Saturday, June 6, 2015

Monday, May 11, 2015

OT: Recent NBA MVP Acceptance Speeches

Stephen Curry, 2015 NBA MVP Acceptance Speech


Kevin Durant, 2014 NBA MVP Acceptance Speech


Kevin Hart, 2015 NBA Celebrity Game MVP Acceptance Speech

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

UCLA Basketball Announces Year-End Awards at Team Banquet

UCLA hosted its 2014-15 year-end basketball banquet on campus Monday (photo by Don Liebig)
UCLA hosted its 2014-15 year-end basketball banquet on campus Monday (photo by Don Liebig)

Courtesy: UCLA Athletics

Courtesy: UCLA Athletics
Release: Monday 04/27/2015
Article Link
LOS ANGELES – The UCLA men's basketball program hosted its annual year-end banquet Monday night on campus at Carnesale Commons, with senior Norman Powell earning the Coach John Wooden Award as the team’s Most Valuable Player.
Powell, a 6-foot-4 guard from San Diego, led UCLA and ranked sixth in the conference with 16.4 points per game, starting all 36 games and securing first-team All-Pac-12 honors. Powell, who registered 4.7 rebounds, 2.1 assists and a team-leading 1.8 steals per game, played in all 141 games for UCLA over his four-year career, the fourth-highest career games total in school history.
Kevon Looney, a 6-foot-9 freshman from Milwaukee, Wis., was honored with the Gerald A. Finerman Award as the team’s rebounding leader and the Seymour Armond Memorial Award as the most valuable freshman. Looney averaged 11.6 points and 9.2 rebounds per game, starting all 36 contests. He led all freshmen in the country in rebounding average (9.2 rpg) and double-doubles (15).
Bryce Alford, a 6-foot-3 sophomore from Albuquerque, N.M., secured the UCLA Alumni Association Award as the team’s leader in assists (4.9 apg). He also was honored with the Bruin Hoopsters J.D. Morgan Memorial Award for outstanding team play. Alford capped his sophomore year having registered 15.4 points, 4.9 assists and 3.2 rebounds per game.
In addition, Alford earned the Bob “Ace” Calkins Memorial Award as the team’s top free throw shooter. He shot 83.8 percent from the free throw line, making 119 of 142 attempts and recording the fourth-highest percentage of all Pac-12 players.
Tony Parker, a 6-foot-9 forward/center from Atlanta, Ga., was honored with the Player Improvement Award, highlighting the student-athlete who displays the most improvement in all-around play and mental attitude. Parker finished his junior season having averaged 11.5 points and 6.7 rebounds per game, playing in 34 contests and making 33 starts. He led the team in field goal percentage, shooting 56.4 percent from the field (150 of 276).
Isaac Hamilton, a 6-foot-5 guard from Los Angeles, earned the Irv Pohlmeyer Memorial Award as the team’s outstanding defensive player. Hamilton averaged 10.6 points, 3.4 rebounds and 3.2 assists per game. He totaled 32 steals (0.9 spg) and finished his sophomore season having shot 38.8 percent from 3-point territory (59 of 152).
Thomas Welsh, a 7-foot center from Redondo Beach, Calif., secured the Elvin C. “Ducky” Drake Memorial Award for competitive spirit, inspiration and unselfish contributions. Welsh finished his freshman season having averaged 3.8 points, 3.8 rebounds and a team-best 1.1 blocks per game. Welsh played in all 36 games, making three starts, and ranked No. 11 in the Pac-12 in blocks per game.
Welsh and senior Kory Alford were honored as recipients of the UCLA Faculty Athletic Representative Award, presented for academic achievement and team contribution. Welsh has maintained over a 3.0 grade point average throughout his freshman year. Kory Alford has fulfilled his graduation requirements and will earn his degree in sociology this June with a cumulative UCLA grade point average above 3.0.
UCLA concluded its 2014-15 campaign with a 22-14 record, advancing to the NCAA Tournament’s Sweet 16 for the second consecutive season. The Bruins went 11-7 in Pac-12 action, finishing fourth in the conference’s regular-season standings before advancing to the semifinals of the Pac-12 Tournament. UCLA earned back-to-back Sweet 16 appearances for the first time since 2008.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

OT (sorta): LA Clippers vs Memphis Grizzlies Apr 11 2015 player intros

Cheerin for Matt Barnes at the 2:20 mark. Staples was rockin!!!

