Rodney Hood

Cavaliers Notes: Nance, Clarkson, Hill, Leonard

The Cavaliers aren’t likely to launch a complete rebuilding project if LeBron James leaves in free agency, writes writes Terry Pluto of Three of the players Cleveland acquired at this year’s trade deadline — Larry Nance Jr., Jordan Clarkson and George Hill — are all under contract for next year, and the Cavs want to see what they can do when they’re with the organization from the start of the season.

Cleveland is likely to discuss an extension with Nance, who will make $2.3MM next season on the final year of his rookie contract. Teams have called about trading for Nance, Pluto states, but the Cavaliers seem committed to keeping him. Clarkson struggled in the playoffs, but was a valuable bench scorer during the regular season and the Cavs recognize that this was his first postseason experience. Hill has limited trade value with a $17MM contract.

The future is more unpredictable for Rodney Hood, who seemed like a good young player in Utah but had a miserable time after the trade. Pluto expects the Cavaliers to tender a $3.4MM qualifying offer, giving them the right to match any offer Hood receives in free agency.

There’s more Cavaliers news this morning:

  • Cleveland is among the teams trying to pry Kawhi Leonard away from the Spurs, but assembling a workable offer won’t be easy, Pluto adds in the same story. Kevin Love, who will make $24.1MM next season with a player option close to $25.6MM for 2019/20, would be useful for salary-matching purposes, but San Antonio seems more interested in acquiring young talent than an established player like Love.
  • Shaquille O’Neal doesn’t think LeBron James should let the pursuit of more championships guide his free agency decision, relays Scott Gleeson of USA Today. “My problem toward the end of my career was I was trying to shut everybody up and I was greedy [for more championships],” O’Neal said. “After I got to three [titles], everybody was saying I couldn’t get another. So I got four. After I got the fourth, they were saying I couldn’t get another one. So I was trying to make quick stops to get it. Phoenix, Cleveland, Boston.” O’Neal adds that it will be difficult for James to overcome the Warriors no matter where he goes.
  • James’ decision will dominate the summer, but the Cavs have some under-the-radar moves to make as well, notes Bobby Marks of ESPN. Cleveland has a team option on veteran center Kendrick Perkins that must be exercised by June 29. His $2.4MM salary for 2018/19 would be non-guaranteed. Okaro White, who was signed late in the season, will get a chance to show what he can do during summer league. Half of his $1.5MM salary for next year will become guaranteed if he is still on the roster Aug. 5.

Eastern Notes: Hood, Ellington, Knicks, Sixers

The consensus among NBA insiders is that Rodney Hood cost himself a significant amount of future earnings in free agency after struggling to find his way in the playoffs, Joe Vardon of writes. Hood made slightly under $3.39M this past season and is set to become a restricted free agent once the league’s new year begins July 1.

Sources tell Vardon that the Cavaliers still like Hood and can envision a future with him on the team. The shooting guard fell out of the rotation during the latter half of the team’s postseason run before playing 52 minutes over the team’s last two NBA Finals contests. He finished the postseason with a plus/minus of -92 in a total of 260 minutes.

Here’s more from around the Eastern Conference:

Free Agent Stock Watch 2018: Cleveland Cavaliers

The 2017/18 season was an exhausting one for the Cavaliers and it ended the only way it possibly could: in a four-game sweep at the hands of the Warriors. While LeBron James put forth an historically impressive showing this year, the squad just wasn’t nearly deep enough to put another dent in Golden State’s dynasty.

The biggest story in Cleveland this summer will obviously be James’ forthcoming free agency. It’s no secret that the 33-year-old will have multiple realistic options to mull over this summer and the Cavaliers will have little choice but to wait and see what he decides before they set out with the rest of their plans.

To general manager Koby Altman‘s credit, the franchise was impressively proactive at the trade deadline, adding several players who could be a part of a rebuild for years to come. And to team owner Dan Gilbert‘s credit, he promoted Altman, a general manager he wanted, when there was pressure from James’ camp to retain David Griffin.

Expect the Cavs to welcome James back (and all the ensuing baggage) if the future Hall-of-Famer decides in earnest to end his career where it started, but my read of the situation is that Gilbert and company won’t exactly grovel if the King starts leaning toward taking his talents elsewhere.

