According to Jared Zwerling of Bleacher Report, Mike Bibby - who is reportedly well-liked by Spurs coach Gregg Popovich - was invited to San Antonio's training camp and had a good chance of making the team. However, the veteran guard now won't be able to attend because of a foot/heel injury (Twitter link). It's been a bit of a Jazz fest as far as news goes this evening, but here are some other noteworthy links we've gathered up from around the Association:
- Bradford Doolittle of ESPN.com ranks the league's top ten frontcourts (Insiders only).
- Stephen Graham could possibly have an invitation to participate in Bucks camp this fall (Gery Woelfel of the Racine Journal Times via Twitter). There hasn't been any further mention of an official invitation, but we'll look to relay any updates as they surface.
- 76ers rookie head coach Brett Brown doesn't feel inclined to bring along a former head coach as an assistant, notes Keith Pompey of The Philadelphia Inquirer: “I don’t feel with this team that it’s mandatory that I have to surround myself with perspective or wisdom or, you know, an Owl that’s been there, done that…I feel that this year’s team is about development. And I feel like it’s about … teaching, relationships and energy more than NBA wisdom."
- Former Pistons head coach and Lakers assistant John Kuester, however, has been rumored to be a potential candidate for Brown's coaching staff in Philadelphia.
- The Score's Mark Deeks discusses Paul George's max contract extension as well as a potential one for Kings center DeMarcus Cousins. While Deeks understands the logic behind securing George for the long term, he feels that offering the same type of deal to Cousins would be an enormous gamble.
Veteran NBA point guard Mike Bibby is participating in a Spurs mini-camp this week, auditioning for a chance at a contract or camp invite, according to Jared Zwerling of ESPNNewYork.com. Zwerling adds that Mickael Pietrus will also be among the players working out for the Spurs (Twitter links).
It seems the Spurs have yet to start extending camp invites to roster hopefuls. As our page of roster counts shows, the club currently has 14 players under contract, all on guaranteed deals. Teams can carry up to 20 players up until opening night, so I'd expect San Antonio to add a few more players before camp opens.
Whether Bibby or Pietrus will earn one of those spots on the preseason roster remains to be seen. Bibby, 35, didn't appear in an NBA game last season, having last played for the Knicks in 2011/12. Pietrus signed a minimum-salary contract with the Raptors last season, but injury woes and a lack of production limited him to 19 games.
According to Zwerling, Pietrus may have more workouts lined up, but the Spurs appear to be Bibby's only potential suitor at this point.
The movement to prevent a 23-and-under age restriction for Olympic basketball may have taken a hit. The International Olympic Committee has rejected a proposal to increase the number of teams from 12 to 16 and shorten the length of the competition, USA Today's Jeff Zillgitt reports. Many NBA and pro basketball executives around the world believe the Olympics place too much of a strain on their stars, and some of them thought the proposal would have been an acceptable compromise. While we wait to see if the 2016 games are the last to feature rosters reminiscent of the Dream Team, here's the latest from around the NBA:
- Mike Bibby didn't play in the NBA this past season, but the 35-year-old is still trying to get back in the league, as he tells Alex Kramers of Kings.com. Whenever Bibby decides to stop playing, he says he'd like to get into coaching.
- Undrafted center Jack Cooley reportedly drew training camp invitations from more than 10 NBA teams after a strong showing in summer league, but he's decided to sign with Trabzonspor of Turkey, a source tells Sportando's Emiliano Carchia. It's a "substantial" deal, according to Alex Kennedy of HoopsWorld (Twitter link).
- Using the specter of a D-League assignment as a way to threaten first-round pick Shabazz Muhammad into proper behavior demonstrates how Wolves executive Flip Saunders holds an unsophisticated view of the D-League, opines Matt Moore of CBSSports.com.
- Jeff Caplan of NBA.com examines how the Lakers can be better in 2013/14 than they were last season, even after losing Dwight Howard.
Despite a recent report suggesting that a "major shakeup" could be on the way in Phoenix, the Suns don't currently have any free agents on their radar, reports Marc J. Spears of Yahoo! Sports (via Twitter). That includes Mike Bibby, who worked out for the Grizzlies today, and reportedly has workouts lined up with a handful of other clubs.
