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Around The World: August 23

08/23/12
  1. Written by: DHawes22

    August 23



    Trail Blazers: Damian Lillard All Over NBA Rookie Survey
    "The results are always an interesting read, and even more so when our rookies make the list, as Damian Lillard does numerous times. Meyers Leonard and Will Barton get in there too, but Lillard gets the majority of the love among Trail Blazers rookies."

    Trail Blazers: Thorpe: Why Damian Lillard Could Win Rookie Of The Year
    "I would agree completely that Lillard's more polished coming out of the collegiate ranks than Westbrook as Russ was viewed as somewhat of a raw prospect and Dame had four years in school (albeit only playing three due to a medical redshirt) compared to his two. But more polished than No. 1 overall pick and Rookie of the Year Derrick Rose? That's some serious praise. Yes, Lillard is 22 coming into his rookie campaign versus Rose's 19, but D-Rose led his Memphis Tigers all the way to the National Championship Game as a true freshman. If Lillard comes anywhere close to Rose's rookie averages of 16.8 points, 6.3 assists, 3.9 rebounds per game than Rip City is in very good hands for the foreseeable future with Damian Lillard running the show."

    ESPN: Uni Watch: Blazers Rank No. 48 On Best Uniforms In Sports List
    "A handful of NBA teams have worn diagonal stripes over the years, but the Blazers are the only team currently employing that concept. It works -- here's hoping they never move away from it. Fun fact: The Blazers' pinwheel logo is a graphic representation of a five-on-five basketball game. It's also one of the few logos in the league that doesn't include a depiction of a basketball."

    ESPN: Breaking down ROY candidates
    "Lillard showed us all during the Las Vegas summer league games that he is among the most talented point guards to enter the league in the past five seasons. He is even more polished than Derrick Rose and Russell Westbrook, when they first arrived in the NBA, yet more explosive than most any other of the previous rookie point guards that we have seen."

    Pro Basketball Talk: NBA Summer Power Rankings: Free agency moves Lakers up
    "They have a couple quality young pieces — LaMarcus Aldridge and Nicolas Batum — and Damian Lillard is my guy for Rookie of the Year (Anthony Davis probably wins but he is too obvious). But it’s a rebuilding process and it will take some time."

    SB Nation: Anthony Davis Is Not A Rookie Of The Year Shoo-In
    "But in my opinion, the real dark horse challenger to Davis other than Beal or Waiters and based on this mini-study of what makes a R.O.Y. is Damian Lillard, the No. 6 pick. Lillard is known for his scoring -- he averaged 24 points per game (in 34 minutes) at Weber State last season, and was at 19 ppg as a sophomore. At Summer League, he upped that to 26 points per game. In Portland, he'll be the undisputed No. 1 point guard, and will be sharing shots with LaMarcus Aldridge (a 21-ppg scorer) and Nicolas Batum (a sub-15 guy). Lillard is going to score. He might even join Blake Griffin, Tyreke Evans, Kevin Durant, 'Melo and LeBron as the only 20-ppg rookies of the past decade. All of those 20-ppg rookies, by the way, won R.O.Y., excepting 'Melo, who lost to the 20-ppg LeBron."

    Canada Basketball: Jay Triano Named Head Coach Of The Canadian Senior Men's National Team
    I know that Jay is the right man for this job,” declared Nash. “He is a confirmed and respected leader in the basketball community and he has the experience and knowledge to lead us towards our goal of becoming one of the leading basketball nations.”

    Trail Blazers: Blog Contest: Which Ticket Plan Is Right For You?
    "Do you prefer the marquee matchups the Big Games Plan entails, the bang for your buck the Value Plan provides, seeing rivalries old and new, rekindled with the Rivals Plan, or maybe your schedule dictates that the Weekend Plan is the option for you? Blog about which ticket plan you would choose and why. If your blog is chosen as the best, you’ll be the new recipient of two, lower-bowl tickets to ANY Trail Blazers home game this season!"

