One of the big trades on draft day involved the Portland Trail Blazers acquiring 27-year old point guard Raymond Felton, who had what was perhaps the best season of his career last season while playing for both the Knicks and the Nuggets after he was sent to Denver in the Carmelo Anthony trade.
With veteran free-agent point guard Andre Miller unlikely to return to Portland, Felton appears to be the Blazers’ point guard of the future, and he sat down with 1080 The Fan in Portland to discuss how he thinks he’ll mesh with Nate McMillan’s slow-paced style of play, how much he loves Portland’s fans, and his weight, which he admits got a little high after he was traded to Denver.
The whole interview is worth checking out, but the most interesting tidbit may be the final one:
Whether or not he thinks Portland can be a long-term answer:
“No, I think I’m definitely willing to sign a long-term deal here so we’ll see what happens.”
With Brandon Roy and Greg Oden’s medical status constantly in question, the Blazers desperately need a young player who they can count on to be a leader and provide some stability, as well as the floor-spacing that Andre Miller couldn’t give them. Felton, who is just now entering his prime, is a natural floor general, and shot 38.5% from three in his last season with Charlotte and 46% from deep in his 21 games with Denver, may be able to fill that role.
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.