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Around The World: June 5

  1. Written by: DHawes22

    June 5

    Trail Blazers: Mock Draft Database Video: Elliot Williams 2011-12 Season Highlights Video: June 4 Trail Blazers Courtside

    Trail Blazers: Neil Olshey Named Trail Blazers General Manager
    “I am very grateful for the opportunity to become a part of this successful franchise,” said Olshey. “Portland is a great basketball city with a rich tradition, an incredible fan base and committed leadership. I’m joining an organization that has a strong foundation and a bright future. I couldn’t be more excited and I’m ready to hit the ground running.”

    Trail Blazers: Countdown To That Championship Season
    "The Blazers that year were like a machine that just kept coming at you," Bibby said 20 years later. "I've never seen an NBA team which played so much together, were so unselfish. "All through their lineup, they had guys who could run you ragged -- Johnny Davis, David Twardzik, Bob Gross, Larry Steele, Herm Gilliam. They just moved without the ball so well, waiting for those great Walton passes," Bibby added."

    Trail Blazers: Olshey Picks Portland
    "Olshey later drafted Blake Griffin, started construction on the Clippers roster that helped them reach the second round of the playoffs. The acquisitions of Chris Paul, Chauncey Billups, Caron Butler, and Kenyon Martin, are all on Olshey's resume as well. As impressive as those moves are, getting an owner like Donald Sterling to buy into in a "plan" like this trumps them all."

    Trail Blazers: Stein: Trail Blazers Among Three Teams Chasing Nash
    "New York and Miami are also frequently mentioned as potential Nash destinations, but neither the Knicks nor the Heat have the requisite cap room to make a serious bid. The Blazers, by contrast, have coveted Nash for years in trades and will finally have the financial flexibility to chase him, offering the closest proximity to Nash’s Vancouver roots than anywhere else on the NBA map among other perks. Sources say that the Raptors, meanwhile, will be determined suitors in the Nash Sweepstakes, with a serious offer forthcoming to try to bring the newly installed general manager of Canada’s national team back to home soil after 16 seasons south of the border with the Suns and Mavericks."

    Oregon Live: 2012 NBA draft: Should the Trail Blazers draft Andre Drummond? (poll)
    "You look at his ability to run the floor and play above the rim, his natural physical attributes, there just aren’t many players that fit his mold, including guys in the league right now. Skill-wise, he’s a way from being (NBA ready), but he has some good instincts."

    Oregon Live: Trail Blazers hire Neil Olshey as general manager after Olshey shuns Clippers
    “I am very pleased to have Neil as our new general manager,” Blazers owner Paul Allen said in the statement. “He has the skills and the vision to successfully guide our organization into a new era of Trail Blazers basketball. He’s proven that he can quickly turn around a franchise, and we are confident he can do that in Portland.”

    Oregon Live: NBA High-5: As Blazers turn franchise keys over to Neil Olshey, key word seems to be 'quickly'
    "Olshey will have a lot to work with -- the two picks and good cap space, plus a head coach opening -- to put his imprint on the franchise. What an opportunity. Let's see what he can do, and if he can do it, as his new owner seems to want, quickly."

    Columbian: Blazers hire Olshey as general manager
    “As everyone knows, we’ve been at this for a while trying to figure out who the right guy is,” Miller said. “We feel 100 percent confident we found the right guy. Neil is someone we targeted and been after for a while. He’s done some great things and is someone with a proven record.”

    CSNNW: Clippers were willing to match Blazers' offer, Olshey still exits and signs 3-year deal
    "Neil Olshey to the Portland Trail Blazers almost didn't get done. On Friday, the Clippers announced that Olshey and the team had agreed in principle to keep him with the organization for a third season as the general manager. But, there wasn't anything in writing. Sources say the Trail Blazers reached out to Olshey over the weekend and offered him a three-year deal with a team option on the fourth."

    Rip City Project: The Wait Is Over, The Blazers Have A GM
    "If memory serves, Olshey was one of the many names bandied about in the last few months, as Portland worked diligently to fill the GM seat vacated by Rich Cho well over a year ago. In his capacity as Interim General Manager, Chad Buchanan orchestrated a few blockbuster deals. Some for the better (cutting the sort of dead or at least under-producing weight of Marcus Camby and Gerald Wallace and setting the table for Portland to have one of the more enviable positions in the upcoming draft), and some for the worse (Raymond Felton coming in; Andre Miller going out). Buchanan also oversaw one of the most trying seasons in Blazer history, a season that included the premature retirement of Brandon Roy and the parting of ways with former number one overall draft pick Greg Oden."

