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Gilbert Arenas enjoying China, not looking to return to NBA

Gilbert Arenas has gone the way of many former NBA stars and turned to China to revive his basketball career. Things must be going pretty well for him, because he made the cover of SLAM China.

Arenas’ interview with SLAM didn’t reveal a whole lot, except that he has gone back to wearing number zero, and he seems to be doing well. Gil even told SLAM that he’s not looking to get back to the NBA.

From SLAM’s interview:

SLAM: So do you have long-term plans in China? What do you see for yourself in the future here?

GA: 32 games a year. Maximum 36 minutes. That’s all I need at this point in my career. So as long as China teams want me, I’ll be here.

SLAM: Do you have any plans or hopes to tryout with the NBA again?

GA: Nah! [Shakes head vehemently] Because after this season I can enjoy my family. You know my kids are getting older. Being in the NBA, you don’t really get to enjoy your family life because you’re always on the road, you’re always gone. So, no. After this season will be the first time I’ll get to be with my kids for a long period of time.

Arenas’ team went 10-22 and finished 14th out of 17 teams. He missed about half the season after sustaining a groin injury in his first game, and re-aggravating it after returning. In his 14 games for the team, which is owned by Yao Ming, he averaged a respectable 20.7 points and 7.3 rebounds per game while shooting 50 percent (stats via Asia-Basket).

Arenas is 31 and saw limited action in 17 games with the Memphis Grizzlies last season. He could still play in the NBA, but he’s not close to being the All-Star he once was. He’s probably just as well off playing in China and enjoying being a mini-celebrity. He was a lot of fun during his run of brilliance in the NBA.

Photo credit: Spruce Derden-US PRESSWIRE

My auto mechanic is now breaking NBA news about Gilbert Arenas

An NBA report circulated on Tuesday that said Gilbert Arenas was likely to join either the Lakers or Clippers if he ends up signing with an NBA team this season. The report wasn’t as notable to me because of its content, but because of the origin of report; it came from my auto mechanic.

This is a story about the way information spreads in 2012.

Gilbert Arenas, who grew up in Los Angeles and played high school basketball in North Hollywood, Calif., stopped by a 76 gas station in Sherman Oaks on Tuesday a few blocks away from where I grew up. Gil took a photo with one of the mechanics — a gentleman who has worked on my car in the past — and answered a question about his future. Arenas apparently said he was likely to sign with the Lakers or Clippers for the upcoming season.

You know how the rest of the story goes.

My mechanic tells someone who tells someone else who publishes the story on his basketball blog Hoops-Nation. From there, it ends up on a Lakers blog, and then our friends at Black Sports Online picked up on it, which is where I saw the story.

I’m not really too concerned about the accuracy of the story, but rather the amusing way it became a story. But since it’s out there, we can discuss the possibility of Arenas joining either LA team.

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Gilbert Arenas once put dog poop in Andray Blatche’s sneaker

Now that Gilbert Arenas is a third-string guard who plays for the Grizzlies, he’s probably not having as much fun as he used to. He was already heading downhill in Washington before the gun incident, but that became the final straw for his career with the Wizards. However, when Arenas was one of the highest-paid players in the NBA, he was known as a prankster. That could be why Andray Blatche once falsely accused him of cutting up his suit.

In an interview with the USA Today, Arenas told a story about Blatche once throwing all of his clothes in the jacuzzi because he thought Gilbert cut up his suit. Arenas insists he was not the culprit, but he was forced to get back at Blatche for throwing his clothes in the hot tub. He decided to take aim at Blatche’s sneakers

“It was just dog doo-doo in it,” Arenas recalled. “It was really dog doo-doo. … I took his sole out, threw it under there, put the sole back on and threw the baby powder on there so he couldn’t smell it.”

Advantage: Arenas. Based on the way he went about the prank, this sounds like a man who has pulled the dog s*** in the sneaker prank before. Under the sole and baby powder to mask the smell? That kind of expertise doesn’t just come to you one morning when you wake up. Either Gilbert did a lot of Google research ahead of time, or Andre wasn’t the first person to feel the squish at the hands of Agent Zero.

Photo credit: Kelvin Kuo-US PRESSWIRE

Gilbert Arenas on Javaris Crittenton: ‘Everyone finds out who was the real problem’

Javaris Crittenton is currently out on bail and awaiting trial after being slapped with murder charges last summer in the shooting death of a 22-year-old Atlanta mother. But Crittenton is perhaps better known for a previous gun-related incident — when he and Gilbert Arenas infamously pulled guns on each other in the Wizards locker room in December 2009.

