In a series of tweets, Steve Kyler of Basketball Insiders says there was more to the Thunder‘s decision to trade James Harden before last season than money concerns. Coming off their Finals loss, Harden wanted an increased role on the team, believing himself to be the superstar talent we now know he is. Kyler says Harden wanted to stay, but the Thunder didn’t want to change their roster dynamics to accommodate his wishes. Here’s more from around the league:
- Jason Collins is happy stay with the Nets for the rest of the season, he tells Roderick Boone of Newsday. “Thank you to the Nets organization, coaches and players,” Collins said.“Our team is playing really well right now and I’m glad to continue to be here.”
- The Spurs have assigned Austin Daye to their D-League affiliate per a team release.
- After showing promise in some extended playing time with the Raptors, Ed Davis has struggled to see many minutes with the Grizzlies, writes Ryan Wolstat of The Toronto Sun. The lack of playing time has come because of a crowded frontcourt in Memphis, not a lack of skill on Davis’s part, says coach Dave Joerger. “It’s tough and he’s a similar style to the guys that are at that position,” said Joerger. “What his athleticism is, is a different look for us. But it’s tough with Marc [Gasol] and Zach [Randolph] in front of him.”
- Derrick Williams has been debated as a “true” small forward or power forward since coming into the league, but Kings coach Michael Malone tells Jason Jones of The Sacramento Bee that Williams’ versatility is a good thing. “You go back to his days at Arizona, when he was the No. 2 pick, he played a lot of four (power forward),” Malone said. “I see in the NBA if a bigger guy is guarding him, he can take that guy out on the perimeter. If you play him at the small forward, you can post him up some. He’s got that versatility and athleticism that is very attractive. The league is getting a lot smaller it seems, and I think Derrick’s versatility is a real advantage when you play him at the four.” If small forward Rudy Gay picks up his $19.3MM player option in Sacramento for next season, Williams will likely have to establish his ability to thrive at the power forward spot.