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Ronnie: What do you see Maccabi doing this summer to revamp the roster? Will they go hard after Mekel? Also is Bender going to play on the senior team this year? David Pick: Maccabi are going hard after Gal Mekel – as are Hapoel Jerusalem. Not many players are safe in terms of moving forward with Maccabi next season. MarQuez Haynes, Nate Linhart, Sofo Schotsanitis are all gone. Joe Alexander is questionable, depending on whether he is awarded Israeli credentials. Alex Tyus is looking for his max deal in Europe, which is a well-deserved $1 million. Jeremy Pargo is 50-50, could go either way, will come down to if Maccabi win or lose championship. Assistant Pini Gershon is out.
via Basketball Insiders
Israeli-American Ori Allon, who heads the Hapoel ownership group, said he has had discussions with Stoudemire about playing for Hapoel Jerusalem. Allon has a goal of making Hapoel into the same recognizable brand as Maccabi Tel Aviv and believes Stoudemire’s addition — as owner or player — has put the team on that path. “We’ve discussed it in the past,’’ Allon said. “It would be tremendous and unbelievable but it’s still early. I think it’s a real possibility, but he played very well this season so it’s up to him.’’
via New York Post
“We’ll see,’’ Stoudemire told The Post. “You can’t rule anything out. The future is unknown and so if I have an opportunity to [play in Israel] and am still in great health, it would be great. I have one more year left on my deal and we’ll go from there.’’ Stoudemire claims he has Jewish roots on his mother’s side and has become observant regarding Jewish holidays, including Passover, which began Monday night. Stoudemire said he will observe by not eating bread.
via New York Post
Stoudemire is part of a four-man ownership group, including superagent Arn Tellem, that purchased 60 percent of Hapoel Jerusalem last summer and turned the franchise into the top team in the Israeli league at 20-7. Stoudemire’s late surge, during which he played near his All-Star level the season’s final month, could prompt him to seek another NBA contract after 2014-15 when his $100 million pact expires. But he’s also mulling Israel to boost its profile.
via New York Post
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The New York Knicks’ star forward Amar’e Stoudemire, who’s been reconnecting with his Jewish roots over the past few years, says he’s joining a group that’s likely to purchase the troubled Hapoel Jerusalem basketball team. “Excited to join the partnership that is giving back to the city of Jerusalem by offering the Hapoel basketball team a fresh start,” Stoudemire (@Amareisreal), 30, tweeted on Friday morning.
via Times of Israel
After the shocking report earlier today regarding the ‘Black Mamba’ signing in Italy becoming the unofficial ‘Pasta/Pizza Mamba’, the Memphis Grizzlies Venezuelan point guard Greivis Vasquez officially decided not to sign with Israeli organization Hapoel Jerusalem and will remain in Venezuela, this, after both sides agreed on terms of a deal where Vasquez would earn a monthly salary of $28,000. Eurobasket understood that the reason as to why Vasquez decided to stay in VZ is because of a decisive meeting with President Hugo Chvez, who offered the local mega-star a ‘huge 2-month marketing deal with the government which includes a lot of money,’ source very close to the situation revealed.
via Eurobasket.com
Grizzlies backup point guard Greivis Vasquez is not headed to Israel. Herb Rudoy, the agent for Vasquez, just told me that he has not negotiated an overseas deal for his client. Vasquez isn’t about to sign a contract to play with Israeli club Hapoel Jerusalem sometime this week. “We’ve had no discussions with anybody yet. Someone totally made that up,” Rudoy said. “I don’t know what we’re going to do. We’ll talk later in the week. But Greivis is planning to spend another week in Venezuela.”
via Memphis Commercial Appeal