It’s an annual tradition in the NBA: Some player who flew under the radar for most of the season steps up big in the playoffs and finals, then gets rewarded with an oversized contract by another team that falls in love with that performance.
Miami’s Mario Chalmers is the leading candidate to be that guy this year.
Chalmers has knocked down big shots in the finals and has defended well on the perimeter. And, he’s a free agent after this season. When asked about that by Hoopsworld, Chalmers gave the standard answer involving family.
“It’s up to everybody,” Chalmers said about his possible return to the HEAT. “I love playing here. I would love to stay here, but, I mean, I’ve got to do what’s best for me and my family.”
Chalmers made $854,389 this past season and while there is a $1.1 million qualifying offer out there according to Sham Sports, Chalmers will get to test the market (whenever the lockout ends).
Chalmers has hit big shots in the playoffs — something he has done since helping Kansas to the national title in college — but during the regular season averaged 6.4 points per game on 39.9 percent shooting. He hit 35.9 percent of his threes, which is by far where most of his shot attempts come from.
Chalmers is a good defender, which matters a lot, but he is not going to give you consistent offense.
But some team always falls in love with these finals performances and overpays.
With so much focus in recent weeks being on NBA players speaking out on social issues, it’s worth remembering that Kareem Abdul-Jabbar has been one of the most vocal athletes in America on these things for decades. The Hall of Fame and all-time leading scorer in NBA history addressed the Democratic National Convention on Thursday evening, urging voters to vote for Hillary Clinton in November, and opened his remarks by introducing himself as Michael Jordan, because “Donald Trump couldn’t tell the difference.”
You can watch the video of his speech below:
In the weeks since Kevin Durant announced he was signing with the Golden State Warriors, we have yet to hear Russell Westbrook speak on his former teammate’s decision. This week, ESPN.com’s Royce Young indicated in a podcast interview that Durant was telling Westbrook and others in the days leading up to his decision that he was coming back to Oklahoma City. He later walked back his report, saying he misspoke. On Thursday, Durant himself told The Vertical‘s Shams Charania that he never said any such thing, or misled Westbrook or anyone else about his intentions.
“It’s false,” Durant told The Vertical on Thursday. “I didn’t say that – words about me telling Russell or Nick that I would stay or leave never came out of my mouth. We met as teammates, but no promises came out of it. In this day and age, I can’t control anything people claim out there. Someone can go out and say something random right now, and people will believe it.
“I never told Russell or Nick [Collison], ‘All right, guys, I’m coming back to the Thunder’ – and then a week later, I decide not to. Never happened. I don’t operate like that. I heard people say that story, but it’s not the truth.”
So that settles that.
CHICAGO (AP) The Chicago Bulls have signed guard Spencer Dinwiddie.
The Bulls acquired Dinwiddie in a trade with Detroit last month and waived him three weeks ago. He spent two years with the Pistons and appeared in 12 games last season, averaging 4.8 points and 13.3 minutes.
The Bulls announced the move Thursday.