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Web viewing of NBA games may soon exist

by venirpoluka August 22, 2008 @ 12:00 am (Category : Blogs )

The Oklahoman (Mel Bracht) reports: Say you’re working late and can’t make it to the Ford Center to watch Oklahoma City’s new NBA team play its game that night. Instead, you log on to your computer and watch streaming video of the team’s game broadcast. Sound far-fetched? Not if the NBA has its way. The league is aggresively promoting three new Internet elements — video streaming in home markets, interactive TV and video-on-demand — for the upcoming season. Ed Desser, a media consultant for Oklahoma City’s team, said many details have yet to be worked out, and didn’t expect the team to offer the Internet elements anytime soon.

Four teams are without any Saturday home games

by August 7, 2008 @ 12:00 am (Category : Uncategorized )

The Oklahoman (Darnell Mayberry) reports: Oklahoma City will be one of only four NBA teams without any Saturday home games. The defending NBA champion Boston Celtics, the runner-up Los Angeles Lakers and the Toronto Raptors are the only other NBA teams without any Saturday home games. “I don’t like it at all,” Hill said. “It’s hard to make it down to Oklahoma City to go to a game during the week.” The NBA compiled Oklahoma City’s schedule from a list of available Ford Center dates submitted to the league by arena management as agreed to by the team. Teams play 41 regular-season home games, but out of the 75 possible home dates submitted to the NBA, only one was a Saturday, according to schedule maker Matt Winick, NBA vice president of operations.

Three Euroleague teams to play NBA preseason games

by July 30, 2008 @ 12:00 am (Category : Uncategorized )

The National Basketball Association (NBA) and Euroleague Basketball have announced that three Euroleague teams will compete in five NBA preseason games from October 10-21, 2008. The five games, which are part of the Euroleague American Tour, will be played by 2008 Euroleague champion CSKA Moscow (Russia), FC Barcelona (Spain) and Lietuvos Rytas (Lithuania). The teams may face up to five NBA opponents including the Golden State Warriors, the Los Angeles Lakers, the Orlando Magic, the Toronto Raptors and possibly the Los Angeles Clippers.
“These games continue our collaboration with Euroleague Basketball, as we work together to grow the game of basketball on a global basis,” said NBA Commissioner David Stern.
The Euroleague American Tour continues a tradition of friendly competition between the NBA and Euroleague Basketball, dating back to 1978 when Maccabi Tel Aviv played the Washington Bullets in Tel Aviv, Israel. Following the 2008 preseason schedule, 33 games will have been played between the two leagues since Euroleague Basketball was created in 2000, including 13 games during NBA Europe Live presented by EA SPORTS™ in 2006 and 2007.
“We value the chance to partner with NBA teams in their own arenas,” Euroleague Basketball CEO Jordi Bertomeu said. “There are basketball fans of all types in North America whom we plan to entertain with our own distinct playing style. We are sure they will appreciate again that the international game has a lot to offer our sport.”
The Euroleague American Tour tips off on Oct. 10 in Orlando, Florida, when six-time Euroleague champion CSKA Moscow makes its North American debut against the Orlando Magic. CSKA’s second preseason game will take place in Toronto, Canada, when CSKA plays the Toronto Raptors on Oct. 14.
FC Barcelona play two games as part of the Preseason Shootout at STAPLES Center in Los Angeles, Calif. The 2008 NBA Western Conference champion Los Angeles Lakers will be Barcelona’s first opponent on Oct. 18, followed by the either Los Angeles Clippers or Toronto Raptors on Oct. 19. For Barcelona, founded in 1926, the games in Los Angeles will be their first played in the United States.
ORACLE Arena in Oakland, Calif. will be the final site of the Euroleague’s American Tour when the Golden State Warriors hosts Lietuvos Rytas on Oct. 21. Rytas is the 2005 ULEB Cup champion and hold five Lithuanian League crowns.
For the third consecutive year, NBA teams will participate in preseason games abroad. The Miami Heat, New Jersey Nets, New Orleans Hornets and Washington Wizards will play four games in Barcelona, Berlin, London and Paris as part of NBA Europe Live 2008.

