View Full Version : 2010 NBA Offseason

06-06-2010, 03:33 PM
Thibodeau Will Accept Bulls Job

The Bulls have presented Tom Thibodeau with a three-year offer to become their next head coach and Thibodeau is prepared to accept, according to sources.

Sources said Thibodeau is expected to keep Pete Myers on his staff and bring with him former Bulls and current Thunder assistant Ron Adams. Other candidates for his staff include Thunder assistant Mo Cheeks, former Knicks assistant Andy Greer and former Kings coach Eric Musselman.

Former Bulls Kevin Ollie and Rick Brunson will be considered for player development roles, joining expected holdover Randy Brown.

Read more: http://www.realgm.com/src_wiretap_archives/67025/20100605/thibodeau_will_accept_bulls_job/#ixzz0q3Wjy0mP

06-10-2010, 12:14 PM
Here's a very funny piece by Michael Rosenberg of SI.com about a fictitious free agent summit on Larry King live. Panalo!


06-21-2010, 03:10 PM
I saw on a Russian television channel a few days ago that Andrei Kirilenko may join the New Jersey Nets.

06-21-2010, 03:17 PM
The barometer for next season is how to match-up with the twin towers of the LA Lakers.

During Shaquille O'Neal's prime, the rest of the teams tried to match-up with O'Neal by acquiring big men who can defend Shaq. Philadelphia 76ers traded for Dikembe Mutombo while the Portland Trail Blazers traded then a young Jermaine O'Neal for veteran Dale Davis. These two moves were to match-up with a potential showdown in the playoffs with LA's O'Neal.

For the Celts, KG and Rasheed will get older next season while Big Baby Davis is undersized. Undersized was the problem of the Western Conference teams this past playoffs against LA; Carlos Boozer of Utah and Amare Stoudemire of Phoenix.

The Lakers did a brilliant move last offseason in acquiring Ron Artest in anticipation of a Finals showdown with LeBron and the Cavs.

06-21-2010, 04:33 PM
Assuming Ray Allen stays plus Boston will use their mid level exception for a contributor off the bench (say John Salmons or Luis Scola), Boston is still a contender. I dont see them a regular season favorite but they can still kill teams come playoff due to their experience.

The impact of losing Thibodeau will be bigger compared to adding another year to Garnett and Rasheed's age. I dont see Pierce's game diminishing at the rate KG did since Pierce is not reliant on any explosive athleticism since entering the NBA. Same with Ray Allen.

06-25-2010, 09:41 AM
Bulls found a taker for Hinrich's contract + 17 pick in Washington. By making such, Bulls is now the #1 most appealing free agency destination for Lebron for the following key reasons:

1. Tom Thibodeau was recently named as the new franchise coach. No head coaching experience but brings a lot of experience from rebuilding to winning championships as assistant coach.
2. Cap space capable of signing to 2 max salary free agents (Lebron, Wade, Bosh, Amare, Joe Johnson)

06-25-2010, 10:12 AM
In another stunning news, Rasheed Wallace annouced his retirement.

06-25-2010, 12:27 PM
^What's more stunning is Sheed's reported plan to coach high school basketball. He said he doesn't want to coach anything above high school because he wouldn't be able to stand the players' attitude. :D I guess he knows a thing or two about that. ;D

Seriously, supposedly he talked to Doc Rivers and Larry Brown about borrowing their offensive playbooks.

Mateen Cleaves
06-25-2010, 04:16 PM
Actually, Sheed has always had a reputation as a good teacher/mentor to younger teammates, especially the bigs. At Portland, he had Jermaine O' Neal. At Detroit, he had Mehmet Okur, Jason Maxiell, and Amir Johnson to tutor. Sometimes he even gave tips to opposing bigs, during a game. One time, beat reporters asked him why he was giving tips on low post play to Dwight Howard. Sheed answered that it would be good for the game. Then he added that he didn't share all his secrets with Howard. While he did show Howard one particular move, Sheed said he was still one step ahead because only he knew the countermove. Just like a kung fu master. :)

06-25-2010, 05:59 PM
Dang. That must be the reason why Howard hoisted three point shots during all star game. ;D

06-25-2010, 07:04 PM
Shet! idol ko pa naman yang si Rasheed!!! Kapag sya nagsalita, it's always guaran-DAMN-sheed!

06-30-2010, 09:06 AM

Nets trade Yi to Wizards

By Adrian Wojnarowski, Yahoo! Sports

The New Jersey Nets have traded Yi Jianlian to the Washington Wizards, a league source said, to move themselves $30 million under the salary cap for free agency.

Washington sent Quinton Ross to the Nets for Yi, who has been traded twice since the Milwaukee Bucks selected him with the sixth overall pick in the 2008 draft. The Nets also sent $3 million to the Wizards.

New Nets coach Avery Johnson didn’t consider Yi a fit for his system, and the Nets were anxious to clear even more cap space to make a run at LeBron James and several major free agents.

The Nets will gain $3 million in savings on the trade.

Yi gives the Wizards a versatile 7-footer, who showed flashes of emerging as a good player a season ago.

06-30-2010, 07:55 PM
Wow. $30 million below the salary cap plus a Russian Billionaire owner who I think is willing to spend everything to turn the Nets into title contenders.

Lebron, Wade, Bosh all the way! Form the new Big 3 in the East.

06-30-2010, 10:52 PM
Pierce is reportedly opting out the final year (21 M) of his contract with the hope of getting a 4-year 90 M deal.

His situation is probably the same as of Dirk since there's an impending lock-out next year.

Good luck. 20 M plus every year for a player near his middle 30's ;D


07-03-2010, 03:00 PM
John Salmons is reportedly staying with the Bucks while Steve Blake agree to a 4-year deal with the Lakers.

07-03-2010, 09:27 PM

Steve Blake goes to the Lakers.

07-04-2010, 12:15 AM
^bakit naman si steve blake jung pwede namang si chris paul!? ;) ;) ;)

07-04-2010, 10:14 AM
Alleged copy of New York Knicks presentation to Lebron in their free agency meeting.


07-04-2010, 07:40 PM
Alleged copy of New York Knicks presentation to Lebron in their free agency meeting.


Ano panama niyan sa pitch ng Cleveland kay LBJ?


Sam Miguel
07-05-2010, 08:13 AM
For the National Basketball Association this July promises to be an epochal period in their history. There are just so many tantalizing scenarios to consider, too many what-if exercises. Although Lebron James is without a doubt the biggest figure in this entire scenario, this summer is about so much more than where the greatest free agent of all time will play his most productive years.

Think about it: Wherever James goes – and there is no guarantee he will even leave Cleveland at all – there are just too many other talented players out there who might have different addresses by this November. There are just too many teams with a lot of money to spend; some of them are even willing to go over such niggling hurdles as the salary cap and the luxury tax. They may not win the so-called Lebron James Sweepstakes, but there are plenty of deals to be made out there. These other deals might prove to be more pivotal than landing the self-proclaimed King.

Guys the caliber of Chris Bosh or Joe Johnson or even Paul Pierce and Dirk Nowitzki might all wind up in the same uniform, like say in New Jersey, or perhaps even Chicago or Miami. Heaven help the rest of the league if any or a combination of these guys should ever decide they’d take the league minimum for a chance to win a Three-Peat with Kobe Bryant and the Lakers; with or without Phil Jackson.

Therefore, James might be getting the most ink, virtual and actual, but other movements might prove to be more pivotal in shaping the NBA in the next decade. Surely no one thought that much of it when Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen went to Boston to join Paul Pierce and Doc Rivers a couple of years ago. The same can be said just a few years prior to this about getting Richard Hamilton, Chauncey Billups, Tayshaun Prince, Rasheed Wallace and Ben Wallace all together in Detroit under Larry Brown. Both of these teams went on to win the NBA Title against a highly favored Lakers side.

Keeping that in mind, where James goes suddenly does not seem as important as where everybody else is going. At this time, it is more certain that Dwayne Wade will stay in Miami. He might be able to convince at least one of the other top tier free agents not named Lebron to join him there. Wade running pick and rolls with Amare Stoudemire and/or Chris Bosh would be a nightmare for the rest of the league. Imagine them if they were out in transition: Wade as the anchor, Stoudemire the finisher, Bosh the trailer.

How about Carlos Boozer and Joe Johnson getting a clue, agreeing to go to Chicago, and playing alongside the young duo of Derrick Rose, Luol Deng and Joakim Noah. Even if that combination isn’t enough to get out of the East, they will most certainly make getting out the East equally tough for any other team.

And then there are the Lakers, just come from defending their title against the Celtics. Yes, Bryant reminded no one of Michael Jordan in this latest title run. Bryant was struggling against these Celtics, and in spite of what anyone else may think he certainly did not trust them as much as Jordan did his teams. But they are poised to win another title, the second Three-Peat in the Bryant Era. Having just one more superstar, preferably a legit post presence, even for just this one title drive will assure the balance of power remains on the Pacific side.

If a Bosh or even a Boozer were to come over, Jackson will most certainly not waiver about returning to take a crack at that second Three-Peat. Mitch Kupchak would have to be given a bronze statue of himself if he pulls this off. Imagine how much better Pau Gasol and Andrew Bynum will be if they had Boozer up front with them. They’d bludgeon the rest of the league with post and corner pick-and-roll plays. Try stopping a quick 6-foot-9 260-pound power forward rolling off a screen from a 7-foot 285-pound center, and a 7-foot 255-pound forward-center waiting to clean up.

Even if James does stay in Cleveland there are just too many questions about what other personnel moves the Cavaliers themselves might make. Maverick Carter, a long-time James crony, has the run of the Cavaliers organization. He might be making some deals here and there. Now that Chris Paul has not been declared untouchable in Charlotte, that could be yet another scenario worth exploring by Team Lebron. They might even be able to entice David Lee out of New York. Imagine having James, Lee and Paul on the floor. Suddenly this is a team that could win a lot of titles together over several years.

In any event, the Cavaliers better not be looking just to keep James, but to be more serious about who surrounds him. Shaquille O’Neal has four championship rings and was still of little help to James. Who else is out there? Who could they realistically bring in? James is going for the smart play and going to where the money, fame and greater opportunities are. But for someone like him, there will never be a replacement for that championship trophy. He knows he cannot get it all alone, He needs help, and wherever he goes they have to get that help for him.

The rest of the NBA certainly will not just be watching and waiting as others have suggested. Intelligent organizations who know how to win will move regardless of what James and his cronies do. Bryant and Los Angeles offers anybody willing to take a pay cut a championship destination, not just a championship contender. Miami has youth, star power, a heck of a location, and the possibility of having Pat Riley returning to coaching. Mark Cuban and Mikhail Prokhorov have more money than God and do not even blink at throwing it at expensive stuff like NBA superstars.

Depending on how much money changes hands and how much ink is put down on paper, there is more to this July than the so-called Summer of Lebron.

07-06-2010, 07:35 AM
Stoudemire agrees to five-year deal with Knicks
By David Aldridge, TNT analyst

The New York Knicks finally got a return on their two years of self-induced misery on Monday, finishing up the final touches on a five-year contract for Phoenix Suns free agent forward Amar'e Stoudemire that is expected to be worth around $100 million. A source indicates a formal announcement from Stoudemire should be forthcoming within the hour at Madison Square Garden.


Sam Miguel
07-06-2010, 09:05 AM
Now that Steve Blake is with the Lakers, GM Mitch Kupchak should train his sights on Brendan Haywood and Mike Miller, two guys with talent but not quite big-name stars, to bolster Phil Jackson's triangle. Blake is already pointguard insurance with his handles, passing and dribble-drive. Andrew Bynum's knee is too questionable; Haywood serves as insurance there off the boards and on the help and off-side blocks. Miller brings much-needed long-range firepower and some handles to ensure that the burden of that coming off the bench is not fully on Sasha Vujacic. Bring the last two guys in and the Lakers are a lock to take another 3-Peat.

07-08-2010, 07:46 AM

Bosh to join Wade in signing with Heat

By Adrian Wojnarowski and Marc J. Spears, Yahoo! Sports

Dwyane Wade(notes) and Chris Bosh(notes) have decided to sign with the Miami Heat while continuing to recruit LeBron James(notes) to help them form an All-Star triumvirate that threatens to shift the NBA’s balance of power, two sources with knowledge of the plans told Yahoo! Sports.

“They think they’ve got a real chance to pull this off with LeBron,” a league source said.

