HoopsHype rumors

February 27, 2013 | 07:53 PM ET Update

Now, with Marc J. Spears tweeting that Greene's going to work out for NBA teams at Eastern Michigan University Sunday, the Nets are not among those interested in signing him for the rest of the season or even offering him a 10-day contract. According to a league source, "the Nets right now are not interested." The Nets have an open roster spot. NetsDaily

As the Friday deadline looms for NBA franchises to file for relocation, Seattle’s hope of acquiring the Kings from Sacramento appears to be fading. “It’s now Sacramento’s to lose,” one NBA source close to the bidding process told David Baumann of Sports Talk Florida. “The Seattle investment group was supposed to deliver a non-refundable $30 million dollars to the Maloofs (by Feb. 1), but it never happened. The Seattle group wasn’t going to make that down payment without the NBA’s approval to move the team.” Sports Talk Florida

Adding to Seattle’s anxiety is the last ditch effort by Kings minority owner John Kehriotis to retain the team in Sacramento. It was reported Tuesday that Kehriotis had developed a financial plan in the range of $750M in order to purchase the franchise and build a new arena, according to FOX40 in Sacramento. “The minority owners have right-of-refusal (to stop the sale), so their voice will be heard if they make a bid by Friday,” the league source told Baumann. However, the source also suggested that Kehriotis’ buzzer-beating bid may be too haphazardly put together. “This 11th-hour bid is nothing more than a distraction, if anything,” the source said. Sports Talk Florida

Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson, who spent 12 seasons as a player in the NBA, has been leading a separate investment group aimed at keeping the Kings in town. “This could present a challenge for Mayor Johnson and his group,” said the league source. “They (Kehriotis’ group) are mounting a separate bid away from the Mayor’s bid.” The source estimated that Johnson’s bid was in the range of $580M. Sports Talk Florida

Yet a commemorative cup can only communicate so much of a fan's passion. We need something more, an item that's already a part of our daily routines. Thankfully, the fine people at Card.com are here to help. As noted by Ian Levy at Hickory High, basketball fans can now purchase debit cards featuring the images of Memphis Grizzlies point guard Mike Conley and Phoenix Suns point guard Goran Dragic Yahoo! Sports

February 27, 2013 | 06:21 PM ET Update

Shaun Powell: Agent Mike Conley says Greg Oden will not decide on his next team until July. Cavs, Heat and Celtics in running. Twitter @Powell2daPeople

Kevin O’Connor, Utah Jazz Senior VP of Basketball Operations, recently sat down with 1280 The Zone to discuss, among other things, Bell's situation. "We'll be willing to look at a buyout. We're not just going to let him walk away; we're paying him the money. He can't get all the money from us and then get more from the Lakers, 'Oh Thank you!' I'd get fired for that — I'd fire me for that," O'Conner said in the interview. Deseret News

O’Connor said that if it were in the best interest of the team, he would keep Bell under contract so that he doesn't sign with the Lakers. The Lakers currently trail Utah and Houston for the final playoff spot in the West. "Raja said 'I'll take a buyout.' We said it from the start, all we want is a minimum buyout. We never heard from him. He never said yes to it; we would have done it right away." Deseret News

Already a favorite on Facebook and Twitter since his rise to stardom last year, popular NBA point guard Jeremy Lin has taken to new unchartered social media territory--Instagram. Lin announced via his Twitter page Tuesday that he had launched a new Instagram page. "Just started instagram today...follow me: JLIN7 2. Remember to keep voting at http://mad.jeremylinfoundation.org #MakingADifference 3. Nap time!" tweeted Lin a day before his team, the Houston Rockets (31-27), plays the Milwaukee Bucks on Wednesday. LatinosPost.com

February 27, 2013 | 03:49 PM ET Update

Indiana Pacers center Roy Hibbert’s status for Thursday’s game against the Los Angeles Clippers is uncertain as the NBA reviews his altercation with Golden State players during the fourth quarter of Tuesday’s game at Bankers Life Fieldhouse. Hibbert apologized after practice today. “My mom was a little upset,” Hibbert said. “She said I should have walked away. It’s unfortunate it happened. I watched the video and I saw there was a little kid that ran up out of his seat when all that happened. I apologize to the fans that were sitting courtside. We’re a team that loves the fans and we don’t want to scare them away.” Indianapolis Star

