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Lance Stephenson

Lance Stephenson has?left the Indiana Pacers, the only NBA team he has ever known, and agreed to a three-year, $27.4-million deal with the Charlotte Hornets, his agent confirmed to SNY.tv by phone Wednesday morning.

"It's basically a done deal," Alberto Ebanks said.

The Pacers initially offered the 23-year-old former Brooklyn Lincoln star a five-year deal worth $44 million but Stephenson balked, and the Dallas Mavericks had a two-year deal worth $20 million on the table before they?signed Chandler Parsons.

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Lance Stephenson turned down a five-year, $44 million offer from the Indiana Pacers, and the Charlotte Hornets,?Chicago Bulls and Los Angeles Lakers are all interested, according to a report from ESPN's Chris Broussard.

"It's gonna be interesting," a league source told SNY.tv.

"I felt all along that someone's gonna come in and make a bigger offer. I thought Charlotte could come with $12 million a year because [Michael] Jordan's got a taste of winning and he said he wanted to upgrade the two guard position over [Gerald] Henderson and so I thought that was a viable option.

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One day after Larry Bird said he wants Lance Stephenson back with the Indiana Pacers, Stephenson's agent told SNY.tv the two sides hope "to get a deal done."

"They are a quality organization from the top down," Alberto Ebanks told SNY.tv of the Pacers. "We are going to try to get a deal done. The communication has been there for the last four years with the Pacers and it has been beneficial for the Pacers and for Lance. I hope we can come to terms."

Ebanks told SNY.tv on Saturday that there would be "no shortage" of suitors for Stephenson, and reiterated Tuesday?he plans to speak with other interested clubs.

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Despite a wave of criticism about Lance Stephenson's antics during the Eastern Conference Finals, his agent told SNY.tv?there will be "no shortage" of suitors for Stephenson this summer when he becomes an unrestricted free agent.

"He wants to make the commitment to himself and to his club -- whatever club that is -- to be the best person and teammate he can possibly be," Alberto Ebanks, Stephenson's agent, told SNY.tv by phone Saturday morning. "He is a work in progress."

After making headlines in a Game 5 Pacers' win by blowing into LeBron James's ear, Stephenson drew James's ire in Game 6 by touching James on the face, causing an angry James to verbally chastise?Stephenson.

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?By ADAM ZAGORIA & JOSH NEWMAN

NEW YORK -- Lance Stephenson?responded to being snubbed for the ?All-Star Game with his fourth-triple double of the season, twice as many as anyone else in the NBA.

Stephenson went for 14 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists in a 102-94 home loss to the Phoenix Suns.

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By JOSH NEWMAN Special to ZAGSBLOG

NEW YORK -?With Danny Granger playing only five games for the Indiana Pacers last season thanks to patellar tendinosis,?Lance Stephenson slid into his starting spot and the former Brooklyn Lincoln High School star played well, averaging 8.8 points and 3.9 rebounds in 78 games.

That was an encouraging season for Stephenson, who hadn't produced much in 54 games over his first two seasons following one season at the University of Cincinnati.

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The Nets (9-18) lost to the Indiana Pacers (23-5) tonight by a score of 103-86.

The Least You Should Know

[sny-box] The Nets were able to keep this game close in the first half ? trailing by only six at the break ? despite shooting only 35 percent from the field. But the Pacers took control in the third quarter, outscoring Brooklyn 30-19, en route to an easy victory.

Tags: andray blatche, brook lopez, Brooklyn, Brooklyn Nets, danny granger, deron williams, indiana pacers, Jason Kidd, joe johnson, kevin garnett, kidd, lance stephenson, lopez, Nets, nets, nets pacers, pacers, paul geprge, paul pierce, roy hibbert
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By MOKE HAMILTON

Special to ZAGSBLOG

NEW YORK ? Lance Stephenson returned home to Brooklyn Saturday night, but ultimately the man known as "Born Ready" wants to remain in Indiana.

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The Knicks skipped Lance Stephenson in the 2010 NBA Draft, not once but twice.

And on Saturday night, the Brooklyn native finally got a measure of revenge.

