HoopsHype rumors

February 26, 2013 | 08:05 PM ET Update

Marc J. Spears: Bucks C Samuel Dalembert will not be receiving a buyout, a source told Y! Sports. He's suspended vs Dallas tonight for violating team policy Twitter @SpearsNBAYahoo

Jefferson has enjoyed more team success than with the Celtics and Timberwolves earlier in his career. He’s refined his game and become more consistent. While it’s still a sore spot, he believes he’s improved his defensive game. "Utah’s been the best thing that ever happened to my career," Jefferson said. "This team has been the best thing that ever happened to me." Salt Lake Tribune

Fisher cited the desire to spend time with his family as his reason for leaving Dallas in late December after starting nine games for the Mavs. However, the suspicion among his temporary Dallas teammates was that the five-time NBA champion would join a contender later this season. "It wasn't a big surprise," one Mavs veteran said. "We expected him to end up with the Lakers or OKC." ESPN.com

If anything, these comments bring a bit more credence to a pre-All Star break column by Jason Whitlock, FoxSports.com’s opinionated and occasionally controversial writer, who detailed the jumbled mess that became of the NBA Players Union, ending in the firing of executive director Billy Hunter. In it, Whitlock, aided by a candid interview with former NBA player Maurice Evans, speculated that Fisher only used the Mavericks as a way to keep his position as union president. Oklahoman

The Timberwolves have moved on, to an injury-filled season that once again won't turn out like they hoped it would. Former Wolves Michael Beasley and Wes Johnson have moved on as well, to seasons here in Phoenix that also have not turned out like they hoped. Each played just three minutes in Sunday's home loss to San Antonio. "Building up to it," Beasley said about trying to establish his NBA career now with his third team in his fifth NBA season. "I feel like it's kind of starting over for me, trying to build up to what I believe in my heart I can do. But like I said, it's going to be baby steps. I still got a lot of learning to do." Minneapolis Star-Tribune

He was cited for driving with a suspended license and expired registration, driving with excessive speed and failure to display a license plate on the back of his vehicle. I asked him after shootaround this morning if he missed Minnesota. "Minnesota is a great city," he said. "I do miss the city. It's a nice organization. Do I miss it? Probably not. I try to make my own way, put my past behind me. But I do miss some people there." Minneapolis Star-Tribune

February 26, 2013 | 06:13 PM ET Update

While it remains to be seen whether Mayo, Brand and Kaman return for the Mavericks’ future, Nowitzki is a given. And Jennings said he’s let himself think about running the pick-and-roll, one of his specialties, with the Mavericks’ future hall of famer. “That would be crazy,” Jennings said. “At the end of the season, we’ll just see what happens. As far as right now, I’m just trying to help this team get to the playoffs and win basketball games.” Dallas Morning News

In a series of tweets over the last two days, Donte Greene has been less than subtly lobbying for the 15th spot on the Nets roster. Greene was supposed to join the team in training camp but broke his ankle in a pick-up game just days after the invitation was extended. Now, the 6'11" small forward out of Syracuse says he's ready to go. A week ago, Marc J. Spears quoted a source as saying "Free agent forward Donte Greene is 100% cleared to play after recovering from fractured ankle & is working on conditioning." Spears listed nine teams from whom the source said Greene had received inquiries, including the Nets. Then the last two days, Greene has replied to and retweeted Nets fans who have asked him to hurry up and sign with the team. Here's a sampling... NetsDaily

Celtics co-owner Wyc Grousbeck told WEEI's Mut and Merloni Tuesday that his team was very active at last week's NBA trade deadline despite failing to get a blockbuster deal done. Grousbeck said the names of Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett came up the most in trade talks. "For the last two or three days before the deadline, their names came up more than anybody else," Grousbeck said. "They were the topic of conversation with the calls coming into us, because people thought maybe we weren't going to keep it together this spring." On why the Celtics didn't pull the trigger, Grousbeck said, "I know what the offers were. You wouldn't have taken them." Boston Globe

