Atlanta Hawks v Chicago Bulls - Game Two

NBA “Deal Day” moves and rumors (constantly updated)


Today is going to be the Black Friday Sales of the NBA — there will be deals happening fast here, there and everywhere. Just like at Wal*Mart, you might have GMs pepper spraying others to make sure they get the player they want.

It’s going to be hard to keep up with all the information, so this one post will have updates on everything that goes down. You’re going to read more details about a lot of them in other posts here at ProBasketballTalk, but this spot is your one-stop shopping — refresh this post and you will know what is going on as soon as we do. And watch out for Daryl Morey and the pepper spray.

11:19 pm: Clippers point guard Eric Bledsoe had surgery to repair a torn lateral meniscus and will be out at least another month. That means more Mo Williams minutes.

11:15 pm: LaMarcus Aldridge is going to to miss the first week of Blazers training camp due to an irregular heartbeat. He suffered from this during his rookie season but has been fine since then.

10:50 pm: David West is about to be a member of the Boston Celtics, according to David Aldridge at That’s an interesting choice — West is a power forward, the Celtics have one of those in Kevin Garnett. West is one of the best pick-and-pop forwards in the league, how he fits with Rajon Rondo is a question mark. But this is about one of the biggest name pickup the Celtics could make.

10:35 pm: Looks like the Knicks are finalizing a trade to send Ronny Turiaf to the Washington Wizards as part of their efforts to clear cap space for Tyson Chandler, according to the New York Post. Turiaf in Washington is interesting as he is the opposite of Andray Blatche and JaVale McGee — he’s not blessed with the best physical talent ever but his heart and effort are unquestionable.

9:45 pm: Is Metta World Peace (aka Ron Artest) the new Shawn Kemp? Lakers coach Mike Brown said World Peace was “obviously a little overweight.” Or, check out the quote from Artest himself:

Metta World Peace says he’s not in top shape. He thought season wouldn’t start until January, so he had “a little more martinis” in Nov.

9:05 pm: Vince Carter is headed to the Mavericks after being bought out by the Suns, according to Marc Stein at ESPN. As David Aldridge notes, he essentially takes over the DeShawn Stevenson role (with fewer tattoos).

8:53 pm: It was expected but now it is official — Tracy McGrady has signed with the Atlanta Hawks.

8:51 pm: Earl Watson was expected by many to sign with the Wizards (and back up John Wall), but he was popular in Utah and the Jazz figured out a way to bring him back for this season.

8:47 pm: Luis Scola and Kevin Martin were there for the first day of Rockets practice. Awk-ward.

8:32 pm: The Celtics have re-signed Jeff Green to a one-year contract, according to the Boston Globe. Most likely this is just the qualifying offer, but either way he will be a free agent next year. This year he will be key to the Celtics making any run at the title.

8:23 pm: Greg Oden has had another setback with his knee. This just makes me sad.

8:21 pm: The Magic are not going to file tampering charges against the Nets. Not yet, anyway.

7:56 pm: Tyson Chandler is going to the Knicks, but all the pieces were not in place for him to be signed Friday, so the Knicks were a bit shorthanded for their first day of practice.

7:52 pm: The Pacers have re-signed Jeff Foster to a one-year contract. Not surprising, but the Knicks and other teams had inquired.

7:39 pm: Kobe Bryant with the quote of the day, talking about Lamar Odom, Pau Gasol and the blown up Chris Paul trade.

“”They’ll get over it. Don’t win back to back by being soft emotionally.””

6:38 pm: Golden State has waived Jeremy Lin, the second year player from Harvard. I’d like to think he can land somewhere, some limitations but he’s a guy who could stick in the NBA if somebody lets him develop.

6:26 pm: Marcus Thornton’s deal with the Kings has been finalized and at a more logical four years, $33 million according to Sports Illustrated. This was first leaked deal was five years and $40 million, which seemed steeo

6:13 pm: As expected, the Lakers have inked three-point specialist Jason Kapono to a one year deal for the veterans’ minimum (just more than $1 million, in this case).

5:56 pm: Kyrie Irving, the top pick in the last NBA draft, has inked his deal with the Cleveland Cavaliers. He’s going to get thrown into the fire to learn the hard way this season.

5:44 pm: The Sixers have agreed to a five-year, $43 million dollar deal to keep Thaddeus Young with the team, reports Kate Fagan of the Philadelphia Inquirer. That seems a fair price, good deal for both sides.

5:29 pm: Spurs rookie Kawhi Leonard has inked his deal, according to Sports Illustrated. Spurs fans are going to like this guy.

