Luol Deng Rumors
April 10 at 10:27am CST By Luke Adams
With just a handful of games left in the 2012/13 regular season, only one postseason club in either conference is locked into its playoff seed -- the East's top team, the Heat, remain a comfortable 10 games up on the second-place Knicks, despite the fact that New York has won 13 consecutive contests. The Bucks aren't locked into that No. 8 seed in the East yet, but they'll likely end up there, meaning last night's game in Miami, in which the Heat beat Milwaukee 94-83, figures to be a playoff preview.
Here's more from around the Eastern Conference:
- When he hits free agency this summer, a long-term contract will be a priority for current Sixers guard Nick Young, as he tells Lang Greene of HoopsWorld.
- Kyle Lowry called his first year with the Raptors frustrating and disappointing, but believes the team has the talent to bounce back next season, writes Doug Smith of the Toronto Star. As Smith notes, Lowry's contract for 2013/14 is mostly non-guaranteed, but after giving up a likely lottery pick for Lowry and trading Jose Calderon, the Raptors are a mortal lock to bring back the former Rocket next season.
- Given Jimmy Butler's emergence, the Bulls should "think long and hard" this offseason about whether to consider shopping Luol Deng, says Nick Friedell of ESPNChicago.com.
- Earlier this week, Heat president Pat Riley suggested that he wants to keep Miami's Big Three intact for years to come and "have one of those 10-year rides." Ira Winderman of the South Florida Sun Sentinel explores Riley's comments in his latest mailbag.
- Pistons coach Lawrence Frank, who may be on the hot seat this summer, expressed some annoyance to Terry Foster of the Detroit News about the way many of his coaching colleagues are criticized.
January 4 at 6:57pm CST By Chuck Myron
It's an active Friday for Chicago. The Bulls zeroed in on their first in-season signing, as they're set to bring Daequan Cook aboard, and they're taking on the Heat in Miami tonight. A win and a Pacers loss could leave them in a tie for first place in the Central Division, even with Derrick Rose still on the shelf. Amid that sort of optimism, here's the latest out of the Windy City.
- The Rockets shopped Cook in trades before waiving him, but couldn't find anyone willing to take on his $3MM salary, Marc Stein of ESPN.com reveals.
- Mark Deeks of ShamSports took to Twitter to break down the ramifications the Cook signing will have on Chicago's space under the $74.307MM hard cap. The Bulls will have $235,917 available if, as expected, Cook inks for the prorated minimum salary, enough for four 10-day contracts. They could instead add another minimum-salary player for the rest of the year starting March 3. A third option is to acquire a player via trade, and the Bulls can now only take back an additional $1,235,916 in a swap, which Deeks believes they'll try to use in a deal that sends out Richard Hamilton.
- Sam Smith of Bulls.com dips into his mailbag to answer reader questions, and says he isn't expecting much movement for the Bulls between now and the trade deadline, particularly regarding Luol Deng, who is "probably as solidly entrenched with the team" as he's ever been. Smith notes that the Bulls were offered high draft choices for Deng last season, but they didn't pursue them aggressively.
- With Cook, a shooter, on his way to Chicago, K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune wonders why the team hasn't given outside-shooting big man Vladimir Radmanovic more playing time. Responding to a question about whether Radmanovic or Nazr Mohammed, both on minimum-salary deals, Deeks says it would complicate the already difficult task the Bulls would have in pulling off a trade, given their proximity to the hard cap (Twitter links).
October 28 at 4:48pm CST By Michael Pina
Here's a look around the league this Sunday afternoon.
October 25 at 10:01pm CST By Ryan Raroque
Darnell Mayberry of NewsOK lists Daniel Orton, DeAndre Liggins, Andy Rautins, and Hollis Thompson as the four Thunder hopefuls looking to earn the team's final roster spot. While he believes that Liggins has the best chance considering the bulk of minutes he's played during the pre-season, Mayberry also considers Orton as a strong candidate because of his potential. He adds that a popular idea would be for Oklahoma City to waive or trade a guaranteed contract in order to keep both Liggins and Orton, although such a possibility seems unlikely at this point. With that aside, you can find more of tonight's miscellaneous links below:
- Former Memphis Tiger Wesley Witherspoon believes that being around the veteran leadership in San Antonio would be a great place to start his career if he makes the team (Jason Smith of The Memphis Edge reports). On another note, Mike Monroe of Spurs Nation writes that Spurs forward Kawhi Leonard isn't worried about his pre-season shooting slump affecting his shot once the regular season starts.
- Fran Blinebury of NBA.com explains why it would be prudent for Oklahoma City to wait on a possible extension for James Harden, most notably to see if he can remain healthy this season and maintain a high level of play.
- Sam Amico of FOX Sports Ohio says that the Cavaliers are expected to send recently-signed D'Aundray Brown to the D-League, even though he would still take up a spot on the team's official season roster. He also speculates that three roster cuts are likely to be decided from a group that includes Jeremy Pargo, Kevin Jones, Luke Harangody, and Micheal Eric.
- Although Luol Deng dealt with a torn ligament in his left wrist last season and ultimately decided against surgery during the summer, the Bulls forward now feels confident enough to play at a high level and said that he hasn't been feeling any pain (Nick Friedell of ESPN Chicago reports).
