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By Mike Elworth: Owner and Publisher/Hoopstuff…

Yes, you read the title correctly, blame the legend. The Lakers are going into next season with a best case scenario of being the 11th seed in the Western Conference despite having Kobe Bryant, Steve Nash, enough cap space for 2 All Stars or 1 max contract and the 7th pick in the draft to start the offseason. To say that free agency went poorly would be an incredible piece of sugar coating, their offseason performance was pathetic. The 2 best players they added in free agency were Jeremy Lin and Carlos Boozer, Lin whose team was desperate to trade and Boozer who was cut by his own team; actually it could be Ed Davis and since some of you have no clue who that is that says a lot. The biggest problem? That would be inept ownership and management. Second? That would be Kobe Bryant and his ridiculous 2 season, 48.5 million dollar contract.

* Note: If you can give me an actual reason why the Lakers can be a better team than the Spurs, Clippers, Thunder, Grizzlies, Trail Blazers, Mavericks, Warriors, Rockets, Suns or Nuggets, you email it to me and if I agree with it, I will publish it.…

During the season, Kobe Bryant was re-signed to a contract that will for the next 2 seasons make him the best paid player in the Association. He is also 35, has 2 big injuries in 2 seasons and will be playing in his 19th season. Basically, by NBA standards, he is in his 40′s. His 23.5 million dollar contract next season will make for about a 3rd of their cap next season. With the Dirk Nowitzki’s and Tim Duncan’s of the NBA taking 5-10 million dollar discounts per season so that their franchises can build a title contender, Kobe Bryant’s selfish contract is denying them the chance to build a contender. Yes they could have signed Carmelo Anthony to a 20+ million dollar per season and contract and they tried, but a Lakers team with a healthy Kobe Bryant and Carmelo Anthony is still no better than a 7th or 8th seed in the West. Yes, I said selfish, because that is exactly what it is. Dirk Nowitzki and Tim Duncan are still valued at 15 million dollars per season yet will make 7.5 and 10 million respectively next season. A healthy Kobe Bryant is at the same amount, yet healthy or no, Kobe will make 23.5 million next season and 25 million in 2 seasons. Kobe Bryant covets a sixth ring, but because of that contract he won’t get it because he valued the golden dollar more than another diamond ring.

If Bryant was signed for even 15 million dollars next season, they could have started the offseason with about 34 million in cap space, enough for 2 near max players to make their own Big 3. Hypothetically they could have Kobe Bryant-Carmelo Anthony-Chris Bosh as their foundation instead of Kobe, Julius Randle and the prospect of a lot of cap space next offseason, enough for 1 star. However like this offseason, is there any elite player that would like to join a Lakers team with Kobe making 23-25 million and little else?

The Lakers if healthy have the potential to be a .500 team next season that’s it, but it will take almost 50 wins to get into the playoffs in the West. The Lakers won’t make the playoffs next season and unless they are able to sign a star next offseason, the same can be said for that next season. Kobe Bryant just had to make 23-25 million per season. He won’t win another ring and that is his fault and yes the geniuses who run the Lakers these days should be blamed too for giving him the contract, but Bryant is the selfish, egotist who took the money rather than the chance to win his 6th ring, which is what I thought mattered most to him; apparently that answer is no.


Drew Edwards Figuring Things Out

By Jamie Shaw

Recruiting is a process, the entire progression of events takes thoughts and careful evaluation. Though severely under the radar, Calvert Hall’s 2/1 combo guard Drew Edwards is ready to attack the process head on.
The 6’3 Edwards is blessed to currently have 14 offers, ranging from the Ivy League, to the Big East, to the ACC and everything between, Edwards not only has options but he also has some homework to do. With the options he has, his recruitment has been relatively quiet, however Edward is ready to start tackling the process, “I am not sure of Elite Camps I will be going to just yet, however I know I am going to visit Boston College, Southern Cal, and Kansas St officially this month.”
Being a Maryland native Edwards seems to have covered his geographical bases with an East Coast, West Coast, and Mid West team in the mix, “I want to see Boston College because they are in the ACC and that is a draw. Southern Cal has a strong Baltimore connection with Kevin Norris. I like the Kansas St coaches and the Big 12 League is a draw.” While Edwards says these three schools are at the top of his list, there are others that he is interested in learning a bit more about, “I like Virginia, Dayton, Arizona, and Richmond also, but those are my top schools in no particular order.”
Edwards, who plays AAU for the Maryland 3D program, is a natural combo guard who likes to be on the ball. A naturally aggressive scorer, Edwards can make shots from multiple areas of the court, at each level. In the half court setting, Edwards has the ability to handle as a secondary handler and get his team into sets.
On his visits, Edwards is looking for a place that really takes basketball seriously, a place that he is able to capitalize on his ceiling, “I want great crowds every night, and really just a huge college environment. I love a lot of people and love the top notch facilities too. I would also prefer the basketball areas to have their own specific equipment and areas just for them.”

