Basketball Wiretap

Bally Sports' Parent Company To Declare Bankruptcy

Feb 11, 2023 1:31 AM

Diamond Sports Group LLC., the owner of 19 Bally Sports regional sports networks, will declare bankruptcy next week.

The company has $140 million in interest payments due next week. Instead of paying the amount, the group will instead file for Chapter 11. 

The group has local broadcasting rights to over 40 teams in the NBA, NHL, and MLB. Diamond has $1.8 billion in rights fees due this year to the three sports leagues.

Diamond renewed its streaming contract for 16 NBA teams last year, including the Hawks, Heat, Mavs, Clippers, Bucks, and Suns.  

Scott Soshnick, Eben Novy-Williams, Brendan Coffey/Sportico

Tags: NBA, NBA B-Ball IQ

Arturas Karnisovas On Keeping Nikola Vucevic: We Want Him Here

Feb 10, 2023 1:25 AM

Chicago Bulls vice president Arturas Karnisovas gave a vote of confidence to Nikola Vucevic's future with the team after standing pat at the trade deadline.

"He's having an unbelievable year and we want him to be here. I think for this group, that was important. Now that the trade deadline has passed, this is the group that we're sticking with and they can go out there, play, put their foot on the gas and go on a run," said Karnisovas on Thursday.

Vucevic is currently in the final year of a four-year, $100 million deal he signed in 2019.

The Bulls were one of two teams in the league to not make any deals at the trade deadline.

Karnisovas was optimistic that the team could move up the standings this season.

"I think the trade deadline shifted some quality more towards West, so there's a chance to compete in the Eastern Conference and there's a lot of teams that are pretty good, but they're just clinched all together. I think there's a chance the next 28 games."

Jamal Collier/ESPN

Tags: Nikola Vucevic, Chicago Bulls, NBA, NBA B-Ball IQ

Lakers-Thunder Averages 2.98M Viewers, TNT's Most-Viewed Game Excluding Opening Night Since 2018

Feb 9, 2023 1:55 AM

Tuesday night's game between the Los Angeles Lakers and Oklahoma City Thunder, in which LeBron James broke the league's all-time scoring record, averaged 2.98 million viewers and a 1.7 rating on TNT.

The numbers represent TNT's most-watched regular season game outside of opening night and the Clippers-Lakers bubble restart since 2018. Outside of opening night and Christmas games, it was also the most-viewed game on cable since the Blazers-Lakers on January 31, 2020.

The game peaked with 3.7 million viewers from 11:45 pm to midnight. 


Paulsen/Sports Media Watch

Tags: LeBron James, Los Angeles Lakers, Oklahoma City Thunder, NBA, NBA B-Ball IQ

Isiah Thomas Will Not Join Suns Front Office

Feb 8, 2023 1:11 AM

Isiah Thomas will not have a role in the Phoenix Suns front office, a spokesperson for Mat Ishbia said on Tuesday.

The news refutes a tweet from Chris Haynes of Bleacher Report earlier in the day. 

Ishbia, who assumed control of the Suns on Tuesday, is looking to make a "major and immediate impact" on the team.


Duane Rankin/Arizona Republic

Tags: Phoenix Suns, NBA, NBA B-Ball IQ

Board Of Governors Approves Suns, Mercury Sale To Mat Ishbia, Transaction Expected To Close Tuesday

Feb 7, 2023 12:44 AM

The NBA's board of governors approved the sale of the Phoenix Suns and Mercury to Mat Ishbia on Monday.

The sale is expected to close on Tuesday.

Ishbia was approved as the Suns' new governor by a 29-0 vote, with the Cavs choosing to abstain.

Ishbia could be introduced by the Suns as early as Wednesday.

Baxter Holmes/ESPN

Tags: Phoenix Suns, NBA, NBA B-Ball IQ

Kevin Love Out Of Cavs Rotation

Feb 7, 2023 12:36 AM

Kevin Love is out of the Cleveland Cavaliers rotation to make room for Dean Wade, reported Chris Fedor of

Fedor adds that the decision was made following a discussion between Love and J.B. Bickerstaff.

