Ben Wallace Rumors
March 13 at 8:13pm CST By Alex Lee
Citing a source close to the team, ESPN New York's Jared Zwerling reports that the Knicks are considering adding a veteran point guard to supplement Raymond Felton, Jason Kidd and Pablo Prigioni. While injuries have decimated their frontcourt, Zwerling says a lack of free agent options has led the Knicks to consider opting for guard help.
Zwerling indicates that the Knicks are ideally looking for a point guard that has some speed and quickness, in contrast to the wisdom and decision making of the older Kidd and Prigioni. The source points to Delonte West, Sundiata Gaines and Jannero Pargo as options, with West being the most likely. While West has some issues - as evidenced by his absence from the NBA this year - the Saint Joseph's product would join a veteran roster in New York. Meanwhile, all signs point towards Pargo signing a 10-day contract with Charlotte tomorrow. So unless that deal falls through, the Knicks would have to hope the Bobcats let him walk once his contract expires if they want to pursue him.
Two of those veterans are injured big men Amare Stoudemire and Rasheed Wallace, both out for the remainder of the regular season. Zwerling says Mike Woodson remains committed to Wallace, probably making James White the odd man out should the team decide it needs a roster spot.
Should the Knicks decide their need for frontcourt help is too pressing to consider anything else, Zwerling lists Henry Sims, Tony Battie, Josh Boone, Brian Cook, Dan Gadzuric, Troy Murphy, Ben Wallace, Hassan Whiteside and Sean Williams as potential targets. While Sims provides the most intrigue of the bunch, Zwerling says the Knicks would prefer a veteran.
October 1 at 2:15pm CST By Luke Adams
Let's round up a few odds and ends from a busy day around the NBA....
- Blazers coach Terry Stotts told the media today that summer signee Adam Morrison has a "legitimate" chance to make the team, according to Ben Golliver of Blazer's Edge (Twitter link).
- Hedo Turkoglu says he'd like to finish his career with the Magic, tweets Joshua Robbins of the Orlando Sentinel.
- Asked about the Knicks' decision to let Jeremy Lin walk in July, GM Glen Grunwald told the media that the Rockets made a commitment to Lin that New York wasn't prepared to make, and that Raymond Felton was a better fit for the Knicks. Marc Berman of the New York Post has the quotes.
- Manu Ginobili expects to return to the Spurs if he continues playing when his contract expires at season's end, tweets Jeff McDonald of the San Antonio Express-News.
- Jason Lloyd of the Akron Beacon Journal poses five burning questions facing the Cavaliers heading into the 2012/13 season. Among Lloyd's five: Whether Dion Waiters was the right choice in June's draft, and whether Anderson Varejao will finish the year with the Cavs.
- Ben Wallace won't be in camp with the Pistons, since the team doesn't want to put him a position where it may have to cut him, tweets Vincent Goodwill of the Detroit News.
- Appearing on KJR in Seattle, Mavericks owner Mark Cuban said he didn't think any NBA owner would stand in the way of the city of Seattle getting another NBA franchise (link via Sports Radio Interviews).
- Former NBA veteran Jayson Williams tells ESPN.com's Matt Wong that he's healthy and misses the NBA, but stopped short of saying he's interested in making a comeback.
September 9 at 10:55am CST By Chuck Myron
Grant Hill is telling new Clippers teammate Blake Griffin not to rush back from the medial meniscus tear he suffered in his knee over the summer, as Gary Washburn of the Boston Globe writes. Hill reflected on the surgeries that threatened his life and career, and said he'll spread the knowledge he's gained about preserving his body to his new teammates. “Blake’s a great kid, and I said, ‘Look man, take your time. If I learned anything, take your time,’ ” said Hill, who turns 40 on October 5th. “He wants to get back so fast. “I said, ‘I need you in June, I don’t need you in October.’ So he’s a great kid and got a great career ahead of him, and hopefully I can share a little about the highs and the lows and the things that I’ve gone though.’’
Washburn has more on Hill, and toward the end of his lengthy piece that rounds up news from the last week or so, he has a couple of noteworthy tidbits:
- Hill compared the Clippers' rivalry with the Lakers to the dynamic between Duke and North Carolina, and marveled at his own longevity. “To be turning 40 and having teams that are contenders trying to get me to play for them, it is humbling," he said. "It’s a great feeling and I’m glad that I am blessed and fortunate to continue to do it.”
- Washburn says Ben Wallace is looking for a new deal, but if he gets one, it's unlikely to come from the Pistons. Wallace has been waffling about his retirement this summer, and if he returns, it's been widely assumed he would do so with Detroit.
- Scouts were "spooked" by Yi Jianlian's up-and-down performance for China in the Olympics, Washburn hears. They believe the 7'0" free agent lacks a true position and isn't tough enough to play in the paint.
August 24 at 1:47pm CST By Luke Adams
Let's round up a few Friday afternoon odds and ends from around the NBA....
- The Magic will hire former Hornets assistant James Borrego as an assistant coach for the coming year, according to an Associated Press report (link via The Sporting News).
