When the Cavaliers traded for Antawn Jamison, it was supposed to be the move that brought them a championship, the final piece of the puzzle for LeBron James to bring a title to Cleveland. Instead, Jamison never showed the ability he had when he was younger, couldn’t adjust to the system fast enough, and had his tail kicked in by Kevin Garnett. Then he was a big contract on a losing team after LeBron journeyed to the center of his ego down in Miami. For two years he’s been the biggest name (at least until two weeks into this season when it became clear Kyrie Irving is the mother freaking truth) in Cleveland, a low-efficiency scorer that most Cavs fans have been frustrated with, from a usage and production standpoint.
But he’s played well overall. He’s contributed. The Cavaliers have hung around the 8th spot in the East for most of the season, and Jamison has been a big part of that. And Jamison has been a benefit to the Cavs’ culture. He’s a locker room leader and someone to help mentor the younger players. He’s taken an active role in mentoring Tristan Thompson, something he was under no obligation to do.
And as much as the Cavaliers rightfully shopped him at the trade deadline, they didn’t move his expiring contract. Not only that, but The Morning Journal in Ohio reports that the Cavs could bring back Jamison next year for a lesser salary hit.
With that being said, it’s not totally out of the question that they re-sign Jamison to a cap-friendly contract starting around $5 million. The Cavs would have to be clear with the 6-foot-9, 235-pounder that they are committed to Tristan Thompson as being the starter at power forward next year.
If Jamison would agree to come off the bench and continue to mentor young players like Thompson, it wouldn’t be totally outlandish for him to return.
via NBA INSIDER: Cavs would welcome back Jamison – morningjournal.com.
Jamison might get some bigger offers from contenders. He might get an offer from a team looking to give him slightly more for what he did in Cleveland this year. But him finishing his career in the relative quiet of Cleveland might be a great situation for him. It does show you that there’s value to players beyond shots and rebounds. And if the Cavs were to eventually win a title, Jamison is one of those guys who really deserve it for the upstanding way he’s handled his career.
As of tomorrow, training camps around the league open, and all the focus goes to the 2016-17 season.
For fun, let’s look back one more time at last season — the 50 top circus shots of last season.
Stephen Curry driving the lane and throwing up prayers once he draws contact (and hitting them), there is Russell Westbrook throwing the inbounds pass off an opponent’s back, and so much more. Enjoy. Then let’s get on with next season.
Kevin Garnett intimidates people. In the machismo-fueled world of professional sports nobody comfortably admits they were intimidated, but in the wake of Garnett announcing his retirement, a number of players stepped forward to say exactly that. And that KG trashed talked them fearlessly.
Oklahoma City’s Steven Adams found a way to avoid that — tell KG he didn’t speak English.
Adams was lucky, KG had a reputation for going harder at foreign-born players with his trash talk and intimidation. Then again Adams is not the kind of guy prone to be intimidated.
Athletes are injecting themselves into the needed national conversation about race, violence, and policing in this nation. That has taken some very public forms, including LeBron James, Chris Paul, Dwyane Wade and Carmelo Anthony speaking at the ESPYs, and Colin Kaepernick taking a knee during the national anthem and leading others to do so. Some NBA players likely will follow Kaepernick’s lead.
Pistons coach/GM Stan Van Gundy likes seeing players speak out.
A couple of his Detroit players — Reggie Jackson and Marcus Morris — said they backed the 49ers quarterback. Here is what the never shy Van Gundy said about all of it, via Vincent Ellis of the Detroit Free Press.
“I’m encouraged by the fact of what some of those guys stood up and did at the ESPYs and had a conversation,” Van Gundy said. “I’m really proud of the fact that we have guys that not only see the problem, but want to try to do something about it…
“To me, in some ways, (police brutality is) just the most visible to focus on and it goes to deeper inequities in our criminal justice system, our education system so there’s so much to focus on,” Van Gundy said. “I think it’s great that we have players that want to be part of that conversation, and a lot of players that want to go beyond the conversation and be part of the solution.”
Van Gundy has been telling his players part of that solution is to vote.
The players union and NBA sent out a release saying they wanted to work together to create positive change, but details are still vague on what that might be. The only thing we know for sure as we head into the NBA season — with as divided a nation and election as anyone can remember as a backdrop — is that some NBA players are going to try and keep the conversation going.
It was the last game of the group stage of the 2000 Olympic basketball tournament at the Sydney Olympics, the USA was taking on France, another USA win on its way to another gold medal.
But what we all remember is this one play — Vince Carter dunking over the 7’2″ French center Frederic Weis.
Best. Dunk. Ever.
Weis was never the same.
In an impressive career — two-time All-NBA, eight-time All-Star, hours and hours of crazy highlights — this is always going to be the highlight at the top of the list. So we will use the anniversary of this dunk to look at it one more time.
Hat tip to nitramy at NBA Reddit.