Tag:Miami Heat
Posted on: August 17, 2010 3:37 pm
Edited on: August 17, 2010 8:14 pm
 

Melo leaving a familiar trail

As Ken Berger reports on the latest developments in Carmelo Anthony's exit strategy, a familiar pattern is forming, one that we saw played out over the past year in Cleveland.
Posted by Matt Moore




CBSSports.com's Ken Berger brought news last week that Carmelo Anthony was angling for a move to New York, that the situation was (according to a close source to him), "perfect for him." Now ESPN's Ric Bucher has echoed that report, stating that Carmelo is "likely" to go , and that it is a question of when, not if, Anthony will depart the Nuggets. Denver fans are holding themselves to the same mantra we heard from Raptors fans last summer and Cleveland fans as recently as June, that no reports can be trusted and that their star player can't find a better situation than the one he's in now.

But the situation is gaining steam , not dying down. The Denver Post reports today that the Nuggets are starting to evaluate options in parting ways with Melo and getting some level of return. And it would appear those avenues are starting to open and become more varied as well.

Today KB reports the following to the F&R Blog via email in the evolving Melo-camp discussions:

Anthony's hesitation to sign a three-year, $65 million extension with the Nuggets goes beyond his desire to enjoy the major-market exposure and pressure that LeBron James and Dwyane Wade turned down this summer. Melo would accept other destinations as well, and the Magic are believed to be at the top of his list along with the Knicks, according to a person familiar with his strategy.

The exit strategy began taking shape last week, while Anthony was in New York for Nike's World Basketball Festival. It was then, according to the source, that Nuggets management was advised to begin exploring trade possibilities for Anthony to avoid losing him as a free agent and getting nothing in return. When Denver fills its vacant GM position, the likely choice, former Suns executive David Griffin, will inherit a crisis similar to the one he endured with Amar'e Stoudemire, who left the Suns for a five-year, $99.9 million deal with the Knicks.


The short-and-long? Melo wants out of Denver, and onto a title contender, and wants it now. Not in free agency. Now. And any questions as to whether that's the case don't need to be answered by off-record sources. The evidence and a little deductive logic speaks for itself.

The most prominent response from skeptics as to if this is really Melo's desire is "Why hasn't he just said so?" And the answer is pretty simple. He already has. Just because he hasn't publicly demanded a trade, costing himself fine money and damaging his image, doesn't mean the evidence isn't right there. There's a three-year, $65 million offer from the Nuggets just waiting for him to sign it. The lack of Carmelo's signature on the dotted line isn't in and of itself a declaration that the Nuggets are off the table. But if they were what he wanted, why not just sign it? The money's there. He's been there, has friends there. It's hard to believe the Nuggets are actually holding out in offering Anthony something he wants. Whatever he's looking for, they'll oblige.

So what's he waiting for?

It's the same question I asked myself last year as Cleveland fans repeatedly told me that James had no interest in leaving. That he loved Cleveland and there was no way he would depart, would abandon them. I always walked away from these exchanges with the same question.

"Okay, then, so why hasn't he? What's he waiting for?"

A simple public statement "I look forward to finishing my career in Cleveland." Or, "We'll sit down with Dan Gilbert and Danny Ferry and get to work on the deal . It may take some time, but it'll get done." He could have still entered free agency to maintain leverage to make sure he wasn't short-changed in any regard (who's going to short-change LeBron James?). All he had to do was make those kinds of public commitments and the media wouldn't have embarked on the 100-ring circus we set up. Don't put the goat in the exhibit and expect the T-Rex will stay out of sight.

And just as James never provided those kinds of assurances, always dancing around the subject, saying "We're going to go through the process" and "I love the fans in Cleveland," Anthony's embarked upon the same careful footwork. "There is no timeline" is the new "Cleveland has the edge." And the parallels don't stop there. The Cavaliers panicked when it looked like James was unhappy with Cavs management over their ability to build a roster around him, and fired head coach Mike Brown and came to a separation with Danny Ferry. Sound familiar? Denver dropped both Mark Warkentian and Rex Chapman, both of whom were held in high regard in NBA circles.

Oh, and who is Anthony's agent again?

