This week’s Amico Report from Sam Amico has been published at FOX Sports Ohio, and it features a few rumors and rumblings from around the NBA. Let’s check in on Amico’s latest updates….
- Jimmer Fredette and Omer Asik are among the potential trade candidates “generating whispers” around the league, says Amico. He adds that practically every Sixer, besides the team’s two 2013 lottery picks (Nerlens Noel and Michael Carter-Williams), could also be available.
- One GM tells Amico that there’s “strong league-wide interest” in DeMar DeRozan, though the Raptors don’t seem too interested in anything that’s been offered.
- When James Johnson was waived today by the Hawks, I speculated that he could explore overseas options, but Amico suggests there are a few NBA teams with Johnson on their radars.
- With the Hawks expected to keep either Royal Ivey or Shelvin Mack as their third point guard, the player that gets cut will likely be grabbed by another NBA club, according to Amico.
- While no teams have stepped up with a commitment to him yet, free agent guard Richard Hamilton is “drawing loads of interest,” writes Amico.
Let's round up a few Tuesday morning items from around the Southeast Division….
Just as international standouts like Gigi Datome, Vitor Faverani and Pero Antic have signed in the NBA this summer, several players who spent last season in the NBA will wind up overseas. We have the latest on a few more who could join them, and a rare player who turned down the chance at NBA stardom:
- A day after it seemed like Olimpia Milano of Italy would go after Shelvin Mack, the club has shifted its focus to A.J. Price, reports La Gazzetta dello Sport (translation via Sportando's Emiliano Carchia). Price, a free agent following his one-year deal with the Wizards last season, is more readily available than Mack, who wants to stay in the NBA even if his non-guaranteed contract with the Hawks doesn't last.
- Mens Sana, another Italian team, is targeting Darius Johnson-Odom, according to Carchia. The Lakers took Johnson-Odom with the 55th pick in the 2012 draft, and he appeared in four games with the purple-and-gold last season, mixed in with stints in the D-League and in Russia with Spartak St. Petersburg.
- Milos Teodosic reportedly turned down an offer from the Grizzlies last month, preferring to pursue the chance to stay in Russia, and CSKA Moscow confirmed on the team website today that he will remain with them (Carchia again with the translation).
Trail Blazers assistant David Vanterpool appears to have become the leading candidate in the Sixers head coaching search, according to Gary Washburn of the Boston Globe. Most reports have cited Brett Brown and Michael Curry as the front-runners, but it seems there are still several hopefuls who could emerge with the job. We passed along news from Washburn earlier today on the continuing possibility of a Rajon Rondo trade to the Pistons, and here's more from the Globe scribe as we round up the morning's news from around the NBA:
- The Knicks and Grizzlies have reportedly been in talks with Delonte West, but the Knicks appear to be out, and according to Washburn, no team has shown serious interest.
- The additions of Jrue Holiday and Tyreke Evans make for a crowded backcourt in New Orleans, but Eric Gordon is glad to have his new Pelicans teammates, he tells Washburn.
- Clippers boss Doc Rivers didn't make an offer to Antawn Jamison when they met for dinner last night, but the Clippers and Jamison's reps plan to talk soon, reports Ramona Shelburne of ESPNLosAngeles.com.
- The Hawks waived DeShawn Stevenson on Friday, and in the likely event that he clears waivers and hits free agency, he'd like to sign with the Heat, according to a pair ofdispatches from his Twitter account.
- Shelvin Mack appears in a tenuous position with the Hawks, since his contract is non-guaranteed and he plays the same position as Jeff Teague and first-round pick Dennis Schröder. If the Hawks waive Mack, he'll be the primary point guard target for Olimpia Milano of Italy, Enea Trapani of Sportando reports.
- Elston Turner has reached an agreement to become an assistant coach for the Grizzlies, a source tells Chris Haynes of CSNNW.com. The defensively minded Turner also spoke about joining the Timberwolves staff.
- Stefhon Hannah has signed to play with Juve Caserta in Italy, the team announced (translation via Sportando's Emiliano Carchia). Hannah worked out for the Knicks this summer, and spent two weeks last fall in training camp with the Warriors.
The buzz is back in Charlotte, or at least, it is in one sense. The floundering Bobcats will shed their moniker dedicated to their former owner and their day-glow orange jerseys and become the Hornets in 2014/15. Here's a look at the latest out of the Southeast..
- The Heat dropped Mike Miller's salary by using the amnesty clause, but their real tax test is still ahead of them, writes Ira Winderman of the Sun Sentinel. If a proven veteran with an outsized contract is put on the market at the deadline, Winderman wonders if the club will take the plunge by packaging smaller pieces such as Joel Anthony, Udonis Haslem, and Shane Battier to get a deal done.
- One reader asks Winderman if the Heat still have room in their rotation for another upgrade this winter. With Chris Andersen, Chris Bosh, LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, Mario Chalmers, Ray Allen, Battier, Norris Cole, and possibly Haslem, there doesn't seem to be another rotation spot available.
- The Hawks appear to be overloaded at the one-guard position after re-signing Jeff Teague and drafting Dennis Schroder, but GM Danny Ferry believes that there will still be a place for guard Shelvin Mack, writes Robby Kalland of Peachtree Hoops.