Said an official with one team that made a formal presentation to James: “It’s down to Cleveland or Miami for him.”

Still, other league executives weren’t yet ready to rule out the Knicks.

The three players shared a call after midnight on Wednesday, when Wade and Bosh told James they were committing to the Heat, a source said. James didn’t commit with them, but kept his own plans private for a television announcement on Thursday night. Wade and Bosh formally announced their decision on Wednesday afternoon.

“I’m so glad it’s over,” Wade said in an interview with The Associated Press. “I had to do what was best for me. And I know I did that.”

Wade and Bosh decided they needed to make a commitment to give them the best possible chance of luring more talent – including James – with the additional salary-cap space in Miami.

Had James been able to convince Bosh to come to Cleveland in a sign-and-trade, sources said Wade had decided he would leave Miami for the Chicago Bulls.

Only now, the Heat need to dump more salary – namely, Michael Beasley – to get more space to sign James. If Wade takes a max deal, his salary will start at $16.5 million next season – which leaves just under $30 million under the cap for Bosh and James. The Heat would look to move Beasley’s $4.9 million to a team with cap space to create more room.

If James doesn’t come, the Heat are targeting free agent Mike Miller to take part of the third salary slot with Wade and Bosh. Wade has been personally pushing Miller to Heat president Pat Riley, sources said. Miller has Miami at the top of his list, sources close to him said. New York, Chicago and the Los Angeles Clippers are also among his most aggressive pursuers.

With Bosh and Wade committed, the Chicago Bulls moved quickly to reach agreement on a five-year, $80 million contract with Carlos Boozer. The New Jersey Nets were also in talks with Boozer and may now try to sign David Lee.

ESPN first reported Wade and Bosh’s plans.

07-08-2010, 07:50 AM

Source: Bulls to sign Boozer

By Adrian Wojnarowski, Yahoo! Sports

The Chicago Bulls have reached agreement with Carlos Boozer(notes) on a five-year contract worth $80 million, league sources told Yahoo! Sports.

The Bulls moved quickly to secure a commitment from Boozer after Dwyane Wade(notes) decided to re-sign with the Miami Heat and bring Chris Bosh(notes) with him.

Boozer joins a talented young core that includes point guard Derrick Rose and center Joakim Noah. The Bulls also have enough salary-cap room left to sign another player to a maximum contract.

Boozer mentioned the Bulls last summer as a team in which he hoped to be traded. Three of his six seasons with the Utah Jazz were cut short by injuries, but he missed just four games last season while averaging 19.5 points and 11.2 rebounds.

07-08-2010, 07:52 AM

Durant agrees to $85 million extension

By Marc J. Spears, Yahoo! Sports

Kevin Durant(notes) has reached agreement with the Oklahoma City Thunder on a five-year contract extension that could be worth nearly $85 million.

Durant announced his signing on his Twitter account on Wednesday morning. His agent Aaron Goodwin confirmed the maximum deal to Yahoo! Sports.

League rules don’t permit Durant to sign the contract until Thursday. The final numbers for the extension won’t be known until the NBA releases its salary-cap figures on the same day.

“It’s a great opportunity for Kevin and his family,” Goodwin said. “It’s what he wanted from Day One.”

Durant, the second overall pick in the 2007 draft, was the NBA’s leading scorer last season, averaging 30.1 points per game. He just completed his third season with the Thunder and will turn 22 on Sept. 29.

“Me and my family came a long way,” Durant tweeted. “…This is a blessing!”

Durant’s extension will kick in during the 2011-12 season. It doesn’t contain an opt-out clause in the fourth year.

“Kevin realized the commitment from Oklahoma City,” Goodwin said. “So he wanted to make a commitment back to Oklahoma City to make the fourth year a non-issue.”

07-08-2010, 11:11 AM
Amare to New York. Boozer to Chicago. Bosh to Miami. Ray-ray and Pierce stays with Boston.

Last year, only 3 East teams were considered elite teams (Boston, Orlando and Cleveland). Do all these transactions make the East the better conference now? Since the end of the Jordan era, the West has been the the stronger conference (50 wins or more playoff teams, 9 of the past 12 NBA champs came from the West).

LeBron will definitely stay in the east. Sorry Clippers. ;D Whichever team gets to sign LeBron is 100% playoff-bound. The only question is: Would it be a 1st round/2nd round team or a ECF/Finals material team?


07-08-2010, 11:48 AM
Lebron is supposed to annouce his final destination in ESPN 1 hour special tomorrow. With that I am thinking he is staying in Cleveland for the sole reason it doesnt make sense breaking Cleveland fans heart in front of national media like ESPN.

07-08-2010, 02:40 PM
Lebron is supposed to annouce his final destination in ESPN 1 hour special tomorrow. With that I am thinking he is staying in Cleveland for the sole reason it doesnt make sense breaking Cleveland fans heart in front of national media like ESPN.

Yes that's what I heard last night from ESPN Sportscenter. Tomorrow 9am Manila time.

It was also mentioned from that program that Chris Bosh was actually that close from making a sign-and-trade deal to Cleveland. Toronoto was willing to a sign-and-trade Bosh. But Bosh doesn't want to go to Cleveland.

07-08-2010, 02:59 PM

Lebron to South Florida along with Wade and Bosh???


07-08-2010, 03:19 PM

07-08-2010, 06:59 PM
Miami sign-and-trade Wade and Bosh to Cleveland for Lebron, Mo, & Hickson :D

Wade, Bosh, Jamison = The New Big 3 ;D

07-09-2010, 02:31 AM
Anyone here besides me who thinks LeBron is in a "damned if you do, damned if you don't" situation?

If he chooses Miami - He's not a GOAT-worthy candidate but only a ring chaser SOB.
If he stays with Cleveland - His loyalty is amazing but who cares? He's still an attention wh*re.
If he chooses Chicago - No matter what you do you'll never be able to match Jordan's legacy.
If he chooses New York -So it's all about money, money, money and more money?
If he chooses New Jersey - You got a man crush on Jay-Z right?


Sam Miguel
07-09-2010, 10:01 AM
Lebron James has officially announced he is joing good friends Dwayne Wade and Chris Bosh in Miami.

He is looking to make less money over less guaranteed years, which might mean he has finally decided that a real chance at winning an NBA Championship is the most important thing in any NBA career.

Now the burden is on him to make this work, and to finally gain the one thing that all the great ones have: an NBA championship.

How I wish friggin' Miami had a roster though. Only Mario Chalmers and Michael Beasley have live contracts. They'd better see to holding on to Dorel Wright, and maybe convincing Mike Miller to sign on as well, albeit for less money.

If they can swing it, and since he is now with LRMR, maybe get Chris Paul into this mix as well.

Wow: Wade, Lebron, Bosh and CP3, all on one team... No excuse not to win it all now, not with this payroll.

07-09-2010, 10:19 AM
interesting who will make up their starting center and point guard position. Now that J. O'Neal is w/ the Celts already..

if I were LBJ, i would go to Chicago... with Derrick Rose, Boozer and Noah... kumpleto on all positions... but that's just me :)

Toto Battung
07-09-2010, 10:35 AM
LeBron James was asked if part of his decision to go to Miami is because Pat Riley is going back as a coach. He said, Erik Spoelstra is the coach, and he admires him because he is a good young coach. Miami Heat is now a power in the NBA. But can they beat Phil Jackson's Los Angeles Lakers?

07-09-2010, 11:48 AM

Open Letter to Fans from Cavaliers Majority Owner Dan Gilbert

Dear Cleveland, All Of Northeast Ohio and Cleveland Cavaliers Supporters Wherever You May Be Tonight;

As you now know, our former hero, who grew up in the very region that he deserted this evening, is no longer a Cleveland Cavalier.

This was announced with a several day, narcissistic, self-promotional build-up culminating with a national TV special of his “decision” unlike anything ever “witnessed” in the history of sports and probably the history of entertainment.

Clearly, this is bitterly disappointing to all of us.

The good news is that the ownership team and the rest of the hard-working, loyal, and driven staff over here at your hometown Cavaliers have not betrayed you nor NEVER will betray you.

There is so much more to tell you about the events of the recent past and our more than exciting future. Over the next several days and weeks, we will be communicating much of that to you.

You simply don’t deserve this kind of cowardly betrayal.

You have given so much and deserve so much more.

In the meantime, I want to make one statement to you tonight:


You can take it to the bank.

If you thought we were motivated before tonight to bring the hardware to Cleveland, I can tell you that this shameful display of selfishness and betrayal by one of our very own has shifted our “motivation” to previously unknown and previously never experienced levels.

Some people think they should go to heaven but NOT have to die to get there.

Sorry, but that’s simply not how it works.

This shocking act of disloyalty from our home grown “chosen one” sends the exact opposite lesson of what we would want our children to learn. And “who” we would want them to grow-up to become.

But the good news is that this heartless and callous action can only serve as the antidote to the so-called “curse” on Cleveland, Ohio.

The self-declared former “King” will be taking the “curse” with him down south. And until he does “right” by Cleveland and Ohio, James (and the town where he plays) will unfortunately own this dreaded spell and bad karma.

Just watch.

Sleep well, Cleveland.

Tomorrow is a new and much brighter day….

I PROMISE you that our energy, focus, capital, knowledge and experience will be directed at one thing and one thing only:

DELIVERING YOU the championship you have long deserved and is long overdue….


Dan Gilbert
Majority Owner
Cleveland Cavaliers

07-09-2010, 12:20 PM
^It is clearly understable that Dan Gilbert is very bitter with LeBron's decision. He is also partly to blame for the self-titled "king's" bloated ego by pampering and treating him like one during his tenure in Cleveland. Instead of teaching responsibility to Bronbron, Dan gave in to every whim of the "king" which just fueled his narcissistic attitude. Gilbert has no one to blame but himself of this debacle.

07-09-2010, 01:03 PM
Actually I don't get this rant by the owner. This is free agency right! Out of contract players have a chance to choose where they want to go.

Lebron has played 7 years for Cleveland! If not for Lebron Cleveland wouldn't even have tasted an appearance in the NBA finals! It is true that they tried to improve the team but it wasn't working.

07-09-2010, 02:59 PM

Knicks’ Lee headed to Warriors in sign-and-trade

By BRIAN MAHONEY, AP Basketball Writer

NEW YORK (AP)—David Lee(notes) is headed from the New York Knicks to the Golden State Warriors in a sign-and-trade deal, the All-Star forward’s agent said Thursday.

Mark Bartelstein said Lee will get a six-year, $80 million contract. The Knicks will receive forwards Anthony Randolph(notes), Kelenna Azubuike(notes) and Ronny Turiaf(notes).

Lee has been the Knicks’ most popular and productive player under coach Mike D’Antoni, but the team wouldn’t commit to signing him so it could preserve enough salary cap room to afford two maximum salary players.

The Knicks gave one of those contracts to Amare Stoudemire, who signed Thursday and plays the same position as Lee, then agreed to work on the sign-and-trade so Lee could earn a sixth year in the deal.

“There was a lot of different ways this could have gone and I needed them to help,” Bartelstein said. “They were great about it.”

Lee was likely the best free agent left on the market. He averaged 20.2 and 11.7 rebounds last season and has developed a reliable outside shot in recent years.

The Knicks could have lost him last summer, but Lee didn’t receive an offer in a market where many teams were saving money for this free agency period. But he had plenty of options this time around.

Lee spent all five years in New York, where he was respected for playing hard on losing teams.

“David loved his time in New York,” Bartelstein said. “They gave David an incredible opportunity the last few years.”

Randolph was Golden State’s first-round pick in 2008 but fell out of favor with coach Don Nelson and played only 33 games last season. Azubuike was limited to just nine games before a season-ending knee injury.

07-09-2010, 03:12 PM
Bad press left and right for Lebroom:

LeBron hardly a king for taking the easy way out with star-laden Heat

Read more: http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2010/writers/michael_rosenberg/07/08/lebron.event/#ixzz0tAOtdzIE

GREENWICH, Conn., July 8, 1990 -- Michael Jordan announced on national television he's leaving Chicago to join the Detroit Pistons. Jordan said it was tough to bolt Chicago, where he was the most popular athlete in many years, because he thinks he has a better chance to win a championship if he plays with Pistons star Isiah Thomas. Jordan said by playing together, he and Thomas "won't have the pressure of going out and scoring 30 every night."