Oh, that's right. Leon Rose. LeBron's agent and representative for CAA, which also employs William Wesley. If we were in the Matrix, the cat would have walked by twice by now and asked for the Nuggets to fly to New York to pitch Anthony using PowerPoint.

I'm not the first to say there's smoke in regards to this here fire. Chris Dempsey of the Denver Post laid out the remaining circumstantial evidence , including Anthony's sale of a Colorado estate and his East Coast upbringing (though Anthony was raised in Baltimore, he was born in New York; you're going to be hearing that fact about seven hundred zillion more times in the foreseeable future). But there's one more factor that seems to tie this whole mess of speculation and prediction together.

The discussion has been hard and heavy that Anthony's torn between the allure of a new team in free agency and wanting the financial security provided under this (presumably more player-favorable) CBA agreement. The idea was simple. Anthony wants the money, first and foremost, and for that he needs to stay in Denver. But that's only if he enters free agency. If Anthony were to be traded to a new team, that team could then extend him under the current CBA. And that feeds into the last connection between Anthony and the Miami Triad. The allure of getting everything you want, how you want it. With a trade, Anthony can find himself in a new location in title contention, and get the extension he wants. It's the best of all worlds.

The age of players having to simply accept their respective situations may be ending. If Carmelo Anthony can find a way to escape to a major market, joining a top team to contend and get the financial security of the current CBA, we'll have seen the latest manifest of the players' power in the modern NBA.

It's Denver's move. And how the next six months play out could speak volumes as to the fate of their franchise. It will also reaffirm the impact of what went on this summer in free agency, and how the landscape has changed.

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Posted on: August 17, 2010 10:01 am
Edited on: August 17, 2010 2:55 pm
 

LeBron speaks and a look into 'The Decision'

 Posted by Royce Young

Since "The Decision" really all we've heard or seen from LeBron is him being heckled or booed at an appearance. He didn't speak during the Nike World Basketball Festival and for the most part, has just kept a low profile.

Finally, we have some fodder. J.R. Moehringer of GQ had the opportunity to spend three weeks with LeBron in the lead-up to the decision and also spoke to James about a number of different things.

In the interview that drops in full Aug. 24, LeBron actually says he could see himself returning to Cleveland one day as well.
"If there was an opportunity for me to return," he says, "and those fans welcome me back, that'd be a great story." But then again, he also talks about how as a kid, he hated Cleveland, italics used for added emphasis on hated.

A few of the other highlights:

LeBron on how those close to him view his decision: “They’re happy to see me happy. That’s what they can see in my face. They say: ‘It’s been a while since we’ve seen you look like that.’”

On Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert: “I don’t think he ever cared about LeBron. My mother always told me: ‘You will see the light of people when they hit adversity. You’ll get a good sense of their character.’ Me and my family have seen the character of that man.”
 
On how a kid could from Akron, located only thirty minutes from Cleveland, could grow up rooting for Chicago and Jordan: "It's not far, but it is far. And Clevelanders, because they were the bigger-city kids when we were growing up, looked down on us.… So we didn't actually like Cleveland. We hated Cleveland growing up. There's a lot of people in Cleveland we still hate to this day."

On how growing up helped him learn about facing adversity and staying humble:
“That’s what keeps me humble, because I know my background, know what my mother went through. I never get too high on my stardom or what I can do. My mom always says, and my friends say, ‘You’re just a very low-maintenance guy.’"


Moehringer also describes in detail what it was like hanging with LeBron's crew. One of the more interesting points is how LeBron is surrounded at all times. Whether it be with friends, managers, agents or family, LeBron doesn't spend a lot of time by himself.
Moehringer writes: "But as with anything, all that comfort comes at a cost, and I think that his fear of being alone keeps him at times from walking through the fire that we all have to walk through. Maybe sitting alone in a room and thinking might have helped him realize that an hour-long special devoted to his decision was ill advised. My suspicion from watching him surrounded by people wherever he goes is that he's not spending a lot of time alone in a room thinking through things."

