Archive for August, 2008
Sunday, August 31st, 2008
Sunday August 31 2008 – 11:40pm Eastern
It’s the long weekend, I’m leaving for Europe (for two weeks) in 4 and a half days, and quite honestly, I’m not feeling motivated to blog or be creative right now.
So, I’m taking the easy route and letting somebody else do the work for me!
The Associated Press compiled a list of key dates in the NBA this season and I figured this may be useful for many of you hoops junkies out there.
So, again, thanks to the fine folks at AP, here’s a quick look at the 2008-2009 NBA Calendar:
Sept. 29—Players report to their teams no earlier than 11 a.m. local time.
Sept. 30—Training camps open.
Oct. 9-17—NBA Europe Live exhibition games.
Oct. 24—Preseason ends.
Oct. 27—Rosters set for opening day, 6 p.m. EDT.
Oct. 28—Start of the 2008-09 regular season.
Jan. 5—10-day contracts may now be signed.
Jan. 10—All player contracts are guaranteed for the remainder of the season.
Feb. 15—All-Star game (Phoenix).
Feb. 19—Trading deadline, 3 p.m. EST.
April 26—Early entry eligibility deadline, 11:59 p.m. EDT.
June 18—NBA draft early entry entrant withdrawal deadline.
June 25—NBA draft (New York).
Friday, August 29th, 2008
Friday August 29 2008 – 5:00pm Eastern
In case you missed it – and in case you don’t have out-of-town plans for this final long weekend of the Summer – the Canadian Interuniversity Sports (CIS) announced earlier this week that they’ll be hosting a number of NCAA teams in Ontario, BC, Alberta, and Quebec over the next few days.
Here’s the official press release and schedule courtesy of the CIS (http://www.universitysport.ca/):
Reigning CIS men’s champion Brock will host a trio of NCAA opponents at Bob Davis Gymnasium in St. Catharines, Ont., on Labour Day weekend. The Badgers, who captured the second CIS title in school history last march with a 64-61 win over Acadia, will face Buffalo on Friday night (8 p.m.), Mercer on Saturday evening (7:30 p.m.) and Missouri on Sunday afternoon (2 p.m.).
Meanwhile, the McGill Redmen, Carleton Ravens and Ottawa Gee-Gees all get the opportunity to battle 2007-08 NCAA men’s champion Kansas. The Redmen face the Jayhawks at uOttawa’s Montpetit Hall Saturday at 11 a.m., the Ravens and Kansas meet later Saturday (7 p.m.) at Scotiabank Place, and the Gee-Gees host the U.S. champs Sunday at 7 p.m. at Montpetit Hall.
Kansas claimed its first NCAA title since 1988 last April with a 75-68 overtime victory over Memphis.
On the women’s side, the defending CIS champion UBC Thunderbirds host Louisiana State on Saturday (3 p.m.) and Baylor on Sunday (5 p.m.).
Here’s a complete CIS vs. NCAA basketball schedule for Aug. 29 – Sept. 3.