Jose Calderon, PG, 36 (Up) – Signed to a one-year, $2MM deal in 2017
It’s hard to imagine Calderon signing on for anything more than the veteran’s minimum at this stage in his career, but a solid enough 2017/18 campaign in which he started 32 games for the Cavaliers should be enough to earn him another contract. The Cavs won’t have much use for the 36-year-old if they blow things up, so expect any decision regarding Calderon to come a little later in free agency.

Jeff Green, PF, 31 (Up) – Signed to a one-year, $2MM deal in 2017
It’s hard to gauge Green’s value considering he went from making $15MM in 2016/17 to the league minimum in 2017/18. Still, there’s no denying he was a bargain for the Cavaliers at just over $2MM. Despite a limited ceiling, Green is a solid role player and could be an affordable depth piece for a competitive team in Cleveland or elsewhere.

Rodney Hood, SG, 25 (Down) – Signed to a four-year, $6MM deal in 2014
Less than a year ago, Hood was in line to take over scoring duties for the suddenly Gordon Hayward-less Jazz. The swingman showed on a number of occasions in the first half of 2017/18 that he was capable of being a semi-reliable primary option on offense, but injuries and the rise of Donovan Mitchell complicated the restricted free agent’s big contract year. A slow start in Cleveland, coupled with a lousy postseason and one particularly bad decision will limit his value even further. That said, if Hood draws an offer sheet in the $10MM-$14MM range this offseason, he could end up being a bargain.

LeBron James, PF, 33 (Up) – Signed to a three-year, $100MM deal in 2016
Despite rampant speculation about James’ upcoming free agency, there’s no clear indication about what the superstar will do. The growing narrative is that James doesn’t have the supporting cast to compete with the likes of the superteams around him. While I’ll submit that he and his representation are partly to blame considering their insistence on leveraging James in order to land players like Tristan Thompson and J.R. Smith albatross contracts, there’s no denying that the Cavs’ roster looked empirically overwhelmed by the vastly deeper Warriors in the NBA Finals.

James, who looks more formidable than ever now as a 33-year-old, will earn every single penny available to him wherever he signs, but while there will be considerably more pennies available to him if he stays in Cleveland, it’s hard to imagine that somebody with a net worth of $400MM will base his decision entirely on wealth. Narrowing down where the King might land, then, comes down to figuring out his motives. If James wants to win rings he could either sign with the Sixers or squeeze his way onto the Rockets. If he wants to set himself up for life after basketball he should probably pack up the family and head over to join the Lakers. Of course, if James wants to preserve his uniquely complicated legacy, he should think long and hard about staying in Cleveland.

Kendrick Perkins, 33, C (Down) – Signed to a two-year deal in 2018
The Cavaliers added Perkins to their big league roster in the waning days of the regular season, but seem unlikely to pick up his option for 2018/19. While the veteran was brought on to provide an additional veteran voice in the locker room, his only notable feat in the postseason was getting into sideline altercation with Stephen Curry and Drake. Perkins is relatively young to be a symbolic elder statesmen, so there’s always the possibility that he signs on with another contender in a similar enforcer-turned-unofficial coach role, but don’t forget that he’s only seen action in one NBA contest since the 2015/16 season. His career could just as easily be over.

Is Rodney Hood The Answer For Cavs In 2018 NBA Finals?

Rodney Hood hasn’t played meaningful minutes since early in the postseason, but with the Cavaliers backed against the wall, it appears they’ll make a lineup change, allowing the 25-year-old to see some additional court time.

“We’re going to give Hood a chance,” Tyronn Lue said Tuesday (via Dave McMenamin of “He’ll get a shot, and see how he does. He’s been working, staying ready. So we’ll see.”

The Cavs acquired Hood mid-season in a three-team trade. In the deal:

  • The Cavs acquired Hood (from Jazz) and George Hill (from Kings) along with the draft rights to Arturas Gudaitis (from Kings).
  • The Jazz acquired Jae Crowder (from Cavs), Derrick Rose (from Cavs), and the right to swap 2024 second-round picks with the Cavs.
  • Kings acquired Iman Shumpert (from Cavs), Joe Johnson (from Jazz), the Heat’s 2020 second-round pick (from Cavs), cash ($2.1MM from Cavs; $1.1MM from Jazz), and the draft rights to Dimitrios Agravanis (from Cavs).

