Indiana Pacers Rumors

Lakers Re-Sign Xavier Henry

July 25 at 6:16pm CDT By Chuck Myron

JULY 25TH: The Lakers have announced the signing as official in a team release.

“Xavier earned a spot on our team last season after being a training camp invitee, and we hope he continues the dedication to improving he has displayed for us thus far,” said GM Mitch Kupchak. “When healthy, Xavier provided our team with an offensive punch, and we expect he’ll strive to add to his skillset and become a well-rounded player.”

JULY 18TH: The Lakers will re-sign swingman Xavier Henry to a minimum-salary deal, reports Dave McMenamin of ESPNLosAngeles.com (on Twitter). It appears to be a one-year arrangement, as Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports reported as the sides neared agreement (Twitter link).

The Arn Tellem client was one of a handful of successful reclamation projects for the Lakers this past season, making the opening-night roster as a camp invitee and displaying a strong ability to score, averaging 10.0 points in 21.1 minutes per contest. Both numbers were career highs, as Henry had struggled to live up to having been the 12th overall pick in 2010.

The Pacers and Heat reached out to Henry this month, according to McMenamin (Twitter link), but he planned to work out for the Lakers after exploring options around the league, and the purple-and-gold maintained interest in re-signing him. Henry had wrist and knee surgeries in April but has been expected to be ready for training camp.

Teams With Hard Caps For 2014/15

July 24 at 2:29pm CDT By Chuck Myron

The NBA’s salary cap is really a misnomer of sorts, since it doesn’t truly cap salaries. Look no further than last year’s Nets for confirmation of that. They doled out nearly $103MM in salaries, incurring more than $90.57MM in luxury taxes and smashing the record for the greatest expenditure on a single roster in NBA history.

The NBA’s salary cap is commonly referred to as a “soft cap,” but there are still ways that teams can impose a “hard cap” upon themselves and set a finite limit to their spending. If a team’s salary exceeds the luxury tax threshold ($76,829,000) by more than $4MM, that team is not permitted to acquire a player via sign-and-trade, or to use the non-taxpayer’s mid-level or biannual exceptions. The only exceptions available to such a team are the taxpayer’s mid-level of $3,278,000, the minimum-salary exception, and whatever form of Bird rights they have on their own free agents. As soon as a team completes a sign-and-trade deal, uses its BAE, or uses more than $3,278,000 of its MLE to sign a player, that club becomes hard-capped at $80,829,000 for the 2014/15 season. In other words, team salary can’t exceed that amount at any point between now and June 30th, 2015.

For some clubs, that hard cap isn’t a major concern. For instance, the Suns still have about $18MM in breathing room below the hard cap, so they have plenty of flexibility to re-sign restricted free agent Eric Bledsoe to a max contract if need be. On the other hand, the Clippers are only about $1MM below the hard cap, so any trades or signings they make for the rest of the season will have to be constructed to ensure their team salary doesn’t surpass that $80.829MM cutoff.

More clubs may trigger hard caps as the offseason wears on, but here are the teams that are now locked into a hard cap for the 2014/15 season, along with an estimation (via Basketball Insiders) of their current team salaries and the reason(s) why the hard cap was created:

Hawks
Hard cap created: Acquired Thabo Sefolosha via sign-and-trade
Estimated team salary: $60,975,564

Rockets
Hard cap created: Acquired Trevor Ariza via sign-and-trade
Estimated team salary: $68,125,942

Wizards
Hard cap created: Acquired Kris Humphries via sign-and-trade; acquired DeJuan Blair via sign-and-trade; signed Paul Pierce via non-taxpayer MLE
Estimated team salary: $76,646,603

Suns
Hard cap created: Acquired Isaiah Thomas via sign-and-trade
Estimated team salary: $51,805,537

Warriors
Hard cap created: Signed Shaun Livingston via non-taxpayer MLE
Estimated team salary: $72,232,245

Pacers
Hard cap created: Signed C.J. Miles and Damjan Rudez via non-taxpayer MLE
Estimated team salary: $74,798,942