MEN (all times LOCAL)Friday, Aug. 29
8:00 pm, Buffalo at Brock
9:15 pm, Cal State Fullerton at Trinity Western
Saturday, Aug. 30
10:00 am, South Alabama vs. Queen’s (at Carleton U)
11:00 am, Kansas vs. McGill (at U of Ottawa)
12:00 pm, Penn State vs. Waterloo (at Sheridan College)
1:00 pm, Iona College at Wilfrid Laurier
1:00 pm, Tulsa at UBC
4:00 pm, Virginia at Concordia
5:00 pm, South Alabama vs. Ottawa (at Scotiabank Place)
5:00 pm, Morgan State vs. Western Ontario (at U of Windsor)
7:00 pm, East Tennessee State at Guelph
7:00 pm, Charlotte at Toronto
7:00 pm, Kansas vs. Carleton (at Scotiabank Place)
7:00 pm, Southern Illinois at Windsor
7:00 pm, North Carolina State at York
7:00 pm, Montana at Calgary
7:00 pm, Colorado State at Fraser Valley
7:00 pm, Cal State Fullerton at Simon Fraser
7:30 pm, Mercer at Brock
8:45 pm, Tulsa at Trinity Western
Sunday, Aug. 31
9:15 am, Virginia at McGill
11:00 am, Southern Illinois vs. Western Ontario (at U of Windsor)
12:00 pm, East Tennessee State vs. Waterloo (at Sheridan College)
12:00 pm, Montana vs. Lethbridge (at U of Calgary)
1:00 pm, Morgan State at Windsor
1:00 pm, Tulsa at Fraser Valley
2:00 pm, Missouri at Brock
2:00 pm, Mercer at Toronto
4:00 pm, Iona College vs. Laurentian (at U of Guelph)
6:00 pm, Buffalo at Queen’s
7:00 pm, North Carolina State at Guelph
7:00 pm, Penn State at Ryerson
7:00 pm, Kansas at Ottawa
7:00 pm, Charlotte at York
7:00 pm, Cal State Fullerton at UBC
7:00 pm, Colorado State at Simon Fraser
7:00 pm, Pacific at Victoria
8:00 pm, South Alabama at Carleton
Monday, Sept. 1
10:15 am, Colorado State vs. Trinity Western (at White Rock Christian Academy)
11:00 am, Southern Illinois at Windsor
11:00 am, Pacific at Victoria
12:00 pm, Iona College at Ryerson
12:00 pm, East Tennessee State at Toronto
12:00 pm, Buffalo at Carleton
12:00 pm, Penn State at York
12:00 pm, Montana at Calgary
7:00 pm, Northeastern at McGill
Tuesday, Sept. 2
7:30 pm, Northeastern at Laval
Wednesday, Sept. 3
8:00 pm, Northeastern at Bishop’s
WOMEN (all times LOCAL)
Saturday, Aug. 30
10:30 am, Louisiana State at Trinity Western
3:00 pm, Louisiana State at UBC
5:00 pm, Baylor at Simon Fraser
Sunday, Aug. 31
5:00 pm, Baylor at UBC
5:00 pm, Louisiana State at Simon Fraser
Thursday, August 28th, 2008
Thursday August 28 2008 – 10:25am Eastern
These are truly the dog days!
June was all about the NBA Finals and the NBA Draft. July? Trades and free agent signings. And then August gave us a ton of material with the Olympics and the likes of Chris Bosh, Jose Calderon, Roko Ukic, and more.
But as August winds down, is there ANYTHING going on?
So for today’s blog I thought I’d veer off the NBA path and let ya know how my NFL Fantasy draft went last night.
I had the misfortune of picking 10th out of 14 guys. To be honest, I thought 14 was too much for a legit/competitive pool, but I’m not the Commish! Anyway, by the time #10 rolled around, the likes of Tomlinson, Peterson, Brady, and Moss were obviously all gone.
I still think I drafted a pretty good team but I made two errors: (1) I drafted Ricky Williams too early. I felt I needed a lot or running back depth so I jumped on Ricky, hoping he continues his strong play and pushes Ronnie Brown further into the shadows. I could have had Matt Forte instead of Ricky though. D’oh. (2) This ‘mistake’ isn’t that bad … but … I don’t have a back-up kicker. I have at least one sub at every position – even my defense – except for kicker. So I may have to search the waiver wire and find somebody to go behind Rackers.
Anyway, he’s my team:
1st round – pick #10 – Clinton Portis – RB – Washington
2nd round – pick #5 – Reggie Wayne – WR – Indianapolis
3rd round – pick #10 – Anquan Boldin – WR – Arizona
4th round – pick #5 – Earnest Graham – RB – Tampa Bay
5th round – pick #10 – Jeremy Shockey – TE – New Orleans
6th round – pick #5 – Ricky Williams – RB – Miami
7th round – pick #10 – Brett Favre – QB – NY Jets
8th round – pick #5 – New England D
9th round – pick #10 – Derrick Mason – WR – Baltimore
10th round – pick #5 – Chris Perry – RB – Cincinnati
11th round – pick #10 – Neil Rackers – K – Arizona
12th round – pick #5 – Jeff Garcia – QB – Tampa Bay
13th round – pick #10 – Ben Utecht – TE – Cincinnati
14th round – pick #5 – Chris Brown – RB – Houston
15th round – pick #10 – Washington D
Wednesday, August 27th, 2008
Wednesday August 27 2008 – 12:45pm Eastern
There’s not a lot going on with the Raptors right now. Chris Bosh is shining his gold medal and Jose Calderon is nursing his groin. Other than that, we’re simply counting down to the start of training camp on September 30. Thus, let’s have a quick look at some other small stories in basketball …
The Under 17 Canadian National Championships were held this past weekend in Charlottetown, PEI and Ontario and Quebec came out the big winners.
