Odds ‘n’ Ends

This entry is going to be largely about the rumor mill. The mill has been working overtime lately, churning out the nice powdery flour of speculation cakes.
First, off it seems that Luol Deng might be one and done at Duke. The DBR is understandably concerned.
No word yet that I know of about Shaun Livingston.
In Chapel Hill, things don’t sound so good about JR Smith. Just after they got official word that Marvin Williams is coming, rumors are flying fast and furious that Smith will never enroll at UNC.
At Virginia, they aren’t fortunate to recruit the kind of players who consider skipping college for the NBA, but that doesn’t mean they can’t be hurt. The mill says that Derrick Byars is going to transfer. At the beginning of this past season, it appeared that Byars would be UVA’s top offensive player, maybe even busting out to all-conference level. Didn’t happen. He had a very shaky season, and it sounds like he wasn’t happy. More bad news for “Beleaguered” Pete Gillen (that’s his official title now).
I also want to update the Mike Danton story that I posted about yesterday. Man, has this story gotten weirder and sadder. Evidently, he’s been estranged from his family for some years now. According to his father, it’s all because of his former junior hockey coach and current agent, David Frost. Frost is a controversial figure who’s been banned from coaching in two separate hockey leagues.
Evidently, Frost and Danton have had a long, suspicious relationship. Former teammates said that Danton didn’t socialize much with them, but would spend long periods of time alone with their coach, Frost.
Frost, of course, blames Danton’s father.
Obviously, the big angle that many are tap dancing around is the issue that I brought up in yesterday’s posting – that it sounds like Danton was trying to off his gay lover. Predictably, his agent and lawyer are denying that that’s true at all. The interesting thing though is the comments from his teammates. Obviously, they came to the same conclusion, but they all sounded very supportive of him. They didn’t come out (no pun intended) and say that they thought he was gay, but they pretty clearly said that they wouldn’t mind if he were.
So, maybe the one rainbow (OK, that one was intentional – my bad) to come from this storm is that we’ll find that pro athletes aren’t the bigoted Neaderthals everyone assumes them to be. Maybe they would be cool with a gay teammate. We might just get to find out sooner than we thought.
I’ll close this rumor-filled entry with one hard, incontorvertable fact. In case you missed it (and I know you didn’t), Freddy Adu got his first professional goal this weekend. It was only his third game, and he’s had less than a game and a half of field time. Maybe the hype is legit.

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