HoopsHype rumors

June 14, 2013 | 09:28 PM ET Update

If another NBA team tries to pry Doc Rivers away from the Celtics, it's going to cost them dearly in terms of compensation. Rivers has a particularly strenuous and specific non-compete clause in his coaching contract, a provision the Celtics insisted on when they signed him to a five-year extension in 2011, league sources told CBSSports.com. CBSSports.com

Nuggets forward Danilo Gallinari could return by December as opposed to February, a league source told The Denver Post. Gallinari, who underwent knee surgery at the end of the season, had been projected by the Nuggets to miss half of the 2013-14 season. But Gallo posted a video on his official Facebook page Friday in Italian, and in the video Gallo said his left ACL wasn't torn and his recovery time will be "completely different" than previously reported, according to the Italian journalist Davide Chinellato. He is a writer for Italian La Gazzetta dello Sport and translated Gallo's video and posted the quotes on Twitter). Denver Post

Siena forward O.D. Anosike went through his first NBA pre-draft workout on Thursday, and after it was over, he heard encouraging words. "One of the scouts told me I look good in Boston Celtics gear," Anosike said. He hopes that's the case this summer. If not Boston, any NBA destination will do. The Celtics brought Anosike, who is a two-time NCAA rebounding champion, and five other college players into their practice facility in Waltham, Mass., to size them up in advance of the June 27 draft. "It's definitely an exciting time," Anosike said. "It's something I've been working toward for basically my whole career. Teams are only bringing you in if they have serious interest in you." Times Union

Jason Kidd's baptism into coaching will come in the city that houses "The Happiest Place on Earth." Kidd said Friday that he plans on coaching the Nets' summer league team in Orlando next month, hoping to use it as a learning tool as he dives headfirst into the next chapter of his career. "I think it's the best thing to get right into it," Kidd said on ESPN Radio. "I know that a lot of times head coaches don't coach summer league. But this gives me time to work on different parts of the game, learning to be a coach, also my philosophy and plays and the defensive stuff that I'll get to put in as my system. "So, I get to see if it works. If it doesn't work, [then see] what changes I have to make and work from there." Newsday

June 14, 2013 | 06:27 PM ET Update

Bryant wants to be "back next season with a vengeance," the source said. And he wants "two more cracks at it to win seven NBA titles at least." In other words, it's highly unlikely next season will be his last as Bryant and Derek Fisher lead all current players with five NBA titles, although the Spurs' Tim Duncan could tie them if San Antonio beats the Miami Heat in this year's Finals. ESPN.com

Bryant has always publicly maintained he will only play while he's able to play at an elite level. Next season is his final season under contract with the Lakers. A source with knowledge of the Lakers' thinking told ESPNLosAngeles.com that the team was planning to open extension talks with Bryant as soon as they were allowed to under NBA rules, which ironically came right after he ruptured his Achilles in a game against Golden State on April 12. Both sides would love to see Bryant retire as a Laker, sources said. But the Achilles injury complicated the issue, and especially the timing of talks about an extension. ESPN.com

After finishing his second day of interviews with the Clippers on Friday, former Memphis Grizzlies Coach Lionel Hollins left a big impression on L.A.’s front office, said several NBA executives who were not authorized to speak publicly on the matter. The Clippers were impressed with Hollins’ basketball IQ, demeanor and his ability to develop players, the executives said. “Everybody thought it went well,” one NBA executive said. Los Angeles Times

Birdmom share many similarities -- height, a laid back attitude and an affinity for tattoos. Holubec's legs are lined with colorful ink-filled flowers. She took her son to get his first tattoo. "I think I paid for the first four! It was supposed to have been just one," said Holubec. Local 10 Miami

Despite Andersen's recent success in Miami, the mother and son have not spoken in years, for a reason they'll keep private. Andersen has a past riddled with dark spots, including a two year ban from the NBA. She said if he showed up on her doorstep, she already knows what she'd say: "Where you been? Where you been? Definitely get in his face and ask him where you been? I've been right here, I haven't been nowhere." Local 10 Miami