The Southeast Division champion Heat have plenty of time to chill in advance of their second-round opener, which won't be until Monday. The division's other playoff team is engaged in a much tougher first-round fight than Miami endured, as the Hawks are batting the Pacers in Game 5 tonight with the series tied 2-2. There's news on both the Heat and Hawks tonight, along with more from the Southeast:
- A pair of head coaching candidates are lined up for interviews with the Bobcats next week. TNT's David Aldridge reports, via Twitter, that the team will sit down with former Suns coach Alvin Gentry, while Marc J. Spears of Yahoo! Sports tweets that Elston Turner will also interview for the job. Turner served as an assistant under Gentry in Phoenix.
- When Shelvin Mack signed with the Hawks in March for the rest of the season, the deal included a team option for next season, reports Chris Vivlamore of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution (Twitter link). It's probably for the minimum salary.
- LeBron James appears to be a shoo-in for the MVP award, and it's likely he'll officially receive the honor on Sunday, tweets Ira Winderman of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel. He has a chance to become the first unanimous selection for the award, and Chris Tomasson of Fox Sports Florida hears all three votes from Oklahoma City went to James instead of Kevin Durant.
While there are no games on the NBA docket tonight, there are still plenty of news items to pass along. Here are some odds and ends from around the league:
- Shelvin Mack has finally found a home in Atlanta, writes NBA.com's Jon Cooper. Mack, who re-signed with the Hawks after the expiration of his second 10-day contract on March 26, has received a bump in minutes of late and has responded with a handful of solid performances.
- Along with their own first round pick, which figures to be high, the Suns will also have another selection in round one – either the Lakers pick if they miss the playoffs or the Heat's pick if L.A. sneaks in. Jay Dieffenbach of AzCentral takes a look at the top, middle and back of the past four NBA draft's to give Suns fans an idea of what they should expect.
- Jazz big man Derrick Favors has made the most of the increased playing time that has resulted from Enes Kanter's season-ending injury, writes Steve Luhm of The Salt Lake Tribune. According to Luhm, Favors is also completely settled in as a member of the Jazz after being dealt to Utah two years ago as a teenager.
- Here is a transcript of a J.R. Smith interview on ESPN Radio New York, courtesy of SportsRadioInterviews.com, within which Smith details the keys to his breakout season with the Knicks. Smith is the owner of a $2.93MM player option this offseason. If declined, he will become a free agent coming off a career year.
- In HoopsWorld's NBA PM column, Bill Ingram writes that it won't be a surprise if Dirk Nowitzki's patience runs out should the Mavericks strike out once again this offseason. Nowitzki has repeatedly professed his loyalty to the Dallas organization, despite the dismantling of the 2010-11 title team and the disappointment of what was supposed to be a huge summer in 2012. The Mavs are again ideally positioned to make an impact this summer, but it remains to be seen what players make it to free agency.
Following the expiration of his second 10-day contract, the Hawks have re-signed Shelvin Mack for the remainder of the season, according to Chris Vivlamore of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution (via Twitter). Vivlamore had reported yesterday that the two sides were in talks about a rest-of-season deal for Mack.
Mack, 23, had his best game with the Hawks in last night's loss to the Pacers, recording 10 points, four assists, and a pair of rebounds to go along with two three-pointers. Since joining the Hawks following stints with the Wizards and Sixers, Mack has appeared in nine of the club's 12 games.
With Mack now under contract for the rest of 2012/13, the Hawks are at the maximum 15 guaranteed contracts, meaning we likely won't see any more roster moves from the club before season's end.
As our 10-day contract tracker shows, Mack is the ninth player this season to be signed for the season following two 10-day deals with a club.
The Hawks are scheduled to play the Pacers in Indiana tonight, and for Shelvin Mack, it will be the last game he's eligible for under his second 10-day contract with Atlanta. However, according to Chris Vivlamore of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, the team is in talks with Mack to re-sign him for the season when his 10-day deal expires.
Since joining the Hawks, Mack has appeared in eight of the club's 11 games, though he has played five minutes or less in most of those contests, averaging just 1.6 PPG and 0.9 APG. Still, the 23-year-old's eight appearances for Atlanta exceed the amount of games he played for the Wizards (seven) and Sixers (four) earlier this season.
Signing Mack for the season would ensure that the Hawks have 15 players on guaranteed contracts, leaving no room to make any other late-season additions without waiving someone.
The Hawks announced via press release that they have re-signed Shelvin Mack to a second ten-day contract. The 6-foot-3, 215-pound point guard has appeared in five games for the Hawks, totaling eight points, four rebounds and three assists in 30 total minutes.
The Hawks are the 23-year-old's third NBA team this season. He was with the Sixers on a pair of 10-day contracts, but Philadelphia opted not to keep him for the rest of the year after he totaled just seven minutes during stay there. The Wizards, who drafted him 34th overall in 2011, waived him at the end of training camp and brought him back on Christmas.
The Butler product averaged 5.3 points and 3.3 assists in 20.1 minutes per game in seven contests this year for Washington but they dropped him in January, just before his contract would have become guaranteed for the rest of the season.