Boston Celtics Rumors

Atlantic Notes: Sanchez, Grant, Stevens

January 31 at 12:59pm CST By Eddie Scarito

Orlando Sanchez remains on the Knicks‘ radar as a player worth grooming for the future, Marc Berman of The New York Post writes. The 26-year-old forward currently plays for New York’s D-League affiliate in Westchester, and the Knicks envision Sanchez making their roster out of training camp next season, Berman notes. Sanchez looks at the success that Langston Galloway has had turning a 10-day deal into a new contract as a source of inspiration, Berman adds.

Here’s more from the Atlantic Division:

  • Despite Celtics coach Brad Stevens owning a career NBA record of 41-86, president of basketball operations Danny Ainge insists that Stevens’ job is secure, Mark Murphy of The Boston Herald writes. “When I was going through things at Butler and we were having all kinds of success, I just kept learning how important it was to just keep coaching your team,” Stevens said. “Here we’re experiencing our fair share of growing pains and it’s the same answer. Here the biggest thing is our ownership and our leadership team. They’ve been very good with me and very supportive. As I said, at the end of the day you’re just coaching your team as best as you can every day.
  • The Celtics‘ challenge of trying to field a playoff-caliber team while trying to acquire talent and draft picks for the future is one that Ainge embraces, A. Sherrod Blakely of CSNNE.com writes. “I would love to see our team in the playoffs, but I don’t want to see us back into the playoffs with a really bad record and not even have a fighting chance,” Ainge said. “If our team can keep getting better by developing, if we can make some deals at the trade deadline that put us in position to actually get into the playoffs and have a chance to win a playoff series, I think that would be a lot of fun.
  • The Knicks have spoken with Horace Grant regarding a position within the organization, Andy Adler of PIX 11 News reports (Twitter link). Adler adds that the former NBA player has met with coach Derek Fisher, and that the discussions could have been about a position on Fisher’s coaching staff. Grant has ties to team president Phil Jackson, who coached Grant in Chicago and with the Lakers, and he is familiar with the triangle offense as well.

Eastern Notes: Vaughn, Pistons, Bucks, Knicks

January 30 at 1:00pm CST By Chuck Myron

The Magic believed as recently as a month ago that youth and inexperience were to blame for the team’s struggles, but it’s no longer that the Magic are losing that troubles club officials; it’s how they’re losing, writes Josh Robbins of the Orlando Sentinel. Still, Jacque Vaughn remains unmoved amid reports he’s close to losing his job.

“I do my job every day,” Vaughn said today. “I don’t abide by the tyranny of other people’s attitudes and moods. I’m ready to rock ‘n’ roll.”

There’s more on the Magic amid the latest around the Eastern Conference:

  • The Pistons view a trade as their preferred method to find a point guard to compensate for the loss of the injured Brandon Jennings, tweets David Mayo of MLive. Signing a D-Leaguer is Plan B, Mayo adds. Stan Van Gundy is now saying Monday is the earliest day the team would make any such move as he keeps pushing back the timeline, Mayo notes.
  • Coach Jason Kidd has offered Kenyon Martin a chance to remain with the Bucks for next year as an assistant coach, a source tells David Alarcón of HoopsHype (Twitter link; translation via HoopsHype). Martin signed a deal Thursday that keeps him with Milwaukee as a player through the end of the season.
  • Some of the Magic‘s veteran acquisitions from this past offseason began questioning the on-court decision-making, and the doubt spread to some of Orlando’s younger players as the team failed to gain confidence in Vaughn, writes Steve Kyler of Basketball Insiders. Vaughn didn’t earn his team’s trust, Kyler believes, but the Magic nonetheless dealt the coach a losing hand, as Kyler also opines.
  • The Knicks have sent Cleanthony Early to the D-League, the team announced. The assignment is to allow the rookie to work on his conditioning following knee surgery, but he’s expected back with the big club by Sunday, according to Marc Berman of the New York Post (Twitter links).
  • The Celtics recalled Andre Dawkins from the D-League on Thursday only to quickly send him down again, the team announced in a pair of tweets. The team brought the 10-day signee up to Boston merely for a practice, as Chris Forsberg of ESPNBoston.com details.

Eastern Notes: Olynyk, Knicks, Wade, Nets

January 29 at 8:51pm CST By Eddie Scarito

The date when the Celtics can expect Kelly Olynyk to return to action is still in question after the center’s most recent round of medical tests, Chris Forsberg of ESPNBoston.com writes. “It’s tough with something like an ankle, everyone is different,” said Olynyk. “It could be a week, it could be three weeks, it could be a month — you never know. I’m just trying to get better and evaluate it each day, and take the next step whenever it’s deemed necessary.” Olynyk was initially expected to miss a month of action.