A federal judge who labeled Michael Jordan's $5 million lawsuit against Dominick's food stores "greedy" ordered the former NBA star to appear in court this week for an off-the-record settlement conference in a locked courtroom. Jordan was allowed to avoid attention Wednesday by entering the Dirksen U.S. Courthouse through its underground parking garage and then taking a private elevator to U.S. District Judge Milton Shadur's 23rd-floor courtroom. Shadur, who has ruled that Dominick's is liable for a 2009 magazine advertisement that used Jordan's name without permission, wanted the owner of the Charlotte Bobcats to appear in person to hear the judge's views on what reasonable damages would be, according to court transcripts. He rejected a demand from Jordan's attorney that the president of the grocery chain also appear. Chicago Tribune

June 14, 2013 | 04:54 PM ET Update

Chris Bosh has been fined $5,000 for violating the league’s anti-flopping rules, the NBA announced on Friday via official release. The play, seen in the video clip above, occurred with 6:07 remaining in the second quarter of the Heat’s Game 4 win over the Spurs on Thursday, and was every bit deserving of the fine handed down from the league office. NBCSports.com

He took just four shots in the second half, missing all of them, and didn't have a free-throw attempt. The Heat defended him aggressively on pick-and-rolls, and Parker said he felt a little tired. "It was kind of weak," Parker said of his injury after Game 4. "I didn't know what to expect. So the first three, four minutes I was testing it, and the first half it felt OK. And the second half I think I got fatigued a little bit. But overall I'm just happy I didn't make it worse. "That was the goal, to not try to get hurt, because Pop was not really happy, meaning I wanted to play and took a little risk. So I'm happy I'm not worse." Yahoo! Sports

“I feel like my versatility will translate very well in the NBA, being the person that rebounds, gets up the floor and looks to make plays,” Porter said following his workout. “I feel like [the Wizards] would be getting a decent guy that’s coming in, just being down to the earth and ready to work hard and do anything for the team.” Washington Post

Spoelstra repeatedly dismisses the intense media scrutiny on his team as "white noise" or "manufactured storylines" that don't always reflect the level of support and stability the organization has shown over three decades. "Even though we had four coaches, it's been the same culture and relatively the same philosophy," Spoelstra said. "San Antonio has been the same way. So we don't see [success] as a coincidence. It's really a shame for the coaching profession that it's so volatile. But I'm also very grateful our organization doesn't behave in that manner." ESPN.com

June 14, 2013 | 03:52 PM ET Update

UNLV power forward Anthony Bennett is visiting the Orlando Magic today. Bennett is considered one of the top prospects for the NBA Draft, which will be held June 27. In 2012-13, as a true freshman, Bennett averaged 16.1 points and 8.1 rebounds per game. Orlando Sentinel

June 14, 2013 | 12:33 PM ET Update

Chris Paul and Dwight Howard have been in consistent contact recently about the possibility of becoming teammates next season, according to league sources. Paul and Howard will be the biggest free agents on the market this summer, and their desire is to play together, the sources said. "They would love to play together if somebody can make it happen," one of the sources said. ESPN.com

Howard is not particularly fond of the idea of returning to Atlanta, but he would do so to team up with Paul, the sources said. But Paul, despite recently being upset with the Clippers over the perception that he got coach Vinny Del Negro fired, is unlikely to leave Los Angeles, one source said. He has gotten over his anger with the club and likes living in Los Angeles. "It would be very tough for him to go to Atlanta," the source said. "He loved Atlanta when they should have drafted him in '05 but not so much since then. But hey, everybody is an option at this point." ESPN.com

The preference for both players would be to play together for the Clippers, according to the sources. Because the Clippers don't have enough cap room to sign Howard as a free agent, it would take a sign-and-trade deal with the Lakers to make it happen. The Clippers would be open to working out a deal, but they fear the Lakers would never trade Howard to them, according to the sources. ESPN.com