That would have sounded absurd, right? Well, it is no more absurd than what LeBron James is doing. Jordan was 27 years old in 1990, slightly older than James is now. He had never been to the NBA Finals. He had been beaten up by the Celtics and Pistons for years. He doubted his supporting cast was good enough.

But he never doubted himself.

And it became very clear Thursday night that LeBron James does doubt himself. James will be a champion in Miami -- if not next year, then sometime after that. If you put James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh together and give Pat Riley five years to find the complementary pieces, that team will win a championship.

But James does not have the heart of a champion. He does not have the competitive fire of Jordan, the bull-headed determination of Kobe Bryant, the quiet self-confidence of Tim Duncan, the willful defiance of Isiah or the winning-is-everything hunger of Magic Johnson.

He is an extremely gifted player who wants the easy way out.

And how do we know this?

James said so himself.

Oh, not in so many words. But once ESPN was done ESPN-izing its LeBron coverage -- filling it with babbling experts, needless hype and Jim Gray submitting his top six entries in the Stupidest Question Ever contest -- the self-proclaimed King said everything you need to know about him.

1. "You have to do what's best for you, and what's going to make you happy."

This is what's going to make him happy? Sharing a stage with two other stars? Really?

I guess that's all LeBron is: A complementary player with superstar talent. We should have figured this out before: He got that giant CHOSEN 1 tattoo on his back and calls himself King James because he is desperate for reassurance.

There is no greater challenge in sports getting drafted by a godawful team, planting your flag in a city and working like crazy until you have turned that team into a champion.

LeBron James didn't want the challenge. He wanted to play with his buddies.

2. "We don't have the pressure of going out and scoring 30 every night or shooting a high percentage."

Whoa. Hold on there. Scoring 30 a night is too much pressure for one of the five most talented players ever?

Find me another all-time NBA great who would utter those words. Jordan would rather do an adidas commercial than say that. Bryant must have laughed as he heard the so-called "King" say that. Larry Bird? The next time he complains about pressure will be the first. Magic was the greatest team player of the last 40 years, but he was also so competitive that he wanted to play Jordan one-on-one in a promotional event -- and this was when Magic had won titles and Jordan had not, so Magic had more to lose.

3. "I know how loyal I am."

The man just dumped his hometown(s) on national television. Cleveland (and, by extension, Akron) happens to be the most tortured sports city in America. To do that, then say "I know how loyal I am" ... wow, wow, wow.

I wish I could sit in on one of LeBron's meetings with his advisers. Does he make them all wear mirrored sunglasses, so that when he looks at them he sees himself?

We really don't ask that much of our sports stars. Try not to get arrested for anything big. Don't curse at the fans. You know, small stuff. We even understand that 95 percent of the time, they will make career decisions based on money -- we might not love it, but we understand it.

But see, the biggest thing that we ask of our sports stars is this: Take the competition as seriously as we do.

When LeBron James loses to Boston in the playoffs, we want him to take the heat, not take the Heat's offer. We want him to spend the summer adding to his game, calling and texting his teammates, plotting to do better next season.

Instead, well ...

4. "It's about joining forces with the other two guys."

He sounds like a nine-year-old playing Star Wars games with his buddies at a sleepover. And again: I do believe this Miami team will win a title. But it won't be as easy as he wants it to be. Miami will have the weakest bench of any contender next season After that, the NBA will have a lockout, and the league could eliminate the mid-level exception, which would be Miami's best tool for adding talent.

So this is a cop-out, but it's not as easy of a cop-out as it appears. And that brings us to ...

5. "This is the greatest challenge for me."

LeBron James just jumped into an elevator and wants us to think he can fly. Sorry, but we know better. We know that he did something Michael, Magic, Bird and Bill Russell never would have done. We know he ditched Cleveland for an All-Star team.

But you know what? In Miami, anything short of a title will be a failure. Nobody outside of Miami will root for this team, and nobody in Miami roots for anybody. They're too busy enjoying the weather.

I thought he would stay in Cleveland, because I thought all he cared about was adoration. I was wrong about Cleveland, but he is wrong about adoration. He thinks he'll get it by winning a title. He has insulated himself from the world, surrounded himself with yes men. He has no idea how much backlash he is about to get.

That's one of the great ironies of this -- James is trying to flee pressure, but he will just face more of it. He is trying to maximize his "brand," but he just damaged it.

The first time I watched LeBron James live, I thought he could be the greatest player ever. The sad truth for us, for him, and for the NBA is that he never really believed it himself.

Read more: http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2010/writers/michael_rosenberg/07/08/lebron.event/#ixzz0tANqknac

07-09-2010, 04:19 PM
Name the Crimes of Lebron James by Henry Abbot

What is James' crime, exactly? I have been hashing out this issue with e-mailers over the last few hours. Most accept that he had the right to choose whatever team he wanted. Most accept that Cleveland was not the best team. Most accept that he played hard for the Cavaliers and -- this year's playoff disappointment notwithstanding -- got better results than could have been expected.

Pretty much it boils down to the fact that he put himself on TV to make this decision, which sends the twin messages that he has an overblown view of his own role in the world, and that he's insensitive to how the whole thing would play in Ohio.

And OK, fair enough. Quibble with his media philosophies if you'd like.

But realize, if you're bitter, you're bitter about the format of his expression. Not the contents of his soul. And without clearing the bar in that last sentence, it's a little extreme to call him nasty names on the internet, isn't it?

Sam Miguel
07-09-2010, 04:43 PM
The only real thing to be said now is: When will this trio win their first NBA championship together?

Dan Gilbert can kiss my fat arse; he helped bring this upon himself the way he let Team Lebron have the run of the place in the Cavaliers organization. He got exactly what he deserved.

07-09-2010, 10:25 PM
By Katie Stoynoff:

It is amazing that nowhere in the letter does Gilbert thank Lebron for the millions of dollars that he made off of him. Few people remember that the Cavs were about to fold when they were lucky enough to draft Lebron. He has saved that team, and Gilbert has profited from that. An owner with class, something Lebron has plenty of, would have said that he was disappointed and then went on to thank Lebron for what he had done for the team and Cleveland. Instead, Gilbert decided to join the pity party and disparage Lebron. Again, this kind of reaction helps me to better understand why Lebron left. Gilbert says that Lebron's true colors were showing last night. I think that comment deserves a real good look in the mirror.

07-09-2010, 11:17 PM
http://realgm.com/src_wiretap_archives/68005/20100709/fans_in_cleveland_burn_jerseys_throw_rocks_at_bill boards/

As expected, fans in Cleveland didn't handle news of LeBron James' departure well on Thursday night.

Fans set LeBron's No. 23 Cavaliers jersey on fire and threw rocks at a 10-story-tall billboard that features James with his head tossed back, arms pointing skyward.

Across the street from Quicken Loans Arena at a sports bar, grown men hid their tear-streaked faces.

"I think it was a slap in the face to this city, who had supported him and been behind him since he was in high school," said Earl Mauldin. "To go on national TV and spit in our face like that is very, very, very wrong."

The overwhelming feeling among fans was that if James was going to leave, he could have done it in private rather than televise the event.

This is clearly the main reason why many people (not only the Cleveland fans) are ridiculing LeBron's decision.

I have no doubt that LeBron had already decided a couple of weeks ago. Maybe he conspired with his draft batch mates as well.


07-10-2010, 02:06 AM
bill simmons article - http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/page2/story?page=simmons/100708


In May, after the Cavs were ousted in the conference semifinals, I wrote that LeBron was facing one of the greatest sports decisions ever: "winning (Chicago), loyalty (Cleveland) or a chance at immortality (New York)."

I never thought he would pick "HELP!"

Mateen Cleaves
07-10-2010, 06:43 AM
Actually I don't get this rant by the owner. This is free agency right! Out of contract players have a chance to choose where they want to go.

Lebron has played 7 years for Cleveland! If not for Lebron Cleveland wouldn't even have tasted an appearance in the NBA finals! It is true that they tried to improve the team but it wasn't working.

That's because the letter wasn't for you. I'm sure that a lot of it reflects Gilbert's personal feelings. But I also think that there's some marketing element as well. It was meant to give voice to what Cleveland fans felt. But more importantly to rally the troops not just this season but in the coming years. The Cavs need to give Cleveland fans a reason to buy tickets without their biggest draw. "Us against the world" and "Let's show that bum!" are not too bad as starting points for the local marketing campaign.

BTW, how true are reports that LBJ has asked BJ (Manalo) for advise on how to deal with the backlash from bitter, former fans? ;D

07-10-2010, 07:17 AM

Thomas re-signing with Bobcats

By Adrian Wojnarowski, Yahoo! Sports

The Charlotte Bobcats have reached agreement with free-agent forward Tyrus Thomas(notes) on a five-year, $40 million contract, a league source told Y! Sports.

Thomas’ agent Brian Elfus had serious talks with the New Jersey Nets, but his client ultimately decided to return to the Bobcats with the $8 million-a-year offer. New Jersey feared Charlotte would’ve tied up the Nets in free agency for the seven-day period in which the Bobcats could match the offer sheet.

New Jersey will turn its attention to trying to sign Miami free-agent forward Udonis Haslem, as well as look at trade possibilities.

Thomas, 23, played well during 25 games with Charlotte last season. He averaged 10 points and six rebounds with the Bobcats, who’ll play him into the starting power forward spot. At times, Thomas flourished under coach Larry Brown, and he was anxious to return and play for him.

Thomas was traded at the February deadline from the Chicago Bulls, where he had been the fourth overall pick in the 2006 draft.

07-10-2010, 07:18 AM

Sources: Bulls, Korver reach deal

By Marc Stein

The Chicago Bulls have reached an agreement to sign sharpshooting free agent Kyle Korver, according to sources close to the situation.

Sources told ESPN.com that Korver, formerly of the Utah Jazz, will sign a three-year deal worth an estimated $15 million.

Korver will become the Bulls' second significant free-agent acquisition, along with former Utah teammate Carlos Boozer, to sign with Chicago after the Bulls' unsuccessful pursuit of LeBron James, Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade.

"Kyle can shoot the heck out of the ball," Boozer, speaking on "The Waddle & Silvy Show" on ESPN 1000 on Thursday, said of his former teammate with the Jazz. "He's 6-7, 6-8 with real size and can shoot the ball. In practice he doesn't miss many shots, and then in games when he's on, he's as good as anybody."

Korver was the NBA's foremost 3-point shooter last season at 53.6 percent, averaging 7.2 points for the Jazz in 52 games.

He fills a huge need for Chicago, which has lacked a floor-stretching complement to Derrick Rose. The 6-7 swingman also arrives with the experience of playing off Boozer's presence in the low post.

07-10-2010, 08:09 AM
I now fully understand the sentiments of those against LeBron's decision.

LeBron not only betrayed the city of Cleveland or the state of Ohio. He betrayed the basketball fans in general.

What's the reason why he chose Miami? He wanted to win titles. Chicago was the best choice because it has all the favorable elements (chance at winning, youth and marketability). It's not like a LeBron-Rose-Boozer-Noah core has no chance in hell of winning it all. His decision clearly reflects his lack of drive to be the "CHOSEN ONE".

Heck, I might even label him as a poor man's Vince Carter.


07-10-2010, 08:31 AM
Actually I don't get this rant by the owner. This is free agency right! Out of contract players have a chance to choose where they want to go.

Lebron has played 7 years for Cleveland! If not for Lebron Cleveland wouldn't even have tasted an appearance in the NBA finals! It is true that they tried to improve the team but it wasn't working.

That's because the letter wasn't for you. I'm sure that a lot of it reflects Gilbert's personal feelings. But I also think that there's some marketing element as well. It was meant to give voice to what Cleveland fans felt.

Whether it was addressed to someone else one would ask where all the professionalism went with this kind of letter? Backlash from fans yes, you get this even with an ordinary trade and not of a Lebron like stature.

Mateen Cleaves
07-10-2010, 08:47 AM
I think the lack or absence of professionalism was deliberate. To also highlight the fact that Lebron and his posse were the ultimate non-professionals.

One also has to consider that these are Cleveland fans. They have been jilted/rejected/betrayed so often in the past -- by Carlos Boozer (reneging on his word and signing with Utah), by Art Modell (taking the Browns to Baltimore), and by Fate (The Fumble, The Drive, Jordan in Chicago, etc.). If Lebron says that he gave Cleveland 7 years of successful basketball, they will come back and say they gave him 11 or more years of total adulation. He wouldn't have been King without his loyal subjects in Ohio. And not even one "thank you" to the people of Ohio? You can bet that the Cavs will continue to tap into those emotions as they gather the pieces and try to rebuild as well as they can.