The Suns have 15 players on their roster, so if they were considering adding a free agent, someone would need to be released to make room. In that case, Diante Garrett or Luke Zeller could be candidates to be cut, since they're on non-guaranteed contracts. However, it seems the team is uninterested in the free agent market, and has no plans to make any coaching changes.
If a "shakeup" is indeed on the way, it could come in the form of a trade, since many players signed this past offseason, including Michael Beasley, become trade-eligible as of this weekend. For now though, it seems as if the Suns are moving forward with the current roster and hoping for a turnaround on the court.
3:28pm: Ronald Tillery of the Memphis Commercial Appeal reports (via Twitter) that while the workout took place, no deal is imminent between Bibby and the Grizzlies. If Memphis decides to add a point guard, it will be so Bayless can play off the ball, says Tillery.
1:03pm: While the Lakers seem to be eyeing virtually every point guard on the market, one name that they haven't been connected to is Mike Bibby. However, Bibby is drawing NBA interest, according to Sam Amick of USA Today. Amick reports that the veteran guard is working out for the Grizzlies today in Phoenix.
With Bibby looking to catch on with a team for the second half of the season, the Grizzlies will be just one of "four or five" clubs that work him out, sources tell Amick. However, the Lakers aren't expected to be one of those teams. Bibby, who made his NBA debut in 1998, spent last season with the Knicks, appearing in 39 games.
While the Grizzlies are happy with starter Mike Conley, the team seems to be considering adding some depth at the point guard position, says Amick. Backup Jerryd Bayless isn't exactly a traditional point guard, and hasn't been as productive so far for the Grizzlies as he was in Toronto last season.
NBA veteran Mike Bibby is still hoping to hook on with an NBA team after being left on the shelf this summer, writes Jorge Sierra of HoopsWorld. The point guard is working out in the Phoenix, Arizona area, playing pick-up games, and waiting for an opportunity to come.
"I'm getting ready for any call," Bibby said. "It's reassuring that Derek Fisher got that call. People are still getting calls right now. It can happen somewhere down the line, I'm not worried about that. I'm just keeping myself ready when that call comes."
Bibby saw his numbers plummet all across the board last season with the Knicks. The 34-year-old admitted that he wasn't in great shape last season and attributed much of it to the lockout. Bibby didn't anticipate having to play in 2011/12 and as a result he didn't get himself in peak condition in an effort to save his body for the next year.
The one-guard struggled in the regular season but saw 23.6 minutes per game in the club's first-round series against the Heat and shot 7-17 from the outside. Agent David Falk says that he is "cautiously optimistic" that his client will get signed between mid-December and mid-January and completely ruled out the possibility of a D-League stint in order to get more exposure.
Let's consolidate all the odds and ends from Sunday night in this post:
- Jared Zwerling of ESPN New York reports, via Twitter, that Mike Bibby likely won't sign with a team before the start of training camps. The veteran point guard does expect to sign somewhere, however, but not the Knicks and we heard yesterday, probably not the Celtics.
- Ben Golliver of CBS Sports provides his offseason report for the Clippers. Golliver says that after decades where the goal was to not screw up their draft, the Clippers were able to employ a more competitive approach of acquiring established veterans to fit around Chris Paul and Blake Griffin.
- Darnell Mayberry of the Oklahoman outlines the roster changes and season outlook for each team in the Northwest division, including the hometown Thunder.
- The Kamenetzky brothers of ESPN Los Angeles discuss via video who has the most to gain and the most to lose on the bolstered roster of the Lakers.
- The staff at HoopsWorld puts together their season preview on the Pacers. All five of their writers selected the Pacers to win the Central Division, a year after finishing second behind the Bulls. Lacking the star power of the Heat, Indiana will need popular breakout candidate Paul George to fulfill his potential if they want to go deep into the playoffs.
- Raptors Lithuanian prospect Jonas Valanciunas injured his left foot, reports the Toronto Sun. After Toronto used the fifth pick in last year's draft on him, Valanciunas enters his first NBA season with a ton of hype. The seven footer was spotted with a walking boot, though all indications are that it is a minor injury.