Tony Parker spent time in the summer playing basketball in his father's native Chicago during his youth, but was mostly raised in France. When it came time to decide the next step of his burgeoning basketball career, the San Antonio Spurs' guard was "very close" to going to UCLA or Georgia Tech before opting to begin his pro career in France. That decision, according to Spurs coach Gregg Popovich, is the primary reason why Parker has seemingly flown under the radar for so long. "I've often thought that he didn't have a name here," Popovich said. "He just came in from Europe. Had he been a college player here and done what he did at 19, he wouldn't have been the 28th pick for sure. He would have been first, second or third. He would have been high in the draft and would have been talked about here like the kids who were young studs that are just coming out." Yahoo! Sports

"LeBron is the best player in the NBA, by far. But if you want to give it to someone to change it, why not [me]?" Parker said with a laugh. "Charles Barkley had it one year [1992-93] even though M.J. [Michael Jordan] was the best player. Steve Nash got it [twice from 2004-06] even though Kobe [Bryant] was the best player in the NBA. But for me the most important thing is we win. "If it [the MVP] happens, it happens. If not, LeBron is unbelievable. But for me, I don't think about it. It's not in my hands." Yahoo! Sports

At one point during the discussion, Bayless said that a source inside the Sixers organization told him that the most recent MRI on Andrew Bynum’s knees showed degeneration, meaning in effect that they will never return to full strength. Bynum was also a no-show in the locker room prior to Tuesday's game, when he was scheduled to give an update on his condition. Bayless continued by explaining that Andrew may show some flashes of the dominance he displayed last season, when he averaged 18.7 points and 11.8 rebounds per game for the Lakers, but he will be unable to sustain it, as the knees will never be able to fully recover. Philadelphia Inquirer

February 27, 2013 | 12:55 PM ET Update

Salmons, making $8.08 million this season, is scheduled to earn $7.58 million next season and $7 million in 2014-15. But only $1 million is guaranteed in that final year, which could make Salmons an intriguing trade piece this summer and beyond. “I’m not sure,’’ Salmons said when asked if he could be dealt and might not even be with the Kings if they move next season to Seattle. “I don’t know. Who knows what’s up with the move? Who knows what will happen? It’s all up in the air.’’ FOXSports Florida

But according to Robinson’s former teammate, Tyreke Evans, the rookie was frustrated with his role in Sacramento and likely needed a change of scenery to truly develop. Evans compared Robinson’s rookie year to date with current Utah Jazz forward Derrick Favors, the No. 3 pick of the 2010 draft, who was involved in trade rumors from the day Brooklyn drafted him until being traded 56 games into his rookie season. “[Robinson] is going to be pretty good,” Evans told HOOPSWORLD. “He’s young and got a lot of talent. He was a little frustrated here, but the same thing [happened] with Derrick Favors. He was in New Jersey frustrated, went to Utah and now he’s playing good.” HoopsWorld

But one warm spot between the countries is apparently basketball, something the Vice media founder Shane Smith realized while filming two documentaries in North Korea recently. He visited the country’s national museum, the Hall of Trophies, where a Michael Jordan-signed basketball given to the former leader Kim Jong-il in 2000 by Secretary of State Madeleine K. Albright is displayed prominently among national treasures. Kim Jong-il was obsessed with the Chicago Bulls dynasty of the 1990s, a fascination he apparently passed along to his son, the current leader. “It’s weird because when you go there, it’s all very anti-American,” Smith said. “North Korean kids are fed anti-American propaganda from pretty much the day they are born. But it’s O.K. to like American basketball.” New York Times

So Smith hatched a plan to take some of those Bulls players to North Korea for one of the installments of a series Smith will host on HBO, called “Vice,” featuring news and footage from around the world, which will make its debut April 5. Smith did not go through the State Department but received permission through his previous contacts and the North Korean ambassador to the United Nations. Smith said he was sure that Kim Jong-un’s love of basketball was why the trip was approved. He quickly found that Jordan was not likely to be a willing ambassador. “But Dennis is up for anything and everything, ” Smith said. He then recruited the Globetrotters to round out a team, and they offered up Anthony Blakes, known as Buckets; Alex Weekes, known as Moose; and Will Bullard, known as Bull. Ryan Duffy, a Vice correspondent who is on the trip, will also join in on the games to fill out the team. New York Times

The group plans to spend four to five days, visit a children’s sports camp and play some games with North Korean players. They tried to make a good first impression with the North Korean news media upon their arrival. “I’ve always loved Korea — North, South, doesn’t matter,” Bullard told reporters. “I’ve always loved Korea personally. We all do. We love every place that we go. They all accept us for who we are. We’re role models. We have great characteristics. It’s all family fun.” In a bit of unintentional hilarity, one of the reporters asked Rodman whether this was his first visit to North Korea. “It is my first time,” he said. “I think it’s most of these guys’ first time here.” New York Times

