Posted: 25 януари, 2013 in Uncategorized

Maloofs agree to sell NBA’s Kings

Posted: 21 януари, 2013 in NBA

00407336The Maloof family that owns the Sacramento Kings has reached an agreement to sell a 65 percent controlling interest in the franchise to a Seattle group led by hedge-fund manager Chris Hansen and Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer, according to league sources.

The agreement to transfer the 65 percent majority stake in the Kings to the Seattle group represents the 53 percent owned by the Maloofs and an additional 12 percent from minority owner Bob Hernreich. Sources said that there has not yet been an agreement submitted on the remaining 35 percent of the franchise, which is held by minority shareholders, not the Maloofs.

One source close to the process told ESPN.com’s J.A. Adande that the Maloof family, as it was hoping, will retain a „small piece“ of minority interest in the franchise after its expected relocation to Seattle and renaming as the SuperSonics for next season. It’s believed, though, that the Maloofs will hold no decision-making power once control of the franchise is transferred.

The deal, according to sources familiar with the specifics, calls for the Maloofs to receive a non-refundable $30 million deposit from the Seattle group by Feb. 1. The NBA, furthermore, is fully expecting Hansen to apply for relocation to Seattle for the 2013-14 season by the league’s March 1 deadline, enabling the league’s board of governors to vote on the application at their annual April meeting.

But Sacramento officials are not surrendering their long-running bid to keep the franchise in the California capital. Mayor Kevin Johnson, formerly an NBA All-Star with the Phoenix Suns, continues to lobby NBA commissioner David Stern for the right to present a group of local owners who can match the Seattle offer and finally build a new arena in Sacramento directly to the Board of Governors.

„The mayor of Sacramento has asked me … could I come in and address the board of governors or the relocation committee?'“ Stern said last week before the New York Knicks played the Detroit Pistons in London. „And I said, ‘Always.’ … Sacramento has been particularly supportive (as an NBA community since 1985 and is) always welcome to present.“

According to Yahoo! Sports, which reported earlier this month that the Maloofs were in serious talks with Hansen and Ballmer, Seattle’s plan calls for the Kings to play two seasons in the SuperSonics’ old home downtown at KeyArena while construction is completed on a new building.

Johnson, meanwhile, revealed last week that he had received approval from Stern to present a counteroffer to the league from buyers who would keep the team in Sacramento and said his city is in a „six-week sprint“ to put together a proposal.

The sale price of $525 million, sources said, is regarded as an overall valuation of the franchise and also includes relocation fees.

Given the league’s desire to bring a halt to the long-running saga caused by the Kings’ uncertain future in Sacramento, as well as its hope of seeing NBA basketball return to Seattle before Stern’s scheduled exit from the league office in February 2014, approval of the move by the NBA relocation committee is widely considered to be a formality.

The committee features several current NBA owners and is chaired by Clay Bennett, who controversially moved the original Sonics to Oklahoma City in 2008, but left behind the team’s nickname and logo. Plans for a new $500 million arena in Seattle were approved in October.

Miami Heat star LeBron James took umbrage at news of the deal, tweeting: „So the Kings getting sold for 525M!! And the owners ain’t making no money huh? What the hell we have a (lockout) for. Get the hell out of here.“

Dwight Howard ejected at Toronto

Posted: 20 януари, 2013 in NBA

e0f70ee7-68f5-3456-a486-664466ec6e55Dwight Howard was ejected from the Los Angeles Lakers‘ loss against the Toronto Raptors on Sunday after picking up two technical fouls in the first half.

The first came with 4:43 remaining in the first quarter when Howard lobbied referee Ken Mauer for a foul when he missed a reverse layup after absorbing contact from Toronto’s Aaron Gray.

Howard was assessed his second technical when he and Toronto’s Alan Anderson were issued technical fouls after a Metta World Peace free throw with 1:18 remaining in the second quarter that cut the Raptors’ lead to 48-44.

Howard finished with five points on 1-for-3 shooting, two rebounds, one assist and one blocked shot in 17 minutes of playing time.

Howard now has six technical fouls on the season with 42 games left to play. If that total was to reach 16, Howard would receive an automatic one-game suspension.

