Evan Turner

Free Agent Rumors: Mavs, Batum, Mozgov, Lee

With July less than 10 hours away, free agent rumors around the NBA are heating up. Let’s dive right in and round up the latest…

  • With a Chandler Parsons departure appearing increasingly likely, the Mavericks are expected to meet with Nicolas Batum once free agency begins, according to Tim MacMahon and Marc J. Spears of ESPN.com. Dallas’ ideal outcome in free agency would be to land Mike Conley and Hassan Whiteside, which wouldn’t leave cap room for Batum. But the team is doing its homework and is prepared to quickly move on to Plan B if Conley and/or Whiteside decide not to sign with Dallas.
  • The Rockets, Heat, Warriors, and Spurs are among the teams with interest in Timofey Mozgov, joining the Cavaliers and Knicks, tweets Dave McMenamin of ESPN.com. Jeff Zillgitt of USA Today Sports adds (via Twitter) that the Lakers also could be in play for Mozgov, depending on how free agency plays out.
  • We can add the Magic to the list of teams that will express interest in Eric Gordon, per Alex Kennedy of Basketball Insiders, who clarifies that Orlando still remains very invested in re-signing Evan Fournier (Twitter links). Earlier today, a report indicated that Houston, Memphis, New York, and New Orleans are eyeing Gordon.
  • There are increasing indications that coveted free agent wing Kent Bazemore won’t begin holding meetings for interested teams until after July 4th, according to ESPN.com’s Marc Stein (via Twitter).
  • The Knicks have some level of interest in pending free agent Courtney Lee, according to Stein and Ian Begley of ESPN.com. New York appears to be focusing its efforts on adding a big man – possibly Joakim Noah – and a wing in free agency.
  • According to Mark Medina of InsideSoCal.com, Evan Turner has expressed interest in about six NBA teams, including the Lakers and Celtics. It’s not clear whether Turner’s interest is reciprocated in each of those instances.

Mavs Don’t Plan To Offer Max To Chandler Parsons

Chandler Parsons is heading for free agency after turning down his player option for 2016/17 with the Mavericks, and while Dallas has interest in bringing back the veteran forward, the team has made it clear to Parsons that it doesn’t intend to offer him a max contract, reports Tim MacMahon of ESPN.com. Parsons’ camp, meanwhile, remains confident that he’ll command a max deal on the open market.

[RELATED: Mavs prioritizing Hassan Whiteside, Mike Conley in free agency]

A report earlier this week indicated that the Mavericks’ top targets in free agency will be Hassan Whiteside and Mike Conley, and that the team would be willing to part ways with Parsons if it can acquire those two players. Dallas is willing to take the risk of Parsons reaching a deal with another team while the Mavs pursue their top targets, since Whiteside and Conley are believed to have interest in Dallas, says MacMahon.

If Parsons does leave Dallas, the Mavericks could pursue a replacement in free agency. MacMahon reports that Evan Fournier, Kent Bazemore, Evan Turner, and Marvin Williams are among the players the Mavs are looking at, assuming they have cap room to spend on a small forward. If they don’t have that spending flexibility, the Mavs wouldn’t mind having Justin Anderson taking on a larger role at the position.

As for Parsons, he will be “all ears” when potential suitors come calling in free agency, and looks forward to exploring his options, sources tell MacMahon. Despite undergoing multiple surgical procedures on his knee, Parsons has received clearance to resume basketball activities and multiple orthopedic specialists have expressed optimism that his knee trouble won’t derail or jeopardize his career.

Warriors Eyeing Horford, Noah, Batum, Others

With free agency around the corner, the Warriors are prepared to make a run at Kevin Durant, the top player on the market. However, the team has plenty of alternate targets lined up in the event that Durant isn’t interested in coming to Golden State.

Sources tell Marcus Thompson II of The Bay Area News Group that the Warriors are eyeing Al Horford, Joakim Noah, and Hassan Whiteside as possible frontcourt additions. At small forward, Nicolas Batum and Evan Turner are among the potential targets Golden State is looking at, suggesting that Durant isn’t the only player that would make the club consider replacing pending free agent Harrison Barnes.

As I discussed when I previewed the Warriors’ offseason earlier this week, the team won’t be shy about upgrading the roster via free agency or trades, having vowed to be aggressive this summer. Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, and Draymond Green aren’t going anywhere, but anyone else on the roster may be expendable for the right incoming piece, and none of Golden State’s eight free agents – including Barnes and Festus Ezeli – are locks to return.

