Toure’ Murry Rumors

Eastern Rumors: Stoudemire, Knicks, Pistons

March 21 at 2:59pm CDT By Chuck Myron

Amar’e Stoudemire envisions remaining with the Knicks organization beyond his playing career, as we noted last night. Still, the 31-year-old hopes he doesn’t leave the court anytime soon, telling Bleacher Report’s Jared Zwerling that he wants to “play until I can’t walk any more.” Stoudemire says he wants to stay on the Knicks roster, which is indication that he intends to opt in for next season. That wouldn’t be at all surprising, but it sounds he’d also like to re-sign with the club in the summer of 2015. Whether the Knicks will have mutual interest remains to be seen, of course. Here’s more from the Eastern Conference:

Knicks Links: Dolan, Carmelo, Jackson

March 18 at 6:31pm CDT By Ryan Raroque

Knicks owner James Dolan joined Michael Kay and Don La Greca on The Michael Kay Show on ESPN New York 98.7 FM earlier today, and when asked about the team’s 2013/14 season, the Knicks owner responded that he’s been “horrified” (Neil Best of Newsday relays via Twitter). New York hopes that Phil Jackson‘s stewardship as president of basketball operations will bring a significant step towards success, as Dolan likened hiring Jackson to “…bringing in Albert Einstein to do your math homework.”

Later on during his radio appearance, the Knicks owner also reiterated that Jackson has full power over basketball decisions. The most important decision arguably involves Carmelo Anthony‘s future, and interestingly enough, Dolan added that if Jackson were to allow Carmelo to leave this summer, he’d give his blessing: “It’s (Phil’s) decision, that’s my agreement with him” (Twitter links via ESPN New York’s Ian Begley).

Here’s the latest out of the Big Apple, including more from Begley:

  • When he had been tied to the potential GM opening in Seattle last year, Jackson previously convinced Steve Kerr to become the team’s head coach; those plans fell through once the purchase agreement of the Kings fell apart, reports Adrian Wojnarwoski of Yahoo Sports.
  • Dolan attempted to dispel speculation that Jackson would eventually coach the Knicks, telling Kay: ”At the moment, it’s not in the cards.”  
  • Based on his early assessment of the roster, Jackson reportedly likes Carmelo, Tyson Chandler, Iman Shumpert, and Cole Aldrich, a source tells Begley. Jackson also likes the youth of Tim Hardaway Jr. and Toure’ Murry.
  • Jackson also dropped in on The Michael Kay Show later on, saying that there’s “hope and strong reason” that Carmelo would re-sign with the Knicks.
  • Per source, Jackson is strongly committed to implementing the triangle offense and will shape the roster with that in mind, adds Begley.
  • Steve Mills sat silently for more than 45 minutes during Jackson’s introductory press conference, notes Peter Botte of the New York Daily News. Per Botte, NBA sources initially expected Jackson to consider bringing in another general manager to handle day-to-day work with Mills, specifically involving trade calls and talks with agents.
  • Dolan told Michael Kay that his relationship with former Knicks GM Isiah Thomas doesn’t involve discussions about basketball, relays Frank Isola of the New York Daily News.

D-League Notes: Mavs, Warriors, Murry

February 1 at 12:44pm CDT By Cray Allred

The D-League is producing more and more success stories, and Terrence Williams hopes to be the next to benefit from showcasing his talents there, writes Gino Pilato of D-League Digest. Williams has a 50-point game in his pocket, and hasn’t scored fewer than 20 points over his last four games. The NBA veteran has struggled to earn a roster spot or consistent playing time since showing some promise in 78 games as a rookie with the Nets in 2009/10. While his athleticism has never been in doubt, Williams now says he is in a better place mentally: “It’s unfortunate that I’m here, but it is fortunate for me to be humbled. I needed this.” Here is all of the recent D-League movement from around the league:

