Brandon Roy

Northwest Notes: Jazz, Doncic, Markkanen, Murray, Roy

Is it within the realm of possibility that the Jazz could trade for Mavericks superstar Luka Doncic? Andy Larsen of the Salt Lake Tribune ponders that topic. Larsen confirms an earlier report the Jazz are keenly interested in Doncic. The Jazz would either have to deal All-Star Lauri Markkanen and a smaller assortment of picks and players, or give up a boatload of picks for Doncic, in Larsen’s estimation.

However, as Larsen acknowledges, Doncic would first have to request a trade and the Jazz’s draft assets from Cleveland and Minnesota aren’t all that attractive since both are playoff teams, though the Timberwolves could fall back to the lottery pack in the near future.

We have more from the Northwest Division:

  • Speaking of Markkanen, Sarah Todd of the Deseret News notes that he displayed star power in his first year with the Jazz. After his breakthrough campaign, Markkanen can still build on his game by improving his ball-handling, defense, footwork and aggressiveness, Todd writes.
  • Jamal Murray is officially listed as questionable to play in Game 1 of the Western Conference Finals on Tuesday due to a non-COVID illness. However, the Nuggets’ point guard intends to play, Harrison Wind of DNVR Sports tweets.
  • Former Trail Blazers star Brandon Roy will represent the team at the draft lottery on Tuesday. The Athletic’s Jason Quick writes that Roy, who retired at 28 due to knee issues, would like to return to the organization in an official capacity. “I do have confidence in myself in coaching, and I feel there is a lot I can offer,” Roy said. “But sometimes, I think about personnel, and what first, what works … and I think I’m good with chemistry and fit and understanding guys, so front office, scouting … or do something like Hersey Hawkins did when he was with the Blazers, mentoring and talking to guys. I’ve lived and experienced a lot of things, and I think I can help and give back to the younger players.’’

And-Ones: B. Roy, Blatt, BIG3, Amundson

Brandon Roy, a former sixth overall pick who earned three All-Star nods before injuries derailed his NBA career, is enjoying success in a new role. As Molly Blue of The Oregonian writes, Roy has remade himself as a high school basketball coach at Seattle’s Nathan Hale High School. After taking over a team that had gone 3-18 a year before, Roy led the school to a 29-0 run this season. Nathan Hale High School won Washington’s Class 3A state title, and the former Trail Blazers star was named the 2017 Naismith High School Coach of the Year. At age 32, Roy would probably prefer to still be playing in the NBA, but it’s good to see him continuing to thrive in the sport in a new way.

Here are a few more odds and ends from across the basketball world:

  • Former Cavaliers head coach David Blatt has been coaching in Turkey this season, and has no plans to return to the NBA for 2017/18, as Emiliano Carchia of Sportando details. In an interview with Match TV, Blatt said that he’s not going anywhere and intends to remain with Darussafaka Dogus next season.
  • The BIG3, Ice Cube‘s half-court, three-on-three league that will debut in June, has a broadcast television deal. The league announced today that it has partnered with FOX Sports and FS1. For more on the BIG3, be sure to check out our breakdown of the players and coaches participating in the league.
  • Veteran NBA center Lou Amundson, who appeared in 29 games for the Knicks last season, appears to be headed to the Philippines. Emiliano Carchia of Sportando writes that Amundson is close to signing a deal with TNT, after international basketball journalist David Pick reported (via Twitter) that the 34-year-old would land with a team in the Philippines.
  • Free agent point guard Greivis Vasquez and Lakers guard David Nwaba have new representation, according to Liz Mullen of SportsBusiness Journal, who reports (via Twitter) that Glushon Sports Management recently signed the duo.

Odds & Ends: Kobe, LeBron, Rivers, Roy, Mavs

We covered many of the pertinent points from Sam Amico's latest NBA report at FOX Sports Ohio earlier today in a post that rounded up today's Cavs rumors. But Amico's piece also features a few more notable tidbits, including word of the Blazers exploring moving up in the draft, the Bucks preparing to make a splash, and league executives beginning to believe Dwight Howard will sign with the Rockets. In addition to Amico's notes, we're hearing plenty of news and rumors from around the league, with the draft just three days away, so let's dive in….