Washington Wizards center Nene’s right shoulder was so sore during Monday night’s 90-84 triumph over the Toronto Raptors that he barely was able to raise his arm over his head in the visitors’ locker room shortly after contributing significantly in the fourth quarter of a third consecutive win. So it came as no surprise that Nene was limited Tuesday afternoon in practice at Verizon Center, with the Wizards preparing to try to avoid a four-game season sweep by the Detroit Pistons. Washington plays its nemesis Wednesday night at Verizon Center. “Sore, he’s sore today, so he didn’t do a whole lot,” Wizards Coach Randy Wittman said of Nene. “We didn’t do a whole lot anyway, just going over some things we needed to clean up. A lot of shooting [for the team], but he didn’t, I mean he was down there [on the practice court], but we actually didn’t do any contact anyway.” Washington Post

A rugged rookie season might be over for Mavericks’ first-round draftee Jared Cunningham. The No. 24 overall pick said today he’s suffering from tendinitis in his right knee and is going to be out “for a while.” He said his sights already have been set toward the 2013-14 season. “My goal is to be completely ready for summer league,” Cunningham said after the Mavericks’ shootaround. “I want to get my body back to the way it was in college so I have my athleticism.” Dallas Morning News

What made you want to get involved and become a St. Jude Ambassador? Marc Gasol: That’s easy. The kids. To be able to walk through those doors, be able to spend time with them and play with them is one of the best parts of my life. I think I’m very lucky to live here in Memphis where I can get to St. Jude often. It’s a place where you maybe think at first that you’re going to cheer them up by playing with them. But what I find is that they play with me and it makes me happy. One day we might read a book or do drawings. Another day it’s making cupcakes with different toppings. We even have tea parties and, yeah, I get right down there at the those little tables. Sometimes I get to hear the older kids tell their stories. All the time I spend with them is very special. NBA.com

Hamed Haddadi won't forget how to call home any time soon. The recently twice-traded center went with a number switch as he joined the Phoenix Suns. Haddadi, who wore No. 15 during his five seasons with the Memphis Grizzlies, now will wear No. 98. And, per ESPN's Arash Markazi, the number is a tribute to his homeland as 98 is Iran's country code required for phone calls from the USA. USA Today Sports

Ex-NBA player Shawne Williams has pled guilty to possession of a controlled substance following his December arrest ... when cops busted him for smoking a blunt inside his Porsche. As TMZ previously reported ... Williams was popped in a parking lot in Tennessee after a cop said he smelled weed coming from inside Williams' Panamera. Williams reportedly confessed to the officer that he had weed and codeine (cough syrup) in his car. Following the arrest, Williams was charged with possession of a controlled substance (for the weed) and possession with intent to sell (for the codeine). TMZ.com

February 26, 2013 | 12:39 PM ET Update

One rival team executive projects that the 76ers will negotiate language into Bynum's contract that provides them with some level of protection -- maybe a team option after two years, based on incentives -- in case his knees fail him. It will be worthwhile for them to continue to manage Bynum's health in order to derive the benefits of his potential. The worst alternative would be for the Sixers to let go of a 25-year-old with a sophisticated low-post game as well as All-Star and championship experience -- and then watch him thrive elsewhere. SI.com

Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski will not return to coach USA Basketball after the Blue Devils' season, he said Tuesday. Talking in a phone interview with ESPN Radio's "Mike & Mike in the Morning", Krzyzewski said USA Basketball will likely name his successor this summer in preparation for the 2014 world championships in Madrid. "I've loved, loved, loved, and it's been an honor being with the USA Basketball team," Krzyzewski said. "And to coach the team and work with [chairman and president Jerry Colangelo] for seven years has been marvelous. "And we're in a good spot," Krzyzewski added. "We need to keep building." ESPN.com

A person close to USA Basketball told USA TODAY Sports on Tuesday morning that it is highly unlikely Colangelo can convince Krzyzewski to return. The person requested anonymity because he was not authorized to speak publicly about the coaching situation. USA Today Sports

Collins got his contract option for the 2013-2014 season picked up in October, so he is under contract for at least one more season. There have been grumblings that Collins may be tiring of the NBA grind and wanted more control over the basketball operations side of things in Philly. Sources close to the situation say Collins is ready to see his contract through, beyond that its unclear. The 76ers still view themselves as a playoff team, but if they struggle to make the dance the 61-year old Collins may be ready to call it a day. He is clearly one of the guys to watch especially during the postseason. HoopsWorld

