23 Jul 2014 at 8:48pm
The Minnesota Timberwolves are weighing their options when it comes to trading All-Star Kevin Love, with the Cleveland Cavaliers and Chicago Bulls both trying to land the versatile forward. Talks have picked up again this week, with the Cavaliers coming off of their long-held resistance to including No. 1 overall draft Andrew Wiggins in an offer and making a trade with Utah on Tuesday to help make an acquisition easier to pull off. Just as the Cavs appeared to be closing in on grabbing Love to pair with LeBron James and Kyrie Irving in a new-look ''Big 3'' in Cleveland, the Bulls appear to be making one last run to try to wrestle him away from their Eastern Conference competitors.
23 Jul 2014 at 7:10pm
First-round pick Doug McDermott and two previous first-rounders -- Taj Gibson and Nikola Mirotic -- are part of the Chicago Bulls' trade offer to the Minnesota Timberwolves for Kevin Love according to NBA reporter Chris Sheridan. "The hang-up is Mirotic and McDermott signed their contracts (Tuesday)," Sheridan told 87.7 FM The Game in Chicago.
23 Jul 2014 at 4:49pm
A look around the league and the Web that covers it. It's also important to note that the rotation order and starting nods aren't always listed in order of importance. That's for you, dear reader, to figure out.
C : SB Nation . The Chicago Bulls have reportedly upped their offer for Kevin Love, as relayed by Kevin Zimmerman, though the initial source in the report has proven to be dubious in the past. Chicago cannot include rookie Doug McDermott in any deal for another 29 days. PF : SB Nation . Tom Ziller explains why the Cleveland Cavaliers need to pounce now in its attempts to lure Love from Minnesota. SF : Sports Illustrated . Rob Mahoney with an excellent and nuanced breakdown of the two different sides to Klay Thompson?s game. SG : ESPN Insider . Behind the pay wall, but a sound breakdown of the three options Minnesota is staring down as it attempts to deal Kevin Love. PG : Charlotte Observer . Kemba Walker talks about welcoming the similarly-minded Lance Stephenson to Charlotte. 6th : Pro Basketball Talk . The NBA just wrapped up its most-watched Summer League in history. 7th : Grantland . Zach Lowe details the plight of Eric Bledsoe, as his Phoenix Suns sit in the catbird seat, with restricted free agent leverage in hand. 8th : Arizona Republic . Even with Bledsoe?s future uncertain, it?s still just fine to get giddy over these Phoenix Suns. 9th : For the Win . Nate Scott with a look at why Kevin Durant should leave Oklahoma City for his hometown-ish Washington Wizards. In 2016. This will never end. 10th . SB Nation . Shockingly, Oklahoma City Thunder owners Clay Bennett and Aubrey McClendon might be doing some rather duplicitous, money-saving stuff.
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Kelly Dwyer is an editor for Ball Don't Lie on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at KDonhoops@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter! Follow @KDonhoops
23 Jul 2014 at 11:47am
First-round pick Doug McDermott and two previous first-rounders -- Taj Gibson and Nikola Mirotic -- are part of the Chicago Bulls' trade offer to the Minnesota Timberwolves for Kevin Love according to NBA reporter Chris Sheridan. "The hang-up is Mirotic and McDermott signed their contracts (Tuesday)," Sheridan told 87.7 FM The Game in Chicago. If Minnesota likes the offer way, way better than the Cleveland offer, they can wait."
22 Jul 2014 at 7:50pm
Andrew Wiggins will sign his rookie contract with the Cavaliers. A person familiar with the negotiations says the Cavs will sign the No. 1 overall pick to his deal, an agreement that would prevent any potential trade involving the small forward from being completed for 30 days. The Minnesota Timberwolves and Cavaliers have been discussing a potential deal that would send All-Star forward Kevin Love to the Cavaliers for Wigging, Anthony Bennett and other pieces. The person familiar with the talks says Wiggins will sign with Cleveland as early as Wednesday.
