HoopsHype rumors

LATEST HOOPSHYPE VIDEOS

January 26, 2015 | 10:54 PM ET Update

In fact, a pair of recent reports have cast doubt on whether Hollins and Johnson will still be with the team when the snow subsides. The Nets’ brass is prepared to “evaluate” Hollins, according to a report from ESPN. Johnson, meanwhile, was being discussed in trade talks with the Charlotte Hornets, who were offering a package including Brooklyn native Lance Stephenson, swingman Gerald Henderson and forward Marvin Williams, according to a report from Yahoo Sports. But according to a source with knowledge of the Nets’ thinking, the report about Hollins was untrue and the trade talks with the Hornets had ended. Still, the two teams could reignite negotiations closer to the Feb. 19 trade deadline. In fact, the Hornets have discussed sending Stephenson to Brooklyn no fewer than three times since signing him to a three-year, $27 million deal last summer, according to the source. Wall Street Journal

Coach Byron Scott said Monday that Bryant was in high spirits when they spoke Monday morning, adding that he “probably sounded worse than (Bryant) did. We all know how tough he is and he’s a trooper.” Scott said he also expects the Lakers guard to return to the court next season. “I think he’s already proven that with the Achilles’ last year,” Scott said. “Everybody said he was done and the first month of the season, he proved to everybody that he still has a lot left in the tank and I think he still has that hunger and competitive nature and will prove it again. At times, we don’t appreciate all the stuff he has been able to accomplish or appreciate how tough he is and all the things he’s come back with.” Orange County Register

The NBA All-Star starters were announced last week and only one Clippers player was voted in by the fans -- Blake Griffin. That means Chris Paul and DeAndre Jordan were both passed over for that honor. Not to worry, Clippers Coach Doc Rivers said he's been making some phone calls to try to get the coaches to vote those guys in as reserves. When asked how those conversations go, Rivers smiled. "Well, there's some begging," he said. "I offer them food, drinks and all of that kind of stuff." Los Angeles Times

In response to Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban saying the NBA should no longer allow fans to vote for who starts in the All-Star game, the league has revealed information that indicates the voting system is blossoming. "The NBA confirmed All-Star balloting saw a 28% increase in fan voting this year with more than 25 million votes cast,’’ a league source said. "The NBA, unlike MLB, is a digital-only program with no paper ballot in arenas. "This year, for the first time, the NBA made every player eligible to be voted for, so that obviously spread the votes out more than ever before amongst many more players. Also, the NBA started balloting later this year, so the voting window was 27 days shorter this year (67 to 40 days) and the numbers were still up by 28%.’’ Fort Worth Star-Telegram

January 26, 2015 | 09:21 PM ET Update

Alex Kennedy: Rival executive told me that restrictions put on tax teams and ugly contracts of Williams/Johnson are making it difficult for Nets to trade. The Nets could obviously dump those guys. But getting significant pieces back who would turn around their season is proving to be difficult. Twitter @AlexKennedyNBA

Alex Kennedy: Teams are calling the Magic to inquire about Moe Harkless. However, Rob Hennigan is asking for a ton in return (such as a first-rounder). Some believe ORL will keep Harkless/Nicholson and move on from Jacque Vaughn instead to see if a new coach could get more out of those guys. The takeaway is that Moe Harkless is viewed very differently by Rob Hennigan and Jacque Vaughn. Twitter @AlexKennedyNBA

Marc Stein: Hearing Earl Barron, who played so well at @nbadleague Showcase, has been offered China deal too good to pass as he awaits next NBA chance. Leaving Bakersfield Jam for China would afford Earl Barron time to come back after Chinese playoffs to resume search for another NBA gig. Twitter @ESPNSteinLine

THE TOP 100 PLAYERS OF THE CENTURY

From Jameer Nelson to you know who, HoopsHype ranked the best players so far in the 21st century.

