Draft bust Rafael Araujo is being called "Hoffa" in some Toronto newspapers. You know, a guy who disappears, may be dead. . . . Orlando officials are a little concerned and sending poor Grant Hill for more tests on an abdominal problem. . . . Clippers officials are a lot concerned about injured Shaun Livingston, being sent to a specialist for back issues. . . . Though their season is overshadowed by Jason Collier's death, the Atlanta Hawks are trying to put together the Magic Johnson-type team of five players about 6-8 who all handle the ball. But they seem to be missing Kareem and Worthy. . . . Cleveland's key with all its additions still will be center Zydrunas Ilgauskas, quietly having a good preseason. He's averaging 13.2 points in 21 minutes. . . . Former NBA player Haywood Workman is in the developmental league--as a referee--trying to work his way into the NBA.
Yao goes Yank
If there's a more American guy than Yao, he's hard to find. After having a toenail removed, Yao said, "I'm thinking of putting it on eBay." . . . The new "minor league" developmental idea isn't going over well yet, with most coaches saying they'd rather have their rookies learn their system with the team. The Bulls are not expected to send any players to the minor league. . . . Golden State coach Mike Montgomery promoted Keith Smart to his top assistant. . . . Chicagoan Linton Johnson is gaining notice with the Nets. . . . The Suns haven't slowed much, leading the NBA in preseason scoring at 103.2 per game. . . . No sign of Chris Webber yet in Philadelphia, with Allen Iverson averaging 29 per game in the preseason. . . . That was Naperville's Anthony Parker hitting the shot to beat Toronto for Maccabi Tel Aviv, the first time a European team has defeated an NBA team in North America. Parker has become a hero in Israel for such dramatics.
Gotta love these guys
Is there anyone better for the media than NBA players? Whether they're good for the NBA is another issue. Unable to restrain himself commenting on that supposedly draconian dress code that still allows jeans, Paul Pierce said Jeffrey Dahmer, the Wisconsin cannibal murderer, dressed well and was a criminal. So there. Pierce added: "White-collar crime is the worst there is." And you know how they dress. . . . And with Latrell Sprewell still unsigned, there's talk of a leaguewide tag day to help feed his family.