22 Jul 2014 at 7:15pm
(The Sports Xchange) - Talks between the Chicago Bulls and Minnesota Timberwolves surrounding forward Kevin Love threaten to derail talk of a newly formed 'Big Three' in Cleveland. The Cavaliers are offering No. 1 overall draft pick Andrew Wiggins and 2013 top pick Anthony Bennett to acquire Love from the Timberwolves, but Chicago is still in the picture, according to ESPN. Trade options from the Bulls are likely to be young veterans and former first-round picks Taj Gibson and Jimmy Butler. It is not known whether the Bulls would part with sweet-shooting forward Doug McDermott. ...
22 Jul 2014 at 7:02pm
Talks between the Chicago Bulls and Minnesota Timberwolves surrounding forward Kevin Love threaten to derail talk of a newly formed Big Three in Cleveland.
22 Jul 2014 at 5:28pm
CHICAGO (AP) -- The Chicago Bulls say they have signed Doug McDermott, their first-round draft pick and last season's college player of the year.
22 Jul 2014 at 10:33am
USA Basketball selected 13 players for the 2014 USA Men's Select Team that will train July 28-31 with the 2014 USA Basketball Men's National Team during training camp in Las Vegas.
21 Jul 2014 at 7:19pm
The Cleveland Cavaliers plan to sign No. 1 overall draft pick Andrew Wiggins to a contract this week, according to ESPN.com.
21 Jul 2014 at 6:41pm
Ryan Knaus digs deep into each NBA team's offensive repertoire, including play types, in the latest edition of The Numbers Game.
21 Jul 2014 at 5:12pm
Last week, the Indiana Pacers lost Lance Stephenson. On Monday, they replaced one of the NBA's best young players with shooting guard Rodney Stuckey. It's a swap that will make it a challenge for Indiana to win a third straight title in a division that might be the toughest in basketball. ''We just have to come out and play hard and play with each other,'' Stuckey said of the vastly improved Central Division.
21 Jul 2014 at 3:32pm
The Chicago Bulls have made some big changes this summer as they try to beef up their roster and make a run at the Eastern Conference crown. While adding players like Pau Gasol and Nikola Mirotic, there was one thing they definitely didn't want to change: Kirk Hinrich. After coming to agreement with Hinrich earlier this summer, the Bulls officially announced the signing on Monday. The person requested anonymity because the Bulls do not publicly comment on contract details.
21 Jul 2014 at 12:19pm
The Chicago Bulls re-signed guard Kirk Hinrich on Monday.
21 Jul 2014 at 11:42am
The Chicago Bulls signed second-round draft pick Cameron Bairstow on Monday.
20 Jul 2014 at 9:59pm
Glen Rice Jr., a second-year Washington Wizards swingman, was a unanimous selection as the Most Valuable Player of the NBA's Summer League in Las Vegas.
20 Jul 2014 at 2:12pm
The Chicago Bulls are close to a free-agent deal with point guard Aaron Brooks, according to ESPN.com.
19 Jul 2014 at 6:10pm
The Chicago Bulls are close to reaching a deal to bring in free-agent guard Aaron Brooks next season, according to ESPN.com.
19 Jul 2014 at 12:10pm
Los Angeles Lakers guard Kobe Bryant said he is "scared" about his future after basketball. Bryant, who turns 36 in August, is under contract with the Lakers for two more seasons. Bryant is the subject of a documentary that airs on Showtime in November. "Kobe Bryant's Muse" looks into his life last season when the Lakers went 27-55 as he recovered from the injuries.
18 Jul 2014 at 9:41pm
The Los Angeles Lakers have not had the most impressive offseason in the NBA. After striking out with the summer's big names, general manager Mitch Kupchak settled for deals with players like Houston Rockets castoff Jeremy Lin and 25-year-old journeyman power forward Ed Davis. Meanwhile, the Lakers have brought back incumbents Nick Young and Jordan Hill on what seemed like above-market deals. Even the promising moves, like adding rookie power forward Julius Randle in the draft, seem questionable now that the team has a glut of players at several positions. It's bad enough that Thursday's news that the Lakers had claimed Chicago Bulls amnesty case Carlos Boozer was met largely with laughs and derision.
In short, this squad looks likely to miss out on the postseason even if Kobe Bryant returns in full health, which is iffy in itself. When Kobe signed his massive two-year extension with the Lakers last November, he did so with the expectation that the team would compete in some form. So the franchise icon must be really mad now, right?