   
January 26, 2015 | 07:47 PM ET Update

The Oklahoma City Thunder has recalled forward Grant Jerrett from the Oklahoma City Blue of the NBA Development League, it was announced today by Executive Vice President and General Manager Sam Presti. Jerrett has appeared in 10 games (nine starts) for the Blue this season, averaging 14.6 points, 5.5 rebounds and 1.1 assists in 25.6 minutes per game. During his most recent assignment, the forward helped the Blue to a pair of victories, extending the teams season-high win streak to eight games, while averaging 19.5 points on .615 (16-of-26) shooting from the field, 6.5 rebounds, 1.5 assists, 1.0 steal and 30.0 minutes per game. NBA.com

January 26, 2015 | 06:39 PM ET Update

Charlotte Hornets guard Kemba Walker received a second opinion on his left knee today in New York. Dr. David Altchek confirmed Hornets team orthopedic physician Dr. Marcus Cook’s previous diagnosis of a torn lateral meniscus in his left knee. Walker will undergo surgery, performed by Dr. Altchek, at the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York on Wednesday, Jan. 28. A timeline for his recovery will be determined following surgery. Walker is averaging 18.8 points, 5.2 assists and 3.8 rebounds in 35.6 minutes per game, leading the team in points, assists and minutes played. NBA.com

THE TALLEST PLAYERS IN NBA HISTORY

There's been 20 players 7-foot-3 or taller in the NBA. Sadly, most of them were no good.

   
January 26, 2015 | 05:27 PM ET Update

The Brooklyn Nets, increasingly worried about the team's recent lack of competitiveness, have launched an in-season evaluation of various facets of the team, including new coach Lionel Hollins, according to league sources. ‎The Nets lost consecutive road games last week to the Los Angeles Clippers ‎and Utah Jazz by 39 and 35 points, respect‎ively, sparking concern within the organization about whether Hollins' message is getting through. It's just the fifth time in NBA history that a team has lost back-to-back games by 35 points or more. ESPN.com

Nets ownership, sources said, is monitoring the situation closely, with Brooklyn having just fallen out of the East's top eight thanks to a 2-10 slide that coincides with ‎the franchise being up for sale. ESPN.com

Sources say locker-room tensions between the outspoken coach and some of his players are rising as the Nets continue to falter, with sources telling ESPNNY.com's Mike Mazzeo that Hollins' public criticism of various players this season -- such as Lopez and fellow big man Mason Plumlee -- has rankled ownership. ESPN.com

THE BEST NICK YOUNG QUOTES EVER

Swaggy P actually said all these things. We're lucky to have him in the NBA.

   
January 26, 2015 | 05:06 PM ET Update

If there is some good to come out of the rotator cuff injury that sidelined Kobe Bryant for the remainder of the season, it is that the Lakers could lose a whole lot of games the rest of the way and finally be in position to draft a Kobe guy—this time, Arizona’s Stanley Johnson. Several times in recent years, Bryant has formed a connection with a top prospect in the upcoming draft, with an introduction and the possibility of workouts and friendship. Those players wind up signing with Bryant’s agent, Rob Pelinka. Such was the case with Dante Exum last year, Derrick Williams in 2011 and James Harden in 2009. But the Lakers could, finally, wind up with a Kobe draftee. According to league sources, Pelinka is in position to sign the fast-rising Johnson, should Johnson do the inevitable and leave school early. As Arizona has pushed its way up the rankings—they’re 18-2 and currently No. 6—Johnson’s stock has soared. Sporting News

 

SOCIAL MEDIA PICTURES: PHOTOS PLAYERS POST

Just like everybody else, NBA players are spending more and more time on social media sites and photo-sharing services. Check all the pictures they are posting on Instagram, Twitter and more here.

