Bulls forward Lauri Markkanen is eager to get a rookie scale extension done before the December 21 deadline, K.C. Johnson of NBC Sports Chicago tweets. Markkanen said on Tuesday he’s pushing his agent, Michael (Boris) Lelchitski, to reach an agreement. “I really want to be here long-term so I’m putting some pressure on (my agent) to get (an extension) done,” he said. De’Aaron Fox, Jayson Tatum, Donovan Mitchell and Bam Adebayo are the other members of Markkanen’s draft class who have already reached extension agreements.
We have more from the Central Division:
- Pacers guard Victor Oladipo has been the subject of trade rumors but he insists he didn’t ask to be dealt, according to Eric Woodyard of ESPN (Twitter link). “I never came out and said that I didn’t want to play for the Pacers or be in this organization,” he said. Oladipo, who said he think he’s much healthier than he was last season, added that he feels pressure to prove that he’s still an All-Star caliber player. “It feels like the world (is) on my back and I’ve got to make sure I hold it up,” he said.
- Giannis Antetokounmpo is expected to meet with the Bucks this week, according to Brian Windhorst of ESPN (video link). The two-time MVP’s decision whether to sign a super-max extension or test the free agent market next offseason looms as the biggest story of the preseason.
- The Cavaliers have hired Greg Buckner as an assistant coach, Chris Fedor of the Cleveland Plain Dealer reports. Buckner has a history with head coach J.B. Bickerstaff, as they worked together on the Rockets and Grizzlies coaching staffs.
- New coach Billy Donovan’s plans for Markkanen, Zach LaVine and Wendell Carter Jr. are among the questions looming over the Bulls as they open training camp, Darnell Mayberry of The Athletic writes.