Atlanta Hawks v Chicago Bulls - Game Two

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

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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 NBA.com. 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 NBA.com. 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 Sportando.net) 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.

LaMarcus Aldridge, Manu Ginobili hustling saves lead to Spurs bucket (VIDEO)

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That’s about the most Spurs play ever.

During the third quarter of San Antonio’s win over Washington Friday night, LaMarcus Aldridge saved the ball from going out-of-bounds on the baseline, he threw it out high to Manu Ginobili, who had to leap and save it from going into the backcourt. Two hustle plays. From there the Spurs whipped the ball around the perimeter, and it ended up back to Aldridge on the baseline, where he nailed the 12-foot jumper.

Eventually, the Spurs would get a Kawhi Leonard jumper to give them the victory.

LeBron on Cavs’ three-game losing streak: “We got to get out of the honeymoon stage”

Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James wipes his face as he looks down after guard Kyrie Irving missed a shot during the second half of the team's NBA basketball game against the Chicago Bulls on Friday, Dec. 2, 2016, in Chicago. The Bulls won 111-105. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)
Associated Press
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For a team that is 13-5 and atop the Eastern Conference standings, the Cleveland Cavaliers haven’t been their intimidating selves consistently this season. There have been flashes during a 13-2 start, but mostly they win on talent, or when they flip the switch for a half, but they haven’t looked like a tested team working on building good habits through the first quarter of the NBA season. They have an elite offense, but their defense is surrendering 105.1 points per 100 possessions, 20th in the league.

It’s been worse the last four games. The Cavaliers had to come from behind to beat the Sixers, then got blown out by the Bucks and Clippers. Friday night, Cleveland lost to Chicago, giving the Cavs a three-game losing streak, and LeBron James had enough. He sent a message to his team through the media (from the Associated Press):

“We got to get out of the honeymoon stage,” James said. “You got to play the game, the right way. We’ve got to battle every night like we ain’t won nothing. Last year is last year. After ring night is over with, now it’s a new season and everybody is gunning for us every night and we have to understand that. The honeymoon stage is over. It’s time to play some real ball and be physical, especially in the trenches. Giving up 78 points (in the paint) is ridiculous. We’ve got to man up. Everybody.”

The Cavaliers would be far from the first team to have a championship hangover, and considering the five-decade title drought in Cleveland before that win we should have expected one of those “I can’t get off the couch, I’m just going to lay here and watch golf all day” kind of hangovers. As Gregg Popovich has said before, its human nature to let up after a big win.

However, the blowout loss at the hands of the Clippers Thursday — the only title contending team the Cavs have faced this season — should be a wake-up call. The fact is the Cavaliers are still playing well enough to beat everyone in the East, but their real tests come in the form of the Warriors/Clippers/Spurs out West. Right now it’s hard to picture the inconsistent defense of the Cavaliers lifting them past any of those teams in four out of seven games.

LeBron has been to six-straight Finals for a reason — he does not let up. And he’s going to have to shake this team out of its malaise to get them back to an elite standing.

It’s also the first week of December. It’s we’re having this same conversation the last week of March about the Cavaliers then it’s okay to start looking for the panic button in Cleveland. For now, trust LeBron to be the leader this team needs. Calling them out was just step one.

 

James Harden scores 20 in Rockets’ runaway win over Denver 128-110

Houston Rockets guard James Harden brings the ball upcourt against the Denver Nuggets in the first half of an NBA basketball game late Friday, Dec. 2, 2016, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
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DENVER (AP) — James Harden scored 20 points and the Houston Rockets led from start to finish in beating the Denver Nuggets 128-110 on Friday night.

Eric Gordon and Ryan Anderson had 18 points each and Sam Dekkar added 17 points for Houston, which completed an impressive road back-to-back sweep that began with its 132-127 win over Golden State in double overtime on Thursday.

Wilson Chandler had 24 points to lead the Nuggets, who saw their three-game winning streak against the Rockets come to an end. The Nuggets have lost four of their last five and fell to 3-7 this season at home, the high-altitude venue they once routinely dominated.

Up by 10 points at halftime, the Rockets took a 99-84 lead into the fourth quarter and kept the pressure on the rest of the way as part of a sharpshooting display that included converting 17 of 37 3-point attempts against a listless Nuggets defense. Denver made 9 of 30 from beyond the arc.

The Rockets took a 73-63 halftime lead over the Nuggets, who allowed a season high in points over the first two quarters by an opponent.

Houston led by as many as 15 points in the first half, hitting nine 3 pointers, including four by Anderson, to gain early separation with its highest scoring output over the first two quarters this season.

