Lakers coach Mike D’Antoni says the way he emphasized Dwight Howard over Pau Gasol in his offense last season “wasn’t fair” to the Spaniard, admitting that “if nobody had names on their jerseys,” the situation would have been different, as USA Today’s Sam Amick observes.
“It was hard to be in that position,” said Gasol, a free agent at season’s end. “I understood the politics of it, and why things were a certain way, but it didn’t make it any easier during the process. But you learn and move on and you grow, and you go to the next chapter. I’m excited about my new position. It’s a different situation, a different team. I’m happy and proud to continue to be here, despite everything. I’m ready to play and have a great year.”
That year is just about to start, with the first games of the 2013/14 season just hours away. Here’s the latest from around the Association:
- Jazz CEO Greg Miller, coach Tyrone Corbin, and Derrick Favors all conveyed hopes today that Gordon Hayward remains in Utah long-term, a sentiment Hayward himself echoes. Jody Genessy of The Deseret News has the details as Thursday’s deadline for Hayward to sign an extension looms.
- The Timberwolves aren’t among the teams interested in Shannon Brown, whom the Wizards waived today, according to Darren Wolfson of 1500 ESPN Twin Cities (Twitter link).
- The Wolves announced a deal for renovations to the Target Center today, but Bucks owner Herb Kohl says the NBA prefers there be a new arena in Milwaukee rather than a renovation to the Bucks’ existing home, notes Charles F. Gardner of the Journal Sentinel.
- Former Grizzlies coach Lionel Hollins has changed agents, signing with Steve Kauffman of Kauffman Sports Management Group, tweets Ramona Shelburne of ESPNLosAngeles.com. Warren LeGarie had previously represented Hollins.
- The Bulls signed Kalin Lucas and Patrick Christopher in September and waived them on the second day of training camp. The maneuver allowed Chicago to sign their other camp invitees to summer contracts that gave the team an out in case they suffered an injury, as Mark Deeks of ShamSports explains in a piece for HoopsWorld.