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Around The World: August 6

  1. Written by: DHawes22

    August 6 Video: Damian Lillard: 2012 Summer League Co-MVP

    Standard-Examiner: Lillard credits time with WSU basketball coach Rahe for leadership skills
    “I want to be rookie of the year,” he said. “I want to be an All-Star in the next few years, and after that, I want to be in the Olympics in 2016.”

    Trail Blazers: The Rivals Plan: Two LAs, Oklahoma City And The Return Of Roy
    "The smallest of the four big ticket plans, the eight game Rivals Pack packs a big punch. You’ll be in the building and eating a corndog while others are wondering how to get their hands on a way to see the return of Brandon Roy and the sure to sell out L.A. Lakers and Oklahoma City Thunder."

    Trail Blazers: Why The Value Plan Makes 'Cents' For You
    "The Value Pack starts at just $5 a game. That’s 12 games for as low as $60! Talk about some serious bang for your buck. But that’s not even the best part about this ticket plan. Four of the 12 games take place in the month of January. And there is absolutely no better place to be during an Oregon winter’s night than inside the raucous Rose Garden. Not to mention this pack gets you into the arena to see some of the league’s biggest names and brightest young stars such as Dwight Howard, Dirk Nowitzki, Kyrie Irving, John Wall, and Rudy Gay."

    Trail Blazers: Big Games Plan: 12 Of The Biggest Games
    "This game has it all. Season opener, at home, against the loathe-inducing Lakers, in Steve Nash's first game in purple and gold and it's on Halloween night! Any game against the Lakers at the Rose Garden is going to be a lively one, but the confluence of circumstances in this particular game sets the stage for one of the all-time season openers in Trail Blazers history."

    Trail Blazers: Fan Blog: Damian Lillard's Rookie Expectations
    "Everyone must be excited about the Blazers new "Franchise Point Guard", Damian Lillard. What are your expectations for him this season?"

    Oregon Live: Joel Freeland helps Great Britain beat China, 90-58
    "Portland Trail Blazers forward Joel Freeland didn't log many minutes in Great Britain's 90-58 win over China on Monday, but he still found a way to make his presence felt. In just 10 minutes of play, Freeland scored 10 points on 5-of-9 shooting and pulled down 6 rebounds. His playing time was limited due to foul trouble; he quickly racked up 4 fouls trying to guard Jianlian Yi."

    Oregon Live: Trail Blazers coaching search in final stage after Paul Allen interviews Stotts, Canales
    "Canales, a young, energetic motivator, took over as interim coach in March after Nate McMillan was fired. The Blazers went 8-15 but the Blazers players - most notably cornerstones LaMarcus Aldridge, Batum and Wesley Matthews - all endorsed Canales for the permanent job. He joined the Blazers in 2004 as a video intern, but soon made a name for himself because of his work ethic and upbeat attitude. He was promoted to assistant coach in 2008 and established himself as a development coach, drilling and working out players, many times in the late hours of the night. He became especially close with Aldridge, the team’s star, who credited Canales for changing the offense to broaden his game after McMillan was fired."

    Oregon Live: Blazers' Nicolas Batum playing efficiently, leading France in scoring in Olympics
    "In his next four games, Batum averaged 19.2 points and 6.8 rebounds. For the Olympics, Batum is averaging 16.8 points, 5.8 rebounds, 1.6 blocks and 1.0 steals. He has moved passed San Antonio All-Star point guard Tony Parker (15.8 points) as France's leading scorer."

    Oregon Live via Associated Press: Olympic men's basketball: Patty Mills' game-winner lifts Australia over Russia
    "Patty Mills' 3-pointer with time expiring gave Australia an 82-80 win over Russia in the men's Olympic basketball tournament on Monday."

    Rip City Project: Is the Current Portland Trail Blazers’ Roster Enough?
    "The Blazers’ front office, before and during Olshey’s tenure, have also done a great job of ridding the team of its so-called cancers. Marcus Camby was dished off to the Rockets, now with the Knicks; Greg Oden’s oft-injured self was released, Jamal Crawford opted out and signed with the Clippers, Raymond Felton was sent to the Knicks in a sign-and-trade for Jared Jeffries, and Gerald Wallace, who I viewed as an asset, was dealt to the now-Brooklyn Nets in return for the pick that landed Lillard in Portland."

