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August 24, 2013

Syracuse shooter James Southerland to be in Charlotte Bobcats training camp

            Former Syracuse forward James Southerland, a long-range shooter who wasn’t drafted in June, has accepted an invitation to Charlotte Bobcats training camp, president of basketball operations Rod Higgins confirmed Saturday.

            Southerland, a 6-8 forward, made 40 percent from the college 3-point line as a senior for the Orangemen. Long-range shooting has been a concern for the Bobcats, as new coach Steve Clifford tries to create better spacing offensively.

            Southerland will come to training camp at UNC Asheville on an unguaranteed contract and he’ll have a challenge making the team. The Bobcats have plenty of power forwards. They drafted Cody Zeller fourth overall and re-signed Josh McRoberts. They have Jeff Adrien on an unguaranteed deal and recently signed Anthony Tolliver, also to improve their shooting.

            At small forward, the Bobcats have Michael Kidd-Gilchrist and the quickly improving Jeff Taylor.

Posted by Observer Sports on August 24, 2013 at 03:37 PM | Permalink | Comments (65)

August 23, 2013

Duke's Seth Curry signs with Golden State Warriors

    Charlottean and former Duke guard Seth Curry, who went undrafted in June, has signed with the Golden State Warriors, where his brother, Stephen, already stars.

    Curry signed an unguaranteed contract, which is essentially an invitation to training camp in October.

            Curry had surgery following Duke’s season to stabilize a stress fracture in his right shin. That precluded him from working out for NBA teams before the draft or playing in summer league. The Charlotte Bobcats offered him a spot on their summer league team, but he wasn’t yet physically cleared to play in July.

            Curry expressed interest in being in the Bobcats’ training camp in Asheville, but nothing came to fruition.

            Like his brother and his father – Bobcats television analyst Dell – Seth is a particularly skilled long-range shooter. He made 44 percent of his 3-point attempts as a Duke senior, averaging 17.5 points per game, while playing through that stress fracture.

            Stephen Curry, who starred at Davidson, became the central piece in the Warriors’ upset of the Denver Nuggets in the first round of the playoffs. Curry has excelled in the NBA as a point guard. Seth Curry, who is 6-foot-2, played mostly shooting guard his senior season at Duke.

Posted by Observer Sports on August 23, 2013 at 07:44 PM | Permalink | Comments (15)

August 16, 2013

Charlotte Bobcats assistant coach Bob Beyer arrested

            Charlotte Bobcats assistant coach Bob Beyer was arrested in upstate New York Thursday night following an incident in a Saratoga Springs restaurant.

            Beyer, 51, was charged with second-degree obstructing governmental administration, resisting arrest and disorderly conduct.

            A Bobcats spokesman said Beyer is still employed by the team and issued the following statement: “We are aware of the incident. It is a legal matter and we will have no further comment until the legal process has run its course.’’

            Police told the Saratogian newspaper that Beyer and two acquaintances had an altercation with bouncers at a Saratoga Springs restaurant at around 11:15 p.m. One of those acquaintances, Edward Parenteau, allegedly assaulted one of the bouncers, resulting in an arrest. Beyer and Ryan Chartrand were both charged with interfering with that arrest.

            New Bobcats head coach Steve Clifford worked for Beyer when Beyer coached Siena from 1994 through 1997. Clifford hired Beyer last month, along with four other assists, to fill out his staff.

            Previous to Clifford hiring him, Beyer was an assistant with the Toronto Raptors, Orlando Magic and Golden State Warriors.

Posted by Observer Sports on August 16, 2013 at 04:13 PM | Permalink | Comments (23)

August 10, 2013

Charlotte Bobcats come to terms with forward Anthony Tolliver

    Free-agent Anthony Tolliver, a 6-foot-8 forward with five seasons of NBA experience, has agreed to a one-year, veteran-minimum deal with the Charlotte Bobcats.

    Tolliver, who played for the Atlanta Hawks last season, reportedly drew interest from a variety of teams, including the Chicago Bulls and Utah Jazz. He has a history with members of the Bobcats coaching staff, working with assistants Stephen Silas at Golden State and Bob Weiss in Atlanta last season.

            Tolliver has played for the San Antonio Spurs, Portland Trail Blazers, Warriors, Minnesota Timberwolves and Hawks. He has career averages of 6.1 points and 4.1 rebounds. His shooting is not particularly strong – 41.3 percent from the field.

            Tolliver went unselected in the 2007 draft after playing for Creighton. He played professionally in Germany as a rookie, then got his NBA chance in 2008 with the Spurs.

He had his best season statistically (2009-10) with the Warriors, averaging 12.3 points and 7.3 rebounds. The Warriors had such a rash of injuries that season that the NBA gave them an extra hardship roster spot. Tolliver was signed to a 10-day contract out of the development league, and played so well he stuck the rest of the season.

When Tolliver formally signs his contract, the Bobcats will have 13 players under guaranteed deals for next season, plus power forward Jeff Adrien on an unguaranteed contract. Earlier this week the Bobcats re-signed Jannero Pargo to serve as the third point guard behind Kemba Walker and Ramon Sessions.

Posted by Observer Sports on August 10, 2013 at 12:49 PM | Permalink | Comments (63)

August 08, 2013

Charlotte Bobcats to re-sign Jannero Pargo; Anthony Tolliver could be next

    The Charlotte Bobcats are bringing back Jannero Pargo to serve as their third point guard and could soon add forward Anthony Tolliver.

            Bobcats president of basketball operations Rod Higgins told the Observer the team has come to terms with Pargo and has offered Tolliver a one-year, veteran-minimum contract.

            Pargo was with the Bobcats their last 17 games last season, filling in after backup point guard Ramon Sessions suffered a season-ending knee sprain. A nine-season NBA veteran, Pargo averaged 8.6 points, 1.9 assists and just over 16 minutes. He was particularly helpful as a 3-point shooter, making 38 percent of his attempts for a team that was 27th among 30 teams in that statistic.

            New coach Steve Clifford said at summer league last month that adding a reliable third point guard was his top priority for the last couple of roster spots. Clifford said he also wanted to have a sixth option at the center/power forward positions.

             Tolliver, a 6-foot-9 power forward, has played for six teams over five NBA seasons, most recently the Atlanta Hawks. Last season he averaged 4.1 points and 2.5 rebounds for the Hawks. He struggled as a shooter, making 38 percent of his attempts from the field.

            Tolliver has reportedly also drawn interest from the Chicago Bulls and Utah Jazz.

Posted by Observer Sports on August 8, 2013 at 05:08 PM | Permalink | Comments (22)

August 05, 2013

Charlotte Bobcats' Gerald Henderson talks contract, roster and his new head coach

1lQJSH.St.138Gerald Henderson is betting he’ll be a measurably better basketball player two year hence than he is right now.

Henderson signed a 3-year, $18 million contract to continue playing for the Charlotte Bobcats. He has the option to void the last season on that deal to become an unrestricted free agent in the summer of 2015. He gave up about $1 million a season to get that option.

“I’ve improved every year and I believe I’ll continue to improve,’’ Henderson said. “I have that much confidence in myself.’’

Strange as this sounds for someone entering his fifth NBA season, Henderson is the longest-tenured Bobcat. That speaks to how much change this roster has experienced.  Two new acquisitions – free-agent center Al Jefferson and rookie power forward Cody Zeller – will likely start and a rookie head coach, Steve Clifford, has been hired.

Henderson is thrilled with the makeover.

“I always said getting a big man like Al Jefferson would be great. And then they got Al Jefferson,’’ Henderson said. “Cody Zeller is a guy who can instantly help us with his athleticism. He’s ready to play. Like any rookie, he’s going to have tons of room to grow, but he is ready to play.’’

Henderson has met with Clifford four times already. Henderson sees some parallels between Clifford and his college coach, Duke’s Mike Krzyzewski, in that Clifford seems to be a creative problem-solver.

“One of the first things he said to me is, ‘I can make you a great scorer by putting you in better positions all of the time. If there’s something you’re not particularly good at, I’m not going to put you in that in volume.’ ’’ Henderson said.

Henderson thinks Clifford will be particularly good for a player like second-year small forward Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, who needs to become more skilled.

“All he knows right now is to play hard. Having someone thinking for him is what he needs,’’ Henderson said. “It’s watching tape with him and showing him how to use his fake. In the whole realm of things it might be small, but these are the things you can’t come up with by yourself.’’

Henderson was a co-captain last season and he seems comfortable with leading; certainly more so than point guard Kemba Walker, who is uneasy with ordering around teammates. Henderson said he was part of the “problem’’ going 28-120 the past two seasons, so it was important to him to be part of the fix.

“I was part of it. You want to be part of the solution as well. That definitely weighed in,’’ Henderson said.

“The No. 1 thing I learned from Coach K is to be responsible for yourself. You can worry about how the team is doing. But if you’re not concerned about how your play is affecting the team, then you’re being selfish. How are you performing? In a non-selfish way you should always evaluate yourself.

“That’s his biggest thing. That’s about being a man. Get your work in. Do your part.’’

Posted by Observer Sports on August 5, 2013 at 12:55 PM | Permalink | Comments (31)