Three years after then-Knicks and current Pacers President Donnie Walsh opted to take Andy Rautins?and Landry Fields?in the second round of the 2010 Draft ahead of Stephenson, he went off for a playoff career-high 25 points and 10 rebounds to help the Pacers oust the Knicks from the Eastern Conference semifinals, 106-99, in Game 6 in Indiana.

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By JOSH NEWMAN Special to ZAGSBLOG

NEW YORK - Still just 22 years old, it has taken Indiana Pacers guard Lance Stephenson a little while to get acclimated to the NBA, but this, his third year in the league has been a bit of a revelation. The former Lincoln High School star, born and bred in the Coney Island section of Brooklyn, has matured to the point where his head coach has certainly taken notice.

"I just talked to him about his family, he's got his mind in the right place," New Jersey native Frank Vogel said Sunday before Stephenson scored 11 points to go along with 13 rebounds as the Pacers beat the Knicks, 102-95, in Game 1 of their best-of-seven Eastern Conference Semifinals series. "He told everybody 'no' for tickets so it wouldn't be a distraction."

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NEW YORK -- Lance Stephenson left his lasting impression on the Knicks Sunday afternoon in the form of seven stitches on the right side of Jason Kidd's shaved head.

During the first quarter of the Knicks' 88-76 victory over the Pacers at Madison Square Garden, the former ?Lincoln High School star raced out to the wing to defend Kidd's pump fake and ended up banging a tooth on the veteran's dome.

"His teeth met my head and I got stitches," said Kidd, who made three foul shots before departing the game with 8:48 left in the first period to get stitches. Kidd then returned in the second period wearing a crooked white headband that covered the injury.

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UPDATED 7:06 p.m.:

Miami Heat center Dexter Pittman has been suspended three games without pay for striking the neck and shoulders of Indiana guard Lance Stephenson, and Miami forward Udonis Haslem has been suspended one game without pay for striking the head and shoulders of Indiana?s Tyler Hansbrough, it was announced today by Stu Jackson, NBA Executive Vice President, Basketball Operations.

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'Born Ready' is heading overseas.

Indiana Pacers guard Lance Stephenson will play in either China or Italy during the NBA lockout, according to his agent.

"We're working on a couple things and we've narrowed it down to Italy and China for now," Alberto Ebanks told SNY.tv by phone. "He's excited about just getting a run going while the lockout is in place. I think it's important to stay in basketball shape so he's about to bust a move."

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NEW YORK -- Lance Stephenson might as well get a cot and move into Madison Square Garden this weekend.

"Born Ready" was courtside Saturday night to watch his old friend Kemba Walker and the UConn Huskies beat Louisville, 69-66, for the Big East championship.

The Brooklyn native will be right back at the Garden on Sunday at 1 p.m. to watch his alma mater, Lincoln High School, take on Boys & Girls for the PSAL championship.

Tags: Articles, Lance Stephenson, Lincoln High School, Old Knicks, Adam Zagoria
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"Born Ready" finally got into a game.

Lance Stephenson logged his first NBA minutes Sunday, notching two points, a rebound, and two assists in the Indiana Pacers' 110-108 overtime loss to the Phoenix Suns.

According to the Indianapolis Star, Lance Stephenson Sr. threw confetti into the air after his son made each of his two free throws.

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NEW YORK -- The Indiana Pacers' coaching change could spell good news for Brooklyn's Lance Stephenson.

And Roy Hibbert, Tyler Hansbrough and Paul George, too.

"I think a lot of times the young guys are going to be the ones that help you win the most," Pacers interim coach Frank Vogel said Sunday, according to the Indy Star. "I can't play all 15 guys. That's one of the challenges of being a head coach.

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By MIKE VORKUNOV

NEW YORK -- The Lance Stephenson who made his name at Madison Square Garden and the one?who arrived there Sunday are not one and the same.?

The former saw his place in New York City prep lore crystallized with four straight?PSAL championships while at Abraham Lincoln High School in Brooklyn. The latter can?t get himself off of the inactive list for the Indiana Pacers.

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"Born Ready" apparently isn't ready for the NBA just yet.

