After Stephen Curry delivered the most electrifying one man performance of the 2013 playoffs, Timberwolves fans have been reminded of David Kahn's decision in the 2009 draft to take Jonny Flynn with the sixth overall pick instead of Curry. Darren Wolfson of 1500 ESPN (via Twitter) was reminded today of Kahn's reasoning: the GM was in his first year and got scared by Curry cancelling his workout in Minnesota. At the same time, he fell in love with the Syracuse standout. Here's more from around the Association..
MONDAY, 7:46am: Dooling is still the "big favorite" to earn a spot with the Grizzlies, but the team's search for a guard may continue for a couple more days before a signing occurs, tweets Marc Stein of ESPN.com.
FRIDAY, 10:56am: In addition to Dooling and Flynn, the Grizzlies are also considering Scott Machado, Courtney Fortson, and Sundiata Gaines, according to Chris Vernon of 92.9 FM ESPN in Memphis (Twitter link).
WEDNESDAY, 10:14pm: Gary Washburn of the Boston Globe received a similar text from Dooling, who says he'll know for sure about a deal with Memphis by Sunday (Twitter link).
10:05pm: Dooling texted TNT's David Aldridge to say that he's been in contact with the Grizzlies, but hasn't signed with the team (Twitter link).
7:20pm: The Grizzlies haven't committed to signing Dooling, a source tells Ronald Tillery of the Commercial Appeal. Memphis is also considering Jonny Flynn as the team looks to add a veteran point guard rather than rely on rookie backup Tony Wroten, according to Tillery (Twitter links).
6:31pm: Former New York Post columnist Peter Vecsey reports that the Grizzlies have signed Keyon Dooling for the rest of the season (Twitter link). If the move becomes official, it would mark an end to Dooling's retirement, which he announced in September while with the Celtics. Presumably, he'd have to leave his job as a player development coordinator for the C's, which he assumed after he retired.
Dooling suffered a nervous breakdown over the summer that stemmed from sexual abuse he endured in childhood, as he detailed last year to Jessica Camerato of CSNNE.com and TNT's David Aldridge. Shortly after his retirement, he was linked to the Heat, but denied interest in a return to the league. The 32-year-old guard told Gary Washburn of the Boston Globe he was open to coming back in January and said he informed Celtics coach Doc Rivers he was upping his workout regimen, but announced a few days later that he would not return to the NBA this year.
Boston and Dooling agreed to a $400K buyout of his guaranteed minimum-salary contract, so he's represented a small cap hit for the C's all year despite not having been on the team's roster. Dooling couldn't return to the Celtics unless they waived someone else, but the Grizzlies have two open roster spots, so they could accomodate Dooling if they choose.
Perhaps the most accomplished fourth-year player not to receive a contract extension before the season, it appears Brandon Jennings is preparing for restricted free agency this summer. According to Liz Mullen of the Sports Business Journal (Twitter link), Jennings has parted ways with agent Bill Duffy of BDA Sports Management. It's not clear yet who will be representing Jennings as he approaches free agency, but Duffy indicated that he wishes the Bucks guard "nothing but the best" (Twitter link). Here are a few more Monday odds and ends from around the NBA:
10:50pm: The Lakers are thinking about signing Delonte West, reports Marc Stein of ESPN.com. Still, the Lakers will look at other options, though as Stein points out, the team is at the 15-man roster limit. That's why the Lakers were hesitant to sign Derek Fisher before he went to the Mavs, as L.A. was attemping to trade one of its existing point guards (All Twitter links).
10:19pm: The Lakers have been committed to waiting for Steve Nash to return before making a move, but after a disheartening loss to the Cavs tonight dropped L.A. to 9-13, the Lakers are giving thought to other options at point guard, tweets Ramona Shelburne of ESPNLosAngeles.com. Nash expects to be out at least another two weeks, as we heard earlier today, and last week the Lakers announced Steve Blake would undergo surgery on a torn abdominal muscle that was to have kept him out at least another six to eight weeks.