- Sean Deveney of the Sporting News explains some of the biggest responsibilities that current deputy commissioner Adam Silver will have once he is set to replace David Stern, including television contract negotiations, collective bargaining, European expansion, and development of the D-League.
- Chris Vivlamore of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution engaged in a Q&A with Hawks forward Josh Smith about his expectations this season and the challenges he anticipates for the team. In a separate article, Daniel Christian of Sheridan Hoops discusses five reasons to be optimistic about Atlanta this year.
- Jim Eichenhofer of Hornets.com talks briefly about New Orleans' confidence in the versatility and scoring ability of Hornets rookie Austin Rivers.
October 15 at 8:03pm CST By Michael Pina
Earlier we discussed Andrew Bynum's knee, which has lingered as a legitimate news item longer than Sixers fans would like. Now, here's a look towards other injury situations throughout the league as we head into the regular season, just a short two weeks away.
August 7 at 9:06pm CST By Ryan Raroque
Mark Deeks of ShamSports.com (via Twitter) points out that the Bulls are specifically $758,642 below the luxury tax apron and that the league minimum salary for sophomore players is $762,195. This definitely factors into the situation of Malcolm Thomas, who put on a standout performance as a member of their summer league roster and more importantly is entering his second year in the league. Deeks still doesn't think that Chicago is willing pay the tax, adding that the team isn't in any rush to make moves that would incidentally put them over the apron. Here are more of tonight's links from around the NBA...
- Matt Moore of CBS Sports gives the Bobcats a grade of "C" for their work this offseason.
- Earl K. Sneed of NBA.com talks about the plenty of backcourt options that the Mavericks have for the upcoming season.
- Australia's David Andersen hopes that Wednesday's game against Team USA is enough to make an impression as he hopes for an opportunity to return to the NBA, writes Sean Deveney of the Sporting News. The 6'11 forward/center played in Italy last year and was a member of the Hornets during the 2010-11 season. Andersen says he will continue to play in Europe if he doesn't receive an offer from an NBA team.
- Chris Bernucca of Sheridan Hoops examines the top 20 remaining free agents and groups them by position.
- Brian T. Smith of the Salt Lake Tribune tweets that the Jazz are expected to re-engage in talks with free agent Josh Howard soon.
- Brian Kamenetzky of ESPN LA clarifies that although the Lakers are interested in Jodie Meeks, the shooting guard isn't quite open to signing for the veteran's minimum. Also, Kamenetzky notes that while the team has placed a priority on adding a backcourt or wing player, they won't use their mini-mid level exception to overpay for a player they feel isn't worth that much. Earlier today, Brian joined his brother Andy to discuss some names in free agency that are worth considering, including Carlos Delfino, Tracy McGrady, and Terrence Williams in addition to Meeks.
- According to Ian Whittell of ESPN Chicago, Luol Deng has made it clear that he does not plan to have surgery to repair injured ligaments in his left wrist before he reports toBulls training camp.
- In a brief Q&A with fans, Ira Winderman of the South Florida Sun Sentinel said that Heat forward Udonis Haslem may see a decrease in playing time but will still play quality minutes, unrestricted free agent Carlos Delfino is not on Miami's radar and will probably end up returning to Milwaukee, and that there weren't many other options in filling out the roster other than offering a minimum salary to Dexter Pittman.
- Alex Kennedy of HoopsWorld looks at the Hawks as a dark horse candidate to land Dwight Howard. Kennedy mentions that aside from Dwight being an Atlanta native, the team currently has enough cap space to offer a maximum contract next summer and two of Howard's closest friends, Josh Smith and Anthony Morrow, are members of the team. On another note, Yannis Koutroupis of HoopsWorld briefly caught up with Arron Afflalo to talk about his workouts this summer and the expectations for the Nuggets next season.
- When asked if this was this year's Olympic Games are the last that he'll be participating in, Lakers guard Kobe Bryant replied, "This is it" (ESPN's Marc Stein tweets).
- HoopsHype cites two sources who say that the Timberwolves' 2012 second round pick Robbie Hummel (58th overall) is close to an agreement to play for Obradoiro of the Spanish ACB league.
June 29 at 3:19pm CST By Luke Adams
Eight years ago today, the Rockets made one of the biggest trades in team history, sending Steve Francis, Cuttino Mobley, and Kelvin Cato to the Magic in exchange for Tracy McGrady, Juwan Howard, Tyronn Lue, and Reece Gaines. GM Daryl Morey and the Rockets may have been looking to make a similarly big splash this June, but draft day came and went without a major trade from Houston. Still, if nothing else, the Rockets accumulated a ton of talent Thursday night, drafting Jeremy Lamb, Royce White, and Terrence Jones with their three first-round picks.
Here are a few more Friday afternoon odds and ends from around the NBA:
- Appearing on ESPN 1000 in Chicago, Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau said he doesn't expect Luol Deng to require wrist surgery and thinks he'll be ready for the start of the season. ESPNChicago.com has the details.