Sources say there was a faction of the Clippers organization that entertained the idea of trading Griffin for Howard when Howard wanted out of Orlando in 2012. But others within the franchise regarded Griffin as "untouchable," and there were never any serious discussions with Orlando. Multiple sources insist Griffin remains untouchable. But realistically he would have to be included in any deal that brought Howard to the Clippers. ESPN.com

Seems Kobe Bryant started a German trend ... 'cause NBA star Jermaine O'Neal took Kobe's lead and flew out to Germany for a special medical procedure that ain't exactly legal in the U.S. of A.. 34-year-old O'Neal -- a 6-time NBA All-Star -- just posted a photo standing next to famed German surgeon Dr. Peter Wehling along with the caption, "Just finished up my last day of a week long of treatments out here in germany with the great Dr Wehling!" There's only one reason O'Neal would go to Germany -- Regenokine ... a special procedure involving the manipulation of red blood cells that's believed to accelerate the body's healing process. TMZ.com

Cibona GM Vlado Vanjak tells @sofoklo13 Dario Saric "has not yet withdrawn his name from the NBA Draft," and is having "second thoughts. Vanjak told @sofoklo13 Dario Saric will "definitely play in Cibona next season," and he'll decide whether to withdraw "in a couple of days." Sportando

New Brooklyn Nets coach Jason Kidd (that is still really weird to type) swung by the Dan Patrick Show on Friday to talk about how he convinced Billy King this was a good hire. Other topics of interest came up as well, including how Jidd thinks John Stockton is the greatest point guard ever. I think Stockton gets overlooked in that conversation, but I still say Magic personally. NBCSports.com

The battles between the Pistons and Bulls came up more than once when Dumars and Jackson spoke. "The things that he and I talked the most about wasn't so much the Piston coaching position," Dumars said. "It was just about coaching in general, his perspective on coaching and coaches in general. It wasn't so much about the Pistons' head job. "We talked about some playoff series that the Pistons and Bulls had. We had some good conversations about that. But it was really about coaching in general. It wasn't about the Pistons job per se." Dumars also spoke with players coached by Cheeks, including former Pistons forward Rasheed Wallace, who played for Cheeks in Portland. "He was colorful," Dumars said, drawing a big laugh from media and employees gathered inside The Palace's West Atrium for the announcement. Booth Newspapers

Mike Miller has experienced a resurgence during the NBA Finals. He’s shooting 80 percent from three-point range for the Miami Heat and averaging 9.7 points per game. Watching Miller rise and fire, you might catch a glimpse of the teal band around his right wrist. The wristband reads ‘42 million.’ That’s the number of survivors of childhood sexual abuse in the United States. The other side of the bracelet reads “Lauren’s Kids”, a foundation the Heat have supported for the past three years. “The story is incredible and I’m just happy to be a part of it,” Miller told USA TODAY Sports. “I’ve seen a lot of things in life, and I’m happy to be a part of something that’s trying to make a difference and help spread the word.” For The Win

This insanely large and ornate Spurs-themed pizza — which not only features the Western Conference champions' logo and the Larry O'Brien Trophy, but also artfully deploys what appears to be pepperoni, ham, olives and green peppers to include the Spurs' wild-eyed Coyote mascot — comes to us courtesy of Big Lou's Pizza in San Antonio. According to the restaurant's Facebook page, ESPN requested a specialty Spurs pie when they were in the area shooting footage for their Finals broadcasts, and noted ginormous gastronomist Carlo — who I believe was behind a similarly gargantuan Gig 'Em-centric pie made to celebrate Johnny Football's Texas A&M team back in January — was all too happy to oblige. "We don't offer this pizza for sale," the restaurant's Facebook page notes. "It actually was given to all employees as well as people dining in to eat on site." Yahoo! Sports

