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  1. Four veteran referees retire, but Dick Bavetta will be back at 71

    Sep 14, 2010, 10:39 PM EST

    Seventy-two years of experience has left the NBA refereeing ranks. To be replaced by five younger refs called up from the D-League. That can be good or bad, depending on your worldview of referees. In reality, it probably makes little different. The New York Times has the details. Joe DeRosa, Joe Forte, Sean Corbin and…

  2. Tim Thomas to stay with ailing wife, will not report to Mavericks

    Sep 14, 2010, 9:23 PM EST

    Just a week ago, Tim Thomas was talking about how he wanted to be back with Dallas, to help them win a title and to show his loyalty to them for the Mavs’ support of Thomas while he was away helping his sick wife. But the reality of those family issues continue to take priority…

  3. Joel Przybilla likely out until November, December

    Sep 14, 2010, 8:01 PM EST

    The optimistic reports that Joel Przybilla would be back for the season opener — which came from Przybilla himself — have proven to be, well, a little too optimistic. Portland General Manager Rich Cho told the Oregonian that November or December seems the more likely timeframe. Which still isn’t bad, the question is how will…

  4. China may get Steve Francis, too. If this were 2001 that country would be killing it.

    Sep 14, 2010, 7:00 PM EST

    China already has all our manufacturing and Stephon Marbury. Then they might get Allen Iverson. And now maybe Steve Francis. That’s what Stevie Franchise himself told Xinhua News (Via Trey Kerby at Ball Don’t Lie): The 33-year-old, once known as “Franchise” as the cornerstone of the Rockets’, said he cannot afford to sit on the…

  5. Who is on Team USA in 2012 in London? Well, probably that Durant guy…

    Sep 14, 2010, 6:03 PM EST

    Predicting who will be the top players in the NBA two years from now is risky business — injuries, development of rookies and a host of other things make the future foggy. As such, predicting the USA Basketball team for the 2012 Olympics in London — watch them right here on NBC! (starting the plugs…

  6. Nets like what they see, but payoff on Derrick Favors well in future

    Sep 14, 2010, 5:13 PM EST

    We all knew Derrick Favors was raw. During the draft it was almost like the hyphenated end of his last name, Favors-Raw. Athletic as all get out, but needing polish. This guy was a bet on the come, not an instant big payoff guy. But apparently he is pleasing the Nets with his progress so…

  7. Bobcats waive Erick Dampier

    Sep 14, 2010, 4:49 PM EST

    The Bobcats have spent the last few days — the last couple months, really — looking for a trade to get some value out of the Erick Dampier contract. The best value apparently was to get the Bobcats under the luxury tax. The Bobcats have waived Dampier. That means his $13 million contract comes off…

  8. David Kahn's letter to Wolves fans: rebuilding of the Timberwolves "nearly complete"

    Sep 14, 2010, 4:10 PM EST

    At least the Timberwolves are being open with their fan base. That’s a positive. First there was the odd full-page letter to the fan base in the Star Tribune yesterday. Then there was the personal letter from the architect of the current Timberwolves, GM David Kahn, to Wolves fans. Here are some highlights, but check…

  9. Will the Heat go after Erick Dampier?

    Sep 14, 2010, 3:38 PM EST

    I’ve lost count of how many centers the Miami Heat have under contract. Roughly the size of the Orc army in the Lord of the Rings trilogy, by my guess. But I could be off by a few. But they might add one more — Erick Dampier. The Miami Herald was doing a little speculating.…

  10. Miami Heat may be taking their training camp talents to the panhandle

    Sep 14, 2010, 2:15 PM EST

    There are going to be a hurricane of media attention swirling around the Miami Heat this season. That is going to start at training camp day one and follow them everywhere, all season. It’s the price of the coup. But for training camp, when the Heat will be trying to mold and meld a lot…

  11. Jazz may not get Mehmet Okur back until December or January

    Sep 14, 2010, 1:40 PM EST

    It was expected that Mehmet Okur would miss the start of the season, but it now looks like the Jazz will need to get by without him for a couple months. Salt Lake Tribune Jazz writer Brian Smith said in a tweet that he is being told it looks like a December or January timeframe.…

  12. Brandon Jennings says feels his shoes may have caused Team USA snub

    Sep 14, 2010, 1:10 PM EST

    Remember in 1992, when on the gold medal stand Nike-sponsored members of the Dream Team wore flags draped over the Reebok logo on their team sweats? The politics of shoes has been a part of USA Basketball since the pros came back. That hasn’t changed. And Brandon Jennings thinks the fact he wears Under Armor…

  13. Pro Basketball Crosstalk: Are the Heat good for basketball?

    Sep 14, 2010, 12:32 PM EST

    Another day, another edition of Crosstalk. Today’s topic: The Miami Heat. Resolved: The Miami Heat (as we now know them) are good for basketball. Rob Mahoney: It is better to be feared than respected. That’s the truism that LeBron James is betting on, as he single-handedly sabotaged his own image while creating one of the most…

  14. NBA Season Preview: The New Jersey Nets

    Sep 14, 2010, 12:00 PM EST

    Today we continue PBT’s run through every team in the NBA, looking at the changes for the upcoming year. Every weekday from now through the start of the season a new team will be the focus. We started with the Knicks yesterday, and will spend this week in the Atlantic Division. Last season: A nightmare.…

  15. Pops Mensah-Bonsu returning to NBA, agent says

    Sep 14, 2010, 11:52 AM EST

    Some bad player research in Spain is good news for NBA fans. Let me explain. Wait, there is not time, let me sum up. Pops Mensah-Bonsu — who played well at Summer League — signed a deal with two-time defending Spanish league champion Caja Laboral. Then he got there and they released him after he…

  16. LeBron now sixth most hated sports figure according to Q Score

    Sep 14, 2010, 11:08 AM EST

    It didn’t take a rocket scientist to know that LeBron James’s popularity had taken a hit in the wake of his move this summer and “The Decision.” The ability to read and log on to message boards could have told you that. Now we have some numbers to back it up. CNBC’s sports business reporter…

  17. Minnesota publishes odd, "honest" open letter to fans. Because nothing sells tickets like letters.

    Sep 14, 2010, 10:27 AM EST

    You know how if you have to explain a joke you’ve already screwed up the execution of it… Meet the Minnesota Timberwolves. On Monday they took over the back page of the Star Tribune with a full-page letter to fans, (you can see the text of it here). The letter is clever in concept in…

  18. Kyrylo Fesenko continues to want more than one-year deal. It's not happening.

    Sep 14, 2010, 9:39 AM EST

    The Utah Jazz have the right and used it — they offered Kyrylo Fesenko a qualifying offer, a $1.1 million deal for one year. Fesenko hasn’t signed it, and nothing is imminent according to the Salt Lake Tribune. Other teams may have some interest in Fesenko, but he’s not going to get much more than…

  19. Prosecutors ask for delay in Matt Barnes case

    Sep 14, 2010, 9:19 AM EST

    Sacramento prosecutors have asked for a one-month delay before having to file charges against Barnes following a domestic violence arrest. The new court date is Oct. 18, according to News 10 in Sacramento, which falls during Lakers training camp. The delay request was “not unusual. We do it all the time,” Deputy Sacramento County District…

  20. Kobe's new Mamba skin Nike shoes

    Sep 14, 2010, 8:30 AM EST

    Not everyone loves Kobe Bryant’s “Black Mamba” nickname. Which makes sense in that one should not be able to nickname themselves. Except it’s Kobe, and he can do whatever he wants. So Black Mamba it is. And Nike is down with it. The photo you see at right, via nikeblog.com, is of the new Nike…

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