Hakeem Olajuwon’s such a popular guy. NBA Hall of Famer. Iconic center. And apparently every NBA player wants to work with him. Kobe Bryant worked with The Dream two years ago. Dwight Howard the past two summers. LeBron James recently.
Well, add one more to the list of people who want to get in line to see how the Dream Shake works. Bulls center Joakim Noah, the most offensively limited of the bunch, told BasketSession.com that he also wants to work with Olajuwon. As transcribed by HoopsHype:
Have you discussed things with Hakeem yet?
Joakim Noah: Not yet, but that’s something I would really like to do. Everybody knows that he has helped the guys who have come to work out with him tremendously. Just to be able to live this experience would be great. We’ll see later if it helps me or not, but at least I will have tried everything I could to get better.
via HoopsHype – NBA Rumors.
Noah’s offensive strength is mostly in putbacks and the occasional mid-range jumper. His hook shot is unreliable, but he’s got it. However, there is some gain to working with Olajuwon. Particularly, Olajuwon can teach Noah how to get a better feel for his opponent, and use footwork to get closer to the bucket. And as good as a defender as Noah is, Olajuwon can teach him quite a bit about defense as well.
It’s good to see Noah being proactive. The Bulls need another legitimate weapon, and Carlos Boozer’s only going to be … you know, Boozer-ish. Noah gives them the best chance at a legitimate weapon with upside. Even a little bit of improvement could make a huge impact on the Bulls’ offense, which, despite Derrick Rose’s brilliance, wasn’t gangbusters last season.
We’ll see if Hakeem’s got time in his busy schedule for the abrasive Broakim.
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.