Here’s more from the East:

  • With Lance Thomas and Louis Amundson set to join New York for the remainder of the season, this will limit the team’s ability to make roster roster moves for the rest of the campaign, Ian Begley of ESPNNewYork.com writes. The Knicks will probably need to try and find a taker for Andrea Bargnani and Jose Calderon or to reach a buyout arrangement with Amar’e Stoudemire, in order for the team to be able to add any new faces to its roster, Begley adds.
  • Amundson is thankful that the Knicks have signed him for the rest of the season, Marc Berman of The New York Post notes (Twitter link). The big man wasn’t sure if he would be on an NBA roster after being waived by New York earlier this month, Berman adds.
  • Dwyane Wade told reporters today that he would likely miss a minimum of two or three weeks due to his injured hamstring, Joseph Goodman of The Miami Herald reports. “I won’t be seeing y’all for a little while, so take a good look at this face,” the Heat star guard said. “You can’t put a time on it. You can’t look at the hamstring and say you’re going to be out this amount of games. Like many muscle strains, you’ve got to go day-by-day.
  • The Nets are hoping to have their own D-League team within the next two seasons, Robert Windrem of NetsDaily writes. Brooklyn would likely buy the rights to an expansion team and place it in the New York area, similar to what the Knicks did with their Westchester affiliate this season, Windrem notes.

Latest On Celtics, Tayshaun Prince

January 28 at 10:43am CST By Eddie Scarito

JANUARY 28TH: Sources tell Bulpett that Prince will push to leave the Celtics, a notion that the forward hinted at publicly.

“Obviously I want to be in a winning situation,” Prince said. “Everybody wants to be in a winning situation, make no mistake about it, especially toward the end of your career. But at the end of the day, it’s about doing what’s right and going out there and having fun. If you get to the point where I am in my career after all these years, you just want to go out there and have a chance to win and do the right things.”

JANUARY 24TH: The Celtics still wish to trade Prince prior to the February deadline, and are seeking a future draft pick in return, Bulpett reports. There have been reports that Boston would attempt to work out a buyout deal if they failed to find a taker for Prince. But Celtics coach Brad Stevens may lobby for the team to keep the forward if a trade fails to materialize, Bulpett adds. Stevens believes that Prince can help the franchise with both with his talent and leadership, Bulpett notes. Stevens also added, “I think there’s no question about his value, but also there’s the fact that he’s a veteran who knows how to,” the coach said. “The other thing is he just has such great poise and presence. Tayshaun just knows how to play. There’s a lot of things that come very natural to him. I think natural is right, but also he’s been in the league for 13 years.

JANUARY 19TH: A buyout deal with Prince is likely in the event the Celtics don’t end up trading him, Bulpett writes.

JANUARY 18TH: The Celtics are expected to attempt to trade Prince, and perhaps do a buyout deal if they can’t find a taker, according to Steve Bulpett of the Boston Herald. Prince told reporters including Bulpett that all options remain in play, adding that talks about his future with Boston took place today for the first time. The Clippers and Prince reportedly have mutual interest, though the Clips would rather sign him post-buyout than trade for him.

“But the most important thing is, even though all options are on the table, my job is to be a Boston Celtic at this point in time and help where help is needed,” Prince said. “So that’s the main thing, and I can’t have one foot in and one foot out the door right now — even though everything’s on the table. That would be wrong on my behalf. So we’ll see how it plays out.”

4:40pm: Ainge and Prince will meet in Los Angeles during Boston’s upcoming trip to the West Coast to discuss Prince’s future with the club, and it’s not out of the question that Prince would remain with the Celtics, Murphy tweets.

JANUARY 15TH, 9:14am: The Celtics are exploring potential trades involving Prince as they seek more draft picks, and a buyout is a “secondary option,” according to Mark Murphy of the Boston Herald. They can’t aggregate his salary in a swap, since they just acquired him via trade, but they’re otherwise still allowed to flip him.

JANUARY 13TH, 6:44pm: Sean Deveney of The Sporting News (Twitter link) reports that “no substantive talks” have taken place between Prince and the Celtics regarding a buyout yet.

6:27pm: Prince is unlikely to ever don a Celtics uniform, and the two sides are making progress on reaching a buyout agreement, Gary Washburn of The Boston Globe reports (Twitter link).