The lack of defensive urgency by Denver was epitomized by Gordon’s fastbreak layup at the halftime buzzer as he drove the length of the court virtually uncontested in the final 3 seconds of the period.

TIP-INS

Rockets: F Trevor Ariza left the game in the final minutes with a leg injury, apparently after coming down awkwardly while going for a rebound. … Houston has made at least 10 3-pointers in 19 consecutive games, the longest streak of its kind in league history. … Houston’s previous high for first-half points was 71 against the Los Angeles Lakers on Oct. 26. … Houston is 7-2 on the road since beginning the season 2-3.

Nuggets: C Nikola Jokic missed the game because of a sore left wrist. … G Gary Harris remains sidelined with a right foot injury. … G Will Barton returned from an ankle injury that sidelined him for the previous two games.

 

Jimmy Butler, Dwyane Wade lead Bulls to 111-105 win over Cavaliers

Cleveland Cavaliers' LeBron James, front left, talks with Chicago Bulls' Dwyane Wade before an NBA basketball game Friday, Dec. 2, 2016, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)
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CHICAGO (AP) — LeBron James wasn’t holding back.

Cleveland’s superstar had plenty to say after the Cavaliers gave up 78 points in the paint on the way to another loss. The condensed version was this: It’s time to start playing like a championship team again.

Jimmy Butler scored 26 points, Dwyane Wade had 24 and the Chicago Bulls beat James and the slumping Cavaliers 111-105 on Friday night.

Taj Gibson added a season-high 23 points and 11 rebounds for Chicago. Rajon Rondo had 15 points, 12 assists and 11 rebounds as the balanced Bulls handed the Cavaliers their third straight loss.

“We got to get out of the honeymoon stage,” James said. “You got to play the game, the right way. We’ve got to battle every night like we ain’t won nothing. Last year is last year. After ring night is over with, now it’s a new season and everybody is gunning for us every night and we have to understand that. The honeymoon stage is over. It’s time to play some real ball and be physical, especially in the trenches. Giving up 78 points (in the paint) is ridiculous. We’ve got to man up. Everybody.”

James manned up to the tune of 27 points and 13 assists, a championship-level performance on a night when he showed up dressed as a World Series champion: He arrived at the arena in a Cubs uniform to honor a World Series bet with buddy Wade.

Kyrie Irving added 20 points and eight assists, but the Cavaliers matched their longest losing streak in a year.

Chicago dominated Cleveland 78-60 in the paint, outrebounded the Cavaliers 49-33 and came out on top despite shooting 3 of 18 on 3-pointers. It was a big turnaround for the Bulls coming off a loss to the Lakers.

“I think we know what we’re capable of if we play basketball the right way and do what we’re supposed to do,” Butler said.

DOWN THE STRETCH

The Bulls used a strong third quarter to turn a one-point halftime deficit into an 88-80 lead. And they withstood several pushes in the fourth to knock off the defending NBA champions.

Kevin Love nailed a 3 to cut the lead to 103-99 with about 4 minutes left, but the Bulls hung on.

Wade drove for a layup to make it 107-101 with 2:39 remaining. Nikola Mirotic then stole the ball from James, leading to a putback basket for Wade.

Mirotic came up with another big play when he blocked a 3 by Irving with 1:11 left to cause a shot-clock violation.

KING CUB

James clearly wasn’t thrilled about having to wear a Chicago Cubs uniform after he rooted hard for his hometown Cleveland Indians in the World Series. But he was a man of his word, honoring the wager he made with Wade, his good friend and former Miami Heat teammate.

James wore a No. 23 Cubs jersey with his last name stitched across the back, a Cubs hat partially covered by a Cubbie-blue hoodie, pinstripe pants and long baseball socks. James’ uniform even had the 2016 World Series champions shoulder patch.

“I actually thought he looked good,” said Wade, who was waiting for James when he arrived at the arena and took a picture of his ex-teammate. “He actually did look like a baseball player.”

The two hugged before tipoff and had some playful moments during the game.

James patted Wade on the backside as they ran down the court together after he hit a tough fadeaway jumper over his pal in the third quarter. Wade returned the favor after burying a 3 in James’ face moments later.

TIP-INS

Cavaliers: G/F Mike Dunleavy Jr. missed his second consecutive game because of a concussion.

Bulls: Rondo’s triple-double was his first with the Bulls and the 29th of his career. … Butler has 12 straight games with 20 or more points. … With the Bulls playing four times in five days, coach Fred Hoiberg said Wade won’t travel to Dallas for Saturday’s game. … Hoiberg said F Doug McDermott (concussion) could be cleared for contact shortly and might practice with the D-League’s Windy City Bulls.