Dallas Mavericks Rumors
May 10 at 8:49am CST By Luke Adams
With Flip Saunders assuming control of the Timberwolves' basketball operations, the team's coming offseason figures to play out a little differently than past summers under GM David Kahn. Nonetheless, it sounds as if Saunders will be targeting at least one player that Kahn pursued in the past. Dan Barreiro of KFAN in Minneapolis tweets that he expects the T-Wolves to "go hard" after O.J. Mayo this summer.
Darren Wolfson of 1500 ESPN Twin Cities follows up on Barreiro's tweet, confirming his report and noting (via Twitter) that he has heard from multiple people that Saunders likes Mayo. Wolfson adds (via Twitter) that the Wolves figure to have plenty of other players on their wish list and that creating the necessary cap space for the free agent guard may be tricky, but that Mayo has been cited by multiple sources as a likely target for Minnesota.
Assuming Brandon Roy's and Greg Stiemsma's contracts for 2013/14 are fully non-guaranteed, the Wolves only have about $36MM in guaranteed salary on their books for next season. That would seem to give them plenty of room to make a run at Mayo, who I predicted would earn more than the mid-level. However, that total doesn't include Andrei Kirilenko's $10.22MM player option, and it also assumes the team won't bring back restricted free agent Nikola Pekovic. If Kirilenko opts in and Pekovic returns on a $10-12MM salary, the Wolves won't have much room left to make Mayo a lucrative offer.
A sign-and-trade deal with the Mavericks is also a possibility if Minnesota doesn't have the necessary cap space to sign Mayo outright. But taking on salary in a Mayo trade could compromise Dallas' other plans in free agency, so I'd expect the Mavs to be reluctant to work out a Mayo deal unless they were presented an offer they couldn't refuse.
It's also worth mentioning that, since Mayo has a $4.2MM player option for next season, he could still decide to exercise that option before June 30th, avoiding free agency. The 25-year-old is considered extremely likely to opt out and become a free agent though.
May 9 at 10:13pm CST By Ryan Raroque
Not long after being officially introduced as the Suns' new general manager, Ryan McDonough addressed the topic of his head coaching search, saying that several people on his list of ideal candidates for the job have matched up with the list that had been in place before he was hired, adding that Lindsey Hunter still remains as "one of the top guys" (Paul Coro of the Arizona Republic via USA Today). McDonough also underscored the draft as a franchise's "lifeblood" for "sustainable success" and was complimentary of some of the current players on the roster. Here's more out of the Western Conference tonight:
- Both Kevin Sherrington and David Moore of SportsDayDFW put themselves in Mark Cuban's shoes and give their theoretical free agent pitches to Chris Paul. Sherrington points to the differences in the Clippers' and Mavericks' ownership, while Moore emphasizes the opportunity to play with a shooter like Dirk Nowitzki and for a proven coach in Rick Carlisle.
- Tim Cowlishaw of SportsDayDFW has his doubts about the Mavericks keeping Brandan Wright, noting that coach Rick Carlisle had issues with Wright's rebounding and inconsistency. With only six players under contract for next season as of right now, Cowlishaw expects the makeup of the team to be drastically different.
- Tim Kawakami of the Mercury News makes the argument that the Warriors are a much more dangerous team now than they would have been with a healthy David Lee.
- Lee told CSN Bay Area's Ric Bucher that he plans to return to action again this postseason and hasn't ruled out the possibility of getting surgery to repair his torn right hip flexor once the season is over (Sulia link).
- Aaron J. Lopez of Nuggets.com describes Masai Ujiri's journey toward becoming one of the league's top executives after humble beginnings ten years ago.
May 7 at 2:49pm CST By Luke Adams
There are plenty of names being thrown into the mix for the Nets' head coaching opening and seemingly just as many being taken out of the equation. Sam Amick of USA Today is the latest to chime in on the subject, reporting that Scott Skiles is among Brooklyn's candidates, but that the chatter about a Jerry Sloan/Deron Williams reunion probably shouldn't be taken seriously. Here are a few more Tuesday odds and ends from around the NBA:
- As he tells Steve Bulpett of the Boston Herald, Celtics president Danny Ainge hasn't sat down with Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce, and Doc Rivers yet to talk about their respective futures. "I don’t really pay much attention to what anybody says in the first week after the season," said Ainge, referring to comments made by the Celtics leaders immediately after last week's elimination.
- Likely lottery pick Anthony Bennett will undergo rotator cuff surgery on his left shoulder tomorrow, agent Jeff Schwartz tells ESPN.com's Chad Ford. Bennett, who will miss about four months, becomes the third top prospect that will miss the summer with an injury, along with Nerlens Noel and Alex Len. However, two GMs who spoke to Ford don't think the procedure will affect Bennett's draft stock.