Not so much. In an appearance at the Television Critics Association press tour to plug his upcoming Showtime documentary "Kobe Bryant's Muse," the 16-time All-Star said he's in favor of Kupchak's moves. From ESPN.com's Ramona Shelburne on Twitter:
Kobe: "I can sit here and tell you with 100 percent honesty that I'm happy with the effort the organization put forward this summer" ? Ramona Shelburne (@ramonashelburne) July 18, 2014
Kobe "I think Mitch has responded quite efficiently (from missing on Melo/Pau) by picking up some of the pieces he has" ? Ramona Shelburne (@ramonashelburne) July 18, 2014
It's easy to make fun of Kobe's comments. For one thing, the phrase "I can sit here and tell you with 100 percent honesty" sounds like cover for an opinion that makes little sense, almost like when someone says "with all due respect" before launching an offensive tirade. It also doesn't help that Kobe uses the word "efficiently" in reference to the acquisitions of high-volume shooters like Boozer and Young. Putting on a happy face doesn't change the Lakers' dim prospects for the 2014-15 season.
Of course, the optimistic route is an easier path than complaining, because Kobe must take some of the blame for the Lakers' inability to convince prized free agents they're an ideal destination. When Kobe signed his new deal, which now takes up roughly 40 percent of next season's salary cap, it became clear that the Lakers would struggle to add enough players to the roster to win titles. Those chances became worse once his injury issues persisted last season, and heading into July's free agency period there was very little evidence that the Lakers were on the brink of serious success. He made contention very difficult for himself and the team when he agreed to that deal. That was his prerogative, and it's hard to argue with making close to $50 million over two years. But that choice did come with some repercussions.
The question is if Kobe's positivity will persist if and when the Lakers season starts to go downhill. Kobe is one of the best players in the history of the sport, but he's never been known for his patience or magnanimity. Imagine a scenario in which Kobe plays well and the Lakers still struggle to win games. Can you see him putting criticism aside at 36 years old with such little time left to add to his legacy?
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Eric Freeman is a writer for Ball Don't Lie on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter!
18 Jul 2014 at 8:50pm
Center Andrew Bynum, who played just 26 games the past two seasons because of knee problems, may miss the entire 2014-2015 season if he opts to undergo the Regenokine knee therapy procedure, the New York Post reported. Bynum's agent, David Lee, told the Post that Bynum is considering sitting out the season so he can have the procedure performed. The agent said Bynum is contemplating working with with German doctor Peter Wehling, who has worked with Kobe Bryant and Alex Rodriguez. Lee said that if Bynum undergoes the procedure and recovers sufficiently, he could return in 2015-16, possibly with the New York Knicks.
18 Jul 2014 at 6:48pm
(The Sports Xchange) - The Cleveland Cavaliers are offering No. 1 overall draft pick Andrew Wiggins in an attempt to acquire All-Star power forward Kevin Love from the Minnesota Timberwolves, multiple media outlets reported. The Cavaliers had been reluctant to trade Wiggins but reportedly have recently become open to it. Cleveland and Minnesota have been in trade talks since the Cavaliers signed superstar forward LeBron James a week ago. Yahoo Sports reported Thursday that James had contacted Love since the Cavaliers decided to include Wiggins in a possible deal.
18 Jul 2014 at 5:38pm
The Cleveland Cavaliers are offering No. 1 overall draft pick Andrew Wiggins to acquire All-Star power forward Kevin Love from the Minnesota Timberwolves, multiple media outlets reported. The Cavaliers had been reluctant to trade Wiggins but reportedly have recently become open to it. Cleveland and Minnesota have been in trade talks since the Cavaliers signed superstar forward LeBron James a week ago.
18 Jul 2014 at 4:41pm
Pau Gasol talked to Joakim Noah when the Chicago Bulls traveled to Los Angeles to recruit the free-agent center. He spoke with Derrick Rose over the phone, and Mike Dunleavy also reached out to the 7-foot veteran. What Gasol found was a hungry team in search of a championship, and it was enough to convince the skilled Spaniard to trade the warmth of Southern California for the cold winters of the Windy City. Gasol and newcomer Nikola Mirotic were at the United Center on Friday for a pair of press conferences announcing their new contracts.