BMore Elite's Clareth Shines in First Session 05/14/2014,

By Jack LeGwin, D1 Circuit

Nico Clareth made quite a name for himself in his first weekend on the EYBL circuit in Dallas, averaging 20.5 points, 3.0 rebounds, 2.2 assists, and 2 steals per game, despite Baltimore Elite going winless, 0-4, during the weekend.

“I feel like I played pretty well,” Clareth said. “I know my role on the team is scoring, but I’m not really worried about the personal stats. I guess I need to pick it up to get the win, but we’re progressing.”

Clareth says that it was an amazing experience to see the level of play that the EYBL has to offer.

“It was really fantastic to see that much talent on the court at one time,” Clareth said. “Everybody is so athletic, everybody can score 20 plus points every game. I got to see Dennis Smith, Dillon Brooks from CIA Bounce up close, so I got to see first-hand how good everyone is.”

Clareth currently holds offers from UNC-Greensboro, Radford, UMBC, Towson and UNLV, while Loyola, Quinnipiac, College of Charleston, Lehigh, Colgate, Yale, Boston College, Delaware and George Mason have all shown significant interest in the high-scoring guard from Calvert Hall (Md.). That list should grow ten-fold by the end of the circuit.

“I feel like I made a good first impression,” Clareth said. “I showed a good sample of my scoring abilities.”

While he played so well this weekend, Clareth mentioned that one of his highlights from the weekend wasn’t on the court.

“Meeting Julius Randle was crazy, he’s my favorite player,” Clareth said. “Seeing him just casually walking around was really cool.”

The EYBL will be heading much closer to Clareth’s home in Hampton, Virginia. He says that the support will be key for them this coming weekend.

“I know that my whole family will be there because they live in Virginia, so we’ll have a better support system,” Clareth said. “That should pick us up a little bit.”

If Clareth continues playing the way he did in Frisco, there is a good chance that he will be a player to watch in the rankings as the summer continues on.

Dwight Howard Says Blacks Hate on Each Other, Then Get Mad at Other Races

Dwight’s premise is correct, there are often times black people are responsible for attempting to hold other black people down.

While the broader point Dwight is making has validity, the specific point about his “haters” is a little off. While I am sure he deals with his share of vulgar language and racial slurs (which all athletes have to deal with sadly), I think his critics white, black, yellow or Kaepernick are hard on him because they want him to be a great player.

Also some feel that he doesn’t practice what he preaches. He claims to be a nice and holy christian but with multiple baby mamas and a girlfriend can’t even say his name publicly or even acknowledges. So, there are valid reasons why people come at him.

As far as on the court, he was solid for the Rockets and better in the playoffs. He is happier in Houston, even though the end results was the same as they were last year. I think next year will tell if the Rockets are really contenders or just pretenders who care about more things than just basketball.

@ai3mcgrady jus sick of blacks always hating on blacks. It’s stupid to me. We always hate on each other but get mad when another race do it

Denzel Richardson Headed To Eastern Kentucky

Former Calvert Hall hoops standout joins Division I program via Florida junior college

Former Calvert Hall College basketball player Denzel Richardson, signed a scholarship with Eastern Kentucky University last week. Richardson, a 2012 graduate of The Hall, played the past two seasons at Pensacola State College in Florida.