  • Although Kobe Bryant has talked in the past about possibly retiring when his current contract ends in 2014, he recently said on Brazilian television that he could see himself playing for "another three or four years." Eric Pincus of the Los Angeles Times has the details and a link to the video clip.
  • A year from now, we could be looking forward to a sequel to The Decision, as LeBron James decides whether to exercise the 2014 opt-out in his contract with the Heat. For now though, LeBron tells CNN's Rachel Nichols that he hasn't thought about potential free agency, and will address it when the time comes (link via Ira Winderman of the South Florida Sun Sentinel).
  • A source tells TNT's David Aldridge that Doc Rivers will have more say in the Clippers' basketball decisions than he did for the Celtics.
  • While he stopped short of officially declaring his NBA career over, Brandon Roy acknowledged to's Kevin Pelton that it's no secret his basketball days are "numbered" (Twitter links).
  • With Chris Paul seemingly on track to re-sign with the Clippers, Tim MacMahon of writes that the Mavericks will have to move on to their Plan B at point guard, and identifies a few possible targets.

Timberwolves Release Brandon Roy

3:00pm: The Timberwolves have officially released Roy, according to the team (Twitter link).

2:15pm: The Timberwolves are finalizing the release of Brandon Roy, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports. While the move isn't official yet, an announcement from the team is expected soon, according to Wojnarowski.

Roy signed a two-year deal with the T-Wolves last summer, but the second year of that deal became nonguaranteed when his knee problems resurfaced, meaning Minnesota won't be on the hook for the 28-year-old's $5.33MM salary for next season.

Roy's return to the NBA following his 2011 retirement was a disappointing one, as injuries limited him to just five games for the Wolves, in which he scored a total of 29 points. It's not clear yet if Roy will officially announce his retirement for the second time or whether he'll attempt to continue his playing career, but it's hard to imagine him playing in the NBA again.

Even if Roy does retire, he'll continue to receive pay checks from the Trail Blazers for a little longer yet. Because he was amnestied by Portland, Roy will receive the full amount of his five-year, $82MM contract, which runs through the 2014/15 season.

Zgoda on Kahn, Pekovic, Kirilenko, Saunders

Jerry Zgoda of the Star Tribune believes that several topics of discussion surrounding the Timberwolves are tied to whether or not Rick Adelman decides to return as head coach next season, namely Andrei Kirilenko's $10MM player option as well as the impending free agencies of Nikola Pekovic and Chase Budinger. Another question mark is tied to future of GM David Kahn, as majority team owner Glen Taylor maintains that he is undecided on Kahn's future and has no timetable on a decision. Zgoda has more things to discuss about the team, and you can find the highlights below: 

  • Kahn seems confident that he'll return for the draft and next season: "Glen and I talk all the time…My sense is that we’ll be working on this for a while.”
  • The team hasn't made it a secret that they'd like to keep Pekovic for the long-term, but it remains to be seen if that stance will change should the 6'11 center garner a max contract offer from another team. 
  • Although a $10MM salary in 2013-14 appears lucrative, Kirilenko – at age 32 – may find it wiser to opt out and seek a three-or-four year contract, which would likely be the last of his NBA career. 
  • Taylor speaks regularly with Flip Saunders, mostly because the former Timberwolves head coach has been involved with an investment group looking to buy the team. With that being said, their relationship has fueled speculation that Saunders could be among the next in line to be considered for the general manager position if Kahn isn't retained. 
  • Brandon Roy most likely doesn't have a future in Minnesota, but his salary could still be used to make a trade work around draft time. 
  • Taylor, who looked to sell the team before the start of this season (preferably to a buyer with Minnesota ties that would keep the team where it is), looks to continue owning the team for the foreseeable future. 
  • There has been some tension brewing after some comments that Kevin Love made about being unhappy with his contract situation earlier this year, causing some to speculate the 6'10 forward's desire to remain in Minnesota. With that being said, Love denies wanting out, and teammate Derrick Williams is among those who believe him: "I can vouch for my teammates, the people we’re around every single day, and I think he wants to be here…And we want him here. He’s one of the best players in the game. Who wouldn’t want one of the best power forwards in the game and in the world to be on their team?”