Lebron had to do what he had to do. This is now the Cavs doing what they have to do to keep the fans in the fold.

07-10-2010, 11:31 AM
I now fully understand the sentiments of those against LeBron's decision.

LeBron not only betrayed the city of Cleveland or the state of Ohio. He betrayed the basketball fans in general.

What's the reason why he chose Miami? He wanted to win titles. Chicago was the best choice because it has all the favorable elements (chance at winning, youth and marketability). It's not like a LeBron-Rose-Boozer-Noah core has no chance in hell of winning it all. His decision clearly reflects his lack of drive to be the "CHOSEN ONE".

Heck, I might even label him as a poor man's Vince Carter.


i just want to present a counter-argument.

basketball fans in general has been brainwashed (most probably by the nba marketing) that the best and sexiest way to legendary status is the michael route. this route is/could be best described as one alpha dog with isolation plays to maximize said dog's talents. but if lebron's transfer to a team allows him to showcase a lot more of his skills like magic's showtime group, wouldn't that be better basketball in the pure sense? this is much like why fans liked the ball movement of the seven seconds or less phoenix suns and the princeton offense of the sacramento kings.

as to the chance of winning for chicago team circa july 7, 2010 compared to miami's, there's not much difference if lebron landed there. both situations will have no reliable outside shooter to create spacing. there will be another good player that replicates what lebron offers to the table (rose vs wade). and questionable inside post presence (boozer vs bosh). so i have a hard time following the argument that chicago will win more than miami as presently constructed.

side comment: this thread might become a discussion of lebron's free agency than about any other signings ;)

07-11-2010, 11:55 PM

For me, Dan Gilbert has the right to say what he feels as the owner of the Cavs. Mali ang ginawang diskarte ni Lebron sa pag-alis niya and this hurt Gilbert. Nakinabang ang Cavs kay Lebron, pero nakinabang rin naman si Lebron sa Cavs dahil lahat naman ay binigay ng organization sa kanya para siya mapaligaya. End result nga lang eh sumobra ang laki ng ego niya.
;D ;D ;D

Sam Miguel
07-12-2010, 09:15 AM
I keep wondering why people are carping on Lebron James. The man went to where he thought his career could best be served. What's wrong with that? Shaquille O'Neal (Orlando to the Lakers) and Kevin Garnett (Minnesotta to Boston) never got this kind of vilification. The guy took less money to go to a team where he had two other All Stars with him, guys who also happen to be really good friends of his. He think that is a winning situation, that will help him finally get his NBA championship.

Does the city of Cleveland OWN James that he has NO right to make his own career decisions? If money was the only issue, James would have chosen Cleveland in a heartbeat, since they could give him some $30 million more than any other team, guaranteed. He chose relatively less money to have a better shot at a championship. And this is wrong? This is bad faith? This is betrayal?

James brought this franchise to the NBA Finals in 2007. He gave them the best record last season. His stellar play, taken on its own, is the ONLY reason the Cavaliers have even made it back to respectability. He has, in other words, done the job for which he was paid given the circumstances. He's now moving to a situation that he thinks is best for him. For this he is being called all sorts of names by his former team owner. Dan Gilbert, get the hell over it, there is little sympathy for major league owners, and you just gave the ordinary fan even more reason to give even less sympathy to you and your ilk.

07-12-2010, 10:23 AM
I for one think there is nothing wrong for Lebron to change uniform. He waited for this day to exercise that "right" to chose his next team. What made his annoucement classless was Lebron announcing his decision in front of a national television (ESPN 1 hour special) without even issuing a notice to Cleveland's office. If any, that is the area where I feel for Dan Gilbert and Cavs fan.

07-12-2010, 11:55 AM
If Lebron feels that's this is the easiest way for him to win a ring, then so be it. But two things:

1. The way he and his reps handled it was terrible. He should stop pretending that he only made up his mind recently. That insults everyone's intelligence. Also, he could at least given the Cavs the courtesy of telling them about his decision beforehand. They deserved that much. As it is, he never even bothered to answer their phone calls throughout the summer. They only learned about it through that one-hour special, which by the way was also ill-conceived and self-serving.

2. He should stop calling himself the King and The Chosen One, because this move is an admission that he cannot carry a team. Stop all the Jordan comparisons as well, because Jordan would never have done something like this. He started out on a very bad Bulls team, never once demanded to be traded and instead helped the Bulls rise to prominence. He never took a shortcut to the top. In that respect, Lebron will never be like Jordan.

On the comment that maybe LeBon just wants to be more like Magic and become more of a playmaker, I get that. But know this as well: like Jordan and even Kobe, Magic also had that alpha dog mentality in him. It may have been Kareem's team early on in his career, but Magic eventually asserted his leadership on the Lakers.

Mateen Cleaves
07-12-2010, 09:32 PM
I keep wondering why people are carping on Lebron James. The man went to where he thought his career could best be served. What's wrong with that? Shaquille O'Neal (Orlando to the Lakers) and Kevin Garnett (Minnesotta to Boston) never got this kind of vilification. The guy took less money to go to a team where he had two other All Stars with him, guys who also happen to be really good friends of his. He think that is a winning situation, that will help him finally get his NBA championship.

Not really. With the sign-and-trade, he can get paid at the Cleveland Cavs rate.

07-13-2010, 07:07 AM

Chandler confirms trade to Raptors

By Marc J. Spears, Yahoo! Sports

Tyson Chandler(notes) confirmed to Yahoo! Sports that he is being traded from the Charlotte Bobcats to the Toronto Raptors as part of a three-team deal that also includes the Phoenix Suns.

The Arizona Republic reported the Suns would receive Hedo Turkoglu(notes) in the trade while sending Leandro Barbosa(notes) to the Raptors. The Toronto Star has reported that Charlotte could also send forward Boris Diaw(notes) to the Raptors as well as Chandler for guard Jose Calderon(notes). Raptors forward Reggie Evans(notes) also could be traded to Charlotte in the deal, which is still being worked out.

In a separate transaction, the Suns acquired forward Josh Childress(notes) in a sign-and-trade deal with the Atlanta Hawks. Childress will get a five-year, $34 million contract.

The trade represents some significant housecleaning for the Raptors, who gave Turkoglu a five-year, $52 million contract a year ago. Turkoglu struggled during his first season in Toronto and was briefly suspended by team management after he missed a game because he was sick only to be reportedly spotted at a nightclub later the same evening. After the season, Turkoglu made clear he would welcome a trade.

Turkoglu has four years and $43 million remaining on his contract. He reportedly will surrender his $5 million trade kicker to go to Phoenix. Calderon has three years and nearly $30 million left on his contract.

Chandler is in the final $12.8 million season of his contract. Diaw has two years and $18 million left while Barbosa has two years and $14.7 million remaining.

07-13-2010, 07:10 AM

Spurs sign top European big man

SAN ANTONIO (AP) ? The San Antonio Spurs didn't shop the blockbuster free-agent market for their big summer addition.

Instead, they finally cashed in on their 2007 draft.

The Spurs signed Spain center Tiago Splitter on Monday, three years after San Antonio picked the heralded 6-foot-11 Brazilian star whose expectations will likely be as high as any Spurs newcomer in recent years.

"We're very fortunate to be adding one of the best players not playing in the NBA," Spurs general manager R.C. Buford said before introducing Splitter.

But Buford also sought to make Splitter's impact realistic.

The 25-year-old was MVP of both the Spanish League regular season and finals while leading Caja Laboral Vitoria to a second championship, averaging 15.4 points and 7.1 rebounds. He has widely been regarded as one of Europe's best big men.

But the 235-pound Splitter still has room to grow physically. And in a franchise built by David Robinson and Tim Duncan, the bar for big men in San Antonio is high as anywhere in the NBA.

"We've been fortunate to have two pretty good bigs through here the last 20 years," Buford said. "I'm hoping that people will let him become his own player as opposed to have the expectations of our previous centers."

The Spurs, though, are counting on Splitter to contribute right away. San Antonio let go one disappointing big man this summer in Ian Mahinmi, the 6-11 center from France who struggled to develop after the Spurs made him a late first-round pick in 2005.

Splitter, the 28th overall pick in 2007, idolized Duncan growing up. He said he wasn't ready to play in the NBA until now.

Splitter ? who wore No. 21 in Europe because of Duncan ? characterized his game as running the floor quickly for a player of his size. He also said he likes to play the pick-and-roll offense run by the Spurs.

"I really decided that I wanted to come here," Splitter said. "I stayed more time in Europe to improve my game a lot. It was the right time at the right moment."

Finally bringing Splitter aboard was an offseason target for the Spurs after being swept by Phoenix in the Western Conference semifinals. San Antonio hasn't drastically changed its roster since, apart from swingman Richard Jefferson opting out of his deal for free agency.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed, but Splitter didn't appear lured by an immediate NBA payday. The most the Spurs could offer Splitter this season was their midlevel exception, around $5.8 million, whereas his Spanish club could have offered him more.

"If I stayed in Spain I could have made more money," Splitter said. "But this is my moment."

07-13-2010, 07:22 AM
Report: Richardson, Magic reach deal

ORLANDO, Fla. -- The Magic agreed to a deal with free agent Quentin Richardson on Monday, a person familiar with the negotiations told The Associated Press.

The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the deal has not been officially announced. Terms of the contract were not immediately known.

The deal adds another potent shooter for Orlando to put around Dwight Howard.

It also means the Magic are likely parting ways with free agent small forward Matt Barnes, who opted out of the last year of his two-year deal with Orlando to become a free agent.

Barnes has said he would like to re-sign with Orlando, but that seems increasingly unlikely. He was looking to capitalize on a multiyear contract after starting the majority of last season. Barnes is not a long-range threat like Richardson -- who shot 39 percent from 3-point range last season for Miami -- but was one of Orlando's best perimeter defenders.

Richardson does, however, give the cash-strapped Magic some flexibility in free agency.

The 6-foot-6 Richardson can play both small forward and shooting guard. The Magic, already over the luxury tax, have until Friday to decide if they want to match the $19 million, three-year offer Chicago made for restricted free agent J.J. Redick.

Orlando general manger Otis Smith said Saturday that the team would like to keep Redick but would take the full seven days to decide. Magic coach Stan Van Gundy, meanwhile, said during summer league last week -- before Redick had an offer -- that the team would likely match any offer for Redick.

Richardson's deal with Orlando was first reported by Yahoo! Sports.

He averaged 8.9 points and 4.9 rebounds per game starting at small forward last season for Miami. In 10 NBA seasons, he has played for the Heat, Los Angeles Clippers, New York Knicks and Phoenix Suns.

Richardson should fit seamlessly into the Magic's 3-point-happy system that surrounds shooters around Howard, their All-Star center. Orlando set an NBA record with 841 made 3-pointers last season.

Toto Battung
07-13-2010, 08:21 AM
Derek Fisher is returning to the Los Angeles Lakers. Kobe Bryant made sure he's back to direct the "The Last Stand" of Phil Jackson.

07-13-2010, 08:37 AM
Finally, Splitter is coming to the NBA! I've been watching Tiago play in the Euroleague for several years now, and was always intrigued to see him jump over to the NBA. At least Tim Duncan has some help now in the post, as the Spurs will try to keep their position in the tough Western Conference.

Tyson Chandler has 1 year remaining in his contract, so he'll be motivated to play well and not get injured. I don't think he'll stay too long up in Canada, so he either gets traded by the trade deadline to a contender or as a salary dump, or else he signs another big contract with a US team in summer 2011. Other guys rumoured to be joining him are Barbosa and Boris Diaw. GM Colangelo loves to bring back his former Phoenix players up north, first with Marion and Banks last year, and now these two being acquired via trade as well.

07-13-2010, 04:52 PM
Raymond Felton, Knicks Agree to 3 Years, $25M

It’s not exactly a bargain deal, but Felton is going to be key for the Knicks when the terms are finalized. From the NY Daily News: “The Knicks reached an agreement in principle Friday with Felton, the free agent who played five seasons with the Charlotte Bobcats, including the last two under former Knicks coach Larry Brown. The deal could be finalized as early as Saturday. Three days ago, Duhon signed a free agent contract with Orlando. Felton’s contract is believed to be a three-year deal worth approximately $25 million, which doesn’t preclude the Knicks from pursuing Chris Paul or Tony Parker next summer. The Knicks were also considering Luke Ridnour, but felt that Felton was the better player to go along with Amar’e Stoudemire and Danilo Gallinari.”