    Blazersedge: Was Brandon Roy an Offense-Killing Ball Hog?
    "In short, looking at the statistics it's difficult to see how Roy was hurting his team, depriving his teammates, hogging the ball, or killing the offense. The "revisionist history" here is remembering his final go-around with the team--limping up the court, eating clock because of immobility, putting up fade-away jumpers--and projecting that back through his entire Portland career. It just wasn't so. Once upon a time Brandon Roy was undeniably, unabashedly great as an individual and for this team. Yes, he got touches, but others did too...including Aldridge. At the end of the day nobody did as much with them, or did so much for the Blazers, as Roy did."

    Salt Lake Tribune: Interview — Blazers' Damian Lillard returns to roots, gives back to Weber State fans
    "Yeah, I've spoke to him like another teammate. We have each other's phone numbers and we text and we talk. Right now, all we want to do is get in the playoffs. That's the been the main thing we've talked about, is trying to get into the playoffs, because everybody is counting us as a young team. It might take us one or two years. But we saying, 'Why not right now?' Look at Oklahoma City: People said the same thing about them. Maybe not the championship, but why not make the playoffs now? We on the same page as far as winning."

    Ball Don't Lie: Matt Barnes’ alleged resisting arrest charges might be a bit of a reach, literally
    "The TMZ report goes on to mention that the officer declined to arrest Barnes 15 minutes after he entered the restaurant, when Barnes passed by the officer on his way to retrieve something from his car. And that the police officer waited a full two hours before pouncing on Barnes a few minutes after he left the restaurant, and a few minutes into an autograph session with fans."

    Ball Don't Lie: Nets owner Mikhail Prokhorov may be planning to rap with Jay-Z at Barclays Center
    "For one thing, he owns (part of) the place, so it's not like anyone will tell him he can't. For another, when you drop $340 million in combined salary over the course of one offseason, you're entitled to at least one public appearance during which a crowd of excited onlookers applaud you for making it rain on what has been a talent-parched Nets roster. Seems like the least the legions of new-look Nets fans could do would be to let him kick a few bars."

    Ball Don't Lie: New Orlando Magic Jacque Vaughn wants Glen Davis to show up in shape
    "This might seem like a joke, because he was listed last season at a not-exactly-trim 289 pounds. And while that number is very high, it's not exactly atypical — it was his official mark in 2008-2009, as well. In fact, that means that Davis' weight probably holds steady in the official listings, and that 289 might even be a conservative figure. In which case, even at his most svelte, Davis is never going to be a physical specimen."

    The Basketball Jones via Los Angeles Weekly: Is there ever a good reason to get an ‘I Slept with Shaq’ tattoo on your forehead?
    "[The] tattoo across his forehead truly seals his gonzo credentials. Removing his Raiders cap, he displays it, sprawled in oddly formal cursive: “I Slept With Shaq.” He got the ink during a contest for Lakers NBA Finals tickets in 2001, a challenge presented by Power morning-show DJ Big Boy. Gonzalez showed the handiwork to Shaq — who was impressed — and Big Boy soon gave him a job at the station."

    The Basketball Jones: Things have changed for Jimmer Fredette and Justin Timberlake
    "One of the best things about Justin Timberlake’s hair — and there are oh so many wonderful things about it that a curly-haired fellow could steal for himself, not that that has ever happened, I’m just saying I can see the logistics behind it, which I think we can all agree is only natural — is that it serves as a kind of carbon-dating service for things that have happened in his life from the mid-1990′s on. For instance, just by looking at this picture that Jimmer Fredette posted on Twitter of him and Timberlake, we can tell that it’s probably from 1997, since that’s what Justin’s hair looked like on the cover of ‘N Sync’s debut album. Not that I knew that off the top of my head or anything."

    The Basketball Jones: James Harden says he didn’t get crossed over against Nigeria
    "Yesterday and this morning, we all saw with our own two eyes — or one, no offense pirates/cyclopes — James Harden getting crossed over by Nigerian point guard Tony Skinn. In an 83-point game, it was the only non-uniform related blemish on Team USA’s victory. Not a big deal, just kind of funny. Except now James Harden is trying to say he didn’t get crossed over when he totally did. Check out this interaction he had with J.R. Smith on Twitter, a microblogging service."