  • The Mavs have assigned both Shane Larkin and Ricky Ledo to their D-League affiliate Texas Legends, per a press release from the team. Ledo is moving back down less than 24 hours from his recent call-up, and Larkin is likely only being moved for a one-game stint.
  • The Knicks’ PR account tweeted the announcement that Toure’ Murry has been recalled from the D-League. Since playing 27 minutes in a December loss to the Raptors, the rookie guard averaged just 8.9 minutes per contest in January, as limits to J.R. Smith and Raymond Felton‘s playing time due to performance and injury, respectively, were relaxed.
  • The Warriors are expected to send both MarShon Brooks and Kent Bazemore to the D-League, according to Marc J. Spears of Yahoo! Sports (via Twitter). Brooks came to the Warriors in the recent trade for Jordan Crawford, and Bazemore has been a end-of-the-bench player in his two years with the club.

Atlantic Notes: Rondo, Bargnani, Blue

January 31 at 1:15pm CDT By Chuck Myron

Rajon Rondo says he hasn’t put much thought into the notion of becoming an unrestricted free agent in 2015, but it nonetheless intrigues him like “college recruitment” did, as he told reporters, including Gary Washburn of the Boston Globe (Twitter link). Rondo recently indicated he’d like to remain with the Celtics long-term, but it doesn’t sound like it’s a certainty he’ll end up doing that. Here’s more from the Atlantic Division:

  • Knicks coach Mike Woodson is comfortable with traditional lineups and says that’s part of the reason the team traded for Andrea Bargnani this past summer, observes Marc Berman of the New York Post. Still, Woodson isn’t so sure he’ll stray from small-ball even when Bargnani returns from an elbow injury.
  • The Celtics will assign 10-day signee Vander Blue to the D-League, Danny Ainge says, according to A. Sherrod Blakely of CSNNE.com (Twitter link). Unless they merely plan to send him down for tonight’s game and let him go, since today’s final day of his contract, this appears to signal that the C’s will give him another 10-day deal, though there’s still no decision about that, Blakely notes (on Twitter).
  • The Knicks have sent Toure’ Murry to the D-League, the team announced via Twitter. Murry will play with the Erie BayHawks tonight and return to the Knicks on Saturday, the team also tweets.
  • The Blazers have dropped Dorell Wright from their rotation, but he’s not pouting, and he’s still glad he signed with Portland this summer after spending last season with the Sixers, as he tells Joe Freeman of The Oregonian“I’d rather be here, winning, out the rotation right now and back in the rotation later, than in Philly, cold, muggy and ugly,” Wright said. “I’ll take this any day.”
  • Khalif Wyatt and the Guangdong Southern Tigers have parted ways, according to Sportando’s Emiliano Carchia. The shooting guard spent camp with the Sixers. Royal Ivey, who spent last year with the Sixers, is replacing him.

D-League Moves: Gaines, Wizards, Knicks

January 30 at 5:00pm CDT By Chuck Myron

Sundiata Gaines is headed to the D-League, a source tells Gino Pilato of D-League Digest. The three-year NBA veteran has appeared in 11 games with Besiktas Milangaz in Turkey this year and was in camp with the Pacers in the fall of 2012. The 6’1″ guard’s most memorable contribution to the NBA was a buzzer-beater for the Jazz in 2010, though his best season was in 2011/12, when he started 12 games for the Nets. Here are more comings and goings from the D-League:

Knicks Rumors: Carmelo, Aldrich, Murry, Tyler

January 29 at 12:39pm CDT By Chuck Myron

The Knicks earned a measure of revenge Tuesday night for their 41-point loss to the Celtics earlier this season, turning the tables in a 26-point victory. Still, the Knicks are a half-game out of the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference, and mystery surrounds the matter of where Carmelo Anthony will play next season. There’s more on that amid the latest from Madison Square Garden.

