And Team USA loses another potential big man for the roster.
Recent No. 1 pick Anthony Davis severely sprained his ankle in a workout for the Hornets, which leaves him very unlikely to be ready when USA Basketball opens training camp Friday (July 6) in Las Vegas and he is now out for the games, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports and the NBC Sports Network.
Sam Amick of Sports Illustrated added USA Basketball president Jerry Colangelo heard about the injury yesterday but didn’t know the severity of it at the time.
Apparently, pretty severe. And certainly the Hornets do not want to take any risks with their new face of the franchise. He should be fully recovered before the start of training camp, but whether he plays at Summer League may also be up in the air.
Team USA is really thin along the front line for the Olympics. Already Dwight Howard was out due to his back injury, LaMarcus Aldridge pulled out early due to injury, then last week Chris Bosh removed himself as he tries to recover from his abdominal injury suffered during the playoffs.
That leaves Tyson Chandler as the starting and only true center on the team. Expect to see Kevin Love get a lot of time at the five. It also means the special workout coach Mike Krzyzewski is having before the start of camp with Lamar Odom and Blake Griffin matters even more. No word on if a new big like DeMarcus Cousins or Roy Hibbert will be added to consideration for the team.
For most of the Olympic tournament going small with Love at the five and LeBron James at the four will be fine for Team USA. That whole “LeBron as power forward” thing overwhelmed NBA teams, no international teams will have an answer. But when Team USA runs into the world’s second best team, Spain (likely facing off for the gold medal) it will matter. Spain stars Marc and Pau Gasol and brings Serge Ibaka off the bench. They have real size with skill.
Team USA will also be without Derrick Rose, Dwyane Wade and Chauncey Billups do to injury.
In a separate note, young 76ers guard Jrue Holiday has been added to the USA Select team. That is the team invited to Team USA training camp as practice partners for the London-bound team. It is also where Team USA officials get a close look at guys they may want to play for Team USA in future tournaments.
The Nets went 20-62 then traded their best player (Brook Lopez) for a worse player (D'Angelo Russell). Brooklyn’s biggest free-agent signing this summer (Otto Porter) plays for the Wizards. Rondae Hollis-Jefferson and Caris LeVert are nice developmental pieces but hardly seem on the verge of breakthroughs.
Still, Nets guard Jeremy Lin expects big things next season.
He set expectations in an Instagram Live video (hat tip: AJ Neuharth-Keusch of USA Today):
We’re making the playoffs. I don’t care what anybody else says.
The Nets are on the right track given their asset constraints. Though worse than Lopez now, Russell – eight years younger and on a low-paying rookie-scale deal – is more valuable. Brooklyn made the favorable swap by absorbing Timofey Mozgov‘s awful contract, a wise use of assets considering the difficulty of attracting free agents. An aggressive offer sheet for Porter was a reasonable swing in that situation, as well.
But that’s all helpful in the long run. In the short term, the Nets are almost certainly stuck as lousy. Maybe they can sneak into the playoffs in a weak Eastern Conference, but even that is a huge longshot.
Not that Lin cares what I say.
When you think of Summer League basketball, sharp defensive rotations is not the first thing that comes to mind. Defense, in general, tends to be an after thought.
But there were some great blocks.
Here are the top 10 blocks from the Las Vegas Summer League. Enjoy the flashes of defense from Vegas.
MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) The Memphis Grizzlies have signed former Oregon forward Dillon Brooks, a second-round pick in last month’s NBA draft.
Shams Charania of Yahoo Sports:
Brooks was selected by the Houston Rockets with the 45th overall pick. The Grizzlies acquired him in exchange for a future second-round pick.
Brooks, 21, averaged 16.1 points, 3.2 rebounds and 2.7 assists as a junior at Oregon last season. He was named the Pac-12 player of the year and helped Oregon earn its first Final Four berth since 1939.
Carmelo Anthony was reportedly willing to waive his no-trade clause for the Rockets or Cavaliers. Cleveland never seemed overly interested, but Houston was. Anthony became set on the Rockets, even reportedly expecting a trade to Houston.
Then, Kyrie Irving requested a trade from the Cavs.
That has thrown everything for a loop. Maybe Cleveland is more keen on trading for Anthony now? The Knicks are reportedly interested in trading Anthony and draft picks for Irving.
But any deal still depends on Anthony’s approval, and it’s now unclear he’d still grant that for the Cavaliers.
Frank Isola of the New York Daily News:
However, a source close to Anthony said late Friday that the All Star forward is focused on getting a deal done with Houston.
Consider this another indication LeBron James will leave Cleveland next summer. Of course, Anthony might have other reasons for preferring Houston. But when reading tea leaves on LeBron’s future, this is a clue.
I doubt LeBron has completely decided his plan, and he hasn’t even necessarily shared his thinking with Anthony, a close friend. Remember, LeBron edited his coming-home essay while on a flight with an unknowing Dwyane Wade, another close friend. But it was one thing for LeBron to strand Wade in Miami, a desirable city where Wade was happy even before LeBron arrived. It’d be something else entirely for LeBron to ditch Anthony in Cleveland. If LeBron is considering leaving, maybe he’d tell Anthony to stay clear.
Anthony could also be operating without hearing directly from LeBron. But if LeBron’s friend believes LeBron might leave, that’d still say something (though obviously not as much).
Back to the possibility that Anthony prefers the Rockets for other reasons. What happens if New York and Cleveland agree to a trade? Does Anthony still hold out for his top choice? Or does he relent and accept what was once his second choice? For now, it seems as if he’s still angling for Houston and will cross other bridges if he reaches them.