Nets Tab Ex-Turner Exec Levy As CEO – The Brooklyn Nets are hiring former Turner executive David Levy as chief executive officer, league sources told ESPN. Levy worked closely with the NBA in his capacity overseeing Turner Sports’ television coverage and has a strong relationship with commissioner Adam Silver. Levy’s appointment will become official shortly after the league’s board of governors formally approves Tsai’s ownership later this week in New York, league sources said. Levy inherits a strong management and leadership infrastructure, including GM Sean Marks and coach Kenny Atkinson. Levy is the chosen CEO of new owner Joe Tsai, who recently purchased majority ownership from Mikhail Prokhorov for $2.3 billion. Tsai had owned 49 percent of the Nets. Levy will replace Brett Yormark as CEO. Levy joins the Nets at a historic franchise crossroads, which includes the summer free-agency signings of All-NBA players Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving.
Jordan To Sell Portion Of Hornets To 2 Investors – Charlotte Hornets owner Michael Jordan has agreed to sell a portion of the team to a pair of investors, the team announced in a release Saturday. The sale is pending NBA approval. Terms of the deal have not been released. Jordan is bringing in Gabe Plotkin, a founder of Melvin Capital, and Daniel Sundheim, a founder of DI Capital, as partners in Hornets Sports & Entertainment, of which Jordan is chairman. He will not be giving up majority control of the team. Jordan said he will “continue to run the Charlotte Hornets, make all decisions related to the team and organization, and remain the team’s NBA Governor.” “Gabe and Dan’s investment is invaluable, as we continue to modernize, add new technology and strive to compete with the best in the NBA,” Jordan said. “Both Gabe and Dan are industry standard-setters and proven leaders, with a belief in philanthropy and a passion for the game of basketball. “They share my commitment to Charlotte and the Carolinas, and I look forward to working with and learning from them.” Plotkin and Sundheim do not have previous ownership experience in a major sports franchise. Jordan became part owner of the then-Charlotte Bobcats in June 2006. He upgraded his minority share in the team in 2010, when he bought out owner Bob Johnson for $175 million. Forbes valued the Hornets at $1.3 billion in their annual list in February. The Charlotte franchise is 441-609 (.420 win percentage) since the start of the 2006-07 season, sixth-worst in the NBA in that span, ahead of only the 76ers, Knicks, Nets, Kings and Timberwolves.
NBA Mulling $10M Fine For Tampering – The NBA is looking to further crack down on tampering, proposing a new top fine of $10 million for teams conducting the practice, according to a league memo obtained by ESPN. Other maximum-fine levels could be raised significantly as well, provided the league’s board of governors approves the measures this Friday. The league sent a memo to teams on Friday detailing the proposed fines. The memo addresses what the league called a “widespread perception that many of the league’s rules are being broken on a frequent basis” when it comes to tampering, salary-cap matters and the timing of free-agency discussions. So the league wants to hit rule breakers where it hurts most: The checkbook. The league wants fines raised in part to reflect the 600% increase in league revenue and the 1,100% increase in franchise value since the fine ceilings were last touched in 1996.
Other proposals that the board of governors will consider:
- A requirement that a team report, within 24 hours, any instance of an agent or player representative asking for a benefit that is not allowed under the salary cap or collective bargaining agreement (“unauthorized benefits”)
- A requirement that teams preserve communications with players and their agents for one year
- New channels for teams and team employees to anonymously report rules violations or tampering
- Prohibiting players from inducing players under contract to request trades
- A proposal to conduct investigatory audits of five randomly selected teams each year to assess compliance with system rules
In addition, teams will have to require its governor, top basketball operations executive and negotiators to certify annually that they did not talk to free agents or their representatives before the league rules allow. And with every player contract signed, each team’s governor will have to certify that no unauthorized benefits were offered and no rules were broken. Fines for tampering with players or team personnel could go as high as $10 million, double the current limit. If a team enters into an unauthorized deal with a player, it can be fined up to $6 million — and the player can get hit with a $250,000 fine as well. Statements or conduct detrimental to the NBA could come with a $5 million fine now, up from the previous ceiling of $1 million. And a rule violation with no specific penalty could merit a $10 million fine, up from $2.5 million — the amount that Silver fined former LA Clippers owner Donald Sterling while banning him for life from the NBA in 2014 after he was found to have made racist remarks. The league also has other penalties within its reach, such as forfeiture or transfer of draft picks, suspensions, voiding of contracts and prohibiting teams from hiring the person they tampered with.