- Pacers president Donnie Walsh told Marc Berman of the New York Post that he's unsure whether he'll remain in his current role next season. According to Berman, Walsh still believes there's a chance Larry Bird will unretire and assume his old position for the Pacers.
- Tim MacMahon of ESPNDallas.com examines the ways in which the Mavericks could add a maximum-salary free agent without breaking up their veteran core.
- With the Thunder and Grizzlies squaring off in the Western Conference Semifinals, Shaun Powell of Sports on Earth wonders if either team will end up regretting its blockbuster trade -- James Harden for the Thunder and Rudy Gay for the Grizz.
May 4 at 10:31pm CST By Ryan Raroque
In a video interview, Jerry Zgoda of the Star Tribune says that he isn't exactly sure what the hiring of Flip Saunders means for Rick Adelman. Zgoda also mentions that Saunders' offseason goal is to add perimeter shooters and "balance the roster," which he interprets to mean that the Timberwolves will try to land a shooting guard with good size and see what they can get for Derrick Williams. You can find more notes out of the Western Conference tonight below:
May 3 at 5:34pm CST By Luke Adams
We'll have to wait until July for most of this summer's player movement, but a handful of coaches are already on the move. Here's the latest on a pair of head coaching searches and a Trail Blazers assistant heading south:
- A new candidate has emerged in the Pistons' head coaching search, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports, who reports that Detroit is eyeing Spurs assistant Mike Budenholzer. Wojnarowski says Joe Dumars traveled to San Antonio and met for several hours with Gregg Popovich's top assistant earlier this week. The Pistons are also expected to line up a meeting with Rockets assistant Kelvin Sampson when possible, says the Yahoo! scribe.
- Despite their reported interest in Sampson, the Bucks haven't asked for permission to speak to him yet, tweets Gery Woelfel of the Racine Journal Times, noting that the Bucks are still free to talk to Sampson's agent.
- Sampson himself told reporters, including John Rohde of the Oklahoman, that he won't talk to any interested teams until the Rockets/Thunder series is over "one way or the other."
- The Bobcats have requested and received permission to interview Lakers assistant Steve Clifford, reports Rick Bonnell of the Charlotte Observer.
- Former Blazers interim head coach and current assistant Kaleb Canales is leaving Portland to take on
a similar assistant role with the Mavericks, according to Jason Quick of the
Oregonian (Twitter link). Canales will replace offensive coordinator Jim O'Brien, who is retiring from coaching, Rick Carlisle tells Earl K. Sneed of Mavs.com (Twitter link). As TNT's David Aldridge points out (via Twitter), this isn't the first time Carlisle attempted to get Canales to Dallas.
May 2 at 1:04pm CST By Luke Adams
While fans of playoff teams are watching to see if their favorite clubs can make it through to the second round, fans of lottery teams are still playing the waiting game. May 21st's draft lottery is still almost three weeks away, but at least this year's draft class has been finalized, with the NBA announcing this year's complete list of early entrants yesterday. As lottery teams continue to look ahead to the combine and lottery on the way later this month, here are a few draft-related updates:
- Sources around the NBA have told Joe Kotoch of SheridanHoops.com that the Magic and Pelicans would "strongly" consider trading down if either team were to win the draft lottery and land the No. 1 pick. We didn't see any top-10 picks traded last June, but perhaps that will change this year, given the general belief that the 2013 class is significantly weaker.
- Speaking of that first overall pick, Nerlens Noel continues to be ranked No. 1 on Chad Ford's big board at ESPN.com (Insider-only link), though there are plenty of other changes in Ford's list. C.J. McCollum, Dario Saric, and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope are among the risers, with all three ranked in lottery territory now.
- Although Noel remains atop Ford's list, fellow ESPN.com scribe Fran Fraschilla (Insider link) makes the case for taking Maryland big man Alex Len over the Kentucky center.
- Tim MacMahon of ESPNDallas.com explains why McCollum and Gorgui Dieng could make sense as draft targets for the Mavericks.
May 1 at 11:04pm CST By Chuck Myron
Ric Bucher of 95.7 The Game reported in March that the NBA Summer League in Las Vegas is adopting a tournament-style format this year, and the league confirmed the news today. The games will take place between July 12th and July 22nd, and while the move promises excitement, the contests won't necessarily have much meaning. Damian Lillard won the circuit's co-MVP honors last summer to kick off his Rookie of the Year campaign, but the other co-MVP was Josh Selby, who's been out of the NBA since March. While we wait to see how the revamped summer league shakes out, there's plenty of other NBA news:
- Vince Ellis of the Detroit Free Press compares Nate McMillan and Lindsey Hunter, the presumptive frontrunners for the Pistons coaching vacancy. The team is still expected to consider a wide range of candidates, and that list includes Pacers assistant Brian Shaw and Heat assistant David Fizdale, according to Ellis.