The Lakers have been going with Chris Duhon and Darius Morris at the point, but they combined for just two points and three assists tonight. Free agent options appear to be limited, as the Wizards, also in need of a point guard, took a pass on Ben Uzoh and Blake Ahearn after working out both of them this weekend. Delonte West, Mike Bibby and Eddie House are among some of the more notable names available. Bibby and House have both played for Lakers coach Mike D'Antoni with other teams, but neither saw much time running the offense.
The trade market could be a more fruitful route, particularly once most free agents who signed this summer become eligible to be traded on Saturday. As part of a package that involves Pau Gasol, the Lakers have been linked to Jose Calderon, who acknowledges that he's on the block. That would represent a drastic move, however, and would probably be overkill if Nash can return later this month. Calderon's $9.7MM salary figure would prevent anyone from acquiring him unless they were willing to give up a lot, as fellow ESPNLosAngeles.com scribe Arash Markazi points out via Twitter, and the Raptors point man has a 10% trade kicker on top of that. While the Lakers may be exploring their options, the team may simply conclude that it must patiently try to sort out its difficulties until Nash returns.
Here are a few of the latest non-NBA links, from the D-League and overseas:
Jonny Flynn has officially signed with the Melbourne Tigers, the Australian team announced today in a press release. Within the release, head coach Chris Anstey called Flynn "possibly the highest credentialed player in the prime of his career to ever play in the NBL."
It was reported yesterday that Flynn had agreed to terms to play in Australia with the Tigers. The former sixth overall pick, who was waived by the Pistons after spending the preseason with the club, will have an NBA opt-out, ESPN.com's Marc Stein confirms (via Twitter). According to Stein, Flynn will be able to come back to the NBA immediately if he receives an offer he likes (Twitter link).
Flynn is still just 23 years old and played reasonably well in part-time action for the Trail Blazers after a deadline deal sent him to Portland last season (5.2 PPG, 3.8 APG, 12.3 PER). As NBA teams start to suffer injuries and experience depth issues, it wouldn't be a surprise to see the former Syracuse star return stateside.
At 2-1, the Warriors have started off what many believe to be a promising season on the right foot, despite losing Brandon Rush to a torn ACL on Friday night. Because it is so early in the season, the Warriors have the good fortune of having some options if they want to replace him, writes Matt Steinmetz of CSN Bay Area.
One reason they may not need personnel reinforcements has the been the surprising play of Carl Landry, who has provided scoring (20 points per game) and toughness off the bench in the team's first three games, writes Marcus Thompson of the Bay Area News Group.
Let's take a look at what else is going on in the NBA on the first Sunday night of November:
The Pistons have officially released camp invitees Terrence Williams and Jonny Flynn, according to Vincent Goodwill of the Detroit News (via Twitter). The cuts leave the Pistons with 15 players under contract.
Both Williams and Flynn were lottery picks in the 2009 draft, but hit free agency a year early after the fourth-year options of their respective rookie contracts weren't picked up by the Rockets last season. While neither player has lived up to expectations since coming into the league, Williams and Flynn had productive stretches as bench players in their three-year careers. Still, it was an uphill battle to earn a roster spot in Detroit, where the Pistons already had 15 guaranteed contract on their books.
If both players clear waivers, they'll become unrestricted free agents, free to sign with any team.
Shams Charania of RealGM had a few interesting tidbits to relay from Bulls camp, writing about how coach Tom Thibodeau personally recruited Nate Robinson, Andre Emmett's fight to earn a contract during training camp and his willingness to sign with the team at any point during the season, and coach Thibodeau's aim to maintain Joakim Noah's minutes during the season. We have quite a few more links to share with news from the Central Division...
OCTOBER 1ST: The Pistons have officially signed Flynn, according to a team release.
Flynn has disappointed with stops in Portland, Minnesota, and Houston, but he's only 23 years old and holds career averages of 9.2 PPG and 3.9 APG. Flynn heads to a Pistons team that appears to have its backcourt in order with Brandon Knight, Rodney Stuckey, Kim English, and Will Bynum.
Our own Luke Adams took a look at possible landing destinations for Flynn earlier this week, naming Detroit as one potential option.