Arenas, who signed with the Grizzlies last month, says he’s finally at peace with his life after going through what he called “dark years” following his incident with Crittenton. But in retrospect, he feels that he unfairly bore the brunt of the backlash from the locker room ordeal and that Crittenton didn’t receive as much scrutiny as he should have. Arenas hopes Crittenton’s latest troubles vindicate his belief.

“Hey, when it was supposed to have been both of us going through the same thing, I didn’t hear his name,’’ Arenas told Fox Sports Florida’s Chris Tomasson. “It was Gilbert and a teammate. Now, everyone finds out who was the real problem. Hopefully, he gets through it, and God bless him. But that’s none of my concern.

“Like people say, the light eventually turns on the good one. At first, I was supposed to have been the bad seed, but I’m back doing something I love and that’s all I can think about. I can’t think about what he’s going through. He has his own problems and, hopefully, I just wish him the best.’’

I think Crittenton has more pressing matters than worrying about what Arenas has to say about their Wild West re-enactment from over two years ago. It’s probably time for Gil to move on, too.

Photo credit: Spruce Derden-US PRESSWIRE

Grizzlies GM got idea to sign Gilbert Arenas from reading a blog post

Grizzlies GM Chris Wallace admitted he got the idea to sign free agent Gilbert Arenas after reading a blog post on a Grizzlies fan site.

“[The idea] came up a couple weeks ago and we gradually worked towards it,” Wallace said on The Chris Vernon Show.

Host Chris Vernon pressed Wallace about the issue, and the GM caved.

“I’m going to admit this, I’m going to come clean. I’ll be honest about it, okay? … I’m in the office of [President of Business Operations] Greg Campbell, he says, ‘You outta read this thing that’s on a blog today.’ And I don’t read the blogs, but this guy wrote this case for Gilbert Arenas, and I read the thing and said ‘Greg, you know something? This guy makes some sense.’

“I thought about it and said, you know, we gotta look into it a little further.

“So I called his agent up. I’m willing to admit it — I pride myself on being open-minded — and you look at the finances involved, and the group of players involved, and why not?”

Wallace said he didn’t even know what blog it was or who wrote the post. The honesty from Wallace gave Vernon a hearty laugh, but the GM justified the move.

“I don’t see this as a gamble. It’s a very nominal investment, and he has every incentive to make this work,” Wallace said of Arenas.

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Gilbert Arenas reportedly will sign with Memphis Grizzlies

Gilbert Arenas worked out for the Grizzlies Monday and is reportedly preparing to sign with the team. The Memphis Commercial Appeal says Arenas appeared slender and shot the ball well in his workout. They say he is taking a physical and that he will likely sign as long as he is cleared.

Arenas would be signed to a contract for the veteran’s minimum and could join the team for its Thursday game at Portland.

Gilbert is 30 years old, recovering from knee issues, and underwent a plasma therapy treatment to improve his knees. He hasn’t played pro basketball since ending last season with the Magic. He admitted in a recent interview that his mind wasn’t right with Orlando, so Memphis is hoping that he’ll be in a proper frame of mind.

The Grizzlies are 25-18, fifth in the Western Conference standings and probably figure they need to make a move to compete with some of the teams ahead of them. It’s a risky play for Memphis given how ineffective Arenas has been lately, and how much of a distraction he can be. I really hope he signs and that this works out well for both sides.

Gilbert Arenas doesn’t want gun incident to define him, doesn’t think it should

Gilbert Arenas’ rise and fall is one of the saddest stories we’ve covered at LBS. Back when the site began in 2007, Gil was around the peak of his popularity and one of the personalities that drove the site. He was the first professional athlete to embrace new media and his NBA.com blog was immensely popular. He talked wildly, made boastful predictions, and he made the NBA fun.

Arenas hurt his knee at the end of the ’06-’07 season, re-injured it trying to come back too quickly, and then missed almost the entire season after having his third knee surgery in two years. The knee surgeries took away his quickness, which was his greatest asset as a player. When he did come back, he played 32 games before getting busted for bringing guns into the Wizards’ locker room and ended up suspended the rest of the season. Gil went from being one of the most beloved players in the league to one of the most notorious.

In a lengthy interview with SI’s Sam Amick, Gil said he doesn’t want the gun incident to define him, and he doesn’t think it should.

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