Ryan Anderson is strongly considering a change of scenery this summer when he becomes an unrestricted free agent, which makes the Pelicans‘ decision not to trade him prior to this season’s deadline puzzling, Alex Kennedy of Basketball Insiders writes. Sources tell Kennedy that Anderson seems to be leaning toward signing with a team other than New Orleans. Teams expressing interest in Anderson leading up to the deadline included the Wizards, Pistons, Cavaliers, Clippers, Kings and Suns, Kennedy notes. It’s unclear just how many of those teams will pursue Anderson this summer, with Washington acquiring Markieff Morris, Detroit landing Tobias Harris, Channing Frye ending up in Cleveland and Jeff Green now a member of the Clippers as a result of various deadline trades.
The 27-year-old says he hasn’t discussed his pending free agency with the team yet, Kennedy notes. ”No conversations at all about it,” Anderson told reporters. ”Obviously I think they are in the same boat, so many things can happen they may have multiple pieces they are thinking about. A lot of stuff that I don’t know about obviously that they talk about behind closed doors. So I haven’t communicated at all with them.”
Here’s more from around the league:
- Mavericks swingman Wesley Matthews scoffs at the notion that the Dallas roster is devoid of talent and places the blame for the team’s struggles this season on porous defense, Tim MacMahon of ESPNDallas.com relays (ESPN Now link). “A talent problem? No, we don’t have a talent problem,” Matthews told MacMahon. “If we don’t have a talent problem, then what’s the problem? We’re giving up too many points in transition. I just said it. I mean, you guys can pick apart our team all you want. We’ve got talent on this team. So y’all can miss me with that.“
- Kentucky freshman center Skal Labissiere has played his way back into the lottery in the latest mock draft from Jonathan Givony of Draft Express. The young big man is currently projected to go 10th after plummeting toward the bottom of the first round in Givony’s previous projection. Labissiere is averaging 6.8 points and 3.2 rebounds on the season, and while he’s picked up his play as of late, scouts remain skeptical and want to see how well he performs in postseason tournaments before making their final judgments, Adam Zagoria of SNY.tv relays.
- One reason for the Trail Blazers‘ surprise success this season is that the players have fully embraced coach Terry Stotts and his combination of compassion, toughness and basketball IQ, Jason Quick of CSNNW.com writes.
- Small forward Sampson Carter, who was with the Grizzlies during the preseason, has signed with the Mexican club Caballeros de Culiacan, the team announced (translation via Orazio Cauchi of Sportando).