If the team does look to make a big splash, it will have to take into account Curry’s eventual raise. Even with the salary cap on the rise, the Warriors’ roster would start to get expensive if the team signs a max free agent this summer and inks Curry to a max extension a year from now. That scenario could mean paying more than $90MM combined to Curry, Thompson, Green, and a fourth player in 2017/18, with annual raises to follow.

Still, Warriors ownership has exhibited a willingness to spend into tax territory, so they aren’t about to suddenly start playing it safe now. Golden State will certainly be a team to watch when the free agent recruiting period officially gets underway a week from today.

Bulls Rumors: Butler, Turner, Zipser

When Kris Dunn got past the Celtics and landed with the Timberwolves at No. 5 in Thursday night’s draft, Minnesota and Chicago engaged in trade talks involving Dunn and Jimmy Butler, per several reports. While it seemed at times like those talks were gaining momentum, the two sides ultimately didn’t make a deal, and ESPN’s Marc Stein writes today that negotiations “fizzled” out, despite the Wolves’ aggressiveness.

As Stein writes, the Bulls are big fans of Dunn, prompting the Wolves to push hard to see if the two sides could reach an agreement involving the Providence point guard. However, Chicago decided not to trade its best player just a day after moving former MVP Derrick Rose, and GM Gar Forman downplayed the discussions late last night.

According to K.C. Johnson of The Chicago Tribune (via Twitter), the Wolves offered Dunn and Ricky Rubio for Butler. If Minnesota wasn’t willing to sweeten the offer any more than that, perhaps by adding Zach LaVine or another piece, it’s no surprise the Bulls weren’t convinced to move their All-Star forward.

Here’s more out of Chicago:

  • While the Celtics would like to keep Evan Turner, and the Knicks are also expected to have interest in the free-agent-to-be, Sean Deveney of The Sporting News adds another team to the list of potential suitors for Turner, writing that the Bulls are eyeing the Chicago native.
  • Jonathan Givony of DraftExpress.com reported last night that 48th overall pick Paul Zipser is expected to join the Bulls for the 2016/17 season, and today Givony tweets that Zipser’s buyout is worth just $600K. The small forward has one year remaining on his contract in Germany, but Chicago shouldn’t have any issues bringing him stateside, says Givony.
  • Asked about free agency, Forman indicated that the team’s sale pitch to potential targets this summer will involve selling the city of Chicago, per Nick Friedell of ESPN.com. As Friedell points out, the city is always a selling point, but it will be even more important this offseason, with Rose no longer a Bull and Joakim Noah and Pau Gasol potentially leaving as well — there won’t be as much veteran talent on the roster that appeals to prospective signees.

And-Ones: Love, Knicks, Turner, Butler

If the Cavaliers are going to make a major change this offseason, it’ll be Kevin Love on the trading block, reports Chris Mannix of The Vertical“If they go out like this, I’m betting on a Kevin Love auction,” one league executive tells Mannix. Love had just five points in 21 minutes during Sunday night’s blowout loss to the Warriors.

Here’s more from around the league:

  • The Knicks are rumored to have interest in Evan Turner and Alex Kennedy of Basketball Insiders hears that the interest in mutual (Twitter link). Turner will be an unrestricted free agent this summer.
  • Bulls forward Jimmy Butler has a strong desire to play in the Olympics despite hearing about all the players who will sit out, Vincent Goodwill of Comcast Sportsnet tweets.
  • Nick Minnerath has worked out for the Clippers, Alex Kennedy of Basketball Insiders tweets. Minnerath, who formerly played for the Canton Charge of the D-League,  will also attend free agent mini-camps with the Pistons and Mavs later this month.

Evan Turner Changes Agents

Evan Turner has made a change to his representation, according to Sean Deveney of The Sporting News, who reports (via Twitter) that Turner has fired agent David Falk. The veteran guard will now be repped by Kevin Bradbury of BDA Sports, says Deveney.

It’s a big summer for Turner, who is eligible for unrestricted free agency in a month. Despite being a second overall pick in the 2010 draft, Turner signed a fairly modest second contract with the Celtics, inking a two-year deal worth about $6.7MM in 2014.

The 27-year-old has been extremely durable in recent years, missing just two regular-season games over the last four seasons, and he set a new career high by shooting 45.6% from the field in 2015/16. Turner isn’t about to morph into a superstar overnight, but he was a solid role player in Boston, and with the salary cap on the rise, he has a chance at a decent payday this offseason.

