Eastern Notes: Irving, Parker, Van Gundy, Celtics

Lost amidst all the publicity surrounding the Cavs with LeBron James making his return to Cleveland was just how important it was for the team to sign Kyrie Irving to a contract extension, Terry Pluto of The Northeast Ohio Media Group writes. The Cavs needed Irving to be “all in” so that they could attract James and other free agents, which is why the team pushed to get Irving to re-sign for the maximum five years, Pluto adds.

Here’s the latest from the East:

  • If Jabari Parker continues to develop his game, the Bucks will have landed a player whose talent is on par with Paul Pierce and Carmelo Anthony, two players whom Parker’s game has been compared to, Michael Scotto of Sheridan Hoops writes. “I think Parker will end up closer to Pierce later in his career,” an Eastern Conference scout told Scotto. “I think the comparisons fit better when Anthony is playing a small four instead of the three. I think Jabari is going to have success in the league more as a small four than a three.”
  • Re-signing with the Celtics is Rajon Rondo‘s free agent preference this summer, but if that scenario falls apart, then Los Angeles would move to the top of the point guard’s list, A. Sherrod Blakely of CSNNE.com says in a video report.
  • Pistons president and head coach Stan Van Gundy wasn’t very flattering of himself when assessing the job that he has done in Detroit thus far, Brian Schmitz of The Orlando Sentinel writes. “If I were only the president, I’d fire the coach,” Van Gundy said. “Clearly I’m not doing a great job. I need to coach guys. I need to make sure we’re getting to things quicker. I need to take responsibility for things going on.” Detroit is off to a 3-16 start this season, which ranks the Pistons 14th in the Eastern Conference.
  • James Young and Dwight Powell of the Celtics have been re-assigned to the Maine Red Claws, the team announced. This is the fourth D-League assignment of the season for both players. The Red Claws are scheduled to take on the Sioux Falls Skyforce this evening.
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