    SB Nation: There's No Middle Ground With New Blazers GM Neil Olshey
    "What Olshey will get is resources: though rumor has it Allen will be stepping back his investment in the Blazers' future, there's no question he'll likely continue to spend more than Sterling. Donald T. Sterling has changed a bit -- he paid Dunleavy quite handsomely (even though he tried to snake out of the coach-GM's contract after firing him) and has salary parity with other good teams. I mean, he agreed to pay DeAndre Jordan $42 million! DeAndre Jordan's contract and the word "cheap" can never both exist in the same realm."

    NBA: Olshey Leaving Clippers, Taking GM Reins In Portland
    "Olshey opted for Portland, according to a source, because the Blazers — while not being an easy place to work either, having fired several executives in the last three years, including Cho, his predecessor, Kevin Pritchard, and Pritchard’s assistant, Tom Penn — nonetheless have the resources available to be involved in any transaction. With Allen’s largesse, the Blazers are always potential players in any trade, free-agent signing or Draft day deals. The Blazers currently have the sixth and 11th picks overall in this month’s Draft."

    Sporting News: Portland Trail Blazers hire GM Neil Olshey away from Clippers
    "Olshey joins a team that is in limbo following a tumultuous regular season in which Greg Oden was injured again, Brandon Roy retired, coach Nate McMillan was fired, and center Marcus Camby and forward Gerald Wallace were traded. Olshey does have some chips to work with, including the No. 6 and 11 picks in the draft, and potentially has an acre of cap space. Guard Jamal Crawford is expected to opt out of his contract, leaving the Blazers with only about $24 million in contract commitments, plus a tough decision on what to pay restricted free agent Nicolas Batum."

    Portland Roundball Society: Being Cautiously Optimistic About the Neil Olshey Era
    "The move Olshey has been criticized for the most is actually the one I’m least concerned about with regards to his potential performance in Portland. At the 2011 trading deadline, he traded the Clippers’ first-round pick from that year to Cleveland for Mo Williams, as a courtesy for them to take Baron Davis’ contract off his hands. The pick turned out to be the top overall selection, and Kyrie Irving is now the centerpiece of a young Cavs team that has a bright future. But the Clippers finished with the eighth-worst record in 2010-11, meaning the probability of that pick landing at No. 1 was 2.8%. Considering the Blazers have no contracts even half as bad as Baron’s albatross, the likelihood of Olshey trading another high first-round pick in a salary dump is low. "

    Ball Don't Lie: The wit and wisdom of San Antonio Spurs coach Gregg Popovich (VIDEO)
    "In a shocking turn of events, to say the absolute least, the San Antonio Spurs might be a day away from watching their season end following Wednesday's Game 6 against the Oklahoma City Thunder. Which means that, for the duration of a long and cruel summer, we will be bereft of the wit and wisdom of Spurs coach Gregg Popovich, as he says the absolute least to both sideline reporters and the collection of column-hungry postgame scribes alike. And his players. And then back to the sideline reporters. He's the absolute best, and whether his season extends for a scant few more hours or three more weeks, let's take a chance to enjoy the absolute best of Coach Pop."

    Ball Don't Lie: NBA TV’s upcoming ‘Dream Team’ documentary already has us buzzing (VIDEO)
    "Just a reminder that NBA TV's special feature "The Dream Team" is set to premiere at 9 p.m ET on June 13. That's a Wednesday. That's an evening that you should clear. Even with that in place, you should set your DVR. Then another. Then a VCR to record it, as well. Then set up a tripod to film the feature as it plays. Once it's over, watch it again. Why? This, the newest trailer, as released by NBA TV."

