Kevin Ollie played in 82 games for the Cleveland Cavaliers during the 2003-2004 season, LeBron James' rookie year in the League. Ollie started 7 games for then coach Paul Silas and averaged 4 points and 3 assists over 17 minutes of action per night. Other notable appearances during the '03-04 season were made by Cleveland native J.R. Bremer, Mateen Cleaves, Darius "Frequent Flier" Miles, DaJaun Wagner, Jason Kapono, and of course Ricky Davis. What a squad. Anyways, Kevin Ollie is back in the news for better reasons than his former teammate Miles lately, because there's been quite a bit of buzz about Ollie being next in line to replace Jim Calhoun when he eventually steps down at UConn.
Ray Allen mentioned this week that he'd support the hiring of the one time Cavalier:
"Allen offered no insight into Calhoun's future plans, but he said his former coach is in a good position with a talented roster and a solid coaching staff. Allen is especially excited to see Kevin Ollie on the bench, possibly being groomed as the next head coach.
"He's always been a leader, just a natural leader," Allen said. "To me, he's always shown me the signs of what hard work looks like and overachieving. He's always put the pressure on me to work harder than what my talent level was capable of giving up. He's always pushed me, and I know he's done that to his guys, those young guys."'If only he had that same effect on D-Miles.
Antawn Jamison is "not too hot to play abroad" according to Updated French report
I've spent a few of these locked-out NBA moments trying tyring to put myself in the respective positions of some of these guys, and speculate as to whether or not I'd go try to earn an overseas paycheck while the labor negotiations continue to keep NBA doors barred shut. For players like Manny Harris, I could see where I'd want to stay right where I'm at and keep both my focus and grind centered around my goal of an NBA career like he's doing right now. For Omri Casspi, to go home and earn $40,000 a month while having the chance to spend time with friends and family you don't get too see too much anymore and also work out with and play for a team you've already played on in Tel-Aviv also makes sense, for him. Two different guys, two different positions, where two different decisions make the same amount of sense.
But Antawn Jamison coming off an injury-riddled season at the age of 35? [Ozzie Guillen voice] Please. Doesn't make sense, and I didn't believe it when I first heard he was interested in Europe earlier in the week from this initial report via BasketUSA.com - google translated from French:
Our colleagues Catch & Shoot reveal that Justin Harper was not the first option of the GIS for the position of wing box. According Makhtar Ndiaye, former Tar Heel, now players' agent is former teammate at North Carolina, Antawn Jamison who nearly landed in Strasbourg! At 35, Jamison is free agent, and it is one of the players most likely to find a European club for the upcoming season.
I didn't take French but wing box always comes up when google translating something about an NBA small forward, so that's what I think it means. The takeaway in the report was that last line though, about Jamison being "one of the players most likely to find a European club for the upcoming season." Only until they updated their report at 9:15 pm last night in France to add the following:
"We have contacted the camp Jamison and the two sides were far from agreement: Jamison is not too hot to play abroad, especially because he wants to stay with his family."
Right, of course he does.
Kyrie Irving is Holding a Basketball Camp in Cleveland
The Kyrie Irving 2011 Basketball Camp is next month, and all the details can be found here. It's being held for 7 to 18 year olds, so I just barely missed the cut, and it's $99 if you know somebody who might be interested. It's being held at Westlake Recreation Center on Hilliard, and when I clicked on the link to see who else would be there it was just the bio of Kyrie at this point. I imagine he'll have some of his NBA brethren in the house for some expert instruction as well though, but if it's just the number one overall pick himself that'd probably be fine too. Good to see Kyrie getting involved in the Cleveland community already.