Sacramento's new plan to finance a downtown sports arena may wind up being vastly different than the deal reached last year between the city and the owners of the Sacramento Kings. City officials said Monday they aren't starting from scratch in their quest to develop a financing plan for an arena, but acknowledged in a staff report to the City Council that last year's plan "and all its detail will likely change in this scenario." The City Council will be asked tonight to give top city officials the go-ahead to begin formal arena negotiations with a private investment group interested in buying the Kings and keeping them in Sacramento. The council is also being asked to commit $150,000 to pay consultants and attorneys to represent the city. At the moment, the council still hasn't officially been briefed on whom the city will be negotiating with. It's widely known, however, that Mayor Kevin Johnson has been talking to Southern California billionaire Ron Burkle and 24-Hour Fitness founder Mark Mastrov. Sacramento Bee

As a rule, NBA players treat Violet Palmer no differently than her male counterparts, which is the way she likes it. “I’m a referee,” she said, “and I’m there to call a game.” Palmer, 48, has been in the NBA since 1997, when she and Dee Kantner became the first female officials to work for a major professional sports league in the United States. “Back in those early days, I never thought of myself as any kind of pioneer or a barrier breaker,” Palmer said. “I was just getting a chance in a game that I love and was too concerned with doing all of the things right to earn that position. “But as the years have gone by and I’ve been asked to speak at a lot of career days and the subject comes up each year with Black History Month, I have come to understand the significance. I’m proud of having done something that nobody else has done and I’m most hopeful about having opened the doors for other young women in the future.” NBA.com

“They could be a Martian for all I care,” said Heat forward Shane Battier. “As long as they get calls right, are approachable and don’t have an ego trip, it doesn’t matter who it is blowing that whistle. “I really think Violet is one of the better officials. She’s decisive in her calls. You’re allowed to talk to her. That’s all we want.” NBA.com

February 26, 2013 | 08:11 AM ET Update

The 38-year-old southpaw who won five titles in two stints playing alongside Kobe Bryant, signed a veteran’s minimum deal with the Mavs on Nov. 29 on the heels of Dallas benching Darren Collison. Fisher immediately took over as the starter until he asked for and received his release on Dec. 22 so he could spend more time with his family, as he explained in a prepared statement. Apparently with 26 games left before the start of the playoffs, family concerns are no longer an issue for Fisher, who wore No. 6 for the Mavs because, as he said, he joined them on a quest for a sixth title. “This is not a pit stop,” Fisher told his new Dallas teammates. Lo and behold, he will also wear No. 6 for the Thunder. He will make his second OKC debut in as many seasons at home Wednesday against the New Orleans Hornets. So how do the jilted Mavs feel about this turn of events? Owner Mark Cuban did not reply to multiple emails on Monday, but one league source said the best way to describe the mood of the Dallas front office is “agitated.” The source said that Fisher and his representatives never contacted the Mavs during his decision-making process to discuss a possible return to Dallas, the team that, in good faith, initially signed him. NBA.com

The source said that Fisher’s departure before Christmas seemed to come out of the blue. Of course, in 2007 when Fisher played for the Utah Jazz, he did have a late-season family emergency. His 11-month-old daughter suffered from cancer in her left eye and required surgery in New York. After the playoffs, Fisher asked the Jazz to release him from his contract so he could concentrate on finding the best care for his daughter. After saying, “life for me outweighs the game of basketball,” Fisher would soon sign a three-year deal to return to the Lakers. NBA.com

D.J. White is still waiting for his release from Shanghai of the Chinese Basketball Association, and as a result the forward will spend another night in street clothes in the Celtics locker room - this time as his future teammates play Utah. “They’re shut down on weekends – there’s just a lot of paperwork to do,” Danny Ainge said of China. It just takes a few days. I don’t know when he’ll be done with it – tomorrow is my guess. You strategically sign 10-day contracts. If he can’t play tonight, we’ll sign him on Wednesday or Thursday.” Boston Herald

The Rockets filled their open roster spot by signing center Tim Ohlbrecht to a three-year deal. As with the contracts given to Patrick Beverley and Greg Smith, the second and third seasons are with team options. Ohlbrecht averaged 13.4 points, 7.4 rebounds in 32 games with the Rio Grande Valley Vipers. He led the NBA Development League in shooting percentage, making 60.5 percent of his shots, and blocked shots, averaging 1.63 blocks. Houston Chronicle