07-13-2010, 10:08 PM
Finally, Splitter is coming to the NBA! I've been watching Tiago play in the Euroleague for several years now, and was always intrigued to see him jump over to the NBA. At least Tim Duncan has some help now in the post, as the Spurs will try to keep their position in the tough Western Conference.

Riley is currently the frontrunner for executive of the year with Lebron and Bosh signing but Spurs GM is doing things that are inconceivable so far.
1. Richard Jefferson opted out of his final year worth 15 million. :o
2. Drafted James Anderson with 20th pick. No way James Anderson could have drop down that low.
3. Euroleague MVP (Splitter) for 10.3 million for three years.

07-14-2010, 06:59 AM
Bobcats send Chandler to Dallas in 5-player deal

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) -- Tyson Chandler has been traded after all, just not to the team he thought a day earlier.

After Charlotte's potential deal with Toronto fell through, the Bobcats sent Chandler and fellow center Alexis Ajinca to the Dallas Mavericks on Tuesday for center Erick Dampier, forward Eduardo Najera, shooting guard Matt Carroll and cash considerations.

The Bobcats had been closing in on a deal that would've sent Chandler and Boris Diaw to Toronto for Jose Calderon and Reggie Evans. Chandler was told he was being sent to the Raptors by his agent, but the deal dissolved.

The new trade gives the Bobcats a center in Dampier, but leaves them still searching for a point guard to replace departed free agent Raymond Felton.

07-14-2010, 07:02 AM
Report: Wolves to trade Jefferson to Jazz

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) -- The Minnesota Timberwolves have agreed to send power forward Al Jefferson to the Utah Jazz for two future first-round draft picks and a salary-cap trade exception, a person with knowledge of the deal told The Associated Press on Tuesday.

The person spoke on the condition of anonymity because the deal had not yet been officially announced.

Jefferson averaged 17.1 points and 9.3 rebounds last season for the Timberwolves in his first year back from a major knee injury in February 2009. He will help fill a void in Utah created when Carlos Boozer went to Chicago.

Jefferson came to the Timberwolves in 2007 as the main cog in the blockbuster deal that sent Kevin Garnett to Boston. He averaged 23.1 points and 11 rebounds in the 50 games before he was injured in 2009.

Utah gained the traded player exception, which provides salary cap relief, in the sign-and-trade deal that sent Boozer to Chicago. Utah GM Kevin O'Connor declined to comment when reached by phone on Tuesday.

The deal marks a complete and final break from the Kevin McHale-Kevin Garnett era in Minnesota. Garnett is the lone star the Timberwolves have ever had, spending 12 years in the Twin Cities and leading the Wolves to the Western Conference finals in 2004.

But as the years wore on, McHale, the former coach and GM, decided to cut ties with Garnett in 2007 and rebuild. He sent KG to Boston for Jefferson, Sebastian Telfair, Ryan Gomes, Gerald Green, Theo Ratliff and two draft picks in a blockbuster deal that helped the Celtics helped form the bedrock of a team that has reached the NBA finals in two of the last three years.

Jefferson was the last remaining player from that deal. McHale fell in love with Jefferson's footwork and wide array of low-post moves, the kind of old-school, back-to-the-basket game that worked so well for McHale in his Boston days.

Things looked promising at the outset, with Jefferson signing a five-year, $65 million contract and averaging 21.0 points and 11.1 rebounds in his first season in Minnesota. He was pushing for the All-Star team in his second season, dominating offensively when he tore ligaments in his right knee in the final game before the break in New Orleans.

It's been a slow, steady climb back for Jefferson, one that will have to continue in Utah.

The Jazz needed to make a move after losing Boozer (five years, $75 million) and Kyle Korver (three years, $15 million) to the Bulls, two defections that will certainly make things more challenging for point guard Deron Williams.

Jefferson, who played center for most of last season with the Timberwolves, will fortify the front line and give Williams a legitimate and reliable threat on the low block to take some of the defensive pressure off of him on the perimeter.

Utah orchestrated a sign-and-trade with the Bulls for Boozer so they could get some $14 million in a trade exception for a deal just like the one they have agreed to with Minnesota. Jefferson has three years and $42 million left on his contract.

The Jazz will send Minnesota the conditional first-round pick it got from Memphis in the Ronnie Brewer trade plus a future first-rounder.

The Timberwolves have been shopping Jefferson for a few weeks now, holding out for the right deal until bigger name power forwards like Boozer, Amare Stoudemire, Chris Bosh and David Lee signed contracts. For all of his skill on offense, Jefferson has been a liability on defense for one of the worst defensive teams in the league.

The Wolves signed center Darko Milicic, agreed to terms with center Nikola Pekovic and traded for Michael Beasley to reshape a small front line into a bigger, and sleeker, unit that the team hopes will be able to get out and run the break much more effectively for coach Kurt Rambis.

Timberwolves president David Kahn was up front with Jefferson from the beginning, telling him that they were considering trading him but also saying they would not do so unless they got an offer they liked.

"I told him I admired him for his professionalism,'' Kahn said during a conference call on Monday to discuss the Beasley trade. "I hope it isn't awkward. I told him we would do what's best for him and best for us.''

07-14-2010, 07:02 AM
Report: Ilgauskas to sign with Miami Heat

MIAMI (AP) -- Zydrunas Ilgauskas is following LeBron James to the Miami Heat.

The veteran center, who started playing for Cleveland in 1997 and has never suited up for another NBA team, expects to sign a two-year contract for $2.8 million with the Heat later this week, agent Herb Rudoy said Tuesday. The two-year deal would come with a player option for the second season, Rudoy said.

``We've agreed to agree,'' Rudoy said.

The Heat had no immediate comment. They had talks about acquiring Ilgauskas when he was available this past season after being dealt in a three-team trade to Washington. The Wizards subsequently bought out his contract and made him a free agent.

Ilgauskas is the Cavs' career leader in games played, blocked shots and rebounds. The 7-foot-3 Lithuanian was drafted by the club in 1996 and overcame serious foot injuries that nearly ended his career.

He's just the latest name to join what shapes up as a serious title contender in Miami, joining not only James but Dwyane Wade, Chris Bosh, Udonis Haslem and Mike Miller, who agreed to a deal late last week that remains unsigned.

"I don't think if LeBron weren't there, this would be happening." Rudoy said. "His best chance to win a championship would be in Miami,''

Ilgauskas told Cavs owner Dan Gilbert and general manager Chris Grant the news on Tuesday. James played a role in luring Ilgauskas to Miami, and other teams were interested as well.

Ilgauskas was immensely popular in Cleveland, and expects to keep a home in the city.

``It's hard,'' Rudoy said. ``It's been 14 years. It was very hard for him. I know that. When he called Chris Grant and Dan Gilbert today, it was definitely a hard decision at this stage of his career. But he wants to win a championship. That's how he made this decision.''

Playing as a reserve for the first time, Ilgauskas averaged 7.4 points and 5.4 rebounds last season. For his career, Ilgauskas has averaged 13.8 points and 7.7 rebounds, plus has played in two All-Star

07-14-2010, 07:03 AM
Nets acquire Morrow from Warriors through sign and trade

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) -- The New Jersey Nets have acquired guard Anthony Morrow in a sign and trade deal with the Golden State Warriors.

The Nets say the deal was completed on Tuesday, just a day after they handed Morrow an offer sheet on a three-year, $12 million contract.

The Warriors, who were not expected to match the offer, will get the Nets' second-round draft pick in 2011. The pick is protected if it falls between 31 to 55.

Morrow averaged 13.0 points last season, shooting 46 percent from 3-point range.

07-14-2010, 10:11 AM

SI just made Lebron look like a second banana to Wade. Scottie Pippen role comparison is an insult to Pippen. Pippen stood by Chicago franchise through rough times until it became successful.

07-14-2010, 10:47 AM
^ michael and scottie grabbed the security of 8 (?) year contracts with no opt outs.

those 3 in the picture took 3 year deals after their 4 year rookie deals to get the ability to freely go where they want. they didn't do the standard things for star athletes.

07-14-2010, 03:11 PM
^ michael and scottie grabbed the security of 8 (?) year contracts with no opt outs.

Actually Scottie bitched about his salary later on...:D No wonder Jerry Krause and Jerrry Reinsdorf was very much disliked...

One other "unheard of before" contract before which was torn up later on: Magic Johnson's 25-year pact which would have paid him $1 Million a year.

07-14-2010, 07:05 PM
Bobcats send Chandler to Dallas in 5-player deal

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) -- Tyson Chandler has been traded after all, just not to the team he thought a day earlier.

After Charlotte's potential deal with Toronto fell through, the Bobcats sent Chandler and fellow center Alexis Ajinca to the Dallas Mavericks on Tuesday for center Erick Dampier, forward Eduardo Najera, shooting guard Matt Carroll and cash considerations.

The Bobcats had been closing in on a deal that would've sent Chandler and Boris Diaw to Toronto for Jose Calderon and Reggie Evans. Chandler was told he was being sent to the Raptors by his agent, but the deal dissolved.

The new trade gives the Bobcats a center in Dampier, but leaves them still searching for a point guard to replace departed free agent Raymond Felton.

So the trade to Toronto doesn't happen, and Chandler ends up in Dallas instead. If Chandler stays healthy and gives Dallas rebounding and stability at the center spot, I'm sure Mark Cuban will be eager to give him a new contract next year to stay longer with the Mavericks.

07-15-2010, 06:49 AM
So the trade to Toronto doesn't happen, and Chandler ends up in Dallas instead. If Chandler stays healthy and gives Dallas rebounding and stability at the center spot, I'm sure Mark Cuban will be eager to give him a new contract next year to stay longer with the Mavericks.

Actually, Dallas was also making a push in signing New York's Al Harrington which could play the SF/PF position but Al chose the Nuggets instead.

07-15-2010, 06:49 AM
Free agent Harrington heading to Nuggets

DENVER (AP) -- The Denver Nuggets got their big man. Now, will they keep their star?

Free agent power forward Al Harrington says he's headed to the Nuggets, who are in dire need of frontcourt help with Kenyon Martin, Chris Andersen and Nene coming off leg injuries.

Now it appears the ball is in All-Star Carmelo Anthony's frontcourt.

Anthony, who is on his honeymoon after marrying television personality LaLa Vazquez in New York over the weekend, is mulling a three-year $65 million contract extension that would keep him in Denver through 2015.

Anthony has said he wanted to see the team bolster its frontcourt, a sentiment shared by the front office, which failed to get back into the draft last month to draft a big man and then was unsuccessful in its pursuits of free agents Jermaine O'Neal, who went to Boston, and Udonis Haslem, who stayed in Miami.

If Anthony rejects the Nuggets' extension, he would be the headliner of the 2011 free agent class a year after LeBron James and Chris Bosh took their talents to South Beach to play with Dwyane Wade and the Heat.

At the NBA finals last month, Anthony said he would like to see the Nuggets add some talent to the roster following their first-round flop in the playoffs a year after reaching the Western Conference finals.

Here comes Harrington, a 6-foot-9 forward who averaged 17.7 points and 5.6 rebounds last season. One of his best games was in Denver on Nov. 27, when he scored 41 but Anthony had 50 in the Nuggets' 128-125 win.

ESPN first reported Harrington had chosen Denver over Dallas. The former New York Knicks backup later tweeted: "I'm taking my Talents to the MILE HIGH.'' The Nuggets didn't return messages from The AP.

The Mavericks made a strong push for Harrington after acquiring Tyson Chandler, but they couldn't commit the minutes or money that the Nuggets could.

Harrington would make about $5.8 million next year with the midlevel exception and more than $33 million over the next five years. With Martin and Andersen on the mend from offseason knee surgeries, Harrington will likely start the season at power forward with Nene at center.

Andersen also had surgery Wednesday to repair a torn ligament in his left ring finger. He broke the finger March 13 at Memphis but continued to play with the injury.

07-15-2010, 06:51 AM
Report: Wolves, Ridnour agree to four-year deal

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) -- With so many baby-faced players on a roster that is in the middle of a massive overhaul, team president David Kahn put a priority on adding some experience to help the young Minnesota Timberwolves grow together.