Prior to the trade, Hood was playing well, making 38.9% of his three-pointers on nearly seven attempts per contest in Utah. He was sporting a player efficiency rating of 15.1 and appeared to be on his way to landing a solid second contract in the league, as he’ll be a restricted free agent this summer.

Once he arrived in his Cleveland, his performance took a hit. In 21 regular season games with the Cavs, he made just 35.2% of his shots from behind the arc and sported a player efficiency rating of 12.7. Among Cleveland’s five-man lineups that played at least 30 minutes together this season, none featuring Hood had a positive rating, per

Part of the issue could be fit. Hood has played 64% of his minutes at the three in Cleveland; He spent 63% of his time at the two spot in Utah, per Basketball-Reference’s positional data.

Hood has proven he can’t elevate the team while playing heavy minutes next to the Cavs’ rotation of guards with defensive liabilities, but perhaps Lue plays him alongside one guard, planting him next to LeBron James and a pair of frontcourt players. Maybe that’s enough of an adjustment to make the NBA Finals a competitive series. Or maybe there is no way for the Cavs to come close to beating the Warriors four times over the next five contests.

How many games will the Cavs win in this series? If Hood receives playing time, will it make a difference? What do the next few games mean for the future of Cleveland and Hood’s pending free agency?

Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below. We look forward to hearing what you have to say!

Cavaliers Notes: Hood, James, Love

A feared scorer in Utah just a few months ago, Rodney Hood has spent much of the playoffs on the end of the Cavaliers’ bench, writes Ben Golliver of Sports Illustrated. Hood was expected to boost Cleveland’s offense when he was acquired as part of a flurry of moves at the deadline. He raised hopes with a 15-point performance in his Cavs’ debut, but since then has struggled to fit in with his new team.

“This is my first time ever having DNPs in my life,” Hood said. “I look back at my Utah highlights on YouTube just to remind myself, ‘That was this year.'”

Hood’s numbers have nosedived in the postseason, where he is averaging 4.6 points per game, shooting 15.8% on 3-pointers and playing just 14.5 minutes per night. The Cavaliers will have a decision to make this summer on Hood, who will be a restricted free agent.

There’s more news out of Cleveland:

  • For those looking for signs that LeBron James is ready to leave the Cavaliers again, Thursday’s Game 1 loss offered more evidence, writes Scott Stinson of The National Post. James’ exasperation with J.R. Smith after his mental mistake at the end of regulation and the abrupt way he left the post-game press conference can both be interpreted as growing frustration. Stinson suggests that James is more likely to head elsewhere in free agency if Cleveland can’t remain competitive for the rest of the Finals, but could be tempted to stay if it’s a close series.
  • The Cavaliers have gone through massive roster turnover since their first Finals meeting with the Warriors in 2015, but they hope to draw on that experience tonight, relays Brian Windhorst of ESPN“We were resilient, fought back and forced it to 1-1 back to Cleveland,” recalls Kevin Love, one of four Cavs left from that team. “We’re hoping to do the same. But we’ve got to come out really in those first five minutes [in Game 2] and show what we’re capable of and set the tone.”
  • ESPN’s Kevin Pelton examines whether James makes his teammates better, charting the performance of many of the players who have been with him since he returned to Cleveland.

Cavaliers Notes: Smith, D. Jordan, James, Draft Pick

J.R. Smith won’t face any repercussions from the league for a hard foul on Al Horford in Tuesday’s Game 2, according to an ESPN report. Horford was in the air late in the fourth quarter when Smith shoved him from behind, causing him to crash to the court. The officials called a flagrant 1 on Smith after a video review.

Smith agreed with the call when interviewed after the game, admitting he “blatantly” shoved Horford.

“It wasn’t like I was trying to low-bridge him or something to make sure he didn’t get it. It was a good, hard foul,” Smith said. “I can understand why they gave me a flagrant.”

