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Around The World: June 20

  1. Written by: DHawes22

    June 20

    Trail Blazers: Mock Draft Database

    Draft Express: Pre-Draft Measurements Video: June 20 Pre-Draft Workouts Video: Tony Wroten Pre-Draft Workout Video: Terrence Ross Pre-Draft Workout Video: Austin Rivers Pre-Draft Workout Video: Kendall Marshall Pre-Draft Workout Video: Moe Harkless Pre-Draft Workout

    Trail Blazers: Where Does The Promise Lie With Dion Waiters? Anyone? Bueller?
    "hortly before the Chicago draft combine, Ford tweeted that Waiters had cancelled all workouts. There was speculation of a promise that was made to his agent by a team in the lottery and the three suspects were the Phoenix Suns, Portland Trail Blazers, and Toronto Raptors. From there, it’s been a game of cat and mouse with fans, media, and draft pundits alike all trying to decipher who made the promise as well as why it was made."

    Trail Blazers: Arvydas Sabonis Goes USO
    "But let's take a quick break from all the draft talk to enjoy this terrific photo gallery of Arvydas Sabonis visiting the Rukla Military Base in Lithuania. There's Classic Sabonis looking at items inquisitively, in the case above, an assault rifle (which is seemingly one of his favorite pastimes). "

    Trail Blazers: Change The Dictionary
    "At a press conference about a year ago, Duke Coach Mike Krzyzewski responded to a question about his position players by stating that he didn’t have guards and forwards, he had basketball players. If that’s good enough for Krzyzewski, it’s good enough for me."

    Oregon Live: A look at the Blazers' draft workout participants, headlined by Kendall Marshall and Austin Rivers
    "A first-team all-Atlantic Coast Conference selection after he averaged 15.5 points, becoming third Duke freshman to lead the team in scoring. Was the seventh freshman to gain first-team all-ACC recognition. Most mock drafts project him as a mid- to low-lottery pick. Is the son of Boston Celtics coach Doc Rivers. NBA scouting report describes him as a "pure scorer who can create his own shot off the dribble or pull up from deep" and as an "exceptional ball-handler with a great crossover move."

    Oregon Live: Blazers draft workout: For Terrence Ross, Wednesday's session is home, sweet home
    “The biggest thing about it is not having to stay in the hotel,” Ross said. “I can just stay at home. That was a big part. All my family seeing me before I get to work out for the Blazers, that’s like a dream.”

    Oregon Live: 2012 NBA draft: Should the Trail Blazers draft Arnett Moultrie? (poll)
    "I'm definitely the sleeper of the draft," Moultrie said after a recent workout for the Pistons. "But that's fine, they can sleep on me. I've been a sleeper all my life."

    Rip City Project: Should Blazers Draft Dion Waiters At No. 11?
    "While he would be an incredible talent pick-up, how he would fit in, or disrupt the rotation at this point is a cause for concern. Though he did take a step back after his breakout sophomore season, Wesley Matthews is a lights-out shooter, and an above average defender. And though Elliot Williams played less than 10 minutes per game last season, all Blazers fans know his potential, as either a starter or sixth man, is through the roof. He’s poised for a highlight season very soon, maybe even 2012-13."

    Blazersedge: Tony Wroten Talks Brandon Roy
    "I've been working out with Brandon back home this offseason. You wouldn't tell he hurt his knee. He's back like his old self, maybe better."

    Blazersedge: Transcript: Duke G Austin Rivers Works Out For Blazers On Wednesday
    "I just feel like I best fit those teams. My agent obviously helped me with that... I feel like I can fit any team honestly. The teams that I worked out for are really good fits. I love Portland. I love it up here. I have a lot of friends already on the team. I just met Wesley [Matthews] today. I've already known Elliot [Williams] and obviously Nolan [Smith] and I are really cool. I just think they have a really nice backcourt here. I can handle the ball, create for other players, spot up and shoot. Stuff like that. I think Portland is a good fit."

    Blazersedge: Transcript: UNC PG Kendall Marshall Works Out For Blazers On Wednesday
    "It's hard to say I model my game after anyone. I feel like I have a very unique game. I do try to steal certain skills from other people's games. Steve Nash, with the bounce pass. The way [Rajon] Rondo uses ball fakes, I feel I can incorporate that into my game."

    Ball Don't Lie: Behind the Box Score, where the Miami Heat are one win away from a title
    "Of course Russell Westbrook drops 43 brilliant points in Oklahoma City's Game 4 loss, keeping his team from getting blown out by double-digits along the way. And of course Westbrook — or some combination of Westbrook and the either silent or unlistened-to Thunder coaching staff — put the game away for Miami by intentionally fouling Mario Chalmers with 14 seconds left in the contest and just five seconds on the Heat shot clock. Of course LeBron James develops a debilitating leg cramp in the fourth quarter to gut through for a massive three-pointer, and of course he had to sit the last minute with that leg cramp or else the Heat would have been playing four on five. Of course, the Thunder played four on five for a good chunk of the game with Kendrick Perkins, Thabo Sefolosha or even, surprisingly, James Harden out there."

    Ball Don't Lie: Washington deals away its potential cap flexibility, and Rashard Lewis, to New Orleans for Emeka Okafor and Trevor Ariza
    "What's the deal? As first reported by Draft Express' Jonathan Givony, the Wizards will send Rashard Lewis to the Hornets along with the 46th pick in next week's draft for sturdy center Emeka Okafor and shot-happy defender Trevor Ariza. And if this deal, the first NBA transaction since last March's trade deadline, seems weird on paper — it gets a whole lot weirder on NBA-supplied parchment. Because the amnesty provisions and salary machinations behind this sort of swap turn things into a complicated yet intriguing mess that only the NBA could provide."

