Tar Heel Pros News & Notes

This week's update on former Tar Heel hoopsters: NBA Summer League update; Cota makes a splash in Panama, Shammond Williams close to returning to the NBA; Kuester headed to Orlando; Hanners could head to Denver; Wolf leaves CBA for NBA ...


* ... Former Tar Heel Jawad Williams has two games in the book for the Los Angeles Clippers at the Vegas NBA Summer League in Las Vegas. In his first game on Saturday against Golden State, Williams played eight minutes, scored two points (1-2 FG) and grabbed one rebound. The Clippers lost 91-85.

Williams doubled his playing time on Sunday to 16 minutes in a 78-62 win over Boston. Williams gathered in three rebounds, had one steal and scored two points (1-5 FG, 0-1 3-pt. FG). The Clippers (1-1) play again on Tuesday, Thursday and Friday.

Byron Sanders got on the court for the Lakers on Saturday in Long Beach, California, at the SoCal Summer Pro League. Sanders scored four points on 2-for-2 from the field with two boards in seven minutes in an 89-87 loss to Memphis. The Lakers have summer games scheduled through July 19.

The Orlando Pro Summer League begins today in suburban Orlando with two former Tar Heels that could see action -- Sean May of the Charlotte Bobcats and Jackie Manuel with Chicago. Joe Forte was released by Miami before play began. The league plays three games per day from today through Friday.

The Orlando Pro Summer League games will be streamed live over the Internet, according to nba.com. Go to nba.com for more information.

Marvin Williams will be with the Atlanta Hawks for six games at the Rocky Mountain Revue in Salt Lake City, Utah, July 14 - 21.

Check the IC front page for "Heels in NBA Summer League Update" or use this link -- http://northcarolina.scout.com/2/544900.html -- for the latest game stats on the Tar Heels playing NBA summer hoops.


* ... Ed Cota made his debut with the national team of Panama last week in the 20th Central American and Caribbean Basketball Championship (aka Centrobasket 2006) held in Panama City, Panama.

Latinbasket.com called Cota "an immediate sensation" as Panama won the gold medal at Centrobasket with a 5-0 record.

"His playmaking skills, coolness and experience has proven key for the victories that Panama has obtained in the championship," the report added.

With only 11.8 seconds left against Dominican Republic on Thursday, Panama trailed 81-80. Cota hit a three-pointer that put Panama on top 83-81 in a game they would win 85-81.

In the semifinals on Friday, Cota took control and restored order to a team that was down 34-33 at the half against Mexico. Panama took over and produced an 81-66 victory.

Cota, Ruben Garces (Providence) and Jamaal Levy (Wake Forest) are all recent additions to a talented group that previously qualified for the Basketball World Championship that will begin in Japan on August 19. Panama could also add Danilo Pinnock (George Washington) and Ruben Douglas (New Mexico) to the national team roster for that event.


* ... The Los Angeles Times reports that the Los Angeles Lakers are close on a deal they are working on to acquire Shammond Williams.

"The Lakers are trying to complete financial discussions with Williams' pro team in Spain [FC Barcelona]," the Times noted.

Williams has been with six NBA clubs and has career averages of 6.1 points and 2.5 assists. After leaving the NBA following the 2003-04 season, Williams, 31, went to Russia where he played for UNICS Kazan and played last season for FC Barcelona in Spain.

It has also been reported recently by eurobasket.com that Olympiacos of Greece is very interested in signing Williams to a contract.


* ... The Orlando Magic officially announced the addition of John Kuester to the coaching staff of head coach Brian Hill, last week.

"John brings excellent experience, energy and dedication to our staff," said Hill. "He is known for his attention to detail, the way he prepares for games, and for helping players reach their full potential. We are excited to have him as part of the Magic family."

Kuester was a Sixers assistant from 1997 to 2003 under Larry Brown. He moved on to the Detroit Pistons ('03-04) and New Jersey Nets ('04-05), then returned to Philadelphia for the 2005-06 season.


* ... The Rocky Mountain News reports that the Denver Nuggets have asked for and received permission to speak with New York assistant Dave Hanners, and he will get an interview as George Karl looks into possible replacements for assistant Scott Brooks, who went to Sacramento last month.

Karl said he had about four or five candidates that will be interviewed for the vacant assistant coach position. Hanners and Karl talked on Friday at the Vegas Summer League, according to the report.

"I don't know what they're offering," Hanners told the News. "I think the world of George Karl. Other than that, I don't know."


* ... Former Tar Heel Joe Wolf announced last week that he was leaving his job as the head coach of the Idaho Stampede. Wolf declined to comment when contacted by the Idaho Statesmen, but Stampede managing investor Bill Ilet stated, "(He) just felt that he wanted to concentrate on getting an NBA job."

Wolf has coached Idaho to a 48-48 record in two seasons in the Continental Basketball Association. The Stampede has left the CBA and is now a member of the NBA Develoment League. Wolf had one year remaining on a two-year contract.


* ... With the WNBA all-star game set for Wednesday (7:30 ET, ESPN) in New York City, here's a look at the stats of the former Tar Heels active in the women's pro league at midseason:

Nikki Teasley, Washington Mystics (10-10) --- 20 games, 30.5 mpg, 12.1 ppg, 2.8 rpg and 5.5 apg with season-highs of 26 points, 11 assists and 8 rebounds.

Charlotte Smith, Indiana Fever (13-7) --- 11 games, 10.1 mpg, 1.7 ppg, 1.4 rpg and 0.4 apg with a season-high of 10 points.

La'Tangela Atkinson (R), Indiana Fever (13-7) --- 19 games, 11.7 mpg, 2.6 ppg, 2.3 rpg and 0.7 apg with season-highs of 15 points, 7 rebounds and 4 assists.

Coretta Brown, Chicago Sky (3-15) --- 1 game, 6 minutes, 0-1 FG, 2 rebounds and 2 assists. Brown was signed by Chicago on July 5.

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