Wolves Owner On Adelman, Kahn, Saunders, Sale

Timberwolves owner Glen Taylor identifies the uncertainty surrouding the future of coach Rick Adelman as his top offseason concern, but his comments to Ray Richardson of St. Paul Pioneer Press seemed to dispel this week's report that Adelman is likely to retire. Taylor plans on Adelman coming back, and doesn't have a contingency in place if Adelman steps down. The owner said he isn't sure if assistant Terry Porter, who filled for Adelman during his absence, would be the choice. "If Rick were to leave, I would want to think about all options we have available to us. My thought process right now would be to not look at just one person," Taylor said.

Richardson's Q&A with Taylor is worth a read in its entirety, but we'll hit the highlights here:

On the future of GM David Kahn:

I haven't come to the time to make a decision on that. Let's finish the season first. I want to find out about my coach first. I don't have a time frame to address David's situation. He and I have been talking about the draft and other things as we go into the offseason. At some point, I know I need to make a decision.

On his relationship with Flip Saunders:

First of all, Flip was just trying to help a friend who had an outside group, but that group never submitted a bid. I have a coach and I have a GM. Me and Flip have not talked about those things. What we talk about mostly is his work at ESPN and what's going on in the league. I have maintained a friendship with Flip. We kept in touch when he was at Washington and Detroit.

On a potential sale of the team:

I haven't come up with anybody who meets all the needs. One of my problems is that I haven't found anybody who lives in Minnesota or has a Minnesota background. The interest has come from people outside the state. I'm interested in a local person buying the team on a limited partner basis. Right now, I don't have a strong feeling that I want to get rid of the team. I still enjoy it. I was thinking of a long run to try to find a successor, but I might keep things the way they are.

On Nikola Pekovic's restricted free agency this summer:

I want him to stay, and he has told me he wants to stay. It's to our advantage to try and work something out with him. We know and he knows he's able to test the market. When he tells me he wants to stay, I take him for his word, but agents play a big role in all of this.

On the notion that the team's signing of Brandon Roy was a mistake:

It's fair criticism … for me and David. We did take a risk, and it was proven to be a wrong risk. There were other players out there with some experience who we could have gotten, who would have helped us at a position (shooting guard) where we needed help. We're out of the money this year ($5.1MM), but based on the contract we have, we don't have to pay him next year if he doesn't play.

Brandon Roy Intends To Continue Playing Career

Two months ago, Brandon Roy told Chris Haynes of that he would have to seriously consider retirement if he couldn't get healthy and return to the court by season's end. Roy hasn't appeared in a game since making those comments, but according to Ric Bucher of 95.7 The Game (Sulia link), the veteran guard is holding out hope that he can play in at least one of the Timberwolves' last five games.

The fact that Roy believes he's healthy enough to return to action this season also means he's looking to continue his playing career. However, according to Bucher, Roy's contract is written in such a way that he's not sure whether he'll still be under Wolves' control — his agents at Wasserman Media Group and the players' union will examine the language of the deal more closely to determine whether he can become a free agent this summer, says Bucher.

Based on the contract details we heard from Mark Deeks of ShamSports last offseason, I would assume Roy's deal has in fact become non-guaranteed. Although the second year of the contract was initially guaranteed, it was agreed that it would become non-guaranteed if his previous knee problems resurfaced. Once that happened, the second year could only become guaranteed again if Roy played more than 1,400 minutes in 2012/13 or if he was on the active list for 65+ games — he failed to meet either benchmark.

Perhaps some specific wording in the contract raises questions, or perhaps there's some debate over whether Roy's knee issues this season were directly related to his previous injuries. Either way, I imagine the Wolves will do their best to ensure they're not on the hook for the $5.33MM owed to Roy next season, considering they reportedly explored buying him out or trading his contract earlier this year.

Roy, 28, has only appeared in five games for the Wolves since returning to the game following his 2011 retirement with the Trail Blazers.