The first veteran addition didn't come cheap.

The Timberwolves agreed to a four-year, $16 million deal with free agent point guard Luke Ridnour, a person with knowledge of the negotiations told The Associated Press on Wednesday. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the deal has not been officially announced.

Ridnour averaged 10.4 points and 4.0 assists per game as the backup to Brandon Jennings in Milwaukee last season. The 29-year-old is entering his eighth season in the NBA and will be playing for his third team after starting his career in Seattle and moving to Milwaukee in 2008.

The Wolves were able to swing the deal after shipping Al Jefferson to Utah on Tuesday to create more salary cap room. The move, which also brought two conditional first-round draft picks, essentially amounted to a salary dump of arguably the team's two best players, so Kahn is under pressure to make the most of the ample financial flexibility created by the trade.

His first move with all that extra money was to add Ridnour, yet another point guard to a team that already has second-year pro Jonny Flynn and Ramon Sessions on the roster and hopes to add Ricky Rubio from Spain next season.

The deal likely means that Sessions, who signed a contract nearly identical to Ridnour's last summer, will be traded.

Sessions' agent told The Associated Press on Wednesday that he has heard about discussions with several teams, but a deal has yet to be completed. Sessions averaged 8.2 points and 3.1 assists last year for the 15-win Wolves as the backup to Flynn.

Before Ridnour was brought into the mix, 25-year-old Ryan Hollins was the oldest player on the Timberwolves, who added 21-year-old Michael Beasley in a trade with Miami on Tuesday. Beasley has dealt with several issues off the court, but Kahn said he thinks the former No. 2 overall pick is maturing.

"I think experience really matters, of course, I would never discount that,'' Kahn said Tuesday night after trading Jefferson. "I think that we have though in the young kids we have on the team, everybody I think is a good person.

"And we talked last night about some of Michael's issues that he had a year ago, but all indications are that Michael is growing. I'm not saying grown, but growing. I'd love to have a couple veterans on the team, there's no question about it.''

07-15-2010, 08:17 AM

Rockets to match Cavs’ offer sheet to Lowry

By TOM WITHERS, AP Sports Writer

CLEVELAND (AP)—The Cavaliers have been rejected again.

The team’s attempt to sign free agent Kyle Lowry(notes) was rebuffed Wednesday when the Houston Rockets matched Cleveland’s offer sheet to the veteran point guard. Cleveland’s package was a three-year, $24 million deal with a fourth option year, but Rockets general manager Daryl Morey wasted no time in making a counteroffer.

The 6-foot Lowry averaged 9.1 points, 4.5 assists and 3.6 rebounds per game last season backing up Aaron Brooks(notes).

“He’s a big part of our team,” Morey said in a phone interview. “He did a great job off the bench and we also like he and Aaron playing together. That’s very big for us to get him back.”

Lowry’s agent, Andy Miller, did not return multiple messages seeking comment. The Rockets had seven days to match Cleveland’s offer, but Morey saw no reason to wait.

“We like to let the player know as soon as possible, just so he doesn’t start thinking about playing for another team,” Morey said.

Scrambling to bolster their roster since MVP LeBron James(notes) announced he was leaving last week, the Cavs have come up short so far this summer. On Tuesday, 14-year veteran Zydrunas Ilgauskas(notes) said he will follow James and sign with the Miami Heat.

James’ decision last week not to re-sign with Cleveland and bolt after seven seasons has put the Cavs in a bind. Most of the other top free agents have signed elsewhere, leaving the team with little on the market to choose from. Cleveland still has a $14 million trade exception to use and the club has had talks with several teams about deals, but nothing is imminent.

Lowry and starting forward Luis Scola(notes) were Houston’s restricted free agents, and Morey said re-signing Scola is the next priority.

“Hopefully, that’s not too far off,” Morey said. “We’re going to bring him back, that’s been the plan all along.”

AP Sports Writer Chris Duncan in Houston contributed to this report.

07-15-2010, 08:18 AM

Bobcats reach deal with PG Shaun Livingston

By MIKE CRANSTON, AP Sports Writer

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP)—Shaun Livingston(notes) suffered what was widely considered a career-ending knee injury playing against Charlotte in 2007.

Just over three years later, he’s joining the Bobcats to continue his comeback and help plug their hole at point guard.

“Yes,” agent Henry Thomas said, “how ironic.”

Thomas confirmed on Wednesday his client was headed to Charlotte but didn’t provide financial figures. Yahoo! Sports reported it was a two-year deal worth $7 million.

“A good get,” Bobcats coach Larry Brown said in a brief phone interview.

The 6-foot-7 Livingston is a big, versatile point guard that would seem to fit into Brown’s system if his left knee is fully recovered. And Charlotte needs the help after it made no attempt to re-sign last year’s starter, Raymond Felton(notes), because of salary-cap woes.

When Felton signed with New York this week, D.J. Augustin(notes) was the only point guard left on the roster.

It remains unclear if the Bobcats will seek another playmaker. Brown was tightlipped, saying only the team has “a lot of work to do” after Tuesday’s trade that sent Tyson Chandler(notes) and Alexis Ajinca(notes) to Dallas.

The Bobcats got Erick Dampier(notes) from the Mavericks, whose $13 million non-guaranteed contract could be used as a chip in a future deal.

The 24-year-old Livingston’s career seemed over when he tore three ligaments and dislocated his kneecap in a game against Charlotte on Feb. 26, 2007 when he was with the Los Angeles Clippers. Livingston, who skipped college and was the No. 4 pick in the 2004 draft, missed an entire season and played in just 12 games with Oklahoma City and Miami when he returned in 2008-09.

Livingston played in 36 games last season with the Thunder and Wizards. He started 18 games to finish last season with Washington and averaged 9.2 points and 4.5 assists, which created some interest around the league.

Livingston’s size could contrast well with the 6-foot Augustin, who struggled some last season.

07-16-2010, 11:35 AM

Rockets agree to terms with F Scola

By CHRIS DUNCAN, AP Sports Writer

HOUSTON (AP)—A person with knowledge of the deal says the Houston Rockets have agreed to terms with restricted free agent Luis Scola(notes) of Argentina.

The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the deal was not official and the team had not announced it.

Scola’s agent, George Bass, did not immediately return a phone message. The Houston Chronicle and KRIV-TV reported that Scola agreed to a five-year deal worth $47 million.

Re-signing Scola was Houston’s top priority after the team matched Cleveland’s offer sheet to retain point guard Kyle Lowry(notes) on Wednesday. Scola started all 82 games for the Rockets last season and averaged 16.2 points and 8.6 rebounds per game.

Rockets general manager Daryl Morey said after last season that owner Leslie Alexander would match any offers to keep Lowry and Scola.

The Rockets have been quiet on the free-agent front since Morey met with Chris Bosh(notes) moments after free agency began on July 1. Bosh joined LeBron James(notes) and Dwyane Wade(notes) in Miami, while Morey turned his focus to new deals for Lowry and Scola.

The Rockets are expecting All-Star center Yao Ming(notes) to return healthy from foot surgery this season. Morey has said that Houston’s biggest free-agent move came in February, when the team dealt Tracy McGrady’s(notes) massive contract to New York and signed shooting guard Kevin Martin(notes). Houston also picked up promising forward Jordan Hill(notes) in the deal.

Scola has been one of Houston’s most consistent players since the Rockets acquired his draft rights from San Antonio before the 2007-08 season. He’s started every game over the past two years and averaged 13.1 points and 7.9 rebounds in three seasons with Houston.

07-17-2010, 07:59 AM
Bulls add third ex-Jazz player, sign Brewer
By David Aldridge, TNT analyst

NBA sources confirmed on Friday a Bulls.com report that the team has agreed to terms with free agent guard Ronnie Brewer on a three-year, $12.5 million deal.

Chicago moved quickly to secure Brewer, who was being pursued by several teams, after the Orlando Magic matched Chicago's three-year, $20 million offer sheet on guard J.J. Redick earlier Friday.

Brewer will start at shooting guard for the Bulls, who made their third acquisition of a former Jazz player in two weeks. Chicago signed power forward Carlos Boozer to a five-year, $80 million deal, and signed reserve guard Kyle Korver for three years and $15 million.

Brewer only adds to the outstanding offseason haul for Chicago, which hoped to be a player for LeBron James, Chicago native Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh. For a while, it looked like the Bulls had a chance to get Wade and Bosh, but when Wade opted to remain in Miami, and convinced James and Bosh to join him, the Bulls had to go to Plan B.

Chicago now sports a starting lineup of emerging star point guard Derrick Rose, Brewer, small forward Luol Deng, Boozer and center Joakim Noah, with Korver and second-year forward Taj Gibson leading the reserves.

Brewer, a career 52 percent shooter, started last season in Utah, where he quickly became a coach and player favorite, but was traded to Memphis at the trade deadline for a future first-round pick. The club said at the time that the move was made to free up playing time for other guards, but many believed Utah did it to save money. Whatever the motivation, Brewer's departure angered All-Star guard Deron Williams, who intimated that the team would have to improve its roster to keep him when his three-year contract extension expired.

The opportunity to start was a key factor in Brewer's picking Chicago over other teams, including the Celtics.

07-18-2010, 08:43 AM

Rockets agree to 3-year deal with C Miller

By CHRIS DUNCAN, AP Sports Writer

HOUSTON (AP)—Free agent center Brad Miller(notes) has agreed to a three-year, $15 million contract with the Houston Rockets.

The 7-foot Miller averaged 8.8 points and 4.9 rebounds for Chicago last season. Miller played in Sacramento from 2003-09, including three seasons playing for current Houston coach Rick Adelman.

Agent Mark Bartelstein said in a phone interview on Saturday that reuniting with Adelman was a major factor in Miller’s decision.

“Coach Adelman was a huge part of it,” Bartelstein said. “He had a great time playing for him, and he thinks he’s a great, great coach.”

The 34-year-old Miller will back up All-Star center Yao Ming(notes), who’s expected to return healthy next season after sitting out a year to recover from foot surgery.

The Rockets initially pursued Chris Bosh(notes) when free agency opened on July 1, but Bosh chose to join LeBron James(notes) and Dwyane Wade(notes) in Miami. Houston agreed to terms this week with restricted free agents Kyle Lowry(notes) and Luis Scola(notes).

Miller will enter his 13th NBA season. His best year came in 2003-04, his first with the Kings under Adelman, when he averaged 14.1 points, 10.3 rebounds and 4.3 assists per game. He averaged a career-high 15.6 points in 2004-05.

The Rockets were undersized last season and missed the playoffs with a 42-40 record. Yao is coming off reconstructive surgery on his left foot, and the team has said his minutes will be carefully monitored next season. Miller played in all 82 regular-season games for the Bulls last season, averaging 24 minutes per game.

Bartelstein said Miller was courted by several teams, but saw championship potential in Houston.

“The Rockets have a chance to be really good next year,” Bartelstein said. “With Yao being back, they’ve also got a lot of really good pieces. They could really be a championship contender.”

07-20-2010, 06:50 AM

Blazers name Thunder assistant Cho new GM

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) -- The Portland Trail Blazers have appointed Oklahoma City assistant GM Rich Cho as the team's new general manager.

Cho started out as an intern with the Seattle SuperSonics before moving up to assistant general manager. He stayed with the franchise when it moved to Oklahoma.

The club fired former GM Kevin Pritchard on the day of the June draft.

Terms of the contract with Cho have not been disclosed. The Blazers will hold a news conference on Monday to discuss the appointment.

07-20-2010, 09:45 AM

Report: Suns tab Babby to replace Kerr

Associated Press

PHOENIX -- The Phoenix Suns have hired agent Lon Babby to head the team's basketball operations, a person with knowledge of the situation said Monday.

The person, who asked not to be identified because the official announcement has not been made, told The Associated Press that Babby will be introduced at a news conference at US Airways Center on Tuesday.

Until his move to the front office, Babby represented the Suns' newly acquired Hedo Turkoglu and is the former agent of Phoenix's other recent addition, Josh Childress.

Babby emerged in recent days as the leading candidate in Suns owner Robert Sarver's search for a replacement for general manager Steve Kerr, who stepped down at the end of June and has returned to his previous role of NBA analyst for TNT.

Babby, one of the most respected agents in the business, also represented the Suns' Grant Hill, San Antonio's Tim Duncan and Boston's Ray Allen. He has represented baseball players and served first as club counsel, then as general counsel for the Baltimore Orioles from 1974 to 1989. He also has represented the NFL's Washington Redskins.