    Ball Don't Lie: Dwight Howard is loyal to his Orlando Magic, and now you can celebrate his loyalty with a Magic-printed T-shirt
    "A few years ago, after noticing the abundance of semi-vintage NBA jerseys at various outdoor concerts, an Internet meme was created around various images of youngsters of a certain age (and, usually, skin tone) sporting old Glenn Robinson or Dell Curry jerseys with tongue firmly placed in cheek, as they nodded along to Pitchfork-approved beats. Now, courtesy of Josh Robbins of the Orlando Sentinel, we've discovered the irony of ironies, the ironiest T-shirt you're ever going to find. As sold by the Orlando Magic, on the team's website, it's a T-shirt with Dwight Howard's picture emblazoned with the word "LOYALTY," celebrating that one day and a half last March when Dwight decided he wanted to stay a member of the Orlando Magic."

    Ball Don't Lie: Behind the Box Score, where the Oklahoma City Thunder have stolen the Spurs’ confidence
    "The Thunder created this sudden stop, this jerk forward and swift pullback. The team's defensive resurgence has the Spurs thinking twice on every possession, especially when that initial screen is set, working out of fear in an area that used to see them taking chances and trusting that things would eventually end up with the net snapping. Not only is Kendrick Perkins burning six-figure calorie counts each night, but Russell Westbrook and Thabo Sefolosha are making life hellish for Tony Parker with their length, and the Spurs have shortened their ball movement as a result. Bad choice, bad result.''

    The Basketball Jones: Stephen Jackson just needs to make a few changes to be Tim Duncan
    "If you’ve ever heard Stephen Jackson talk about how good of a teammate he is — and he seems to do it quite a bit, actually — then you’ve heard him mention that Tim Duncan thinks he’s “the ultimate teammate.” It comes up a lot, like more than 76,000 times according to Google. Jackson’s mentioned it so often that it’s even on his Wikipedia page. Needless to say, what Timmy D thinks of Captain Jack is well documented."

    SLAM: Post Up: Thunder Power
    "Yes, there was some late-game drama with the Spurs shrinking a 13-point Thunder lead to just a single possession. But a pull-up jumper from Westbrook (23 points, 12 assists) and a ruthless 3-pointer from James Harden (20 points, 3-4 from three) silenced the AT&T faithful."

    SLAM via SRI: Brad Beal Compares Himself To Ray Allen, Dwyane Wade
    “Describe your game. Is there someone you model it after? ‘My game is really, I’m an all-around player. I love to get my teammates involved. Comparing myself to somebody else, the way I shoot, I shoot similarly to Ray Allen. And when I drive to the basket, I like to compare myself to Dwyane Wade because we have the same body type or whatever. I like to compare myself to those two guys. I take pride in my defense and I’m a pretty good rebounder at my position.’”

    SLAM via Express News: Tim Duncan ‘Absolutely’ Believes the Spurs Can Win Game 6
    "Duncan was even more certain of the Spurs’ ability to bounce back. “I absolutely believe we can win,” he said. “I believe we’ve got the right formula, the right attitude and mindset to be able to win on the road. We’ve been in this situation before. I think we’re all very sad and upset about the loss, but we’re excited to go out there, lace them up and go again.”

    True Hoop: A better option than a superstar
    "We are only a few years into having public statistics that show things like a player's crunch time field goal percentage. They're telling us things that fly in the face of conventional thinking. Mostly that even though it has long felt like Kobe Bryant, Carmelo Anthony, Derrick Rose, Kevin Durant, Dirk Nowitzki and the like almost never miss with the game on the line, the truth is that all of them miss a ton. Look at enough games, and none of them have field goal percentages worth bragging about over any long period of time. "

    Sports Illustrated: Roundtable: State of the East finals
    "That Rondo has been the most valuable player on the floor. Would anyone ever trade LeBron James straight-up for Rondo? That would never happen, and Wade is rated more highly as well as an outright talent. But Rondo's impact on his team has been without peer in this series. Miami is hoping that rookie point guard Norris Cole may neutralize him to some extent, but foul trouble for Rondo is Miami's best hope for limiting him in Game 5."

    Sports Illustrated via Hoopsworld: Report: Memphis Grizzlies expected to shop Rudy Gay this offseason
    "Gay, 25, is owed $53 million over the next three seasons. He has been mentioned in trade rumors over the past two seasons, but Kennedy reports things should grow more serious this summer. The report lists the Golden State Warriors, Toronto Raptors, Brooklyn Nets and Orlando Magic as teams possibly interested in Gay."


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