   
January 26, 2015 | 03:45 PM ET Update

So it’s not an MVP award. But Hoops Hype’s “Tweeter of the Year” might be the next best thing for social media maestro Manu Ginobili, who has claimed the honor for the second straight time. The inquisitive Argentinian has 2.79 million followers on the popular site, no doubt a factor in his victory in the voting conducted by the USA Today subsidiary. He’s also a legitimately good Tweeter, parsing out everything from candid photos of his adorable kids to math riddles. “I love everything new, anything that looks like it will change things,” he said after last year’s victory. “I was very excited and I saw a lot of potential in the social network. It’s a very positive way to stay in touch with fans and reading news and be connected.” San Antonio Express-News

LIKE US ON FACEBOOK

You read HoopsHype on Twitter, but we want you to follow us on Facebook too. Like us to get the latest rumors, articles, videos and more on your Facebook wall

 
January 26, 2015 | 02:47 PM ET Update

NBA SALARIES BY COUNTRY

More than 20 percent of the money spent on NBA salaries is going to international players. Who's getting the biggest part of the pie?

   
January 26, 2015 | 02:04 PM ET Update

Still, given Oklahoma's state tax rate of 5.5 percent, if Durant established permanent residence in a non-income tax state like Florida, and played for the Wizards, he could potentially save more than $700,000 a year in taxes -- or more than $2.8 million on a four-year deal. "He's still paying Oklahoma tax on games in Oklahoma City," Packard said. NBA.com

"The player certainly wouldn't want to buy a house in D.C., because they'd be paying some of the highest tax rates," said Sean Packard, the tax director for Octagon Financial Services Wealth, the financial arm of the sports agency that represents NBA players like Stephen Curry, Wesley Matthews, David West and Giannis Antetokounmpo. NBA.com

David Aldridge: Me: But when you knew Cleveland wanted you, what did that say to you? JR Smith: When I first heard about the trade and the possibilities, it was kind of mixed feelings. It was like, this could be a blessing in disguise. But I don't want to leave 'Melo by himself. Because just being in this situation, it's tough. Being in this situation alone is worse. So that bothered me a lot. And then I kind of got selfish with it. This is the best situation for me as a person. And make the best out of any situation. And I think I am right now. All the players seem to be responding to me very well, and the coaches love me. So I have no complaints. NBA.com

David Aldridge: I saw Carmelo a couple of weeks ago. I had forgotten y'all played together in Denver as well as New York. So what is it like when you've been with a guy for so many years, and you get close, and then it's just over. JR Smith: That was the toughest part about the trade. We played together nine years. The bond, the camaraderie, the brotherhood that we gained, it's, I wouldn't say over, it's just discontinued. When you're playing with a person like 'Melo, you depend on him a lot, from on the court and off the court. I can always go to him for advice, just everyday life things, as well as stuff on the court. So I think that's the toughest part. But fortunately, coming to a team like this, I've also got him in a different person, between him and LeBron. It's pretty much the same concepts and stuff like that; it's just coming from a different voice. NBA.com

David Aldridge: Are there similarities both on the court and in terms of leadership between he and Carmelo? JR Smith: Yeah. I think he's more of a vocal leader than 'Melo is. 'Melo's more of a I'm gonna show what to do, and if you follow suit, that's what it is. 'Bron is more of an 'alright, this is what's gonna happen; you're gonna do this, this, this and this,' or you're gonna receive this. He's more of a vocal person than 'Melo is. 'Melo is more behind the scenes, still gets his work in and everything in, you just don't see as much. 'Bron is more, you see it. I don't think it's a right or wrong way; (but) it's definitely a different in the culture between the two. NBA.com

David Aldridge: I wonder if you and Shump view it as, we've got another shot here. We could go from worst to first in one season. JR Smith: Yeah. I mean, I definitely look at it like that. I think it was harder for Shump because it was his first trade. New York was his first team. He had so many, at the point in time when we got traded, that was all he knew as a player his first three, four years. It's tough because, other than that one year when we got the second seed, he's never won consistently at this level. So it's tougher for him than it was for me...right now, I think we're definitely -- I know he is, because he's pressing to come back from the injury -- but we're locking in as a unit more than anything. We came into the situation like, alright, man, it's just me and you until we see what the other guys are like. It's just us. And then meeting everybody, it was like, okay, it's all of us. NBA.com