During his storied career at Lincoln High School, Lance Stephenson, nicknamed "Born Ready," enjoyed some of his brightest moments under the lights at Madison Square Garden.

The all-time leading scorer in New York State history, Stephenson led Lincoln to four Public Schools Athletic League titles in the famed arena.

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Lance Stephenson will have to wait for his day in court.

The Pacers rookie guard appeared in Brooklyn Criminal Court Tuesday morning because he is accused of pushing his girlfriend, Jasmine Williams, down a flight of stairs, but the court date was pushed back to Feb. 25, 2011.

?Nothing of any consequence in court,? texted Alberto Ebanks, his attorney. ?New date, that?s all.?

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Lance Stephenson's attorney, Alberto Ebanks, just texted me this statement on behalf of his client.

"The allegations against Lance Stephenson Jr. are very serious. Mr. Stephenson did not maliciously, intentionally or in any other way cause harm to Jasmine Williams.

"Everyone, especially Lance, regrets that this incident occurred. We look forward to addressing these charges in the appropriate venue."

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Lance Stephenson is in trouble again.

At 5:05 Sunday morning Coney Island police responded to an assault charge at 621 Avenue Z, according to the police report. Upon the arrival of police, they discovered Stephenson's girlfriend, Jasmine Williams, who stated that her boyfriend, the 19-year-old rookie guard with the Indiana Pacers, pushed her down a flight of stairs, striking her head against the wall. She was transported to Lutheran Hospital in stable condition.

Stephenson, the No. 40 pick in this year's NBA Draft, was taken into custody at the scene and charged with assault, attempted assault, harassment, menacing and criminal possession of a weapon.

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The Indiana Pacers signed second-round draft pick Lance Stephenson to a multi-year deal Thursday.

The deal includes two years guaranteed and two years at a team option, a Pacers source said.

Stephenson will earn over $700,000 the first year and over $800,000 the second. Incentives could bump up that up $100,000 annually.

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The Indiana Pacers are trying to find out if Brooklyn's Lance Stephenson can run the point for them.

So far, so good.

The 6-foot-5 rookie out of Cincinnati scored 21 points, adding four rebounds and three assists, to spark the Pacers to an 86-77 victory over the host Magic Monday in the Orlando Pro Summer League.

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NEW YORK -- If Lance Stephenson is 'Born Ready' for the NBA, he'll have to prove it in Indiana, not New York.

The Knicks opted not to select the 6-foot-5, 220-pound Stephenson with the No. 38 and 39 picks in the second round of the NBA Draft, and the Pacers then grabbed him at No. 40.

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GREENBURGH, N.Y. -- Wearing a gray Knicks warmup jersey and his "Born Ready" tattoo on his right arm, Lance Stephenson pronounced himself ready to play in the NBA.

"That name is the definition of me. I'm 'Born Ready' for any competition, anything on the next-level stage, or any stage. So I like that name and I'm going to live up to it," the 6-foot-5, 220-pound Stephenson said Saturday after working out at the Knicks' Westchester campus.

Tags: Lance Stephenson, NBA Draft, New Jersey Nets, Old Knicks, Adam Zagoria
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Lance Stephenson has won more championships in Madison Square Garden in the last five years than the Knicks have in their entire history.

Yes, those were PSAL high school titles at Lincoln High School, but there is no denying Stephenson's comfort factor in the World's Most Famous Arena.

The Brooklyn native nicknamed "Born Ready" could end up playing professionally in the Garden if things fall a certain way.

Tags: Cincinnati, Lance Stephenson, New Jersey Nets, Old Knicks, Adam Zagoria
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LeBron James may not have decided where he will play his ball beginning next year, but he has apparently decided to endorse Tom Izzo as the next coach of the Cleveland Cavaliers.

Citing "a high-level source," the Cleveland Plain-Dealer said James would endorse the hiring of the Michigan State coach "100 percent."

According to the story, Izzo told several Michigan-based reporters via text messages Sunday that he was "still gathering" information about the Cavs' offer.

Tags: Coaching moves, Lance Stephenson, LeBron James, NBA Draft, New Jersey Nets, Adam Zagoria
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Andrew Moore has been working with Lance Stephenson every day for five weeks at the Impact Basketball Academy in Las Vegas.

