NBA Rumor: Big3 Signings

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Johnson, aka Iso Joe, has been tearing up the BIG3 this summer. The seven-time NBA All-Star has migrated his game to three-on-three basketball, and it’s paying big dividends. Johnson leads the league—filled with former NBA pros—in points and assists, while also coming up second in rebounds (and first in four pointers!) But amidst his success, Johnson still isn’t sure he’s found his second career. “I’m not sure about the longevity in it for me,” Johnson told The Crossover when asked about his future in the BIG3. “I got two kids. I have a son that’s 12 and a daughter that’s five. The summer is obviously our down time for us to spend a lot of time together. I’m not sure—I can’t promise you I’ll definitely be back next season or the year after that. I don’t really know.”

Ice Cube’s BIG3 league is missing out on a major ex-NBA talent who says the league needs to give him a look ASAP … like YESTERDAY, because he’s SURE he has enough game left to compete. The man is Isaiah Rider … who averaged 16.7 ppg over 9 NBA seasons — a serious player — and told us he feels like he’s not getting a fair shake at continuing his hoops legacy in the BIG3. “I been in the draft the last three years … They know I’m available, it’s a buddy league. One of my buddies need to pick me up and stop playing.”

A day after Ice Cube’s Big 3 business partner temporarily lit the world on fire with a comment on a conference call about Kobe Bryant coming to the Big 3 (which was later clarified to not be a thing that is happening), the Big 3 founder appeared on Outside the Lines where he confirmed one thing. He has not given up on Kobe. “To me he’s the biggest name out there for us to get and he’s going to have to get a restraining order on me to leave him alone about this,” Ice Cube said.

So how does one get Kobe Bryant to join your basketball league? “I think we just keep doing what we doing putting on great basketball and I think we have a lot of retired players looking at our league and they want a piece of this,” Ice Cube said. “And we’ve got a lot of players that are at the end of their career that are looking at our league. If you got the itch, we got the scratch. We just keep putting on a great product and if he wants to play, he’ll come play.”

Here’s what you need to know about the 19 players taken: Round One: No. 1, Ball Hogs, Andre Owens. A shooting guard who once played for a pro team in Angola, was the secondoverall pick of the 2017 BIG3 draft and finished last season in the top five among league leaders in scoring, rebounding and assists. No. 2, 3’s Company, Andre Emmett. A forward who played four years for Bob Knight at Texas Tech and lived to tell about it, then played for almost two dozen pro teams — mostly overseas — before landing in the BIG3.
3 years ago via ESPN

T.J. Ford will play in the 2018 season of the Big3 league six years after retiring from the NBA following a number of scares to his surgically repaired spine. Ford, 34, told ESPN analyst Stephen Jackson in a text that he agreed to a deal with the half-court league founded by Ice Cube that features former NBA players. The Big3’s inaugural season wrapped in late August, with the Rick Mahorn-coached team Trilogy featuring Kenyon Martin, Al Harrington and Rashad McCants winning the championship, played at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.

Al knows what he’s talking about … dude’s a 16-year NBA vet and reigning BIG3 champ — and, most importantly, chats with Marbury all the time. Harrington was literally seconds away from hitting up Stephon when TMZ Sports found him in L.A. — and asked if he seriously thought the 40-year-old could still ball with the best. “Vince Carter doin’ it, so why not?” BUT … “I think he’d be better served in the BIG3.” Al told us he’s actually been recruiting Starbury for Ice Cube’s league … but it’s up to his boy to choose — or just DO BOTH!

Ice Cube is one step closer to adding “Agent 0” to his BIG3 league — with Gilbert Arenas telling TMZ Sports he’s seriously considering joining up. 35-year-old Arenas was promoting his Life Water company at 7/11 in L.A. this week when he told us he’s been in talks with Cube’s 3-on-3 league about signing on for next season. In fact, Arenas says he’s hoping the two sides can work out a sponsorship deal where his beverage company can be the official drink of the league.

In a wide-ranging interview with Rashad McCants, the BIG3 star of Trilogy told ClutchPoints that Arenas is very interested in giving the league a shot next year when asked if a proposed trio of former superstars Kobe Bryant, Paul Pierce, and Kevin Garnett would work and if any other former stars will join the league next season. “Absolutely,” McCants told ClutchPoints.com. “I spoke to Gilbert Arenas, and he said he’s definitely interested in coming in next year and a couple of others.

Bibby, now 39, retired after that season. . He welcomed the invitation from Ice Cube to play in the Big3 league the rapper and partner Jeff Kwatinetz launched this summer. “I grew up on Ice Cube’s music,” Bibby said. “Watching his movies and stuff. In my eyes, he’s like a living legend. It was something I couldn’t say no to.” Bibby would like to say yes again if invited to play in future Big3 seasons. “I would love to play as long as they’ll have me,” he said.

With the BIG3 already boasting legends of the game such as Allen Iverson, Rick Barry, Spurs great George Gervin, and others, the league’s Commissioner, Roger Mason, is already making a home for another hardwood legend – Dallas Mavericks’ Dirk Nowitzki. Mason is interested in adding Dirk once he hangs up his NBA sneakers. He also points to his time battling Nowitzki on the floor as a member of the Spurs as a starting point at recruiting the Mavs big man.

“We absolutely would be interested in Dirk Nowitzki,” said Mason. “He obviously has been one of the greatest of all time in five on five, but even where he is today he’d be a great three on three player so if he decides to hang them up this year in the NBA we certainly have a home for him here. I enjoyed my time playing against Dirk when I was with the Spurs playing Dallas a couple years ago in the playoffs so we do have a relationship and I’m sure he’s seen our games,” Mason said.

When the fledgling 3-on-3 basketball league the BIG3 comes to Dallas on July 30, Mavericks fans will see a familiar face on the court at the American Airlines Center — former Mav DeShawn Stevenson, who is taking advantage of the opportunity to keep hooping in his post-NBA career. But if the league’s founder and rap legend Ice Cube has his way, another Maverick will be suiting up for the BIG3 in a couple of years. “We hope one day to have Dirk (Nowitzki) in our league if he still wants to hoop out when he finishes (with) the Mavericks,” Ice Cube said in a recent phone interview.
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February 27, 2021 | 9:03 pm EST Update