Rodman quickly took to his Twitter account to talk about the trip, writing: “I’m not a politician. Kim Jung Un & North Korean people are basketball fans. I love everyone. Period. End of story.” On a less diplomatic note, he also wrote, “Maybe I’ll run into the Gangnam Style dude while I’m here,” apparently unaware the pop star Psy is South Korean. New York Times

February 27, 2013 | 08:43 AM ET Update

Colangelo, chairman of USA Basketball, said Tuesday by phone that Golden State Warriors forward David Lee, a former University of Florida star, approached him at All-Star Weekend earlier this month in Houston to indicate his desire to play for Team USA. And Colangelo is intrigued. “He’s had a heck of a year,’’ Colangelo said. “He’s been healthy. He’s been with us before but he had injuries.’’ FOXSports Florida

Cuban, who said there was “no side deal” regarding family issues when Fisher signed with the Mavs, sarcastically claimed he understood Fisher’s decision to resume his career with a contender. “His kids are older,” Cuban said. “It’s easier to fly in and out of Oklahoma City than Dallas. I understand that. It’s a decision a parent has to make. Every parent has difficult decisions to make.” Moments later, Cuban added: “A lot can happen in 65 days.” ESPN.com

It was a confrontation. It was a melee. It was a tete a tete, and any other French term I can summon. And, oh yeah, the Pacers won their ninth game in the past 11, 108-97. “I’m sure I’ll hear from the league in the morning,’’ Hibbert said. “I’m guessing I’ll miss a game. But I know my teammates have my back. They had my back (Tuesday night). I’ve been on teams in my five years here, something like that happened, they left you alone on an island. This team, the guys look after one another. Everybody ran over and protected me.’’ Indianapolis Star

Make no mistake: Lee started the thing as surely as the Pistons’ Ben Wallace started the melee in Detroit. Hibbert defended himself, first against Lee and then against Curry. What’s he supposed to do when a little guy comes running at him? “I’m a mellow guy,’’ said Hibbert, who seemed embarrassed by the whole thing. “I don’t talk trash, I just go out and play tough. I’m not a thug, just a laid-back, gentle guy.’’ Which is true. Indianapolis Star

Advanced statistics illustrate that Kidd—No. 3 in NBA history in made 3-point shots—has been getting an abundance of open looks, almost as if defenses are daring to him to shoot while he fights through this cold streak. In November, when made 51% of his attempts and 49% of his three-point tries, he was being left open only 55% of the time. In 10 games this month, he has been left open for a whopping 71% of his jumpers, according to Synergy Sports. He hasn't made teams pay for it: Kidd's connected on just 17% of his open shots in February. Wall Street Journal

Kidd insists playing time isn't the problem. "The shots I've had have all looked good; felt good—nothing to do with minutes. It's just the game of basketball, where they go in or sometimes they don't," he said, adding that the nature of the misses—short and long, rather than right or left— leaves him confident. Wall Street Journal

In honor of center Andrew Bynum, who didn't make a public appearance in the Wells Fargo Center during Tuesday night's game against the Orlando Magic, his 76ers teammates didn't show up, either. A season that has become a long trudge through quicksand took another stumbling step toward oblivion with a 98-84 loss to the Magic. If the prospect of losing the game ever concerned the Sixers, it wasn't noticeable. "I certainly didn't see this effort coming. It's mind-numbing to me," coach Doug Collins said. "Youth is a blaming thing. After a while, the talk gets old. It just does." Philadelphia Inquirer

On the Derrick Rose front, Thibodeau wouldn’t budge on shedding light on where Rose is this week. “Just daily improving, that’s all,’’ Thibodeau said, as Rose continued his rehab from May surgery to repair his torn left ACL. With three home games this week, the feeling was that if there was a good time for the MVP to return it would be now, but there were no signs of that on Tuesday. “I just go day-by-day,’’ Thibodeau said of a return this week for his point guard. “I just want him to continue to improve, when he’s ready, he’s ready. His focus is on the rehab, our team is focused on their improvement and the opponent, and at some point hopefully he’ll rejoin us.’’ Chicago Sun-Times

