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Pacific Rumors: Thornton, Lakers, Bogut

Marcus Thornton has not improved his free agent outlook since he was dealt to the Suns at the trade deadline, Paul Coro of The Arizona Republic reports. The Suns only acquired Thornton to facilitate the Isaiah Thomas trade to the Celtics, which allowed them to acquire the Cavaliers’ 2016 first-round pick in the multi-team deal, Coro explains. Thornton, who becomes an unrestricted free agent after the season, has only appeared in nine games since the deal and has been battling a left Achilles’ tendon injury, Coro adds. That has rendered Thornton as a non-rotation player on a non-playoff team, which is not the best way to head into the free agent market, Coro points out.

In other news around the Pacific Division:

  • Wesley Matthews, Omer Asik and Khris Middleton are some of the free agents that the Lakers should consider pursuing this summer, Jesse Blancarte of Basketball Insiders opines. The Lakers should target free agents like Matthews and Asik that still have several productive years remaining and could be signed at a reasonable price, as well as budding talents like Middleton, Blancarte continues. What the Lakers should avoid is appeasing Kobe Bryant by signing quick-fix, high-priced free agents like Rajon Rondo, since the Lakers are a long way from contention, Blancarte adds. The club also needs to re-think its offensive strategy and embrace the 3-point shot by bringing in some long-range shooters that can space the floor, Blancarte argues.
  • Andrew Bogut‘s gamble when he signed an incentive-laden, three-year extension prior to last season is paying off, Antonio Gonzalez of the Associated Press writes. The Warriors center will play his 65th game of the season Saturday night, fulfilling one of the requirements for a potential bonus. Bogut’s deal calls for him to earn a 15% bonus — or approximately $1.93MM this year — any season he plays at least 65 games and is named to the NBA’s First or Second All-Defensive Team, Gonzalez continues. Bogut leads the league in defensive plus-minus rating, Gonzalez adds.
  • James Michael McAdoo was recalled by the Warriors on Saturday after he helped the D-League’s Santa Cruz Warriors win a playoff series over the Oklahoma City Blue, the team’s website reports. McAdoo has appeared in 14 games with Golden State this season, averaging 3.9 points and 2.6 rebounds in 8.6 minutes. He had 25 points and 13 rebounds in Santa Cruz’s clinching win over the Blue on Friday.

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