Saturday, August 4, 2012

Oklahoma City Signs Daniel Orton to Non-Guaranteed Training Camp Contract


The Oklahoma City Thunder have signed former Kentucky big man Daniel Orton to a non-guaranteed training camp contract. He will have an opportunity to make the team but is not assured a spot on the open night roster.

If Orton does not make the team, he will be assigned to the Tulsa 66ers of the NBA Development League.

Here is an excerpt:

The Oklahoma City Thunder has added Oklahoma City native and former Bishop McGuinness standout Daniel Orton to its roster, the team announced Saturday.

Orton, a 6-foot-10 center, will join the team on a non-guaranteed training camp contract and is not assured a spot on the opening night roster.

The off-season additions of Perry Jones III, Hasheem Thabeet and Hollis Thompson bumped the number of players under contract with the Thunder to the league-maximum 15. Orton is expected to be one of a handful of training camp invitees who must fight to make the final roster.

If Orton does not make the team, it’s likely that he will be assigned to the Thunder-owned Tulsa 66ers of the NBA D-League. It’s something the Thunder has done in the past with former training camp players like Jerome Dyson and Elijah Millsap
.

Complete Article

Friday, August 3, 2012

Doron Lamb "Doesn't appear ready for major minutes"


Milwaukee Bucks beat writer Gery Woelfel says former Kentucky star Doron Lamb "doesn't appear ready for major minutes" in the NBA.

Here is an excerpt of Woelfel's thoughts:

The Bucks haven’t been nearly as aggressive in their pursuit of a wing player, though. They did draft Doron Lamb, a shooting guard from Kentucky in the second round.

While Lamb is definitely an intriguing prospect, as he exhibited in the NBA Summer League in Las Vegas, he doesn’t appear ready for major minutes. What’s more, he doesn’t have the size the Bucks are looking for at the wing spot.

That has led Bucks officials to explore the possibility of trading for a wing player or signing one in free agency. While they have plenty of time to pull off a trade before training camp by using one of their power forwards as bait, they have been checking out the free-agent market
.

Read More

Union College Adds Bush and Hildebrand for 2012-13


Union College has signed two Kentucky high school players for the 2012-13 season.

The Bulldogs have added Josh Hildebrand from Barbourville High School and Kyle Bush from Ashland.

Here are release from UC:

ASHLAND, Ky. - Back in middle school, Kyle Bush heeded a teacher's advice to write down goals and put them in a place where he would see them every day.

Bush didn't have to think long before putting to paper a lifelong ambition.

"It's been a dream of mine to play college basketball since I was a little kid," said Bush, who has been on the AAU circuit since he was a third-grader. "I pinned up that piece of paper on a wall in my bedroom. Every day when I wake up, I see it."

Now, Bush can read it with a smile. Last season's area assist leader as a senior for the Ashland Tomcats signed this summer with Union College, an NAIA school located in Barbourville, Ky.

Bush, who maintained a 3.6 grade point average, knows greater challenges await him at the next level.

"I made the goal of getting there," he said. "That was the easy part. Now I have to produce for the next four years."


Bush - Complete Release

Many student-athletes who decide to play their sporting trade at the collegiate level are posed with the daunting task of selecting the right school to attend.

But former Barbourville High School shooting guard Josh Hildebrand was not in those ranks.

He signed a letter of intent last week to play basketball at Union College.

"(It was) Union all the way," Hildebrand said. "It's where I want to go."

He cited Union's proximity to home as the reason he didn't consider playing or attending any other school.

Hildebrand was recruited by former Union College Men's Head Basketball Coach Sean Gillespie, who resigned in March.

However, he's relishing the chance to make his mark on recently hired Union coach Kevin Burton's clean slate.

"The coach before came and talked to me last year," Hildebrand said. "But I like Coach Burton. I think he'll be a good coach."


Hildebrand - Complete Release

Torian Graham Back on Kentucky's Radar?


According to Justin Byerly of BasketballElite.com, 2012 star Torian Graham has qualified academically and is just waiting to be cleared by the NCAA.

Byerly noted on his Twitter account that "Kentucky was mentioned" in the conversation.

Justinbyerly Hearing Torian Graham has qualified and just waiting on NCAA to clear him. Kentucky was mentioned in conversation.

Faried, Harper Play Open Run at St. Catharine College

Former Morehead State stars Kenneth Faried and Demonte Harper were at St. Catharine College Thursday night for open run.