And Moore says Stephenson is making great strides toward playing in the NBA.

"I think somebody's going to like him. He's an ultimate competitor," Moore, a coach at Impact Basketball who has worked with Kevin Garnett, Danny Granger, Corey Maggette, Baron Davis and Al Harrington, said Monday by phone.

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NEW YORK -- After initially saying he would remain at Cincinnati for his sophomore season, Brooklyn's Lance Stephenson has decided to go the one-and-done route, SNY.tv has exclusively learned.

The 6-foot-5 guard will submit his paperwork to the NBA and plans to enter the June NBA Draft.

"I have decided to withdraw from the University of Cincinnati and? enter my name into this year's NBA draft," Stephenson said. "After carefully reviewing my options, it is now clear to me that the need to emotionally and financially support my family, especially my young daughter, along with my long-standing and burning passion to play in the NBA, outweighs my desire to return to the University of Cincinnati.

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NEW YORK ? Seton Hall remains alive in the Big East tournament and alive for an NCAA tournament berth.

But they didn?t make it easy on themselves.

The No. 10 Pirates blew a 29-point second-half lead and advanced to the second round of the Big East with a 109-106 victory over No. 15 Providence after Friars freshman Duke Mondy missed a potential game-tying 3-pointer at the buzzer.

Tags: Cincinnati, Lance Stephenson, Providence, Rutgers, Siena, Adam Zagoria
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NEW YORK -- The storylines surrounding UConn coach Jim Calhoun and St. John's coach Norm Roberts were intriguing even before their two teams squared off Tuesday in the Big East tournament at Madison Square Garden.

How close is the aging and ailing Calhoun to the end of his own career? What's left in the cupboard at UConn after this season to motivate him to stay?

Could the embattled Roberts save his job with a late-season run at Madison Square Garden? How far would he have to take the Red Storm in the Big East to do so?

Tags: Big East, Lance Stephenson, St. John's, Syracuse, UConn, Adam Zagoria
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Lance Stephenson will likely return to Cincinnati for his sophomore season instead of declaring for the NBA Draft, the Cincinnati Enquirer reported.

?I think I?m going to stay and keep working,? Stephenson told the newspaper. ?I don?t think I?ve had an NBA season this year so the best choice for me is to stay.?

"Lance really likes it at Cincy," Lance Stephenson Sr. added in a text message. "My wife and I are happy how he's maturing and enjoying the college life. We will support him with any decision he makes."

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Dane Miller has joined some elite company.

By winning his third straight Big East Rookie of the Week honors, Miller? joined Carmelo Anthony as the only conference frosh ever to win three straight such awards.

Anthony did it during the 2002-3 season when he led Syracuse to a national championship.

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The Big East Rookie of the Year race is turning into a photo finish.

Brooklyn's Lance Stephenson of Cincinnati was named the Preseason Rookie of the Year by the coaches and many expected "Born Ready" to run away with the postseason honors.

But Rutgers' freshman forward Dane Miller and Villanova freshman guard Maalik Wayns may have something to say about it.

Tags: Lance Stephenson, Providence, Rutgers, Syracuse, Villanova, Adam Zagoria
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NEW YORK -- Three years ago, I wrote a cover story for Slam magazine on four of the best high school guards in the nation -- Brandon Jennings, Jrue Holiday, Tyreke Evans and Lance Stephenson.

The cover read, "Final 4 - Jennings, Holiday, Evans & Stephenson. Who's the best guard in the country?"

Three years later, three of those four guys are in the NBA and the fourth, Stephenson, likely soon will be.

Tags: Americans in Europe, John Wall, Lance Stephenson, Old Knicks, Adam Zagoria
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Brooklyn?s Lance Stephenson was named the Big East Preseason Rookie of the Year, and Cincinnati coach Mick Cronin says Stephenson is on track to win that award.

The 6-foot-5 Stephenson, New York State?s all-time leading scorer, is averaging a team-best 12.2 points and 4.8 rebounds for the Bearcats (13-7, 4-4 Big East).