There’s more today from Cleveland:

  • Smith has been through a lot of scrapes in his 14-year career and doesn’t mind playing the role of villain in playoff road games, relays A. Sherrod Blakely of NBC Sports Boston. “I don’t want the opposing fans to like me,” he said. “That’s not why I’m here. They can chant and scream all they want.”
  • LeBron James  and coach Tyronn Lue both wanted to trade for Clippers center DeAndre Jordan at the deadline, according to Jason Lloyd of The Athletic. Lue felt the team needed a rim protector to anchor the defense.
  • The trades the Cavaliers made instead in February are letting them down in the conference finals, notes Terry Pluto of George Hill managed just three points in 33 minutes of Game 2 and couldn’t contain Celtics guard Terry Rozier. Rodney Hood didn’t take a shot from the field in 11 minutes, while Larry Nance Jr. was scoreless and Jordan Clarkson didn’t play.
  • The Nets’ first-rounder the Cavaliers acquired in the Kyrie Irving trade will strengthen their position whether LeBron James stays or not, contends Joe Vardon of The Cavs will have 14 of their 17 players under contract for next season if James returns, but they have minimal guarantees beyond that, which will make rebuilding easier if it becomes necessary. Vardon suggests the team might try to trade Kevin Love again this summer and speculates that the Hornets could be interested in the No. 8 pick as a way to part with Kemba Walker‘s contract.
  • A podcast on examines whether James’ future with the organization is tied to how the team performs in the conference finals.

Central Notes: Hood, Cavs, Pacers, Maker

While reports in the wake of Game 4 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals indicated that Rodney Hoodrefused” to enter the game for the Cavaliers, he classified it a little differently in his explanation to reporters, as Nick Schwartz of USA Today details.

“They called my name, they did call my name, but I was like, ‘Just let Jose (Calderon play),'” Hood said. “He was warm and ready to play, so I said, ‘Just let him.’ I should have took it more serious, went in there, got some reps up.”

It may be a matter of semantics whether Hood “refused” to enter the game or just politely passed on the opportunity, but for what it’s worth, the rest of the Cavs don’t seem to be holding a grudge. According to Joe Vardon of, after he apologized on Thursday, Hood said that his teammates just laughed at him, pointing out that after all the drama the team has been through this season, they didn’t need to blow the Game 4 incident out of proportion.

“Things like that happen in the course of a season,” Kevin Love said. “I mean, I’ve only known Rodney for a short period of time, but I know he’s a great guy. I know he’s here to win. Was that a great decision? Maybe not. But he came in today, said he’s all in and we believe him.”

While we wait to see if Hood regains a spot in the Cavs’ rotation in the Eastern Conference Finals, here are a few more notes from around the Central:

  • The Cavaliers were praised after the trade deadline for acquiring young, controllable players like Jordan Clarkson and Larry Nance Jr., but given how little they contributed during the Cavs’ four-game sweep of Toronto, Berry Tramel of The Oklahoman wonders whether that trade was a mistake for Cleveland.
  • Sean Deveney of The Sporting News previews the Pacers‘ offseason, observing that president of basketball operations Kevin Pritchard will have a narrow line to walk as he looks to improve Indiana’s roster without handing out or taking on any bad long-term contracts.
  • It’s possible that All-Star caliber players like Kawhi Leonard and Kemba Walker will be on the trade market this offseason, prompting J. Michael of The Indianapolis Star to explore whether it would be worth it for the Pacers to pursue any big-time trade candidates.
  • Bucks big man Thon Maker intends to suit up for Australia during the FIBA 2019 World Cup qualifiers this summer, as he tells

Cavs’ Rodney Hood Refused To Enter Game 4

10:59am: Hood will not face a fine or suspension for refusing to enter Game 4 on Monday, reports Jeff Zillgitt of USA Today. According to Zilgitt’s source, Hood spoke to the Cavs’ front office on Tuesday morning, and the fourth-year guard “feels badly for causing a distraction” as Cleveland enters the Eastern Finals.

Dave McMenamin of ESPN reports that Hood intends to apologize in person to his teammates and the Cavs’ coaching staff as soon as possible.

8:51am: The Cavaliers finished off a four-game sweep of the Raptors on Monday night, returning to the Eastern Conference Finals for a fourth straight year. However, not all is rosy in Cleveland, according to Jason Lloyd of The Athletic. Lloyd hears from multiple sources that Rodney Hood refused to enter Monday’s game in the fourth quarter, angering some teammates and members of the organization.

With the Cavaliers up by 30 points with less than eight minutes to play in the fourth quarter, head coach Tyronn Lue wanted to insert Hood into the lineup in place of LeBron James, per Lloyd. However, multiple sources tell Lloyd that Hood refused to check in, even after multiple veterans huddled around him and talked to him. Jose Calderon eventually entered the game instead.