4:43pm: The Celtics continue to reshape their roster with an eye on the future. Boston and newly acquired forward Tayshaun Prince are negotiating toward a buyout arrangement, Chris Mannix of SI.com reports (Twitter link). No agreement has been reached just yet, Mannix adds. Prince is set to become an unrestricted free agent at season’s end, and is making $7,707,865 in the final year of his deal.

Prince came to Boston as part of the three-way deal between the Celtics, Grizzlies, and Pelicans that sent forward Jeff Green to Memphis. But with Boston obviously building toward next season and wanting to get a better look at younger assets, Prince seemed like an obvious candidate to be dealt to a contending team or to reach a buyout arrangement that would allow him to try and catch on with a squad in the playoff hunt. The Cavs have been reported to have interest in the 34-year-old if he were to become a free agent.

In a career spanning 908 games, Prince has averaged 11.9 points, 4.9 rebounds, and 2.5 assists per game. His slash line is .455/.368/.758. He was averaging 7.3 PPG and 3.2 RPG for Memphis this season prior to being dealt.

Atlantic Notes: Prince, Harris, Ainge, Mullens

January 27 at 8:59am CST By Chuck Myron

Tayshaun Prince is playing well and has helped the Celtics close to within two games of the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference, but while Brad Stevens is clearly a fan of his game, Prince’s performance is making him a more valuable trade chip, writes Chris Forsberg of ESPNBoston.com. The C’s have reportedly been attempting to deal Prince for draft considerations. There’s more on the Celtics amid the latest from around the Atlantic Division:

  • A close friend of Tobias Harris told Marc Berman of the New York Post last week that the forward wants to win a championship with the Knicks, but Harris’ father disputes the notion that his son is anxious to play for New York, as Torrel Harris tells Isaiah Narciso of The Gospel Times. The Knicks apparently plan to pursue the soon-to-be restricted free agent.
  • Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge waffled about his future while the Celtics were a winning team, but he’s committed to seeing Boston’s rebuilding project through and says he’s “ready for the long haul,” as he tells Steve Bulpett of the Boston Herald.
  • Byron Mullens has changed agents, hiring Todd Ramasar of Stealth Sports, tweets David Pick of Eurobasket.com. The center, who played briefly in China this season and saw his last NBA action for the Sixers last year, had been with Lee Melchionni of the Wasserman Media Group.

Multiple Teams Interested In Nate Robinson

January 26 at 12:21pm CST By Chuck Myron

JANUARY 26TH: The Clips remain interested in Robinson but are looking into other deals first, a source told Spears for his weekly power rankings column.

JANUARY 23RD: The Clippers are still Robinson’s preferred free agency destination, Alex Kennedy of Basketball Insiders reports (Twitter link). Doc Rivers, Los Angeles’ president of basketball operations and coach, recently said that the team intends to use its remaining two roster spots to add veteran players next month. Robinson would certainly qualify as a veteran addition, but there have been conflicting reports regarding L.A.’s level of interest in the diminutive guard.

5:09pm: The Cavs won’t pursue Robinson beyond their initial inquiry, according to Chris Haynes of the Northeast Ohio Media Group (Twitter link).

JANUARY 19TH, 11:55am: Robinson reached out to the Heat, but the Heat still hadn’t responded two days after the inquiry, as Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald hears. That seemingly conflicts with Spears’ report from Thursday that Miami was interested in Robinson (below).

2:12pm: USA Today’s Sam Amick suggests that the Clippers have cooled on the idea of signing Robinson (Twitter link). The situation regarding the former Slam Dunk champ is “fluid,” Amick says.

JANUARY 16TH, 7:45am: The Clippers are “running unopposed” atop Robinson’s wish list, according to Marc Stein of ESPN.com.

JANUARY 15TH, 7:37pm: Washington won’t make a roster move until it knows what Ray Allen‘s plans are, J. Michael of CSNWashington.com tweets.

7:32pm: Robinson would like to play for the Wizards, but the team isn’t currently interested in his services, Jorge Castillo of The Washington Post reports (Twitter link). This conflicts with Spears’ earlier report that Washington was indeed interested in Robinson’s services.

7:04pm: The Clippers are still the frontrunners to land Robinson, Alex Kennedy of Basketball Insiders tweets.

5:49pm: The Wizards and the Heat are also interested in Robinson, Spears tweets.

5:42pm: The Cavaliers have also expressed interest in Robinson, Marc J. Spears of Yahoo! Sports reports (Twitter link).

4:18pm: The Clippers are likely to sign Robinson now that he’s reached a buyout agreement with the Celtics, Arash Markazi of ESPNLosAngeles.com reports (Twitter link).