5:19 pm: The Pistons have bought out and let go of Rip Hamilton. This was not an amnesty move, this was a straight buyout. Rip is a free agent so start the Heat speculation in 3…2…1

If I were a betting man, I’d put my money on him becoming the Bulls new wing starter.

5:14 pm: Lamar Odom came late and left early from Lakers training camp Friday. He did not practice, but Pau Gasol did. (Odom came late and left early at a sporting event, that makes him a real Angelino.)

5:09 pm: Timberwolves guard Martell Webster is out indefinitely after having surgery to repair a herniated disk in his back. He had returned to play last season after a previous back surgery. Not good news for him.

5:05 pm: The Celtics have signed draftee E’Twaun Moore to a guaranteed deal. He will be a Celtic this year. Good team for a rookie to learn on if he pays attention.

4:52 pm: Gary Forbes is very close to a deal with Toronto, according to Yahoo.

4:51 pm: The Lakers, Hornets and Rockets are talking Chris Paul deal again, trying to find a way to “sweeten” it then resubmit it. And dare David Stern to veto it again.

4:19 pm: The Nets and Knicks are apparently in a competition to sign forward Shawne Williams. I don’t get it either.

4:09 pm: Chris Paul showed up for the first day of Hornets training camp today. Good for him. That was the right thing to do.

4:01 pm: In a surprise to nobody, the Suns waived Vince Carter on Friday. This was not an amnesty clause thing, this was business — Carter was owed $18 million on his deal but could be bought out for $4 million. Carter’s game isn’t worth the extra $14 million any more.

He is a free agent and may well land with the Miami Heat.

3:53 pm: That Marcus Thornton deal we talked about less than an hour ago (five years, $40 million with the Kings) apparently has hit a snag. How serious a snag remains to be seen, his agent told David Aldridge a deal would get done. But for now, snagged.

3:24: pm: Center Jeff Pendergraph, last seen as one of Portland’s injured big men, is expected to sign a two-year deal with the Pacers, reports Sam Amick at Sports Illustrated. That signing makes me think Jeff Foster is headed elsewhere.

3:22 pm: Rudy Fernandez continues to have trouble with his visa to return to the United States. He is expected to join the Mavericks on Monday.

3:21 pm: At age 38, Juwan Howard is coming back for one more season, this with the Heat, tweets Ira Winderman. If you see a lot of him on the court this season in anything other than mop-up duty, the Heat are in trouble.

3:19 pm: The Sixers are brining back veteran center Tony Battie for one more season.

3:12 pm: Thaddeus Young and the Sixers are apparently close to a deal that keeps the promising young forward in Philly. They should lock him up, he is part of the future of this team.

3:05 pm: The Sacramento Kings have reportedly signed Marcus Thornton for five years, $40 million. My gut reaction is $8 million a year is steep. They needed to lock him up, he shows promise and is just entering his third season, and he averaged 12.8 points per game last season… but $8 million a year? Maybe in a few years this is a steal. Maybe.

3:01 pm: Gilbert Arenas has been waived by the Orlando Magic under the league’s amnesty clause. In other news, the Pope remains Catholic.

He now enters a secondary waiver process where teams under the cap can bid to take over his deal at a reduced price. Don’t expect any takers, nobody wants him for three years.

2:16 pm: NBA teams will be able to dress 13 players — not the usual 12 — for the first part of the season, report Marc Stein of ESPN. Depth is going to matter in this condensed season, so the move makes some sense. Not that guy 13 is ever really going to see the court.

2:12 pm: Teams have until Dec. 16 to use the amnesty clause this year or it goes away until next year under the terms of the new CBA. Only about three or four players will get amnestied this year, but clock as started Cleveland so set Baron Davis free now.

2:06 pm: Golden State, after losing out on Tyson Chandler, is going to make an offer to Clippers restricted free agent DeAndre Jordan for around $10 million a year, reports Yahoo. The Clippers really want to bring back Jordan, but that price may be too rich for their blood.

2:01 pm: The Nets are going to offer Nene a four-year deal worth between $60 million and $65 million, reports Yahoo Sports. After flirting with a lot of teams Nene was expected to re-sign with Denver, but this could change that. The Nets made their move after the Magic started talking about filing tampering charges against them for talking to Dwight Howard, almost certainly killing that deal.

1:59 pm: The deal is finalized according to Yahoo — a signed-and-traded Glen Davis will be shipped to Orlando in exchange for Brandon Bass.

1:46 pm: Pau Gasol has arrived for the start of Lakers training camp. Lamar Odom has not.

Also, the Lakers are not going to join any legal action against the league over the trade, reports the Los Angeles Times.