There's also something in the article talking about how James is potentially trying to re-create his high school experience, something he calls his favorite time of his life, by going and playing with friends in Miami. It's interesting because James spurned his local predominantly African-American high school but instead enrolled at predominantly white St. Vincent-St. Mary to play with friends and build a superteam. He was called a traitor, a cop-out and pretty much all the things he's being called now. And as Moehringer points out, in LeBron's memoir, the chapter talking about his choice to play at the catholic prep school is entitled "The Decision."

I remember Brian Windhorst, who covered LeBron even in high school, tweeting in the build-up to the one-hour announcement special that this new media savvy, image conscious LeBron was not someone he knew. LeBron refers to himself in the third-person constantly, talks about hating Cleveland his entire life and is so enveloped in his own happiness that he surrounds himself with people that only tell him how happy he is. That doesn't sound a whole lot like the guy that was all about winning and teammates a few years ago with the Cavs.

But honestly, after this inside look, maybe LeBron never changed. Maybe he's the exact same guy he's always been.


Posted on: August 16, 2010 8:49 am
 

Shootaround 8.16.10: Chicken and the egg edition

News and links to set the NBA table, brought to you daily...
Posted by Matt Moore

Lance Stephenson's impressive performance in Summer League was enough to make you think maybe all the talk of him being a knucklhead was overblown. Whoops. Stephenson allegedly threw his girlfriend down a flight of stairs Sunday. The question of whether the acqusition of Darren Collison by the Pacers now looks like a savvy move or if Stephenson's realization that he's been bumped down the depth charthelped contribute to the incident is a lot like the chicken and the egg. Only with guys that throw their girlfriends down stairs. Not cool, if true.

Dwyane Wade feasts on the tears of children. No, seriously, there's video evidence and everything .

Mike Miller is no longer on the list of "guys you should mess around with." He's been training with MMA fighters .

Owners-media relationships are one of the more interesting developments in new media, as owners have been at both ends of the spectrum. Michael Hiesley has done interviews with blogs before. James Dolan, on the other hand, doesn't even speak up when he needs to make sure everyone knows the house is in order.

J.J. Redick was one of the most efficient players in the NBA last season, which is particularly difficult from the perimeter. With his new nifty $20 million contract, you have to wonder if he'll be given more opportunities to showcase that efficiency.

The Warriors sold for $450 million, which isn't a bad price tag in this economy. The Detroit Pistons, with multiple championships and a much greater basketball legacy, but in a decisively lower bargaining position, are on the table and close to a deal, but the leading bidder's not willing to go over $400 million . Whether this is the kind of driving force behind the failing economy of a symptom thereof, is, naturally, another chicken-and-the-egg deal. As long as the Pistons don't move, everything should be cool.

O.J. Mayo is arguably the second best player on the Grizzlies, depending on who you talk to. And there are six spot-on reasons why he doesn't have a place on the Grizzlies roster. This has "how the Grizzlies screw up a good situation, again" written all over it.

Josh Childress, on if he can be a lockdown perimeter defender on the Suns, a team not known for its defense, even marginally acceptable defense: "That's the plan."

Andrea Bargnani isn't the worst rebounding seven-footer in the history of the league. But it's really close .

Finally, I'd like to nominate the following as our official slogan for the 2010 FIBA World Championships: "Please do not get hurt, Tyson Chandler." Really? Eric Gordon goes with the team on the next leg, and JaVale McGee, for all his issues one of the true legit bigs on the roster, and Jeff Green go home? In Coach K we trust, but....


Posted on: August 15, 2010 7:07 pm
Edited on: August 15, 2010 7:25 pm
 

Haslem charged with drug possession

Posted by Royce Young

Luisa Yanez of the Miami Herald reports Miami Heat forward Udonis Haslem was stopped by the Florida Highway Patrol Sunday and drugs were found by a trooper. The FHP confirmied the report late Sunday. 

The incident began as a traffic stop somewhere in Miami, said FHP spokesman Lt. Mark Wysocky. WSVN-Channel7 is reporting on its website Haslem has been charged with possession of marijuana.

TMZ reports that Haslem was originally pulled over for having tinted windows. The website says according to its sources, officers searched the car three times for drugs — an initial search and then a search with drug dogs yielded nothing. We’re told when officers searched the car a third time, they discovered less than 20 grams of marijuana.