But, D.C.'s Home Rule Act exempts people who work in the city, as Scherzer will from April through September or October every year, as he will, from having to pay D.C. income taxes if they reside outside the city. The Act was implemented to encourage non-residents to work in the city (and buy things, which are subject to local sales taxes). "Any non-resident of D.C. is not taxed by D.C., including the visiting players who go in there," said Mark Goldstick, CFO of Priority Sports, the Chicago-based agency that represents numerous NBA and NFL players, including the Wizards' Bradley Beal. "They are taxed by the resident state. Other states tax visiting players when they go in. D.C. does not -- at least for now." NBA.com

LIKE US ON FACEBOOK

You read HoopsHype on Twitter, but we want you to follow us on Facebook too. Like us to get the latest rumors, articles, videos and more on your Facebook wall

 
January 26, 2015 | 01:25 PM ET Update

The Philadelphia 76ers today announced they have signed guard Larry Drew II to a second 10-day contract. Drew was the 17th GATORADE Call-Up of the 2014-15 NBA Development League season. In six games played since joining the Sixers, Drew is averaging five points and four assists in nearly 19 minutes per game. Dating back to the start of the 2000-01 season, Drew is one of just 22 players to have recorded at least 26 assists within the first six games of a career. NBA.com

Jorge Sierra: Wish granted: Hassan Whiteside gets huge #NBA2K15 rating boost. shar.es/1bUkvw vine.co/v/OTO57dwBqrr Twitter @hoopshype

David 'Dubi' Pick: NBA free-agent Byron Mullens is now rep'd by Todd Ramasar. He last averaged 30.8 points and 14.5 boards per in China. Twitter @IAmDPick

Former Bullets center Manute Bol is being honored with a life-size bobblehead and a larger-than-normal bobblehead giveaway in Oakland on Tuesday. The first 10,000 fans at Oracle Arena for the Warriors-Bulls game will receive a 10-inch bobblehead of Bol, who was traded to the Warriors in 1988 after playing the first three seasons of his career in Washington. The Warriors will also unveil a 7-foot-7 bobblehead of Bol on the main concourse as part of a promotion to raise money for the team’s community foundation. Washington Post

NBA DANCERS ON INSTAGRAM

Aside from player and team Instagram pictures, you can now check out the photos NBA cheerleaders are posting online on HoopsHype.

   
January 26, 2015 | 12:14 PM ET Update

More than a decade ago, Bryant wanted to get away from Los Angeles, and the team he wanted to join was the Wizards, where he would join forces with his mentor Michael Jordan. Those plans evaporated when then-Wizards owner Abe Pollin parted ways with Jordan in 2003, a year before Bryant became a free agent, but as Wizards fans pine over the idea of Kevin Durant coming to Washington as a free agent, the near-miss that was Kobe-to-DC finally can be shared. “That’s true,” Bryant confirmed recently. “A long time ago? Yeah.” Washington Post

“The challenge had been thrown down upon me, of not being able to win without Shaq. A public challenge never really bothered me too much, but he made a couple of comments as well. I think he called me Penny Hardaway Part 2 or something like that. So that’s what [ticked] me off,” Bryant said. “Then it was like, ‘Listen, you know the step back that I took to help us win championships. Let’s not get [expletive] confused. I can dominate on my own. I decided to stay here and win championships and sacrifice MVPs and scoring titles and all that stuff.’ So once that was said, it was like a line in the sand now.” Washington Post

Had he joined Jordan in Washington, Bryant is certain only one result would’ve unfolded. “We would’ve put together a great team and we would’ve won championships,” Bryant said. “Listen, man. There are not a lot of players in this league that say, ‘Come hell or high water, we’re going to get this [expletive] done.’ People can look around and joke around about winning, saying they want to win. For me, it’s a matter of life or death. It was that important to me. And if it’s that important to me, I’m going to get there.” Washington Post

Under this much pressure, pipes and ventilation ducts are prone to burst. But Ramon Sessions can’t think about the expectations he’s yet to reach, or else it might do him more harm than good. “I’ve been doing this for eight years,” Sessions told Cowbell Kingdom last week. “I’m going to continue to do what I do. And the rest of it, it is what it is.” Cowbell Kingdom

BUZZ METER: WHO'S TRENDING IN THE NBA TWITTERSPHERE?