Hood, acquired by the Cavaliers in one of their trade-deadline deals, has been ineffective in the postseason, averaging 4.6 PPG on .396/.133/.750 shooting in 10 games (17.0 MPG). His struggles couldn’t come at a worse time — besides giving the Cavs little value during the team’s playoff run, he’s also less than two months from hitting the restricted free agent market.

According to Lloyd, Cavs GM Koby Altman plans to meet with Hood to get his side of the story and find out why he refused to enter Game 4. While it’s possible that Hood was dealing with a physical ailment, multiple people who witnessed the exchange tell Lloyd it looked more like “a young player pouting.” Lloyd speculates that a suspension isn’t out of the realm of possibility, adding that Hood may not maintain his usual rotation role going forward.

Northwest Notes: Thibodeau, Exum, Hood, George

Timberwolves coach and president of basketball operations Tom Thibodeau shook up his coaching staff Monday by cutting ties with three assistants, Jon Krawczynski of The Athletic reports. The most notable of the cuts is player development coach Vince Legarza, who worked closely with center Karl-Anthony Towns. Shooting coach Peter Patton and assistant video coordinator Wes Bohn are the other coaches who will not return. Towns was not given prior notice of Legarza’s departure, Krawczynski continues. Thibodeau may not replace all of those coaches since he has told some people that he’d like to downsize, Krawczynski adds.

In other notable developments around the Northwest Division:

  • Jazz point guard Dante Exum has a strained left hamstring and his status for the remainder of the series against the Rockets is uncertain, Shams Charania of Yahoo Sports tweets. Exum underwent an MRI and further evaluation Monday after he suffered the injury in Game 4. Exum and Ricky Rubio, who also has a hamstring injury, will not play in Game 5 on Tuesday, the team tweets.
  • There’s no chance guard Rodney Hood will return to the Jazz as a free agent, Tony Jones of the Salt Lake Tribune tweets.  Hood will be a restricted free agent if he receives a $3.47MM qualifying offer from the Cavaliers. Otherwise, he’ll be unrestricted.
  • The Thunder are willing to pay the steep cost of retaining free agent Paul George, according to Brett Dawson of The Oklahoman.  George will likely sign a max contract in free agency this summer. The team wants to remain competitive, even if it means footing the bill for $260MM in salary and luxury-tax penalties, Dawson adds.

Cavaliers Notes: LeBron, Hill, Hood

LeBron James may be facing a unique “win or leave home” scenario in tomorrow’s Game 7 with the Pacers, writes Tom Withers of The Associated Press. No matter when the Cavaliers’ season ends, speculation will immediately begin about James’ destination in free agency. Considering the heavy load he has carried for his team in the regular season and playoffs at age 33, James may be looking for a situation where he has more help.

After Friday’s loss in Indiana, James said he hasn’t given any consideration to free agency or the potential magnitude of Sunday’s contest.

“The thought that if we don’t play well that it will be my last game of the year will probably hit my mind,” James responded when asked about the possible end to a second era in Cleveland. “But I haven’t thought about that.” (Twitter link).

There’s more today out of Cleveland:

  • Count Marc Stein of the New York Times among the voices who expect James to leave the Cavaliers. In his weekly newsletter, Stein speculates that Philadelphia is the most likely destination for James, stating the Sixers have “growing behind-the-scenes confidence” that they can land this summer’s top free agent. He adds that the path to the NBA Finals remains easier in the East, which is why he expects James to pass on offers from the Lakers and Rockets.
  • Coach Tyronn Lue is “optimistic” that George Hill will be ready for Game 7, but his status may not be determined until game time, relays Chris Fedor of Hill was able to participate in practice today and did extra shooting work afterward. “Moved around good today, played 5-on-5 with some of the guys and felt decent so just have to see how his back reacts after that,” Lue said. “Moved around pretty good, so we will see.” Hill has missed the past three games with back spasms.
  • Rodney Hood will draw on experience as he prepares for the second Game 7 of his career. In a video posted on the Cavaliers’ website, Hood reflects on going through the same thing with the Jazz last season when they topped the Clippers in a series-deciding game. “Last year’s Game 7 was on the road, so you know the type of atmosphere,” said Hood, who was acquired from Utah at the trade deadline. “It’s kind of different, but at the same time it’s win or go home. We don’t want our season to end, so we’ve got to come out ready to play. Play confident and I think we’ll be all right.”