Lou Amundson is not a game changer inside, but he is the kind of guy every team could use — an effort guy who can rebound and defend. Well, he can be that when he’s healthy, but the Warriors brought him in last season and he played only 46 games and averaged just 15 minutes in those.
He had a finger injury and missed more than a month to start the season, he had back spasms around the All-Star Break. Through that, he never really gained the trust of new coach Keith Smart.
Now, Amundson tells Matt Steinmetz of CSNBayArea.com he is ready to go next season.
“In retrospect, how I feel now with how I felt then. I wanted to feel like I was a 100 percent but knowing how I feel, I definitely wasn’t,” Amundson said after a workout with teammates. “That’s difficult when you want to play and play at a high level and your body just won’t let you. With the finger and the back, it was a tough season. Obviously I want to stay healthy this year….
“(The lockout is) unfortunate, everybody wants to play,” Amundson said. “In my case, coming off a year I didn’t perform like I wanted, and I was injured a lot of the season, I really feel like I have unfinished business.” I want to get out there and show everybody up there in the Bay what I can do. I’m excited to start playing, whenever that may be.”
The Warriors are not exactly impressive across the front line and new coach Mark Jackson is going to need more out of David Lee, something out of Andris Biedrins, and he’s going to need Amundson to be an impact energy guy off the bench again. Like he was in Phoenix. At least this year it seems like his body may let him.
This is a huge season — a contract kind of season of sorts — for Noah Vonleh in Portland. The team has an option on him next season (the third of his rookie deal), and to impress people he is going to have to earn minutes at the four in front of Al-Farouq Aminu, Moe Harkless, Meyers Leonard, and Ed Davis.
The Blazers have high hopes for Vonleh, he was a central part of the Nicolas Batum trade with Charlotte. However, watching Vonleh at Summer League — 12 points a game on 46.3 percent shooting, 8.8 rebounds a game in more than 30 minutes a night — he didn’t show the development anyone had hoped to see. He should have dominated at that level. He didn’t.
Now there another injury setback for him.
He should be good to go around the start of training camp at the end of September.
But he can’t afford a slow start in training camp (that set him back his rookie season). He needs to show what he can do from day one, or Portland is going to move on without him.
The Boston Celtics have 16 players with guaranteed contracts and NBA rules allow just 15 players on the roster. Which means if a trade doesn’t happen by the start of the season, someone is going to get cut but still paid for the season.
This doesn’t change that.
The Celtics signed guard John Holland last season (he played a total of one playoff minute for them), but the deal was not guaranteed for this season. From Shams Charania of The Vertical at Yahoo Sports.
This was expected. Holland, who has played on the Puerto Rican national team, will be looking for a new gig either in the D-League or overseas (it’s unlikely an NBA team offers more than a training camp invite) By the end of training camp, the Celtics also likely will cut second-round pick Ben Bentil of Providence, who had a partially guaranteed deal.
That will leave R.J. Hunter and James Young battling it out for the final roster spot in Boston.
Ty Lawson is headed to the Kings, as first reported on Monday. The team made the move official on Wednesday with a press release, and USA Today‘s Sam Amick offers up another important piece of information: Lawson’s deal is not guaranteed, making it essentially a make-good camp invite.
It’s staggering how Lawson went from a borderline All-Star level point guard in 2012-13 to signing a non-guaranteed one-year deal with a lottery team three years later. His off-the-court issues have contributed to that, and he didn’t produce last season in Houston and Indiana. Still, he should have a pretty good chance of making the Kings’ roster, with Seth Curry and Rajon Rondo gone and Darren Collison their only proven point guard. They need depth there.
When Ben Simmons declared for the NBA draft this spring, he signed with LeBron James‘ Klutch Sports group for representation. That association would appear to have its advantages for the No. 1 overall pick, including the opportunity to work out with James and Dwyane Wade during the offseason. Wade posted a group photo on Instagram on Wednesday afternoon:
Also, it’s pretty staggering to see Simmons standing next to James and realizing that he’s bigger and taller.