Americans Playing in China: Top 10 Performances

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Have you ever wondered what became of Delonte West? How about Randolph Morris? Hamed Haddadi? Marcus 553px-Delonte_West_CelticsWilliams?

They are all part of the growing contingent of former NBA players in the Chinese Basketball Association. The CBA is definitely a league of its own and well worth following for its American star power.

Defense is not a priority in the CBA, an offensive-minded league which emphasizes transition and the 3-pointer. It is a great place for undersized guards, tweener forwards and big men not quite good enough to stick in the NBA.

If you want to see ludicrous individual performances on a nightly basis, look no further. Here are the top 10 reasons to follow the CBA this season.

StatBox Free Agency Breakdown: Grizzlies hope Fab Melo amounts to something after Celtics give up

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In a seemingly minor trade, two former first-round picks from Syracuse were swapped for one another Thursday. Boston sent 2012 first-rounder Fab Melo to Memphis for the non-guaranteed contract of Donte Greene. This trade has relatively minor implications, but an impact nonetheless that will be laid out.

Screen Shot 2013-08-16 at 11.45.28 AMIt would be a surprise if Greene plays a single minute for the Celtics. The former Sacramento King didn’t play last season after breaking his ankle last summer. This was after a 2011-2012 season where he shot 40.6 percent from the field (exactly his career average) and a horrific 23.8 percent from the arc.

Even with this ghastly percentage, Greene still managed to hoist two 3-pointers per content in 53 games. Perplexing. Despite being nearly 7 feet tall, he has averaged just 5.1 rebounds per 36 minutes over his four-year career.

Tweet of the Night: Hamed Haddadi

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The 7-foot Iranian center (now the property of the Phoenix Suns) has been traded two times in the past several weeks, but a piece of his heart clearly still remains in Memphis, where the Grizzlies learned Saturday that former owner Michael Heisley had been hospitalized due to a stroke.

Heisley was stricken last weekend soon after returning home from Houston, where he attended the NBA All-Star game.

“The family appreciates all the thoughts and prayers,” Heisley’s wife, Agnes, said Saturday in a statement that requested respect for the family’s privacy.

Heisley’s net worth is $1.9 billion, according to Forbes magazine. He paid $160 million for the Grizzlies in 2000 when the franchise was in Vancouver. The NBA allowed Heisley to move the Grizzlies to Memphis in 2001.

He recently sold the team to California technology mogul Robert Pera, who chairs an ownership band that includes a number of local investors. The Pera-led group purchased the team for $377 million last October.

“On behalf of the entire Grizzlies organization, its fans and all those Mike touched in Memphis, our thoughts and prayers are with him, Agnes and the entire Heisley family through this trying time. We wish Mike a speedy recovery and hope to see him back courtside at FedExForum soon,” Griz CEO Jason Levien said in a statement.

 

 

Tweet of the Day: Mike Conley and Tony Allen

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Some moments in life take you by surprise and some leave you flabbergasted. Then, there are times where something leaves you completely speechless.

Enter Memphis Grizzlies guard Mike Conley.

Bernucca: Handing out NBA midseason awards

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A dozen teams have played at least half their schedule and another seven will join them today, when the most of the most significant holidays in this country’s history becomes the season’s unofficial midway point.

So Dr. Martin Luther King Day is as good a time as any to examine the current front-runners for the annual awards. Included are links to both our staff’s preseason picks and the current rankings.

And as always, we’ve included snide remarks if/when necessary.

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