A Washington-based attorney, Babby graduated from the Yale law school and is a member of the board of trustees of the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.

Despite the departure of Kerr and his top lieutenant, Dave Griffin, Phoenix made three important personnel moves after All-Star Amare Stoudemire turned down the Suns' final offer and signed with the New York Knicks.

First, Phoenix signed free agent forward Hakim Warrick. After Stoudemire's departure was worked out to be a sign-and-trade agreement, Phoenix acquired the rights to Childress from Atlanta in a sign-and-trade deal, the Hawks getting a 2012 second-round draft pick. The Hawks had the rights to Childress, who had played for a team in Greece the past two years.

Finally, the Suns acquired Turkoglu from Toronto for Leandro Barbosa and Dwayne Jones.

Kerr, the Suns' general manager for three seasons, decided to leave when his contract expired even though he was the architect of a surprising team that had the third-best record in the Western Conference and made it to the conference finals before losing to the eventual NBA champion Los Angeles Lakers.

Despite several reports that he was unhappy with a new contract offer from Sarver, Kerr insisted he was leaving for personal reasons, mainly to spend more time with his family at their home in San Diego.

07-21-2010, 11:40 PM

Hornets hiring Dell Demps as general manager

By BRETT MARTEL, AP Sports Writer

NEW ORLEANS (AP)—A person familiar with the hiring says Dell Demps has agreed to become the New Orleans Hornets’ next general manager.

The person, who spoke to The Associated Press late Tuesday night on condition of anonymity because the hiring had not been formally announced, says the move is expected to become official on Wednesday.

Demps has been in the San Antonio Spurs’ front office the past five years, most recently as vice president of basketball operations under general manager R.C Buford.

Demps also played parts of three seasons in the NBA, including 1995-96 with San Antonio when new Hornets coach Monty Williams also was with the Spurs.

The 40-year-old Demps will replace Jeff Bower, who stepped down last week.

07-22-2010, 08:40 AM

Jefferson back with Spurs after opting out of deal

By PAUL J. WEBER, Associated Press Writer

SAN ANTONIO (AP)—Richard Jefferson(notes) was a way overpriced $14 million swingman in San Antonio last season.

His new deal will likely give the Spurs more for their money.

The Spurs re-signed Jefferson to a multiyear deal Wednesday, nearly a month after the nine-year veteran opted out of a guaranteed $15.2 million next season. Terms of his new deal weren’t disclosed, but Jefferson had been willing to give up the final year of his bloated deal for longer-term security.

“To him, being able to secure his future under the current set of rules that we’re living under, eliminates some uncertainty,” Spurs general manager R.C. Buford said.

Jefferson did not meet with reporters. His agent, Todd Eley, did not immediately return messages Wednesday.

Although his new salary wasn’t immediately known, the Spurs will be paying less for the 30-year-old Jefferson, who was San Antonio’s fifth-leading scorer last season while earning a salary second only to Tim Duncan(notes).

Jefferson averaged 12.3 points last season—his lowest since his rookie year—while struggling to adapt to a new system. A career starter, Jefferson came off the bench at one point while the Spurs tried figuring out how to best use their prized new addition.

But the Spurs stuck by him, even after the season ended without Jefferson making the big splash that many expected.

“He’s played well with his last contract. He played more efficiently than his numbers might have shown,” Buford said. “I think the option of coming into a new team with three established players, some playing injured during the season, was a difficult time for everybody.”

Jefferson was also no doubt motivated to sign a new deal before the NBA’s collective bargaining agreement expires next summer, which many expect could result in a lockout.

Just before the NBA’s blockbuster free agency period began July 1, Jefferson walked away from the final year of a 6-year, $78 million deal he signed with New Jersey in 2005. Back then, Jefferson was among the NBA’s best young scorers and was coming off averaging 22.2 points in his fourth year in the league.

The Nets shipped their leading scorer to Milwaukee in 2008. Jefferson then played just one year before the Bucks, eager to gut their roster and rebuild, traded Jefferson to the Spurs in a lopsided swap for three aging bench players.

By getting Jefferson, the Spurs were using the money they might have otherwise spent this summer. Coach Gregg Popovich said then that with the uncertainty of free agency, they couldn’t pass up getting a player of Jefferson’s caliber.

Jefferson’s return means the Spurs will largely remain the same team that looked like a dangerous sleeper in last year’s playoffs before being swept by Phoenix in the West semifinals.

Their biggest addition was Brazilian center Tiago Splitter(notes), San Antonio’s heralded 2007 draft pick who was MVP of the Spanish League last season. The Spurs also picked up Oklahoma State swingman James Anderson(notes) in the draft last month.

07-23-2010, 07:43 AM

Presti signs extension with Thunder

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP)—Sam Presti has agreed to a multiyear contract extension to remain the general manager of the Oklahoma City Thunder.

Team chairman Clay Bennett announced the deal Thursday but did not reveal terms.

Presti finished second in the voting for the NBA’s executive of the year award last season after the Thunder had a league-best 27-win improvement. The team made the playoffs for the first time since the franchise relocated from Seattle.

After taking over as GM in June 2007, Presti traded veterans Ray Allen(notes) and Rashard Lewis(notes) and started building one of the league’s best young teams. He recently signed NBA scoring champion Kevin Durant(notes) to a five-year, $85 million contract extension.

The new contract comes three days after Presti’s assistant, Rich Cho, was hired as Portland’s new GM.

07-25-2010, 10:07 PM
'Di naman siguro off-topic to. ;D



07-27-2010, 10:45 AM

Raptors officially sign F Linas Kleiza

TORONTO (AP)—Toronto has signed free agent Linas Kleiza(notes) to a multiyear contract.

The Raptors acquired the rights to Kleiza nine days ago when the Denver Nuggets opted not to match Toronto’s offer sheet.

Kleiza played with Greek club Olympiakos last year after four seasons in Denver. The 6-foot-8 forward from Lithuania—who attended high school in Maryland—averaged 8.3 points with the Nuggets.

The Raptors, who lost free agent Chris Bosh(notes) to the Miami Heat earlier this month. Toronto also traded Hedo Turkoglu(notes) to Phoenix and re-signed free-agent forward Amir Johnson(notes), among other moves.

07-27-2010, 10:47 AM

T’wolves trade Sessions to Cavs

By Marc J. Spears, Yahoo! Sports

The Cleveland Cavaliers have traded Delonte West(notes) and Sebastian Telfair(notes) to the Minnesota Timberwolves for Ramon Sessions(notes) and Ryan Hollins(notes).

The Timberwolves will waive West, who has only $500,000 of his $4.7 million salary guaranteed next season. The Cavs also will get a second-round pick in the trade.

Telfair previously played for the Timberwolves. The Timberwolves signed Sessions to a four-year, $16 million contract a year ago, and the Cavs can use him at shooting guard. The Cavs lost center Zydrunas Ilgauskas(notes) in free agency and aren’t expected to re-sign Shaquille O’Neal(notes), so Hollins can help their frontline.

Jonny Flynn, the T’wolves’ starting point guard last season, needs surgery to repair a hip injury and is expected to be out at least three months, league sources said. Minnesota recently signed veteran point guard Luke Ridnour and could use Telfair to back him up while Ridnour recovers.

This is the Cavs’ first significant transaction since losing LeBron James(notes) to the Miami Heat in free agency.

07-28-2010, 08:19 AM

Flynn has hip surgery in Colorado

MINNEAPOLIS (AP)—Minnesota Timberwolves point guard Jonny Flynn(notes) has undergone surgery on his left hip.

Flynn first was injured in the second-to-last game of last season. He missed the final game of the season and aggravated the injury while working out with the team before summer league play.

The team says he underwent surgery in Colorado on Tuesday, but did not have a specific timetable for his return to the court.

The Timberwolves signed veteran Luke Ridnour(notes) last week to a four-year deal. They traded Flynn’s backup, Ramon Sessions(notes), to Cleveland on Monday along with Ryan Hollins(notes) for point guards Delonte West(notes) and Sebastian Telfair(notes).

The team plans to waive West, but Telfair may now have a spot for the immediate future while Flynn recovers from the surgery.

07-28-2010, 08:20 AM

Blazers add Bickerstaff, others to coaching staff

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP)—Longtime coaching veteran Bernie Bickerstaff has been named an assistant on Trail Blazers coach Nate McMillan’s staff.

McMillan also named Bob Ociepka and former Blazer Buck Williams as assistants.

Bickerstaff’s coaching career started in 1973 and has included stints as a head coach in Seattle, Denver, Washington and Charlotte. He has spent the past two seasons as an assistant with the Chicago Bulls.

He has also served as general manager of the Nuggets and the Bobcats.

Ociepka has also been an assistant with the Bulls for the past two seasons. He has nearly 20 years’ experience as an assistant in the league.

Williams, a three-time All-Star, played for the Blazers from 1989-96 during an NBA career that spanned 17 seasons.

08-05-2010, 07:34 AM

Pistons sign Ben Wallace to 2-year contract

AUBURN HILLS, Mich. (AP)—The Detroit Pistons have re-signed center Ben Wallace(notes) to a two-year contract worth $1.9 million per season.

The team announced the signing Wednesday.

The 35-year-old Wallace was one of Detroit’s best players last season as it endured a miserable, injury-plagued year and didn’t make the playoffs for the first time since 2001. He averaged 5.5 points, a team-high 8.7 rebounds and team-best 1.2 blocks last season.

Wallace helped the Pistons win the 2004 NBA title during a five-year stretch in which he won the Defensive Player of the Year award four times.

08-05-2010, 04:35 PM
Shaquille O'Neal a Celtic?
By Kelly Dwyer

So this is where Shaquille O'Neal(notes) comes to hide.
Actually, he's not hiding at all. He's not flying low to the ground and he's not slumming. Short of zooming back to Los Angeles (hard to do on a burned bridge) or Miami (ditto), he's signed with the most storied franchise this league has. One of the more popular, one of the most prominent and one of two that you last saw playing official hoops a month and a half ago. The Celtics.
Shaq in Boston, sportin' the green. Chasing that ring, we'd assume. Chasing down prominence, again. From Kobe to Wade to LeBron. Now in with a series of like-minded fogies. Boston? I suppose it makes sense.
Kendrick Perkins(notes), Boston's dutiful defensive-minded pivot man, will be out until at least January. The team signed Jermaine O'Neal(notes), but (hopefully) with the knowledge that his 2009-10 rebirth appeared to slide closer toward the spires of flukedom than an actual recharge. Rasheed Wallace(notes) is trade bait, Shelden Williams(notes) is no more. The C's need a center.
And it's almost sad that they're turning to Shaq.
Because O'Neal, at this point, is probably better off working as an entertainer of sorts than someone who should be hedging on Mike Conley(notes) Jr. on some random Wednesday in January.
You saw those games last year. Shaq didn't really look that bad. He looked like ... Shaq. Big guy, one move, two pivots, two hands. To the naked eye, O'Neal looked like a late-30s version of himself. He looked like what you would expect.
It's just that all these raw stats tell you that the Cavs were so, so much better with O'Neal on the pine. That when things weren't Shaq-centric, Cleveland tended to dominate. The easy answer to that? Don't pass Shaq the ball. Don't make him Shaq-centric. To these eyes, Cleveland didn't. And yet, the team's offense stunk with him out there. Tom Haberstroh nailed the best part of it last week:
LeBron with Shaq last year: Cavs +3.4 pts per possession. LeBron without Shaq? +15.7. That experiment was fun wasn't it?
That's per 100 possessions, and with the average game working around 93 or 94 possessions, nearly 16 points is a pretty big deal. That's not an insignificant number. I watched the games, same as you did. I'm not going to pretend to know something, some significant reason, as to why it didn't flow. Kobe Bryant(notes) seemed perfectly adept at driving the lane with Shaq around, same with Dwyane Wade(notes). Why couldn't LeBron James(notes)?
I've no idea, but it didn't work. And when all else fails, I tend to send the stink-eye toward the big fella in his late 30s, and not the best player in the game.
Boston isn't exactly flush with drivers. The Celtics make their hay on the defensive end and try to hold things toward the realm of the mediocre offensively. There's no superstar for Shaq to co-align with in Boston. Just a bunch of like-minded geezers shooting for another ring.
With every move he makes — from Orlando to El Lay to Miami to Phoenix to Cleveland to wherever — Shaq's press conferences get less and less prominent. They don't mean as much. He's not changing any franchises. He's not just some replacement, but he's not the man you clear your cap for on the hope that you can sign him. It's an odd, uncomfortable-to-anyone-but-Shaq situation.
And it's because he's, above all, an entertainer. Not a big man. Not a minutes sopper. A song-and-dance man, so to speak. That's just how Shaq is now.
The problem is that, as uncomfortable as it may have been to see one generation's best song-and-dance men slumming on Cannonball Run or some such tripe, athletes don't have the same bit of leeway. It's still about performance and not presence. So while it might be kind of cool to see Shaq in Boston, it's not like seeing Liza Minnelli on "Arrested Development," or Mel Brooks' cameo on "Curb Your Enthusiasm."
This is what Shaq's backed himself into, for better or worse. His skiff is more "ha-ha" that "clear out, and dump it inside." The man still takes the lumps and tries to win. But on a winter night, with the basic cable running? He's more ABC Family than a TNT double-header.
I'm not asking the man to retire. Nor am I going to waste your time trying to assume how things will work for him in Boston. I'm guessing things will work poorly, based on how it has gone over the last half-decade with this four-time champion.
Shaquille O'Neal in Boston makes sense in all the rational terms. He's a star, he's a veteran and the Celtics badly need a center. If they fall short again in June (or May or even April), O'Neal won't be the reason why.
But, outside of interest in seeing this legend wearing those legendary colors, it's nothing to get too excited about. Those days are over, and Johan Petro(notes) may have been the better hire. Good thing Shaq lowered his price.

