HoopsHype Great Britain rumors

October 9, 2013 Updates

Manchester United teenage sensation Adnan Januzaj and his team-mates David de Gea and Rio Ferdinand were among the star-studded cast who spent a night of the international break watching some of the finest basketball players on the planet in Manchester. Januzaj, who rejected a call-up from the Belgium national team earlier this week, was in the crowd as the Oklahoma City Thunder beat the Philadelphia 76ers at the Phones 4 U Arena 103-99. Daily Mail

September 15, 2013 Updates
September 5, 2013 Updates

He will hope for more happy occasions in Slovenia before he returns to the United States, packs up his belongings, and moves his wife and young son to New York. Back to the NBA. Back to being one voice among several on the Nets' bench. One day, perhaps, he will get to do what he is doing here, and be the first among equals, as a head coach in his own right in the NBA. "If you're asking me would I like to do it, the answer is yes," Prunty says. "But I'll take care of the things that will prepare me to be in that position. Which is this." ESPN.com

His passport now has stamps from Finland, Greece, Spain and Slovenia, places he might never have otherwise passed through. Regretfully, too often he admits, the travel schedule has closely resembled that of the NBA: bus to hotel, hotel to arena, arena to airport, flight to next destination -- with little chance to catch a breath in between. "The other day, someone asked me, 'What's Europe like?' I said, 'There are some incredible hotels and gyms and arenas,'" he says. "You don't get a whole lot of time to spend out there, but when you can, you take those walks. You go down the street, you find a cobblestoned path somewhere. Or you find a little corner that has a new nuance, something you've not seen before. That hour can rejuvenate you. And all the people I've talked to told me not only would I enjoy the experience, but I'd get to help other people too, and that's certainly been true." ESPN.com

July 28, 2013 Updates

Great Britain's men's basketball team will have to cope without both of their big NBA stars as they bid to make the most of their funding reprieve at EuroBasket 2013 in Slovenia in September. Portland Trailblazers' Joel Freeland has cited NBA commitments as his reason for withdrawing from the squad, which was already without Luol Deng due to a bout of ill health. The GB men's basketball programme won its appeal against a funding cut in March and was awarded £7million over three years by UK Sport - provided it fulfils the funding body's strict performance criteria. Freeland said: "It is a tough decision for me because I have been with GB for everything up to this moment. "I remain fully committed and very motivated to continue to be a part of the national team and continue to help build the programme in an effort to take it as far as we possibly can." London Evening Standard

July 3, 2013 Updates

A British basketball star who plays in the NBA has intervened to stop his former coach being evicted from his Brixton home. Luol Deng, 28, who Barack Obama has called “an inspiration”, stepped in after hearing Jimmy Rogers, 70, was at risk of losing the home he has lived in for more than 30 years. Mr Rogers discovered Deng, who is 6ft 9in tall, as a teenager. He went on to represent Great Britain and plays for the Chicago Bulls. The star, right, is one of the highest earning British sportsmen, with a salary of 13 million dollars. London Evening Standard

The council claimed that it needed to sell Mr Rogers’s house to help recoup £450 million of lost Government funding. In a letter, Deng, who came to the UK when he was seven after fleeing the Sudanese civil war, said he “simply could not let this pass by without trying to help”. He said: “Jimmy is Brixton. He has done so much for the community helping thousands of kids get off the streets and do something constructive with their lives. “He is known as someone who gives back, who helps. For the community not to give back to him for the only time he needs something is just wrong.” London Evening Standard

June 13, 2013 Updates

Great Britain have appointed long-time NBA assistant Joe Prunty as their new national team boss. The American takes over from Chris Finch, who ended several years at the helm after the Brits' Olympic campaign. Prunty will lead the national side at the EuroBasket in Slovenia in September. The team has taken giant strides in recent summers, winning promotion from Division B and climbing to No. 23 in the FIBA Ranking Men. Britain have qualified for the past two EuroBaskets. FIBA.com

June 10, 2013 Updates

New Great Britain coach Joe Prunty has begun to contact prospective recruits for his first squad this summer, despite delays in finalising his bench staff for EuroBasket. However MVP can reveal that Charlotte Bobcats pair Ben Gordon and Byron Mullens are among those on Prunty’s long-list for Slovenia. The surprise move – which is likely to prove unpopular with the existing squad – comes a year after both declined selection for the Olympic Games despite a lengthy courtship from British Basketball officials. MVP 24/7