Love is averaging 8.5 points and 6.8 rebounds this season.

Chris Fedor/

Tags: Kevin Love, Dean Wade, Cleveland Cavaliers, NBA, NBA B-Ball IQ

NBA Looking Into Incident Involving Ja Morant Associates Following Pacers Game

Feb 5, 2023 6:33 PM

Acquaintances of Ja Morant reportedly confronted members of the Indiana Pacers' traveling party following their game on January 29, with someone in an SUV in which Morant was riding in training a red laser on the group.

Two members of the Pacers' group, who felt like they were in "grave danger," said they did not see who was shining the laser and believe it was attached a gun.

"That’s 100 percent a gun," said a Pacers security guard at the time.

The Pacers reported the incident to the NBA, with the league probing the matter.

"While we substantiated that a postgame situation arose that was confrontational, based on interviews and other evidence gathered, we could not corroborate that any individual threatened others with a weapon,” said league spokeperson Mike Bass.

The January 29 game featured verbal confrontations between several members of the Pacers and Grizzlies, with a friend of Morant getting escorted off the court after a situation between Morant and Andrew Nembhard.

A spokesperson for the Grizzlies said that the team “complied completely with the league’s investigation and are abiding by its findings.” 



Bob Kravitz & Sam Amick/The Athletic

Tags: Ja Morant, Indiana Pacers, Memphis Grizzlies, NBA, NBA B-Ball IQ

Kyrie Irving Expected To Make Mavs Debut Wednesday Against Clippers

Feb 5, 2023 6:18 PM

Kyrie Irving is set to make his Dallas Mavericks debut on Wednesday against the Los Angeles Clippers, sources told Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN.

Irving was traded to the Mavs alongside Markieff Morris for Spencer Dinwiddie, Dorian Finney-Smith, and several draft picks.

Luka Doncic is also likely to return from injury on Wednesday. 

Adrian Wojnarowski/ESPN

Tags: Kyrie Irving, Luka Doncic, Dallas Mavericks, NBA, NBA B-Ball IQ

Kyrie Irving Reportedly 'Ecstatic' To Play With Luka Doncic

Feb 5, 2023 3:59 PM

Kyrie Irving is reportedly "ecstatic" and "looking forward" to playing with Luka Doncic, sources told Chris Haynes of Bleacher Report.

The Mavs consulted with Doncic before acquiring Irving and Markieff Morris for Spencer Dinwiddie, Dorian Finney-Smith, and several draft picks.


Chris Haynes/Bleacher Report

Tags: Luka Doncic, Kyrie Irving, Dallas Mavericks, NBA, NBA B-Ball IQ

Mavs Consulted With Luka Doncic Before Trading For Kyrie Irving

Feb 5, 2023 3:33 PM

The Dallas Mavericks touched base with Luka Doncic before agreeing to trade for Kyrie Irving, sources told Marc Stein of Substack.

The Mavs acquired Irving and Markieff Morris on Sunday for Spencer Dinwiddie, Dorian Finney-Smith, and several draft picks. 

Marc Stein/Substack

Tags: Luka Doncic, Kyrie Irving, Markieff Morris, Spencer Dinwiddie, Dorian Finney-Smith, Dallas Mavericks, NBA, NBA B-Ball IQ

Lakers-Celtics On Saturday Averages 2.05 Rating With 3.69M Viewers

Paulsen/Sports Media Watch

Fred VanVleet Expected To Sign With Klutch

Marc Stein/Substack

Celtics-Warriors Averages 2.4M Viewers, Most-Watched TNT Game Since Opening Night

Warner Bros. Discovery Sports

Heat Arena Temporarily Renamed To Miami-Dade Arena


Anderson Varejao Rejoins Cavs in Player Development, Global Ambassador Role