Eastern Notes: Nene, Cavs, Heat, Pistons

Terry Pluto of The Plain Dealer looks at Cavs interim GM David Griffin‘s track record from when he worked with Steve Kerr in the Suns front office, noting his success and his preference for building exciting, high-scoring teams. Pluto would expect Griffin to target offensive firepower if he became a permanent GM by reuniting with Kerr on the Knicks, or by losing the interim tag in Cleveland. Such an offensive bent runs counter to coach Mike Brown‘s determination to win through defense. Here’s more from the Central Division:

  • Steve Kyler of Basketball Insiders thinks that both Brown and Griffin are likely to be brought back since they haven’t been fired yet, but notes that a decision hasn’t been made (Twitter link).
  • There was some ambiguity as to whether Phil Jackson will want to retain Herb Williams when he hires the next Knicks coach, but Kyler expects Williams will be gone (Twitter link).
  • Vince Ellis of Detroit Free Press expects the Pistons GM search to be a lengthy process. Detroit’s front office considers the draft and free agency “artificial” deadlines, and will be thorough and patient while evaluating candidates, many of whose schedules are loaded from working for teams still in the playoffs.
  • Nene is in danger of facing a one-game suspension for his altercation with Jimmy Butler in last night’s Wizards loss to the Bulls, per Mike Wise of The Washington Post.
  • Stu Jackson of NBATV used to make disciplinary decisions for the league, and he says that the thrown punch from Nene merits a suspension according to the rules (Twitter links).
  • Ira Winderman of Sun Sentinel looks at the likelihood that the Heat will pay a steep repeater tax bill in the coming years if they manage to keep LeBron James, Chris Bosh, and Dwyane Wade.
  • Winderman lays out a variety of scenarios in which Heat players could help the roster stay intact and under the salary cap, by opting out of their deals to accept longer contracts with lower annual salaries.
  • We looked at Wade’s tricky contract situation in our latest Free Agent Stock Watch feature.
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