June 14, 2013 | 10:24 AM ET Update

Now that the NBA’s prime coaching pool is shrinking by the day as Doc Rivers contemplates his Celtics future, Danny Ainge has no choice but to consider a backup plan if his coach of the last nine seasons leaves. Two league sources with direct knowledge of the situation confirmed yesterday that if Rivers does indeed leave, former Clippers coach Vinnie Del Negro will receive serious consideration as his replacement. Boston Herald

Rivers’ prolonged deliberation has forced Ainge to at least consider alternatives. The Celtics president of basketball operations is an admirer of the Springfield-born Del Negro and his up-tempo philosophy, even if Del Negro reportedly didn’t mesh with his biggest star, Chris Paul. “As a stopgap for that situation, sure,” said one source. “Vinnie would be the perfect person for what they need. All of the all-star coaches, or whatever you want to call them, are going, and knowing how Danny feels about him, (Del Negro) would be a good fit.” Boston Herald

“Vinnie made about $1 million in his last year with the Clippers, so he’s affordable. That’s the way the league is going. Some of these guys, like (Ryan) McDonough, are being paid like head scouts,” the source said of the former Celtics assistant general manager, who is now Suns GM. “The trend is going that way with coaches, too. Vinnie would be the perfect coach for that situation.” Boston Herald

Another issue has become a byproduct of Rivers’ inner debate, according to that same veteran NBA source. While the coach attempts to make up his mind, his assistants live in limbo. Their contracts expire on June 30, and as such, all have been forced into making backup plans of their own. “They’re being forced into looking for work, because they don’t have contracts,” he said. “The assistants really are a key to all of this.” Boston Herald

The Wolves have limited assets to swing such a deal, namely third-year forward Derrick Williams, second-year guard Alexey Shved and the ninth and/or 26th picks. They also likely will trade one of two veteran guards —Luke Ridnour and J.J. Barea —by draft night. Minneapolis Star-Tribune

Carlisle and the Mavericks went through something similar following their title run in 2011. Dallas failed to re-sign a number of key players from that championship team, including current Celtic Jason Terry and recently retired guard Jason Kidd. "Gut-wrenching" was how Carlisle described seeing those players leave, well aware that the road to repeating as champions would be daunting after their departure. CSNNE.com

"We're going to be active in free agency," said Carlisle, who did not specify any particular players the Mavericks were targeting. "We're an aggressive franchise by nature; our owner (Mark Cuban) is. And that's good. We're going to put together a good team." CSNNE.com

Likely partners are those teams facing onerous luxury tax bills next year. The potential is there to get a good, young veteran from one of those teams. So is he itching to start pitching deals? On the contrary; the talks have already begun. “It’s already started,” Dumars said at the introductory news conference for new coach Maurice Cheeks. “The phone calls for that have already started. The calls have already started because those teams are already facing it.” Detroit Free Press

Alex Kennedy: Shawne Williams is training at @IMGAcademy. Check out this awesome dunk from this afternoon's pick-up game. vine.co/v/blUbnADtUXV Twitter @AlexKennedyNBA

The Bucks and several other teams are undoubtedly doing their homework on Jordan Farmar. Farmar, the former first-round draft pick of the Los Angeles Lakers, spent this season playing for Anadolu Efes in the Turkish League. He signed a three-year, $15 million contract last July with Efes, but can op out after every season. “He wants to come back to the NBA, for sure,” said Tony Dutt, Farmar’s agent who also happens to be a friend of Bucks general manager John Hammond. “He’s still young and he could help some teams.” Racine Journal-Times

Lukas Kuba: During Nov & Dec, Jan Vesely, frustrated as he continued to see his role shrinking, had thoughts of wanting to say goodbye to the NBA. Vesely: "[At one point of last season] my agent told me if I'd want to ask for a trade, we could try something." Twitter