Clippers
Hard cap created: Signed Spencer Hawes via non-taxpayer MLE; signed Jordan Farmar via biannual exception
Estimated team salary: $79,679,772

Grizzlies
Hard cap created: Signed Vince Carter via non-taxpayer MLE; signed Beno Udrih via biannual exception
Estimated team salary: $75,529,943

Trail Blazers
Hard cap created: Signed Chris Kaman via non-taxpayer MLE; signed Steve Blake via biannual exception
Estimated team salary: $69,322,824

Kings
Hard cap created: Signed Darren Collison via non-taxpayer MLE
Estimated team salary: $75,852,705

Contract Details: LeBron, Deng, Carter, Gasol

July 24 at 10:04am CDT By Chuck Myron

The idea that the Cavs would trade LeBron James sometime during his two-year contract is outlandish, but just in case it happens, the deal includes a 15% trade kicker, according to Mark Deeks of ShamSports. Deeks has updated his salary database with plenty of new information on deals signed within the past few weeks, so we’ll pass along some of his noteworthy findings. All links to go the relevant salary page at ShamSports.

  • Luol Deng, LeBron’s replacement with the Heat, also has a 15% trade kicker, as do new Grizzlies swingman Vince Carter and Knicks signee Jason Smith.
  • The last year of Pau Gasol‘s three-year deal with the Bulls is a player option.
  • The final season of the contract Joe Harris signed with the Cavs is non-guaranteed.
  • Eric Griffin‘s three-year, minimum-salary contract with the Mavs is non-guaranteed, with the exception of a $150K partial guarantee for this coming season.
  • Jodie Meeks‘ deal with the Pistons was originally reported to be more than $19MM, but it actually checks in at $18.81MM.
  • Damjan Rudez will make $3.449MM over the life of his three-year deal with the Pacers, which includes a team option for the final season. Shayne Whittington‘s partial guarantee with the team this year is worth $25K.
  • Russ Smith‘s deal with the Pelicans runs three years at the minimum salary, but only the first season is fully guaranteed. Fellow Pelicans rookie Patric Young‘s two-year deal is non-guaranteed, save for a $55K partial guarantee this year.

Heat, Pacers Interested In Chris Singleton

July 21 at 11:09am CDT By Chuck Myron

The Heat and Pacers are among the teams who’ve shown interest in free agent combo forward Chris Singleton, a source tells Marc J. Spears of Yahoo! Sports (Twitter link). The Wizards declined their fourth-year option last fall on their rookie scale contract with the former 18th overall pick, setting him up for unrestricted free agency this summer.

The 24-year-old has seen his minutes decline sharply each year following his rookie season, from a high of 21.7 per game when he started 51 games in the lockout-shortened 2011/12 campaign to just 10.0 per contest this past season. He notched 3.0 points, 2.2 rebounds and shot 36.8 from three-point range when he did see the court in 2013/14, and his 8.8 PER, while unimpressive, was a career high.

Neither Miami nor Indiana can shell out more than the minimum salary for the client of BDA Sports Management, though by the looks of Spears’ report, it seems there are other NBA clubs with interest who haven’t been identified. It’s nonetheless doubtful that they’d go above the minimum even if they could for the one-time heralded prospect who’s yet to find his way in the NBA.

Pacers Sign Rodney Stuckey

July 21 at 10:59am CDT By Cray Allred

JULY 21ST: The Pacers and Stuckey have made the deal official, the team announced via press release.

“Rodney is a very talented player who can create and score in a variety of ways,” Pacers president of basketball operations Larry Bird said in the team’s statement. “We’re very happy to get a player with his experience and who has made it very clear of his desire to win.”

JULY 16TH: 8:49pm: The contract will be for the veteran’s minimum, tweets Candace Buckner of the Indianapolis Star.

