HoopsHype rumors

January 1, 2013 | 09:14 PM ET Update

Nate Robinson never worried about whether his non-guaranteed, $1.15 million contract would become fully guaranteed, which happened Tuesday. "I just play ball, man," Robinson said. Robinson's guarantee date came nine days earlier than the league deadline for most contracts. The energetic guard is one of the few shot creators on the Bulls and is averaging 11 points in 21.2 minutes on 41.6 percent shooting. Chicago Tribune

Colorado's star forward won't make a decision on whether to return for his senior year or declare himself eligible for the NBA draft until after the 2012-13 season ends. The Buffs (10-2) open up Pac-12 play on Thursday at No. 3 Arizona (6 p.m., ESPNU). "I'll decide when everything is said and done," Roberson said after a New Year's Day practice at the Coors Events Center. "After the season, I will sit down with coach (Tad) Boyle and come to a conclusion." Boulder Daily Camera

January 1, 2013 | 06:43 PM ET Update

The first one was to recall rookie Jared Cunningham from the Texas Legends. The rookie averaged 18.1 points in seven games while at the Frisco farm club for the Mavericks. Dallas Morning News

In another move, Carlisle instituted a dress code for everybody on the team’s chartered flights. No more sweatsuits. Starting with today’s trip to Washington, it’s business casual for all players, staff and ancillary travel personnel. Dallas Morning News

“I was very clear to him [Saturday] about how he played,” Nene said. Against Chicago, Seraphin scored 12 points and had six assists, but he got to the free throw line just once. “He played much better,” Nene said, comparing Seraphin’s performance against the Bulls to an outing he’d had two games earlier against Cleveland, when Seraphin had just four points, no rebounds, and no trips to the line. After that game, Nene said he had gotten mad at Seraphin and told him to start playing better. “There are a lot of things he needs to clean up,” Nene said. “He has a lot of bad habits he needs to fix.” Washington Times

Derrick Rose will travel on the Chicago Bulls' two-game trip to Orlando and Miami, but coach Tom Thibodeau downplayed expectations of a more expedited return from knee surgery. "You don’t want to rule out anything," Thibodeau said. "But he has to go through regular practice for an extended amount of time before we even think about him playing." Chicago Tribune

January 1, 2013 | 03:39 PM ET Update

Don't expect Ricky Rubio to make the trip because of that stiff back that caused him to miss Saturday's victory over Phoenix. Rick Adelman said it didn't make much sense to put Rubio and his spasming back on a plane to Utah and Denver for back-to-back games, the second of which he's wasn't going to play anyway. Instead, unless there's a late change in plans before the team flies today, they'll keep him here for treatment and try to get him healthy for Saturday's game against Portland. Minneapolis Star-Tribune

January 1, 2013 | 12:53 PM ET Update

So after Cousins' latest dustup with the Kings (a one-game suspension after a halftime verbal altercation with coach Keith Smart), it wasn't surprising to see reports saying the Kings were willing to entertain offers for the mercurial big man. And it wasn't surprising to see over the weekend an ESPN report saying the Pistons and Celtics were "highly interested" in dealing for Cousins. I can't speak on the Celtics, but I've reached out to Pistons' brass in the past few days and let's just say a lot has changed since June 2010. But let's just entertain the thought the Pistons MIGHT be interested in Cousins. The Kings would be laughed out of the league if they agreed to any deal that didn't include Monroe or rookie center Andre Drummond. USA Today Sports

And let's get this out of the way -- the Pistons aren't the least bit interested in dealing away Monroe or Drummond. Drummond is untouchable and Monroe is at the level just below. A source e-mailed me with this Sunday night: "We have two, young big men -- they're 'Pistons.' " USA Today Sports

All signs point to the Bulls fully guaranteeing Nate Robinson's one-year, minimum contract by Tuesday's deadline. Robinson's guarantee date is nine days earlier than the league's. His contract was structured as such in part to make it attractive as a piece in an early-season trade because he could be waived. The Bulls recognize his scoring prowess and ability to create his own shot on a roster lacking in both areas. Chicago Tribune

Leaving his immediate NBA future in doubt, free agent center Kyrylo Fesenko is finalizing a contract agreement with Ukrainian club BC Donetsk, league sources told RealGM. Fesenko’s agent, David Carro, confirmed the deal is close to being signed for Fesenko to end his NBA training to play in Ukraine. RealGM

Carmelo Anthony will test his knee before tonight’s game against Portland. He doesn’t know when he and Amar’e Stoudemire will play together, but Anthony is looking forward to that after practicing yesterday with his star teammate for the first time since October. “It felt good seeing him back out there, running our offense, getting him back into the flow of things and just playing within the system and everybody’s feeling comfortable out there,” Anthony said. “He’s fitting right in. Right now it’s all about him getting his legs underneath of him. When he’s ready to come back our arms are open for him.” Sulia

Businessman-sports lover Manuel V. Pangilinan has not totally shelved plans of buying into a National Basketball Association (NBA) team as he continues to study offers. Pangilinan said in an interview with reporters that he is seriously looking at offers for him to invest between five percent and 10 percent in an NBA team. He refused to divulge the names of the teams but hinted that he is looking at a team in the Western Division of the NBA. These teams include Los Angeles Lakers, Oklahoma City Thunders, Los Angeles Clippers, Memphis, San Antonio Spurs, Golden State Warriors, Houston Rockets, Denver Nuggets, Minnesota Timberwolves, Utah Jazz, Portland Trailblazers, Dallas Mavericks, Phoenix Suns, Sacramento Kings, and New Orleans. philstar.com