Richardson, a 6-foot-5 guard, averaged a team-high 11.1 points along with 3.9 rebounds last season for Pensacola State, which went 21-11 last season. He was an all-MIAA A and Baltimore Catholic League first-team selection in his senior season in 2011-12.

Eastern Kentucky went 24-10 last season, losing to Kansas in the second round of the NCAA Tournament. The Colonels won the Ohio Valley Conference championship.

Denzel Richardson Signs His Letter Of Intent To Eastern Kentucky

UNLV Keeps Rice, and Loaded Recruiting Class, Too

March 29th, 2014 10:08 pm
MorganNEW YORK — UNLV not only kept their head coach.

They kept their loaded recruiting class intact, too.

By saying they will recommend a contract extension with head coach Dave Rice through the 2018-19 season instead of letting him flee to sunny South Florida, the Runnin’ Rebels also kept intact a three-man recruiting class of Dwayne Morgan, Goodluck Okonoboh and Rashad Vaughn

“Had Dave Rice not announced he was coming back, for sure Dwayne Morgan and Rashad Vaughn were going to stick together regardless,” Morgan’s trainer and mentor, Dwayne Wise, told over the phone Saturday.

“Dwayne would’ve had to get a release, which wouldn’t have been a problem. Dwayne and Rashad were definitely planning on sticking together.”

The 6-foot-8 Morgan committed to UNLV a year ago, then signed a National Letter of Intent and has since helped successfully recruit the 6-5 Vaughn to Vegas. Vaughn committed in February, choosing UNLV over Iowa State, Kentucky, Kansas and North Carolina, but cannot sign an NLI until next month. Through a family spokesman, the Vaughns declined to comment.

VaughnThe duo would’ve made a huge late-season addition for some lucky school, with Wise saying Louisville and Indiana would’ve been in the mix for both, while Maryland would’ve had a shot for the home-state Morgan.

“Dwayne and Rashad were definitely planning on sticking together,” Wise said. “Louisville would’ve been possibly ideal. Indiana, just a few other locations where they would’ve been a lock at the 2 and 3. Maryland, depending on the situation with their scholarships.”

It’s unclear what the 6-9 Okonoboh would have done but make no mistake, this would’ve been a huge loss for UNLV and a huge gain for somebody else’s program. According to, Vaughn is the No. 18 prospect in the Class of 2014, Okonoboh is No. 23 and Morgan No. 38.

Vaughn is projected as the No. 11 pick in the 2015 NBA Draft by

Wise said there was a conference call Friday with the two players, Vaughn’s father, Morgan’s mother and an advisor to Vaughn in which they actively discussed leaving UNLV if Rice had taken the USF job, which at one point was Steve Masiello’s to lose.

“They were both looking at schools that were already considering before they committed,” Wise said.

But disaster for UNLV was avoided earlier Saturday when Wise said Rice called him to inform him he would be remaining at UNLV.

“Dave Rice contacted me and Dwayne’s mother as as soon as he knew that he had what he needed to get done to stay as a coach at UNLV,” Wise said. “He’s staying. Ne notified me.”

According to, Rice made $700,000 at UNLV, while USF is looking to pay its new coach more than $1 million a year.

Now, Wise believes, Morgan, Vaughn and Okonoboh can form the core of something positive at UNLV, along with San Francisco point guard transfer Cody Doolin and the returning core, which may or may not include junior big Khem Birch, who is considering the NBA Draft.

“With these guys even if Khem returns they are gonna possibly be a Sweet 16 team,” Wise said. “These kids are coming in with a different kind of work ethic and skill. They have a chance to be a Sweet 16 team if Khem returns.

“If Khem doesn’t return, they will definitely get into the NCAA Tournament,” Wise said.

And Dave Rice now has that to look forward to, even if he won’t be in South Florida.