Northwest Rumors: Roy, Gelabale, Johnson

The Trail Blazers and Timberwolves seem to share a link greater than just their placement together in the Northwest Division. They were at opposite ends of a tug-of-war over restricted free agent Nicolas Batum last summer, around the same time former Blazers star Brandon Roy came out of retirement to sign with the Wolves, a move that cost Portland owner Paul Allen $17MM in insurance money. Earlier this season they "amicably" resolved a dispute over a trade the two clubs made back in 2010. Both clubs are in the news again, with news involving Roy and former Blazer and current Wolf Chris Johnson. Here's what we know:

  • Wolves coach Rick Adelman hasn't been expecting Roy to return this season, but after spending the last two weeks hard at work in practice, Roy will ask Adelman if he can return to game action, reports Charley Walters of the St. Paul Pioneer Press. Roy, who says his oft-injured right knee is improving, will almost certainly hit free agency this summer, since he's played only five games this season and his deal is non-guaranteed for 2013/14. He suggested earlier this year that he'd retire if he couldn't come back healthy by the end of this season.
  • Johnson and Mickael Gelabale also have non-guaranteed deals with the Wolves for next year, and they appear to have a shot at returning to the club, notes Kent Youngblood of the Star Tribune. "This summer will be big for them," Adelman said. "We like them both."
  • The Blazers will send their first-round pick to the Bobcats if it's not in the top 12, and as our updated tentative draft order shows, Portland is in line for the No. 12 pick, separated by three games from the Mavericks for the No. 13 spot. Despite the motivation to lose and improve the team's chances of keeping its pick, Blazers coach Terry Stotts insists that's something his squad won't do, as The Oregonian's Mike Tokito observes. "We've played every game to try and win," Stotts said. "The draft picks — I just think you start doing that you're (messing with) basketball karma or whatever. I think you gotta be true to the game and true to your players, and that's never been a concern of mine or our team."

Injured Players On Expiring Contracts

The Lakers announced yesterday that Metta World Peace underwent successful surgery on his left knee to repair a torn meniscus, and will miss six weeks. Whether or not the Lakers make the playoffs, World Peace's season could be over, and Mark Medina of the Los Angeles Daily News wondered yesterday if the veteran forward has played his last game as a Laker.

World Peace isn't necessarily in the final year of his contract, since he has a player option for next season. However, if he exercises that option, he becomes a prime candidate to be amnestied. If he declines the option, he'll hit unrestricted free agency. Either way, the man formerly known as Ron Artest may sign a new contract before he plays in his next NBA game.

A number of players are in the same situation as World Peace, with potential free agency looming and an injury keeping them off the court. Here are a few guys who we may not see play for their current teams again, and whose free agent stocks could be affected by their current injuries:

