Now that it’s officially NBA Draft Week, prepare to be hit with rumors flying in from all sides involving pretty much every team and every first-round pick. Regarding the #1 spot, the D-Wade-to-Chicago talk has picked up again, this time with Larry Hughes and Tyrus Thomas‘ names in the mix. And at the #30 pick, the newly-crowned champion Celtics might be looking at adding an All-American to their roster. Rumor is Roy Hibbert‘s stock is dropping to the point where he could be available when the C’s pick. That wouldn’t be the worst move for Boston; P.J. Brown could very likely retire this summer, and even if he doesn’t, Kendrick Perkins will need a backup for whenever P.J. does eventually call it a career. Plus Doc Rivers is very familiar with Hibbert, who played with his son Jeremiah Rivers at Georgetown. (Jeremiah has since transferred to Indiana.) At the same time, we also heard yesterday that the Kings like Hibbert at #12, so who knows where he’ll end up … One guy shooting up the Draft board is Brandon Rush. After a recent workout with the Blazers, Rush got big-time praise from Nate McMillan and Portland GM Kevin Pritchard. “He’s ready-made for the NBA right now,” Pritchard told The Oregonian. “He can come in and help a team right now. He can shoot it and he can defend. He’s a spot-up shooter, which every team needs, and he can defend multiple positions.” Out of the crew of Kansas guys slated to get picked in the first round — Rush, Darrell Arthur and Mario Chalmers — who do you think will make the best pro? We really like Arthur, who’s got a complete game for a power forward with range on his jumper, rebounding, interior scoring and passing skills, and he proved in the national championship game he can make big plays in crunch-time moments … In yesterday’s Smack we told you about a meeting between Carmelo Anthony and the Nuggets, originally scheduled for today, where ‘Melo wanted to know if the team was either committed to building around him or looking to trade him. Now Carmelo’s agent is saying the meeting won’t be necessary. “He’s not going to be moved,” Calvin Andrews said. “It’s not happening. We’ve been given assurances from the owner on down.” But does that mean the Nuggets just won’t try to trade ‘Melo, or that they won’t even entertain offers? … After the Raptors bought him out, Jorge Garbajosa is considering signing with CSKA Moscow, who won the Euroleague championship this year. Garbo would be joining a stacked roster that already includes Trajan Langdon, former Bucknell star J.R. Holden (featured in Dime #42, on newsstands now), Lithuanian star Ramunas Siskauskas (also featured in Dime #42) and ex-Bulls/Blazers forward Viktor Khryapa. The team also just signed Sasha Kaun from Kansas’ national championship team … One interesting rumor that has nothing to do with the Draft says the Wizards and Gilbert Arenas have already worked out a “secret” multi-year deal to keep him in D.C. Arenas said a while back he was only staying with the Wizards if Antawn Jamison was re-signed, and since we don’t know what’s happening with Jamison, it doesn’t make sense for Arenas to have already worked out a deal … Did you see Candace Parker throw down a dunk during L.A.’s win over the Indiana Fever? It was her usual breakaway one-hander, but she did get it down cleaner than some of the dunks she did in college. We remember it was a huge deal when Lisa Leslie had the WNBA’s first dunk a few years ago, but yesterday Parker’s dunk wasn’t even that hyped up. She put up 10 points, 10 boards and 4 blocks in the game … Peter Vecsey in Sunday’s New York Post: “BTW, what was up with (Kobe) Bryant feeling the need to kiss his daughters and wife during every home halftime? Doesn’t he live with them? Didn’t he see them just two hours before?” Yeah, we also don’t understand why a man would show love to his family outside of Peter Vecsey’s acceptable window for showing love. And you wonder why everyone thinks New York is full of cynical, miserable people … The downside of video camera phones: Boston police are currently combing through YouTube clips of fans rioting after the Celtics won the championship to see if they can identify anyone causing the damage. Have any of you ever been in a post-championship riot? Care to explain the thought process behind, “We won! I’m so happy I’m gonna smash this window with a street sign!” … We’re out like Garbajosa …
Nonstop NBA Draft rumors; C’s getting an All-American at #30?
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