  • Anthony brushed off inquiries on Tuesday about a weekend report suggesting he’d like to join the Bulls, cutting off a reporter in the middle of a question that seemingly was to be about whether he’d ever considered playing in Chicago. Anthony did allow for a full question about whether he had a relationship with Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau, but last year’s scoring champ replied that he didn’t, as Patrick Finley of the Chicago Sun-Times observes.
  • The Knicks have assigned Cole Aldrich, Toure’ Murry and Jeremy Tyler to the D-League, the team announced via Twitter. All three will practice today with the Erie BayHawks, who are spending the next few days at the Knicks training facility. The Knicks plan to recall them tomorrow, the team also tweets.
  • The BayHawks also spent a break in their schedule last season working at the facility, and that’s when New York assigned Amar’e Stoudemire, Chris Copeland and James White to join the BayHawks as they practiced, notes Keith Schlosser of Ridiculous Upside. Schlosser didn’t count on the Knicks making similar assignments this year, but New York doesn’t play again until Thursday night, so it doesn’t sound like Aldrich, Murry or Tyler will miss any time for the big club.

Potential Options For The Knicks’ Frontcourt

November 6 2013 at 1:10pm CDT By Luke Adams

The Knicks announced today that former Defensive Player of the Year Tyson Chandler suffered a small non-displaced fracture of the right fibula during last night’s game against the Bobcats. Chandler won’t require surgery, but is expected to miss the next four to six weeks, according to the team (Twitter links). A six-week timetable would force Chandler out of action for about 20 games, and the Knicks’ frontcourt may not be built to ride out that stretch.

Andrea Bargnani has struggled mightily during his first few games with the team and isn’t a strong rebounder even when he’s playing well. Amar’e Stoudemire and Kenyon Martin are playing under minute restrictions, and would have to be considered strong injury risks if they exceeded those limits, given their respective ages and health histories. New York is also carrying Cole Aldrich, but he has yet to play a single minute for the club, so leaning on him heavily probably isn’t realistic.

The Knicks acquired Jeremy Tyler‘s D-League rights yesterday, and it’s clear the team has a fondness for him. But according to Marc Berman of the New York Post, Tyler, who is recovering from a knee injury, is probably another three or four weeks away from game action himself, so he’s not a short-term solution.

The predicament provides a pretty clear example of why the Knicks’ decision to keep Chris Smith on the roster over a player like Ike Diogu or Josh Powell was so widely questioned. Like Aldrich, Smith has yet to appear in a game for the Knicks, and it’s unlikely he’ll ever carve out a role in a crowded backcourt that will welcome back his older brother J.R. Smith this weekend. Nonetheless, Chris’ non-guaranteed contract became fully guaranteed when he made the team’s opening night roster, so it’s not clear if the team would cut him to sign a big man.

As Ian Begley of ESPN New York notes (via Twitter), coach Mike Woodson indicated today on ESPN Radio that he’ll rely more on small ball while Chandler is out. But Begley also suggests (via Twitter) that he expects the Knicks to sign a free agent, singling out Diogu as a player the club liked in the preseason. New York would have to release a player from its 15-man roster to clear a spot, but it doesn’t necessarily have to be the younger Smith. Toure Murry, who also looked impressive in October, is on a non-guaranteed contract, so the team would only have to eat a small fraction of his salary if he were released now.

While the Knicks may prefer to sign a player they’re familiar with, like Diogu, a veteran free agent is also a possibility. Louis Amundson recently hit the open market after being cut by the Clippers, while July amnesty victims like Tyrus Thomas and Drew Gooden are also available. The most interesting name on the free agent market might be Jason Collins, who reportedly drew some interest from the Knicks in the offseason and is said to be in excellent shape. Collins is the type of experienced veteran who could immediately contribute and wouldn’t expect or require major minutes when Chandler returns.

The Knicks are off to a slow start this season, sitting with a 1-3 record despite playing three of their first four games at Madison Square Garden. You can make the case that, outside of Carmelo Anthony, no player is more indispensable to New York than Chandler, so the next several weeks will be pivotal. If the Knicks can tread water without their starting center, a top-five seed in the East is still within their sights. If not, the team could find itself fighting for a playoff spot in the second half.