Eagles Cut DeSean Jackson Over Gang Ties, Attitude, & Off Field Behavior

By Austin Knoblauch

DeSean Jackson’s run with the Philadelphia Eagles is over.
As anticipated, the Eagles released Jackson on Friday after efforts to trade him ultimately were unsuccessful. The wide receiver is coming off his best season in Philadelphia, and is expected to generate plenty of interest in the free-agent market.
Jackson, a former Long Beach Poly High and California standout, finished with 82 catches for 1,332 yards and nine touchdowns in 2013. He was set to earn $10.25 million in 2014 and was under contract with the Eagles through 2016.
In addition to his rich contract, the Eagles reportedly were apprehensive of Jackson’s off-field behavior and bad attitude. His alleged association with Los Angeles gang members also reportedly played a role in the Eagles cutting him.
Despite this, Jackson should have plenty of suitors among NFL teams looking to improve their respective passing games. Last week, New York Jets owner Woody Johnson said Jackson was among the players the team was possibly interested in signing.
In six seasons with the Eagles, Jackson, 27, had 365 receptions for 6,117 yards and 32 touchdowns.

Miller's Time- The Miller's Have Paid Their Dues

For Sean and Archie Miller, nothing was ever good enough.

“We’d win a state championship,” remembers Archie Miller, now the coach of the Dayton Flyers, “and it was like it never happened to my dad. No: ‘Hey, great job!’ No: ‘You did it!’ Nothing. Two days later, you’d be practicing your butt off for the first AAU game of the year.”

“I remember once against Beaver Falls,” recalls Sean Miller, now the coach of the Arizona Wildcats, “it was this huge rivalry game. And we’d finally beaten them. I was dribbling the clock out. I held up my finger like, ‘We’re No. 1!’ to the crowd. I looked over at my dad and it was like he was going to throw me through the wall.”

Now these two are the first brothers in NCAA men’s basketball tournament history to make it to the same Sweet Sixteen coaching different teams.

Will that be good enough?

Oh, hell yes.

“I wasn’t expecting this,” says John Miller, 70, who won four state titles and 657 games as a high school coach in western Pennsylvania, many of them while coaching his two sons. “I mean, I thought someday something like this might happen, but not this year. From Arch’s standpoint, it’s icing on the cake for him. He’s overachieved. It’s a little different with Arizona. They’re a 1-seed; if they lose early, it’d be bad.”

If that’s as close the sons will get to an “attaboy,” it will have to do.

“I could feel that [last weekend],” Sean says. “I was so happy for Archie winning, but then I realized it was upping the pressure on me. I didn’t want to be the one screwing this thing up.”

For Sean, 45, and Archie, 35, pressure came with the furniture. There was no Miller Light.

“Sean was his whipping boy,” says Archie, whose Dayton team shocked No. 6 seed Ohio State and then No. 3 seed Syracuse to get to the Sweet 16. “Nobody knows how hard my dad was on Sean. I think about my dad now. Even just working out, getting things done, he’s a psycho, almost a kamikaze. And he’s 70 years old! I can’t imagine him in his 30s, when he coached Sean.”

Imagine The Great Santini.

Arizona’s Sean Miller acknowledges the pressure of being a 1-seed in the NCAA tournament.
“I never really patted Sean on the back,” John remembers. “Never once. If he scored 35 in a game, I’d be on him about his defense. I made it as hard and tough as any guy could be on a kid heading for college. I wanted him to be tough. And he became tough. He went from high school and took the reins of the starting point guard at Pitt — at 18 years old. For four years.”

“Archie had it easy compared to me,” says Sean, whose Arizona team coasted to the Sweet 16 with wins over 16th-seeded Weber State and No. 8 seed Gonzaga. “I can remember having to go shovel a foot of snow off the driveway because he wanted me to go shoot free throws. He’d be like, ‘You’re from Beaver County. Nobody’s going to come just hand you a scholarship. You have to outwork every single player in the country.’ And I’d go out there.”

His dad even made him dribble everywhere he went, even the mile to the gym for games. Finally, one day, somebody stole his ball. “And I thought, ‘Cool! I won’t have to dribble to games anymore!’ ” Sean says. But when he got home, his dad had a new ball waiting for him, with a giant MILLER written in black Magic Marker across it.

It must’ve worked. Sean became such a sensation dribbler, he went on “The Tonight Show” with Johnny Carson.

“I had it easy?” Archie asks. “No way. Every car ride, every dinner table, every basketball camp, you’d look him in the eye and you’d think, ‘Oh, man. He is not messing around right now.’ ”

Both sons say their father’s Egyptian-slave work ethic is the single biggest reason they’re in the Sweet 16 together. And both are thrilled for him now. Both say he’s an all-new — and much softer — man with their kids. And both are tickled for him as much as anybody.