    Ball Don't Lie: Players We Want Back: Kobe Bryant
    "What we "want back" from Kobe has little to do with on-court production, or bottom-line scouting. He's going to give us those numbers no matter what, even if Bryant goes for stretches as the fourth option in an offense featuring Steve Nash, Pau Gasol and Dwight Howard. No, what we "want back" from Kobe is the barely-beer-buying-legal spark that told him it was cool to ring up then-Chicago Bulls assistant coach Tex Winter during the NBA's previous lockout year in 1999. The one that had him reaching out to someone over three times his age just to chat about how the triangle offense worked."

    Ball Don't Lie: Serge Ibaka was very upset during Olympics, ‘will not return’ to Spanish team without increased role
    "It's understandable for Ibaka to bristle at having played just 121 total minutes in Spain's eight games — an average of 15.2 per contest in the 40-minute FIBA game, two minutes per game fewer than he averaged during Spain's gold-medal run at EuroBasket 2011 — but put those minutes into context. They ranked third among Spanish frontcourt players behind Pau Gasol (227) and Marc Gasol (209); he played more than longtime national-team stalwart and former Spanish League MVP Felipe Reyes, as well he should have. But he didn't play more than the Gasols, which makes sense, or Spain's key guards and wings, which makes sense."

    Ball Don't Lie: Kobe Bryant’s 81-point game against the Raptors was fueled by pepperoni pizza
    "A brief fact check: Kobe was 27 when he popped for 81. A brief laugh: Kobe says he "once had pepperoni pizza before scoring 81 points" like he has to clarify which 81-point performance he's talking about, like there's been more than one. A brief dap: It's great to hear that Kobe is, or at least was, a proud member of #TeamPizza. We are many; we are legion."

    Ball Don't Lie: Players We Want Back: Kevin Martin
    "He could just come out and fire away a lot. The Rockets are rebuilding, but with so many strange parts running behind Jeremy Lin and McHale running the show even this odd collective could turn out to be one of the NBA's most entertaining watches. And even though we've been watching Martin's off-ball machinations for years, and there aren't a lot of wrinkles to make new again, that's not what we're after. We're after potency at the shooting guard position, something that's rarer and rarer in today's NBA save for outposts in Los Angeles and Miami."

    Ball Don't Lie: Players We Want Back: Chauncey Billups
    "This is how it's always been with Chauncey. He came of age during a time where advanced statistics were creating a new way to look at unique players, and Chauncey's hybrid guard play has always been both unique and effective. The inside the arc shooting, there can be no doubt, was not good. Borderline Kirk Hinrich-levels, here. The comeback is that Billups also shot 38 percent from behind the arc, a shot he tossed up more often than his two-point attempts. And despite legs that had trudged through over 1100 combined regular and postseason contests entering his first year in Los Angeles, Chauncey still managed to get to the line five and a half times per 36 minutes of play, while shooting his Billups-typical 89 percent from the charity stripe."

    DIME: The 10 NBA Players Who Need To Be In A Movie Next
    "I’m not James Lipton of Inside the Actors Studio, but Allen seems to be the kind of rare personality who could fill a spectrum of roles. Playing a variation of Jim Carrey‘s role in Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind could be a genius stroke, though Simon Pegg‘s roles could be a solid fit, too. Pegg plays odd characters who don’t quite fit into their surroundings, yet whose awkwardness is punctuated by shows of relevatory brilliance. It’s true that description fits Allen’s Twitter account to a T, but I think he could translate perfectly to the screen — and I’m guessing he’s got killer comedic timing to seal the deal. One thing hovers over these aforementioned parts: The need for self-discovery. If that’s a concern, Allen has answered this call only recently. Would also have been a perfect fit for The Hangover‘s Allen if Zach Galifianakis had backed out, or as Chris Tucker‘s lead in Rush Hour."

    DIME: Dime Q&A: John Jenkins On His Vandy Career And Becoming The Next Ray Allen
    "I got a Range Rover. But with my first check I’m gonna buy my mom a car, that’s probably about it. I’m a very cheap person. For me to get a Range Rover was saying a lot for me, I won’t spend too much on anything."

    DIME: The 10 Free Agents of 2013 Whose Next Season Is Make-Or-Break
    "Three seasons in, Maynor watched the Thunder make an NBA Finals run without him as he rehabbed the right ACL tear he suffered nine games into last season. With Reggie Jackson nipping at his heels now as the team’s best backup, Maynor has to show he can be the kind of player whose responsible play got him into the league’s top 10 in assist-to-turnover ratio his first two seasons. Being one of the NBA’s best backup point guards is auditioning to be a future starter for a downtrodden team, all of which is within his grasp if he can still play at full strength. It’s especially true at Oklahoma City, where an apprenticeship behind Westbrook can lead to a bidding war if it goes well. The good: He has a longer season to make the comeback and more time between games to stay healthy. The bad: Jackson played very well in Summer League, averaging 15 points per game and showing explosive athleticism. Maynor can keep his value high by continuing to be a defensive stopper, while scoring in bunches during his time on the floor could push his value beyond the estimate below."

    SLAM: Royce White, The Writer
    "For me, I just want to go out and work hard and provide what I can provide for the team, no matter how heavy or limited the load is that is impressed upon me by the coaching staff. As far as the rest of the roster being young, I think it’s a great chance for us to growth together and kind of form our own identity as a team."

    SLAM via Washington Post: Washington Wizards Worked Out Martell Webster
    “Webster appeared in 47 games last season, starting in 26, and averaged 6.9 points and 3.6 rebounds. He shot a career-low 33.9 percent from long distance. Minnesota bought out Webster for $600,000 so that they could avoid paying him $5.7 million next season and use the available money to make an offer sheet to restricted free agent Nicolas Batum, who wound up returning to Portland. ESPN.com first reported the workout for Webster, but a league source added that the team has watched a few free agents in Washington and elsewhere to see if there is a need to add another player to the current 13-man roster. They are about $3 million under the salary cap but are seeking to fill out the roster with players on minimum salaries.”

    ESPN Chicago: Dwyane Wade: Tough to top Jordan
    "He's one that we haven't seen, with the makeup of a 6-8 guy who runs as fast as any point guard, jumps as high as any center, and has the ability that he has to do so many things. But Michael Jordan is the greatest player of all time, that's who everyone shoots for. So it's going to be hard to surpass that."

    ESPN: Kings deny Virginia report
    "The Kings have been approached by numerous cities interested (in) buying the team and relocating it," Kings spokesman Eric Rose said to CBS13 in an email. "We are not going to discuss which cities have approached the team and are not going to comment on every rumor. I can tell you that the Kings are 100 percent focused on putting a winning team on the court."

    ESPN: Forecast: '12-13 Most Valuable Player
    "LeBron James. Kevin Durant. Kobe Bryant. Who will be the league MVP in 2012-13?"

    Sports Illustrated: Checking in on Rose, Howard and other NBA players on the mend
    "A source with knowledge of Rose's recovery said he's "coming along great" in what has been a five-days-per-week routine in Los Angeles. His upper body is stronger than ever before while he's slowly strengthening his lower body as well. Rose, the source said, is expected to take part in some light on-court activity soon for the first time since his May 12 surgery. The silver lining here is that Rose is doing the sort of strength work and resistance training that he may never have done if he hadn't been hurt like this. The hope is that he comes back even stronger and with the area around his left knee reinforced in such a way that it helps prevent a reoccurrence."

    Trail Blazers: Weekend Plan: Specially Designed For Families And The Busy Nine-To-Fiver
    "Built for the family-oriented fan with a busy work-week, the 12-game Weekend Pack maximizes the thrill-factor while keeping the competitions to Friday, Saturday and Sunday. A smattering of Western Conference rivals and Eastern Conference visitors during one-offs and key home stands, you can get your hands on this schedule-friendly pack for as low as $11/game and $52/game in the lower bowl."

    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."

           



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