Just as he formulated the thoughts to answer the second query, Maynor walked by Williams’ interview with The Oregonian and interjected with his own opinion. “He’s ready now,” Maynor said. “I’m telling you, he’s ready to go. Did you get that on tape?” Well, Williams isn’t quite ready just yet. He’s been cleared to run and jump, but he’s still working to build strength in various muscles along his left leg, including his calf, quadriceps and hamstring. His Achilles tendon has healed nicely, but Williams spent nearly three months in a boot following Sept. 14 surgery and he’s still working to get his leg back into playing shape. Oregonian

Isaiah Austin knows he faces a decision about whether he plays basketball at Baylor or in the NBA next season. At the moment, the 7-1 freshman from Arlington Grace Prep has far more pressing concerns. With six losses in eight games, Baylor must begin a climb back to NCAA Tournament contention quickly – as in Wednesday’s game at West Virginia. So the stay-or-go talk is on hold. In various mock online drafts, he’s projected anywhere from No. 6 to the middle of the first round. “I’ve thought about it a little bit,” Austin said. “Right now, it’s not where my mind is at. We’re struggling in the Big 12. We’re trying to make this run so we can hopefully make the tournament. “That’s what everybody wants to do when they’re in college. They want to get to the Big Dance. They want to get out there and show everybody what they have.” Dallas Morning News

Adetokunbo's talent was recognized by first division Spanish team Zaragoza in December when they elected to sign him to a four year contract. He will move to the ACB next season—barring complications with his passport—but reportedly has comfortable NBA out clauses at the end of each year, including this summer. Adetokunbo's agent, Giorgos Dimitropoulos, says that he will almost certainly be entering his name in the 2013 NBA draft to gauge his prospects, and that there is an “80-90% chance” he will stay in. While nothing is set in stone at the moment, NBA teams likely wouldn't mind leaving a talent like Adetokunbo in Europe for a couple of years to develop on a team like Zaragoza that is known for working very well with young players. DraftExpress.com

Most of Filathlitikos's success has come thanks to the homegrown talent they developed and integrated onto their roster over the years, with head coach Takis Zivas coaching both the club's senior and U18 team since its inception 15 years ago. Many of the club's young players are the sons and daughters of immigrants from Russia, Ukraine, Poland, Albania and Nigeria. Thanks to the Adetokunbo's arrival, Greek basketball might have the most interesting prospect the country has seen in many years on their hands. Despite never having played for any of Greece's youth (U16, U18, U20) national teams in an official capacity, Giannis has drawn considerable interest as of late both in his home country and abroad, with eight NBA teams already having traveled to see him. An invitation to the senior national team is reportedly in the works for this summer, if his citizenship issues can be resolved of course. DraftExpress.com

It's popular to say that a prospect--particularly an obscure one-- “plays every position on the floor,” but in the game we watched in Greece, that was indeed the case. The competition level, as you can see in the video scouting report above, is indeed nothing to write home about, but it's difficult not to be taken aback by the incredibly versatile skill-set Adetokunbo brings to the table at 6-9. DraftExpress.com

In an interview Tuesday on ESPN Radio, Krzyzewksi reiterated he wouldn’t return after having won Olympic golds in 2008 and 2012, the Worlds gold in 2010 and a Worlds bronze in 2006. He said, “My stance hasn’t changed. I've loved, loved, loved, and it's been an honor being with the USA Basketball team. And to coach the team and work with Jerry these seven years have been marvelous.’’ But Colangelo won’t consider anything official until he talks with Krzyzewski. “We haven’t had a conversation,’’ Colangelo said. “All I’ve heard (about Krzyzewski saying he won’t return) is second hand… Until he and I have a final meeting after this season, then I’ll know one way or another. I always have a Plan B or Plan C in place.’’ FOXSports Florida

This marks the second consecutive season that a former Laker has quit on the Mavs. Unlike Lamar Odom, Fisher at least had the decency to stop cashing paychecks signed by Cuban. Asked if he planned to stay away from ex-Lakers, Cuban said, “In protection of my [Twitter] timeline, I’m not going to say anything.” ESPN.com

Bobcats owner Michael Jordan has purchased a 12,310-square-foot lakefront home in Cornelius, N.C., for $2.8 million. The home is about 22 miles north of uptown Charlotte where the Bobcats play their home games and where Jordan owns a spacious condo. Public records show the home, which had been foreclosed, was purchased Feb. 19 by the Jordan Family Gift Trust from First Community Bank. CBSSports.com

Any rumor missing? E-mail us at   hoopshype@hoopshype.com.