  • Leandro Barbosa (Wizards): If you'd forgotten Barbosa was on the Wizards' roster, you're probably not alone. Acquired for salary purposes in the deal that sent Jordan Crawford to Boston, Barbosa is on an expiring minimum-salary contract, and his ACL/MCL injury may hurt his chances of signing another deal this offseason. Having suffered the season-ending injury in February, he probably won't be healthy in time for fall camps.
  • Rodrigue Beaubois (Mavericks): Eligible for restricted free agency this summer, Beaubois underwent surgery on his hand last week, and is unlikely to return this season. I doubt the Mavs will make him a qualifying offer, and there's a good chance he doesn't return to Dallas.
  • Andrew Bynum (76ers): As well-documented as any non-Derrick Rose injury this season, Bynum's ongoing knee troubles will certainly hurt his earning potential in free agency this summer, and may also ensure he never plays a game with the Sixers.
  • Richard Hamilton (Bulls): While Hamilton remains optimistic that he'll play again this season, his ongoing health problems will likely lead the Bulls to part ways with him this summer. Hamilton's $5MM salary for 2013/14 is partially guaranteed, so he figures to receive a $1MM buyout and hit the free agent market.
  • Sasha Pavlovic (Trail Blazers): Pavlovic's quad injury has kept him out of action for more than a month, but even if he were healthy, he doesn't appear to be part of the Trail Blazers' plans. Although he's under contract for two more seasons, both years are non-guaranteed, so he may find himself seeking a new deal this July.
  • A.J. Price (Wizards): Price earned 22 starts this season for the Wizards, so perhaps the team will have interest in bringing him back next year. He's eager to return to the court to try to improve his free agent stock, but for now, groin issues are keeping him out indefinitely.
  • Brandon Roy (Timberwolves): All the time Roy has missed this season with knee problems ensured that the second year of his contract with the Timberwolves became non-guaranteed, and there's virtually no chance the Wolves will retain him and his $5.33MM salary. If Roy is forced to call it a career at season's end, it would be an unfortunate way for him to go out, but I wouldn't be surprised if that's where we're headed.
  • Brandon Rush (Warriors): After going down during the season's first week, Rush underwent knee surgery in January that ended his year. Fortunately for him, he's got a $4MM player option for 2013/14, so he figures to be returning to the Warriors rather than looking for work next year.
  • Jason Smith (Hornets): Out for the season with a torn labrum, Smith, like Hamilton, has a partially guaranteed contract for 2013/14. The price to keep him wouldn't be exorbitant – $1MM of his $2.5MM salary is guaranteed – so we'll have to wait and see what the Hornets decide.
  • Kurt Thomas and Rasheed Wallace (Knicks): A pair of aging Knicks bigs on expiring contracts, it would be a little surprising to see both Thomas and Wallace playing in the NBA next year, even if they return in the playoffs. Even if Thomas and Wallace wanted to extend their playing careers, their latest foot issues would raise red flags for any interested teams.
  • Elliot Williams (Trail Blazers): Unlike some other players on this list, Williams is no lock to receive an NBA contract, especially if he can't show that he's healthy before the fall. That's probably why, even after surgery on his achilles, he talked about wanting to return to the court in '12/13 and auditioning in the Summer League.

Brandon Roy Talks Future, Rehab, Lillard

Minnesota Timberwolves guard Brandon Roy, who has missed most of the season after undergoing knee surgery, addressed media in Portland before the Wolves faced off against the Trail Blazers. Roy reflected on his five seasons in Portland as well as updating on the status of his rehab and the future of his career. Ben Golliver of BlazersEdge has a full transcript of Roy's comments.

On the status of his rehabilitation from knee surgery:

I'm doing good. I've been doing good for a few weeks now. Working without any setbacks. I'm getting closer to getting back out there on the court. I was talking to Kevin [Love] and Chase [Budinger] and those guys, once they're healthy, I'll be that much closer and we'll give ourselves a good look at what we could have been had we been healthy. Maybe it's just timing also.

On how many more years he plans to play:

I'm not sure. My body has a lot to say about that. At the end of the year, I'll do some reflecting on how this season went and if I want to continue. I made the commitment at the beginning of the year that I'm going to stick with this season no matter what through the ups and downs and at the end of the year I'll reflect on things and do I still want to go forward. I'm not going to make that decision now, I know maybe people want me to. I made a commitment and I'm going to stick it out.

Thoughts on Blazers rookie guard Damian Lillard:

He's a good player. Being in Minnesota I don't get to watch as many Portland games, but the games I've watched, he's a really tough player. I didn't know he could shoot the ball that good. He's a really good three-pointer shooter. He's just tough on the court and he makes big shots, timely shots. He's going to be a special player in this league.

He's solid. I've never really been one to compare guys to myself but I see a lot of Chauncey Billups in him. Chauncey wasn't at that level so early but you could see a lot of similarities. He just comes down and makes timely baskets. Playing against guys like Chauncey, that's what they did. He's going to be a really good player in this league.

Reflections on the would-be dynasty in Portland with LaMarcus Aldridge and Greg Oden:

I never really do it. But people will sit around and watch games and go, 'man, if you guys could have stayed healthy,' and they will mention Greg, me and LaMarcus, we had a lot of young talented pieces. Some people say you guys could have been this, you could have been that. I'm the type where unless you work and actually get that, it's just a what if. If you think too hard on the what ifs, it takes too much credit from the teams that are actually going out and doing it.