Byron Scott

Byron Scott says he’s happy in Cleveland, not interested in Lakers


PHOENIX — Byron Scott’s obligatory pregame meeting with the media lasted less than three minutes on Friday, and none of the questions had anything to do with the game that night between his Cavaliers and the Suns.

As it is with almost everything of national interest in the NBA this season, it was all about the Lakers.

With the head coaching job in Los Angeles opening up earlier in the day, and with Scott having ties to the organization as a member of the Showtime championship teams of the 80s, it was expected that he’d be asked to give his thoughts on the situation.

“I think as one of the 30 in this league, you always feel bad when one of your counterparts gets let go,” Scott said. “And it’s a little surprising to me after just five games into the season. But I was told a long time ago that when you get hired, you get hired to get fired in this league. And that’s just the NBA, that’s just the life that we’ve chosen.

“Mike will definitely bounce back on his feet. He’s a good coach and a good guy, so he’ll be fine.”

Scott mentioned the fact that the axe dropped just five games in as being surprising, but also reminded us how things ended for him with the Hornets back in 2009.

“Only thing I can compare it to is I got fired nine games into the season in New Orleans, so maybe that’s pretty close to it,” he said.

The next logical question was whether or not Scott would have any interest in the job. And while he didn’t come out and say “absolutely not,” his answer seemed genuine and sincere when he mentioned how much he enjoys this young Cavaliers team — and how maybe, the time might be right to try to gain some additional job security.

“As I stated this summer, and I made perfectly clear, I am perfectly happy here in Cleveland,” Scott said. “I love what we’re building, and love what we’re doing. This might be a good time to ask [Cavs owner Dan Gilbert] if I can get another four-year extension.

“With the young guys we have and the draft picks we have coming, I want four more years after my contract’s up. It might be a good time to start politicking for that.”

PBT Extra bold prediction: Is this Andrew Wiggins’ breakout season?

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Minnesota is going to be entertaining to watch this season. A healthy Ricky Rubio (hopefully) dishing at the point, Karl-Anthony Towns is already a high-IQ passer, and bench players such as Shabazz Muhammad and Adreian Payne have shown some skills.

Then there’s Andrew Wiggins. The reigning Rookie of the Year developed quickly last season — particularly his jump shot — and he should make a big leap this season. He’s going to dunk on people and end up in a lot of highlight packages while putting up a lot of points.

Enough to set the Minnesota Timberwolves single game scoring record, currently held at 52 by Mo Williams? That’s the question for this PBT Extra with Jenna Corrado.

Derrick Rose being back for start of season in question

Fred Hoiberg, Derrick Rose
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The Bulls have said Derrick Rose is about a week away from returning after suffering a facial fracture this preseason.

The start of the NBA season is two weeks from today (Oct. 27).

So Rose will be ready to go when the Bulls start their season that first night against Cleveland, right? Don’t bet on it, says Vincent Goodwill of, quoting coach Fred Hoiberg.

The opening night projection for a Derrick Rose return is a bit murky at this point, as the Bulls are taking a cautious approach to his recovery with Fred Hoiberg essentially ruling him out for the rest of the preseason.

“Most likely (out for the preseason),” Hoiberg said….

In fact, it wouldn’t be surprising to see Rose sit out the first handful of games, as the Bulls start the season with a three-game in four-night stretch starting Oct. 27 against the Cleveland Cavaliers, which is in two weeks.

“That will be in consideration, sure,” Hoiberg said. “We gotta make sure, he really hasn’t done anything and that will be a good two or three weeks where he has total inactivity, so just to throw him back out there going 100 percent with his speed and everything, you just don’t want to take any risks, chances, where it could be a lingering issue.”

Just what TNT and the NBA hoped for with an opening night Bulls vs. Cavaliers showcase: Kirk Hinrich vs. Mo Williams. (Don’t forget Kyrie Irving will miss the start of the season recovering from his knee surgery.)

Of course, this is the smart play for the Bulls who need to be thinking about getting Rose fully healthy and focusing on what condition he will be come April 27, not Oct. 27.

And of course, a lot of Bulls fans who are down on Rose will slam him for this. Even though the injury was a freak accident and the team is right to be patient.

Rose could play opening night, if he gets back to practice next week and can get closer to basketball shape. But I wouldn’t bet on it.