- In a piece for the Detroit Free Press, Patrick Hayes of PistonPowered wonders if it makes sense for the Pistons to clear a roster spot to bring back Ben Wallace. That, of course, assumes that Wallace wants to continue his playing career.
- Former UNC star and NBA lottery pick Rashad McCants failed his physical with French team SIG Strasbourg, as Emiliano Carchia of Sportando writes. Strasbourg was set to sign McCants, but will now take another look at the market for other options.
- Joe Johnson talked to SI.com's Zach Lowe about finding out about being traded to the Nets, the team's expectations for 2012/13, and his contract.
- The Warriors have hired Ellen Warner as the team's VP of Development, according to a team release. Warner will oversee planning, design, and construction of the club's proposed San Francisco arena.
August 17 at 3:26pm CST By Luke Adams
With things relatively quiet on the NBA front these days, we'll keep track of today's international news and rumors right here....
- Undrafted rookie free agent Drew Gordon has signed with Serbia's Partizan Belgrade, according to Sportando. The 6'9" forward out of New Mexico was ranked as this year's 56th-best prospect by ESPN.com's Chad Ford and played for the Mavericks at the Las Vegas Summer League, but won't be heading to camp with an NBA team.
- Former NBA big man Cedric Simmons has signed with Enel Brindisi in Italy, according to Sportando. Simmons played for the Hornets, Cavs, Bulls, and Kings from 2006 to 2009.
- Greek's Panathinaikos reportedly has some interest in Ben Wallace, as Emiliano Carchia of Sportando notes. I imagine it's unlikely anything comes of this, since Wallace is said to be debating between retiring or returning to the Pistons.
- Goran Dragic's brother Zoran Dragic played in the Las Vegas Summer League for the Rockets, but won't be coming to the NBA at this point. As Wendell Maxey writes at Ridiculous Upside, Spanish reports suggest Zoran is close to signing a two-year deal with Unicaja Malaga.
- Ilkan Karaman, who was selected 57th overall by the Nets in the June draft, has officially signed with Fenerbache Ulker Istanbul, the team announced (link via Sportando). Brooklyn will retain the Turkish forward's rights if and when he eventually makes his way over to the NBA.
August 8 at 1:44pm CST By Luke Adams
It wasn't long ago that we heard the Bulls had some interest in signing Tracy McGrady, but that possibility no longer appears realistic. After signing first-round pick Marquis Teague, the Bulls are only about $758K under their hard cap line, meaning a veteran's minimum contract for McGrady wouldn't fit unless the team traded another player. Alex Kennedy of HoopsWorld confirms that the two sides are no longer talking, and says McGrady will continue weighing his options in hopes of joining a contender. Here are a few more updates from Kennedy on some unsigned veterans:
- Kenyon Martin is talking with several teams, and while he doesn't want to sign for the veteran's minimum, he may end up having no choice, says Kennedy.
- Jermaine O'Neal says "winning a championship is the only goal," and would like to join a contending team on a minimum-salary deal. The Lakers, Bucks, and Suns have watched him work out.
- Sources close to Gilbert Arenas say that he's slimmed down and is fully healthy as he searches for an NBA contract.
- Ben Wallace still hasn't made up his mind about whether to retire or return to the Pistons for one more year. A decision is expected within the next few weeks.
- There's no timetable on Josh Howard's free agent decision, but it sounds like he's close to picking a destination. We heard last week that Howard had narrowed his options to five teams.
July 21 at 1:44pm CST By Chuck Myron
Long-tenured NBA veterans Juwan Howard and Ben Wallace are considering whether to come back and play one more season. Howard, who'll turn 40 on February 7th, said he'd prefer to come back with the Heat if he opts against retirement, according to the Associated Press.
"I still have the itch," Howard said. "I still have the passion and the love for the game. More importantly, I still like staying in shape and I can't sit on my behind. I'm still iffy as far as if I want to come back and play or not, but I'll tell you one thing - once I decide, I want to be ready. So I am working out ... ready for whatever happens."
Wallace recently indicated he'd like to return to the Pistons after previously saying he'd retire following last season. He tells WTVR, a Richmond, Va., television station near his home, that he's "50-50" about coming back. The Detroit Free Press says the team would have to make a trade to open a roster spot for Wallace, but that's contingent on the team signing second-round pick Khris Middleton, which is not a given. The Pistons are mulling whether Wallace fits in with their youth movement, but some in the organization would like him around to mentor ninth overall pick Andre Drummond, the Free Press report says.
Wallace averaged 1.4 points and 4.3 rebounds in 15.8 minutes per game last season for the Pistons, cracking the starting lineup 11 times. Howard was an afterthought in Miami, notching 1.5 PPG and 1.7 RPG in just 6.8 MPG in 28 appearances. If either were to play next season, it would almost certainly be on a veteran's minimum deal.
July 19 at 3:18pm CST By Luke Adams
The Spurs have made a handful of signings so far this summer, but every contract agreement they've reached has been for one of their own players -- unrestricted free agents Tim Duncan and Boris Diaw will return, along with restricted free agents Danny Green and Patty Mills. Even the team's one new addition, Nando De Colo, wasn't a free agent, since San Antonio held his NBA rights exclusively. The Spurs are standing relatively pat this offseason, not pursuing outside free agents, and that's just fine with coach Gregg Popovich, as he tells Jeff McDonald of the San Antonio Express-News.
