Kevin Durant, other players get serious about Europe now


Deron Williams (playing in Turkey) and J.R. Smith (China) look pretty smart right about now, don’t they?

Now, with the NBA labor talks at the point where the players’ union is dissolving and the chances for an NBA season look bleak, other players want to be smart.

A number of players have started talking about going overseas now and you can bet a whole lot more will be saying the same thing in the next 48 hours. Star players will find a market — there is always room for special talents — but with most European teams having their rosters set, there will be a lot less room than most players and agents think.

Kevin Durant’s agent, Aaron Goodwin, has been in more serious negotiations with a number of European teams over the past week, but that is going to broaden now, reports Marc Stein of ESPN on twitter.

Source close to Durant says Thunder star will now widen his net and talk to more teams beyond Valencia, BBC Bayreuth and Maccabi Tel Aviv

Durant is one of the five best players walking the planet today, so there is always room to add a guy like that to your team. It’s going to be harder for others. Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo tweeted some names getting serious about overseas.

Octagon’s already engaged w/ several European teams about sending clients Rudy Gay, Stephen Curry and Wesley Matthews overseas, source says.

The guys who might find it more difficult are guys like Darren Collison, the Pacers point guard who tells Mike Wells of the Indy Star he is seriously considering going overseas. Collison is a fine player, but while a European team might be willing to toy with chemistry to bring in Durant or Gay, Collison is not an irreplaceable talent.

But expect pretty much every player still stateside to start talking about Europe in the next few days.

Dwight Howard played through torn MCL and meniscus in playoffs

Dwight Howard
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Dwight Howard hasn’t exactly been healthy in recent years. He missed half of last season with various injuries, including a two-month stretch from January to March after undergoing a knee procedure. On Thursday, he told a Houston radio station that the knee problems continued after that, and he had torn ligaments and cartilage during the Rockets’ Western Conference Finals series against the Warriors:

It’s a little alarming that we didn’t hear about this until now. Sometimes these injuries can heal without surgery, but Howard can become a free agent next summer, so you would think he would want to get any lingering issues addressed ahead of time. Considering his age (he’ll be 30 in December) and his injury history, this isn’t a great sign. A healthy Howard is the difference between the Rockets being a legitimate title contender and an als0-ran, so hopefully these problems are behind him and he can stay healthy this season.

Report: Trevor Booker suspended one game for Hibbert altercation

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On Tuesday night, Jazz big man Trevor Booker was ejected from a preseason game against the Lakers for taking a swing at Roy Hibbert during a scrap.

Now, Yahoo’s Adrian Wojnarowski reports that Booker will be suspended one game for the hit, meaning he’ll miss the Jazz’ October 28 season opener against the Pistons:

Considering he was already ejected, a one-game suspension seems about right.