- Jason Quick of the Oregonian expects the Raptors, Timberwolves, and Cavs to be among the Blazers' strongest competitors for Nicolas Batum (Twitter link).
- With rumors swirling that the Raptors will make a big push to sign Steve Nash, SI.com's Zach Lowe explains why the pairing makes some sense.
- Brandon Jennings continues to hint that he's amenable to a long-term extension with the Bucks, says Charles F. Gardner of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.
- Tim Kawakami of the San Jose Mercury News takes an extensive look at what to expect from the Warriors in the coming weeks.
- In spite of a report suggesting Deron Williams is leaning toward re-signing with the Nets, Dirk Nowitzki still think it's "50-50" between the Nets and Mavs, as Jeff Caplan of ESPNDallas.com writes.
- CSKA Moscow president Andrei Vatutin confirmed to Sports.ru that he expects Alexey Shved to make the leap to the NBA this summer (translation via Sportando). The Rockets, Hawks, Grizzlies, and Thunder are among the teams said to have some interest in the Russian guard.
- Per a press release, GM Rob Hennigan has made two more additions to the Magic front office, hiring Scott Perry as the vice president and assistant GM, and Matt Lloyd as an assistant GM.
June 29 at 12:46am CST By Luke Adams
Another NBA draft is in the books, and once again, we're reminded that no matter how many draft rumors we read, and how many mock drafts we run through, we have no idea what will happen on draft night. While the latest version of Hoops Rumors' own mock draft looked okay a couple days ago, you can count our accurate picks on one hand. Be sure to check out the complete draft results for a rundown of every pick and trade from Thursday night, but with the draft behind us, we're looking ahead to free agency. Here are a few post-draft odds and ends from around the Association:
- Reports continue to suggest the Raptors will be major players in the Steve Nash sweepstakes, as Alex Kennedy of HoopsWorld tweets that Toronto will make a "hard push" for the point guard.
- Although they didn't make a big splash on draft night, the Lakers will continue to explore major deals, tweets Mike Bresnahan of the L.A. Times. "We'll try to hit a home run," said GM Mitch Kupchak. "We always try to hit a home run."
- Kings president Geoff Petrie says Jason Thompson is still the club's top priority in free agency, tweets Jason Jones of the Sacramento Bee.
- Bulls GM Gar Forman insists Chicago wasn't "actively shopping" Luol Deng and other core pieces this month, writes Scott Powers of ESPNChicago.com.
- The Rockets will be targeting centers in free agency, GM Daryl Morey tells Jonathan Feigen of the Houston Chronicle (Twitter link).
June 27 at 10:39pm CST By Alex Lee
Earlier today we heard that the Magic general manager Rob Hennigan spoke with the media and addressed the plethora of issues he has on his plate in his first few weeks on the job. Following Hennigan's availability, Brian Schmitz of the Orlando Sentinel put together a comprehensive story on the rapid rate of change with which the Magic have overhauled their organization. By Schmitz's count, the Magic have dispatched of 17 important pieces of the organization since December. Starting as early as tomorrow night's draft, it is Orlando roster's turn for a makeover.
Here are some some odds and ends from around the NBA on this Wednesday night:
June 26 at 11:07pm CST By Ryan Raroque
According to Alex Kennedy of HoopsWorld, the general consensus around the league is that Ray Allen will join the Heat next year (Twitter link). Since the team will be about $2MM above the tax apron, the most that Miami would be able to offer would be the mini-mid level exception of $3MM. Here's more of tonight's miscellaneous links, including Tyreke Evans, Baron Davis, and the Bulls...
- According to James Ham of the Cowbell Kingdom, Tyreke Evans has not been approached by management of an impending deal and that Kings GM Geoff Petrie has actually been conducting private workouts with the 6'6'' combo guard. Those close to Evans feel that this is a positive sign with regards to his future with the franchise, as Petrie had never taken this type of hands-on approach with Tyreke during his first three years with the team. Jason Jones of the Sacramento Bee tweeted that Evans will also attend the Las Vegas Summer League.
- Even after suffering a gruesomely debilitating knee injury in this year's playoffs, Baron Davis still remains confident that he will return to basketball eventually and would love to return to the Knicks. Kristie Ackert of the NY Daily News caught up with the 33-year-old point guard at a youth basketball clinic on Tuesday night, learning that Baron remains unsure of when he'll be able to begin rehab after undergoing surgery to repair tears in his right patellar tendon, MCL, and ACL last month.
- Neil Hayes of the Chicago Sun-Times thinks that the Bulls will refrain from making significant roster changes any time soon. Chicago has been linked as a possible destination for Brandon Roy, and there have been several rumblings about the team shopping Luol Deng as a means of getting into the lottery on draft night.
- Eric Koreen of the National Post gives more background on the Raptors' former lottery selection, Jonas Valanciunas. Mike Ganter of the Toronto Sun elaborated on the team's excitement regarding the 6'11'' center's potential.
- Eddie Sefko of SportsDay DFW does not believe the draft will have any implications on how the Mavericks feel about their chances to land Deron Williams.
- Jeff Goodman of CBS Sports presents an elaborate system in which he rates the decision making of current NBA GMs with regards to the draft.