    DIME: Report: Kenyon Martin Considering Nets, Lakers
    "Martin’s free agency is particularly interesting, if only because of the domino-type effect of free agency. First, we saw it with Deron Williams and Steve Nash – as soon as they signed with Brooklyn and Los Angeles, respectively, other teams’ plans changed and the future of second-tier point guards began to unfold. While Martin may not be that caliber of player anymore, his lengthy free agency is holding up the contracts of others veteran bigs, including Joel Przybilla and Jermaine O’Neal."

    SLAM via Time-Picayune: Robin Lopez Underwent Left Knee Surgery
    “Center Robin Lopez, who the New Orleans Hornets acquired in a trade from the Phoenix Suns on July 27, underwent successful surgery Saturday to correct a tear of his medial meniscus in his left knee. The procedure was performed by Dr. El Attrache at the Kerlan Jobe Clinic in Los Angeles. Lopez, 7 feet, is expected to make a full recovery and be ready for training camp this fall. "

    SLAM via Yahoo!: Kobe Bryant Thinks it Would Be ‘Natural’ to End His Career in Europe
    “It would be natural for me to go do it. It wouldn’t be a stretch at all. I grew up here.” Bryant plans to play out the final two years of his Lakers contract and reassess everything. He’s still performing on an All-Star level, and his knees are holding up with his 34th birthday approaching this month. As the son of Italian League star Joe Bryant, he lived in Italy for several years as a child. His memories of Italy’s pro league plush, Bryant still gushes over witnessing the scoring genius of Brazilian star Oscar Schmidt in Italy."

    SLAM via Salt Lake Tribune: Paul Millsap Not Interested in Extension from Jazz, to Become a Free Agent?
    “The sturdy six-year veteran was offered a three-year extension worth about $25 million, which is the maximum extension Millsap can receive under the new collective bargaining agreement. The proposed deal features an annual 7.5 percent raise, would kick in after Millsap’s current contract expires June 2013, and could keep the career Jazzman in a Utah uniform through June 2016. Initial indications are Millsap won’t agree to the extension, though, preferring to enter free agency in 2013 with plans to cash in on an inflated 2012 market that saw mid-tier forwards such as Gerald Wallace, Andrei Kirilenko, Nicolas Batum and Ryan Anderson recently receive lucrative multiyear contracts."

    ESPN: Time To Step Up
    "In retrospect, Johnson was pretty clearly a reach at No. 4 in the 2010 draft, especially considering he went right before two big men who are likely future All-Stars, DeMarcus Cousins and Greg Monroe. Despite his advanced age for a rookie (23) in 2010-11, Johnson did not impress at either end of the floor, and he followed that up with a sophomore campaign that can be described only as atrocious, putting up an 8.0 PER and ranking in the bottom quarter of NBA players according to Regularized Plus/Minus."

    Sports Illustrated: Notebook: Thunder GM sees benefit of having his players at Olympics
    "Just the level of mental endurance that Kevin and Russell have been exposed to and conditioned themselves to, I think has really helped us in our playoff series. That's a real benefit. I think Serge's experiences with the national team, again just being in different situations and adjusting to different styles of play, I only makes him a more well-rounded player. And James now is also getting that level of experience. I really feel like we've benefited from all of the exposures that the players have been given, and I think they're all very grateful for the opportunity too. It's fun to watch them in these situations."

    Sports Illustrated: Offseason has left number of potential contenders at risk of disappointment
    "Still, using the full mid-level exception on shooting guard Jamal Crawford just feels like the classic appeasement of a star free-agent-to-be (point guard Chris Paul) — the use of the only major weapon in the team’s offseason arsenal on a known commodity popular around the league, with a false reputation as a clutch shooter. There had to be a more creative use of resources here. Chasing Courtney Lee or Lou Williams would have been an obvious path. But with Evans, Chauncey Billups, Gomes and two small deals (Trey Thompkins, Travis Leslie), the Clippers could have butted their way into some crazy sign-and-trade — a Jarrett Jack/Gustavo Ayon package from the Hornets, something from the desperately active Timberwolves, something with the wheeling Rockets, Delonte West on the cheap, etc."

    Sports Illustrated: With quarterfinals on the horizon, U.S. isn't looking past Argentina
    "It's a mid-range jumper for a lot of our guys," LeBron James said of the shorter three-point line at the Olympics. "We want them to step up and shoot, but we also want to have a little bit of balance, too. That's where me and [Russell] Westbrook come into play -- we're kind of the penetrating guys on this team, we want to get into the lane. But we are great shooters, and we can't tell them don't take shots when they're open."

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