1:34 pm: The live-in girlfriend of Jazz big man Al Jefferson was arrested after allegedly biting and hitting Jefferson, reports the Salt Lake Tribune.

1:11 pm: Warriors guard Charlie Bell was arrested after Thursday after showing up drunk to court for his DUI hearing.

1:02 pm: The Orlando Magic are considering filing tampering charges against two teams for trying to deal with Dwight Howard, according to That would be big. More to come on that.

1:27 pm: Dwight Howard has dropped agent Dan Fegan and his father will now represent him. Last year Howard left Aaron Goodwin as an agent to go to Fegan on the advice of family members (so that family members could play a larger role). I will tell you now this will end badly. Good agents do a lot more for a player and can provide a better picture of things than family members (who often are out for their own self interests).

12:13 pm: The Boston Celtics and Orlando Magic are talking a Glen Davis for Brandon Bass sign-and-trade deal, reports the Boston Herald.

11:59 am: Grant Hill has agreed to a one-year deal to return to the Phoenix Suns, tweets Paul Coro of the Arizona Republic. He has rejected the offer of the New York Knicks.

11:17 am: The Heat have re-signed three-point specialist James Jones to a three-year deal, reports ESPN.

11:33 am: The Phoenix Suns “improved their offer” — read: coughed up more money — to Grant Hill and now await his decision, reports the Arizona Republic. Hill is choosing between the Suns and the Knicks (or do you want to spend the winter in Phoenix or New York).

11:12 am: Mario Chalmers has agreed to a deal to return and be the point guard for the Miami Heat today, reports the New York Post. The Knicks might have made a run at him after they used the amnesty on Chauncey Billups, but the Heat would have matched any offer.

10:51 am: Shelden Williams is going to sign a one-year deal with the Nets, reports Yahoo.

10:47 am: Tyson Chandler will be signed by the New York Knicks today, the New York Times reports. Chauncey Billups will be waived and Ronny Turiaf will be traded to make room for this deal. It will put Billups into a secondary waiver where teams under the salary cap can bid for his services (and he cannot reject them if they have the winning bid).

10:37 am: The Cleveland Cavaliers are expected to waive and amnesty Baron Davis today, according to Yahoo Sports.. Not a huge shock, this is Kyrie Irving’s team now.

10:19 am: The Toronto Star is reporting (via that the Suns have agreed to send Mickael Pietrus to the Raptors in exchange for a conditional second round pick.

10:13 am: Brandon Roy is going to announce his retirement due to medical reasons (he has no cartilage in his knees), reports Chris Broussard of ESPN. Secondary reports say the decision is not yet final, but he is leaning toward retirement heading into a key meeting today. Much more to come on this, but I will always remember him in Game 4 against the Mavericks. That will be his encore, to me.

10:00 am: Teams cannot officially sign anybody until 2 p.m. Eastern, but to get us started here is a quick list of some of the things we expect to go down today:

• Shane Battier will sign a deal with the Miami Heat to join the big three there and provide some versatility — and high IQ hoops — to that team.

• Caron Butler is expected to sign a three-year deal with the Clippers for way more than he probably should get paid.

• Tracy McGrady will sign with the Hawks.

• Tayshaun Prince will sign a four-year deal to stay in Detroit.

• Jonas Jerebko also will stay with the Pistons.

• Mike Dunleavy will sign a two-year deal with the Bucks.

• Greg Oden will spend one more year on the Trail Blazers roster.

• Shannon Brown will sign a one-year, $3.5 million deal with the Phoenix Suns.

• Sebastian Telfair is expected to sign with the Suns as well.

• Eddy Curry is about to sign a deal with the Heat. Yes, we are serious, but it is a make-good contract or training camp.

• Roger Mason is likely to sign with the Wizards. how u?

• Jamal Magloire is about to sign with the Toronto Raptors (which would make him the first ever Canadian born Raptor).

• Earl Watson is expected to sign with the Wizards.

Report: Yi Jianlian has asked for release, will be waived by Lakers

Yi Jianlian, from China, newly acquired by the Los Angeles Lakers, poses in his new jersey during his introduction at the NBA basketball team's headquarters in El Segundo, Calif., Friday, Sept. 16, 2016. (AP Photo/Reed Saxon)
Leave a comment

On paper, Chinese center Yi Jianlian made a lot of sense for the Lakers, especially in Luke Walton’s system — he was the only floor spacing big on the roster. Watching Yi at the Olympics, it was easy to imagine it working out for him in the NBA this time around.