7:09pm: The Pacers and Rodney Stuckey have reached agreement on a one-year contract, reports Sam Amick of USA Today (on Twitter). Indiana quickly targeted Stuckey after incumbent shooting guard Lance Stephenson departed for the Hornets earlier today. Terms of the deal aren’t known yet. Indiana cannot offer more than the veteran’s minimum unless a sign-and-trade can be worked out with Detroit.

Stuckey will move on from the Pistons, where he spent the first seven years of his career. His per-game scoring average of 13.9 in 2013/14 is comparable to that of Stephenson, but the latter’s playmaking ability far exceeds Stuckey’s, who racked up considerably fewer assists and rebounds in Detroit. Still, the Creative Artists Agency client will look to carve out a significant role within the Pacers offense, where they have been short on scoring firepower during a dominant defensive run.

Central Notes: Harris, Gasol, Mirotic, Pacers

July 19 at 2:21pm CDT By Charlie Adams

Cavs second-rounder Joe Harris has been impressing Cleveland team officials during summer league play, writes Terry Pluto of the Plain Dealer. The team can envision signing Harris and using him as a sharpshooter off the bench in a similar role that Mike Miller and James Jones will likely possess, says Pluto. More from the Central..

  • Pau Gasol‘s contract the Bulls will pay him $22,346,280 over three years, tweets Marc Stein of ESPN.com. His first year salary is set at $7,128,000, but it’ll increase to $7,448,760 and $7,769,520 in his second and third seasons, respectively.
  • Both Gasol’s new deal and Nikola Mirotic‘s recent pact for the Bulls will carry a 15% trade kicker, relays Eric Pincus of the Los Angeles Times (via Twitter).
  • In addition to their escalating talks with free agent Aaron Brooks, the Bulls are also eyeing John Lucas III, reports Stein (on Twitter). Lucas has previously spent time in Chicago, having appeared in 51 games over parts of two seasons.
  • Pacers VP of Basketball Operations Peter Dinwiddle was considered a top candidate to land the Grizzlies’ GM job, but he’s opted to retain his current position in Indiana rather than move forward with Memphis, reveals Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports (via Twitter).

Western Rumors: Marshall, Bledsoe, Love

July 19 at 10:37am CDT By Cray Allred

Eric Pincus of The Los Angeles Times tweets that he doesn’t expect Kendall Marshall, whom the Lakers released yesterday, to clear waivers. Here’s more from the Pacific Division:

  • The Lakers were pleasantly surprised to have won their amnesty claim on Carlos Boozer, tweets Bill Oram of The Orange County Register.
  • Dan Bickley of USA Today thinks that Eric Bledsoe should relent on his demands for a five-year, $80MM contract with the Suns, and risks earning a poor public image if he doesn’t.
  • The Warriors commitment to defense is manifesting itself in the team’s unwillingness to give up Klay Thompson in a Kevin Love trade, writes Sam Amick of USA Today. Amick notes that new coach Steve Kerr has prioritized the defensive end in choosing his assistants, and that Love’s inability to reach the players is a black eye among some league executives.
  • New Hornets addition Lance Stephenson tells Candace Buckner of The Indianapolis Star that he’s surprised he didn’t remain with the Pacers“I’m definitely surprised,” said Stephenson. “But I’m happy here. I can definitely help this program. It’s a family here. I’m definitely going to miss Larry Bird. But it’s a business, and I feel like here is more of a family. Let’s go get wins.”

Eastern Notes: Knicks, Wizards, Stuckey

July 18 at 11:33pm CDT By Cray Allred

GM Steve Mills insisted the Knicks never feared they would lose Carmelo Anthony, adding that he thinks the roughly $5MM discount Anthony took over the life of his deal will indeed make a difference for the team, as Mills said during an interview on the MSG network. John DeMarzo of the New York Post rounds up his comments, including remarks in which Mills confirmed earlier reports that the team believes it has too many guards. Mills identified shooting guard as a specific position of overload and pointed to depth at power forward and center as a priority. Here’s more from out East:

