NBA.com is reporting the Denver Nuggets have assigned rookies Jordan Hamilton and Julyan Stone to the NBA Development League’s Idaho Stampede. Although this comes as a bit of a surprise to Nuggets’ fans, it should be noted this move has come in unison with other NBA teams — including the Rockets with Marcus Morris — doing the exact same thing just in time for the annual D-League Showcase on Jan. 9.
The Denver Nuggets NBA Development League affiliate Idaho Stampede will hold open tryouts in Denver on Sunday, September 19 starting at 9:00 AM and lasting until 5:00 PM at Colorado Christian University. There will be two other sessions, one in Portland on October 2 and another in Boise on October 16. Visit the official site of the Stampede for registration information and other details.
New Head Coach Randy Livingston will be on 104.3 The Fan today (September 15) at 2:00 PM (all times approximate in the radio business). Livingston is best known as being an NBA journeyman, but was in his younger years one of the top NBA prospects in the country. After his first two games at LSU he was averaging video game numbers in the vicinity of 30 points and 15 assists a game. Knee injuries would prove to limit his potential although Livingston was still able to carve out a very respectable NBA career, but he made his mark in the D-League.
Livingston holds several franchise records and his jersey is retired in Boise as he was the 2006-07 D-League MVP and lead the Stampede to the 2008 D-League championship. As a coach he has had first hand experience working with the Boston Celtics front office as an assistant with their affiliate and while his playing career may not have reached the heights that many expected when Livingston was exiting high school, he sees his winding career path as a positive entering his first season as a head coach.
Some of you may remember the Nuggets held open tryouts under Kiki Vandeweghe where guys like this wasted everyone’s time.
A couple of players received invites to train with Denver’s summer league squad, but if memory serves neither one actually made it to the Rocky Mountain Revue with the team. Hopefully the Stampede will have more luck.
With their previous D-League team, the Colorado 14ers, not operating next season as they move to Texas the Denver Nuggets were temporarily without a D-League affiliate. Fret no longer Nuggets fans, the NBA has just announced the Nuggets will be affiliated with the Idaho Stampede.
The Nuggets and the Stampede have seen their paths cross before. When Kiki Vandeweghe drafted the unknown Ricky Sanchez in 2005 he was sent to Idaho to try to learn to play basketball. Ricky never did sign with the Nuggets, or any other NBA team for that matter. When the Nuggets hired George Karl he was a part owner of the Stampede and was forced to sell his share of the team in order to coach Denver.
I would be surprised if the Nuggets utilize the Stampede next season, but it is certainly possible that Sonny Weems spends some time there if the Nuggets determine he is not yet ready to contribute.
The Nuggets will be sharing the 14ers with the Portland Trail Blazers.
The other NBA team who was affiliated with the 14ers was the New Jersey Nets and they have been partnered up with the new and as of yet unnamed Springfield, MA team.