If it looks like Heat coach Erik Spoelstra is only now starting to formulate a plan for offseason pickup Michael Beasley, you’re not far off, writes Ira Winderman of the Sun Sentinel. ”With Michael,” Spoelstra said, “it was more about, initially, we felt he was part of our family. We drafted him. We spent a lot of time with him, not only during those two regular seasons, but during the offseasons and we just wanted to open up our arms back into our family,” the coach said. Here’s more from around the Association..
- Damien Wilkins, who was in training camp with the Hawks over the summer, has reached agreement on a deal with Beijing in China, tweets Shams Charania of RealGM.
- Victor Claver spoke with El Mundo after the rumors about his future published by Spanish media and Emiliano Carchia of Sportando provides the translation. “Portland is the team where I want to play. But at the same time I want to play more and here I don’t have chances to. The season is very long, let’s see if something will change. Right now I am not thinking about returning to Europe. I have no idea if there is a chance to be traded. But if it happened, I hope it is for the better,” said the Spanish forward.
- Nick Young has jokingly touted himself as a Sixth Man of the Year candidate at times this season, but coach Mike D’Antoni believes the swingman has a legitimate shot at the award, notes Mark Medina of the Los Angeles Daily News.
- D’Antoni is overseeing a locker room with ten players on expiring contracts, but he appears much more effective at building camaraderie with this Lakers team than with last year’s, as Ben Bolch of the Los Angeles Times observes.
- In this week’s mailbag, Mary Schmitt-Boyer of the Plain Dealer fields questions on the possibility of the Cavs trading for Luol Deng and more.
The majority of Hoops Rumors readers who voted today think at least one New York team will make the playoffs this season, in spite of a combined 7-24 record for the Knicks and Nets. That might not be the case if those clubs were in the much tougher Western Conference. The Hawks are in third place in the East with a 9-8 record, while the Lakers have the same mark and sit in 10th place in the West. The imbalance figures to soften to some degree as the season wears on, but it’s still troubling for Western teams competing for a postseason berth. Here’s more from the West:
- Wesley Johnson could have signed for more money and years to play with that Atlanta team and its much easier road to the playoffs, and the Bucks also offered a better deal than the Lakers, tweets Ramona Shelburne of ESPNLosAngeles.com. Coach Mike D’Antoni‘s system prompted Johnson to instead choose the L.A. and a one-year contract for the minimum salary.
- César Nanclares of TuBasket.com hears that Victor Claver is strongly considering a return to Europe amid disappointment over a reduced role this season with the Blazers (translation via HoopsHype). Nanclares points out the Spanish native’s contract runs through this season and next and that Portland isn’t likely to let him engineer a buyout this season, though the scribe wonders if the Blazers might be willing to cut ties this summer.
- Rockets forward Omri Casspi is leaving agent Steven Heumann of the Creative Artists Agency and will sign with Dan Fegan of Relativity Sports, as Fegan tells Sportando contributor David Pick.
- Former second-round draft pick Chukwudiebere Maduabum has signed with Tin Kalev Tallin of Estonia, Sportando’s Enea Trapani reports. The Nuggets hold the rights to Maduabum, the 56th overall pick in 2011.
The Blazers' first round draft choice C.J. McCollum has impressed at Las Vegas' Summer League tonight, going 6-for-10 from the field for 15 points in the first half. CSNNW.com's Chris Haynes spoke with the Blazers' ROY last season, Damian Lillard, about teaming with McCollum in the back-court next season.
Lillard was happy the Blazers selected him, since they've been friends for a long time (Twitter link). Haynes tweets further praise for McCollum and alludes to a possible ROY nod.
Alex Kennedy of HoopsWorld mimics Haynes' reports with his own tweet on the Lilliard-McCollum friendship, and 95.7 The Game's Ric Bucher applauds McCollum's steady hand during his first Summer League action in Vegas (Twitter link).
Here are a few more notes on the Blazers as well as the Thunder and Timberwolves:
- Joe Freeman of the Oregonian spoke with new Blazers center Robin Lopez who told him he’s a little atypical for the NBA.
- Freeman also has an update, via Twitter, on the leg injury suffered by rookie Victor Claver in his first Vegas Summer League game. It appears to be a quad contusion per Freeman's Tweet.
- Rookie Steven Adams was really impressed with the Thunder’s coaching staff last week, tweets the Oklahoman’s Darnell Mayberry
- CBSSports.com’s Royce Young on why the Thunder seem to have taken a step back by not making many moves this offseason.
- The Minnesota Star-Tribune’s Jerry Zgoda tweets that Corey Brewer’s Timberwolves’ recruitment was impressive. When majority owner Glen Taylor called, said Brewer, "I was like, 'Ok, they really do want me.'"
- Zgoda also writes that despite Brewer returning to the 'Wolves, they don't look anything like they did when Brewer sat on the bench after being drafted by them in 2007.
- Jim Souhan of the Star-Tribune opines that new GM Flip Saunders has set them up for success after all his moves this summer.
- Chase Budinger told Bruce Brothers of the Pioneer Press that the 'Wolves will be "very good."
As news comes in about D-League assignments and recalls today, we'll track it here, with the latest news at the top. Keep tabs on all of this year's D-League assignments and recalls by bookmarking our updated list.
