From the Los Angeles Times:
“I’m not going to get into that stuff,” Howard said Friday in a quiet moment before the Lakers last to Sacramento, 103-98, in an exhibition game at Thomas and Mack Center.
“I’m happy that I’m here. This year is very important, and I’m looking forward to doing some great things here.”
via Lakers aren’t pushing it with Dwight Howard – latimes.com.
Well, that seems reasonable. I mean, it’s not like Dwight Howard spent over a year dominating the news cycle by constantly holding his team in limbo in an attempt to not only get his max contract which he was always going to get but to get it where he wanted to get it. It’s not like he had his coach fired along with his GM and ruined an entire year for his teammates while constantly changing his mind and ceaselessly leaking information to the pres through his people. That doesn’t sound like something Dwight would do.
Look, the only way he gets the most money is if he enters unrestricted free agency this summer (as he should have last summer) and then re-signs for the max with the Lakers. That’s what’s going to happen. But this whole “I don’t want to deal with that noise” just seems really disingenuous.
Everything LeBron James does and says gets magnified and scrutinized.
So when he put out this photo on Instagram standing shoulder-to-shoulder with Tristan Thompson and the caption “get it done” it seemed a message to the Cavaliers.
LeBron clarified that on Sunday, saying this has become a distraction, and the message was for both sides to bend, as reported by Dave McMenamin of ESPN and Chris Haynes of the Plain Dealer.
When Thompson didn’t sign the qualifying offer he surrendered a lot of leverage, the Cavaliers don’t have to raise their five-year, $80 million offer — but reportedly they still would, a little. Thompson and his agent Rich Paul have pushed for a max contract, but that’s not happening.
At some point, the two sides will come to an agreement. For the Cavaliers, this is a distraction, their star is unhappy with that, and ultimately if they are going to make a title run they need the energy and rebounding Thompson brings (even if it is just off the bench). For Thompson, he can’t make up a year of lost salary, he has to come in and start getting paid at some point.
The two sides will get it done. Eventually. Likely before the season tips off.
China has secured the ninth and final Olympic men’s basketball berth awarded this year.
China earned the bid to the 2016 Rio Games with a 78-67 win over the Philippines. 2016 first-round draft prospect Qi Zhou had 16 points and 14 rebounds, setting up the Olympics to be his big introduction to American fans.
Former NBA player Yi Jianlian won tournament MVP by averaging 16.7 points, 8.8 rebounds, 1.4 assists and 1.2 blocks per game.
This will be China’s ninth straight Olympic appearance.
The Philippines, who got 17 points from Andray Blatche in the final, will still go to an Olympic Qualifying Tournament next summer with a chance to reach Rio.