Phil Pressey, whom the Celtics waived today, is already drawing interest from other teams, according to agent Aaron Mintz, as Adam Himmelsbach of the Boston Globe reports, though he’d have to clear waivers before he could sign. In any case, Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge had no shortage of praise for the point guard, as Himmelsbach relays.
“Phil may be my favorite player I’ve ever been around in the NBA, as a player, a coach or as an executive,” Ainge said. “It was a very difficult morning for me today. He’s a player I’d want on my team all the time. Unfortunately, we just have an abundance of small guards already. It’s unfortunate. He’s helped us a lot in the last two years, and he’s a classy and hardworking player.”
Here’s more from around the Atlantic Division:
- An announcement could come within the next two weeks that Nets owner Mikhail Prokhorov has bought Bruce Ratner’s 20% stake in the Nets, a move that would give Prokhorov 100% of the team, Bleacher Report’s Ric Bucher says (video link). The possibility still exists that Prokhorov will move in the other direction and sell off his majority interest, but the indications are strong that he’ll indeed buy the remaining shares of the team, Bucher says. Such a deal would also see Prokhorov’s interest in the Barclays Center rise from 45% to 100%, according to Bucher. Still, the move may well have more to do with debt that Ratner’s company owes Prokhorov and his partners than Prokhorov’s desire to own all of the team and the arena, since according to NetsDaily, Ratner faces a deadline to resolve that debt.
- The precise amount of money the Nets will have on their cap each of the next five years as a result of the buyout and stretch of Deron Williams‘ contract is $5,474,787, reports Eric Pincus of Basketball Insiders (All Twitter links). That means he gave up exactly $16MM in the buyout. His new contract with the Mavericks is worth $5.4MM this year and $5.6MM next season, according to Pincus, so assuming he remains on that contract through the end of 2015/16, and assuming he and the Nets didn’t waive set off rights, Brooklyn’s obligation for 2015/16 will be further reduced to about $3.197MM.
- Shooting guard Daniel Hackett, who worked out for the Knicks, has a verbal agreement to sign with Olympiacos of Greece, sources tell Sportando Emiliano Carchia. New York was willing to sign Hackett for training camp, Carchia adds, but it looks like he’ll stay overseas.
- Fenerbahce Ulker said the contract that former Celtics forward Gigi Datome signed with them covered two years, but it includes a player option for a third, according to Mark Murphy of the Boston Herald.