James had 33 points and 11 rebounds, Wade had 32 points, six steals, six rebounds and four assists and Bosh had 20 points and 13 rebounds in Miami's 109-93 victory against the San Antonio Spurs in Game 4 of the NBA Finals on Thursday, tying the best-of-seven series at 2. "Tonight was a Big 3 night. It just was," Heat reserve forward Shane Battier told USA TODAY Sports. "We all knew it on the bench. It was their night. When we have success, they receive a lion's share of the credit, and deservedly so. But when we have failure, they take a lot of the criticism as well. "They knew they were going to play better, and they just made it happen." USA Today Sports

Now it is the Spurs' turn to dwell on what they didn't do. And what the Spurs said about Ginobili was not unlike what the Heat were saying about James and Wade. “We need him to be a little more aggressive, be a little more selfish,” Tim Duncan said, “and hopefully we can find him a way to get him to do that.” And from Tony Parker: “We need to help him try to get his confidence going.” San Antonio Express-News

As the Heat prepared for Thursday's Game 4 of the NBA Finals against the San Antonio Spurs at the AT&T Center, Bosh said he has heard all the rumblings of how failure in this series could have him headed elsewhere. "You know man, I don't care," he said. "I keep saying it. At first, I used to care. But that hindered my game and they're going to talk about you, anyway." South Florida Sun-Sentinel

With the focus on LeBron James, and with Dwyane Wade a franchise mainstay, Bosh tends to be the name most often mentioned when it comes to the Heat's position against the salary cap, the luxury tax, and now against the Spurs in this third consecutive trip to the NBA Finals. "It's something that you can't ever overcome," he said of being the third wheel in the team's hierarchy but the team's leading man on the rumor mill. "So why should you even try to prove people wrong? I just play the game." South Florida Sun-Sentinel

Gregg Popovich said Tony Parker is "fine'' and that his hamstring had nothing to do with shaky 2nd half. "No, Miami did a great job on him,'' Popovich said of Parker hurting. "They doubled him and got it out of his hands.'' Sulia

Parker plans to take full advantage of two days to rehabilitate the Grade I strain leading up to Game 5 on Sunday at the AT&T Center. “(Rest) is going to be huge for me,” said Parker, who also had nine assists in 32 minutes. “Those two days I’m going to make sure I do a lot of treatment and get to 100 percent. Tonight I was not 100 percent. By Sunday that’s my goal, to be good to go.” Parker intimated that he had to convince coach Gregg Popovich to play. “Overall I’m just happy I didn’t make it worse,” he said. “That was the goal, to not try to get hurt, because Pop was not really happy, meaning I wanted to play and took a little risk. So I’m happy I’m not worse. I just told Pop, let’s see how it feels in the first quarter. And I told Pop I’ll be honest with him if it doesn’t feel good after the first quarter. We’ll shut it down and not take a risk to get a tear.” San Antonio Express-News

“I injured myself early in the season last year, so I didn’t play most of the end of the season, half of the season,” said Jared Cunningham, who was in Corvallis for the opening of the basketball practice facility. “I’ve pretty much been rehabbing and getting ready for summer league.” Corvallis Gazette-Times

Cunningham said it was a challenge to get used to the NBA game and lifestyle. “So it was pretty much new to me,” he said. “I think I adjusted pretty well. As far as the injury happening, that kind of set me back, but right now I’m pretty much healthy. I’ve been working out since the season ended, since April.” He said he’s back to running, jumping and, yes, dunking. “I just ice every day and pray,” he said. Corvallis Gazette-Times

Iola is a small town 4 hours away from San Antonio. Population: 401. It's the type of town where everyone knows each other, and if you're born there, you usually stay the rest of your life. Chris "Birdman" Andersen was raised in the middle of Iola with his mother, Linda Holubec, and his two sisters, Tammy and April. "Typical kid, lot of energy, loved to go to school, play and go fishing," said Holubec. Local 10 Miami

Chicago Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau said Rose's speed and explosiveness are back to where the former MVP feels like himself again. "I worked him out about a week ago," Thibodeau said in a phone conversation Thursday. "It was great." ESPN.com