In practice, he was struggling to find a consistent role with the team. He had averaged less than 11 minutes a game in the preseason, shooting 35 percent overall and 16.7 percent from three. His defense wasn’t good, and he remains a player who doesn’t exactly have a high motor. With Julius Randle, Larry Nance, Timofey Mozgov, and Tarik Black, Yi wasn’t finding a consistent niche.

So he has asked out of his contract and the Lakers are going to oblige, reports Marc Stein of ESPN.

This likely means Thomas Robinson will earn the final Lakers’ roster spot.

Yi has a strong and lucrative international career to return to.

This was a smart gamble by the Lakers — he had about the most team-friendly contract imaginable, and this was not a big financial hit. It’s a little disappointing it didn’t work out, but both sides will move on.

Duncan-less Spurs eager for another run at NBA postseason

San Antonio Spurs guard Tony Parker (9), of France, talks with forward Kawhi Leonard during the second half of the team's preseason NBA basketball game against the Houston Rockets, Friday, Oct. 21, 2016, in San Antonio. (AP Photo/Darren Abate)
Associated Press
Leave a comment

SAN ANTONIO (AP) — The San Antonio Spurs responded to their most successful regular season in franchise history with the greatest turnover in Gregg Popovich’s two decades with the team.

Tim Duncan’s retirement played a large role in the reconstruction, but so did losing in six games to Oklahoma City in the Western Conference semifinals.

Duncan is gone along with veterans Boris Diaw, Matt Bonner and late-season additions Andre Miller and Kevin Martin. While San Antonio added another veteran in Pau Gasol, they also brought in a lot of youth and athleticism as they prepared for life without Duncan, the power forward who led the franchise to five NBA titles in 19 seasons.

“Right now we don’t know what we’re going to miss on the floor because we haven’t been through the season yet,” Spurs forward Kawhi Leonard said. “(But) just knowing he’s not here, his personality isn’t here. Jokes that he makes during practice, that’s the things I’m missing right now.”

Duncan will be with the team occasionally as an unofficial assistant coach, but San Antonio is placing the team squarely in Leonard’s hands. The 6-foot-7 forward finished second in MVP balloting after averaging a career-high 21.2 points and 6.8 rebounds last season. He also was named Defensive Player of the Year for the second straight season.

After spending his first five seasons adding a pull-up jumper and honing his 3-point shooting, Leonard spent this offseason working on something else: “Just becoming a leader. Just making sure I know what’s going on on the floor at every position. Just getting ready to get my mentality of just leading the group this year.”

Leonard’s evolution as a leader should be aided by Gasol. The 17-year veteran won two NBA championships while with the Los Angeles Lakers.

“One thing that makes me feel a little better with (Duncan’s) loss is Pau Gasol,” Popovich said. “He is a very intelligent man and he understands how to play and he’s played for a lot of good people. That’s going to help us in that loss, but having said that, it will take time to get all the new guys to understanding exactly how we play and who goes with whom.”

Gasol averaged 16.5 points and 11.0 rebounds for Chicago last season while earning his sixth All-Star appearance. Duncan averaged 8.6 points and 7.3 rebounds in the final season of a Hall of Fame career.

Gasol’s numbers will likely drop this season, though, as San Antonio will continue to develop around Leonard and LaMarcus Aldridge.

“It starts with me and L.A. first,” Leonard said. “If we win a championship, it’s going to be up to us to lead the group.”

The duo earned All-Star berths last season while leading San Antonio to a franchise-record 67 victories. But the Spurs dropped four of five games to the Thunder in the West semifinals and San Antonio knew changes were needed. The Spurs drafted 6-foot-5 point guard Dejounte Murray and brought in 2011 second-round pick Davis Bertans at forward along with signing 7-foot center Dewayne Dedmon along with David Lee.

Some other things to know about the Spurs, who open the season Tuesday night at Golden State:


Aldridge struggled to fit into the team’s offense in the first half of last season, but closed strongly to lead the team in rebounding and finish second in scoring. He said he was not bothered by reports San Antonio was willing to trade him.

“(Popovich is) a pretty direct person and this organization is first-class, so if that was the issue, I would have known way before the media knew,” Aldridge said. “So, I wasn’t worried about it at all.”


Point guard Tony Parker suffered a drop in scoring for his third straight season, which is a product of the team’s evolution rather than any decline in his game. The 6-foot-2 guard averaged 11.9 points last season, but he had a career-low 1.8 turnovers per game and shot 49 percent from the field. It was the third time in four seasons that Parker has shot 49 percent or better from the field. He also shot 42 percent on 3-pointers, marking the second straight season he has shot over 40 percent on 3s. Fellow veteran Manu Ginobili said he will not decide if this his last season until after it’s done.