The Ontario girls won gold with a 77-44 win over Alberta. Natalie Achonwa and Kayla Alexander each scored 20 points for Team Ontario to lead their squad to victory.
On the boys side, Alberta fell again … losing to Quebec, 90-81. Quebec’s Jonathan Tshibuy had 19 points and 6 rebounds to lead his team to the big win over the defending national champs.
BACK TO BEIJING
Following a hugely successful Olympic tournament, basketball will be returning to Beijing in October when the Golden State Warriors and Milwaukee Bucks tip off the 2008 version of the NBA China Games.
The Warriors and Bucks will actually start the NBA China Games in Guangzhou on October 15 and then travel to Beijing for a tilt at the Beijing Olympic Basketball Arena on October 18.
The League’s “NBA Cares” program will also be very active in China; taking part in a number of events and activities to help those affected by the earthquake in the Sichuan Province.
Too bad Yi Jianlian got dealt from the Bucks to the New Jersey Nets this summer.
Former NBA’er Kevin Duckworth has passed away. He was 44 years old.
The cause of his death is still not known. Duckworth was in Oregon for a promotional event for the Portland Trail Blazers.
Duckworth played in the NBA from 1986-1997, with his best years coming in Portland. He was a 2-time All Star and he made it to the NBA Finals with the Blazers in 1990 and 1992.
Terry Porter, Buck Williams, and Clyde Drexler may have got most of the headlines, but the Blazers wouldn’t have had the success they did (in the late 80′s and early 90′s) without Kevin Duckworth.
Duckworth averaged 11.8 points and 5.8 rebounds over his 11-year career. In addition to his time with Portland, the big man also played for San Antonio, Washington, Milwaukee, and the LA Clippers.
Monday, August 25th, 2008
Monday August 25 2008 – 11:10pm Eastern
With the U.S. beating Spain for the gold … and Argentina knocking off Lithuania to take home the bronze … 24 current or former NBA players became medalists in Beijing.
That’s a pretty lofty number considering the NBA was represented by 42 players (past or present) on 12 different rosters/countries … the highest total since NBA players first started competing in the Olympic Games back in ’92.
Let’s take a look at the medalists with connections to the Association:
Carmelo Anthony (Denver Nuggets) United States
Carlos Boozer (Utah Jazz) United States
Chris Bosh (Toronto Raptors) United States
Kobe Bryant (Los Angeles Lakers) United States
Dwight Howard (Orlando Magic) United States
LeBron James (Cleveland Cavaliers) United States
Jason Kidd (Dallas Mavericks) United States
Chris Paul (New Orleans Hornets) United States
Tayshaun Prince (Detroit Pistons) United States
Michael Redd (Milwaukee Bucks) United States
Dwyane Wade (Miami Heat) United States
Deron Williams (Utah Jazz) United States
Jose-Manuel Calderon (Toronto Raptors) Spain
Rudy Fernandez (Portland Trail Blazers) Spain
Jorge Garbajosa (Toronto Raptors 07 – 08) Spain
Marc Gasol (Memphis Grizzlies) Spain
Pau Gasol (Los Angeles Lakers) Spain
Raul Lopez (Utah Jazz 02 – 05) Spain
Juan Carlos Navarro (Memphis Grizzlies 07 – 08) Spain
Carlos Delfino (Toronto Raptors 07 – 08, Detroit Pistons 04 – 07) Argentina
Manu Ginobili (San Antonio Spurs) Argentina
Andres Nocioni (Chicago Bulls) Argentina
Fabricio Oberto (San Antonio Spurs) Argentina
Luis Scola (Houston Rockets) Argentina
* files from the NBA head office in New York
Sunday, August 24th, 2008
Sunday August 24 2008 – 11:45pm Eastern
10. I’m looking forward to seeing Rudy Fernandez in Portland this season
9. Jose Calderon showed his commitment to his career, health, and the Raptors organization by not playing against Lithuania or the United States
8. Dwight Howard has got to put in A LOT of time at the free throw line. If he can hit free throws on a consistent basis, he can be an MVP in the NBA one day.