Turner did say in May that he’d be open to the idea of taking a “hometown discount” to stay with the Celtics, but we’ll see if that comes to fruition when he’s given the opportunity to talk to other teams in July. At that time, it’ll be Bradbury, not Falk, who is tasked with negotiating Turner’s next NBA contract.

Atlantic Notes: Celtics, Turner, 76ers, Draft

With the Celtics preparing for a crucial draft, Adam Himmelsbach of The Boston Globe revisits one of the trades that helped Boston load up on picks for 2016, talking to Celtics co-owner Wyc Grousbeck and general manager Danny Ainge about the team’s 2013 blockbuster with the Nets. Grousbeck admits he was keeping a close eye on Nets games throughout this season, and both he and Ainge acknowledge they were surprised by how high Brooklyn’s 2016 pick will land. “I thought Brooklyn was going to be good,” Ainge said. “I thought that maybe the 2018 pick might have a chance to be a decent pick, but I really didn’t believe that 2016 pick would be where it is. I thought they had a chance to be a good team — like, a really good team.”

Here’s more from around the Atlantic:

  • Speaking to CSN at a fundraising event on Sunday, Evan Turner indicated that he’d be open to taking a “hometown discount” to remaining with the Celtics, joking that this is the first time he’s left an exit interview believing that a team wanted him back. As A. Sherrod Blakely of CSNNE.com details, Turner is expected to draw interest from a handful of other suitors this summer, but the former second overall pick hopes to work something out with Boston.
  • The 76ers‘ workout group scheduled for Monday has undergone a pair of changes, according to Keith Pompey of The Philadelphia Inquirer (Twitter links), who reports that VCU guard Melvin Johnson and Temple forward Jaylen Bond will replace Cat Barber and Dedric Lawson.
  • The 76ers have become the first NBA team to officially announce a jersey sponsorship deal, and the club will get $5MM per year from its agreement with StubHub, tweets Scott Soshnick of Bloomberg News. Darren Rovell of ESPN.com hears from sources that Philadelphia has sold the next three seasons at that $5MM-per-year rate, while ESPN’s Zach Lowe (Twitter link) wonders if it might be time to push future salary cap projections slightly upward based on that price.
  • Iowa State forward Georges Niang, who had an interview lined up with the Sixers over the weekend, said he’d be interested in reuniting with his old Tilton Prep teammate Nerlens Noel in Philadelphia, writes Jessica Camerato of CSNPhilly.com.

Atlantic Notes: Anthony, Turner, Blake

Carmelo Anthony wants the Knicks‘ next head coach to be a good communicator who can see things from the perspective of his players, as Marc Berman of The New York Post relays. “I think being able to hold guys accountable, but also having a relationship with the player,” Anthony said regarding what he wants to see from his next coach. “Kind of seeing things from a player’s perspective as well as a coach’s perspective. I think if you can build that camaraderie between a coach and a player, I think you’re onto something. You have to be willing to do that [seeing it from a players’ view], you have to be willing to accept that as a coach. It can be hard being a coach and accepting the fact that sometimes I have to see things from an athlete’s perspective, that can be hard. That’s like an ego play.

The veteran scorer also reiterated his desire for the team to consult with him during its coaching search, Berman notes. “Because you gotta think about it: This is gonna be a long-term journey of playing and you consider me being part of that plan, then I would want to know what’s going on,’’ Anthony said.

Here’s more from the Atlantic Division:

  • Evan Turner is set to become an unrestricted free agent this summer and coach Brad Stevens would like the swingman to return to the Celtics next season, Adam Himmelsbach of The Boston Globe notes. “I love Evan Turner,” Stevens said. “I think he’s a great teammate. I think he’s a hard worker. I think he loves basketball. I don’t think you can overvalue that. He loves basketball, and he never once — we didn’t have two conversations about starting or not starting. It was never about him. It was always about how to help us put our best foot forward, and he knew his role in helping us do that.”
  • Steve Blake, whom the Nets acquired last summer before shipping him to the Pistons for Quincy Miller, didn’t want to play for Brooklyn, and the team would likely have worked a buyout arrangement with him if it was unable to find a taker in the trade market, NetsDaily relays (on Twitter).
  • The Sixers own the first-rounders of the Heat (No. 24) and Thunder (No. 26) in this year’s NBA draft, and given their need for outside shooters, they should consider nabbing French shooting guard Isaia Cordinier, St. Joe’s small forward DeAndre Bembry or Michigan swingman Caris LeVert with those selections, opines Derek Bodner of Philadelphia magazine in his weekly mailbag.

