Luke's teammate and point guard from Nevada who got the call to be apart of Rip City."

    Oregon Live: A breakdown of the Trail Blazers' options with soon-to-be free agent Greg Oden
    "Assuming the Blazers tender Oden the one-year qualifying offer (which seems likely) and Oden does not immediately sign it, he becomes a restricted free agent on July 1."

    Oregon Live: Petteri Koponen: Will Trail Blazers fans ever see the Finnish guard?
    "Our team, where we're at... we are trying to make the next step in the playoffs and in the postseason. We want to add guys that are ready to make that next step. We want to make sure that we're not bringing a guy over and having him sit on the bench or the D-League and not maximizing that guy's talent for us. It's about finding the right time. Obviously the player would like to come over sooner rather than later, but we want to make sure we're doing the right thing for the team."

    Blazersedge: Is Wesley Matthews Movable?
    "The Trail Blazers' decision on the trade-ability of Wesley Matthews depends in large part on what they're looking for. Do they need a lead singer heartthrob? They'll need to look elsewhere. But if they're happy with a guy who's reliable, great at his part, understands the music, and seldom misses a note to support the more glam-ready members of the band then Wesley is their man. To me the final question is not so much about Matthews as about the players who surround him. If the band has enough stars they should keep him. Lacking enough star-power they have to question how many studio musicians they can carry and still be a touring band."

    Ball Don't Lie: Video: ‘If I Could Be Like Dirk’
    "It remains to be seen how Dirk will be utilized. Here's one idea from Funny or Die, in which Dirk becomes the subject of Gatorade's old "Be Like Mike" campaign. Pretty soon, kids won't stick their tongues out on the playground. Instead, they'll wear weird blond wigs and shoot awkward one-legged fadeaway jumpers just like their hero."

    Ball Don't Lie: Antoine Wright doesn’t have an NBA gig because of his mom
    "We're a team now, so I came into practice [the next day] and told everybody, I said, 'When we go into film, I'm just going to put Mario on blast.' So I walk in last, and I come in through the front and Mario is in the back, and I said, 'Man, you know what? That's foul what you did to my mom. All she wanted was a picture. Everybody in this room would have took a picture with your mom if she asked, or anybody else's mom in this room. That's probably why we don't have any team chemistry.'"

    Ball Don't Lie: Jimmer Fredette impresses in workout with Kemba Walker
    "Last Friday, we informed you of BYU guard Jimmer Fredette's desire to have a pre-draft workout with point guards Brandon Knight of Kentucky and Kemba Walker of Connecticut. As a college star saddled with concerns about his athleticism and defense, Fredette wanted to prove that he can hang with the kinds of players that get branded as NBA prospects from the time they're 16 years old. It was a smart move by him, if also a risky one."

    SLAM: Brandon Knight: ‘I’m Trying To Work Out Against Kyrie Irving’
    “Knight strongly feels that he ranks among the most talented athletes in a weak draft class. And after being accused during recent weeks of ducking prospects such as ex-Connecticut guard Kemba Walker during pre-draft sessions, Knight revealed his true aspiration. ‘The guy I’m trying to work out against is Kyrie Irving,’ said Knight, referring to the former Duke point guard widely expected to be taken No. 1 overall by Cleveland. The 6-foot-3, 177-pound Knight asserted that he is a true point guard. He attended Kentucky and followed in the footsteps of NBA stars such as John Wall to learn the position. He then attempted to prove during his Jazz workout that he can excel when commanding a professional team. ‘I was working with all the coaches,’ "

    SLAM: Mock: JaJuan Johnson, No. 25
    "He improved in each of his four seasons at Purdue, as he wisely chose to remain in school after considering each of the past two drafts. The most recent decision to stay certainly paid off, as he ended up a Consensus All-American, Big Ten Player of the Year, and Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year. He also joined the likes of David West, Emeka Okafor, Andrew Bogut, Michael Beasley, Blake Griffin, and Greg Monroe, as winner of the Pete Newell Big Man Award."

    SLAM: Mock: Donatas Motiejunas, 26
    "Analysts say Motiejunas underwhelmed at the adidas Eurocamp when he was Sir Brick-A-Lot, but word has it that his subpar shooting came on the heels of an intense weight lifting session. He faired much better in a later workout albeit with a much smaller audience. Plus, while playing with Benetton Treviso, Italy’s top division, he averaged 12.4 ppg on 58% field goal shooting while playing 23 minutes per. We all know individual workouts pale in comparison to actual competition, right?"

    Sports Illustrated: Warriors GM: ‘We are not shopping Ellis’
    “We are not shopping Monta Ellis. It is business as usual here. I think you have to look at what just happened in the Finals — it seemed like Dallas played pretty small guards throughout that series with Miami and did a pretty good job of it. Our problem is not the small backcourt [of Ellis and Stephen Curry]. Our problem is defense.”

    SLAM: Amar’e Stoudemire: LeBron Needs to Connect Better With Public
    "Stoudemire, a fan favorite in New York, was clearly bothered by James’s remarks. “Everybody has their own way of commenting on things, but I would have commented differently,” Stoudemire said. “One thing about Michael Jordan was that no matter how great he was and how much of a platform he stood on, he still related to all the hard workers out there in the world. I think LeBron is still young,” Stoudemire added, “and there is still time for him to reconnect with the public.”

    DIME: NBA Trade Rumors: Where Will Andre Iguodala Land?
    "The hottest team to be rumored for Iguodala right now, the Clippers have had discussions revolving a swap between him and center Chris Kaman, according to ESPN. Financially, the trade makes sense, although Philadelphia is said to have wanted another player included in exchange for Iguodala."

    DIME: Wizards Want To Move Up To Draft Derrick Williams
    "We continue to hear rumbling of trade opportunities at this spot, although there is skepticism on the No. 2 pick’s value this year. There is talk that Minnesota has offered Washington a swap of the Nos. 2 and 6 picks in a package that includes JaVale McGee, but that appears unlikely unless the Timberwolves part with more assets."


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