Ojars Silins

And-Ones: Love, Wolves, Ayon

Trading Kevin Love may have been an inevitability, but Wolves General Manager Milt Newton is glad that the team didn’t jump at the first offer they got, writes Jon Krawczynski of The Associated Press.  “We told all the teams from Day 1, we’re happy to coach him for this last year,” Newton said. “They realized we weren’t going to give him away. What that did was made teams put their best foot forward to start with and see if it could get better from there.” More from around the NBA..

  • Gustavo Ayon previously hinted that he had his eye on an NBA deal, but it doesn’t sound like that’s in the cards, at least so far. The big man told Basket4US (translation courtesy of HoopsHype) that he only has an offer from China at the moment.  Late last week he told another Spanish outlet, Récord, that he had no NBA offers.
  • There are still a few notable players left on the free agent market, and Eric Pincus of Basketball Insiders runs down the remaining salary cap room for each franchise.
  • Ojars Silins had his contract with Grissin Bon Reggio Emilia of the Euroleague extended until June 2015, reports Emiliano Carchia of Sportando. Silins went undrafted this year despite being projected as a possible second round pick. This extension will still allow Silins to try and catch on with an NBA team next summer.

Eddie Scarito contributed to this post.

Southwest Notes: Nowitzki, ‘Melo, Pelicans

Zach Randolph is No. 10 in the latest Hoops Rumors Free Agent Power Rankings, but it seems like he’ll be off-limits to other suitors come July, as agent Raymond Brothers and the Grizzlies appear to be making significant progress toward a deal. That might have the effect of driving up the value of other free agents amid a class that’s highlighted by players with option clauses and restricted free agents. Here’s the latest on the Grizzlies and their Southwest Division rivals:

  • Dirk Nowitzki has encouraged the Mavs to consider signing Carmelo Anthony, but he nonetheless believes that ‘Melo ending up in Dallas is not a realistic outcome, as Bryan Gutierrez of ESPNDallas.com observes. Still, a recent report indicated that the Mavs are among the three top teams on Anthony’s list of preferred destinations.
  • Executives around the league believe it’ll be an active offseason for the Pelicans, tweets Alex Kennedy of Basketball Insiders. That’s in spite of more than $54MM in salary commitments for next season and comments from GM Dell Demps, who said in April that he wants to see more of the team’s existing core together.
  • Aaron Craft, Markel Brown, Viktor Gaddefors, Jordan Morgan and Ojars Silins are among the draft prospects who’ll work out for the Grizzlies on Sunday, the team announced.

Draft Notes: Lakers, Gordon, Smart, Ennis

The Lakers will audition Zach LaVine for a second time on Saturday, tweets Dave McMenamin of ESPNLosAngeles.com, and they’d like to be able to do the same with Doug McDermott, according to Chad Ford of ESPN.com, who writes in an Insider-only piece. The Lakers are also the only team for which Aaron Gordon has worked out twice, as he told reporters, including Eric Pincus of the Los Angeles Times (Twitter link). Here’s more from around the draft scene:

  • The Sixers would like to meet with Gordon, too, and they have an audition scheduled Saturday for Marcus Smart, Bleacher Report’s Kevin Ding tweets.
  • Tyler Ennis, Cleanthony Early, Roscoe Smith, Eric Moreland, Ojars Silins and Viktor Gaddefors are performing for the Suns today, according to Paul Coro of the Arizona Republic (Twitter links). It’s Smith’s second workout for the team, Coro notes.
  • It appears as though Jarnell Stokes hasn’t had a chance to make up workouts he had to cancel with the Sixers, Celtics and Hawks when he suffered injuries in a car accident, as Andy Katz of ESPN.com details. He has auditioned for the Rockets and Spurs, among previously reported teams, since his recovery, according to Katz.
  • Tarik Black, Sean Kilpatrick, Nick Russell and Philipp Neumann are among those showing off for the Bucks today, the team announced (Twitter link).
  • The Lakers added South Carolina power forward Matthew Hezekiah to today’s workout group, Pincus notes (on Twitter).

