Chris Paul had a meeting today with representatives from just about every important aspect of the Hornets’ operations, with the intent to iron out exactly why Paul wants to be traded and what he wants the Hornets to do about it. The meeting could easily be seen as a formality while Paul takes strides towards the door, but the meeting appears to be surprisingly positive for New Orleans.
Here was Chris Paul’s response to the meeting via Twitter:
“The meeting went well. It was great to get an opportunity to sit down
with Coach Williams, President Weber and our new General Manager Dell
Demps. I expressed my desire to win and I like what they said about the
direction that they want to take the team. I have been a Hornet my
entire career and I hope to represent the city of New Orleans and state
of Louisiana for many years to come.”
As Marc Stein of ESPN.com noted, it’s silly to think that Paul’s perspective has completely changed as a result of one meeting. Hornets GM Dell Demps claims that Paul didn’t demand a trade during the meeting. Maybe that’s the case. Or maybe any public trade demands would get Paul fined, even if channeled through the team first.
This could be perceived as something vaguely resembling progress for the Hornets, who aren’t going to give up the league’s top point guard without a fight. Even if today’s events are only delaying the inevitable, New Orleans has possibly bought themselves some time as they attempt to smooth things over with Paul.
Then again, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports, nothing has changed. So we don’t really know anything now that we didn’t know before: Paul seems interested in a trade, the Hornets want to keep him, and the two will continue to play this game until things are decided one way or another.
The NBA has unveiled its top 100 plays of the 2015-16 season, and there’s no mystery as to what were the top two.
No. 2: Stephen Curry‘s halfcourt buzzer-beater in overtime against the Thunder in Oklahoma City during the season.
No. 1: “The Block” by LeBron James on Andre Iguodala in the final stretch of Game 7 of the Finals.
There’s plenty more, too, and if you have 25 minutes to kill, you can and should watch all of them above.
Tyler Zeller is one of the few restricted free agents left on the market who could make an actual impact next season, and on Saturday morning, he’s come off the board. Steve Bulpett of the Boston Herald reports that the fourth-year big man has agreed to a deal to stay with the Celtics. It’s for two years and $16 million, with the second season being a team option.
Zeller isn’t a starter, but he’s a nice rotation big man, especially at that price. He can play minutes off the bench for Boston, and his contract is also very movable with the second season being unguaranteed. He played just 11.8 minutes per game last season, but averaged 18.5 points and 9 rebounds per 36 minutes.
The Toronto Raptors were good last season, second best team in the East. That means the guys on Inside the NBA on TNT had to talk about them.
Which means Charles Barkley had to say “Jonas Valanciunas” a lot. Which is high comedy. While a lot of people struggle to say his name the guy is a solid NBA center who, with a little practice, you can say (and spell) his name pretty easily.
This comes from a YouTube user, via Reddit, with a hat tip to Eye on Basketball.
Argentina isn’t considered a medal contender heading into the Rio Olympics. Their golden generation — led by Manu Ginobili — has picked up a lot of speed on the downhill side of their careers at this point.
They didn’t provide much of a challenge for Team USA in an exhibition game Friday night in Las Vegas, one won by the USA 111-74. Kevin Durant impressed playing with his new teammates in dropping 23 points, Paul George had 18, and the Americans had their way in the game.
Which is what we’re going to see a lot of in Rio — the USA’s talent level is just steps above any other team in the tournament.