    Ball Don't Lie: Kendrick Perkins just doesn’t ‘understand’ why Oklahoma City goes away from the lineup featuring him at center
    "This was a vent, after yet another close loss that could have gone either way, with Perkins again probably thinking that his presence on the floor may have swung the game. Kendrick has played just six minutes combined in each of the Finals' fourth quarters, with all but 12 seconds of that run coming in Game 3. And he doesn't like the pattern. And, because he cares, it's understandable and we should let him vent. Even if he'd modify his comments after toweling off during an off day between games."

    Ball Don't Lie: The Charlotte Bobcats have new uniforms
    "If the first thing the "Cats" shortening made you think of was, "Well, that's a nice symbolic sayonara to Robert Johnson" — the original owner of the franchise, after whom the Bobcats were named (well, kind of) and who sold the team to Michael Jordan in February 2010 — then you are not alone; I thought that, too. But team president Fred Whitfield told Bonnell that the shortening is "not purposefully" about Johnson, that it is "about brand identity" and intended to reflect what Charlotte fans actually call the team during games. (I guess "WAIT WHY DID YOU DO THAT, OH MAN, YOU GUYS ARE THE WORST" wouldn't fit on the front.)"

    The Basketball Jones: Raymond Felton uses his basketball camp to take a shot at bloggers
    "But even if it’s just the boring revenge angle, that’s still funny. Not only is his career-high just 35 points, he’s also coming off a season where he posted his lowest career PER, shot 40 percent from the field and 30 percent from three. Threatening to drop 50 after a season like that is like M. Night Shyamalan bragging that his next twist ending is going to blow your mind after releasing “The Village,” “Lady in the Water” and “The Happening” in consecutive order. We don’t believe you, you need more shots made."

    The Basketball Jones: The 2000′s NBA draft remix
    "Aldridge turned into the franchise player most thought he could be when coming out of Texas and is one of the better bigs in the game. Rondo started out as a role player for the Big Three in Boston, but has become better than them in value and is one of the best overall point guards in the NBA. Gay can definitely score and can be an important piece for the Grizzlies, but when they made a strong playoff run sans Gay last year, his importance came into question. However, with potential new ownership, Gay may be too important to trade. Millsap only needed some burn to handle business. In the past two seasons with starter-type minutes, Millsap has been putting up the stats. Bargnani is the typical Euro big man that likes to work from the outside, and while he can shoot, what else can he do?"

    The Basketball Jones: Some zombie Sonics fans showed up to last night’s Finals game
    "Again, totes zombies, this time showing off some clever logo manipulation. That “Beat OKC” sign on the left is pretty great. They should have sold t-shirts with that design on it. People would definitely blog about it."

    ESPN: Down 17 in the first, how did Miami come back once again?
    "Because of LeBron James. We hadn't seen facilitation and game control of this magnitude from James in months. There's just no way to guard him in the post when he makes all of his tools available. Put it this way: In the second-quarter rally, Norris Cole, James Jones, Chris Bosh, Dwyane Wade and Mario Chalmers were all recipients of a James assist. James is like no other."

    ESPN: Magic tab Rob Hennigan as GM
    "Rob is an astute strategist and evaluator of talent who comes to the Magic family from two championship-level organizations," Orlando Magic chief executive officer Alex Martins said. "We feel he is an outstanding fit and the right choice to lead our basketball operations team in achieving our championship goals."

    Sports Illustrated: Sullinger's agent downplays report of prospect being 'red flagged'
    "Jared has consulted with one of the foremost specialists of backs and spines, who has vast experience treating professional athletes," Falk told "He has explained to us that Jared had extremely tight hamstrings that became tight because he had suffered an injury that I don't think he was aware of to his hamstring. He needs to maintain vigilance with his flexibility. And if he does that, and keeps his weight at an appropriate level, then he should have absolutely no problems over the next 15 years."

    Sports Illustrated: Who's the No. 2 draft prospect: Beal, Kidd-Gilchrist or Robinson?
    "Although he's undersized [6-7 ¾, without shoes], he has a big wingspan [7-3¼] and has good-sized hands. He has great feet, which will allow him to get to the rim from the elbow, or out of the mid-post. He will be able to make the 17-foot jump shot. Great body, excellent runner, had the second fastest three-quarter court sprint at the combine Chicago. Good motor overall."

    Sports Illustrated: The evolution of a star, and a team
    "By my count, James used a whopping 19 possessions on post-up plays in Miami’s 104-98 victory in Game 4 on Tuesday. The Heat scored 24 points on those possessions, an off-the-charts scoring rate of better than 125 points per 100 possessions. And that undersells the impact of James’ post game and the mere threat of his backing down a defender all the way from the three-point line. Those 24 points do not count the James-assisted three-pointer that Norris Cole hit at the end of of the first quarter, when Kevin Durant crept off Cole in the corner to patrol a possible LeBron back-down up top. They don’t count the free throws that LeBron hit when Fisher rammed into him on what was clearly setting up to be a James post-up play. They don’t count Bosh’s basket at the rim late in the second quarter, a second-chance possession that Miami was afforded only because of all the attention James drew in the post that allowed Bosh to sneak in for an offensive rebound, draw a foul and earn his team an out-of-bounds restart."


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