Derrick Rose leads Team USA past Greece; Meet the next Sprewell

By: 08.26.10  •  39 Comments

Derrick Rose (photo. Chad Griffith)

Leave it to the WWE guy to bring the hyperbole. Immediately after Team USA beat Greece in its last exhibition game before the World Championship, WWE-turned-ESPN talking head Jonathan “The Coach” Coachman looked right into the camera and said, “Team USA looking very sharp!” So we’re guessing he wasn’t counting the 17 turnovers, the 7-for-28 shooting outside the arc, or that the U.S. made Greek big man Kostas Tsartsaris (24 pts, 9-12 FG) look like a lighter, hairy, slightly less sweaty Patrick Ewing … But that’s all nit-picking. At the end of the day, it was a dominating 28-point rout for the Americans, who were led by Derrick Rose (13 pts) and Eric Gordon (18 pts, 4 threes). Kevin Durant chipped in 15 points, but it was the backcourt and the rebounding that won this one … On the not-so-good side: Andre Iguodala air-balled multiple threes, Lamar Odom was nearly invisible as the starting center, and Tyson Chandler was worse than Odom. Chandler got scored on more than the casting couch at Brian Pumper‘s production company … Here’s a J.R. Smith story that doesn’t involve tattoos or bad shot selection: As reported by AOL Fanhouse and confirmed by Denver police, J.R. was involved in an “altercation” at the Nuggets practice facility earlier this month, although prosecutors decided not to file charges. A player not on the Nuggets (apparently a D-League guy) said J.R. went Latrell Sprewell on him after a workout drill where coaches had told him to get physical with J.R., but J.R. didn’t like it … One great thing (out of several) about having Ron Artest on the Lakers is that instead of trying to bait Kobe into delivering bulletin-board material, reporters know Ron is always good for a crazy quote with zero filter. With Doc Rivers spitting his new, “Our starting five has never lost a series” rhetoric, Artest of course had a comeback. In a series of Twitter posts, Ron-Ron wrote: “Doc got one million excuses. Just come back this season (and) take what you want.” And later: “Nobody made excuses when Boston came to (Sacramento) when I was there and they embarrassed us. Acting like they were hardcore.” … Did you see where the New England Patriots’ kicker got a 4-year, $14 million contract? The KICKER is making $3.5 million per year, or basically more than double what Tracy McGrady and Shaquille O’Neal are making this season … Straight from the owner’s mouth in D.C., Gilbert Arenas is raining buckets and dunking on NBA guys in pickup games at the Wizards’ gym. But from now until the trade deadline passes — or until we see that Gil really can play with John Wall — every praise of Arenas from Wizards staff will come off like they’re just trying to raise his trade value. Arenas is on the verge of being this season’s Kevin Martin, getting shipped off as soon as it becomes clear he’s not The Franchise anymore and the rookie PG has taken over like DJ Khaled … We’re out like J.R. Smith having to choke a …

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