“Twenty years later,” Sean says, “I look around and see it’s my brother and I who are standing with the winners. So I guess it worked out.”

They each would need three more wins before coaching against each other in this thing — in no less than the championship game in Arlington, Texas. For dad, it would mean that for once, he wouldn’t have to watch at least one game on his smartphone.

Archie Miller used two upsets to get his team to the Sweet Sixteen.
“Oh, I wouldn’t dread that,” says John, who also has two daughters between the boys. “It’d be fun. I’d look forward to it.”

Archie, who will have his dad in the stands Thursday night in Memphis, won’t even broach the notion. “I’ve always envisioned Sean at such a higher level than me. I mean, I know that we’re doing great things at Dayton, but it’s just ingrained in me. Maybe someday  But if I did have to coach against him? I don’t know. I’d hate to be on that sideline.”

Sean: “What if we just won one more game each? (Both coach Thursday night, back-to-back, with Dayton playing Stanford, and Arizona facing San Diego State in Anaheim, Calif.) To have the two Miller brothers standing as two of the final eight? How cool would that be?”

One person who wouldn’t find it cool at all is their mom, Barb. She was in Dayton, staying home with Archie’s daughter, and watched the Ohio State game until five minutes were left. Then she turned off the TV. Too nervous. “My daughter had to watch the last five minutes on her iPad,” Archie says. “I don’t know if she could handle the two of us going against each other.”

Dayton, by the way, was the home of another set of famous brothers — the Wright Brothers. Maybe Barb knows the same harsh rule that their mother knew.

Only one son can soar at a time.


Steve Masiello Loses Deal with USF After Background Check Issues

South Florida is forced to restart its search for a new head basketball coach after the program nixed a deal with Steve Masiello when a discrepancy was found during his background check.

Joey Johnston of The Tampa Tribune reports Masiello had reached an agreement and signed a five-year contract with the school to replace Stan Heath. A final look into his background information led to a new discovery and USF decided to kill the deal:

That background-check information was discovered by Eastman & Beaudine, a Texas-based search firm that was paid $60,000 by USF to find candidates to replace Stan Heath, who was fired on March 14.

Masiello, 36, had agreed to a five-year contract with USF and signed the deal, believed to be worth more than $1 million per season, leaving only final details to be worked out.

South Florida released a statement on the situation on Wednesday afternoon (via Brett McMurphy of ESPN):

During the search for a new men’s basketball coach, an agreement in principle was reached by USF and candidate Steve Masiello. The agreement was pending a verification of credentials. Through the verification process it was determined the candidate’s credentials could not be substantiated and therefore he did not meet the requirements for the position.”

Gary Parrish of CBS Sports notes a source close to the situation states the discrepancy was in relation to a claim Masiello made on his resume. He reportedly listed that he graduated from Kentucky, and it turns out that wasn’t the case.

A source confirmed to that the discrepancy stems from Masiello’s resume indicating he graduated from Kentucky in 2000 even though he never actually graduated from Kentucky.

The 36-year-old head coach accumulated a 60-39 record over three years at Manhattan. He was viewed as one of the most promising young coaching prospects in the country, and moving to the American Athletic Conference with USF would have been the next step.

Masiello also received praise from Louisville coach Rick Pitino, whom he played for and coached under before taking the Manhattan job. The two squared off in the second round, with the Jaspers pushing the reigning champions to the limit in a narrow loss.

The Tampa Tribune report noted Pitino had said his protege was somebody capable of having success at USF, especially given the resources that would have been available:

Now it’s unclear what the future holds for Masiello.

As for South Florida, the program is forced to reboot the coaching search, which can be a very tricky task. Going back to other candidates who understand they weren’t the first choice likely means some extra convincing will be necessary, unless the department decides to go in a new direction altogether.

All told, it’s a unique situation because Masiello is clearly a strong coach with a growing track record and the experience of having worked with Pitino. Yet that isn’t enough to overcome discrepancies during a background check.

It will be interesting to see how both parties move forward. | Hang Time Blog

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