Mateen Cleaves
08-08-2010, 04:39 PM
For the veteran's minimum, this is a very low-risk move for the Pistons. If it turns out as well as their veteran's-minimum acquisition of Ben Wallace last year, it could be a really high-reward signing for Detroit.


Pistons in serious talks with seven-time All-Star Tracy McGrady
Vincent Goodwill / The Detroit News

Detroit -- Former All-Star Tracy McGrady could become a Detroit Piston very soon.

McGrady, a former scoring champion who has been plagued with injuries in recent years, sparked Detroit's interest in the past day or so, a source with knowledge of the situation told The Detroit News. If he signs, it would be to the veterans' minimum, which is around $1.2 million. As of now, nothing is imminent but the sides are having serious discussions. The Pistons have been silent on the trade market and in free agency this summer, so giving McGrady, 31, a shot to revitalize his once-promising career would be a jolt.

McGrady played six games in Houston last season before getting traded to New York after a rift over playing time. He averaged 9.4 points and 3.9 rebounds in 24 games for the Knicks. McGrady worked out for the Bulls last week, but comments of wanting to be a starter seemed to turn off Bulls management away.

The Pistons, on the other hand, have nothing to lose. They won just 27 games last season and seem open to anything, especially bringing aboard a player as talented as McGrady, who plays shooting guard and small forward and can play point guard on occasion. Since leading the league in scoring in 2003 and '04, he's played in 70 games or more only twice. He played 35 games in 2009, averaging 15.6 points before shutting it down due to knee surgery.

The Pistons have taken on former stars with injury problems before. Antonio McDyess had the same type of knee issues before signing with Detroit after the 2004 season and revitalized his career with the Pistons as a valuable reserve. In his first four seasons with the Pistons, McDyess missed only nine games.

McGrady has a dubious history with the Pistons. With the Magic in 2003, he led them to a 3-1 series lead, then proclaimed after Game 4 he was happy to be in the second round. He never made it that far as the Pistons stormed back, blowing the eighth-seeded Magic out the final three games. McGrady never has made it out the first round of the playoffs, despite playing for better-than-average teams

If McGrady checks out health-wise and can play near his usual skill level -- he's averaged 21.5 points for his 13-year career -- it would be easier for the Pistons to make a trade at the crowded shooting guard and small forward spots. While it wouldn't necessarily be a precursor for Tayshaun Prince's or Richard Hamilton's departure, it could make things easier on management if they wanted to pull the trigger.

08-11-2010, 07:00 AM
Aldridge: McGrady, Pistons agree to one-year deal
By David Aldridge, TNT analyst

The Detroit Pistons have some work to do with their roster after agreeing to terms Tuesday morning with free agent forward Tracy McGrady on a one-year deal for the veteran's minimum of $1.35 million.

A league source indicated Tuesday that the Pistons will work to "un-jam the log jam" the team now has at the shooting guard and small forward spots after signing the 31-year-old McGrady, who has been working out for several teams this summer looking for a home, including Chicago and Cleveland.

The source said that McGrady agreed without conditions to play behind starters Rip Hamilton and Tayshawn Prince next season, though it's likely that Detroit will move either Hamilton or Prince before the start of next season. It's more likely the Pistons will move Prince, who is entering the last year of his contract.

A second source said Sunday that Detroit won't move Prince unless he requests a trade.

Detroit is satisfied that McGrady is healthy after coming back last year from microfracture surgery on his left knee in February, 2009.

The Pistons consider McGrady a small risk and worth the gamble, and worth it as they try to rise again in the East.

08-12-2010, 08:47 AM

Raptors deal Belinelli to Hornets for Wright

TORONTO (AP) -- The Toronto Raptors have acquired forward Julian Wright from the New Orleans Hornets in exchange for guard Marco Belinelli.

The 6-foot-8, 225-pound Wright averaged 8.1 points and 4.6 rebounds in 68 games with New Orleans last season.

"This move should help balance the roster and alleviate some of the redundancy we have with our guards," Raptors president and general manager Bryan Colangelo said in a release Wednesday. "Julian is another young athletic player that will add depth at the small forward position."

Wright was the 13th pick in the 2007 NBA draft and has averaged 4.0 points and 2.3 rebounds in 179 career games.

Belinelli, acquired from Golden State last summer, averaged 7.1 points, 1.4 rebounds and 1.3 assists in 66 games with the Raptors.

08-12-2010, 08:48 AM

Pacers get Collison from Hornets in four-team trade

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) -- Larry Bird always said he wouldn't rush the rebuilding of the Indiana Pacers.

He stuck to his word, and it paid off. He waited until all the free agency hype died down before delivering one of the biggest moves for his franchise in years - the acquisition of point guard Darren Collison from New Orleans - in a four-way trade that also includes New Jersey and Houston.

"We said at the beginning of the summer that we were going to be patient and don't make drastic moves just to make a move," Bird said. "We have a plan here. It's a three-year plan, and I expect to get the job done in three years."

The term rebuilding might no longer apply now that the Pacers have added the 22-year-old Collison to a core that includes forward Danny Granger and center Roy Hibbert.

"I think it helps out tremendously," Bird said. "I think this was the piece that we needed. The vision I have for this franchise is to get the core group up and ready to go as quick as we can, and this piece here will accelerate everything."

The Pacers also announced Wednesday they have dealt Troy Murphy to the Nets, who sent guard Courtney Lee to Houston. To complete the trade, the Rockets shipped swingman Trevor Ariza to New Orleans.

Indiana also got James Posey from New Orleans in the deal.

The Pacers were searching for a point guard because T.J. Ford fell out of favor last season with coach Jim O'Brien. The Pacers get a good young one in Collison, who played well when Chris Paul was injured. He averaged 12.4 points and 5.7 assists as a rookie last season, including 18.8 points and 9.1 assists in 37 starts.

"I didn't think he'd have the year he had last year," Bird said. "He's solid. He likes to defend. He always could shoot the ball. We think he's a complete player."

The Nets get a good rebounder in the 6-foot-11 Murphy, a New Jersey product who is an excellent outside shooter for his size. The former first-round pick from Notre Dame is a career 39 percent shooter from 3-point range. He played in 262 games for the Pacers, with averages of 13.3 points and 9.2 rebounds per game.

"We are very pleased to add Troy to our roster," Nets general manager Billy King said. "He is a quality power forward who has the ability to stretch the floor, and we feel that he will be a very positive addition to our frontcourt rotation."

Posey has spent 11 seasons in the NBA with career averages of 8.8 points and 4.8 rebounds per game. Last season, he averaged 5.2 points and 4.3 rebounds. The cash-strapped Hornets were able to move the remaining two years and more than $13 million remaining on Posey's contract.

The Rockets cut salary with the move after re-signing point guard Kyle Lowry and power forward Luis Scola, both restricted free agents, and picking up backup center Brad Miller.

Ariza was due to make about $6.3 million this season, the first of four years left on his contract. Houston signed Ariza in July 2009, when free agent Ron Artest decided to join the Los Angeles Lakers.

Rockets general manager Daryl Morey said their involvement in the trade was mostly about the opportunity to get Lee, a 6-5 guard whom they've coveted since the 2008 draft.

"We really target players who we think will fit in well here over time," Morey said. "When we got our first chance to acquire him, we were fairly aggressive to get that done. He's very versatile."

The Rockets envisioned the 6-8 Ariza developing into a dependable scoring threat on the wing. He averaged a career-high 14.9 points in 72 games last season, but shot 39.4 percent from the field and 33.4 percent from 3-point range.

"To get something you like, you've got to give up something," Morey said. "It wasn't a situation where we were down on Trevor. It was really about that we think Courtney has a big future."

Lee, acquired from Orlando on draft night in 2009 in the Vince Carter deal, averaged 12.5 points in 71 games for the Nets last season, including 66 starts. He shot 43.6 percent from the field last season and will likely back up shooting guard Kevin Martin with the Rockets.

09-24-2010, 09:01 AM

Smart to replace Nelson as coach

By Adrian Wojnarowski, Yahoo! Sports

Don Nelson has been pushed out as Golden State Warriors coach and replaced with assistant Keith Smart, league sources told Yahoo! Sports.

Nelson, the all-time winningest coach in NBA history, will officially resign and accept a settlement on the $6 million owed him on his contract.

New Warriors owner Joe Lacob was determined to replace Nelson as coach, and Nelson, sources said, was glad to take his money and return to retirement in Hawaii.

Smart is working on a contract with the Warriors, and it’s still being negotiated whether he’ll be given a deal guaranteed beyond the 2010-11 season, a source said.

09-24-2010, 09:14 AM
Hornets acquire Smith, Green
By Adrian Wojnarowski, Yahoo! Sports

The New Orleans Hornets have traded forwards Craig Brackins(notes) and Darius Songaila(notes) to the Philadelphia 76ers for Jason Smith(notes) and Willie Green(notes), league sources told Yahoo! Sports.

New 76ers president Rod Thorn had targeted Brackins in the June draft, but the Hornets selected him with the No. 21 pick. Songaila averaged 7.2 points and 3.1 rebounds in 75 games for the Hornets last season. He will make $4.8 million in the last year of his contract this season.

Smith, a 7-foot forward/center, was a first-round pick of the Sixers in 2007. He averaged 3.4 points and 2.4 rebounds in 56 games last season.

Green, a 6-3 shooting guard, had spent all seven seasons of his NBA career in Philadelphia. He averaged 8.7 points and 2.1 assists in 73 games last season and will make $4 million in the final year of his contract.

09-25-2010, 08:55 AM
Darko returns to Wolves with new contract, outlook


MANKATO, Minnesota (AP)—In two months with Minnesota last season, an out-of-shape Darko Milicic(notes) showed the kind of passing savvy and defensive instincts that no other Timberwolves big man had displayed all season long.

Emboldened by the kind of playing time he never got in the NBA in the two previous years, Milicic displayed enough talent and potential to coax the Timberwolves into re-signing him to a four-year deal with $16 million guaranteed.

“It’s undeniable when you watch Darko work out or when you see him on the court, the guy has some real skills that are not easily found in our league,” Timberwolves president David Kahn said.

But that’s always been the biggest problem with Milicic. He has the natural skills and ability to make coaches and executives drool. It’s what prompted the Detroit Pistons to take him second overall in the 2003 draft, ahead of major stars Carmelo Anthony(notes), Chris Bosh(notes) and Dwyane Wade(notes).

Milicic has never been able to turn that potential into sustained production in the NBA. Maybe that’s why there was such an outcry when the Wolves re-signed Milicic to a fairly modest deal by NBA standards.

Milicic’s deal could be worth as much as $20 million if he completes it and he will make an average of $4 million per season. The average salary for a starting NBA center this season ranges from $7.3 million to $8.4 million.

Read complete article here - http://sports.yahoo.com/nba/news?slug=ap-timberwolves-darkosdeal