18 Jul 2014 at 4:33pm
Like sands through the hourglass, these are the days of the post-star-and-significant-role-player-signing-period of NBA free agency. Let's continue our consideration of the smaller deals getting worked out in the league, beginning with a trip to the Big Easy.
? The New Orleans Pelicans added three perimeter players to fill out their wing rotation, agreeing to terms with free agents Jimmer Fredette and John Salmons, and bringing back Darius Miller.
Fredette, the 25-year-old former BYU superstar and No. 10 pick in the 2011 NBA draft, will receive a one-year deal for the veteran's minimum of $981,084 , according to ESPN.com's Marc Stein . Salmons, 34, will earn $2 million on a one-year deal to join his sixth team in 13 NBA seasons, according to Chris Haynes of CSNNW.com . Terms of Miller's deal were not disclosed, according to Brett Martel of The Associated Press ; as John Reid of the New Orleans Times-Picayune notes , the Pelicans declined to extend a $1.15 million qualifying offer to the 24-year-old Miller, whom New Orleans selected in the second round of the 2012 draft, making it likely (as Dan Feldman of ProBasketballTalk surmised ) that Miller got a minimum deal of $915,243).
While the Pelicans ranked sixth in the NBA in 3-point accuracy last season, knocking down 37.3 percent of their triples as a team, they ranked second-to-last in the league in makes and attempts per game. Whether you attribute this lack of long-distance proficiency more to head coach Monty Williams' offense, which has ranked in the bottom half of the league in long balls taken and drained in each of his four seasons on the bench, or to the horrendous plague of injuries that excised three of the Pelicans' top four 3-point shooters (Ryan Anderson, Eric Gordon and Jrue Holiday) from the lineup for significant stretches, the fact remains that New Orleans desperately needed floor spacing and shot-making ... and that was before their top beyond-the-arc marksman, Anthony Morrow, skipped town for a new three-year deal with the Oklahoma City Thunder.
18 Jul 2014 at 3:45pm
The Chicago Bulls officially announced Friday that they signed power forward/center Pau Gasol and forward Nikola Mirotic. Terms of the Gasol's contract were not released by the team, but Yahoo Sports reported the deal is for three years and $22 million. Last season, Gasol averaged 17.4 points and 9.7 rebounds per game last season, despite a career-low 31.4 minutes per game. "We are really excited to add such a versatile player to our roster who has been both an All-Star and an NBA champion," general manager Gar Forman said about Gasol in a statement.
18 Jul 2014 at 12:23pm
The Cleveland Cavaliers, as presently constructed and until Indiana and Chicago define themselves, are the best team in the Eastern conference. It?s true that there are holes in this roster, it?s true that the team that won just 33 games last season has a long way to go, but the addition of the Best Player in the World and what should prove to be a forceful coach in David Blatt has to make these Cavs the clear favorites to come out of their conference.
That doesn?t mean the team can?t pine for better things, though.
As a basketball nut, I?d give a year off of my life to see LeBron James, Kyrie Irving, Andrew Wiggins and Anthony Bennett all working in tandem at the same age, ideally through ages 26 to 30. Those four, when paired with role players like Tristan Thompson and Anderson Varejao, would act as multiple title-winners were they to be working together in their respective primes. In a perfect world, all four of them would have been born in 1988.
The problem, here, is that LeBron turns 30 this December. Irving and Bennett turned 22 and 21 last March, and Wiggins is 19 months removed from being legally able to buy a bottle of white wine to finish off the nice lemon butter sauce he just made. This shouldn?t preclude LeBron from winning a title in Cleveland, nobody should ever say that, but it would be nice if the differences were minimized somewhat.
This is why LeBron has reached out to Minnesota Timberwolves forward Kevin Love, gauging his interest in forcing a trade to the Cavs and extending his contract in Cleveland. This is why Andrew Wiggins, less than a month from being trumped up as Cleveland?s newest savior as the No. 1 pick in the draft, is reportedly available. This is why the LeBron?s Cavaliers are attempting to win now.
As they should. Because it?s possible to deal a stellar young player like Andrew Wiggins while acknowledging the fact that, yeah, this guy is going to be a beast someday.
