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Around The World: June 12

  1. Written by: DHawes22

    June 12

    Trail Blazers: Mock Draft Database

    Draft Express: Pre-Draft Measurements Video: Trail Blazers Courtside

    Trail Blazers: An Evening With The Schonz
    "I've got a ring from that team and that day which I'm very proud of. So, after a period of time, I tell folks and show them the ring, and I say 'I want to stick around until they get another one!' Well, they better hurry up!"

    Trail Blazers: Nolan Smith Leads Grand Floral Walk To Support Grieving Families
    “Relationships like that, when a kid knows that he has somebody that he can talk to and put a smile on his face is what we all need. We just love them.”

    Trail Blazers: Transcript: Neil Olshey on Trail Blazers Courtside
    "Look, you're sitting next to a great player and he might not have been a great workout guy but he was a hell of a player. And I think what you have to realize is, what you need to do is construct the workout in a way that answers whatever lingering questions you may have based on answers you couldn't get out of live scouting, film work, analytics, attending practices, background research. That's where the workout comes in. You can't look at the workout in a vacuum and decide that is a tool that should supersede all others. It never made sense to me -- and I did this when I worked for the sports agency -- you put on a beauty contest in 45 minutes and somehow either nullifies or clarifies what a guy did after playing 120 games in a college career."

    Oregon Live: 2012 NBA draft: Should the Trail Blazers draft John Henson? (poll)
    "Henson has a high ceiling and can flat out make a name for himself in the league with play in the paint. His post skills with his back to the basket are coming along and he should be a reliable post threat when they are further along and his face up game is more consistent. Is already a great rebounder and defender, which translates a well for his game, and once he adjusts to the speed and contact of the league, will be that much better. Used a great deal off ball as a screen setter and cutter to catch alley-oops coming from the perimeter off a back screen."

    CSSNW: Blazers: Sullinger workout tomorrow, Wroten on June 20
    "Washington Huskies guard Tony Wroten tells that he has a workout scheduled with the Portland Trail Blazers on June 20. The Trail Blazers' next workout is June 13 and per new general manager Neil Olshey's policy, the team will not announce what players will be participating until the media enters the practice facility."

    Rip City Project: Finals Preview: Or The Lesser Of Two Evils
    "I’m guessing the desire to come out right away and silence the haters is motivation enough for LeBron and Miami to come out and steal game one. Three straight wins in Miami is going to be hard to pull off, though, and the Heat drop either game four or five after splitting games two and three. OKC goes back to Chesapeake Energy Arena down three games to two and wins game six (maybe in overtime, maybe on a Westbrook jumper right at the end of regulation). In pure villain fashion, Bron goes super nova in game seven, and gets his first ring in front of a sobbing and broken-hearted Thunder crowd in a game that is instantly replayed the second it’s over on ESPN Classic."

    Big Lead Sports: Meyers Leonard is Now Being Strongly Considered in the Top 10 of the NBA Draft
    "But if you’re an NBA fan in Portland, Detroit or Milwaukee, you need to get familiar with Leonard real quick. Two sources tell me that Leonard is quickly becoming the third most coveted big man in the draft, and he zoomed past UNC’s Tyler Zeller and John Henson at the NBA draft combine last week. One source says Leonard is getting serious consideration from Portland (picks 6 and 11), Detroit (8th pick, in dire need of a center) and Milwaukee (12th pick, also desperately in need of a center)."

    Pro Basketball Talk: 2012 adidas Eurocamp: Day 2 recap
    “I want to be sure which way we want to go,” he said. “What they want to do, and when they want to do it. That’s going to be huge for me. I don’t know yet, we’ll see July 1 what happens. I’m going to check every situation to see which one is the best for me. I don’t have cities or teams in mind right now, but I just want the best situation.”

    Oregon Live: NBA High-5: As Thunder prepare for Finals, mayor lobbies David Stern for NBA's return to Seattle
    "Seattle fans despise OKC owner Clay Bennett, but Bennett was a strong proponent of keeping the Kings in Sacramento as head of the league's Relocation Committee. Imagine if the idea of the Kings moving to Seattle comes up while Bennett leads that committee."

    Ball Don't Lie: Metta World Peace will play a detective in a Lifetime movie
    "The NBA angle is a little more complicated. World Peace isn't the force he once was, but he had an effective year for the Lakers, particularly as the season moved along and he rounded into shape. The problem is that he wasn't in shape to begin with — in other words, that he seems more interested in opportunities off the court than what he can do for a team on it. Between this movie and his brief "Dancing with the Stars" stint, MWP is trying out some new things. There's no doubt that he's diverted some attention away from his primary profession."

    Ball Don't Lie: 2012 NBA Finals look back: Before they were stars, they were just kids in the yearbook, too
    "If you guessed Oklahoma City Thunder guard James Harden, please allot yourself 10 Internet points. Back before he was the bearded belle of the OKC ball, Harden was a clean-shaven star at Artesia High School in Lakewood, Calif., leading his team to consecutive state titles as a junior and senior, and racking up multiple All-America selections before heading to the desert to join the Arizona State Sun Devils."

