Monday, January 20, 2014

Washington Wizards possibly interested in Pistons' Greg Monroe

The Washington Wizards are reportedly interested in acquiring Detroit Pistons forward Greg Monroe.  Washington plans to pursue the big man in either free agency or before the NBA trade deadline, Alex Kennedy of reports.

With Detroit sitting with a 17-24 record, the team may look ahead to the future and entertain trade offers for Monroe.

"One player who has been mentioned in trade rumors throughout this season is Greg Monroe, the young power forward who will be a restricted free agent this offseason since he couldn't agree on an extension with the Pistons," Kennedy wrote on Monday.  "...It's possible that Detroit moves the valuable Monroe to upgrade another position and slide (Josh) Smith over to power forward.     

"One team is interested in Monroe is the Washington Wizards, according to multiple league sources.  It's becoming clear that Washington is planning to pursue (Monroe), either through trade or free agency."

Kennedy added, "How the team performs in the coming weeks could determine what the (Pistons') front office does next, similar to what's occurring with the Toronto Raptors right now."

The frontcourt of Monroe, Smith and Drummond hasn't worked out as expected when Detroit made Smith their big free agent signing in the summer.  Trading Monroe would net Detroit assets — picks, young talent or expiring contracts — to use in the future.

Although Washington has only $43.1 million on the books for next season, the team is expected to re-sign Trevor Ariza and Marcin Gortat when their contracts expire in July.

Nene currently starts at the 4-spot for Washington and is under contract through 2016, but he's struggled staying healthy throughout his career.

Monroe, the 2010 No. 7 overall draft pick, is averaging 14.4 points and 8.8 rebounds per game.

If I'm Joe Dumars I make the deal if I can get another team involved or get the Wizards to give up Otto Porter or Bradley Beal and I don't see the Wizards giving up Beal.

The Pistons are desperate for a bonafide wing scorer and peddling Monroe might be the only way the team can get one, but the problem is that Dumars has a tendency to overvalue his players and I can see him holding on to Monroe.

Florida State basketball signee arrested for eating marijuana during traffic stop

In something out of the movie Half Baked, three junior college basketball players are facing drug charges for trying to be creative while hiding marijuana.

Florida State basketball signee Cinmeon Bowers was arrested Thursday for allegedly eating marijuana in attempt to hide it during a routine traffic stop.

Bowers currently plays basketball for Chipola College, and signed with the Seminoles at the end of 2013. He was the first commitment of FSU's 2014 class.

Two other basketball players were arrested with Bowers and taken to Jackson County Correctional Facility. They were pulled over for speeding in Marianna, but police say they smelled marijuana in the vehicle. All three are charged with tampering with evidence.

Bowers, Torian Graham and Jamaar McKay-Taylor have been suspended indefinitely from the Chipola College basketball team until the school conducts its own investigation. FSU athletics has not yet commented on Bowers' arrest.

Manny Pacquiao says he'd fight Floyd Mayweather for free

Manny Pacquiao wasn’t joking when he dared Floyd Mayweather to a fight where all the revenue and all the proceeds will go to charities around the world.

"I’m really challenging him" said Pacquiao last night.

The Filipino boxing icon must have had enough of Mayweather saying Pacquiao is desperate to fight him because of his tax problems.

Mayweather was quoted as saying that Pacquiao “wants me to solve his problems for him.”

Pacquiao is facing tax woes from the IRS (Internal Revenue Service) in the United States and the BIR (Bureau of Internal Revenue) in the Philippines.

But the 35-year-old congressman from Sarangani said he’s “going through the process” of settling all his obligations

 “Floyd says I’m after the money,” said Pacquiao, who’s coming off an impressive win over Brandon Rios last November.

Before that, he lost two in a row against Tim Bradley and Juan Manuel Marquez, raising questions on whether it was time for him to retire.

But he came back strong against Rios, and shortly after the win, the twin tax issues cropped up.

Pacquiao reiterated his latest challenge to Mayweather.

“We fight and nobody gets any money,” said Pacquiao. “Floyd, if you’re a real man, fight me. Let’s do it for the love of boxing and for the fans. Let’s do it not for the sake of money. Let’s make the boxing fans happy.”

Pacquiao’s business manager, Eric Pineda, last night said it’s now up to Mayweather to take the challenge or not.

“The ball is in his hands now. Manny is willing to fight him for charity. And Manny is serious,” said Pineda.

Pacquiao is scheduled to return to the ring on April 12 in Las Vegas but has yet to name his opponent. He is choosing between Tim Bradley and Ruslan Provodnikov.

Unconfirmed reports said a couple more names are in the mix, including Robert Guerrero, but Top Rank chief Bob Arum told The STAR the Mexican-American is not in the list.

Mayweather is also scheduled to plunge back into action in May 3, but like Pacquiao he hasn’t named his opponent.

Mayweather makes twice as much as Pacquiao when he fights, and a couple of days ago the undefeated American said he will retire in September 2015.

Whoever he fights next, Pacquiao can make around $20 million, meaning he can’t be that desperate. And if he wins his next fight, he can do a couple more fights and earn as much or even more.

Even without fighting Mayweather.

Now Pacquiao, who must have donated millions to charity, is willing to fight Mayweather – for free.

He’s turning the Fight of the Century into the Fight for Charity.

“The public clamor for a Pacquiao-Mayweather bout is getting stronger. The only way he can avoid facing me in the ring is to retire from boxing,” Pacquiao said.

Both fighters need to stop the posturing and get down to business. Make the superfight everyone is still waiting for and stop playing chicken.