UCLA Basketball Signs Ikenna Okwarabizie to National Letter of Intent

Ikenna Okwarabizie will enroll at UCLA as a sophomore this summer
Ikenna Okwarabizie will enroll at UCLA as a sophomore this summer

Courtesy: UCLA Athletics

Courtesy: UCLA Athletics
Release: Monday 04/20/2015
Article Link
LOS ANGELES – The UCLA basketball program has received a signed National Letter of Intent from Ikenna Okwarabizie during the regular signing period, it was announced today by head coach Steve Alford.
Okwarabizie (pronounced oak-war-uh-BEE-zee-ay), a 6-foot-9, 250-pound center, spent his freshman year (2014-15) at Tyler Junior College (Tyler, Texas). In 34 games (33 starts), Okwarabizie averaged 6.5 points, 7.0 rebounds and 1.2 blocks, finishing second on the team in blocked shots (41) and total rebounds (237).
"Ike brings great size, strength and physicality to the table and will certainly help our play in the post," Alford said. "He comes from a very good program at Tyler Junior College and has been coached well. We needed to add depth to our interior, and we know that Ike will help us fill that need."
During his freshman season at Tyler JC, Okwarabizie helped lead the Apaches to a 25-9 overall record under the direction of head coach Mike Marquis. Tyler JC advanced to the second round of the NJCCA National Basketball Tournament before falling to No. 1-seed Connors State on March 17.
Okwarabizie grew up in Lagos, Nigeria and moved to the United States three years ago. He spent his junior year of high school at St. Louis Christian Academy (St. Louis, Mo.) and his senior year at East High School (Sioux City, Iowa) before enrolling at Tyler Junior College.
As a senior at East, Okwarabizie joined the team midway through its season and in 13 games, averaged 13.2 points and 12.5 rebounds per game while shooting 60 percent from the field. Prior to joining East, Okwarabizie helped St. Louis Christian Academy to a 25-5 record during the 2012-13 season. While in St. Louis, he also competed for the St. Louis Eagles AAU team.
Okwarabizie will enroll in summer school as a sophomore at UCLA beginning this June. He joins an incoming class that already features guards Prince Ali (Pembroke Pines, Fla.) and Aaron Holiday (North Hollywood, Calif.) and forward Alex Olesinski (Roswell, N.M.). All three are currently seniors in high school with Ali at The Sagemont School (Weston, Fla.), Holiday at Campbell Hall High School (North Hollywood, Calif.) and Olesinski at La Lumiere School (La Porte, Ind.).   

Monday, April 20, 2015

Update on UCLA Basketball Great Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar was admitted to Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center this week
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar was admitted to Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center this week

Courtesy: UCLA Athletics

Courtesy: UCLA Athletics
Release: Friday 04/17/2015
Article Link
UCLA Health is issuing this statement at the request of Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, the NBA’s all-time leading scorer and member of the Basketball Hall of Fame:
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar was admitted to Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center this week with cardiovascular disease, and he underwent quadruple coronary bypass surgery on April 16. The operation was performed by Dr. Richard Shemin, UCLA’s chief of cardiac surgery.
Shemin said the surgery was successful and he expects Abdul-Jabbar to make a full recovery.
At this time, Abdul-Jabbar would like to thank his surgical team and the medical staff at UCLA, his alma mater, for the excellent care he has received. He is looking forward to getting back to his normal activities soon.
He asks that you keep him in your thoughts and, most importantly, cherish and live each day to its fullest. For those wanting to send well wishes, he thanks you in advance and asks that you support those in your own community who may be suffering from various health issues.
There will be no media interviews or additional information from Abdul-Jabbar, his physician or his spokesperson. However, news media planning stand-ups at the hospital must park news vans in the southbound lane of Westwood Boulevard, south of Westwood Plaza, between Le Conte Avenue and Med Plaza Circle (in the far right lane).
Quote from UCLA Director of Athletics Dan Guerrero 
“Kareem is not only a UCLA legend, he is a national treasure. On behalf of Bruins everywhere, I want to wish him a complete and speedy recovery so he can continue to make a positive impact on society by following his passions and serving as an important cultural voice on the issues of the day.”