April 2012 | Page 21 of 25 | Zagsblog
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Adam Zagoria covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
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Wednesday / April 1.
  • GREENBURGH, N.Y. — The last time the Knicks played the Chicago Bulls, Mike D’Antoni was their head coach and Jeremy Lin and Amar’e Stoudemire both started.

    Now, nearly a month after that March 12 Bulls’ victory in Chicago, D’Antoni is gone permanently and Lin and Stoudemire are injured and out for the foreseeable future.

    Still, the Knicks are 10-3 under interim coach Mike Woodson entering Sunday’s Easter Day tilt against the Bulls at Madison Square Garden and anxious for the rematch.

    If the playoffs started today, the two teams would tangle in the first round, with the Bulls as the No. 1 seed and the Knicks at No. 8.

    Over the last couple of days, UConn junior power forward Alex Oriakhi met at his Lowell, Mass., home with Kentucky coach John Calipari, Xavier coach Chris Mack and Missouri coach Frank Haith.

    Oriakhi later confirmed a report by CBSSports.com that he plans to visit Missouri next weekend (April 13) and Kentucky the following weekend.

    Kentucky, Xavier and Missouri are offering major playing time next season, Oriakhi told SNY.tv, and he is also considering North Carolina and Duke.

    As for the visit with Calipari, Oriakhi said: “It went real well. Coach Calipari, he broke it down for me. He told me he wasn’t going to promise me anything, which I like. He’s not going to promise me anything.

    Marquis Webb, the former Paterson Catholic and Rutgers star, has been named an assistant coach on Bashir Mason’s staff at Wagner.

    “We are extremely happy to have Marquis join our Wagner Basketball family,” Mason said. “He is a rising star in the coaching profession, but above that he is an outstanding person.”

    At George Mason, Webb worked under head coach Paul Hewitt in helping the Patriots to

    While Shabazz Muhammad and Nerlens Noel are expected to announce their college choices on Wednesday, another elite 2012 player seems further from making up his mind.

    Anthony Bennett, a 6-foot-7 Canadian forward who attends Henderson (Nev.) Findlay Prep, said he is still torn between the five schools he is considering and plans to take all five official visits after next Saturday’s Jordan Brand Classic in Charlotte, N.C.

    “Yeah, it is tough [making a decision],” Bennett told SNY.tv from Portland, Ore., where he will play for the World Select Team on Saturday night against Muhammad and Team USA. “That’s why I haven’t made my decison yet, but hopefully after I take all my visits it won’t be so hard.”

    Add Florida International to the list of things Isiah Thomas has failed at in recent years.

    Effectively running the Knicks, the Continental Basketball Association and now FIU have all proved beyond his capabilities.

    Thomas was fired by FIU on Friday after going 26-65 in three seasons.

    “We want to thank Isiah Thomas for his three years here at FIU,” executive director of sports and entertainment Pete Garcia said. “However, we have decided to take the program in a different direction.” 

    In case you missed it, Anthony Davis was tremendous on Jimmy Kimmel last night.

    Kimmel wasn’t bad, either.

    Davis, the presumptive No. 1 pick in the NBA Draft, told Kimmel he thought about shaving his unibrow when he got to campus, but decided to keep it as his signature.

    “Yeah, you know what, you don’t need two eyebrows,” Kimmel fired back. “One is perfectly fine.”