Former Bulls MVP Derrick Rose has begun practicing with the team in non-contract drills, coach Tom Thibodeau told reporters including K.C. Johnson of The Chicago Tribune. His progress puts him on track to participate in USA Basketball’s July minicamp, but doesn’t change his status as out for the season. Here’s more from the East:
- Hawks coach Mike Budenholzer told Andy Greder of Pioneer Press that frontcourt injuries spurred Atlanta to bring rookie Mike Muscala over from Europe sooner than planned, but the coach added that the big man is in their long term plans. “It is because of the injuries, but it’s also because he is somebody that we really think has a future with us,” said Budenholzer. “He is a smart player and he is picking things up quickly.” After selecting Muscala in the second round of the 2013 draft, the Hawks signed him mid-season to a four-year contract that isn’t fully guaranteed beyond 2013/14.
- The Sixers‘ Thaddeus Young would have embraced a trade to the Spurs, had rumors along those lines come to fruition at the deadline, he tells Jabari Young of The San Antonio Express-News. “You know, it’s a great opportunity … I want to play for a winning team, I want to win a championship. At the end day, right now, the trade deadline is over and I’m just trying to develop guys and rebuild the culture,” said Young, who sounded open to the possibility of joining the Spurs in the future. “It can happen. Like I said, I can play with anybody.”
- Toure’ Murry is living his dream, telling Jessica Camerato of Basketball Insiders that time spent in Summer League, overseas, and the D-League have all been worth it now that he has a spot at the end of the Knicks bench. “Everybody’s dream is to get to the NBA. It just makes me feel great to say I play in the NBA and (my family and peers are) basically living their dream through me,” Murry said. “It’s kind of like a real story when I look back on it. It just shows you never give up, never get sidetracked because there’s a lot of things that can do that, and just know you can do it if you have a strong mental state and always believe in yourself. Even when you’re short, you’re skinny, always believe in yourself.”