Atlantic Notes: Sampson, Embiid, Olynyk

Sixers coach Brett Brown would like for the team to re-sign JaKarr Sampson, whom Philadelphia waived Thursday to accommodate its three-way trade with the Pistons and Rockets, but the coach isn’t confident that Sampson will clear waivers, notes Jessica Camerato of CSN Philly (Twitter link). That jibes with a report from Keith Pompey of the Philadelphia Inquirer, who heard from a source that the Sixers want to re-sign the small forward. GM Sam Hinkie referred to a new deal with Sampson as a possibility but also acknowledged the chance that another team claims him, as Tom Moore of Calkins Media relays (on Twitter).

Here’s more from the Atlantic Division:

  • The Knicks failed to upgrade their roster at this year’s trade deadline and one major reason for the franchise standing pat was team president Phil Jackson‘s refusal to part with New York’s 2018 first round pick in order to facilitate a trade, Stefan Bondy of The New York Daily News relays.
  • The amount of time and resources that the Sixers have devoted to Joel Embiid‘s health and recovery demonstrate how important the young center is to the organization’s future plans, Brian Seltzer of NBA.com writes. “We’re obviously excited about him, and have always been excited about him, because he has rare gifts and he has a real chance to have a fantastic NBA career,” said Hinkie of Embiid.  “He’s doing great on all of the things that matter for him, which is, how do you focus on every day to try and get better? We expect maybe in the last several weeks of the season, he might be more fully integrated into the team and traveling with the team and at all of our games and the like.  Then, he’ll have a long summer in front of him where his rehab will continue.  So far, so good.  He’s done a great job.  He’s been super professional.”
  • The Raptors will keep an eye on the waiver wire for roster upgrades but the team isn’t expected to make a move, Josh Lewenberg of TSN.ca relays (via Twitter). Toronto was reportedly looking to upgrade its power forward spot leading up to Thursday’s trade deadline.
  • Celtics center Kelly Olynyk could be out of action for up to a month as he deals with an injured right shoulder, A. Sherrod Blakely of CSNNE.com relays. “It’s a little bit of separation, maybe,” Olynyk said regarding his shoulder. “Rest, recovery, treatments … it should be all right.” The big man was originally projected to miss two weeks with the malady, Blakely notes.

Chuck Myron contributed to this post.

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