In Orlando, Udrih already has a comfort level with coach Jacque Vaughn, who was his teammate in 2006-07 with the San Antonio Spurs. "I've been here three days, and I've already felt more at home than I did in Milwaukee for a year and a half," Udrih said Monday. "It was just a bad situation there. I'm a professional and I'm a man, so I like to be told straight-up what they expect from me. So, in Milwaukee, that never happened. They were saying, 'Yeah, yeah, we know. We've got to play you a little bit more.' But it never happened. So when I did get into the game I didn't know what they actually wanted to do, so I was just trying to find it myself, and I never did." "I wanted a change. I wanted a new start, so I'm really happy to be here. I know Jacque and J.B. [James Borrego], the assistant coach. It's just a really exciting moment for me and my wife." Orlando Sentinel

At the time of the trade, he was perplexed to read that he was past his prime. "Yeah, I'm a vet if you look at the team we have here," Udrih said. "I'm 30 years old, but I still feel fine. I take care of my body. I'm still only 30. It's not like I'm 34 or 36 or that age. I can still do a lot on the court. We'll see. I really feel comfortable in the sets we have on offense and defense, so I'm going to be fine out there." Orlando Sentinel

Well, Sebastian Telfair, acquired before Thursday’s trade deadline, is happy to be a Raptor. He has already seen dysfunction this season. “This is my ninth year in the league so I definitely don’t want to go through anything like we were going through in Phoenix,” Telfair, who will suit up for his first game as a Raptor on Monday against Washington, said. “You’ve got a goal to win and if you’re not winning you at least want to be out there competing at the highest level. We weren’t doing that over there in Phoenix this year. I’m happy to be a part of a team that got a goal for themselves and night in and night out they’ve got something to achieve.” National Post

A shower after the game Sunday was unnecessary for Shannon Brown. "I did it earlier," he said with a grin. Brown, like the 14,923 fans in attendance at US Airways Center, watched the Suns lose to the Spurs, 97-87. He never checked into the game. It was his fourth straight DNP-Coach's Decision, the only four games he has missed this season. "It bothers me every night," he said. "It bothers me from when the first time I didn't play. But I kind of felt it because my minutes was going down a little bit. You get that feeling, especially when you've invested as much as I am into basketball and basketball being my life and me loving it like I do. I got that feeling kind of and slowly but surely it started to happen. "It hurts. It is what it is though. I understand it's a business and I can't take it too personal." Arizona's Sports Page

Last year, Brown found himself out of the rotation only to start the season's final 17 games when Grant Hill was injured. "I got to be professional about it," Brown said. "When I get my number called again, get out there and try to be productive. "It ain't easy. I definitely think it's undeserved. There's a lot of things I could say but I'm going to just stay professional about the whole situation and let the season play out." Arizona's Sports Page

After signing Carlos Delfino last summer, Morey could sacrifice others in a trade without weakening the team, and that's how he squeezed the Kings for Thomas Robinson, the No. 5 pick. Look, Robinson was unimpressive with the Kings, but he's only 21 and the Rockets put themselves in position to give him a chance to become a solid player, without tapping into their prime assets. It was a worthy gamble. If Robinson is slow to develop, you figure Morey will use him to turn 50 cents into a dollar once again. "We tried to move up to get Thomas Robinson in the draft." Morey said. "He led the country in rebounding. He can run the floor. He's a big- time athlete, a guy you want around the rim. We think he'll get quality minutes and turn into a quality player." SportsonEarth

But three for 14 tied his worst of the season when he's had more than 10 attempts. He was also three for 14 in the season opener against Dallas. "I can't get down on myself," Howard said. "For the most part, the same form and everything was straight. Some were just long. I've just got to continue to practice and they'll start falling. But I'm not going to get discouraged. I'm going to beat this." The Lakers made only 14 of 31 as a team (45%). "I'm not going to dwell on it much just because nobody steps up there and wants to miss it," Lakers Coach Mike D'Antoni said, later adding, "If you miss 17 foul shots and get beat by 11, you can kind of do the math." Howard is making 48.5% of his free throws this season. He is a career 58.1% shooter from the line. The Lakers swear Howard makes 75% to 80% of his free throws in practice. Of course, that's without a crowd. And the pressure of a game. "I don't want to compound it. [Howard] had a tough night at the free-throw line," Kobe Bryant said. "He's been shooting the ball pretty well recently. It was like an off shooting night." Los Angeles Times