Celtics Notes: Turner, Stevens, Ainge, Draft Picks

Evan Turner may have to be patient if he wants to re-sign with the Celtics in free agency, but he told Chris Forsberg of ESPN that coach Brad Stevens would like to keep him in Boston. “Coach definitely said [he wants me back],” said Turner. “He said he’ll be pushing for me and everything like that. And that’s pretty much it. But there’s a lot of stuff that’s going on right now. I understand it. And I understand what’s going to occur, with the draft picks and the young guys trying to develop and trying to get a superstar, stuff like that. I definitely comprehend it.” The Celtics may like Turner, and the swingman would like to get a deal done quickly, but the team figures to have other priorities this summer as it tries to improve a roster that went 48-34 and was bounced by the Hawks in the first round of the playoffs. Turner played a big part in Boston’s success, averaging 10.5 points, 4.9 rebounds and 4.4 assists in 81 games. He said “money’s cool” in free agency, but he feels it’s more important to find playing time with a winning organization.

There’s more news out of Boston:

  • The six-game loss to Atlanta showed that the Celtics need to raise their talent level, writes Tim Bontemps of The Washington Post. Bontemps says president of basketball operations Danny Ainge has to shake up a roster of “ill-fitting pieces” around All-Star point guard Isaiah Thomas. The Celtics own the Nets’ first-round pick, which is almost certain to fall in the top five, and they may have more than $50MM to spend once free agency starts July 1st. Bontemps expects the Celtics to chase every elite free agent on the market, adding that they have enough young talent and future picks to become trading partners if the Bulls’ Jimmy Butler or the Kings’ DeMarcus Cousins becomes available.
  • The Celtics will need some luck to have the offseason they are hoping for, contends Steve Bulpett of The Boston Herald. Boston has eight picks in this year’s draft, but the position of Brooklyn’s choice will help shape the future of the franchise. The Celtics have a 15.6% chance of landing the top overall selection and a 46.9% shot at staying in the top three. Boston will target Kevin Durant in free agency, and Bontemps believes Ainge is eager to make a deal with his parcel of draft picks, citing his offer to Charlotte last year in hopes of drafting Justise Winslow. Boston reportedly made a similar offer to the Heat. The writer mentions Sixers rookie Jahlil Okafor as another trade possibility.

Celtics Notes: Turner, Zeller, Johnson

Evan Turner is set to become an unrestricted free agent this summer, but he hopes his time on the open market is short and ends with him returning to the Celtics, writes A. Sherrod Blakely of CSNNE. “It [free agency] starts July 1st, hopefully it’s over July 1st,” Turner said. “I want to go somewhere and have an opportunity to win. Money’s cool, but I don’t want to sit there getting our brains beaten in and doing all that. I want to go somewhere ideally where the staff and front office [are] big on winning. Hopefully it’s back here. Other than that, winning and great fit are going to be the most important things.

The swingman is likely to see his annual salary jump to the $10MM range, Blakely contends, and that would be a healthy raise over the $3,425,510 he earned this past campaign. “It’s going to be way better than it was two years ago,” Turner said of his free agency. “It should be cool. I haven’t really thought about it. I don’t know really what I think about during the day, but I know it’s not that. I’ll once again stay out of trouble until then and try to keep bettering myself and growing.

Here’s more out of Boston:

  • Tyler Zeller is eligible to become a restricted free agent this offseason and is open to re-signing with the Celtics, who’ll have the right to match any offer the big man were to receive provided they submit a qualifying offer, Blakely relays in a separate piece. “It’s a great organization, a great place to be,” Zeller said. “So we’ll see what happens.” When asked if Boston wanted him back next season, Zeller said, “I would hope so. You always hope a team wants you back. I would think they would. But at the same time, when July comes around, we’ll really see. When those negotiations start. Until then, you can say whatever you want. Until then, we’ll see what happens.
  • Amir Johnson‘s 2016/17 salary of $12MM is non-guaranteed, which makes him a candidate to be waived if the Celtics require more cap space for free agent pursuits this summer. But the power forward echoed the sentiments of Turner and Zeller, noting that he would definitely prefer to be playing in Boston next season, as Gary Washburn of The Boston Globe relays (via Twitter).

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