3:33pm: The Clippers have interest in Nate Robinson, who’s agreed to a buyout deal with the Celtics, and they’d still like to sign him once they complete the Austin Rivers trade, tweets Ben Bolch of the Los Angeles Times. Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports suggested earlier this week that the Clippers were a possible suitor, and Bolch indicates that’s indeed the case. The Clippers had spoken with the Nuggets about acquiring the 5’9″ guard via trade before the Nuggets instead sent him to Boston this week, Wojnarowski also wrote.

Clippers president of basketball operations and coach Doc Rivers was Robinson’s coach when Robinson was with the Celtics for parts of 2009/10 and 2010/11, including Boston’s run to the 2010 NBA Finals. Robinson, whose seeing a career-low 14.1 minutes per game, reportedly wants to have a chance to showcase his talents in advance of this summer’s free agent market as well as to again play with a contender.

The Clippers would give him a crack at another title, but their backcourt is fairly crowded, with Chris Paul, Jamal Crawford and J.J. Redick in prominent roles. Backup point guard Jordan Farmar has averaged almost precisely as much playing time this year as Robinson did with the Nuggets, and Farmar has apparently been wanting more. Farmar doesn’t appear likely to head to Boston in the Austin Rivers trade, but Kings have reportedly discussed swapping Ramon Sessions for Farmar.

The Clips’ roster is at 15 players, including Dahntay Jones, whom the team signed to a 10-day contract Wednesday, though much remains up in the air. The Clippers are less than $1MM shy of the hard cap as it stands, and it’s not quite clear what they’ll relinquish in the Rivers trade and where they’ll stand in relation to that $80.829MM hard cap once the trade goes through, but they’d need roughly $450K available to sign Robinson anytime soon to a prorated minimum salary for the rest of the season.

Brian Windhorst of ESPN.com suggested this week that the Cavs are in the mix for Robinson, too. The Celtics have yet to officially waive Robinson, though Eric Pincus of Basketball Insiders indicated Wednesday that they were waiting on Jameer Nelson to complete his physical with the Nuggets, which would put a bow on the trade that sent Robinson to Boston (Twitter link).

And-Ones: Hummel, Bullock, Celtics, Draft

January 26 at 9:00am CST By Chuck Myron

There’s been a run of tough luck over the past few days, with Kobe Bryant, Brandon Jennings, Tony Wroten and Mirza Teletovic all likely having been knocked out for the season. There’s news on another injury this morning as the NBA hopes inclement weather in the Northeast won’t interfere with a seven-game night:

  • The Wolves have lost Robbie Hummel to a broken right (shooting) hand, the team announced (on Twitter), and Hummel said he’ll be out four to six weeks, reports Jerry Zgoda of the Star Tribune. Hummel has started four of the last five games for Minnesota, which has a full 15-man roster, including Miroslav Raduljica, who’s on a 10-day contract.
  • Suns coach Jeff Hornacek believes new acquisition Reggie Bullock will fit into Phoenix’s plans for the future, as he told reporters, including Arash Markazi of ESPNLosAngeles.com. Bullock engaged in what he calls a “great conversation” with Clippers coach/executive Doc Rivers when he found out that Rivers had pulled the trigger on the deal that sent him to Phoenix, Markazi observes.
  • The original plan was for Andre Dawkins to remain on D-League assignment for the duration of his 10-day contract with the Celtics, but coach Brad Stevens indicated there’s a decent chance that will change, notes Steve Bulpett of the Boston Herald. In any case, Gino Pilato of D-League Digest examines the reasons why NBA teams would sign a player to a 10-day deal and immediately send him to the D-League, as Boston did with Dawkins.
  • Tyler Harris said the idea that he intends to enter this year’s NBA draft didn’t come from him, tweets Adam Zagoria of SNY.tv. A report last week indicated that the Providence junior small forward planned to declare for early entry.

Atlantic Notes: Knicks, Teletovic, Celtics

January 25 at 8:37pm CST By Zach Links

Despite what some may believe, the Knicks‘ goal was never to lose games this season, as Al Iannazzone of Newsday writes.  “I do believe that we put a lot of hard work in to kind of get to this point,” Knicks star Carmelo Anthony said. “To see the results of winning basketball games after the work we put in, after the chemistry we’re trying to build, the culture that we’re trying to build, just to see us put together a few wins right now is a great feeling.”  More from the Atlantic Division..