The Timberwolves conducted another round of predraft workouts Thursday, then new president of basketball operations Flip Saunders slipped out of Target Center to catch a flight to see Indiana guard Victor Oladipo on Friday. Saunders flew to Las Vegas two weeks ago to watch Russian guard Sergey Karasev in a pro-day workout. On Thursday, he headed to the Washington, D.C. area to see a player the Wolves would have to move from their ninth pick into the top five -- or maybe even top two — to draft. Minneapolis Star-Tribune

Saunders says Oladipo has the “It” factor, “whatever that is,” he said last month. “There’s just something about him,” Saunders said. “I’ve seen him take over a lot of Big Ten games.” Minneapolis Star-Tribune

"The only way Doc Rivers doesn’t come back is, after having a rest (this summer), he’s burned out and he wants to take a year or two off,’’ Tommy Heinsohn told FOX Sports Florida. "But to the best of my knowledge, he has a great working relationship with ownership and with Danny (Ainge). After his experience in Orlando where he’s named Coach of the Year and then he isn’t good enough and they fire him, he knows what it's like elsewhere. I think only if he’s burned out he doesn’t come back. I think he’s in a great position with the Celtics. He’s been around long enough to know how it is other places. … I’m about 80 percent sure he’ll be back. But it’s up to him.’’ Sulia

Patrick Ewing, a North Carolina Tar Heel? Hard to imagine, we know. But when you hear the Georgetown legend's reasoning for not picking the Tar Heels, it would be hard to knock him for not teaming up with Michael Jordan under head coach Dean Smith. Ewing appeared on "The Dan Patrick Show" and explained why he didn't head to Chapel Hill. "You know, I was close [to attending UNC]. I was close. North Carolina was a very good school but, you know, when I went down there they put me in that Carolina Inn and there was a big Ku Klux Klan rally in North Carolina when I was there," Ewing said. "And I'm like, 'You know what? I'm not coming down here. I'm staying my butt back in Boston.'" New York Daily News

“Any time you hire a coach, you can say it’s a risk because there’s a chance it may not work. But I just feel comfortable and confident with him,” Nets general manager Billy King said. Kidd outlasted his toughest competition, Pacers assistant Brian Shaw, and received a three-year deal, with a possible fourth, for a potential $10 million. Kidd declined to reveal the staff he still is putting in place. But before he could compile a staff, he had to interview. “I went in not sure [but was impressed by] his knowledge of our roster, his knowledge of other teams,” King said. “He’d talk about this play that such and such a team runs and he named it and said it would be good for Brook [Lopez]. He drew up a [Spurs] play: ‘They run this and I could see Brook doing this. And we’ve got to get Deron [Williams] to do this.’ New York Post

“I’m nervous. I’m a rookie,” Kidd said. “In Brooklyn we have a special opportunity to achieve that status to be a championship-type caliber team, so I’m looking forward to being a part of that [by] being unselfish, communicating and being tough. “It’s just a matter of working hard. I’m a guy that took notes. I’m going to tell Deron [Williams], tell any player to grab a book and keep a diary, because you never know where the game of basketball will take you,” Kidd said. “I started that process right before we won a championship in Dallas. I’m excited for this opportunity.” New York Post

Anne Kidd told The Post yesterday at Kidd’s introductory press conference in Brooklyn she was shocked when the future Hall of Famer informed her of his retirement. Kidd retired 11 days ago with two years left on his Knicks contract and was officially introduced as the Brooklyn Nets head coach yesterday. “I was totally shocked,’’ Anne Kidd said. “He told me he’s retiring and I was like ‘Don’t retire.’ I thought he had a little bit more in him to play.’’ New York Post