- The Blazers have recalled Joel Freeland and Victor Claver from the Idaho Stampede, the Blazers announced via Twitter. They were sent down Friday, prompting Freeland's agent to express displeasure with the move. Blazers GM Neil Olshey responded by saying both Freeland and Claver indicated to him that they were enthusiastic about the opportunity for playing time, and both saw heavy minutes the last two nights for the Stampede. The Oregonian's Joe Freeman reported last night that the recalls were expected to take place (Twitter link).
- The Rockets have recalled rookie Terrence Jones from the D-League, the team announced. Jones was sent down to the Rio Grande Valley Vipers on Friday, but didn't appear in Saturday's game. He'll be active for Houston's game against Toronto today, according to the Rockets. The Rockets sent fellow rookie Donatas Motiejunas down on Friday along with Jones, but Motiejunas remains at Rio Grande Valley, as does Scott Machado, who's been there since his assignment on November 30th.
Thunder guard Kevin Martin is enjoying a "perfect opportunity" in Oklahoma City, after getting traded from Houston in the offseason, writes The Sacramento Bees' Jason Jones.
- On the recent news that the Grizzlies have hired ESPN.com's John Hollinger to join their front office, Nuggets head coach George Karl believes within a few years every team will have a statistician on board, writes the Denver Post's Adrian Dater.
- Responding to words from Joel Freeland's agent, in response to his supposed disappointment about being assigned to the Trail Blazers D-League affiliate Idaho Stampede, CSNNW.com's Chris Haynes spoke with Portland general manager Neil Olshey, who believes Freeland and Victor Claver were actually excited to get a playing opportunity.
Here are Friday's D-League assignments and recalls:
- The Thunder have assigned Jeremy Lamb and Daniel Orton to their D-League affiliate, the team announced today in a press release. Oklahoma City has been making frequent use of the Tulsa 66ers this year in order to get its young players some minutes. It's the third assignment for Lamb and Orton.
- The Rockets are sending Donatas Motiejunas and Terrence Jones back to their D-League affiliate, tweets Mark Berman of FOX 26 Houston. It's the second time each player has been sent to the Rio Grande Valley Vipers this season.
- Victor Claver and Joel Freeland have been assigned to the Idaho Stampede, the Trail Blazers announced today (Twitter link). Claver was sent down to the D-League for two games earlier this month, while Freeland has yet to join the Stampede this season.
The Portland Trail Blazers have recalled rookie forwards Victor Claver and Will Barton from the Idaho Stampede of the NBA D-League, the team announced this morning.
Claver and Barton were sent down on Friday, and played in two games for the Stampede. Barton averaged 19.5 PPG, 6.0 RPG, and 2.0 APG. Claver averaged 11.5 PPG, 6.5 RPG, and 1.0 APG.
Here are the rest of the D-League moves from Sunday:
We'll track today's D-League assignments and recalls here, with the latest moves up top. To keep tabs on all of this season's D-League assignments and recalls, check out our complete list.
- The Thunder have recalled Jeremy Lamb, Perry Jones III, and Daniel Orton from the Tulsa 66ers, the team announced today (Twitter link via Marc J. Spears of Yahoo! Sports). Having recalled DeAndre Liggins from the D-League last week, the Thunder now don't have any players still on the 66ers' roster, though I'd imagine that won't last too long.
- The Trail Blazers have assigned Will Barton and Victor Claver to the Idaho Stampede, the team announced today (link via Chris Haynes of CSNNW.com). Of the two rookies, Barton has earned more playing time, averaging 8.8 MPG in 16 contests, while Claver has seen limited minutes in just five games. Both players will be with the Stampede for two games before rejoining Portland, according to GM Neil Olshey (Twitter link via Jason Quick of the Oregonian).
- The Cavaliers have assigned Jon Leuer to their D-League affiliate, the team announced today in a press release. Leuer will join the Canton Charge and be available for the club's game tomorrow. After being claimed off waivers by Cleveland in the offseason, Leuer has appeared in five games for the Cavs, averaging 3.2 PPG and 2.0 RPG in 14.4 minutes per contest. The 23-year-old will be the only member of the Cavs playing in the D-League for now, since the team recalled Kevin Jones earlier this week.
Chris Forsberg of ESPN Boston heard from head coach Doc Rivers that the Celtics could decide to recall Kris Joseph and possibly Fab Melo up from the D-League while Jeff Green and Chris Wilcox are out of action. More notably, after Danny Ainge told WEEI radio that Rajon Rondo would be given a two game suspension (Twitter link), Rivers gave the impression that the team won't necessarily try to make any subsequent roster moves anytime soon. You can find more of tonight's miscellaneous links from the Association here:
- HoopsWorld's Alex Kennedy says (via Twitter) that the Raptors are weighing their free agent options at the small forward position.
- Trail Blazers GM Neil Olshey told Joe Freeman of The Oregonian of his plans to use D-League assignments accordingly for Victor Claver, Joel Freeland, Will Barton, and Nolan Smith. While Olshey thinks that his young players are currently benefitting through their NBA experience, he believes the best time to send them to the Idaho Stampede (their D-League affiliate) would be after they have built a good enough foundation with the coaching staff and need significant minutes to continue developing.
- According to Anthony Slater of NewsOK, Thunder GM Sam Presti was spotted at Oklahoma State University's basketball practice to supposedly begin scouting Marcus Smart and Le'Bryan Nash, two college prospects who are currently touted as potential first round picks.
- The Nets announced that the right foot sprain which Brook Lopez suffered during last night's game is unrelated to the foot injury he sustained last season, and added that he is only expected to miss the next two games (Howard Beck of the New York Times reports).
The latest news and notes from the Northwest Division on Tuesday night: