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January 27, 2015 Updates

No new taxes, no hole in the state budget, and no loss of Wisconsin's professional basketball team -- or the revenue they provide. Those were the big talking points for Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker on Tuesday morning, as Walker outlined a plan to use the growth in NBA player tax revenues to finance $220 million in bonding for a new multi-purpose arena in downtown Milwaukee. In a short prepared presentation at the Metropolitan Milwaukee Association of Commerce, Walker noted that NBA players currently pay $6.52 million annually in state income taxes, and that the projected growth in player salaries (and thus tax collections) could finance the full $220 million in revenue bonds included in his new state budget. Central to that projected growth is the NBA's new nine-year, $24 billion TV pact starting in 2016, a deal that roughly triples the current $900 million annual TV deal split among franchises. Brew Hoop

The Milwaukee Bucks, Charlotte Hornets and Philadelphia 76ers are exploring the call-up candidacy of Gary Talton, the NBA Development League’s assists leader, league sources told RealGM. Behind 13 games of 10 or more assists, Talton has averaged 13.2 points, 10.2 assists and 40.6 percent three-point shooting this season. He has split the year with the Rio Grande Valley Vipers and the Fort Wayne Mad Ants, his current team. RealGM

Gov. Scott Walker is expected to announce Tuesday morning that he plans to put into the state budget a financing plan that includes bonding to help build a multipurpose arena in downtown Milwaukee. A source familiar with Walker's plan said the governor's plan relies on the diversion of income taxes paid by visiting National Basketball Association athletes as well as Milwaukee Bucks players to pay the debt service on the bonding. The plan also could include diverting sales taxes paid for some goods and services at the new arena. Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel

A new arena is expected to cost between $400 million and $500 million. With at least $250 million up front from the Bucks, that means general fund-backed bonding of $150 million or more would be needed unless more private financing is found. Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel

“The NBA owners know it’s a lot more than the TV contract that brought the values up,” an NBA team source tells Breitbart Sports, “It’s the sports betting.” The source’s comment follows a Forbes report recapping fiscal year 2014. According to the report, the NBA underwent a value surge unmatched by any other professional sport. The Milwaukee Bucks, peculiarly purchased in part by Marc Lasry in April of 2014 for an estimated six times more than their annual revenue, sit at the bottom of the Forbes 30-team list. Breitbart News Network

Near the top of Forbes’s rankings are former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer’s Los Angeles Clippers. Before purchasing the Donald Sterling-defamed Clippers, he ran the computer software empire during the peak of Microsoft’s development of touch-screen interfaces. Conveniently, the league source describes a marriage between Ballmer’s former business and Lasry’s alleged dirty hobby as the key to to an endless revenue stream that NBA owners anxiously seek to tap into. “In addition to all of the regular bets we already have, you’ll be able to sit at an NBA game or on your couch and bet on jump shots by pressing a button on the iPad or your cellphone or any of the gadgets,” explained the league source. “You’ll do this as much as you want throughout the game.” Breitbart News Network

January 25, 2015 Updates

After two seasons of replacement-level production in Detroit, Knight started his time in Milwaukee with a hamstring injury 105 seconds into his Bucks career. But he overcame the injury-marred start and finished his first Bucks season with 4.0 wins above replacement (WARP) to rank 94th in the league. This year, Knight has already compiled 5.1 WARP, 26th in the NBA. He's been the Bucks' best overall player and seems to enjoy playing for Kidd on one of the league's most improved teams. "[Kidd] has helped me in everything, thinking the game, being smarter with decision-making," Knight said. "Overall he just has a great feel for the game and he transfers that to us, allows us to think about the game the same way he still does." ESPN.com

“If you don’t win, that’s when you go in a dark place,” he said. “I’m a great competitor, and I want to win. That’s who I am. And if I’m not winning, I’m a different type of person. That’s one thing that Golden State couldn’t understand. It was like they were accepting losing. And they wanted me to accept and embrace losing. I couldn’t do that. “If you’re mad at your best player because he’s tired of losing, then it should be a question about your character and what you’re trying to do.” Dallas Morning News

January 24, 2015 Updates

Sanders earlier had been out due to personal reasons and has not played in a game for Milwaukee since Dec. 23. "I think the most important thing is to take life as the priority," Baker said. "Take that first. Everything falls into place when you put life as the priority. "For me, I was still trying to put basketball as the priority when life was the priority. My message would be to put life first." Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel

Baker said he definitely would have had a longer NBA career if he had been able to conquer some of his personal demons. "But I'm at a point in my life where I think everything works for the good," Baker said. "Like I told the young men (Friday), everything I went through led me to this place to come back and help them. So it was all worth it if I can help save them or keep them from going down the roads I went." Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel

Knight is averaging a team-leading 18.2 points, 5.1 assists and 4.2 rebounds while starting all 42 games. On Thursday night's all-star special on TNT, Charles Barkley had Knight on his list of all-star reserves. "I can't sit here and tell you I don't want to make it," Knight said of the NBA All-Star Game, scheduled for Feb. 15 in New York. "It's something I would love to be a part of. "It would mean a lot for me to be a part of that (the all-star weekend) and definitely to be a part of that in the city of Milwaukee, a city that gave me a chance to play my game. It would be really special for me." Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel

 

THE TOP 50 PLAYERS IN BUCKS HISTORY

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is No. 1 in a list filled with old-school players at the top.

   

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