Faried and Harper will join Maze Stallworth, Cecil Brown, Leon Buchanan, Brandon Shingles, John Lamb, Aishon White and Andreas Coleman on a team in the Mason County-Maysville Dirt Bowl over the weekend.


Rajon Rondo to be Featured in New Video Game


Former Kentucky star Rajon Rondo will soon be featured in a new video game titled "Getting Buckets."

NBA star Baron Davis is teaming up with EA Sports to form 5 Balloons Interactive, a new mobile gaming company.

Here is more from CelticsLife.com:

The company’s first game is called “Getting Buckets” and features the likes of Davis, Steve Nash, Rajon Rondo, Brandon Jennings, and Candace Parker in a fast-paced, twitch adventure that’s more “Temple Run” than “NBA Ballers,” as players sprint their way through a variety of environments collecting as many buckets as they can before time runs out (all while dribbling a basketball, of course).

Source

Anthony Davis Inks Exclusive Deal with Panini America


Former University of Kentucky star Anthony Davis has inked an exclusive deal with Panini America, the world's largest sports and entertainment collectibles company.

Here is the official release from Panini:

Panini America, the world’s largest sports and entertainment collectibles company and the exclusive licensed trading card partner of the NBA, announced today that it has reached an exclusive multi-year trading card agreement with Anthony Davis, the No. 1 overall pick of the New Orleans Hornets in the 2012 NBA Draft. Davis is the fourth No. 1 overall pick to sign exclusively with Panini America since 2009. Past number one overall picks include Blake Griffin, John Wall and Kyrie Irving.

The agreement grants Panini America exclusive rights to produce autographed trading cards of the future NBA star. Previously, Panini America announced that it had signed exclusive deals with Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (#2 Overall, Charlotte Bobcats), Thomas Robinson (#5 Overall, Sacramento Kings), Harrison Barnes (#7 Overall, Golden State Warriors), Andre Drummond (#9 Overall, Detroit Pistons), Austin Rivers (#10 Overall, New Orleans Hornets), John Henson (#14 Overall, Milwaukee Bucks) and Jared Sullinger (#21 Overall, Boston Celtics).

In all, Panini America has now confirmed autographed trading card deals with 54 of the 60 2012 NBA Draft Picks, as well as 12 undrafted NBA rookies – ensuring that all of the NBA’s key rookies will be featured as part of the Panini America Double Rookie Class.

A talented crop of 2012 rookies will join key members of the 2011 NBA Draft class, including 2011-12 Kia NBA Rookie of the Year Kyrie Irving, Derrick Williams, Kenneth Faried and more to make collectibles industry history during the 2012-13 NBA season as part of basketball’s first Double Rookie Card class. The much-anticipated Panini Double Rookie Class will debut with the launch of the 2012-13 NBA Hoops which will be available at retail and hobby shops nationwide on Wednesday, August 15.

Complete Release

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Photos: John Calipari Prasco ProCamp, Part II

Here are more pictures from the 2012 John Calipari Prasco ProCamp:






* Photos: Nick Hammonds, Allkyhoops.com

Photos: John Calipari Prasco ProCamp, Part I

Here are some photos from the 2012 John Calipari Prasco ProCamp:






* Photos by Nick Hammonds, Allkyhoops.com

NBCSports.com Slides in a Cheap Shot at John Calipari

NBCSports.com has an article out today titled "Sleaze is alive and well in the recruiting world."

For some reason, the article is highlighted by a picture of University of Kentucky head coach John Calipari.



The article asks, "Why is John Calipari cornering the market on the blue-chip recruit?"

Read the Article

My Thoughts: Could you not find an image of a pile of money on Google Images? Why take a shot at Calipari?

Video: Andy Katz Interviews Donnie Tyndall

Here is Southern Miss head coach Donnie Tyndall doing a recent interview with Andy Katz:

Marquis Teague is Only Unsigned First Round Pick


Former Kentucky star Marquis Teague is now the only unsigned first round pick from the 2012 NBA Draft.

Here is a closer look at the situation from ShamSports.com:

The 30th player, the lone unsigned warrior, is Marquis Teague. He was drafted 29th overall, and while the 28 ahead of him (and Festus Ezeli behind him) have all been signed, Teague still awaits his first NBA contract. He has not been renounced, a la Travis Knight back in the day, but he also has yet to sign.

