Report: Timberwolves to offer Brandon Roy two-year deal

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The Minnesota Timberwolves are a young team on the rise. They are a couple pieces away, but you can see a path for them the same way you saw a path three years ago for the Thunder.

Does Brandon Roy move them down that path?

According to ESPN 1150 the Timberwolves brass think so — KAHN! — and they are about to make him a two-year offer (they can’t do that right now, likely after July 11).

According to two league sources, the Wolves plan on making the three-time All-Star a two-year contract offer. The money is unknown….

While still a clear injury concern, he is training hard in his hometown of Seattle to make a comeback. Roy is free to sign anywhere at anytime, not held to the traditional NBA free agency rules.

Interesting. The money could sway things. I have two questions.

First, how does Roy — a three time All-Star and former Rookie of the Year — the point guard work into the system with Ricky Rubio? Does Roy serve as his backup point? Does he work off the ball? With a lot of teams I’d be more concerned about this, with the Timberwolves having Rick Adelman as coach I think they could find a fit in his corner offense.

The real gamble, especially with a two-year deal, is Roy and his knees. This is a guy amnestied and who retired because there is no cartilage left. That doesn’t suddenly grow back (even with a year off). He can look great in workouts, but how will he look at game 50 of the regular season? You have to limit his minutes and rest him, and even then, what about during the second round of the playoffs?

At the right money, it might be a good gamble for the Timberwolves. But it is a gamble, make no mistake.

Watch Pacers fan boo Paul George during introductions (video)

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Paul George – who told the Pacers he’d leave in free agency, prompting them to trade him to the Thunder – expected boos in his return to Indiana.

Pacers fans delivered.

They’ve also booed him every time he has touched the ball, which will certainly persist.

John Wall returns for Wizards-Grizzlies

AP Photo/Nick Wass
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WASHINGTON (AP) — Point guard John Wall was in the Washington Wizards’ lineup Wednesday night against the Memphis Grizzlies after missing nine games with a sore left knee.

Coach Scott Brooks said Wall would play in the mid-20-minute range, perhaps a bit more.

The Wizards (14-13), currently in first place in the Southeast Division, went 4-5 in Wall’s absence.

“He such a force offensively,” Brooks said of Wall. “He’s a two-way player and he’s one of the few guys in the league that can find open 3-point shooters going 100 miles an hour in transition.”

Wall, 27, is averaging 20.3 points and 9.2 assists per game.

Pacers president Kevin Pritchard likes tweets critical of Paul George trade

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Pacers general manager Kevin Pritchard was widely panned – including by me – for trading Paul George for Victor Oladipo and Domantas Sabonis.

Oops.

Oladipo and Sabonis are killing it while George has underwhelmed.

Upon George’s return to Indiana, Pritchard took the opportunity to gloat. The Pacers general manager recently liked these tweets (hat tip: Matt Ellentuck of SB Nation):

This is petty – and I love it. Pritchard earned the victory lap.

Report: Rival executives still expect Paul George to leave Thunder for Lakers

AP Photo/David Zalubowski
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Paul George has been pretty open about his plans.

He told plenty of people – including the Pacers – he planned to leave for the Lakers in the summer of 2018. Even after the Thunder traded for him, George spoke of the lure of playing for his hometown team.

Of course, George also left the door open to re-signing with Oklahoma City. He proclaimed he’d be dumb to leave if the Thunder reached the conference finals or upset the Warriors.

So far, Oklahoma City (12-14) doesn’t even look like a playoff lock, let alone a team capable of knocking off Golden State or reaching the conference finals. So, cue the inevitable speculation.

Sam Amick of USA Today:

Rival execs still expect Paul to head for the Lakers in free agency

Do these executives have inside information into George’s thinking, or are they just speculating based on already-available information? Some executives are incentivized to drum up the Lakers threat, because they want to trade for George themselves now. If these executives insist George will leave for Los Angeles regardless, they might pry him from Oklahoma City for less.

There’s also a theory George is hyping his desire to sign with the Lakers so a team would have to trade less for him. That got him to the Thunder for what looked like a meager return (but hasn’t been). It might get him to a more favorable situation before the trade deadline without hampering his next team long-term. Of course, this theory isn’t mutually exclusive with George actually signing in Los Angeles. It could just get him better options to choose from this summer.

Surely, the Thunder are trying to parse all this noise. If their season doesn’t turn around, they should explore flipping George rather than risk losing him for nothing next summer. But they should also be wary that he’ll bolt for Los Angeles at first opportunity just because rival executives predict it.