After averaging 7.9 points and shooting 47 percent on 3-pointers in 15 games for Baskonia in the Euroleague last season, Bertans is averaging 5.4 points and shooting 31 percent on 3-pointers in five preseason games for the Spurs. He has astounded his teammates with his leaping ability especially after right ACL surgery twice in the past three years.

“I think in the second ACL they put something special in there,” Bertans said.


Dedmon is expected to be one of the team’s primary frontcourt reserves if he can stay on the court. The 7-footer has struggled with foul trouble in his career, averaging 2.1 fouls in just 13.1 minutes per game. He is averaging 3.2 fouls in five preseason games, including fouling out in 22 minutes in San Antonio’s preseason opener against Phoenix.


Gasol has stepping into Duncan’s spot in numerous ways, not just in the starting lineup. Gasol has taken Duncan’s spot standing next to Parker and Ginobili during the national anthem and is also handling tip-off duties.

Damian Lillard’s goal for season: Win MVP

Portland Trail Blazers guard Damian Lillard (0) poses for a photograph during NBA basketball media day in Portland, Ore., Monday, Sept. 26, 2016. (AP Photo/Steve Dykes)
Leave a comment

When the PBT staff made our predictions for MVP you saw some expected names — LeBron James, James Harden — and a smart pick off some people’s radar in Kawhi Leonard. Russell Westbrook was discussed as someone with a chance.

What about Damian Lillard? You know, the hip-hop star.

Lillard told a Jay Allen of Portland area Fox Sports Radio that’s his goal.

Lillard averaged 25.1 points and 6.8 assists per game last season, he is unquestionably a dynamic offensive force — he has a great pull up jumper and he can get to the rim and finish. Plus, he’s just entertaining to watch.

But MVP? That’s going to take more than numbers.

Portland won 44 games last season. The MVP almost always goes to the best player on a top two or three seed, meaning a team winning around 55 games or more. For Portland to add 10 wins or so and get Lillard noticed in the MVP race is going to be about defense — Portland was bottom 10 last season in defense and they need to be at least middle of the pack this time around. Which comes back to Lillard on some level, he’s often an overmatched defender and he can lose focus on that end. He’s gotten better over the years, but Lillard is going to have to lift up the Blazers defense, not just offense, to get in the MVP discussion.

I’m skeptical (of Lillard’s chances and the Trail Blazers taking a step forward), but we all underestimated Portland last season, too.

LeBron James says he can still win MVP with reduced workload, cites Stephen Curry

OAKLAND, CA - JUNE 02:  LeBron James #23 of the Cleveland Cavaliers with the ball against Stephen Curry #30 of the Golden State Warriors in the fourth quarter in Game 1 of the 2016 NBA Finals at ORACLE Arena on June 2, 2016 in Oakland, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)
Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images
1 Comment

The door is open for LeBron James to win a legacy-altering fifth MVP.

But his Cavaliers could also win another championship, leaving Cleveland coach Tyronn Lue planning to limit LeBron’s minutes in preparation of a long playoff run.

LeBron, via Dave McMenamin of ESPN

“No,” James said Saturday when asked if he was concerned that planned rest could affect his MVP case. “Because Steph played 31 minutes a game and he won the MVP.”

“Well, I’ve never set into a season saying I want to win MVP,” he said. “I’ve always thought of the season saying I want to be MVP for my team and it’s resulted in me getting four of them. So I’ve been available, for the most part, every night and I’ve been available on both sides of the floor. I’ve been healthy.

Curry won 2015 MVP while playing 32.7 minutes per game, the fewest by any MVP. He played 34.2 minutes per game last season, third-fewest by an MVP – ahead of just himself and 1978 Bill Walton, who played 33.3 minutes per game.

To contrast, LeBron has set career lows the last two seasons with 36.1 and 35.6 minutes per game. So, LeBron could get a reduced workload and still play more than Curry did.

But Curry, to some degree is an anomaly. He often sat late in games with his Warriors on the right side of blowouts. The Cavs aren’t good enough regularly rest LeBron as much in those situations.

It’s not that voters care directly about minutes. But the less LeBron plays, the lower his per-game averages will be and the less Cleveland will win. Those factors matter significantly.

LeBron can overcome that. He’s darned good, and there could be a push to reward him after the last two Finals have shown he’s still better than Curry when it matters most.

Playing fewer minutes per game won’t eliminate LeBron from the MVP race, not even close. But it will – and should – hurt his case. After all, MVP should reward the player who does the most to help his team win. MVP-caliber players don’t significantly help while sitting on the bench.