David Nurse

Eastern Notes: Hill, Lue, D-League

Because the Pacers declined to exercise their team option on Solomon Hill for 2016/17, the small forward is now set to become an unrestricted free agent and Indiana cannot offer Hill a salary for next season greater than $2,306,019, which is the value of the option the Pacers declined. Team executive Larry Bird, speaking at today’s press conference, noted that he told Hill in his exit interview that that the team would consider re-signing him, Candace Buckner of The Indianapolis Star relays in a series of tweets. Bird also told the 25-year-old that he did him a favor by declining the option because it lit a fire under him this season, Buckner adds. Hill made 59 appearances for the Pacers this season, notching averages of 4.2 points, 2.8 rebounds and 1.0 assist in 14.7 minutes per contest. His shooting line on the season was .447/.324/.857.

Here’s more from out of the Eastern Conference:

  • Cavaliers coach Tyronn Lue has consistently held LeBron James accountable for his mistakes, something former coach David Blatt was unable or unwilling to do, and it has strengthened the relationship between James and Lue as a result, Brian Windhorst of ESPN.com writes.
  • Bucks GM John Hammond told members of the media that Milwaukee hopes to establish its own D-League affiliate in time for the 2017/18 season, as Chris Reichert of Upside & Motor relays (via Twitter).
  • The Nets made significant strides in their 3-point shooting as a team after David Nurse joined the team as a shooting coach in January, Ian Begley of ESPN.com notes (ESPN Now link). Prior to Nurse’s arrival, Brooklyn shot just 32.6% from beyond the arc, which was good for 28th in the league, Begley writes. But the Nets actually led the league from deep after Nurse came aboard, sinking a stellar 40.7% of their 3-point shots.

Atlantic Notes: Bradley, Wright, Nurse

Celtics shooting guard Avery Bradley says switching agents from Mitchell Butler of the Vanguard Sports Group and Dan Fegan of Relativity Sports to Rob Pelinka of Landmark Sports was a “private matter,” adding that it wasn’t about trying to improve his brand or add endorsements, Gary Washburn of The Boston Globe writes. “At the time I just felt like it was best for me,” Bradley told Washburn. “I play because God blessed me to play this game and that’s what I enjoy doing. Hopefully I can continue to keep playing at this high level and hopefully I can continue to be a better basketball player.”

The 25-year-old also told Washburn that he’s trying to lead the team’s younger players by setting the right example and hopes that they are taking notice. “It’s a blessing to be here and part of an organization like this. I just try to come in every single day and be professional and work as hard as I can,” Bradley said. “I feel like you can’t replace that. I try to let everyone know we’re all a team together from the strength and conditioning [coach] to trainer, I try to respect everybody. When I do little things like that it helps them see the importance of a team. Not just the players, but everybody.

Here’s more regarding the Atlantic Division:

  • The two players on the Nets who can benefit the most by the addition of shooting coach David Nurse are Rondae Hollis-Jefferson and Markel Brown, opines Reed Wallach of NetsDaily. Other players whose outside shooting Brooklyn hopes the addition of Nurse will improve in the future are Chris McCullough, Sergey Karasev and draft-and-stash prospect Juan Pablo Vaulet, Wallach adds.
  • The Raptors have recalled combo guard Delon Wright from their D-League affiliate, the team announced. In 12 games for the Raptors 905 this season Wright is averaging 18.0 points, 4.6 rebounds and 6.8 assists while connecting on 52.7% of his field goal attempts.

Atlantic Notes: Wroten, 2016 Draft, Johnson

The Knicks don’t want to sign a player to a 10-day deal who won’t crack their rotation, which explains why the team hasn’t added Tony Wroten or Jimmer Fredette despite possessing an open roster spot, Marc Berman of The New York Post writes. New York thinks it would be wasteful to do so, according to Berman, and the franchise won’t be pressed into making a move unless a rotation player goes down with an injury. The Knicks are also considering using a 10-day pact on a young player who would play primarily in the D-League in order to learn the triangle offense, the New York Post scribe adds. Berman notes that New York has expressed some level of interest in Wroten but is concerned about his tendency to gamble on defense.

Here’s more from the Atlantic Division:

  • Celtics power forward Amir Johnson, who departed the Raptors as a free agent this past offseason, is missed by his former teammates and Toronto’s fans because of his tireless work ethic, Josh Lewenberg of TSN.ca writes. “I think fans appreciate hard work,” said Patrick Patterson, who spent a season and a half with Johnson with the Raptors. “They appreciate guys who lay it out every single night, who play with their heart and soul. Like I said, he was battling through injuries and he wasn’t sitting out. He wasn’t in the locker room not participating. He was out there every single night playing those games no matter how he felt, no matter how badly his body needed rest, he was out there every night with his heart and soul.
  • The Nets have hired well-known shooting coach David Nurse to work with their players, NetsDaily relays. Brooklyn is shooting 44.6% from the field and hitting just 31.8% of their 3-pointers on the season.
  • The Celtics own Brooklyn’s 2016 first round pick. which is likely to land in the top five, and the crew over at CSNNE.com looked at six potential draft targets for Boston. Besides the projected No. 1 overall pick, Ben Simmons of LSU, Boston is also likely to strongly consider Jaylen Brown (California), Buddy Hield (Oklahoma), Kris Dunn (Providence), Dragan Bender (Croatia) and Brandan Ingram (Duke).