Sometimes “Mother knows best,’’ and Jason Kidd’s mom wanted her son to stick it out and play at least one more season for the Knicks. Anne Kidd told The Post yesterday at Kidd’s introductory press conference in Brooklyn she was shocked when the future Hall of Famer informed her of his retirement. Kidd retired 11 days ago with two years left on his Knicks contract and was officially introduced as the Brooklyn Nets head coach yesterday. “I was totally shocked,’’ Anne Kidd said. “He told me he’s retiring and I was like ‘Don’t retire.’ I thought he had a little bit more in him to play.’’ New York Post

The Nets head coaching search eventually filtered down to two candidates, Jason Kidd and Indiana Pacers assistant Brian Shaw, said general manager Billy King. In actuality at the end, there was only one, Kidd, even while Shaw went through a lengthy interview on Wednesday. “I’m disappointed because I did not speak to Billy directly but I did give him permission to talk to him and wrote him a note letting him know what I thought [about Shaw],” said Pacers president of basketball operations Donnie Walsh Thursday. “He’s going to be a great head coach. Great head coach.” New York Post

Q: Will you coach next season? George Karl: "I don't know. I'm talking to Memphis and have had basically preliminary conversations with L.A. (Clippers) and Memphis. I don't think there's anything that's going to happen this week. If there is, it's going to be with someone else, it's not going to be with me. ... I want to coach three to four (years) at least. But I want to coach a good team. I don't want to coach a rebuilding team." Denver Post

Upon being fired last week, Nuggets coach George Karl told team president Josh Kroenke, "I think I should tell you, I think it's very stupid." The controversial firing of the reigning NBA coach of the year has led to much debate in Denver. On Thursday afternoon, Karl sat down with The Denver Post and discussed an array of topics, including his firing, his future (possibly landing with the Memphis Grizzlies or the Los Angeles Clippers) and the future of the Nuggets, a team he believes could have won 55 games next season, even with Danilo Gallinari out for much of the season due to knee surgery. "I'm not going to stand here and justify my (playoff) record," Karl said, but he believed the franchise was on an upward tick, "and to blow that away, it leaves you helpless, speechless, powerless, sad, a lot of words." Denver Post

Q: Can you describe your desire for a contract extension, heading into the last year of your contract? A: "I didn't demand an extension. I said to Josh, 'I will coach this team next year, I'm excited about coaching this team next year, but in the last year of a contract, there are things that could happen.' I didn't say they would happen, I said they could happen. I said I didn't think I deserved a three-year extension, but it's a signed contract (with an option), so let's compromise. I don't think I deserved to get my option picked up, even if we won in the first round (of the playoffs), but there's a middle ground. The thing that annoys me every day still is the fun connection we have with this team. They think they can unplug us and plug somebody else in, and I'm going, 'Wow, that is not respectful of the coaching profession.' " Denver Post

Kobe Bryant will sit down with late night host Jimmy Kimmel for a conversation at the Nokia Theatre on Aug. 15 to raise money toward eliminating homelessness in the Los Angeles area. "Kobe Up Close" will feature Bryant talking about his career and sharing some of his favorite stories with Kimmel. Tickets for the event range from $25 to $200. Minneapolis Star-Tribune

Spurs coach Gregg Popovich stood up for Sebastien de la Cruz, an 11-year-old raised in San Antonio who was the subject of racist tweets following his national anthem performance before Game 3 of the Finals on Tuesday. “I would like to say that I would be shocked or surprised by the comments,” Popovich said Thursday during his pregame press conference before Game 4. “But given the fact that there’s still a significant element of bigotry and racism in our nation, I’m not surprised. It still plagues us, obviously. And what I was surprised by was how proud these idiots are of their ignorance, by printing their names next to their comments.” SI.com

A packed outdoor deck behind a popular Miami-area sports bar collapsed during the NBA Finals on Thursday night, sending dozens of patrons into the shallow waters of Biscayne Bay. Three people were critically injured. Lt. Ignatius Carroll of Miami Fire-Rescue said late Thursday that 100 people fell into the water. He said rescuers pulled patrons from the bay, and that divers were searching waters underneath the collapsed deck as helicopters shined spotlights onto the area. ESPN.com

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