Looks like the Nets may have both of their point guards playing overseas during the lockout.
Deron Williams will be playing in Istanbul, and now his backup Jordan Farmar is in serious talks to play for Maccabi Haifa in Israel, reports Mark Stein at ESPN. Farmar has one more year left on his deal with the Nets (plus a player option on another season), so the contract will have to have an opt-out clause to allow him to return to the NBA and Nets should the owners and players ever stop suing each other.
“We’ve been in serious talks with Jordan Farmar, who has expressed great interest to play for Maccabi Haifa,” (team owner Jeffrey) Rosen said. “We believe we are close to an agreement, but we have a few more hurdles to overcome to make it happen. We would love to have Jordan Farmar join Maccabi Haifa during the NBA lockout and we find his aspirations to play in Israel to be inspirational.”
Israeli media reports say that Maccabi Haifa could face competition for Farmar from longtime Israeli club power Maccabi Tel Aviv, which perennially contends for the Euroleague title.
Farmar, who is Jewish, would play as an American, taking one of the foreign born spots on the roster.
Maccabi Haifa is the team that took Jeremy Tyler, the standout high school junior out of San Diego who wanted to play professionally. Tyler played one season for them, one season in Japan and then was drafted No. 39 in the last draft and will play for the Warriors. Maccabi Haifa finished ninth in a 10-team league last season.
John Wall is one of the hardest players to guard in the NBA. J.R. Smith found that out the hard way on Tuesday night when Wall sent him flying with a behind-the-back dribble before making an easy layup.
The Wizards beat the Cavs, who are now 13-5 on the season.
Kobe Bryant‘s pregame tribute video stole the show in Philadelphia, but Tuesday night was Moses Malone tribute night. The former league MVP and Hall of Famer passed away in September, and his legacy was honored by the Sixers during a halftime ceremony. During the festivities, Malone’s son announced that his No. 2 will be retired by the organization next season.
There’s no question that Malone, one of the greatest players in the history of the sport, deserves to have his number retired. The only relevant question is: why didn’t this happen years ago? The ceremony next season should be good, but it would have been better if they had done it when Malone was alive to participate in it. No Sixers player has worn No. 2 since Malone anyway, but it’s been over 20 years since he last wore a Sixers jersey. Why couldn’t they have found some time in those two decades to have a ceremony and hang a banner?
Perhaps LeBron James‘ most underappreciated skill has been his passing. He is rightly hailed as the most unselfish superstar of his generation, but being a willing passer is only part of it: he’s also as good at it as any point guard in the league. Case in point: this two-handed halfcourt bounce pass on Tuesday night, finding Richard Jefferson for an easy dunk:
Kobe Bryant‘s relationship with his hometown of Philadelphia had its rocky sections — the Kobe’s Lakers beat the Sixers in the 2001 Finals, and then Kobe was booed during the 2002 All-Star Game — but all was forgiven on Tuesday night.
In his final trip to Philly, he was given a framed Lower Merion High School jersey — that’s Kobe’s school, in case you forgot — and it was presented by Dr. J.
Then the fans welcomed him like you see above.
That pumped up Kobe, who scored 13 first quarter points on 5-of-10 shooting, his best quarter of the season.