Scotto: Kobe Bryant and Lakers Diagram Newest Championship Blueprint

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Kobe BryantKobe Bryant deserved every penny, if not more, of his two-year, $48.5 million contract extension.

And I’ll say this: Bryant doesn’t deserve to be criticized as selfish for the amount of money he will make, and any subsequent cap space the Lakers lose as a result.

Two of Bryant’s teammates, Chris Kaman and Xavier Henry, strongly agree.

“I personally think he deserved more,” Kaman told SheridanHoops. “I know the only exception with that comment is that it can be hard for teams to get other guys and to fit pieces in when a guy makes that much money. But other than that, I think with the television deal the Lakers got and with the long-term sponsors they’ve gotten off of the back of Kobe and some other players, I think he deserves it. I think he could have been underpaid for what the owners are making compared to what he’s making.”

“He’s earned everything he’s got,” Henry told Sheridan Hoops. “He literally has earned every single thing he’s gotten, so for people to think he should take more of a pay cut is really not the right idea and it’s unappreciative of what he’s done.”

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Tweet of the Day: Jalen Rose Predicts Epic Un-Retirement

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Popular ESPN personality Bill Simmons and his NBA on ESPN cohost Jalen Rose sat in front of a camera to record the NBA Preview for the B.S. Report on Grantland.com.

During the episode, Jalen made a striking prediction for the 2013-14 NBA season.

That’s right. Jalen Rose expects 50-year-old Michael Jordan to come out of retirement and don a Charlotte Bobcats uniform or one game this season.

MJ-jersey

Will Michael Jordan ditch the tie to don the Bobcats jersey?

It’s quite a bold prediction.

Unfortunately, as the Grantland Network and Danny Chau suggest, it is quite unfounded.

According to Article XXIX, Section 8, of the NBA’s collective bargaining agreement, entitled “Limitation on Player Ownership”:

During the term of this Agreement, no NBA player may acquire or hold a direct or indirect interest in the ownership of any NBA Team; provided, however, that any player may own shares of any publicly-traded company that directly or indirectly owns an NBA Team.

Jordan’s current situation as the majority owner and chairman of the Bobcats prohibits him from suiting up as an NBA player.

The legalities involved in trying to make even a one-game comeback possible are quite overwhelming. It simply doesn’t make sense.

And, even though Simmons presumes that Rose tends to “know things,” there is no amount of inside knowledge that can supersede the collective bargaining agreement.

 

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Michael writes the Tweet of the Day for SheridanHoops.com and is the Atlanta Hawks NBA Featured Columnist for BleacherReport.com

Union chief Billy Hunter placed on indefinite leave

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NBA Players Association executive director Billy Hunter has been placed on indefinite leave, the first step in removing the embattled union chief from his position.

The news comes from both Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports and the NBC Sports Network.

Hunter has been temporarily replaced by union general counsel Ron Klempner.

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David Stern doesn’t want sponsor patches on jerseys. Do you?

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Commissioner David Stern is overseas, helping sell the NBA brand with its annual round of exhibition games in Europe and Asia.

On Sunday, he was in Milan, Italy, watching the Boston Celtics – one of the few NBA teams that are a brand celtics small logounto themselves – take apart Italian club EA7 Emporio Armani Milano.

EA7 Emporio Armani is an apparel and accessory company and the primary sponsor of Milano of Lega A in Italy. The company logo is plastered across the front of the team’s jersey, supplanting the spot for conventional nickname, like “Celtics.”

And as you can see from this photo, EA7 Emporio Armani may be Milano’s biggest jersey sponsor, but it certainly isn’t the only one. If you’re looking for the actual team name, check the right side above the chest, where it says “Olimpia Milano 1936″ in a somewhat smallish font.

The NBA isn’t going to “billboard basketball” just yet. But it was announced this summer that there is broad support from NBA owners for their teams to begin wearing 2 1/2-inch square sponsor patches of corporate sponsors such as McDonald’s, Coca-Cola and Kia in the 2013-14 season.

FYI, a 2 1/2-inch square is smaller than the Cinesport video box to the right of this post.

Here’s the thing. Stern doesn’t want sponsor patches on jerseys.

That’s the same David Stern whose stewardship as commissioner has seen the financial growth of the NBA represented by the addition of seven teams; the relocation of six teams;  the advent of All-Star Weekend; overseas preseason and regular season games; the inclusion of NBA players in international competitions; a league-owned TV network and website in multiple languages; a subscription TV and radio package; the renovation and construction of arenas with increased club seating and luxury suites; an additional round of playoffs; two lockouts that shortened seasons to ensure long-term profitability for owners; and a virtually exclusive secondary ticket market.

Yeah, that David Stern. That guy doesn’t want sponsor patches on his teams’ jerseys.

“As a personal matter, I am not in favor of it, but I’m not standing in the way of it,” Stern told CSNNE.com. “If my board wants to do it, we’ll do it.”

While the belief is that Stern’s stance is grounded in tradition, it may be personal as well. For nearly 30 years, he has worked hard to mine revenue streams – some of them extremely lucrative – that did not compromise the purity of appearance of the game’s highest level when it is on display.

So while you may cringe at the site of third jerseys, throwback jerseys, St. Patrick’s Day jerseys and brooklyn nets small logobilingual jerseys, Stern takes some pride in never having had you look at a sponsored jersey.

“Of all the leagues in the world, the NBA is the only one that has its own logo on it,” Stern told CSNNE.com. “No information of the manufacturer and no sponsor, and that is something that I have worked hard to preserve for many decades. But I understand that the team may have to come to consider it. So we’re going to let the Board of Governors decide what to do.”

Stern’s personal preference doesn’t stand a chance against NBA owners, who already have rubber-stamped the sponsorship of everything from starting lineups to end-of-season awards and are rubbing their hands together at the thought of an additional $160 million in revenue through brand exposure.

Players care if their uniforms are comfortable and fit properly. Once someone explains to them that they get about half of that $160 million, the grumbling about looking like an overseas league will barely be audible.

It’s somewhat refreshing that Stern cares about tradition. Do you? Leave a comment above.