Eastern Notes: Gabriel, Rondo, Thomas

The Cavaliers have expressed interest in forward Kenny Gabriel, who has received an invitation to attend training camp with the team, Antonis Stroggylakis of Eurohoops.net relays. If Gabriel decides to remain overseas, he’s likely to sign with the Russian club, Lokomotiv Kuban, Stroggylakis notes. He appeared in 51 games last season for Pinar Kasiyaka, also in Russia, notching averages of 11.4 points and 5.7 rebounds on 47.1% shooting. The 27-year old was a member of Cleveland’s squad in the Las Vegas Summer League this year, where he averaged 7.4 points and 3.7 rebounds per game.

Here’s more from out of the Eastern Conference:

  • The Bulls‘ addition of point guard Rajon Rondo could pay dividends for the team, Sam Smith of NBA.com writes, noting that Rondo’s reputation as being a disruptive force is a bit overblown. Rondo believes he and fellow new arrival, Dwyane Wade, will mesh well together, Smith adds. “I think I’m coming off one of my best seasons,” said Rondo. “I didn’t miss any games as far as injuries. I feel great. Dwyane’s been doing the same. We’re a little bit older in age, but I think that’s wiser. I’ve talked to Wade. I think we’ll be a very talented team, a very versatile team, especially at the guard position. To play with a guy like that, that I’ve battled against personally, it’s always great to have a guy like that on your side.”
  • The free agent spending boom sparked by the league’s new TV deal this summer has many role-players earning higher salaries than the Celtics‘ All-Star point guard Isaiah Thomas, who will be paid $6,587,132 for his work in 2017/18. Thomas isn’t bitter about his situation, but the player does worry if these larger deals will affect locker rooms around the NBA, Chris Forsberg of ESPN.com writes. “Hopefully it doesn’t mess up any locker rooms, hopefully it doesn’t mess up ours, but it can,” said Thomas. “Definitely if you get paid that much, you feel like you should have a bigger role than whatever that role is. But hopefully for the betterment of the team and the guys we have around the locker room, I don’t think it’s going to happen.
  • Despite feeling the pressure to add a superstar to the Celtics‘ roster, team executive Danny Ainge should hold onto the teams ample assets and not deviate from the plan merely to add a short-term piece, Michael Pina of RealGM opines in his look at the team.

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