NBA teams are officially allowed to talk to agents, essentially tipping off what should be an NBA free agency frenzy (even if the names involved aren't exactly the stars of the league). That shouldn't affect D-League call-ups quite yet as teams work to lock up the bigger names first, meaning Ridiculous Upside will have to focus on other things happening around the Development League.
There will be a random 10:30 a.m. matinee game between the Iowa Energy and Rio Grande Valley Vipers if anyone's looking to watch actual basketball this lovely Wednesday morning. Until then, however, Ridiculous Upside has rounded up the most interesting links from around the web.
Starting it off lighthearted, there was a fun feature on the Maine Red Claws' Kenny Hayes and Chris Wright published on Tuesday. Apparently they both were aspiring professional wrestlers before their basketball careers took off:
Kenny Hayes was Stone Cold Steve Austin. Chris Wright was The Rock. Or maybe The Undertaker. They would arrange the furniture in Wright's basement to simulate a wrestling ring. And then they would go at it, Hayes usually mimicking all the best moves of their favorite pro wrestlers at the time, Wright usually the victim of his moves.
"Oh yeah," said Ernestine Grigsby, Wright's mother. "Down in the basement. They did all that stupid WWF stuff -- the DDT, the Piledriver. They thought they were having a cage match, all that craziness."
The Austin Toros are trying out some new technology for the San Antonio Spurs. Toros players are wearing a garment of clothing that looks like a sports bra, but apparently is one of the latest developments in sports science.
"It's a load meter and it's a new sports science thing," Toros head coach Brad Jones said. "It's like a vest you put on underneath [your clothes] and you wear it in practice and it keeps track of the energy you're burning."
"Everything: speed, heart rate, distance covered," Toros trainer Nixon Dorvilien said. "By gathering all that information, sometimes you'll be able to tell if an athlete is being overtrained or how they're recovering."
According to Coach Jones, the Spurs heard about it from one of the English Premier League teams. On Catapult's list of clients, several EPL teams are listed including Liverpool and Everton. Also listed, are the New York Knicks and Dallas Mavericks.
Staying in Texas, Spud Webb has put the Texas Legends in the news. The former NBA player and current president of basketball operations for the Donnie Nelson owned team is going to be coaching strippers in New York.
"These ladies are fabulous and have obvious talents and skills. I can't think of a better way to entertain long-suffering NBA fans," Webb said during a Monday press conference.
"He's a hero to people of all sizes and he shows that anyone can accomplish anything," said Gianna, a PG on the New York team which will compete against other strip clubs from Rick's Cabaret International, Inc. in the "Rick's Basketball Association." "Of course we are happy the NBA is coming back in December-they are some of our best customers. We'll play ‘til the NBA season starts because our fans and customers want it."
A couple of D-League transactions happened this week, too, as the Los Angeles D-Fenders traded for Elijah Millsap, the Springfield Armor acquired former Cornell big man Jeff Foote and the Maine Red Claws brought back Antonio Anderson -- though there's still no sign of Paul Harris.
Last, but not least, here's a good read about former NBA player Eddie Robinson trying to make it back to the NBA through a different North American minor league.