Nene, a Washington Wizards center, was a 23.8% shooter from midrange before he tore his ACL in 2005. Since then, he's knocking down about 41% of his midrange attempts. Before tearing his ACL in 2008 as a member of the Philadelphia 76ers, Jason Smith shot a below-average 36% from midrange. Since returning, he's shot 45%, including 50.3% (78-for-155) this season playing for New Orleans. "It kind of gives you a laser focus on shooting, because it's really all you can work on for a while," said Smith. "Now, my midrange jumper is a big part of my game, where it really wasn't before." Wall Street Journal

To find out, the Journal looked at 34 NBA players who have torn an ACL since 2003. To factor out the effects of age, we limited the sample to the 20 players who were 26 years or younger at the time of the injury. Since coming back, those players have shot 42% from 16 to 23 feet— up from 38% before their injuries, a fairly significant improvement. That statistic looks even more persuasive when you consider that for players in that age range who have spent at least five years in the NBA and did not sustain an ACL injury—midrange shooting actually declined to 39% in their most recent season from 40% when they were rookies, according to Stats LLC. Wall Street Journal

Taj Gibson celebrated the birthdays of Jerry Reinsdorf and Joakim Noah on Monday by having an MRI performed on his sprained left knee. Well, not really, but the confluence of such events seemed fitting for a star-crossed Bulls team these days. For every celebratory moment — a blowout win in Charlotte, Noah turning 28 — a somber one follows in the form of a convincing loss to an elite team or another injury. At least Gibson's MRI didn't reveal a torn ACL, although it did confirm a sprained MCL that could sideline the defensive-minded forward up to two weeks. Fortunate, too, is the fact the Cavaliers come to town Tuesday, a team the Bulls have solved 11 straight times by an average of 17.8 points. Chicago Tribune

While making his way to speak to reporters on Monday before the Wizards took on the Toronto Raptors, Coach Randy Wittman tripped over some cords in the locker room and nearly hurt himself. Of course, tripped is describing it lightly. “He did a triple jump,” Nene said afterward. When Wittman returned to the locker room to make his final preparations for the game, his players decided to make light of his mishap. They greeted him with four bright orange cones surrounding the loose wires. Handwritten signs read, “Coach’s tripping area,” and “Danger!!! Help Coach watch out for cords.” Washington Post

For the season, the Jazz are averaging 18,790 fans, which is more than 500 fans below last year’s average and nearly 1,200 under capacity. While it certainly isn’t at a crisis stage, the Jazz are well aware of the attendance decline and expressing some concern. “It is significant, but not to any real degree that it raises any red flags,’’ says Jazz president and CEO Randy Rigby. He proudly points to the fact that the Jazz still rank 9th in the NBA in attendance and stand at 94 percent of capacity. “We never like to be down, but we also recognize there are a number of elements that come into it,’’ he said. “It’s down a little bit because in the early part of the season you’re up against all football and those things. It ebbs and flows to a certain degree, but we feel like we always have a very loyal fan base. We’re not really overly concerned about where the numbers are right now.’’ Deseret News

Hugo and the New Orleans Hornets' Honeybees recently visited Ochsner Medical Center on the West Bank to raise diabetes awareness through the 2013 Dribble to Stop Diabetes Initiative. The Hornets partnered with the American Diabetes Association, Sanofi U.S. and Ochsner Health System to host a support group that provided attendees with information on how to prevent and take control of the disease. Ann Moll, hospital education manager for Ochsner Medical Center and site coordinator for the Diabetes Management Center, said activities such as these are beneficial to participants. “It’s important, because it energizes people and it allows them to review important information,” she said. “They might fall off of their schedule with their diet and this gives them that little nudge to get back on track and know that it’s OK, because nobody is perfect 100 percent of the time.” New Orleans Times-Picayune

For instance: Did you know Rajon Rondo is the Garry Kasparov of Connect Four? Well of course he is. From SI: The Celtics didn't want to change Rondo when he arrived, but they didn't want to him either. So at charity foundations he perched behind a folding table where he could avoid the back-slapping, baby-hugging and other standard forms of celebrity fakery. He just played Connect Four, against anybody who dared, usually two grids at a time and sometimes three. "This has been going on for six years," Matt Meyersohn, the Celtics' director of community relations, said on Dec. 22 during an event at the Blue Hill Boys & Girls Club in Dorchester, Mass. "He's played hundreds of Connect Four games, maybe a thousand. And he's never lost." Later that day Rondo sat behind a table and three girls. Across from him there were more than 100 children he had showered with bikes, Razor scooters and iPod Touches that he bought at Target and distributed from the back of a U-Haul. "I thought he might let us win," said a 12 year- old named Olissa. "But he was so serious." SB Nation