Love isn?t exactly nearing the end of his particular rope. At age 25, he still (frighteningly) has a few years to improve upon the remarkable production he?s already given the Timberwolves, production that can?t be accurately detailed ( are you listening, SportsCenter ?) by per-game stats, as Love needlessly came off the bench for the majority of his first two seasons under coaches Kevin McHale and Kurt Rambis.
He?ll earn over $15 million next season and he has a player option to decline for 2015-16, making him a free agent next summer. He?s never played in the postseason and the best teammate he?s ever played with was either Al Jefferson or Nikola Pekovic. He does not want to be with the Timberwolves, and we don?t blame him.
The problem, as has been long assumed in NBA circles since last spring, is that Timberwolves part-owner/president/coach/(eventual point guard?) Flip Saunders seems hell-bent on proving to Love that he can win him over with his coaching in 2014-15, and convince Love to stay with Saunders? plan for Minnesota?s future.
That?s debatable, but it?s also understandable given Saunders? paucity of options. Reportedly, the best offer that?s been floated for Love would at best give the Wolves Klay Thompson, David Lee, and a future first rounder while Minnesota shipped back Kevin Martin?s somewhat-onerous contract. Even that deal has been repeatedly shot down by all manner of Golden State chirpers who swear that Klay is unavailable ? it would also saddle the Wolves with Lee?s hefty contract, and an immediate and possibly maximum contract extension for Thompson. Who is a shooting guard, and does not matter.
The Cavaliers can offer a better package. Sources in Cleveland revealed on Thursday that they?d be willing to offer Wiggins in a deal , and a transaction featuring Wiggins and Anthony Bennett alongside some other brand of cap fodder (a third team, with Cleveland capped out, will likely have to join in the fun) that the Cavs would have to throw in to nearly match Love?s $15.7 million contract for next season would seem to be the best that Flip Saunders can do.
Assuming he wants to ?do,? because we still don?t know if he wants to ?do.?
Bennett?s play was worth defending during his embarrassing rookie season, and we attempted to repeatedly. He was playing while injured, while out of position, while out of shape, and while out of the interests of the team?s former coaching staff. It should come as no surprise to those that saw his promise in college that he is currently enjoying a solid Summer League in 2014. Wiggins, meanwhile, may turn out to be the better player than Love in the long run (that?s saying something, for a guy in Love that averaged 26 and 12 last season), and there?s absolutely nothing better than a young stud (or two) on a rookie contract.
LeBron James? situation is so unique, though, that you have to wonder if it?s worth pushing for a deal like this even before training camp, even before Minnesota gets desperate and flakey when things aren?t turning out well for them prior to next season?s trade deadline.
James is 29, but what kind of ?29? is he? There is no plausible comparison for his career arc that would make any sense, as some amalgamation of Michael Jordan, Magic Johnson, Larry Bird and Karl Malone still wouldn?t do his prospects justice. Jordan didn?t make the second round of the playoffs until he was 25, and he didn?t play significant playoff basketball as a contender until he was 26. By that age, LeBron had made the Finals, he was on his way to a second Finals trip (the first of four consecutive), he?d made the conference finals three times, and he?d whiffed his way through The Decision. While trading 82 game seasons as a pro from ages 18-to-21 with Jordan?s three years at North Carolina.
This isn?t a comparison between the accomplishments of MJ and LBJ, as this is a team sport. What we are comparing is the mileage on those legs. If you?ll recall, even before the tragic loss of Jordan?s father in the late summer of 1993, Michael was already addressing rumors about a retirement in the spring of 1993, citing the abject exhaustion of making it to the Finals three years in a row, while playing in the Olympics in 1992.
LeBron just finished a fourth consecutive (and fifth overall) Finals trip, with an Olympics (one of three in his career, alongside other summertime international play) tossed in, and he has no Birmingham Barons on his particular horizon. James is in Cleveland to (hopefully) finish off a historic career, and we have no clue how the teen phenom who was asked to play point guard with Karl Malone?s body will hold up as he enters his 30s. Pointing to Kevin Garnett or Kobe Bryant or Malone himself (who was still a fantastic, sometimes game-changing player in his final season at age 40 despite injuries) as proof of endurance would be missing the point.