January 1, 2013 | 09:24 AM ET Update

After undergoing preseason knee surgery, New York Knicks All-Star forward Amar'e Stoudemire will make his season debut on Tuesday night against the Portland Trail Blazers, a league source told Yahoo! Sports. Yahoo! Sports

Stoudemire didn't speak to the media after practice. But Mike Woodson said he moved well, and the coach kept the door open for Stoudemire to make his season debut Tuesday night. "It's going to be up to him, based on how he feels," Woodson said. "That's got a lot to do with it. If he comes in and says, 'Hey, my knee is sore from yesterday's work,' then we've got to back off." Newsday

Josh Robbins: A rumor out there about the Magic are interested in trading for DeMarcus Cousins. The Magic are not interested in him. Twitter @JoshuaBRobbins

Out of the NBA and out of basketball since Houston waived him in October, the Wolves' former first-round draft pick has worked recently with two Los Angeles mediums who he says have guided him on a spiritual quest that dates to his childhood. "I've always just had a lot of questions spiritually because I always kind of seen stuff when I was a kid and I used to tell friends and they'd look at me and say, 'Lazar, you might need some help,' " he said laughing during a surreal post- practice conversation with reporters. "So they used to make fun of me. I just had a lot of questions because I've always just wondered." Minneapolis Star-Tribune

Hayward has a friend whom he claims has talked through such a medium to a brother who has been dead for six years. That relationship helped convince him to seek his own answers. "I've actually been able to see a spirit," Hayward said. "I can't talk to them yet, but I have seen them." He has spent the past two months pursuing a path of what he calls "meditation and spiritual healing and living in an enlightened state" while also waiting for a road back to the NBA. "I think it helps me cope with some of the things that go on in basketball and just in life," he said. "It really, really helps me a lot." Minneapolis Star-Tribune

White said in a statement Sunday that he would not comply with the assignment, but he was not scheduled to join the Rio Grande Valley Vipers until Monday. Rockets officials were still considering their next step, which could include a suspension. Houston Chronicle

But all of the extra work Williams put in may be coming back to haunt him now, after going through yet another rough outing in last night’s 104-73 blowout loss to the Spurs. “I think we’re a little out of whack right now, as a group,” Williams said after going 3-for-11 from the field and finishing with eight points, two rebounds and an assist. “I know I am, individually. I’ve got to play better. I’ve got to find ways to get going. “Even on bad nights, I don’t play like this. I don’t even feel like it’s me out there on the court. I’ve just got to snap out of it.” New York Post

“I put a lot of pressure on myself early,” Williams said. “I was really excited about this year. Coming into the season, I felt like we had a good team. “I still feel like we have a great team. I want to be able to help the team more, and play better. Tonight was just another night I didn’t help.” New York Post

Marion has watched as the Mavs have lost nine of their past 10 games, including the past six. And the losses don’t have him in a good mood. Especially those eight games this season where the Mavs have lost by 20 or more points. “Sometimes you’re going to lose games, but not lose by 20 points,’’ Marion said. “That’s a different story. “A loss is a loss, but sometimes the deficit is what’s killing us right now. You lose by three or four points, then so be it. That’s a tough break some nights, but (bleeping) 20 points? (Expletive delete)! That’s enough of that!’’ Fort Worth Star-Telegram

But Coach Monty Williams said they will continue to restrict Gordon's minutes. However, Williams declined to say if he would play Gordon beyond the 24 minutes he played played last Saturday. ``He’s still on a minute restriction,'' Williams said. ``We’ll play it by ear on back-to-backs for now, and make sure we’re doing everything we can to keep him healthy, and keep him in top shape. ``At the same time, I don’t want everyone else backing off their game because Eric is back and playing. We went through this tough time, but we also had guys out there gaining confidence by doing things they’d never done before in an NBA game. We want to couple that confidence with what Eric brings to the table.” New Orleans Times-Picayune

Timberwolves point guard Ricky Rubio didn't have the benefit of a training camp when he returned two weeks ago from March knee surgery, and now his body is talking to him about him. He missed Saturday's victory over Phoenix and didn't practice Monday because of back spasms that probably are due partly to eight months' inactivity and partly because Rubio is protecting that left knee. "Because you don't trust the knee, you're doing different things and it hurts different spots," Rubio said. "Two weeks ago, it was my groin and now's it's my back, so I have to deal with that and keep pushing it. Your body says, 'You've been out for a long time and you have to take it easy.' But there is no break here. "There are games every night. We're lucky it happened with three days between games so we can work on that." Minneapolis Star-Tribune

Trevor Ariza will not be back in uniform when the Wizards host the Dallas Mavericks on Tuesday at Verizon Center, but he would like for his status to change by the end of the week. “I hope so, man,” Ariza said. “Just have to keep progressing, keep getting better.” Washington Post

Here's part of what Beck told Kustok in the pre-game: We have heard pretty definitively that Phil Jackson is number 1 as he should be, as you'd expect he would be on the list. What we don't really know is timing. Will they hire Phil Jackson sometime this season? Would that be the goal? Do they want PJ to finish out the season and then go through a coaching search? How quickly do they want to move? NetsDaily

Former NBA player Marcus Williams has been banned from playing in China for six months after testing positive for marijuana, in what is said to be the first drugs case in the country's professional basketball league. The ex-San Antonio Spurs and Los Angeles Clippers player, who is with Shanxi Zhongyu Brave Dragons, was banned by the Chinese Basketball Association (CBA) on Monday after testing positive on December 9, state-run media said. Xinhua news agency said it was the first drugs case in the CBA league's 17-year history. "To all the CBA fans, Shanxi fans, sponsors, as well as my coaches and players, I sincerely apologise. I have let a lot of people down and I regret it," Williams, 26, said on his microblog on Sina Weibo, China's version of Twitter. SBS

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