?He?s had a good year,? Cronin said. ?I think for a freshman he?s had a great year. You can?t compare people to John Wall or Michael Beasley but Lance has had a very good year. I?d probably say if the voting were taken right now he?d probably be Freshman of the Year in the Big East. You can?t live up to ridiculous expectations that other people set forth for you.?

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NEW YORK --?Lance Stephenson's return to Madison Square Garden began with a chorus of boos and ended with a disastrous turnover in the final seconds that led to two game-winning foul shots by St. John's guard Dwight Hardy.

With Cincinnati and St. John's tied at 50 with 7.6 seconds remaining, Stephenson tried an in-bounds pass to teammate Deonta Vaughn under the Cincinnati basket.

But Hardy alertly cut in front of Vaughn, stole the ball and was fouled by Dion Dixon.

Tags: Cincinnati, Lance Stephenson, Rutgers, St. John's, Syracuse, Adam Zagoria
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Lance Stephenson won a record four Public Schools Athletic League titles with Lincoln High School and experienced his greatest triumphs at Madison Square Garden.

Yet when he returns to the Garden Wednesday for the first time as a collegian to face St. John's (10-5, 0-3 Big East), he doesn't expect a friendly response.

"Yeah, of course. Everyone wanted me to go somewhere close to home so I think they're gonna boo me much harder than Rutgers did," Stephenson, a 6-foot-5, 220-pound freshman from Brooklyn who plays for Cincinnati (11-5, 2-2), said Monday on a conference call. "It makes me play harder."

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Seton Hall has already faced several of the top players in this year's Big East.

Wesley Johnson of Syracuse, Da'Sean Butler and Devin Ebanks of West Virginia and Jerome Dyson and Stanley Robinson of UConn have all played -- and beaten -- the Pirates this season.

Now here comes Cincinnati and Lance Stephenson, the Big East Preseason Rookie of the Year who is averaging a team-best 12.5 points to go with 4.8 rebounds.

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PISCATAWAY, N.J. -- After Cincinnati beat Rutgers 65-58 Saturday night, Lance Stephenson wore a Yankees cap and a smile as he walked diagonally across the Rutgers Athletic Center floor.
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He had one thought on his mind. He wanted to see his daughter.
In addition to being a heralded freshman basketball player at Cincinnati, Stephenson is also the proud father of a 2-year-old girl named Liara.
"My daughter's played a big role in my life," Stephenson said after scoring 10 points and grabbing 6 rebounds in the victory. "Ever since she came I've just been real focused. I take everything more serious. I'm just more mature. Having a daughter made me take everything serious and be a good father."
(Photo courtesy Neil Miller)

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Today marks one of the biggest days in college hoops in a long time, with a full slate of?critical games, none?more interesting?than the Louisville-Kentucky tilt that features a battle between old rivals?Rick Pitino and John Calipari.

Here's a column from Rick Bozich on the relationship between the two coaches.

After his admissions of marital infidelity and a pending trial, Pitino?is sure to get an earful from the UK faithful and it should be something to watch (3:30, CBS).

Tags: Cincinnati, Fordham, Kentucky, Lance Stephenson, Louisville, Paterson Catholic, Rutgers, South Florida, Temple, Adam Zagoria
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Here's?an interview with Cincinnati freshman Lance Stephenson from Fox 19 in which he says his two goals for the year are to get a 3.0 GPA and to make the NCAA Tournament. He says he's already checked off the first goal and is working on the second.

Lance and the Bearcats play three of their next five games in the New York metropolitan area, beginning Saturday at Rutgers. Cincy visits Seton Hall Jan. 9 and St. John's at MSG Jan. 13.

For more on Lance, read what Sebastian Telfair has to say.

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We may have seen Lance Stephenson's official coming out party Wednesday night.

In a nationally televised game against No. 10 UConn, Stephenson hit two free throws with .7 seconds left to give Cincinnati a 71-69 home victory in the Big East opener for both clubs.

A highly touted freshman from Brooklyn, Stephenson dribbled into the lane in the final seconds and was fouled by Gavin Edwards at the buzzer. After a review, the officials put .7 seconds on the clock. Stephenson hit both and finished with 21 points.

