Local ratings for 27 of the NBA’s 30 teams (with the Utah Jazz, Memphis Grizzlies, and Toronto Raptors not included) are in at the league’s All-Star Break, and the news is not very good for the Association. According to the ratings data compiled by the Sports Business Journal, those 27 teams are down 13% on their local RSNs, with 14 of the 27 experiencing declines in viewership. This news follows a similar trend to the national landscape, where ratings have dropped by 12%, from 10% on ESPN to to 13% on TNT and 16% on ABC.
August 15, 2022 | 10:31 am EDT Update
Clutch Points: “Nothing has happened. The dynamic around Kevin Durant hasn’t changed at all… Durant clearly does not have leverage with the Brooklyn Nets… We may be here at the end of August, we may be here in mid-September.” — @Brian Windhorst on KD trade talks pic.twitter.com/TImHYG9XPx
Keith Smith: Luke Kornet’s contract becomes guaranteed for $300K if he’s not waived by the Boston Celtics today. That’s up from the $100K Kornet is already guaranteed. Kornet’s deal then becomes half-guaranteed at just over $1M on opening night. Fully guaranteed on league-wide date of Jan 10.
Giannis Antetokounmpo landed in the first senior national team training camp after his NBA rookie year when he was 19 in 2014. His teammates and head coach Fotis Katsikaris were slightly confused because of Giannis’ seriousness. The Milwaukee Bucks forward didn’t even smile in the first days. As recalled in Mirin Fader’s book “Giannis: The Improbable Rise of an NBA MVP,” one Greek NT veteran took Giannis’ seriousness for rudeness and was ready to fight him.
“Tell this kid to change his attitude because I’m going to punch his face,” the player approached Katsikaris and told to head coach. Some veterans thought that Giannis was cocky just because he was coming off the NBA. “He was a high draft pick, but we didn’t know how his game would fit. We didn’t know if he could help up,” Calathes was quoted in “Giannis: The Improbable Rise of an NBA MVP.”
The first time Giannis met Katsikaris, Giannis asked if his older brother Thanasis could join the team. The coach was surprised that the player who had just earned a roster spot asked not about his role but a family member. Katsikaris diplomatically explained it wasn’t possible at that point. “Where do you see me? What can I do to improve?” Giannis asked again. He looked Katsikaris in the eye. Katsikaris later admitted he hadn’t seen that kind of focus in a young player before. “He absolutely wasn’t ready to play, but he was a real diamond,” Katsikaris recalled. “Greece is a small country, and of course, we have a great culture in basketball. But we never had a player like him. With his characteristics, with his raw talent. We needed to work with him.”
Clutch Points: Russell Westbrook photobombing his wife’s photoshoot 😂 (via @ninawestbrook/ IG) pic.twitter.com/i3CSMcMNMg
August 15, 2022 | 2:10 am EDT Update
Fox 32 Chicago Sports: Giannis on playing for the #Bulls someday tonight on The Sports Zone on Fox 32 Chicago. @fox32news @foxkickoff @LouCanellis @CassieCarlsonTV @Giannis_An34
“I think anyone asked that question who plays basketball, if he said no, he’d be a liar. It’s a team that won multiple championships, a team with one of the greatest players, if not the greatest player to ever play this game. It’s a no-brainer, everybody would love to play for Chicago. Down the line, you never know. You never know how life brings it. Maybe I play for Chicago,” Antetokounmpo said. “But right now, I’m committed to Milwaukee.”