3rd Place Game:
- France 67 – Australia 59
- Argentina 75 – Spain 95
Highlights: Spain are the FIBA World Cup champions yet again. The Spaniards cruised in the gold medal game against Argentina, winning 95-75, claiming their second ever FIBA World Cup title. The Spanish previously won the tournament in 2006, topping Greece. Ricky Rubio played the starring role, scoring 20 points while adding three assists. But it was a team performance through-and-through, with Sergio Llull (15 points) and Marc Gasol (14 points, seven rebounds, seven assists, three blocks, two steals) also putting together excellent performances. In total, six different players scored double-digit points for Spain, while the team’s defense held Argentina to 36 percent shooting from the field, blocking eight shots and posting nine total steals.
Team USA finished its tour of the FIBA World Cup on Saturday by knocking off Poland, 87-74. The win earned them a seventh-place finish, Team USA’s worst ever in a World Cup or Olympics. USA Basketball was already short-handed when it set its 12-man roster, leading to managing director Jerry Colangelo making a burn list of players who skipped the tournament but were down to nine healthy players on Saturday. Three different Boston Celtics players had to sit out due to injuries: Kemba Walker (neck), Jayson Tatum (ankle) and Marcus Smart (left knuckle). In their stead, Utah Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell took over with 16 points on 4-of-4 shooting from beyond the arc. Joe Harris scored 13 points on 5-of-9 shooting, while Khris Middleton added 13 points, six rebounds and six assists off the bench. Team USA stifled Poland defensively, holding them to 25.9 percent shooting beyond the arc and 39.7 percent overall. Indiana Pacers center Myles Turner also blocked a tournament-high four shots. Poland did not have any NBA players but did have a couple notable names for any big college basketball fans. Former Western Kentucky shooter A.J. Slaughter finished second on the team with 15 points, while current Florida State Seminoles center Dominik Olejniczak added two points off the bench. Although it was a disappointing way to end the tournament — thanks to consecutive losses to France and Serbia — Team USA tried to make a statement. They used a 10-0 run in the first quarter to build a 28-14 lead and only briefly let Poland get back within single digits in the third quarter. “Tip your cap to the world,” Turner said. “They are talented. Basketball is an international game.” The good news for USA Basketball is despite their weak performance, they’ve already qualified for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and won’t need to compete in a qualifying tournament next year. Argentina was the only other country from the Americas to finish in the top eight, so both teams received automatic bids. Spain and Argentina will meet for the championship round of the FIBA World Cup on Sunday, while France and Australia will compete in the third-place game.
- USA 87 – Poland 74
- Serbia 90 – Czech Republic 81
3-Time NBA Champion Livingston Retires At 34 – Guard Shaun Livingston, who won three NBA championships with the Golden State Warriors during his 15 seasons in the league, announced his retirement Friday. Livingston, who was waived by the Warriors on July 10, made his announcement on Instagram. The versatile 6-foot-7 Livingston, who turned 34 on Wednesday, came back from a devastating knee injury early in his career to become one of the league’s savviest players and a strong locker room presence. Livingston averaged 15 minutes per game over the past two seasons for the Warriors, with whom he spent five seasons and won titles in 2015, 2017 and 2018. “Shaun was a huge part of three NBA championship teams with the Warriors, but his overall journey is what is most remarkable,” Warriors CEO Joe Lacob said in a statement. “He overcame incredible odds following a devastating injury, wore nine different NBA uniforms during his comeback, had a stint in the D-League and, fittingly, ended up being a major contributor on one of the best teams in NBA history.” Livingston was drafted out of high school by the LA Clippers with the fourth overall pick in 2004. In a game against Charlotte on Feb. 26, 2007, Livingston suffered a severe knee injury, dislocating his left kneecap and snapping his leg after landing awkwardly. He suffered a torn ACL, PCL and lateral meniscus, sprained his MCL and dislocated his patella. After missing the 2007-08 season, he resumed playing with the Miami Heat in 2008 before being traded to the Oklahoma City Thunder later that season. He bounced around with several teams — Washington, Charlotte, Milwaukee, Cleveland and Brooklyn — before signing with the Warriors before the 2014 season. Livingston finished his career having averaged 6.3 points, 2.4 rebounds and 3.0 assists per game.