One thing that's important to mention: First and second marijuana violations don't result in a suspension. The first requires mandatory counseling, the second a fine and then the third, a suspension.
Category: NBA
Posted on: August 12, 2010 10:19 pm
 

Could Brandon Marshall play in the NBA?

Posted by Will Brinson

That's the question NBA blogger Matt Moore (what, even the Panthers quarterback needs a hobby) and I set out to answer in a series of emails Thursday night when Brandon Marshall announced he was heading to the NBA if the NFL lockout actually occurs. These are those emails.

Brinson : So, Brandon Marshall wants to play in the NBA when/if the NFL gets locked out. Unfortunately, there's not enough roster spots to go around for my NFL peeps to just make the jump (not to mention 75% of them couldn't make it in the L), but it kind of brings up an interesting question: which guys from the NFL could ball it up in the NBA?

I think at some point we've discussed crossing over the other way (Bron would be an epic tight end and Allen Iverson's high school tapes still make me drool) but who the hell is your first pick from the NFL pool if you're creating a basketball team? Or, alternately, could Marshall make it? At 6'4", 230 he at least has the body, if not the game.

Moore: As I said in my post (SYNERGY, BABY), he's got a combo-guard's body, but a small forward's skillset. Maybe with his soft hands and awareness, his handle would actually be pretty good. Wait, why does it sound like I'm building his Match.com profile? Anyway, his athleticism would transfer, and that's really the big determining factor. Athleticism is at a premium in the NBA. Work ethic and focus are much more important in the NFL, and that's why guys like Wes Welker likely wouldn't translate well. But Marshall is kind of an ideal candidate.

I'd be interested to see some of the taller, slimmer defensive ends at power forward and center. But even then, most would be too small. Julius Peppers is 6-7 and 283. That's small forward height with power forward weight. As a comparison, Josh Smith is 6-9 and 234. That weight differential is what would probably make the most awkward translation. Then again, most NBA players would likely be destroyed by the sheer physical nature of these guys.

Brinson: I love that you thought of Wes Welker, who's barely taller than me . (Although, hey, Earl Watson, Muggsy and Spud made it ...) But you're right -- Marshall would be a good candidate to shift leagues.

As would Peppers, who, I'm sure you know, played ball at Carolina. So he's got a pedigree, not to mention being a freakish athlete. Size would be an issue, though: you almost never see NFL players even sniff the high end of six feet.

Also, think about guys like Tony Gonzalez or Antonio Gates (who also played basketball). Gates is 6'4", 260 and fast, which makes him an unbelievable tight end prospect. But in the NBA? He'd be a fat shooting guard. (Or, so Gates doesn't beat me up next time I see him, how about "stocky"?)

Moore: I mean, that's really the issue. It's not a matter of the NBA guys being more athletic, it's that they're athletic at the things which make them good at basketball. How's that for some obvious analysis? Essentially, all those high flying catches you see in the NFL? That's an average NBA jump. That's "kind of trying for a rebound on the perimeter" in the NBA.

Now, the explosiveness would probably translate. The way tight ends, defensive linemen, linebackers, running backs, and receivers come out of their breaks? That would work well on the perimeter, provided they could dribble. Of course, they'd have to be able to finish at the rim, but then you'd think the hyper aggression might get them there.

Hey here's an idea. Ray Lewis versus Kevin Garnett. I know they're both past their primes, but think of the insanity on the floor.

Brinson: Yeah, I'm pretty confident that Gates can dunk without any real issue, but he's not going to be going against six-foot-tall DBs when he's attacking the hoop or boxing out people on the block. Or as you put it "kind of trying for a rebound on the perimeter," a.k.a. a "Vince Carter Rebound."

Here's the other problem -- how many shots is Gates going to get off with J-Smoove guarding him? Like 10 out of every 20 with a lot fadeaways mixed in?

How about instead, we just bring Tractor Traylor out of retirement and have he and Andre Smith go NBA Jam style with Garnett and Ray-Ray? Fat AND crazy -- that's something I can get behind.

Moore: Bringing it back home, if Marshall can shoot, then I think he could conceivably make a roster. I mean, how many guys at the end of a bench are there only for their athleticism? I think that the size differential between NFL (shorter and more muscle) and NBA (longer and lankier) means it's going to be difficult for anyone, but Marshall's receiver-to-combo-guard may be the model.