As most people are aware of in these days of increased cap transparency, first contracts for first round draft picks are (for their first three years after being drafted, at least) bound by the amounts set forth in the rookie salary scale. This is true no matter what your salary cap situation is. The 29th pick in the 2012 NBA draft has a rookie scale amount of $857,000 in the first year - the only scope for negotiation that teams, players and agents have is being able to sign for as much as 120% or as little as 80% of that.

In practice, almost everybody gets the 120%, even when drafted late. The exceptions to this are very few and far between. But there have been some. In the doing I've been doing this, there's been all of six. Sergio Rodriguez signed for only 100% in 2006, while the next year, Ian Mahinmi got only 80% in year one, rising to 100% in later years. Donte Greene got only 100% in 2008, whilst the man drafted two picks above him, George Hill, got 120% in his first two years then only 80% in the last two (an amount which was so small that it was actually smaller than the minimum salary, and thus had to be adjusted upwards to meet that). In 2010, James Anderson got a contract that paid up to of 120% of the scale in the first year upon meeting incentives, but only 115% in the second year, and would have only paid 117% in the third year had he gotten that far (yet that option year was never exercised). And last year, MarShon Brooks signed for only 115% in the first year, then 120% thereafter, a move that saved his team $46,255. [NB: For more ardent followers, Cory Joseph met his incentives and got 120%.
]

Complete Article

University of Kentucky Releases Statement on Rod Strickland

The University of Kentucky has released the following statement regarding the arrest of staffer Rod Strickland:

Rod Strickland was pulled over this morning in Lexington on a routine traffic stop on the way to the office. According to police reports, he was pulled over for failure to signal and for driving with a suspended license. According to Strickland, his vehicle was properly registered and he produced his driver's license at the scene. We are currently gathering information on whether his license was suspended due to a clerical error which led to his arrest.

Rod Strickland Arrested for Driving on Suspended License


Former Kentucky basketball assistant coach Rod Strickland was arrested early this morning in downtown Lexington, according to Lex18.com.

Strickland was charged with driving on a DUI suspended license, not having registered plates and failing to signal.

Here is more from WLEX:

Former UK assistant basketball coach Rod Strickland was arrested early Thursday morning in downtown Lexington and charged with driving on a DUI suspended license, among other charges.

Strickland, 46, was arrested at East Maxwell and South Martin Luther King Boulevard. Aside from the driving on a DUI suspended license, Strickland was also charged with not having registered plates and failing to signal
.

Read More

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

St. Catharine to Play at Southern Miss, Morehead State


I was told by a good source tonight that St. Catharine College will play exhibition games at Southern Miss and Morehead State in early November.

St. Catharine head coach J.T. Burton played for Southern Miss head coach Donnie Tyndall. The two have maintained a great friendship throughout the years.

Burton also has a good relationship with the Morehead State staff. Eagles' assistant coach Beau Braden previously worked as Burton's assistant at St. Catharine.

Former Morehead State star Maze Stallworth is now an assistant on Burton's staff.

Xavier Rathan-Mayes Cuts List to 10, Plans UK Visit


Xavier Rathan-Mayes, the high school teammate of Kentucky recruit Andrew Wiggins, has announced his top 10 list of schools on Twitter.

Rathan-Mayes announced a final list that includes Kentucky and added that he will be visiting UK on Friday:

YungBoiMayes Top 10 Is Baylor, Uconn, Alabama, FSU, Kansas, Kentucky, Illinois, Memphis, Texas, UCLA no specific order.

YungBoiMayes And will be visiting Kentucky this Friday Unofficial

Rathan-Mayes, a 6-foot-4 shooting guard, ranks No. 48 overall on the Rivals.com list for 2013.

Louisville Adds Mangok Mathiang to 2012 Recruiting Class


The University of Louisville men's basketball program has reportedly signed 6-foot-10 center Mangok Mathiang for the 2012-13 season.

Here is more from the Courier-Journal:

Mangok Mathiang, a 6-foot-10 center from IMG Academies in Bradenton, Fla., has signed as a late 2012 recruit for the University of Louisville men’s basketball team, according to Loren Jackson, coach of IMG’s postgraduate team.

U of L has not announced the signing and would be prohibited from commenting if it hasn’t received the paperwork. Originally from Sudan, Mathiang could have issues gaining NCAA eligibility.

“We think there’s some things we’ve got to take care of, but he’ll be there when school starts,” Jackson said, adding that he touted Mathiang to U of L coach Rick Pitino and staff about two months ago
.