- Keith Schlosser of the Knicks Journal gives his take on the news that Rasheed Wallace is being considered by the Knicks. If that move comes to fruition, Wallace would be joining a roster full of late 30-somethings. Jason Kidd, in this NBA.com video, seems confident that the supplemental pieces that the team added could put them over the top.
Keyon Dooling's retirement reduced the number of fully guaranteed contracts on the Celtics roster to 13. Though Dionte Christmas and Jamar Smith have small partial guarantees of $237K and $25K, respectively, the team appears to have the flexibility to add another free agent. They still possess their $1.957MM biannual exception, and with Dooling retired and Avery Bradley recovering from right shoulder surgery, they could be in the market for an experienced backup to point guard Rajon Rondo. In the meantime Jason Terry will serve in that capacity, according to A. Sherrod Blakely of CSNNE.com, who believes the former Mav will make the greatest contribution of all the new Celtics this year (Twitter links). Blakely unleashed a series of tweets full of notable Celtics rumors, and we've rounded them up here:
- While Dooling will be missed, Blakely doesn't think the team will go after Derek Fisher or Mike Bibby to replace him (Twitter links).
- Leandro Barbosa and Mickael Pietrus aren't likely to join the Celtics either, Blakely says (Twitter links). Barbosa has indicated a willingness to sign for the minimum with a contender, while Pietrus expressed an interest in returning to Boston, but for the biannual exception instead of the minimum.
- Darko Milicic, who signed a guaranteed one-year minimum deal, is a worthwhile gamble given his low price, Blakely thinks (Twitter link).
- The last we heard on Bradley's recovery was that it might keep him out until mid-December. Blakely says it's possible, although not likely, that he'll be back for the regular season opener, and believes Bradley will eventually retake the starting shooting guard job from Courtney Lee. (All Twitter links).
- Amongst the team's rookies, Jared Sullinger figures to get the most playing time, Blakely tweets.
- The Celtics have "a very good shot" at a championship, but it hinges on the team's health, Blakely opines (Twitter link).
- Kenyon Martin has been linked to the Celtics recently, but he'll require more than the minimum, according to Timberwolves assistant coach Bill Bayno, who says that's why his team isn't pursuing the big man, tweets Darren Wolfson of ESPN 1500 radio.
Mike Bibby is still hoping to catch on with an NBA team within the next few weeks, but he doesn't expect to return to his 2011/12 squad, as Jared Zwerling of ESPNNewYork.com reports. A source close to Bibby tells Zwerling: "We do expect a need for him [with a team] once camp starts or just before, but we don't think it's going to be with the Knicks."
The news comes as no real surprise, considering the Knicks loaded up on point guards this summer, acquiring Raymond Felton in a sign-and-trade and signing Jason Kidd, Pablo Prigioni, and Chris Smith to free agent deals. Despite maintaining a solid assist rate for the Knicks last season, Bibby wasn't productive overall, averaging career lows in minutes (14.3), field-goal percentage (28.2%), and PER (7.8), among other categories.
Still, according to Zwerling, Bibby is healthy and has been preparing to play in the upcoming season. Bibby and brother-in-law Eddie House have been training and working out at Bibby's Arizona home over the summer.
It's been a busy day already for the Knicks, who appear poised to officially announce that they've signed J.R. Smith and waived Renaldo Balkman. As New York looks for its eighth straight win tonight, let's round up a few links that address the impact of the team's latest moves. And don't worry, there's a Jeremy Lin update too….
- Sam Amick of SI.com reports (via Twitter) that Smith will receive $2.3MM for this season and a $2.4MM player option for next year. The numbers are slightly different than what Adrian Wojnarowski reported earlier.
- The addition of Smith doesn't mean the Knicks are done looking for upgrades, tweets Al Iannazzone of Newsday.
- Coach Mike D'Antoni indicated he'll work Smith into the rotation slowly and that Landry Fields will still continue to start at the two guard for now, writes Marc Berman of the New York Post.
- With Baron Davis' return date still up in the air, Howard Beck of the New York Times tweets that the team decided to waive Balkman because they need Mike Bibby to back up Lin.
- In a piece for ESPN.com, CBA guru Larry Coon explains in detail how the Knicks can re-sign both Lin and Fields this summer.