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NEW YORK -- Sebastian Telfair and Lance Stephenson have known each other since childhood.
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They both come from the Coney Island section of Brooklyn. They both starred under Dwayne Morton at Lincoln High School. And both became the all-time scoring leaders in New York State history, with Stephenson ultimately breaking Telfair's record last season.
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"He grew up three blocks from me, so I watched him play when he was playing in Pee Wee leagues, so I've known him my whole life," the 6-foot, 175-pound Telfair said last Friday before his Los Angeles Clippers lost to the Knicks at Madison Square Garden.
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Tags: Cincinnati, Lance Stephenson, Adam Zagoria

Syracuse retains the top spot in the second edition of SNY.tv's Big East power rankings, and fellow unbeatens West Virginia and Georgetown round out the top three.
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1. Syracuse (10-0)The Orange remain unbeaten and stay atop the rankings. With Thursday's win over Florida, Syracuse is now 3-0 against top-25 teams with an average margin of victory of 16.7 points. Game to watch: Dec. 29 at Seton Hall
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2. West Virginia (7-0)Head coach Bob Huggins hopes to have Devin Ebanks (hand contusion) and Casey Mitchell (knee) back from injuries in time for Saturday's tilt at Cleveland State.
Game to watch: Dec. 23 Mississippi
MONROE NAMED PLAYER OF WEEK, LANCE EARNS ROOKIE HONORS?
The BIG EAST Conference has named Georgetown center Greg Monroe and Cincinnati guard Lance Stephenson the winners of the conference's weekly men's basketball honors for the week-ending Dec. 13.
Monroe was chosen as BIG EAST Player of the Week after he led the Hoyas to a pair of wins against ranked opponents. The sophomore began his week with career highs of 24 points and 15 rebounds in a 72-65 win over No. 20/22 Butler. On Saturday, Monroe posted 15 points, seven rebounds, three assists and three steals in a 74-66 victory over No. 17/16 Washington.
Stephenson, the BIG EAST Rookie of the Week, earns rookie honors for the second time this season after leading the Bearcats in scoring in games against local foes Miami (Ohio) and Xavier. He scored 11 points in a 63-59 win over the RedHawks. In an 83-79 double-overtime loss at Xavier, Stephenson scored a collegiate-high 22 points and grabbed six boards. ?
BIG EAST Player of the WeekGREG MONROE, Georgetown, C, So.?BIG EAST Rookie of the WeekLANCE STEPHENSON, Cincinnati, G, Fr.

BIG EAST Honor Roll

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How about this line for Lance Stephenson in Cincinnati's 63-59 win over Miami (Ohio) at the US Bank Arena: career-high 17 points, 8 rebounds, 3 assists, 3 steals, 2 turnovers.

Unfortunately he needed two stitches above his left eye after getting elbowed late in the game.

?Think Lance is turning the corner?

Tags: Big East, Cincinnati, Lance Stephenson, Syracuse, Adam Zagoria
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The Big East improved to 51-4 on the young season after Cincinnati downed No. 24 Vanderbilt 67-58 in the Maui Invitational.

Seven Big East teams are ranked in the latest AP poll, including Syracuse, which was unranked a week ago but vaulted to No. 10 -- with one first-place vote -- in the latest poll?after routing defending NCAA champ North Carolina last?Friday at MSG.

Cincinnati, which next plays the Maryland-Chaminade winner, could move into the polls with a strong week in Maui.

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Lance Stephenson will play his first nationally televised game as a college freshman today when Cincinnati meets Vanderbilt in the Maui Invitational at 5:30 on ESPN2.

The 6-foot-6 Stephenson is averaging 11.5 points and 3.5 rebounds for the Bearcats (2-0). After a rough first game in which he scored just 7 points and was called a "nervous wreck" by Bearcats coach Mick Cronin, Stephenson scored 16 points on 6-for-13 shooting in last week's 92-68 win over Toledo.

Speaking of Stephenson, the Daily News had a good feature on Sunday on Lincoln coach Dwayne "Tiny" Morton and addresses several Stephenson-related issues.

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