Who's the man of the minute in the NBA Twittersphere? Find out here who's getting the most mentions at any given moment.

   
January 26, 2015 | 11:44 AM ET Update

Since Waiters’ first game with the Thunder on Jan. 7, Jackson has averaged just 19.5 minutes. He’s averaging 9.1 points, 3.7 rebounds and 2.4 assists over that same span. Oklahoman

Hassan Whiteside rarely needs a push to be more aggressive, but when Dwyane Wade noticed him hesitate to contest a layup early in the fourth quarter Sunday, he quickly got in his face. “That’s your paint,” Wade yelled during the next timeout. “Block everything that comes down there.” Whiteside simply replied, “OK.” Palm Beach Post

Late in the first quarter of Sunday's 108-98 win over the Oklahoma City Thunder, a disoriented Kevin Love went to the foul line. The Cavaliers' power forward looked out of sorts as he missed his first free throw. He then got the attention of team trainer Steve Spiro to signal something was wrong. He stayed in the game and knocked down the second free throw. As he trotted back on defense, it seemed as if he was himself again. After the game, Love revealed what he was going through earlier in the contest. "Everything was spinning there for a little bit," Love told Northeast Ohio Media Group. "It just happened. I was a little shocked. It was a scary moment, but I was good after that." Cleveland Plain Dealer

With his sprained left ankle taped up, his swollen right knee wrapped up, and still awaiting a brace for a sprained left wrist, Stoudemire quietly muttered, "Guys, it [stinks] getting old." Stoudemire may be just 32 years old, but it's been a hard-worn career — a run of injuries that never seems to end. With 37 games remaining this season, his five-year, $100 million contract with the Knicks is coming to an end, and his days in New York likely are, too. He couldn't say if he'd be back tonight to face Sacramento, and really couldn't put a date on a return with any certainty. Bergen Record

"With the ankle sprain, I tried to go back out and play through it," he said. "I was struggling the entire time. I was trying, trying. But I couldn't be myself out there. [In the final minutes] I couldn't do much. My ankle was throbbing. I felt like it was getting tighter and stiffer. At that point, I knew I couldn't be beneficial out there. "I'm sure it's going to be a little time for me to get over this ankle sprain and my wrist sprain. But we'll see. I'll bombard it with rehab the next few days, recover, and see how it feels." Bergen Record

But McHale didn't seem so sure the 36-year-old Bryant would be able to rebound from another potential season-ending injury, this time a torn rotator cuff in Bryant's right shoulder suffered last week in a loss at New Orleans. "Eventually, this catches up to you, man," McHale said Sunday before the Rockets beat the Lakers 99-87 at Staples Center. "Kobe's a great player, but I've seen other great players. When your time's up, your time's up, man. It's too bad, but it happens to everybody. "I wish him all the best. I've always admired him. I think he's a hell of a competitor, but everything comes to an end. In my case, my body just said, 'You weren't playing anymore,' and I said, 'OK.' " ESPN.com

Hornets forward Marvin Williams has been diagnosed with a concussion and a broken nose. He sustained both injures in the second quarter of the team’s game Saturday vs. New York and did not return. Williams cannot return to practice or game action until he passes the NBA concussion protocol. NBA.com

