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Rivers Confirms Interest In MutomboCoach Doc Rivers confirmed yesterday the Celtics were interested in free agent center Dikembe Mutombo.
But he predicted Mutombo would return to Houston.
Asked if he had talked with Mutombo, Rivers replied, "Always. He's a good friend. He's going to come back. I talked to him last week - he will come back. ... We're over the [salary] cap so it's tough for us to do a lot of stuff, but we're looking at everybody."
Mutombo said he plans to sign with a team after Christmas. -- The Boston Globe
Warriors Want Felton
The Warriors and Bobcats have had discussions about Felton, an NBA source told the Observer, and the Warriors appear open to giving up either Randolph or Wright to make a deal work. -- The Charlotte Observer
Transaction TodayThe Warriors will announce a transaction today, either a trade or a waiver. They have to make room on the roster for Monta Ellis, who has to come off the suspended player list before Friday's game in Atlanta.
A source close to Marcus Williams said the little-used point guard has not reached a buyout agreement, and a Warriors source said the team doesn't want just to waive Williams and get stuck paying his entire $1.26 million salary. So unless he's part of a trade in which the Warriors give up more players than they receive, Williams likely will stay.
Paxson Trying To Make A DealGM John Paxson has been talking trade with teams recently and he will travel with the team to Boston for the game against the Celtics Friday.
"I'm trying right now, honestly," Paxson said of swinging a deal. "We've had a lot of conversations as a lot of teams are. But there's nothing right now that we've been able to lock in on.
"We're trying to find some things that fit [with Derrick Rose]. The fact of the matter is he's very, very good and we're lucky to have him. When you look at the big picture, our goal is going to be to try and get this thing built with Derrick in mind and what fits him. That's going to take a little bit of time here to try and move some pieces." -- Chicago Sun-Times
Prepared For Trade Rumors
''The reality of it is if somebody wants to say something one day they can say it,'' Marion said. ``How far is it going to carry? It can go all way the way up to the [general manager] or president. But is it true? It's not guaranteed it's true. Do I listen to everything everybody says? No.'' -- The Miami Herald
"I don't pay attention to that and I don't think these guys do either," Spoelstra said. "There's so many rumors all the time. Guys joke around about other rumors from other teams." -- The Miami Herald
Flip To Sixers DeniedSixers president/general manager Ed Stefanski reacted quickly to a posting last night on an internet site that former Minnesota Timberwolves and Detroit Pistons coach Flip Saunders was the likely next coach of the team, attributing it to a source.
"I have no idea where that is coming from," said Stefanski, who repeatedly has said that he talked to no coaching candidates outside the organization. "Tony DiLeo is our coach. We will evaluate at the end of the season." -- Philadelphia Daily News
Gordon: Drug Use Wrecked IU Season
"It was the guys that were doing drugs that were separate," Gordon told The Indianapolis Star in an exclusive telephone interview earlier this week.
Gordon didn't say which players used drugs, but he said D.J. White and two others still on the team were among those who did not.
Gordon said Sampson "tried to stop it," but the coach "was just so focused on basketball and winning and everything." -- The Indianapolis Star
To further demonstrate the Knicks' discomfort, the James Dolan-run MSG Network made the decision not to interview the banished Marbury on camera, though it had brought along a special sideline reporter in Mike Crispino. Marbury instead was interviewed on the Lakers' Fox Sports telecast.
"Too sensitive," one MSG official said. -- New York Post
Search For The 13th ManThe Suns have until Wednesday to sign a player, likely a point guard, and reach the 13-player roster minimum.
Suns General Manager Steve Kerr scouted an NBA Development League game involving Eddie Gill and Smush Parker on Tuesday. The Suns have an eye on other options in the D-League, where Walker Russell Jr. is the leading assist man.
Suns Vice President of Basketball Operations David Griffin is organizing a Monday workout for four to six point guards. The group will include a mix of D-League and ex-NBA players, possibly including Troy Hudson and Damon Stoudamire. -- The Arizona Republic
Alexander Committed To The PlanDetermined after last season and heading into this season to build around the Yao Ming andTracy McGrady foundation, owner Leslie Alexander said Wednesday he remains committed to the plan.
"I am committed to them being healthy and building a team around Yao and Tracy," Alexander said. "Nothing's changed. ... The plan really depends on Yao and Tracy's health. Yao looks like he's gotten healthy and is well. Tracy had the leg problem, which he seems to be overcoming. You can see how great he is. I mean, the guy isn't playing at his full capacity and he gets 20 points, 14 rebounds and 10 assists (Tuesday against Denver). Try to replace that with somebody at one position."