Sixers sign Kareem Rush

by July 29, 2008 @ 12:00 am (Category : Uncategorized )

Philadelphia 76ers President and General Manager Ed Stefanski announced today that the team has signed free agent guard Kareem Rush. Per team policy, terms of the agreement are not disclosed.
“As we continue to build our team, we’re fortunate that we were able to sign a player as talented as Kareem Rush,” Stefanski said. “We feel his abilities on both ends of the floor and his range as a three-point shooter will be assets to us this season.”
In five NBA seasons, Rush (6-6/215) has appeared in 314 games with 77 starts, averaging 6.8 points, 1.8 rebounds and 1.1 assists in 18.1 minutes per game while shooting 40.2% from the floor, 36.0% from 3-point range and 69.8% from the line. Rush has also played a total of 31 playoff games, averaging 3.6 points while shooting 39.3% from 3-point range.
Last season, Rush saw action in 71 games with 15 starts for Indiana, averaging 8.3 points, a career-high 2.4 rebounds and 1.3 assists in 21.2 minutes per game. After not hitting more than 57 3-pointers in any of his first four NBA seasons, Rush drilled 102 3-pointers in 2007-08 on a career-high 38.9% shooting. He recorded at least two made three-pointers in 33 games, including three or more 13 times. Andre Iguodala led the Sixers in games with multiple three-pointers made last season with 30.
Rush was originally selected by Toronto with the 20th overall pick in the 2002 NBA Draft before his rights were traded to the Los Angeles Lakers. In his second season, the Lakers advanced to the NBA Finals with Rush averaging 14.3 minutes per game playing alongside Kobe Bryant, Karl Malone, Shaquille O’Neal and Gary Payton. In the deciding Game 6 of the Western Conference Finals vs. Minnesota, Rush hit six three-pointers en route to scoring a playoff career-high 18 points.
In December of 2004, the Lakers traded Rush to the expansion Charlotte Bobcats, where he would average 10.7 points over the next season and a half. Rush signed as a free agent with Seattle in October of 2006, but was hindered by a groin injury and was waived before appearing in a game. In January, he joined Lietuvos Rytas of Vilnius, Lithuania was later named the ULEB Cup’s Import Player of the Year and All-ULEB Cup First Team by Eurobasket.com.
Rush played all three of his collegiate seasons at the University of Missouri, earning All-American Honorable Mention his sophomore and junior seasons. His older brother, JaRon, played basketball at UCLA and his younger brother, Brandon, won the NCAA Championship with Kansas back in April and was the 13th overall pick in the 2008 NBA Draft.

Raptors keep their TV analysts

by @ 12:00 am (Category : Uncategorized )

The Toronto Raptors announced Tuesday that Jack Armstrong and Leo Rautins will return as the colour analysts on the team’s television broadcasts for the 2008-09 season. They will join Matt Devlin, who was named July 9 as the team’s new television play-by-play announcer.
“These two broadcasters will bring Raptors fans the in-depth analysis that they have come to expect on all of our game broadcasts,” said Chris Hebb, senior vice-president of broadcast and content for Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment. “They have the experience and knowledge to deliver a compelling story every night and we are thrilled to have them returning to the fold.”
The upcoming season marks Armstrong’s 11th with the organization and the 14th for Rautins. Armstrong will serve as the analyst on all TSN games and appear regularly on SportsCentre as the network’s NBA Insider. Rautins will handle the duties for contests on CBC and The Score, while working alongside Rod Black as studio analyst on TSN’s NBA Studio shows. Both Armstrong and Rautins will continue to add their expertise to various programs on Raptors NBA TV, including pre- and post-game analysis.
Armstrong and Devlin have worked together in the past calling NCAA and WNBA games. Armstrong began his broadcasting career as a radio analyst for the Raptors following a successful 14-year coaching career at the collegiate level.
In addition to his duties with the Raptors, Armstrong is a regular NBA commentator in Canada and a television analyst for NCAA basketball on CSTV, Comcast, Empire Sports Network, Fox Sports, MASN TV, New York/MSG, ESPN’s regional coverage and the Atlantic 10 Conference TV Network. His commentating also extended to the WNBA where he worked for MSG on New York Liberty telecasts for two seasons.
Rautins has been on the Canadian basketball scene for almost 30 years as a player, broadcaster and ambassador of the game. In addition to his broadcasting portfolio, Rautins is the head coach of the Canadian Senior Men’s National Basketball Team.
A 23-year veteran of television, radio and newspaper journalism, Rautins has worked Syracuse University basketball games on both radio and TV and has also broadcast NCAA, NBA, and NBDL basketball for ESPN, ESPN 2, and ESPN Regional. Rautins covered the 1994 World Championships for CTV.
Rautins graduated with honours from the prestigious S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse in 1983. His broadcasting career tipped off as radio analyst for Syracuse basketball and as a CBC radio broadcaster announcing games from the 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles.