    Ball Don't Lie: The Boston Celtics? Gone till November
    "Unlike San Antonio, though, the Celtics have a real shot at rebuilding. And unlike the Spurs, they don't have a couple of All-Star level studs that are near their primes in Tony Parker and (to a lesser extent) Manu Ginobili. Unlike San Antonio, the Celtics could truly just about clear the ledger here and work with significant cap space. And finally, unlike San Antonio, Boston has a potential franchise player to build around that is years younger than Parker and possibly better when it all shakes out. Even if we (and possibly they) admit to having no idea just what sorts of players to surround the alluringly unique Rajon Rondo with."

    Ball Don't Lie: Steve Javie will serve as referee analyst for ESPN, and for once we’re applauding the ref
    "Former referee Steve Javie, free from the long arm of the NBA and well versed in what it takes to call a proper pro basketball game, is going to be working the NBA Finals as a referee analyst for ESPN. And though ESPN is a corporate partner with the NBA and sometimes hesitant to criticize the league that makes it quite a bit of scratch, that shouldn't stop Steve from laying waste to what he sees before him. Or, of more interest to us, this shouldn't stop Javie from offering a needed on-camera voice of support for the NBA referees that just can't seem to win, in our eyes."

    The Basketball Jones: Oklahoma newspaper offers free James Harden beards
    "Have you always wanted a gigantic James Harden beard to honor your favorite left-handed sixth man, but don’t want to grow all that pesky facial hair? Lucky for you, the Tulsa World has a solution — cutout James Harden beards that are circulating in their dailies. Such a wonderful solution for the less hirsute among us, or for those of us whose significant others wouldn’t be OK with a small mammal hanging from our faces."

    The Basketball Jones: This bridge is sufficiently Thundered up
    "There’s always one worry when you are changing the lane structure of a portion of road — even if it is just painting a small part of a bridge outside of a team’s stadium in order to commemorate that team’s success — and it’s that things will end up like Kramer’s luxury driving experiment. But as long as these guys clean things up with nonflammable paint thinner, I think things should work out just fine."

    The Basketball Jones: Video: The Miami Heat dancing to ‘MMMBop’
    "We have all seen the clip of the Miami Heat getting their dance on following their Game 7 victory over the Boston Celtics. I think even your mom has seen it, since I saw it in her browser history when I was at her house last night. (Just kidding. I’ve never met your mom or been to her house. Sorry.) However, it’s taken a few days for us to be able to see the Heat dancing to Hanson’s seminal pop single “MMMBop,” which is too long."

    SLAM: Damian Lillard, No. 8 (Mock)
    “I’m from Oakland. Gary Payton was that kind of person, really competitive,” the 6-2, 190-pound Lillard said. “Jason Kidd, Brian Shaw. I feel I have to bring that same thing to the table as an Oakland point guard. I wand to compete and I feel I still have to prove myself playing against higher lever guys and I’m happy to have the opportunity.”

    SLAM: SLAM 2012 Finals Picks
    "I’m admittedly incapable of judging a game or series involving LeBron James without bias. I’ve taken the job of saying he’s the best player in the NBA for two straight years on this site, and I struggle to remember all the different covers I’ve put him on as E-I-C. This is because, in some order: I enjoy watching him play more than anyone in the League; I truly believe he is the best player in the League; and he’s good for business when it comes to web traffic and magazines sold. So, while I think the rightfully favored Thunder are deeper and more athletic than the Heat, and obviously in possession of a legitimate home-court advantage, I’m going to pick the Heat in a seven-game thriller. Because they have LeBron."

    ESPN: LeBron James or Kevin Durant ...
    "I've been saying this for years: Durant. For the simple fact he possesses the most attractive quality you can find in a top-10 superstar when you're building a team: Durant's willingness to commit to the program long-term, regardless of market size, if he believes in the program. OKC has never had to sweat a single day about Durant possibly fleeing via free agency. Priceless."

    ESPN: Heat-Thunder: Eric Gordon prepares for free agency
    "They've got all the cards," Gordon said. "But I wouldn't mind (going back)."

    Sports Illustrated: High stakes, contrasting styles add sizzle to James-Durant showdown
    "Everybody is going to make the most out of the matchup, or me versus LeBron,'' Durant said on the eve of Oklahoma City's opening game in the NBA Finals against James' Miami Heat on Tuesday night. "But it's the Thunder versus the Heat. One guy versus another guy, it's not going to be a one-on-one matchup to win the series. It's going to be all about the team. It's going to be fun.''

    Sports Illustrated via Times Picayunes: Report: New Orleans Hornets ‘seriously considering’ Austin Rivers in NBA Draft
    "When the New Orleans Hornets compiled their background check on 19-year-old draft prospect Austin Rivers, they didn’t need much help from their scouts. Hornets Coach Monty Williams supplied everything needed because he’s been a close family friend of Boston Coach Doc Rivers since 1994 and has known his son, Austin, since he was a toddler."

    Sporting News: NBA Draft 2012: Hornets dismiss Cavaliers' trade offer for No. 1 pick
    " The Cleveland Cavaliers have four picks in the upcoming NBA Draft—Nos. 4, 24, 33 and 34—and offered to trade all of them to the New Orleans Hornets for the No. 1 overall pick, ESPN’s Chad Ford reports (link requires ESPN Insider subscription). The Cavs were immediately rebuffed, as the Hornets obviously believe Anthony Davis is worth a lot more than that quartet of picks."


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