  • When Phil Jackson, Knicks owner James Dolan and Dolan’s business partner Irving Azoff were having initial conversations about Jackson joining the Knicks, it was Azoff, the longtime music mogul, who first suggested that Jackson take on the role as team president. Jackson, along with co-author Hugh Delehanty, shared more about his return to the Knicks in an excerpt of his latest book in the New York Daily News.
  • Kevin Seraphin‘s acceptance of the Wizards qualifying offer doesn’t rule out other potential moves for Washington, according to J. Michael of CSNWashington.com (via Twitter). Michael mentions a scoring guard as a remaining priority for the Wizards that could result in another signing.
  • Vincent Goodwill of The Detroit News writes that Rodney Stuckey‘s frustrating tenure with the Pistons was emblematic of the franchise’s instability following the team’s run as a contender up through 2008. If Stuckey can deliver on the promise from early in his career, Goodwill believes the Pacers will have a bargain on their hands.

Chuck Myron contributed to this post.

Central Notes: Love, Allen, Stuckey, Bucks

July 17 at 9:03pm CDT By Alex Lee

The reports are pouring in fast and furious on the negotiations between the Cavaliers and Timberwolves for Kevin Love. While conflicting rumors persist, Ken Berger of CBS Sports simplifies it for us in his latest piece. Quite basically, LeBron James wants Love in Cleveland and Minnesota wants Andrew Wiggins for Love. And LeBron usually gets what he wants. Beyond that, Berger points out that these negotiations are a sign of things to come with regard to the leverage James holds within the Cleveland organization.

Grantland’s Zach Lowe weighs in on the talks as well (via Twitter), suggesting that the Wolves should immediately pull the trigger if Wiggins is on the table. However, as Chris Mannix of Sports Illustrated tweets, the “general feeling” at summer league was that Minnesota would require more than just Wiggins in a deal for their coveted superstar.

Here are some additional notes from the Central division on Thursday night:

  • Mike Miller said in an ESPN Radio appearance that he’s selling Ray Allen on becoming the latest former Heat player to join the Cavaliers, but Allen is still considering retirement and has spoken with multiple teams this month, sources tell Brian Windhorst of ESPN.com.
  • The Pacers stayed in touch with Rodney Stuckey all month, the guard told Candace Buckner of the Indianapolis Star today, seemingly countering a report that made it seem as though the team shied away from him after contacting him early in free agency. Stuckey agreed Wednesday to a one-year deal with Indiana for the minimum.
  • Bucks co-owner Wesley Edens revealed the franchise’s minority share owners on Thursday, a list that did not include Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers, writes Charles F. Gardner of the Journal Sentinel. Edens didn’t rule out potential for Rodgers’ involvement in the franchise, however. The list contains six local names, corresponding with a May report that the ownership duo of Edens and Marc Lasry hoped to add five to ten investors.
  • Jesse Biancarte of Basketball Insiders examines what the loss of Lance Stephenson will mean for the Pacers next season, opining that Indiana has the pieces to maintain their dominance on defense but will struggle to replace the Cincinnati product on the other end of the floor.

Pacers Eye Rodney Stuckey

July 16 at 1:10pm CDT By Chuck Myron

The Pacers have “serious interest” in Rodney Stuckey as they seek to replace Lance Stephenson, reports Marc Stein of ESPN.com (Twitter link). The Pacers reportedly reached out to Rodney Stuckey in the first two days of free agency, but they were nonetheless without plans to pursue him. It appears that Indiana is now ready to go after him, if the team isn’t already making a push for the Leon Rose client.

Stuckey’s days with the Pistons appear to be over after the team renounced its Bird rights to the 28-year-old combo guard and struck deals with Jodie Meeks and D.J. Augustin. The Magic had been poised to make a play for Stuckey, who was reportedly willing to sign with the Warriors for the mid-level exception before Golden State committed most of that exception to Shaun Livingston instead.

The Pacers have reportedly already used most their mid-level on Damjan Rudez and C.J. Miles, and they’re without the biannual exception after using it last year to sign C.J. Watson. That means that Indiana would probably have to work a sign-and-trade with the Pistons to give Stuckey any more than the minimum salary.