7. Dwyane Wade: Heeeeeeeeee’s Baaaaaaaaaack. Watch out for the Heat this year!
6. No – contrary to what some people have said - I don’t think I look like Juan Carlos Navarro. I’m better looking! Ha.
5. I’d love to see the ’92 Dream Team and the ’08 Redeem Team play in a charity game with mixed-up rosters; 6 members from each team comprising the squad for the charity tilt (i.e. – Magic, Kobe, Barkley and so on … versus LeBron, Bird, Kidd, etc)
4. If Coach K truly doesn’t return for 2012, it’ll be a shame. But I bet Mike D’Antoni takes the helm.
3. Marc Gasol is a beast. He and Darko will give the Grizz a ton of size and strength up front.
2. Love him or hate him, Kobe Bryant is CLUTCH. If there’s one guy I’d want to give the ball to in the dying minutes of a game … It’s Kobe Bryant. Not LeBron … not Garnett … not Carmelo or Duncan or anyone else. Give me Kobe.
1. Spain’s constant whining and complaining to the officials (mostly from those on the bench) was embarrassing. If the U.S. had acted the way many members of the Spanish team did throughout the game, folks (the media; fans) would have called the Americans arrogant, ignorant, boorish and classless. Those words could apply to some members of Team Spain for the way they acted (and flopped) on the floor and on sidelines.
Saturday, August 23rd, 2008
Saturday August 23 2008 – 4:30pm Eastern
I posted some of these comments in my column/blog on Raptors.com yesterday, but only here, on the FAN website do you get EVERY word from Jay Triano on Chris Bosh.
The Raptors’ assistant coach weighed-in on Bosh’s opening 6 games of the Olympics as the American men get set for the gold medal game against Spain on Sunday.
Here’s what Triano had to say about CB4:
ON BOSH’S DEFENSE AND OVERALL PLAY: “Chris has been very good so far in this tournament. He is running the floor very well, and has been extremely active defensively. He has been playing the 5 spot almost entirely this summer. He has finished plays at the basket and I think has been their best rebounder. The most impressive thing has been his communication. It shows how much confidence and attention he has at the defensive end. They went with smaller big’s who could get out and be active when guarding the screen and roll situations, and he has not disappointed. He is out quick and low, and if he has to switch he has been able to keep the smaller players in front of him.”
ON THE CONFIDENCE BOSH HAS GAINED IN BEIJING AND HOW THAT COULD TRANSLATE INTO BIG THINGS FOR THE RAPTORS THIS SEASON: “I hope that this type of leadership can carry over to the Raptors season. If he can be a leader with the best players in the NBA, well that has to give him the confidence that he can do the same when he gets back with the Raptors. This team will win with good defense. The Celtics won last year with good defense. Hopefully the point has been sold to Chris and he can sell the same to him teammates in Toronto.”
Enjoy the game later tonight / early tomorrow morning. I’m sticking with the U.S. as my pick to win it all. Without Jose Calderon, I don’t think Spain can get it done.
Friday, August 22nd, 2008
Friday August 22 2008 – 3:05pm Eastern
The Redeem Team is one step closer to bringing Olympic gold back to the U.S. following their 101-81 victory over Argentina earlier today.
But today’s win didn’t come easy as a scrappy Argentina crew pulled to within 6 points late in the 1st half; doing so without their top player, Manu Ginobili. Ginobili went down early in the 1st half with an undisclosed foot injury and did not return.
Without Ginobili, Argentina simply couldn’t overcome the depth and strength of the Americans and as a result the reigning Olympic gold medalists will have to settle for a chance at bronze instead.
Chris Bosh turned in another SOLID performance for the U.S. … finishing with 11 points and 10 rebounds in 20 minutes of action. He continues to be the best big man on the floor for Team USA and, arguably, their best defender. And they’ll need CB4 in top form for the gold medal game against Pau Gasol and the Spanish National Team.