Hornets center Bismack Biyombo has been diagnosed with a bone bruise in his right knee. Biyombo, who will not participate in impact activities, will be re-evaluated in approximately 10 days. Biyombo left the Hornets game vs. New York in the second quarter on Saturday night and did not return. In 38 games this season, Biyombo is averaging 4.6 points on .569 (62-109) shooting and 6.2 rebounds in 17.6 minutes per game. NBA.com

As brilliant an analyst as Jeff Van Gundy is, there's little question he has a pro-coach agenda. While criticism towards players and executives is common in his commentary during TV and radio broadcasts, you rarely ever hear him say anything negative about coaching staffs. This pattern has been clear when discussing the Bulls' management dealings with the team's last two head coaches - Vinny Del Negro and Tom Thibodeau. HoopsHype

The Utah Jazz and the Deseret News’ Newspapers in Education program are once again teaming up on a Classroom Connections publication to provide more than 400,000 local youth and families with valuable information from the Utah Anti-Bullying Coalition. The special section titled “Take a Stand Against Bullying” will be distributed to nearly 300 local schools and will be available online and within the Deseret News print edition on Tuesday, Jan. 27. NBA.com

The wait for the official story on the upcoming Kobe 10 will finally end this Saturday when Nike unveils this next signature shoe for Kobe Bryant. With the date rapidly approaching, Mr. Bryant has actually been seen in the shoes on the cover of the Chinese hoops mag XXL, pictured below. It's not likely that the magazine got an exclusive with Bryant for the issue, so don't be surprised if this same image pops up in the official Nike press release when the shoe is unveiled over the weekend. The colorway on-feet here is the Kobe 10 'Blue Lagoon,' which looks to be the first of pairs to arrive with its 2//7 release date. Sole Collector

It appears that Ford's rankings have now all reverted to their original draft day forms. We've reached out to Ford for an explanation. This post will be updated when, and if, we get one. SB Nation

THE WORST BOBBLEHEAD FIASCOS

These are the worst bobblehead fiascos in NBA history.

   
January 26, 2015 | 07:07 AM ET Update

The Dallas Mavericks are confident they are inching closer to the eventual signing of veteran center Jermaine O'Neal, according to team sources. Sources told ESPN.com that the Mavericks -- who continue to closely monitor the 36-year-old center's progress as O'Neal works out in preparation for a comeback -- hope to sign him by the All-Star break. ESPN.com

Sources say O'Neal has made it clear to interested teams that he doesn't intend to sign anywhere until he is closer to NBA game shape. After taking the first few months of the season to focus on family time and business trips, O'Neal has been working out intensely since the start of 2015 out of his home gym in Southlake, Texas, a suburb of Dallas. ESPN.com

Either way, Scott said he wasn't happy with Young's effort. "It looked to me that he didn't want to be here," Scott said. "At halftime, we showed stuff on the tape where he was guarding [Houston swingman Corey] Brewer in the corner. I asked [Young], 'What were you thinking on his play?' The answer he gave me, I couldn't figure it out. So I just felt with his body language that he didn't want to play tonight, so I chose not to play him." ESPN.com

The Lakers' reserve guard was then a no-show after the Lakers' 99-87 loss to Houston, leaving without speaking to reporters after going scoreless for the first time for the Lakers in eight minutes of playing time -- his fewest as a Laker. ESPN.com

Lin didn't play in the Lakers' 99-85 loss at San Antonio on Friday, missing a game for the first time in his first season. He returned to coach Byron Scott's rotation in Sunday's game against Houston, playing as a reserve in the first quarter. ''I'm going to show up and do my best to play and work hard and stuff, but it definitely hurts,'' Lin said before Sunday's game in his first public comments since being a healthy scratch. ''I'm human. I've got emotions, too. ... It's discouraging sometimes. It's disappointing sometimes. All of those emotions, of course. I don't think anybody would feel great after a DNP, anybody. It doesn't matter who you are.'' NBA.com

Ramona Shelburne: Kobe is the type to exhaust all options before a decision and I'm told that's what he's doing now. So far, everyone has recommended surgery Twitter @ramonashelburne

