And-Ones: Williams, Carmelo, Leonard, Isiah

Jazz forward Marvin Williams hasn’t had any discussions with management about his future, writes Aaron Falk of the Salt Lake Tribune. However, Falk reminds that Utah rejected a deadline deal that would have sent Williams out in an exchange for a first round pick, hoping that the 6’9 forward would eventually re-sign this summer. Williams is finishing up the final year of a deal that will pay him $7.5MM this season, and based on glowing approbation from his teammates and coaches recently, it’d appear that Utah remains strongly interested in keeping him for the long-term.

Here are more of tonight’s miscellaneous news and notes:

  • Carmelo Anthony finally had his first conversation with Phil Jackson before the Knicks‘ loss to the Lakers on Tuesday, though the 29-year-old forward tells Newsday’s Al Iannazzone that it was nothing more than small talk: “He told me to get ready, go out there and play, try to finish the season off strong, that’s it…We didn’t really talk about too much. Talked about him being in New York, him coming back out to L.A., the weather. Just generic. We really didn’t talk about nothing.”
  • There’s an argument to be made that Kawhi Leonard is the most valuable player on the league’s best team, writes Sam Amick of USA today, who also thinks it’s safe to assume that securing Leonard’s services will be a top priority for the Spurs this summer. The 6’7 forward will be eligible for a contract extension in July.
  • Isiah Thomas neither confirmed nor denied an interest in taking a job with the Pistons in the near future, but he did intimate his strong loyalty to the franchise: “My heart has never left this organization…I don’t think you will find a person on this earth that loves the Pistons more than I do” (Eric Lacy of reports).
  • Bill Laimbeer was also asked about a potential role with the Pistons but declined comment.
  • At the recommendation of a Los Angeles-based ankle specialist, Bucks forward Ersan Ilyasova will sit out the remainder of the 2013/14 season (Twitter links via the team’s official Twitter account).
  • Some may contend that Taj Gibson is a strong candidate to win the Sixth Man of the Year title, but Sam Smith of argues that the Bulls forward exemplifies the NBA’s Most Improved award.
  • Former 76ers swingman Rodney Carney is headed to Lebanon to play for Al Riyadi Beirut, reports Enea Trapani of Sportando.
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