Posted on: November 3, 2010 4:31 pm
Edited on: November 3, 2010 6:41 pm
Kevin Garnett on Wednesday denied calling Pistons forward Charlie Villanueva "a cancer patient" in a trash-talking rant during the teams' game the night before.
“I am aware there was a major miscommunication regarding something I said on the court last night," Garnett said in a statement from his representatives released by the Celtics. "My comment to Charlie Villanueva was in fact, ‘You are cancerous to your team and our league.’ I would never be insensitive to the brave struggle that cancer patients endure. I have lost loved ones to this deadly disease and have a family member currently undergoing treatment. I would never say anything that distasteful. The game of life is far bigger than the game of basketball.”
After the Celtics beat the Pistons 109-86 Tuesday night, dropping Detroit to 0-4 and sending the team into turmoil, Villanueva wrote on his Twitter account that Garnett had called him a "cancer patient" during a trash-talking rant. Villanueva has no body hair due to a rare autoimmune disorder known as alopecea areata.
"KG talks alot of crap, he's prob never been in a fight, I would love to get in a ring with him, I will expose him," Charlie V tweeted. "KG called me a cancer patient, I'm pissed because, u know how many people died from cancer, and he's tossing it like it's a joke. I wouldn't even trip about that, but a cancer patient, I know way 2 many people who passed away from it, and I have a special place 4 those."
Moments after Garnett's statement was released Wednesday, Villanueva wrote on Twitter, " New day, moving forward, Pistons lets get a win tonight." But before the Pistons played the Hawks in Atlanta on Wednesday night, Villanueva was asked about Garnett's denial.
"I know exactly what I heard," Villanueva said, according to the Detroit Free-Press .
Posted on: July 1, 2009 7:26 pm
Edited on: July 2, 2009 1:00 am
The Detroit Pistons struck first Wednesday, getting commitments from their top two free-agent targets, Ben Gordon and Charlie Villanueva.
Posted on: July 1, 2009 7:18 pm
Edited on: July 2, 2009 2:20 am
You want buzz? How's Ron Artest playing on the same team with LeBron James and Shaquille O'Neal?
Posted on: July 1, 2009 5:08 pm
Edited on: July 1, 2009 6:46 pm
With Carlos Boozer off the free-agent market, other free agent forwards are getting ready to cash in.
While Charlie Villanueva was being courted by the Pistons, CBSSports.com has learned that restricted free agents David Lee and Paul Millsap were preparing to field offers as early as Wednesday night. Millsap, the Jazz forward who could benefit the most from Boozer deciding not to opt out of his contract, has heard from three of the four teams with significant cap space -- Oklahoma City, Memphis, and Detroit -- plus a fourth team inquiring about a sign-and-trade. Lee has heard from numerous teams, including Oklahoma City and Memphis, and was expecting inquiries to escalate into offers in the next 24 hours. Despite their focus on Wednesday's meeting at Madison Square Garden with point guard Jason Kidd, the Knicks were among the first teams to reach out to Lee's camp and expressed an interest in keeping him.
While Villanueva was seen as a strong possibility for Cleveland, which may need to replace free agent Anderson Varejao, people in contact with the Cavs' front office say Cleveland is in wait-and-see mode and appears to be strategizing for the second wave of free-agent activity.
UPDATE: OK, the wait's over. Brian Windhorst of the Plain Dealer reports that the Cavs -- and LeBron James himself -- are actively recruiting Ron Artest. There will be more developing on this front throughout the evening.
Rasheed Wallace got a visit from Celtics president Danny Ainge at his home shortly after midnight Wednesday and was getting interest from other contenders.
Like Artest (whose situation isn't directly affected by Boozer's), Lamar Odom (whose situation is) also was preparing to field offers Wednesday. The Suns and Spurs reportedly were among the teams courting Odom, while the Lakers were actively working to keep both of their unrestricted free agents, Odom and small forward Trevor Ariza.
Posted on: July 1, 2009 10:59 am
Eager to transform malaise from the salary-cap clearing Chauncey Billups trade into a new beginning, the Pistons believe they can land both Ben Gordon and Charlie Villanueva and are making their pitch on the first day of free agency, two people with knowledge of the situation confirmed to CBSSports.com.
Posted on: June 29, 2009 6:18 pm
Edited on: June 29, 2009 11:32 pm
With the stunning news that the Milwaukee Bucks decided Monday not to make a qualifying offer to Charlie Villanueva came confirmation of what we already knew: This is going to be a strange free-agent signing period in the NBA, one in which conventional wisdom need not apply.
By dumping Richard Jefferson on the Spurs, the Bucks seemed to be clearing cap space to keep restricted free agents Ramon Sessions and Villanueva. But Sessions got a qualifying offer and Villanueva didn't, making him an unrestricted free agent at midnight Wednesday.
In a league that is increasingly becoming about the haves and have-nots, one team's problem is another team's savior. Fresh off their pre-draft acquisition of Shaquille O'Neal, the Cavs are looking for a versatile big man to complement the Big Cuyahoga while at the same time not clogging the floor for LeBron James. Enter Villanueva, who would appear to be an ideal piece for GM Danny Ferry's plan of making a serious championship run this season.
When the Cavs acquired Shaq, Villanueva wrote the following on his Twitter account: "Very interesting, Shaq to Cleveland, nice, all Cleveland [needs] is a PF now."
Also in that mix is Pistons unrestricted Rasheed Wallace, who could be an attractive option for Cleveland and Orlando, among others.
The problem is, the best the Cavs could offer Villanueva is the mid-level exception of about $5.5 million. Short of that, a sign-and-trade would work, but the Cavs divested themselves of their two most tradable assets -- Ben Wallace and Sasha Pavlovic -- in the Shaq trade. The Villanueva decision also has a direct impact on the Pistons, who are among the teams with the most money to spend on free agents. Joe Dumars is believed to be targeting Carlos Boozer and/or Hedo Turkoglu. But the availability of Villanueva makes his decision a lot more interesting.
UPDATE: The Bucks' thinking behind not extending a qualifying offer to Villanueva was discussed internally at least two dozen times, a person with knowledge of the situation said. The person, who is familiar with the team's strategy, said matching Villanueva's offers as a restricted free agent -- or possibly keeping him on the one-year tender for about $4.7 million -- would've rolled back the flexibility general manager John Hammond had just achieved by trading Jefferson, who was due $29.2 million over the next two seasons.
Whereas most observers -- including rival team executives -- believed the Jefferson trade opened the door for Milwaukee to re-sign both Villanueva and Sessions, there's a chance the team won't keep either one. The organization is determined to get out of the rut caused by overpaying the likes of Bobby Simmons, Charlie Bell, and Dan Gadzuric in similar situations in the past. If the offers received by Sessions on the restricted market are fair, Milwaukee will match. If not, the team is planning to hold the line on not overpaying.
Another factor with Villanueva is that, given the economy and dearth of teams with cap space to sign free agents, the organization believes it is feasible that Villanueva won't be blown away by free-agent offers and thus would have been inclined to accept the one-year offer for $4.7 million. The Bucks didn't want to be in a position of having to rescind the non-binding qualifying offer, which would've hampered Villanueva's efforts to land a free-agent deal. Having chosen to get their financial house in order and preserve the possibility of being as much as $7 million under the cap in 2010, the Bucks' hierarchy felt it was better to be up front with Villanueva and allow him unfettered access to the free-agent market. Although a sign-and-trade technically remains an option, the Bucks aren't interested in jeopardizing their roster and cap flexibility by taking on the kind of contracts that would come back in such a deal.
Clearing up one piece of draft business: While one of the many executives who spoke with the Nets on draft night came away convinced that the team had selected Terrence Williams for someone else with the No. 11 pick, a person with knowledge of the situation said Monday that T-Will is most likely to stay in New Jersey. On the heels of trading Vince Carter in the hours before the draft, the Nets had conversations with numerous teams involving, among other things, the No. 11 pick. Nothing came to fruition, and while the Nets are still listening, it appears that Williams is staying put for now.
Posted on: March 17, 2009 6:32 pm
There was a time -- oh, about 17 days ago -- when my reaction would've been, "What's tweeting?" Now, I say to myself as I read Skiles' comments condemning this transgression, "What's the big deal?"
Skiles said Villanueva sneaking a tweet at halftime would lead "reasonable people" to conclude that he wasn't paying attention or focusing on the game.
Really? Since when do players pay attention at halftime? Aren't they all busy texting and emailing their friends? In any event, with his first full season three-fourths over, I would've guessed that Skiles' players tuned him out months ago. That's what happened to him in Chicago.
Anyway, technology is charging past me so fast that I sometimes formulate opinions I can't believe. A purist would say that players shouldn't be messing around with Twitter at halftime. They should be paying attention to the coach. But that's boring. Plus, today's players are fully capable of paying attention to the coach and texting at the same time. Today's players are multi-taskers, baby!
It's a losing battle for any coach who wants to curtail his players' texting, emailing and the like. And an impossible one to win. If Villanueva can't post on Twitter at halftime, what about all his teammates who were texting their friends, wives, and um, girlfriends?
Now you have to draw the line somewhere, and here's where I draw it: During the All-Star Game, Chris Bosh was conspicuously and constantly texting and emailing throughout the game on the East's bench. It didn't matter that he was injured and wearing a suit. That's just wrong. When you are in public view on the court, your cell phone stays in your pocket. That's just the way it is.
But what do we make of this? During halftime of the Bucks' victory over Boston Sunday, Villanueva grabbed his PDA and transmitted the following to his Twitter feed:
In da locker room, snuck to post my twitt. We're playing the Celtics, tie ball game at da half. Coach wants more toughness. I gotta step up.
Now, if there are Pulitzers for Tweeting, I think it's safe to say the other finalists are safe. But at least he did step up and deliver a team-high 19 points as the Bucks beat the listless Celtcs 86-77.
"I was very into the game -- as you can tell, the way I played," Villanueva said.
Twitter -- and much worse things that haven't been invented yet -- may very well succeed in bringing Western civilization to its knees. Until then, I don't see much wrong with tweeting a couple of thoughts at halftime. Just make it better next time.
In da locker room, snuck to post my twitt. Close game at da half. I'm about to light up Pierce for 40. No way that stiff can guard me.
Then we'd have something to tweet about.