Alexander said there have been no efforts to even test the market to consider a trade involving one of his stars and that the Rockets have received no inquiries.
Will Bosh Ever Be A Maverick?
"I just wanted to play in the NBA," Bosh said. "Back then with the Mavericks, it wasn't like the Celtics or the Bulls, to be honest. I don't think there were a lot of kids in Dallas [saying] 'I'm going to grow up and play for the Mavericks one day.'"
Said Bosh of someday being a Maverick: "I'm not sure, maybe when I'm real old and almost out of the league. You never know. I'm sure they're going to have people on their free-agent list. It's just something you got to pay attention to when the time comes." -- The Dallas Morning News
Cleared To Practise
"I was a pretty tough time. I'm glad it's over. I hope in two, three or four weeks to be ready," Jawai said last night. -- Toronto Sun
Howard Will Practice Less
"It will be a day-to-day thing with Dwight. There's a plan in mind," Magic coach Stan Van Gundy. "There will be some days that he doesn't practice at all and there will be some days he does a little stuff. And there may be some days he does everything. It will depend on how he feels and what we've done on the previous days. The plan is to manage the injury and not pound it more than you have to." -- Florida Today
Interesting DecisionsYou could wind up with plenty of room under the salary cap to sign free agents next summer. You also have decisions to make, both with Raef LaFrentz's expiring contract before the Feb. 19 trade deadline, and with potential extensions for Roy, Aldridge, Blake, Sergio Rodriguez andTravis Outlaw.
Paul Allen: "We were just discussing some of those things. Given the economy, the salary cap and (luxury) tax, numbers may be down for next year, so that might give us less room to do something. Our window is this summer before we extend players. We'll have some real interesting decisions then, and also as we look toward the trade deadline.
"All those options are open, but we have a lot of talent and potential for the future with our present club. We have to be very careful about adding another player on top of what we already have." -- The Portland Tribune
Dunleavy Glad To Be Free Of Warriors
"That wasn't possible out there," said Dunleavy, referring to Oakland. "It's no coincidence so many guys who come from Golden State go elsewhere and succeed. The proof is in the pudding. I take responsibility for certain things. You look at guys who went elsewhere after leaving Golden State, they found a way. Whatever that means or says, you could read it through." -- San Francisco Chronicle
Kevin McHale said he wants Brewer to remain around the team while he rehabilitates his knee "as much as he's comfortable with."
"After you have surgery, those first few weeks are always hard," McHale said. "It's a time where mentally you've got to get yourself wrapped around it. It's hard to do." -- Minneapolis Star Tribune
"I don't look at it as (Parker's) numbers being down since he shifted to the bench. I think they've been down since he missed a couple of games with the ankle injury." Triano said. "He is trying to come back and I don't know if he's 100%." -- Toronto Sun
Gentry Open To Being Head CoachAlvin Gentry he is open to another stab as head coach. He has coached 20 years in the NBA and was a head coach for Miami, Detroit and the Los Angeles Clippers. His teams went 177-226, including a 29-21 lockout-shortened season in Detroit and a 39-43 season that was the Clippers' best in nine years.
"I'd like to be a head coach again, but only in the right situation," Gentry said. "I don't want to be a head coach just to be a head coach, if it's not a situation where you think you can be successful. I've got a great job right here. I could stay right here the rest of my career and be more than satisfied." -- The Arizona Republic
Farmar Seeks Clarity About His Role
"He didn't call me up there, I asked to talk to him -- to vent," Farmar said. "Just trying to get some things across."
"I asked them what they wanted me to do so I can go out there and do it and not be confused about my job," Farmar said. "They're not looking for me to do anything personal -- just run our offense. It affects my performance and what I do.
"I'm a guard coming off the bench playing limited minutes so I got to make those minutes count and do what the coaching staff and the organization wants." -- Los Angeles Times
Ex-Kings To Get Royal TreatmentChris Webber and Vlade Divac, two of the players most responsible for transforming the Kings into one of the NBA's most entertaining and successful franchises of the late 1990s and early part of this decade, will have their jerseys retired later this season.
Webber's ceremony is Feb. 6, either at halftime or after the Utah Jazz game. Divac's ceremony is March 31, a date he requested so friend and former teammate Peja Stojakovic can attend while in town with the New Orleans Hornets.
"We have a great deal of respect for Vlade and Chris," Kings co-owner Gavin Maloof said Wednesday. "We really appreciate their efforts and what they did for our franchise nationally and internationally." -- Sacramento Bee