It was the second time this season that Howard has been ejected from a game. The first came in a 126-114 road loss to the Denver Nuggets on Dec. 26 when Howard was called for a flagrant foul 2 for hitting Denver’s Kenneth Faried in the face midway through the third quarter.

Lou Williams (ACL) out for season

Posted: 20 януари, 2013 in Injuries, NBA
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Atlanta Hawks v Golden State WarriorsLou Williams, the Atlanta Hawks’ third-leading scorer, will miss the remainder of the season with a right knee injury.

The Hawks announced before Saturday night’s game against San Antonio that Williams tore the anterior cruciate ligament in the knee in Friday night’s loss at Brooklyn. The tear was found when Williams was examined Saturday by Dr. Michael Bernot in Atlanta.

„It’s certainly devastating to us to lose Lou,“ Hawks coach Larry Drew said.

Williams, a guard in his first season with the Hawks, is averaging 14.1 points.

The injury came in the second quarter when Williams stole the ball and was driving to the basket with around 7 minutes left. His leg appeared to give out as he tried to plant and go up for the shot. He limped out of bounds behind the basket and was eventually taken to the locker room area.

The loss of Williams is a blow to an Atlanta team which has lost seven of nine following a strong start. Williams has joined starters Devin Harris and Jeff Teague to make the backcourt a strength for the team.

Suns, coach Gentry agree to part ways

Posted: 19 януари, 2013 in NBA

sp-940-gentry-alvin-8colAlvin Gentry had a successful run with Steve Nash and the previous version of the Phoenix Suns, leading them to the 2010 Western Conference finals.

 Gentry didn’t mesh quite as well with the new bunch at Planet Orange and it cost him his job.

Unable to get a revamped roster headed in the right direction, Gentry and the last-place Suns agreed to part ways on Friday, ending the five-year run of one of the franchise’s most popular coaches.

The team said an interim coach from within the organization is expected to be named in the next 24 to 48 hours.

„Alvin Gentry is a good coach and a good person,“ Suns vice president of basketball operations Lon Babby said from the US Airways Center. „He was the perfect coach for our previous group. But with the current group, all of us, including Alvin himself, realized that it just wasn’t working, the pieces just weren’t fitting.“

Gentry went 158-144 during his stint with the Suns.

„After nine years with the Suns, the organization and I came to a mutual agreement to go in different directions,“ Gentry said in a statement. „I have the utmost respect for Robert and what he’s done with the organization. It’s unfortunate that I was unable to accomplish what I set out to do here.“

Gentry, who was in the final year of his contract, has been in coaching for three decades, including stints as head coach of the Detroit Pistons, Los Angeles Clippers and Miami Heat.

The Suns don’t play again until Wednesday, when they’re at Sacramento.

Indiana Pacers v Los Angeles LakersKobe Bryant has been voted to his NBA-record 15th consecutive All-Star start, leading four Los Angeles players into next month’s game.

Lakers teammate Dwight Howard and the Clippers’ Chris Paul and Blake Griffin will join Bryant in the Western Conference lineup for theFeb. 17 game in Houston. Oklahoma City’s Kevin Durant, the MVP of last year’s game, rounds out the five.

Kevin Garnett held off Chris Bosh in fan balloting, giving the East two Boston Celtics and two Miami Heat players. LeBron James and Dwyane Wade will represent the defending champions and receive passes from Rajon Rondo. New York’s Carmelo Anthony is the other starter.

Bryant finished with 1,591,437 votes, edging James by about 7,800 to finish as the leading vote-getter and break a tie with Shaquille O’Neal, Jerry West and Karl Malone for the most consecutive starting nods.

The NBA’s leading scorer is a four-time MVP of the All-Star game and last year became its career scoring leader.

Garnett beat Bosh, who took to Twitter to stump for votes in the final days of balloting, by about 25,000 votes. He tied Bryant and O’Neal for second all-time with his 15th selection behind Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, who was elected to 19 games.

Reserves will be announced next Thursday. Coaches will vote for seven players in their conferences: two guards, three frontcourt players and two players regardless of position, and can’t vote for a player on their own team.