- Dale Kasler, Tony Bizjak and Ryan Lillis of the Sacramento Bee lay out the myriad contingencies still remaining in the Kings saga after the NBA's relocation committee recommended this week that the team stay in Sacramento.
- Four HoopsWorld writers have Nerlens Noel penciled in as the No. 1 pick, but Joe Kotoch of SheridanHoops.com has the Kentucky center at No. 2, behind Kansas shooting guard Ben McLemore.
- Renaldo Balkman has signed to play for Brujos de Guayama in Puerto Rico, Luis Modestti reports (translation via Sportando). The former Knicks first-round pick received a one-year ban from playing in the Philippines earlier this season after choking a teammate.
- Marc Stein of ESPN.com appeared on KESN-FM in Dallas this week, and pegged the Mavericks' chances of signing Dwight Howard at 10%, according to a Dallas Morning News transcription. Stein thinks Howard is still most likely to re-sign with the Lakers.
- Jeff Caplan of NBA.com takes an optimistic view of Howard's future with the Lakers, believing Howard will re-sign and, freed of speculation about his next destination, fulfill his promise as a superstar.
May 1 at 4:26pm CST By Luke Adams
With three games on the postseason schedule tonight, including two that could be series-enders, it appears we're in for another fun night of NBA ball. While we prepare for the evening's action in New York, Indiana, and Oklahoma City, let's check in on a few items out of the Southwest Division....
- As the Mavericks prepare their to-do list for what Eddie Sefko of the Dallas Morning News calls "the most important summer in franchise history," the top priority is figuring out exactly how much money they'll have to spend this offseason, according to Sefko.
- There's mutual interest between Brandan Wright and the Mavericks in seeing the big man back in Dallas next season, but Tim MacMahon of ESPNDallas.com predicts Wright won't come cheap. MacMahon expects bidding for the free-agent-to-be to start in the four-year, $16MM range.
- Patrick Beverley would love to stay long-term with the NBA team that took a chance on him, telling Mark Berman of FOX 26 Houston (Twitter link) that he'd "definitely love to be [with the Rockets] forever."
- Jemele Hill of ESPN.com is the latest to make the case for why Dwight Howard ought to sign with the Rockets rather than the Lakers or any other suitors this summer.
April 29 at 6:20pm CST By Zach Links
Here's a look at the latest out of the Lone Star State..
- Darren Collison was once believed to be the point guard of the future for the Mavericks, but he experienced an up-and-down season and he may have played his last game for Dallas, writes Earl K. Sneed of NBA.com. The guard was acquired from Indiana last offseason in a sign-and-trade deal for big man Ian Mahinmi.
- Latvian prospect Davis Bertans will fly to San Antonio when the season ends to work out with the Spurs, according to Emiliano Carchia of Sportando. The 6'10" big man was drafted in the second round of the 2011 draft by the Pacers and was immediately dealt to the Spurs. Bertans currently plays for Serbia's KK Partizan.
- Tim MacMahon of ESPNDallas.com checked in on O.J. Mayo's stock as he heads towards the open market this summer. For his part, Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle hopes to have the shooting guard back next season.
April 26 at 12:19pm CST By Luke Adams
When I asked yesterday which playoff team down 2-0 in the first round had the best chance of coming back and advancing, over half of you picked the Grizzlies. Memphis delivered on the first step of that comeback last night, holding the Clippers to 82 points en route to a Game Three win.
Meanwhile, the Rockets only received about 5% of the votes in that poll, but their chances likely improved with word from the Thunder that Russell Westbrook will undergo surgery to repair a lateral meniscus tear in his right knee. As we wait for official word on a timetable for Westbrook's return, let's check out a few notes from around the Western Conference:
- Nate McMillan may be a top contender for the Pistons' head coaching opening, but Vince Ellis of the Detroit Free Press says there's a "belief around the league" that McMillan will wait to see what happens with the Kings, since he could also be a strong candidate there if the franchise moves to Seattle.
- The NBA's relocation committee is expected to make a recommendation to the Board of Governors next Monday on whether or not to approve the sale and relocation of the Kings. However, an official vote by league owners may not come until May 13th, as Dale Kasler, Ryan Lillis, and Tony Bizjak of the Sacramento Bee outline.
- While Chris Kaman has said he'd like to return to Dallas next season, Tim MacMahon of ESPNDallas.com thinks the veteran big man just doesn't want to close any doors. MacMahon predicts Kaman will have to take a pay cut this summer, and will end up signing a one-year contract with a team besides the Mavericks.
- Speaking to Mondo.rs (translation via HoopsHype), Nikola Pekovic reiterated a desire to re-sign with the Timberwolves this summer, adding that he has no intention of leaving the NBA to return to Europe.
- Andre Iguodala's performance in this year's postseason could go a long way to exhibiting whether or not he's worth a long-term, big-money contract, according to Mark Kiszla of the Denver Post.