You know, if we can't get Tractor Traylor back.

Do you think Marshall could ball in the NBA? Let us know in the comments or on Twitter @cbssportsnfl and @cbssportsnba .
Posted on: August 12, 2010 7:19 pm
Edited on: August 12, 2010 8:52 pm
 

Brandon Marshall (NFL) wants to play in the NBA

NFL star receiver will try out for Nuggets or Heat if NFL suffers lockout in 2011.
Posted by Matt Moore


NFL star receiver Brandon Marshall is a terrific athlete and has an enormous ego that helped jettison him from Denver to Miami. Which means he'd be a perfect fit for the NBA. Which makes it convenient that Marshall says if the NFL is under lockout in 2011, he'll try out for the NBA, and predictably, he thinks he'll make it.

Marshall told reporters today at Dolphins training camp he planned on auditioning for either the Nuggets or Heat if the NFL locks out the players next year. Of course, what Marshall's probably unaware of is that the NBA is headed for a lockout of its own. Details, details!

How would Marshall, a high school basketball player, fare at the NBA? Well, he's definitely got the athleticism you look for. Killer speed and leaping ability. Unfortunately, he's 6-4, putting him squarely in the point-guard to combo-guard category. And that means he'd need an exceptional handle in order to have any impact. But hey, if he's killing time, playing in the NBA isn't a bad way to go about it.

Of course, you have to wonder what the Dolphins would say about this. I guess we'll cross that bridge when we get there.

Posted on: August 12, 2010 6:00 pm
Edited on: August 12, 2010 6:00 pm
 

Charles Barkley rips Miami's Big 3

Posted by Royce Young

We don't really have an official ruling on anything in the NBA until Charles Barkley speaks on it. So after LeBron's tweet about his mental hit list and all the talk coming from Miami, Chuck weighed in on ESPN Radio 103.3 with Galloway and Company.

"I heard about LeBron's little tweet today that he's remembering everybody who said anything bad about him," Barkley said. "And he said 'everybody.' Well, I want him to make sure that he puts my name on that (list) ... I thought that his little one-hour special was a punk move. I thought them dancing around on the stage was a punk move, and I thought he should've stayed in Cleveland. Him joining Dwyane Wade 's team was very disappointing to me."

See, that's why everyone loves Chuck. He tells it like it is, or at least, how he sees how it is. Barkley continued:

"He's got enough people kissing his ass with his family and all the people who work for him," Barkley said. "We don't have to tell him what he wants to hear all the time ... That one-hour special, them jumping around on stage like punks, that wasn't cool to me. From a basketball standpoint, I wish he had stayed in Cleveland, and if he takes that as criticism, so be it."

It's hard to disagree with anything there. Everything turned quickly into a spectacle which only made the new trio in Miami that much easier to dislike. And it doesn't sound as if Chuck is exactly terrified about landing on LeBron's mental list of death. As he put it towards the end of the interview, "He knows where I'll be, I don't run. I'm on TV every week, I'm easy to find."
Posted on: August 12, 2010 12:15 pm
Edited on: August 12, 2010 12:16 pm
 

LeBron gets heckled and booed in Ohio

Posted by Royce Young

LeBron James has been making the rounds lately and he made another stop in his native Ohio recently. This one at an amusement park in Sandusky.

And as you might suspect, some of the onlookers weren't thrilled to see him. When he came out he was booed a bit and then when he started shooting on one of those oversized pop-a-shots, immediately a fan yelled, "I bet you miss!" Then another said, "Shoot with the left; your elbow hurts!"

And then the two best zingers: One fan yelled "It's just like Game 5!" followed by another yelling "Just like the playoffs!"



It didn't help matters that LeBron was something like 2-11 from the field and even airballed one. Some fans did cheer a few makes but for the most part, the crowd was a little restless.



I'm sure the fine people of Ohio have now gotten it all out of their system. When LeBron returns Dec. 2 for his first game back in Cleveland, I'm sure it'll be smooth sailing now. Yep, nothing to worry about now. Move along people.
Category: NBA
 
 
 
 
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