Cuse Country

Home Away From Dome for Syracuse Orange Fans

Return to Glory (Pro Update 3-6)

Posted by Josh on March 6, 2007

As first reported here in a comment by Jer, Jason Hart was released by the Kings last week. Actually it looks like he bought out his own contract so that he would be free to sign with the LA Clippers (which he did). The Clips needed a point guard after Shaun Livingston’s horrific knee injury a week ago, along with nagging injuries that have limited Sam Cassell. (LA Times) Hart is looking forward to playing with Elton Brand. This has to be even sweeter for Jason since he grew up in Los Angeles, and he is coming to a team that needs him. He played his first game for LA last night. He was on the court for 25 minutes, basically splitting time with Daniel Ewing. (For comparison, he’d played a total of 28 minutes combined since Dec 12.) He scored 9 points and had 4 rebounds; only one assist but no turnovers. LA lost the game vs. Jason’s first real NBA club, San Antonio. (He actually started out in Milwaukee but played in just one game — the final game of the season.) Here is a nice Hart-themed game story from the San Bernadino Press-Enterprise, with some quotes from Jason and his new coach.

Other NBA results:

Carmelo had 30 points and 7 rebounds but shot only 39% from the floor as the Nugs fell to the Rockets on Friday. This is Denver’s only game in March so far (they play tonight).

Etan Thomas started for the Wizards on Sunday, since Haywood was out with back spasms. He didn’t play great though, shooting 2-8 from the floor, although he did grab 6 rebounds. He only played 14 minutes as the Wiz went with a smaller lineup vs. the quick Golden State Warriors. My guess is that he was trying to “prove himself” too hard on offense, and took some ill-advised shots. But I don’t know for sure.

Finally, Hakim Warrick played well for the Grizzlies over the weekend, contributing 17 & 6 Friday night, and 13 & 5 Saturday, though they lost both games (what else is new).

D-League

It finally happened. Gerry’s Jam faced off against Damone’s Skyforce last Friday. The boys from South Dakota took the game by 6 points. Damone had 18 points (on 6-7 shooting from the floor) and 5 rebounds. Gerry had just 8 points and 2 assists. Gerry bounced back in his next game, scoring 13 points (inlcuding 3-4 on threes) in a loss on Sunday. Meanwhile, Damone’s game continued his solid play — in his previous game which was Thursday, he had 22 points, and 3 each of assists, rebounds, and blocks. However, he did not play in the Skyforce game last night. No indication why; perhaps he’s got a contract offer?

New Zealand

The NBL had its preseason Blitz over the weekend — a series of 24-minute games all held in the same location, featuring all 12 of the league’s teams. This page has the results and the high scorers for each team. Josh Pace led his team with 17 points in the first game and 13 points in the second game Friday, and with 16 points in the second game Saturday (at 11AM; the first game was 9AM and he did not reach double figures, if he even played in it). The regular season starts this week — Josh’s first game is Saturday.

Europe

  • Preston Shumpert had 10 points and 5 rebounds over the weekend in an Itlaian League win; Euroleague playofs continue this Thursday.
  • Elvir Ovcina had 11 points and 5 rebounds over the weekend in a Belgian League win.
  • Ethan Cole played 30 minutes, had 9 points and 11 rebounds in his first game for his new German club. (All I could find was this page with his season stats, no game report.)
  • There were no games in the Polish league this past weekend, so no Otis Hill action.

ABA

The ABA playoffs begin next week. The top 24 teams make it, with the top 8 getting first-round byes. Rankings are not determined solely by win-loss record, because teams tend to play mainly in their own geographic area so the schedules are unbalanced. For that matter, teams don’t even play a consistent number of games. So the ABA has come up with some sort of “power rankings index” to determine who makes the playoffs. Right now Rochester is 6th, and Buffalo is 13th. So both squads appear locked for the playoffs and we’ll keep you posted as to those results. Maybe there will be a little bit better coverage and stat-keeping for the playoff games; one can only hope.

In the meantime, a report on recent action. Z Sims led Rochester with 23 points on Saturday as they try to hang onto that first-round bye. They also won on Friday, and host the top-ranked Vermont Frost Heaves tonight, with Rochester’s record 33-game home winning streak on the line. They are also talking about signing Dennis Rodman to be their “Celebrity 13th Man” for a game or two. Why not, right? Meanwhile, Buffalo has not played since late February — they have just one game remaining on their schedule: this Thurdsay vs. Rochester (which might be the Rodman game). This tends to happen to ABA teams late in the season — several teams always fold during the year, or run low on money, so a lot of games can get cancelled because the team dies or because they can’t afford to make a long road trip. Even though many teams fold each year (this season they lost about 13 – and more might quit after the season ends), the league continues to “grow” because they add tons of new franchises who want a crack at glory. Next season’s list of expansion teams currently has 22 new squads, including the Syracuse Bullies, and teams in Chicago & Las Vegas, but also teams in Rome, GA, Lawton, OK and Murray, KY. There is also a new team forming in Corning! A natural rival for the Bullies. Binghamton can’t be far behind.

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2 Responses to “Return to Glory (Pro Update 3-6)”

  1. syracusan said

    Holy crap. I never knew any of that stuff about the ABA. But when you said the “top 24” teams make the playoffs, I had a feeling something was amiss. Who knew? It comes off as kind of charming, actually.

  2. Matt said

    Rochester beat Vermont last night in the ABA to win their 34th straight at home. Z had 19/11. No Rodman…
    ‘RazorSharks CEO Orest Hrywnak said Tuesday, “He was asking for a $25,000 appearance fee and that was just the start. He wanted first-class round-trip air fare from the West Coast, top-shelf hotel accommodations, limo service and other perks. It would’ve cost us upwards of $35,000.”‘
    Via Rochester D and C http://www.rochesterdandc.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070307/SPORTS/703070374/1007/SPORTS

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