Stoudemire sprained his ankle and wrist in the game. He finished 0-for-5 with one point in 12 minutes and didn't sound too confident about being able to play Monday night against the Kings. "I'm sure it's going to be a little time for me to get over this ankle sprain and my wrist sprain," Stoudemire said. "But we'll see. I'll bombard it with rehab the next few days, recover and see how it feels." Newsday

As far as I know, the only media member to suggest the hot seat theory in writing was Chris Sheridan of Sheridanhoops.com, a national NBA site. Van Gundy seems to believe Bulls management promoted this idea behind the scenes, but let's let JVG speak for himself. “He has done such a good job here," Van Gundy said during the broadcast. "First two years had the best record in the league. Unfortunately, these last three playoffs have been disrupted by injury. But he came to the Bulls at a time where mediocrity reigned. They had struggled for a long time, they were basically a .500 team. Along with the emergence of some players, he's taken it to elite status. “I think right now, it's almost criminal … what he's having to endure with some of the fringe media – attacking his job status, attacking his personality. This isn't new to Chicago Bulls basketball, all the way back to Phil Jackson. The team has publicly supported their coach while privately, often times, undermining that same person. You saw it with Vinny Del Negro, Scott Skiles. Think about it, they ran out Phil Jackson out after winning all those championships. “I think it's wrong. It's wrong for the town, wrong for the team and it certainly has not been fair to Tom Thibodeau." Arlington Heights Daily Herald

Van Gundy went on to spread his criticism to the Chicago media. “Listen, I read every Chicago story and there is no doubt that the Bulls organization has the media, with a few exceptions, in their hip pocket," he said. "And for whatever reason, they have taken their sights on Thibodeau when all he's done is deliver greatness here in his five years." Arlington Heights Daily Herald

Asked if he feels he has management's support, Thibodeau said: "I'm fine. I don't get wrapped up in that stuff. That's (Van Gundy's) opinion. He's paid to give opinions. He has to do his job. I try to do my job. I'm just trying to work here. ... My job is to coach the team. That's what I worry about. (Van Gundy) doesn't speak for me. I don't speak for him." Chicago Tribune

Look, Thibodeau is a workaholic when it comes to preparation and effort and he expects his players to do the same -- wait, no, he believes in that as the surest way to success. Every player in uniform is at his disposal, which might make some linger a little longer now in street clothes when they've been hurting. Management's imposed limits on minutes, for Derrick Rose and Noah in particular, has led to the coach straining some at the leash. He and his bosses have had frictions in the past, though GM Gar Forman dismissed this week's drama as any sort of story. NBA.com

Besides, the idea that, merely halfway through a season begun with championship hopes, the locker room would be on the verge of mutiny vs. Thibodeau -- who'd be snatched up in 48 hours to steer some other contenders' defense toward the Finals, if he wanted that -- was silly. At best, if the "insiders say" stuff were true, it would reveal an immaturity and lack of seriousness within the ranks. NBA.com

"This don't have anything to do with Thibs at all," Rose said. " The way we've been playing don't have anything to do with Thibs. He's preparing us right. Everything he's doing, everything he did, everything possible to prepare us as a coach. It's up to the players to give the effort." NBA.com

After reviewing the post on Reddit today, we have found that changes were made manually to Chad Ford’s NBA Draft prospects rankings. We have not been able to determine who made the changes, or when. We have talked to Chad Ford, who strongly denies any involvement, and based on his past work and professionalism, we believe him. Our review will continue but it is unclear at this time if we will be able to ascertain who was responsible. ESPN.com

LIKE US ON FACEBOOK

You read HoopsHype on Twitter, but we want you to follow us on Facebook too. Like us to get the latest rumors, articles, videos and more on your Facebook wall

 

Did you miss Sunday's NBA rumors? check them out in the Rumors Archive.
Any rumor missing? E-mail us at   hoopshype@hoopshype.com.