HoopsHype Brazil rumors

October 12, 2013 Updates
October 10, 2013 Updates

Noah: "To be able to share moments like this can only be good. It's special to represent the Bulls in the first-ever NBA game in Brazil, which is a special place." Deng: "There are a lot of NBA fans here and we're happy for them to get an opportunity to watch us live. It's an honor to be a part of this." Derrick Rose: "I'm running on fumes right now, but it's still an honor being here." And for anyone worrying about Thibodeau going soft in the spirit of ambassadorship, think again. "A gym is a gym," Rose said. "You can put us anywhere and Thibs is going to have us working." Chicago Tribune

October 9, 2013 Updates
September 30, 2013 Updates
September 26, 2013 Updates

Dennis Rodman says North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has asked him to train his players to compete in the 2016 Olympics. Days after returning from his second trip to visit Kim Jong Un — in which he said he became the first foreigner to hold the leader’s newborn daughter — Rodman announced plans Monday to stage two exhibition games in North Korea in January. Chicago Sun-Times

And Rodman, who joked that he hadn’t drawn such a crowd in New York since he wore a wedding dress to a book signing, was adamant that this venture was serious — “groundbreaking,” in Rodman’s words. “People think this is a gimmick. I would love to make this a gimmick ... but it’s not about the money,” he said. Chicago Sun-Times

September 22, 2013 Updates
September 8, 2013 Updates

He has a personality that splashes everywhere and a big laugh to match. Not quite a Magic Johnson shakes-the-walls laugh, but not far off either. Except that Oscar Schmidt is being serious now. He said he would have been one of the 10 best players in the NBA if the basketball world had been different in the 1970s and ‘80s, and he came to the United States. And not one of the 10 best in the league. One of the 10 best ever, “Yes,” Schmidt said. “Anytime. It was easier, because in the NBA at that time it was one-on-one, always. One-on-one, I’m free. If it comes to two players guarding me, maybe.” Insert big laugh. “I would be one of the best 10 ever.” NBA.com

Signing with the NBA at that time would have meant being ineligible for the national team, and Schmidt was not willing to make that tradeoff. The Nets pursued him three years in a row, he said, but no way. After the rules were changed to allow the Dream Team to play in the 1992 Olympics, sure, except that Schmidt was 34 by the time of the historic Barcelona Games. It would be different under the current rules. “Give me two months of practice, I kill everybody else,” he said Saturday at the Hall of Fame, the day before the induction ceremony. Another big laugh. “There was not a price [the Nets could have offered]. There was national team. That’s it. The national team doesn’t have a price. It’s proud. It’s what you live for. And today, people don’t like to play for the national team. That’s very sad for me.” NBA.com

Schmidt was asked what he would have averaged in the NBA and said, “One point a minute. Twenty minutes, 20 points. Forty minutes, maybe 60.” C’mon. Get serious. “Did you see me play?” Schmidt fired back. But a point a minute? “One point a minute at least,” he said. “Do you know how many hours I practiced a day.” Eight, he answered. NBA.com

August 31, 2013 Updates

Puerto Rico drew Brazil for their first game of the tournament, making it a matchup of the top two teams in the tournament and a likely preview of the eventual championship game. The game lived up to its billing, too, considering the score was 62-61 with 2:28 left in the game before Renaldo Balkman rattled off five straight points to help his country score an eventual 72-65 victory. Balkman, the Knicks’ first-round pick in 2006, scored 24 points, grabbed eight rebounds and blocked four shots while playing 37 of the game’s 40 minutes — and he didn’t even choke a teammate in the process. Former Boston University standout John Holland added 15 points and nine rebounds while Minnesota Timberwolves dynamo J.J. Barea struggled to 12 points on 11 shot attempts, committing four turnovers in the process. Other notables on the Puerto Rican squad include Carlos Arroyo (7 points, 2-of-9 shooting), Ricky Sanchez (four points, four rebounds and four fouls) and former USC star — and current 36-year-old chucker — Larry Ayuso (two points, four fouls, five shots). The only NBA player on the Brazil roster is Utah Jazz draft pick Raul Neto because Nene, Tiago Splitter, Leandro Barbosa and Anderson Varejao all decided to sit this tournament out. NBCSports.com

July 15, 2013 Updates
July 12, 2013 Updates

Anderson Varejao, power forward for the Cleveland Cavaliers, asked to be excluded from the Brazilian national team that will play the FIBA Americas Championship in Venezuela. Varejao argued that he is still recovering from a thigh injury in his right leg, which caused two clots that caused a pulmonary embolism. The player is undergoing physical therapy, muscle strengthening and physical conditioning to recover for the NBA season. FIBA Americas

July 9, 2013 Updates
July 8, 2013 Updates

The pivot Nene Hilario officiated his request for waiver of the Brazilian National Team that will compete in the FIBA Americas Championship in Caracas, Venezuela, from August 30 to September 11. According to the report of the orthopedic surgeon and chief medical officer of the Washington Wizards, Dr. Marc Connell, the player is recovering from plantar fasciitis in his left foot and problems in his right knee that prevent him from returning to train before the end September. FIBA Americas Tournament

Brazil will have plenty of talent and experience when they compete at the FIBA Americas Championship this summer in Caracas. For the first time in a very long time, however, veteran center Tiago Splitter will not be with the team. The San Antonio Spurs star, who made his Olympic debut last summer and helped the national side reach the Quarter-Finals, has sent a letter to Brazil Basketball Confederation President Carlos Nunes and Secretary General Edio Jose Alves explaining the need to withdraw from this year's group. FIBA Americas

Splitter cites a "physical recovery program" he has to undertake after a grueling campaign that ended last month with a Game 7 defeat to the Miami Heat in the NBA Finals. The 2.11m pivot, who is expected to sign a new four-year deal worth $36million with the Spurs, says he also must concentrate on contract negotiations. Splitter finished his letter by saying: "I make myself available for future call-ups." FIBA Americas

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