Draft Notes: Embiid, Silins, Pelicans

Brad Stevens tells Chris Forsberg of ESPNBoston.com that the Celtics haven’t yet established a draft board. “I have not sat down with our front office all in one room and talked about a draft board,” Stevens said. “We’ll sit down now, after probably next week’s workouts, and talk more as we continue to get closer to the draft. But clearly with two picks in the top 20, we’ve got a lot of evaluating to do.” Here a rundown of today’s draft notes:

  • T.J. Warren, Scottie Wilbekin, Roscoe Smith, Davion Berry, and Isaiah Armwood will work out for the Nuggets, reports Christopher Dempsey of The Denver Post (Twitter links).
  • A league source confirmed to John Reid of The Times-Picayune that the Pelicans are in discussions with several teams looking to trade their first round pick (Twitter link). The Pelicans are reportedly taking an aggressive approach to trading into the first round.
  • Magic executives are high enough on Marcus Smart‘s intangibles to consider selecting him with the fourth pick in the draft, reports Josh Robbins of The Orlando Sentinel. Robbins adds that had Smart declared for last year’s draft, Orlando might have selected him at No. 2.
  • Bob Finnan of The News-Herald urges his readers to monitor whether Joel Embiid schedules work outs for the Bucks or Sixers between now and the draft. If Embiid shuts out those teams, Finnan believes it would indicate a promise from the Cavs to take him at No. 1. Such a development would be significant, considering Embiid is already scheduled to work out for Milwaukee.
  • Adi Joseph of USA Today takes a look at the draft needs for the Hornets and Mavs.

Earlier updates:

  • While the Cavs had some concerns when evaluating Joel Embiid‘s back, Terry Pluto of The Plain Dealer says there were no “red flags,” and that Cleveland was blown away by his workout. The belief that Embiid’s physical went well is mounting, after a report to the contrary initially surfaced.
  • Ojars Silins has decided to keep his name in the NBA draft pool, reports Jānis Freimanis of Sportacentrs.com (translation via Emiliano Carchia of Sportando). Silins will take the Grizzlies up on their workout invitation, and will also work out for the Spurs and Pistons over the next couple weeks.
  • The Pelicans are aggressively trying to trade into the first round in hopes of selecting a young small forward or center, tweets Marc J. Spears of Yahoo! Sports.
  • Sean Deveney of The Sporting News is hearing rumors that a team has promised to take Elfrid Payton in the teens of the first round (H/T Basketball Insiders).
  • T.J. Warren‘s stock is rising into the mid-first-round, sources tell Alex Kennedy of Basketball Insiders (Twitter link).
  • Kennedy tweets that league executives are “fascinated” by Walter Tavares. The 7’3″ center is projected as an early second round pick by both Jonathan Givony of DraftExpress and ESPN Insider Chad Ford.
  • Eliot Shorr-Parks of NJ.com speculates that the conflicting reports out of Cleveland regarding Embiid’s health could be a smoke screen aimed at convincing the Sixers they need to trade up to the No. 1 spot in order to get Andrew Wiggins.

Western Notes: Clippers, Jones, Adams

The Clippers won’t allow the ownership and legal situation involving Donald Sterling impact their offseason moves, writes Tim Reynolds of The Associated Press. Reynolds points out the situation is different from the one in New Orleans a few years ago when the league ran the team. Of the situation, commissioner Adam Silver said, “It’s not a level of concern for us. Doc Rivers is the head of basketball operations of the Clippers. We’ve installed Dick Parsons as the interim CEO. He’s on the same page as Doc. They’re working together. Dick Parsons has the absolute authority from the league office to operate the Clippers in the best interest of the organization.

More from out west:

  • Darnell Mayberry of the Oklahoman grades Perry Jones III’s second season with the Thunder. In 62 games, Jones averaged 3.5 PPG, 1.8 RPG, and 0.4 APG in 12.3 minutes a night.
  • The Grizzlies have invited Ojars Silins to work out for them on June 22nd, reports Emiliano Carchia of Sportando. The Latvian forward is still undecided if he will keep his name in the draft, or withdraw prior to the June 16th deadline, reports Carchia.
  • Celtics lead assistant coach Ron Adams will interview with the Warriors next week about a position on Steve Kerr‘s staff, reports Baxter Holmes of The Boston Globe.