Wednesday Market Watch

By - June 06, 2007

Your weekly look at the trends in the ever-fluctuating college basketball market:

Florida: The most prominent hold of the offseason happened in Gainesville where the Gators lost and then recovered Billy Donovan just days after the program's conquering hero accepted a lucrative contract offer with the Orlando Magic. This was Rollie Massimino, Gregg Marshall and Dana Altman rolled into one, in light of the high-profile nature of the jobs and the raw numbers involved: Donovan turned down $27.5 million over six years to return to the two-time defending national champs.

Kansas: All-American swingman Brandon Rush underwent successful surgery Friday on the torn anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee. Bill Self says Rush can start rehabilitation immediately and should return to action in four to six weeks. Said the presumably relieved Kansas coach: "The surgery couldn't have gone any better. The doctors couldn't be more pleased."

Kevin Durant: By now, surely you've heard about the lithe 19-year-old's dubious non-performance in the bench press at the NBA pre-draft camp this past week. But not until the blogosphere put two and two together did the general public realize that George W. Bush benches more than the national player of the year. I love the Internet.

Louisiana Tech: The second-leading scorer in NBA history is returning to his roots. Karl Malone is trucking down to Ruston, La., to join head coach Kerry Rupp's staff as director of basketball promotion and, appropriately enough, an assistant strength coach. Tech supporters can only hope that the Mailman is able to instill some of his renowned work ethic in the Bulldogs, who graduate six seniors from a team that struggled to a 10-20 record and a seventh-place finish in the WAC this past season.

Second-Round Picks: Maybe the NBA pre-draft camp's growing reputation as a farm for second-round talent isn't such a bad thing after all. Consider the league's conference finals which wrapped up this past week: Cleveland reserve guard Daniel Gibson (the No. 42 pick in 2006) rang home a game-high 31 points in Game 6 of the East finals to power the Cavaliers past the vaunted Pistons. Meanwhile out west, Carlos Boozer (the No. 36 pick in 2002) powered the Jazz to their first conference finals appearance since 1998 -- with teammate Paul Millsap (the No. 47 pick in 2006) providing valuable minutes off the bench.

Prisoner No. 655321: Poor Paris. Looks like white is the orange at Los Angeles County jail.

Posted by at 05:27 PM on June 06, 2007

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