Spain beat Lithuania 91-86 to advance but they had to do it without Jose Calderon. The Raptors’ guard was sidelined with a slightly torn abductor muscle and it sounds like he’ll be held out of the gold medal game as well.
Word is that Raptor officials have been in touch with Team Spain’s doctors and the injury is not considered overly serious. We’re still awaiting official word on that though.
For more on the abductor muscle – it’s time for Health Class 101 – go to: http://www.abductormuscle.com/
Wednesday, August 20th, 2008
Wednesday August 20 2008 – 6:20pm Eastern
CHRIS BOSH (United States of America)
vs CHN – 13 Min / 9 Pts / 8 Reb
vs ANG – 14 Min / 8 Pts / 2 Reb
vs GRE – 21 Min / 18 Pts / 5 Reb
vs ESP – 17 Min / 2 Pts / 7 Reb
vs GER – 13 Min / 7 Pts / 4 Reb
vs AUS – 17 Min / 10 Pts / 6 Reb
- MISC: Bosh is 20/25 FG in 6 games and he’s arguably been the USA’s best defender
JOSE CALDERON (Spain)
vs GRE – 24 Min / 13 Pts / 1 Asst
vs CHN - 23 Min / 2 Pts / 1 Asst
vs GER - 22 Min / 15 Pts / 0 Asst
vs USA - 22 Min / 4 Pts / 0 Asst
vs ANG – 14 Min / 0 Pts / 3 Asst
vs CRO – 18 Min / 10 Pts / 2 Asst
- MISC: Calderon had 4 turnovers in Game 1 vs Greece but has only 2 in his last 4 games
ROKO UKIC (Croatia)
vs AUS - 30 Min / 9 Pts / 4 Asst
vs RUS - 26 Min / 7 Pts / 2 Asst
vs ARG - 23 Min / 5 Pts / 2 Asst
vs LTU - 32 Min / 13 Pts / 1 Asst
vs IRI - 26 Min / 4 Pts / 8 Asst
vs ESP - 20 Min / 7 Pts / 0 Asst
- MISC: Ukic has 8 steals in 6 games
* GIORGOS PRINTEZIS (Greece)
vs ESP – Did not play
vs GER - 9 Min / 6 Pts / 1 Reb
vs USA - 3 Min / 0 Pts / 0 Reb
vs ANG – 13 Min / 14 Pts / 2 Reb
vs CHN - 1 Min / 0 Pts / 0 Reb
vs ARG – Did not play
- MISC: Printezis doesn’t see much time off the bench but in the time he has played, he’s 8/12 from the floor
Tuesday, August 19th, 2008
Tuesday August 19 2008 – 10:45am Eastern
I’ve had a lot of people emailing me about the Raptors pre-season game in Edmonton against the Denver Nuggets. Most folks want to know when the tickets are going on sale. Well, I finally have an answer for you.
Tickets for the game go on sale THIS Friday – August 22 at 10:00am MDT. From what I’ve heard, the seats range from about $40-$150 … though I’m sure floor seats are much more expensive.
There’s also some sort of internet pre-sale that begins tomorrow (Wednesday) but it’s not exactly clear “who” this pre-sale is for. Perhaps there’s some sort of local offer or insider code floating around the greater Edmonton area. I don’t know.
So … folks in Alberta … there ya go! Look forward to seeing you out there on October 21.
Unfortunately, I still don’t have any word on the scrimmage in Ottawa. Yes, Toronto will be holding their Training Camp in the Nation’s capital … but … no, I don’t know the date of the Black-White game or when tickets might be made available.
Just looking at the calendar, I’m going to guess that the guy will probably be held on Saturday October 4. But remember … that’s just my guess!
Based on the way the end of September and beginning of October shakes out … I think the Raps could have their “Media Day” on Sunday the 28th and then hold camp in Ottawa from Sept. 29 – Oct. 4 or 5.
GET YOUR SWAG
This is for a great cause … so I wanted to mention it …
The Raptors Foundation for Kids is currently holding an auction … featuring a whack of autographed memorabilia … from Chris Bosh signed jerseys and shoes to items from Jason Kapono and Anthony Parker as well.
This auction will raise money for kids’ programs around the GTA and across Canada so dig deep and get yourself something special today!
Have a good one folks. I hope to check back again tomorrow