How to determine schedule for any team

by July 28, 2008 @ 12:00 am (Category : Uncategorized )

The Oklahoman (Mike Baldwin) reports on a team’s 82-game regular season schedule: “Four games against division opponents. Four games against six out-of-division conference opponents. Three games against the remaining four conference teams. Two games against teams in the opposing conference. A five-year rotation determines which out-of-division conference teams are played only three times.”

Raptors sign Will Solomon

by @ 12:00 am (Category : Uncategorized )

The Toronto Raptors announced Monday they have signed free-agent guard Will Solomon. Per team policy, financial details were not disclosed.
Solomon, 30, has played the past two seasons in Istanbul, Turkey for Fenerbahce Ulker. He averaged 17.8 points, 3.2 rebounds, 4.4 assists and 1.3 steals in 13 regular season games last season. In Euroleague Top 16 play, he contributed 20.5 points, 3.5 rebounds and 3.5 assists in six games. He had a high of 28 points in 32 minutes versus Tau Ceramica.
Solomon, 6-foot-1, 185 pounds, was selected 33rd overall in the 2001 NBA Draft by the Vancouver Grizzlies. He appeared in 62 games with the Memphis Grizzlies in the 2001-02 season, averaging 5.2 points, 1.5 rebounds and 14.2 minutes.
Solomon has played overseas since 2002. He spent the 2002-03 season in Greece with Aris Thessaloniki. He moved to Israel and Hapoel Jerusalem in 2003-04. In 2004-05, he played in Turkey for Efes Pilsen Istanbul. He joined current Raptor Anthony Parker on Maccabi Tel Aviv in 2005-06 and in 2006 he signed with his current club, Fenerbahce Ulker.
The native of East Hartford, Connecticut averaged 15.2 points, 2.7 rebounds and 2.6 assists in 94 career games in three seasons at Clemson University. He entered the NBA Draft following his junior season. He earned first-team All-ACC honours as a sophomore and second-team as a junior. He led the ACC in scoring as a sophomore at 20.9 points. He finished fourth in the conference in his junior campaign at 19.7 points. Solomon finished his career second all-time in school history in made three-point field goals (214).

Raptors front office promotions

by July 23, 2008 @ 12:00 am (Category : Uncategorized )

The Toronto Raptors announced Tuesday that the following changes have been made to the structure of the basketball operations department:
Maurizio Gherardini (formerly Vice President/Assistant General Manager) has been promoted to Senior Vice President of Basketball Operations. Since joining the Raptors prior to the 2006-07 season, Gherardini’s knowledge and vast international experience have been instrumental in helping facilitate a multitude of transactions involving both domestic and international players.
Marc Eversley (formerly Director of Basketball Operations) has been promoted to Assistant General Manager, Player Development. Eversley who joined the Raptors prior to the 2006-07 season will continue to play an integral role in off-court development and relationship management of the players.
Masai Ujiri (formerly Director of Global Scouting) has been promoted to Assistant General Manager, Player Personnel. Since joining the front office in July of last year, Ujiri has played a key role in the player procurement process, including all aspects of scouting, talent assessment and related data management.
Jim Kelly (formerly Director of Player Personnel), entering his 15th season with the team, has been promoted to Senior Director of Player Personnel. In addition to his prominent scouting role of all college, professional and international prospects, Kelly has managed the team’s recent free agent camps, draft workouts and summer league team.
Steve Fruitman (formerly Director of Basketball Finance) has been promoted to Senior Director of Basketball Administration. Fruitman’s extensive knowledge of the NBA’s Collective Bargaining Agreement, insurance programs and other related business complexities have made him invaluable to the organization.
Micah Nori (formerly Advance Scout) has been promoted to Director of NBA Scouting. Nori, entering his 11th season with Toronto, will take over the management of the video scouting/editing suite and will continue to serve as the interface with the coaching staff as it relates to advance (opponent) scouting.
Raptors President and General Manager, Bryan Colangelo said, “We have assembled an exemplary front office and all of these individuals deserve to be recognized as key contributors to our successes on and off the court.”

Raptors sign Nathan Jawai

by July 11, 2008 @ 12:00 am (Category : Uncategorized )

The Toronto Raptors announced Friday they have signed forward-center Nathan Jawai to a two-year contract. Per team policy, financial details were not disclosed. The club acquired the draft rights to Jawai from the Indiana Pacers. He was the 41st overall selection in the 2008 NBA Draft.
Jawai (pronounced JA-why) was the unanimous 2008 Rookie of the Year in Australia’s National Basketball League. He averaged 17.7 points and 9.6 rebounds in 30 games for the Cairns Taipans. He ranked third in the NBL in rebounding, fifth in field goal percentage (.575) and ninth in blocked shots (1.0). He also captured MVP honors of the 2008 NBL All-Star Game after registering 24 points and 12 rebounds.
Jawai, 6-foot-10, 280 pounds, scored 20 or more points 12 times and posted 13 double-doubles for Cairns. He had a career-best 28 points on 13-for-16 shooting and pulled down 15 rebounds at Townsville. He grabbed a career-high 18 rebounds and added 22 points at Sydney. Jawai also recorded a 25-point/16-rebound effort against Singapore.
Jawai attended Midland Junior College in Midland, Texas in 2006-07. He appeared in 13 games, averaging 11.4 points, 5.8 rebound and 1.0 blocks, before returning home to Australia.
He is the first indigenous (Aboriginal) player from Australia to be drafted by an NBA team.
Jawai will participate for the Raptors’ entry in the Las Vegas Summer League (July 11-19).

Raptors sign Hassan Adams

by July 8, 2008 @ 12:00 am (Category : Uncategorized )

The Toronto Raptors announced Tuesday they have signed free-agent guard-forward Hassan Adams to a two-year contract. Per team policy, financial details were not disclosed. Adams attended the Raptors’ free agent camp held June 20-22 at Air Canada Centre.
Adams, 6-foot-4, 220 pounds, played in Italy last season. He signed in November with Ignis Draghi Novara (Lega2), where he averaged 20.0 points, 4.7 rebounds, 2.3 assists and 3.0 steals in 12 games. In March, he moved to Siviglia Wear Teramo (SerieA) and averaged 13.1 points, 4.8 rebounds, 2.0 assists and 2.0 steals in eight games.
Adams was selected 54th overall in the 2006 NBA Draft by the New Jersey Nets. He appeared in 61 games with New Jersey in the 2006-07 season, averaging 2.9 points, 1.3 rebounds and 8.1 minutes. He averaged 4.3 points, 2.9 rebounds and 18.3 minutes in eight starts. He led the Nets in scoring twice, in steals five times and in blocks four times. He posted career highs of 16 points and eight rebounds at Boston on November 29, 2006. He saw action in six postseason games with the Nets.
The native of Los Angeles averaged 14.0 points and 5.4 rebounds during his four years at the University of Arizona. He earned first-team All-Pac-10 honours as a senior, averaging a career-best 17.5 points. He finished his collegiate career as the only player in Pac-10 history to record 1,800 points, 700 rebounds and 200 steals.
Adams will participate for the Raptors’ entry in the Las Vegas Summer League (July 11-19).

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