Rondo doesn’t like game-time decisions. “They just want an excuse if they don’t play well.” Rondo doesn’t like playing grab-ass. “I’m not trying to make friends. We can talk in the summer.” Kevin Garnett: “With Rajon, there ain’t no [expletive]ing around.” Rondo admits, ”A lot of times I’ll be shooting and think, Maybe I should pass.” Jason Kidd once told Rondo: “If you’re going to shoot, you need to have your mind made up that you’re going to do it.” Kevin Wilk, Rondo’s physical therapist: “The [Adrian] Peterson type, the [Derrick] Rose type, the Rondo type, these are perfectionists with a meticulous approach to everything they do. If guys like that are doing 10 reps, and the eighth isn’t right, they’ll start over where someone else will stop. They won’t ever shut it down.” Brian Scalabrine: “There’s no one in the history of our game like him. He’s the the most interesting player I’ve ever known. How does someone who is 6-foot-1 get 18 rebounds? How does someone who doesn’t run fast break get 20 assists? How does someone who never shoots get everybody open? We cannot begin to understand how he does it.” WEEI.com

Since the team’s move to the AT&T Center for the 2002-03 season begat the long rodeo road trip, the Spurs have found various ways to bond. The latest experience was a repeat of something they did three years ago: A mid-afternoon stop for In-N-Out burgers near the Oakland Airport. “It was one of those carpe diem moments,” forward Matt Bonner said. “You know you shouldn’t be eating a grease-laced double burger with fried onions, fries and a milk shake, but once in a while, you’ve got to go for it. It was one of those things where no one will claim responsibility, but everybody enjoyed it.” Even Parker, a native of Paris who considers himself a sophisticated diner, partook of the fast-food fare. “That was awesome,” Parker said. “We did the same thing about three years ago, too, and that was awesome, too. Even though I’m a gourmet guy, it doesn’t hurt to eat a double-burger sometimes. I had two double-doubles and a milkshake. I was hungry.” San Antonio Express-News

Not all the Spurs were thrilled about the experience. Guard Manu Ginobili was sated from lunch at one of his favorite Italian restaurants near San Francisco’s Union Square when the bus pulled into the In-N-Out parking lot. “I was coming from lunch, so it was a bad idea,” he said. “Tiago (Splitter) and I ate lunch in San Francisco, but it was a team thing, so I ate a burger and had a shake.” Stephen Jackson was ambivalent about the experience. “It was good, but I don’t like In-N-Out like that,” he said. “Fatburger, Sonic, Five Guys, but not In-N-Out. But I ate one.” San Antonio Express-News

Flamboyant former NBA star Dennis Rodman is heading to North Korea with VICE media company — tattoos, piercings, bad-boy reputation and all. The American known as "The Worm" is set to arrive Tuesday in Pyongyang, becoming an unlikely ambassador for sports diplomacy at a time of heightened tensions between the U.S. and North Korea. Rodman, three members of the Harlem Globetrotters basketball team, a VICE correspondent and a production crew from the company are visiting North Korea to shoot footage for a new TV show set to air on HBO in early April, VICE told the Associated Press in an exclusive interview before the group's departure from Beijing. It's the second high-profile American visit this year to North Korea, a country that remains in a state of war with the U.S. It also comes two weeks after North Korea conducted an underground nuclear test in defiance of U.N. bans against atomic and missile activity. USA Today Sports

VICE said the Americans hope to engage in a little "basketball diplomacy" in North Korea by running a basketball camp for children and playing pickup games with locals — and by competing alongside North Korea's top athletes in a scrimmage they hope will be attended by leader Kim Jong Un. "At a time when tensions between the two countries are running high, it's important to keep lines of cultural communication open, no matter how non-traditional those channels may be," said Shane Smith, the VICE founder who is host of the upcoming TV series. "It's important to show North Koreans that America is not their enemy, and playing a game we both love is a step in the right direction." USA Today Sports

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