Knicks Rumors: Chris Smith, Murry, Tyler

October 25 2013 at 8:01pm CDT By Chuck Myron

Chris Smith wasn’t among the five players whom the Knicks waived today, so he’s set to remain with the team as it begins the regular season. Coach Mike Woodson has acknowledged that the presence of J.R. Smith, Smith’s brother, would help Chris make the opening-night roster, and while Smith agrees, he feels he would be on the roster regardless of whether his brother were there.

“Did it help me? Of course,” Chris said to reporters, including Ian Begley of ESPNNewYork.com, about the family connection (Twitter link). Still, he added that, “I feel like I earned my position on the team.”

Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports doesn’t buy the notion that Chris would have made the team on his own merits, arguing (on Twitter) that the deal was sealed when J.R. re-signed with the team this summer. Here’s more on the blue-and-orange, via Begley’s Twitter account unless otherwise noted:

  • Woodson said Smith and Toure Murry will spend time on assignment to the Erie BayHawks, the D-League affiliate of the Knicks.
  • Woodson said the team waived Jeremy Tyler because of a need for healthy bodies. Tyler is out as he recovers from foot surgery, though Woodson added that the team will continue to keep tabs on him. The Knicks likely won’t be able to use their D-League affiliate to do so, however. The Santa Cruz Warriors own Tyler’s D-League rights since that was the last D-League team he played for, as Marc Berman of the New York Post points out on Sulia.
  • The Knicks kept Cole Aldrich instead of Ike Diogu because Aldrich is younger, bigger and a true center, Woodson also said.

Knicks Waive Five Players

October 25 2013 at 12:50pm CDT By Luke Adams

12:50pm: The Knicks have officially released C.J. Leslie, Josh Powell, and Ike Diogu, as well as Chris Douglas-Roberts and Jeremy Tyler, according to the team (Twitter link). So Chris Smith, Toure Murry, and Cole Aldrich have snagged the three open roster spots.

Tyler’s deal reportedly included a $100K guarantee, so the Knicks will owe both him and Leslie some money.

12:22pm: The Knicks have also cut Leslie, according to Zwerling (via Twitter). While the move had been telegraphed over the last few days, it’s still somewhat surprising, since nearly half of the rookie’s first-year salary was guaranteed.

Zwerling adds that Aldrich appears to have locked up a roster spot, meaning Smith, Tyler, and Murry are likely vying for the final two openings.

11:16am: The Knicks have begun to trim their roster down from the 20-man preseason maximum, according to Jared Zwerling of Bleacher Report, who tweets that the club has released Josh Powell and Ike Diogu. The pair of cuts leaves New York with 18 players under contract, so three more will need to be released by Monday.

Ian Begley of ESPNNewYork, Al Iannazzone of Newsday, and Zwerling all hear that the Knicks are going young with their last few open roster spots. According to both Begley and Iannazzone (Twitter links), Toure Murry, Chris Smith, and Jeremy Tyler are likely to make the regular season roster. Presumably, that would mean that the Knicks would waive Cole Aldrich, C.J. Leslie, and Chris Douglas-Roberts, though Begley adds (via Twitter) that it’s not clear if the club will be making all its moves today.

As for Powell and Diogu, neither player appeared in an regular season NBA game in 2012/13, but they earned camp invites from the Knicks after working out for the team this fall. New York won’t be on the hook for any salary for either player, since they were on non-guaranteed contracts.

Odds & Ends: Knicks, Wolves, Hummel, ‘Cats

October 18 2013 at 10:35pm CDT By Chuck Myron

Carmelo Anthony says he doesn’t expect Kobe Bryant to woo him to the Lakers, but Frank Isola of the New York Daily News is convinced the two have already spoken about teaming up, and interprets Anthony’s statement this week that he wants to test free agency as a warning shot designed to spur the Knicks into improving the team around him. We’ll have to wait until summer to find out what ‘Melo winds up doing, but there are plenty of moves to be made around the league between now and then. Here’s the latest: