Tuesday, January 11, 2011

The Hoop & The Harm: Notes from the Hardcourt

Blockbuster in the Works?

After months and months of speculation and denials, could Carmelo Anthony soon be on the move?

Reports from across the world of basketball say a deal involving as many as 4 teams and upwards of 13 players is being worked on as we speak that would, among other things, see Anthony shipped from the Denver Nuggets to the NJ Nets.

Not long ago the 26-year-old soon-to-be free agent reportedly said he’d only accept a trade to the NY Knicks…and while New Jersey isn’t quite New York, the Nets may soon be calling Brooklyn home. That would give them something in common with ‘Melo, who hails from that very borough.

ESPN reported on Monday that the Nuggets are riled up because so many details of the potential deal were leaked to the media, and so they’ve added a demand that another player be added to the mix. The Nuggets want to get rid of Al Harrington in the trade before they’ll allow it to happen – no word of if they leaked that info, or if it was another leak from the other side!

The Nets are reportedly willing to part ways with forward Derrick Favors (number 3 pick in 2009), All-Star guard Devin Harris and at least two first round picks. Apparently Chauncey Billups would go from Denver to Jersey (whether or not he stays there is another question), with Detroit’s Rip Hamilton joining him, while the Nuggets would get a couple more players “for salary-cap purposes,” says ESPN.

Detroit would receive Johan Petro and Troy Murphy from the Nets.

Of course, the whole thing could fall through if Carmelo Anthony says no deal! ESPN says the Nets will get a chance to meet with the player if a potential trade agreement is finalized, which is when owner Mikhail Prokhorov and part-owner Jay-Z will try to convince him that New Jersey (Brooklyn) is the way to go…

If Hova can’t reel ‘Melo in when he gets a chance, he’ll be 0-for-2 when it comes to bringing big name stars to the Nets! I think at that point it would be time to maybe stick to rap…

Avoiding the Heat

As hot as the Miami Heat are right now, I wouldn’t be surprised to hear that other team’s in the NBA aren’t looking forward to bumping into them, but this takes it to another level:

The Cleveland Cavaliers are changing their hotel plans to avoid being in the same facility as the Heat while both teams spend some quality time in Los Angeles. The Cavs play the Lakers tonight and the Heat face the Clippers on Wednesday.

The company line from Cleveland is that two NBA teams staying in the same hotel makes it difficult because they need the use of meeting rooms, suites, laundry facilities and things like that. Not so fast though, says ESPN - this particular hotel hosts several teams at a time fairly often. Interesting fact: the Cavs and the Heat are usually out west at this time of year because it’s when Disney on Ice is in Cleveland and the circus is in Miami. The More You Know!

Speaking of the Heat, they’ve now won 13 straight on the road and 21 of their last 22 games for a 30-9 record. Without LeBron James, the Cavs are 8-29 and are having absolutely no luck – they just lost Anderson Varejao to a torn ankle tendon that he hurt while running in practice!

How big is that loss for Cleveland? Well, Varejao was averaging nine points and 10 rebounds per game, and they’ve lost their last 10 games by an average of 9.5 points! Basically, they can’t afford to give up numbers like that!

MPP Goes To…

Never mind Most Valuable Player…who is the NBA’s Most Popular star at the moment? If you’re going by YouTube views, it’s LA Clippers rookie Blake Griffin!

The Huffington Post reports that the NBA’s YouTube channel features 17 Griffin videos, the most of any player. YouTube says his popularity will likely rise even higher in February as he participates in the league’s Dunk Contest…Here’s a little taste of why Griffin is so popular:

Another guy participating in the Dunk Contest is Washington’s JaVale McGee – here’s a look at what we might see from him:

Other stuff…

The Charlotte Bobcats beat the Memphis Grizzlies in front of just 1,000 fans

In light of the Memphis Grizzlies in-flight fight over gambling debts, Boston’s Ray Allen tells us how the Celtics solve those problems

The Commish talks contraction, LeBron, revenue and tattoos with Fox Sports' Jason Whitlock

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