  • Odds are strong Nets three-point shooting specialist Mirza Teletovic will recover from his pulmonary embolism and play at some point next season in the NBA.  However, medical experts tell Marc Berman of the New York Post that there are no guarantees this doesn’t turn into a career-threatening episode.  Teletovic is a restricted free agent this summer.
  • All of the losing will have been worthwhile for the Knicks if they can land Jahlil Okafor, opines Fred Kerber of the New York Post.  A scout who spoke with Kerber loved his upside, saying teams “see the next LeBron or Kevin Durant down the road.”  Meanwhile, one NBA GM called him “the No. 1 pick without question.”
  • The Celtics‘ extreme makeover is nearing the final stretch, writes Jeremy Gottlieb of Boston.com.  Gottlieb writes that there’s still more work to be done, however, including trading Brandon Bass and figuring out what to do with Jared Sullinger.
  • With Celtics big man Kelly Olynyk out of action, Bass can now improve his trade value, writes Brian Robb of Boston.com.

Cavs Interested In Will Bynum, Bobby Brown

January 25 at 9:18am CST By Eddie Scarito

SUNDAY, 9:18am:  The interest between Brown and the Cavs is mutual, reports Jorge Sierra of Hoopshype. “I will say this about Cleveland: How could anyone not want to play with LeBron [James]? First off, he is the best player in the league and second, you have a chance to be a part of a championship team. Plus, playing in Europe, I was a big fan of [David] Blatt] and always wanted to play for him. Also, I have known [David Griffin] since I was in the draft and have always been a huge believer in him,” Brown said.

SATURDAY, 8:43am: With the Cavaliers still seeking to add depth at the point guard spot, Will Bynum and Bobby Brown are two players whom Cleveland is keeping an eye on, Jason Lloyd of The Akron Beacon Journal reports. Both are currently playing in China, and neither will be available until after the Chinese Basketball Association’s playoffs conclude in March, Lloyd notes. If the Cavs are unable to land a player via a trade before then, either Bynum or Brown could be brought aboard, Lloyd adds.

Bynum, 32, is a seven year veteran who will likely have a number of NBA offers to choose from, Lloyd writes. The Cavs will only be able to offer the guard the prorated veteran’s minimum, but a shot at an NBA title could be a strong draw for Bynum, Lloyd notes. Bynum has been playing for the Guangdong Southern Tigers since early December after being signed to replace the injured Emmanuel Mudiay, who is a likely 2015 lottery selection.

The Celtics had waived Bynum and his guaranteed contract, worth nearly $2.916MM, in order to free up roster space shortly after acquiring him from the Pistons in a preseason trade. Bynum’s career numbers in 353 NBA appearances are 8.2 points, 1.6 rebounds, and 3.3 assists. His career slash line is .443/.280/.800.

Adding Brown would be a more complicated matter for the Cavs, Lloyd notes. The 30-year-old still has two years remaining on his contract with DongGuan, but there have been reports that Brown’s deal contains an NBA out clause. Brown went undrafted back in the 2007 NBA draft, and he has played for four NBA teams during his career. Brown had worked out for the Lakers prior to the season, but he had already inked his deal to head overseas prior to that display. Brown’s NBA averages over 113 career games are 5.1 points and 1.8 assists. His career slash line is .384/.311/.810.

Kelly Olynyk Expected To Miss A Month

January 23 at 8:40pm CST By Eddie Scarito

Celtics big man Kelly Olynyk is expected to miss at least a month of action, A. Sherrod Blakely of CSNNE.com reports. Olynyk sprained his ankle during the fourth quarter of Boston’s 90-89 win over the Trail Blazers on Thursday night. The 23-year-old will undergo further testing this weekend to determine the exact extent of his injury, Steve Bulpett of The Boston Herald reports (Twitter link). The Celtics currently have the league maximum of 15 players in their roster, which includes Andre Dawkins, who inked a 10-day contract with the team today. Boston would need to release or trade a player if it wishes to add more frontcourt depth.

He’s unlikely to be available until potential right at or after the All-Star break,” Celtics coach Brad Stevens said of Olynyk. “I think it’s a sprained ankle. The MRI will tell us more but he got it pretty good. It wasn’t just a twist.” Stevens also confirmed that the center has returned to Boston for further medical attention and testing, Blakely notes.

Olynyk has appeared in 40 games for the Celtics this season, including 13 as a starter. In 24.5 minutes per of action per night he is averaging 11.1 points, 5.4 rebounds, and 1.7 assists. Olynyk’s career averages since being selected with the No. 13 pick in the 2013 NBA draft are 9.6 PPG, 5.3 RPG, and 1.6 APG. His career slash line is .482/.352/.757.