Read More

Kenneth Faried to Work Out with Hakeem Olajuwon This Month


Former Morehead State star Kenneth Faried will be learning from one of the NBA's all-time greats this month.

According to Chris Tomasson of Fox Sports, Faried will be working out with Hakeem Olajuwon, one of the game's all-time great big men.

Here is more via DenverStiffs.com:

Add Denver forward Kenneth Faried to list of players who will work out with Hakeem Olajuwon in August. Olajuwon representatives said Tuesday that Faried, Nuggets center JaVale McGee and New York forward Amar'e Stoudemire will all start workouts with Olajuwon at his ranch in Katy, Texas next Monday. Faried might just work out for one week while McGee and Stoudemire could work out for multiple weeks. All of that is not completely determined. Olajuwon, a Hall of Fame center who has worked successfully with the likes of Kobe Bryant, LeBron James and Dwight Howard, also is expected to bring in some other players in late August after the Olympics end. One Olajuwon has said he expects to work with at that time is Knicks forward Tyson Chandler, currently playing for Team USA.

Read More

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Anthony Davis Has Coming Out Party in London

Former Kentucky star Anthony Davis had his true coming out party for Team USA in tonight's 110-63 beat down of Tunisia.

Davis was 5-5 from the field, all dunks, on the way to 12 points and 3 rebounds.

Here are some highlights, including Davis' aerial act:



CBSSports.com says Davis belongs on the team and wonders if he'll see more playing time in the near future:

Yes, it was against Tunisia. A team that was spotted 54 points by Vegas (they covered!) and asked for autographs after the game. Regardless of that, Davis showed a ton of basketball instinct and skill in his 14 minutes on the floor. He scored 12 points on 5-of-5 shooting (all dunks), hit his two free throws, blocked a shot, stole a pass and grabbed a few rebounds.

But it was clear watching Davis play with a bunch of NBA All-Stars and superstars: He belongs on this team. He didn't look out of place. He didn't look lost. He fit. And as Doug Collins mentioned during the game on the broadcast, talk about an offseason training regimen for Davis. His coach Monty Williams was in the arena watching the game and has to just be giddy about a) Davis's incredible skillset and b) the kind NBA crash course he's getting.

Now, obviously, the 11 players Davis is playing with are a little different caliber than he'll play his rookie season with in New Orleans. Getting lobs from Chris Paul and Deron Williams is a little different than rookie Austin Rivers and Greivis Vasquez. That's not the point. We knew Davis was a no-brainer pick for the Hornets and we know that he'll make a good pro. But he's showcasing that he actually has value to the best team in the world. Value that could earn him more playing time and could help the United States win a gold medal
.

Complete Article

Jodie Meeks Says Three Teams at Forefront to Sign Him


Former Kentucky star Jodie Meeks says three teams are "at the forefront" to sign him this summer.

According to a report on Hoopsworld.com, Meeks is receiving the most interest form the Lakers, Bucks and Wizards.

Here is an excerpt:

“I’ve gotten interest from the Lakers, Bucks and Wizards,” Meeks told HOOPSWORLD. “There are five or six teams, but those three are at the forefront right now because I’ve been talking to them the most. I really like those teams and I like what they bring to the table. I’m looking forward to signing, whenever that may be.”

Meeks has proven that he can start in the NBA, which separates him from many of the remaining free agents. He has started 114 games in his 200-game career, averaging 8.1 points over the last three years. Last year with the Philadelphia 76ers, Meeks started 50 games. While he has shown that he can be a significant contributor in the NBA, he believes his best basketball is still ahead of him.

“I feel like I still have a lot to develop,” Meeks said. “I’m still young, only 24 years old, and I have a lot of things to show in my career. I’m looking forward to, whatever team I go to, showing what I can do and trying to win as much as possible.”


Complete Article

KHSAA Boys' Sweet Sixteen Finals to be on Sunday


The Kentucky High School Athletic Association has announced that the Boys' Sweet Sixteen championship game will be moved to Sunday.

Traditionally, the Sweet Sixteen semifinals have been played on Saturday morning/afternoon, and the finals on Saturday night.

Here is more from Mike Fields of the Herald-Leader:

For the first time in the 95-year history of the event, the title game of the boys’ state basketball tournament will be on Sunday next March.

Traditionally, the Sweet Sixteen semifinals have been played on Saturday morning/afternoon, and the finals on Saturday night.

But because of a potential conflict with a University of Kentucky men’s game in Rupp Arena on March 9, 2013, the KHSAA will tweak the format of the state tournament by holding the semifinals on Saturday night (March 9), and the finals on Sunday afternoon (March 10).

“They say that necessity is the mother of invention,” KHSAA commissioner Julian Tackett said in a press release. “While we all like to be reverent to tradition . . . circumstances have created both a need and an opportunity for us to try something different for one year and we will see what happens with it.

“The worst that can happen is we go back to the formula we know has worked for most of our 94 years.”


Complete Article

Nerlens Noel Meets with Governor Deval Patrick

Soon-to-be Kentucky freshman Nerlens Noel met with Massachusetts' Governor Deval Patrick yesterday.

Here is more from Mass.gov:

Office) View full size photo.

BOSTON – Monday, July 30, 2012 – Governor Deval Patrick today met with Nerlens Noel, an Everett resident named the number one college basketball recruit in the country this year. Nerlens Noel is a 2012 graduate of the Tilton School in New Hampshire. Nerlens, a 6-foot-11 center, recently committed to play for the University of Kentucky. The Kentucky Wildcats are the defending national champions in NCAA Men’s Division 1 Basketball.

Photo by Eric Haynes (Governor's Office):

University of Pikeville Adds New Weight Room

The University of Pikeville has a new weight room that is ready for use. The new facility will be used by all UPIKE men's athletics programs (football, basketball, baseball, etc.).

Men's basketball coach Kelly Wells posted a picture on Twitter:

CoachKellyWells New weight room is ready to roll in athletic complex. Great addition! pic.twitter.com/dK9Ysnko

Monday, July 30, 2012

Patrick Patterson Enjoying Some Time Away in Key West

Former Kentucky star Patrick Patterson is enjoying a little time away from basketball right now as he is on vacation in sunny Key West:

pdpatt #keywest #sweatin #hotttttt http://instagr.am/p/NtnFlCMJx6/

Anthony Davis Gets Revenge, Stomps Christian Laettner

Former Kentucky star Anthony Davis gets a little revenge for Big Blue Nation (Photo: FoxSports on Twitter):



That, of course, is Anthony Davis hanging out with former Duke star Christian Laettner (Photo: USA Basketball):

John Calipari Has a New Scheduling Idea


Kentucky head coach John Calipari has a new scheduling idea for his Wildcats.

Calipari tells Andy Katz he'd like to get Kentucky's top non-conference opponents to agree to a scheduling rotation in which each team would play two home and two road games against the group each season so that all four teams were on each team's schedule.

Here is an excerpt from ESPN.com:

3. The latest scheduling gimmick John Calipari threw at me was to get what he perceived as the top Kentucky nonconference opponents -- Indiana, North Carolina, Kansas and Louisville -- to agree to a scheduling rotation in which each team would play two home and two road games against the group each season so that all four teams were on each team's schedule. It sounds great, but it would be almost impossible to pull off with those other schools having other high-profile commitments with tournaments, neutral-site agreements and conference-mandated challenge games. UK is playing only Louisville on that list of teams next season.

Source

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Video: Call of the Wildman...Goonie Style

Kyle Wiltjer and Willie Cauley-Stein are back...this time they are acting out "Call of the Wildman":

Josh Harrellson Helps Kids with Cancer at Indian Summer Camp

Former Kentucky star and Houston Rockets player Josh Harrellson talks to FOX 56 about his visit to Indian Summer Camp in Kentucky to help children with cancer:

Cavaliers to See if Kelenna Azubuike "Can Still Play"


The Cleveland Cavaliers plan to invite former Kentucky star Kelenna Azubuike to camp to "see if he can still play" according to Bob Finnan of The News-Herald.

Here is an excerpt:

Shooting guard (3) — Dion Waiters, Daniel Gibson, Kelenna Azubuike. The plan is to bring Azubuike to camp and see if he can still play. If he can't, then they'll have to find another shooting guard. He's played 12 games in the last three seasons because of a serious knee injury. Waiters will be given every opportunity to start. He'll be needed to score points because the Cavs haven't adequately replaced Antawn Jamison's 17.2 points per game. Gibson is rehabbing a torn tendon in his foot. If he recovers, he'll likely be the backup at shooting guard. Rookie Justin Holiday showed some promise in summer league in Las Vegas and might warrant another look in training camp.

Source

Michelle Obama Hugs The Brow

Anthony Davis gets a nice big hug from Michelle Obama after Team USA's 98-61 victory over France this morning:

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