March 30, 2013 Updates

Cavaliers assistant coach Joe Prunty is expected to coach the Great Britain senior men's national team in the EuroBasket competition this summer, The Plain Dealer has confirmed. The appointment was first reported by the website mvp247.com. Prunty declined to comment on his appointment before Friday's game against Philadelphia, but an NBA source confirmed it. Cleveland Plain Dealer

March 29, 2013 Updates

Great Britain’s men are set to find out their new coach next week, with Cleveland Cavaliers assistant Joe Prunty to be named in charge, according to sources in the NBA. MVP has learnt that final contractual arrangements are likely to be signed off following Easter Weekend to name a successor to Chris Finch, following an extensive recruitment process arranged, somewhat controversially, by an external agency. MVP 24/7

News of Prunty’s impending appointment was met with shock by a number of current internationals who had expected someone with prior working knowledge of international basketball to take charge. “I cant believe we are considering an NBA guy with no European experience,” said one member of the 2012 Olympic team, speaking to MVP on condition of anonymity. “I was hoping for a Euro coach that would teach the guys not just compete. That really is disappointing. I thought for sure they would want a fresh start and create a more European-style team.” MVP 24/7

March 6, 2013 Updates

The British Basketball Association has established an office in Manhattan and plans to start a high-level professional league in the United Kingdom with play beginning in November 2014. The league wants to have eight teams in major UK cities in its first season, and the BBA has "adapted a single entity business model similar to Major League Soccer … which will offer Investors and Franchise Partners a scalable platform to participate in the growth of the sport through equity ownership. This formula allows the BBA to implement stringent financial and operational controls necessary, while providing local ownership groups access to proven basketball, sports marketing and finance professionals," according a new release. USA Today Sports

January 28, 2013 Updates

Britain's basketball superstar Luol Deng has today delivered a hard-hitting letter to the Prime Minister over the slashed funding that is crippling the sport. The Chicago Bulls star has weighed in on the debate after UK Sport's funding was cut in the aftermath of the Olympics. In a letter sent to 10 Downing Street, Deng wrote: 'We all heard about the "legacy" that London 2012 was going to bring to sport in the UK and I refuse to sit back and let that legacy be completely demolished for basketball. 'I, along with other people involved in the game, have put too much in and care too greatly to let this happen. 'The sport of basketball is a pathway, a pathway that teaches so many valuable lessons on and off the court, how are we supposed to motivate these kids to carry along their journey when there’s now nothing at the end? No Team GB, no Olympic dream, no goal.' Daily Mail

January 21, 2013 Updates

Euroleague Basketball and the NBA will enhance their ongoing collaboration by developing several marketing and promotional activities in Europe to increase the awareness of basketball. This was one of the main conclusions reached in a meeting on Wednesday in London between executives of both leagues, headed by NBA Deputy Commissioner Adam Silver, the designated successor to current NBA commissioner David Stern, and Jordi Bertomeu, the president and CEO of Euroleague basketball. Euroleague.net

January 16, 2013 Updates

The recent success of the national team in Great Britain, the Olympic basketball spectacle in August, the notion England will play host to the EuroLeague Final Four in May and the increased participation in the sport are signs there may one day be an NBA team wearing London on its chest. Former Knicks general manager Ed Tapscott is in the process of forming a second pro league here beginning in 2015, trying to make it more than a niche sport. “Why not?’’ Moreland said of a London NBA team. “How many years? I don’t know. But it’s still David Stern’s decision.’’ New York Post

Moreland points to NBA games now appearing on TV network Sky Sport and the ESPN feed Londoners get on satellite. According to Moreland, a study shows basketball is the second- highest participation sport among 11- to 15-year-old boys after soccer. “There’s just an increasing amount of NBA product new in our media,’’ Moreland said. New York Post

December 5, 2012 Updates

The NBA will finally return to British TV screens this week after the league signed a deal with ESPN until the end of the current season. The coverage begins on Thursday night with New York Knicks versus Miami Heat and will include three live games per week, NBA All Star Game, First and Second Round NBA Playoff coverage, Western Conference Finals, and NBA Finals. MVP 24/7

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