Magic match offer, keep JJ Redick


nba_redick.jpgWhat follows is a sentence that I never thought I would type three years ago:

The Orlando Magic had no choice but to match the three-year, $20 million offer to JJ Redick.

Orlando did just that Thursday, according to FanHouse (and confirmed by other sources now).

Redick came into the league with that Duke hype and was a guy who could knock down the three. And that was about it. He had trouble seeing the floor because Stan Van Gundy wants guys to defend.

But credit to Redick because he wanted it, he worked hard and developed his game. He made it happen. He can defend now, he makes the right decisions on offense, and plays under control even under pressure. And he can still knock down the three.

Orlando needed to match for two reasons. One, he’s now a key part of their rotation and if they are a team serious about their title chances they need him on the floor. It was not a coincidence that he was getting some key minutes from Vince Carter in the playoffs.

Second, if Orlando didn’t match, Redick would have gone to Chicago. There is an arms race in the East now with Miami and Boston (Jermaine O’Neal makes them even bigger and longer) and everything Chicago has done. Redick would have been a perfect fit at the two in Chicago, and the Magic can’t let another good team in the conference get better like that.

Orlando’s ownership is spending to win, they could have a payroll pushing $84 million (as it stands now). That’s way over the luxury tax line, but in the arms race in the East they have to spend to have a chance.

Derrick Rose being back for start of season in question

Fred Hoiberg, Derrick Rose
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The Bulls have said Derrick Rose is about a week away from returning after suffering a facial fracture this preseason.

The start of the NBA season is two weeks from today (Oct. 27).

So Rose will be ready to go when the Bulls start their season that first night against Cleveland, right? Don’t bet on it, says Vincent Goodwill of, quoting coach Fred Hoiberg.

The opening night projection for a Derrick Rose return is a bit murky at this point, as the Bulls are taking a cautious approach to his recovery with Fred Hoiberg essentially ruling him out for the rest of the preseason.

“Most likely (out for the preseason),” Hoiberg said….

In fact, it wouldn’t be surprising to see Rose sit out the first handful of games, as the Bulls start the season with a three-game in four-night stretch starting Oct. 27 against the Cleveland Cavaliers, which is in two weeks.

“That will be in consideration, sure,” Hoiberg said. “We gotta make sure, he really hasn’t done anything and that will be a good two or three weeks where he has total inactivity, so just to throw him back out there going 100 percent with his speed and everything, you just don’t want to take any risks, chances, where it could be a lingering issue.”

Just what TNT and the NBA hoped for with an opening night Bulls vs. Cavaliers showcase: Kirk Hinrich vs. Mo Williams. (Don’t forget Kyrie Irving will miss the start of the season recovering from his knee surgery.)

Of course, this is the smart play for the Bulls who need to be thinking about getting Rose fully healthy and focusing on what condition he will be come April 27, not Oct. 27.

And of course, a lot of Bulls fans who are down on Rose will slam him for this. Even though the injury was a freak accident and the team is right to be patient.

Rose could play opening night, if he gets back to practice next week and can get closer to basketball shape. But I wouldn’t bet on it.

Stephen Curry apologizes for Warriors’ health, playoff path, success

Stephen Curry, DeAndre Jordan, Spencer Hawes

Draymond Green wasn’t the only Warrior firing back at perceived critics today.

A sarcastic Stephen Curry joined the fun (and to his credit, did so much more appropriately than his teammate).


I just want to say, I apologize for us being healthy. I apologize for us playing who’s in front of us. I apologize for all the accolades we’ve received as a team and individually. I’m very, truly sorry. We’ll rectify that situation this year.

We try to have fun with it.

What the Warriors refuse to realize: Acknowledging the fortunate breaks they received en route to their championship is not the same as saying they didn’t deserve their championship. It’s not insulting them.

Of course, the Warriors aren’t obligated to fully understand the critiques. They’re incentivized to spin the comments into motivation.

Mission clearly accomplished.