This isn?t to say James will break down, not in the slightest. This is only to point out that he?s a unique, special player working through unprecedented circumstances. And though Wiggins and Bennett aren?t being asked to work as James? clear No. 2 ? that?s Kyrie Irving?s job, and he better get ready ? their potential All-Star futures (yes, even Bennett?s) will not mean much to a star in James that has already played nearly two full regular seasons? worth of playoff games so far in his career.
The issue from here is whether or not Love is truly what the Cleveland Cavaliers need.
They?ll have shooting. Bennett has struggled from long range during the Summer League, but he has a good stroke, while Mike Miller is already in the hopper and Ray Allen may not be far behind. The rebounding, between Thompson, Varejao, James and Bennett should be fine. The team does not lack for floor-spacers, screen-setters, or shot-makers.
Those three things, alongside the all-world rebounding and gorgeous passing, are what Love does best. How much of a good thing do you need, though, especially with Anderson Varejao averaging just 37 games a year over his last four seasons?
It?s not as if the Cavs need a center to defend some low post scoring stud, those dudes don?t exist anymore. They do need one (and a reserve, if you wouldn?t mind) to protect the rim when some sprightly point guard or do-it-all forward makes the extra pass in the lane. The problem is that obvious candidates at this position aren?t exactly available right now ? there?s a reason the Dallas Mavericks are happily paying Tyson Chandler nearly $15 million and that Joakim Noah is about as untouchable as players get these days ? and Cleveland?s potential panacea may not be available even for the 2013 and 2014 top overall NBA draft picks.
Which speaks to the oddness of Cleveland?s situation, with all that lottery luck, James? immediacy in spite of the likely prognostication that he?ll age effortlessly into his early and mid-30s, and the state of the game as it is. That adding a 26 and 12 guy, who is still yet to enter his prime, might not be the answer. This is wonderfully mad.
For now, though, Wiggins isn?t the answer. He could turn into the Scottie Pippen that LeBron never had (Dwyane Wade, though sterling, boasted a different skill set) and one of this league?s great players. That?ll take years, though. Pippen, you?ll recall, had just one All-Star appearance to his credit when the Bulls won their first title, and that was after four years of college and four seasons of practicing with Michael Jordan every day.
Four months after Jordan turned 30, he retired for the first time. Four months after James turns 30, the 2015 NBA playoffs will start, with LeBron (health permitting) already having played over 300 more combined regular and postseason games than Jordan. LeBron?s situation isn?t as dire as Dirk Nowitzki?s, Kobe Bryant?s, or even Dwyane Wade?s, but he has worked up quite the resume, and a whole lot of minutes.
You can trade the NBA?s next great star and be excused for it. Especially if it means aiding in the championship aspirations for the NBA?s current, and potentially greatest ever, star.
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Kelly Dwyer is an editor for Ball Don't Lie on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at KDonhoops@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter! Follow @KDonhoops
18 Jul 2014 at 11:49am
The Chicago Bulls signed forward Nikola Mirotic to a contract on Friday. Mirotic, 23, averaged 12.4 points on 50.8 percent shooting (including 36.1 percent on 3-pointers), 4.6 rebounds, 1.2 assists, 1.06 steals and 24.0 minutes over 31 games with Real Madrid CF of the Liga ACB last season. In five seasons with Real Madrid CF, Mirotic has averaged 13.1 points, 4.5 rebounds, 0.9 assists, 0.76 steals and 24.2 minutes over 97 games (71 starts) while shooting 49.8 percent, including 40.2 percent from 3-point range and 84.8 percent on free throws.
18 Jul 2014 at 11:40am
The Charlotte Hornets re-signed point guard Jannero Pargo to a one-year, $1.5 million deal, according to RealGM.com.
18 Jul 2014 at 11:13am
The New Orleans Pelicans have agreed to contract terms with guard Jimmer Fredette and forward Darius Miller, people familiar with the moves said Friday. Two people confirmed Fredette's deal and one person confirmed Miller's to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the transactions have not been announced. One person said Fredette's contract would be for one season but did not discuss financial terms. Details on Miller's new deal were not discussed.