Thabeet cancels workout

Tells Grizzlies he injured shoulder

The Associated PressJune 22, 2009 

Hasheem Thabeet canceled a predraft workout with the Memphis Grizzlies on Sunday citing a shoulder injury, but he also had plans to talk to other teams.

"Thabeet was a combination of he's had some shoulder situations and he wanted to talk to some other teams," Grizzlies general manager Chris Wallace said of the 7-foot-3 center out of Connecticut. "It's also what goes on this time of the year with guys showing, not showing, that type of thing. The gamesmanship of the draft."

Memphis officials already have met with Thabeet twice in preparation for Thursday's NBA draft. Wallace said he expects to meet Thabeet later this week, but probably not for a workout.

The draft's top-rated big man, Thabeet averaged 13.6 points, 10.8 rebounds and 4.2 blocks (second in the nation) for the Huskies last season, when he was co-Big East player of the year.

A number of projections have him going to the Grizzlies with the No. 2 pick; others have Memphis taking Spanish point guard Ricky Rubio. The Los Angeles Clippers are expected to take Oklahoma forward Blake Griffin at No. 1.

The debate on Thabeet is that he is not an offensive presence, has only adequate rebounding numbers and may not be strong enough to battle in the post. But there also is the potential for continued improvement. The native of Tanzania did not start playing basketball until he was 15.

Sunday's cancellation does not affect the Grizzlies' consideration of Thabeet, although Wallace didn't reveal his draft plans.

"We go on what they do in their careers. That's the vast majority of your final grade," Wallace said. "The workout has very little to do with it. You're just covering yourself with the workout."

With Thabeet's cancellation, the Grizzlies watched Jordan Hill, the 6-10 forward-center out of Arizona, and Demar DeRozan, a guard-forward from Southern California, in individual workouts.

Judge to consider sentencing Williams: Today in Trenton, N.J., a judge will consider whether former NBA star Jayson Williams should be sentenced for covering up a fatal shooting at his mansion in 2002, given Williams' recent erratic behavior, including an assault arrest in North Carolina.

Williams, 41, was acquitted of aggravated manslaughter in 2004 but convicted on four counts of trying to cover up the shooting of a hired driver at his Hunterdon County mansion. The jury couldn't reach a verdict on a reckless manslaughter count, and State Superior Court Judge Edward M. Coleman has delayed sentencing pending Williams' retrial on that charge.

Prosecutors are asking the judge to reconsider the sentencing delay because of Williams' recent run-ins with the law.

In April, police used a stun gun on Williams during an altercation in a New York hotel room, and in May he was arrested in North Carolina and charged with assault for allegedly punching someone in a barroom dispute. Earlier this year, his wife filed divorce papers claiming he was abusive and had a drug problem.

Williams' retrial, scheduled for January, has been pushed back several times.

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