HoopsHype Schedule rumors

January 26, 2015 Updates
January 17, 2015 Updates

Alexander called for changes as extreme as requiring teams to win a certain number of games to be eligible for the top three picks of the draft to avoid systematic tanking to the more subtle change of extending the season to spread out the 82 games and reduce the number of back-to-backs. “I think the league has too many games that are considered exhibition games where people don’t show up with their teams and also, people trying to lose so badly the game isn’t a real game,” Alexander said. “It hurts me every time I see it because it damages the league. There should be some disincentive to lose. Right now, we have an incentive to lose. I think it should be switched. “My solution is a team has to win a certain number of games in a year in order to get in the top three picks. Pick a number so you have to field a competitive team. I think it’s horrible. It ticks me off that people are trying to win by losing.” Houston Chronicle

January 15, 2015 Updates
January 8, 2015 Updates

It is too late for TNT to do anything about Thursday night's Rockets-Knicks game, but ESPN took action earlier in the day to reduce the number of Knicks games on its upcoming schedule. The network ditched three upcoming appearances for the currently 5-33 Knicks - against the Thunder Jan. 28, Nets Feb. 6 and Clippers March 25. Newsday

December 28, 2014 Updates

Amar'e Stoudemire would like to see the NBA scale back its schedule in light of so many players taking games off to rest. "I'm a firm believer that 82 games and the preseason and playoffs is a lot for us as basketball players," said Stoudemire, who missed Saturday night's 135-129 overtime loss to the Kings with right knee soreness. "Basketball requires a lot of athletic ability. There's a lot of running, jumping, pounding, cutting, quickness. There's a lot of training that goes on even when the season's over that accumulates over time. Add to that for 15 years straight or however many years guys are playing and it's hard to keep up. Newsday

December 21, 2014 Updates
December 13, 2014 Updates

ESPN hyped up the games with this perfectly executed commercial featuring Santa Claus poking fun at LeBron. “This is very tough… This Christmas I’m going to be taking my talents to the South Pole.” For The Win

December 11, 2014 Updates

The NBA over the last two weeks has informally surveyed team higher-ups about the idea of cutting the preseason schedule by as much as half, according to several sources around the league. The goal is to start the regular season earlier and stretch the full 82-game schedule over about 10 additional days, sources say. That would allow the league to slice off a couple of back-to-backs from each team’s schedule, and in the process limit some of the rest imbalance that is inevitable in juggling hundreds of games across 29 arenas. Grantland

December 2, 2014 Updates

Several teams have informally pitched fixes. In an email exchange last week with Grantland, Mark Cuban conjured up a temporary plan that would shift Chicago, Detroit, Indiana, and Milwaukee to the West, with the three Texas teams and New Orleans moving to the East. Robert Sarver, the Suns owner, says he brought up the idea of abolishing conferences for at least the purposes of playoff seeding at the league’s board of governors meeting in October. The wound of having the 48-win Suns miss the playoffs last season is still fresh, but Sarver vows to keep poking at the issue regardless of his team’s fate going forward. “It needs to be looked at,” Sarver tells Grantland. “I’m getting closer to the point where I just think there needs to be a change. It is on the league’s radar screen now.” Grantland

Representatives from at least one other Western Conference team — the Thunder — have informally suggested a top-16 playoff structure over the last six months, according to several sources. Some pitches have included the wrinkle of re-seeding the playoffs after each round, league sources say. League higher-ups understand the outcry. “We are studying the issue closely,” says Adam Silver, the NBA’s commissioner. Grantland

It’s convenient for Western Conference owners to propose some form of realignment now. The top teams would all but guarantee themselves at least two home playoff games, which can rake in $2 million apiece in gate receipts — and much more in some markets. But Cuban’s plan would only be temporary, subject to revision as the league’s balance of power shifts, he says. “A shakeup will create interest,” Cuban says. “And after five years, you can learn and adjust from there.” The imbalance is so severe right now that even an imperfect stopgap measure would be better than granting the East eight playoff teams just because that is what tradition says the NBA must do. Plucking the 16 best teams by overall record, even with the league’s current imbalanced schedule, would do a better job of rewarding teams that most deserve playoff shine. Grantland

That’s obviously not happening anytime soon. Gate receipts are soaring in some markets, and neither players nor owners are eager to give those up. The Knicks approached a record $145 million in net gate receipts last season, nearly $3.5 million per game, and the Lakers pushed $90 million, per several league sources. A bunch of smaller-market teams don’t even sniff $1 million in gate per home game, but that scarcity makes every game feel precious. The NBA’s mammoth new national TV deal might withstand a schedule slice, since the league could earmark the same number of games for its broadcast partners. But local TV deals are based on teams filling 82 prime-time slots, and several teams are set to negotiate fat new local deals over the next couple of years. Grantland

November 15, 2014 Updates

The Nets haven't seen this many crowns since ... well, never. They're the Nets after all. Prince William and Princess Kate will swing by the Dec. 8 game against the Cleveland Cavaliers at Barclays Center in Brooklyn while they're in town. The British royals will see the NBA's version of royalty: King James. The couple, who will be in the United States from Dec. 7-9, plan to attend the game, according to a news release issued by the British government. It will mark the first visit to New York for the couple, who will visit the Sept. 11 memorial. Newark Star-Ledger

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