So while the remaining free agents on the market aren't likely to draw a ton of interest from San Antonio, there are plenty of other potential destinations out there. Here's the latest on a few available players:
- The Bulls are eyeing shooting guards such as Marco Belinelli, Randy Foye, Delonte West, and Willie Green, according to Aggrey Sam of CSNChicago.com.
- Despite indicating earlier this year that he intended to retire, Ben Wallace would like to return to the Pistons for the 2012/13 season, says Vincent Goodwill of the Detroit News. The Pistons have a full roster, so they'd have to make a move to clear a spot to sign the unrestricted free agent.
- The Warriors and Bobcats are still pursuing Carl Landry, writes Alex Kennedy of HoopsWorld. Charlotte, which could offer Landry more money, is attempting to work out a sign-and-trade deal with the Hornets.
- A number of teams have expressed interest in Mickael Pietrus, but the Celtics are still "very much in the picture," says A. Sherrod Blakely of CSNNE.com. Jared Zwerling of ESPNNewYork.com adds (via Twitter) that Pietrus has a "huge" offer from an overseas team, but that he wants to play for an NBA contender on more than a minimum-salary deal.
- The Clippers have reached out to Ryan Hollins and Darko Milicic, in hopes of adding a backup big man for the minimum salary, writes Broderick Turner of the Los Angeles Times. Darko's agent Marc Cornstein says playing time will be a bigger factor for his client than money, since the Timberwolves are still sending him pay checks.
- A big-name free agent came off the market yesterday when the Trail Blazers matched Nicolas Batum's offer sheet. As Steve Kyler of HoopsWorld writes, Blazers GM Neil Olshey stressed that reports suggesting Batum didn't want to return to Portland were orchestrated by the Timberwolves and Batum's agent. "Nic never said that," Olshey said. "Let’s be very clear. Nic made a couple of comments at the behest of the Minnesota Timberwolves and his agent. That was their agenda; it was never Nicolas’s agenda."
July 9 at 10:28pm CST By Luke Adams
We're into the home stretch of the July moratorium, and it won't be long before all the moves that have been agreed upon in the last week are made official. In the meantime, teams have two more days to prepare for the next stage of free agency, and the rumors continue to swirl. You can track all of the contract agreements to date using our Free Agent Tracker, and you can follow many of today's free agent rumors right here, with the latest up top....
- There's a "pretty good chance" that Ben Wallace will return to the Pistons next season, a source tells Vincent Goodwill of The Detroit News.
- A source told The Commercial Appeal (via Twitter) that it's unlikely that the Grizzlies will sign Russian guard Alexey Shved. Shved allegedly received offers from the Grizzlies, Cavs, and T'Wolves.
- However, the Grizzlies are working to bring veteran guard Willie Green to Memphis, The Commercial Appeal tweets. The soon-to-be 31-year-old averaged 7.6 PPG last year for the Hawks.
- A source with knowledge of Derek Fisher's free agency situation told Sam Amick of SI (via Twitter) that a return to the Thunder is possible, but the Cavs are the frontrunner at the moment. The Nets and Mavs are also possibilities but the Bulls and Knicks have gone in different directions (Kirk Hinrich and Jason Kidd, respectively).
- Antawn Jamison told David Scott of the Charlotte Observer that he will probably decide "in a week or so" on whether he’ll finish his NBA career with the Bobcats. Aside from the Bobcats and the Warriors, the veteran says he'll probably only consider title contenders.
- Courtney Lee confirmed he's interested in the Celtics, but said they're one of eight teams with interest in him, and added that the money has to be right (Twitter link via Gary Washburn of the Boston Globe).
- Aaron Brooks has yet to talk to anyone but the Rockets, he tells Jonathan Feigen of the Houston Chronicle (Twitter link).
- The Mavericks have talked to Brazilian center Rafael Hettsheimeir, according to Jeff Caplan of ESPNDallas.com. However, while a Portuguese report suggests Dallas has made a contract offer, the Mavs have yet to do so, says Caplan.
- Yi Jianlian is drawing interest from Panathinaikos and other teams overseas, but he remains focused on signing an NBA deal, tweets Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports. Meanwhile, after spending the 2011/12 season in Greece, Joey Dorsey is drawing interest from some NBA teams, tweets Wojnarowski.
- The Mavericks are expected to resume talks with unrestricted free agent point guard Ramon Sessions today, reports Jeff Caplan of ESPNDallas.com.
- Courtney Lee met with the Celtics this weekend and Boston is interested in a sign-and-trade for him, but a number of other teams have Lee on their radar as well. Between ESPN.com's Marc Stein and SI.com's Sam Amick, the following teams are listed as suitors for Lee: The Timberwolves, Hawks, Pacers, Mavericks, Suns, Bulls, and Wizards.
- According to Stein (Twitter link), Rockets coach Kevin McHale met with free agent point guard Aaron Brooks on Sunday night.
May 3 at 3:28pm CST By Luke Adams
Thursday afternoon links from around the NBA: