Bobcats Magic Basketball

Grizzlies, multiple teams in on J.J. Redick trade talks


There has never been anyone more likely to be moved at the deadline than J.J. Redick. It’s not that they don’t want to re-sign the free agent and keep him, it’s that contending teams that need a shooter will play more for him next summer than the Magic are willing to pay. So they need to get something for him now.

A lot of teams are in the Redick mix — because who doesn’t need a shooter? The latest is the Memphis Grizzlies, as tweeted by the well-connected Chris Vernon of 92.9 FM ESPN radio in Memphis. That would make a lot of sense for a Grizzlies team that wants to space the floor to give Zach Randolph and Marc Gasol room to operate.

But the Magic have options. And because of that their demands remain high, they want a first round pick back, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports.

Indiana, Milwaukee, Chicago and Minnesota have expressed interest in trading for Redick, but teams have been reluctant to give up a first-round pick and a good young player for a player who could turn into a rental for the rest of the season.

The Philadelphia 76ers could be a real possibility for Redick in free agency, sources told Yahoo! Sports. Redick has a strong relationship with coach Doug Collins, the father of his close friend and Duke assistant coach, Chris Collins.

The Bucks are interesting, they are a team that has put itself in the Josh Smith sweepstakes. The original report suggested that the idea was based around a Monta Ellis for Josh Smith trade (not sure why Atlanta would do that but there’s your rumor). If Ellis is moved for Smith or anyone then Redick makes sense for them as a fill in at the two and gives the Bucks a backcourt starter who shoots better than 40 percent.

But Chris Broussard of ESPN says Smith wants to play with Ellis and Jennings, forming a team of guys who will put up bricks from beyond 16 feet. Hard to see how that comes together, or how the Bucks could sign all three of those guys as free agents next summer. So again, not a lot of sense to me there, but the Bucks are being aggressive.

One way or another Redick will get moved, but the Magic can be a little patient (until Thursday) to see what the best offer will be.

Spurs to give Tim Duncan, Manu Ginobili Friday night off in Denver

Manu Ginobili, Harrison Barnes, Tim Duncan
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The Spurs are 12-3 and comfortably in second place in the West, they have the best defense in the NBA allowing just 93.8 points per 100 possessions, and they have a top-10 offense to go with it.

So, time to start making sure guys are rested.

That is the first night of a back-to-back, with former Spurs’ assistant coach Mike Budenholzer and his Atlanta Hawks coming to San Antonio on Saturday. Popovich is saving his two veterans for that game.

Duncan and Ginobili have looked like they found the fountain of youth this season. Duncan is taking on less of the offense but has been very efficient in those moments. Ginobili has the impact he did a few years back in his bench role.

What Gregg Popovich cares about is them playing like that come the postseason. So they will rest on Friday.

Brandon Armstrong impersonates Ray Allen (video)

2014 NBA Finals - Game Five
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Ray Allen is retired-ish, but he’ll always be running through screens – in our mind and in this video.

Celtics draft pick Marcus Thornton gets beer dumped on head during Australian game (video)

Marcus Thornton, Will Cherry

The Celtics drafted Marcus Thornton with No. 45 pick in the 2015 NBA draft. That essentially entitled him to the required tender – a one-year contract offer, surely unguaranteed at the minimum.

Thornton rejected that, which is almost always a mistake.

Rejecting the tender is a favor to the drafting team, which gets to keep the player’s exclusive rights for a year. If Thornton tries to join the NBA now, he’s stuck negotiating with only the Celtics.

By accepting the tender, the player typically gets one of two outcomes. He either plays on that contract and draws an NBA salary or he gets waived. But even getting waived is better than rejecting the tender, because at least the player becomes a free agent and can negotiate with any team.

Players who reject the tender go to another league and play for less money. In Thornton’s case, that mean Australia.

How’s that going?

(Almost) never reject the required tender as a second-round pick.

Byron Scott says they just have to get Kobe Bryant better looks

Kobe Bryant, Joe Johnson, Byron Scott

Kobe Bryant is averaging 15.2 points a game at age 37. It’s just taking him 16.4 shots per game to get there. After his 1-of-14 shooting performance against the Warriors the other night — with too much isolation and too many plays run just for him — there has been a lot of talk about his shot. With reason, this is his shot chart so far this season.

Kobe shotchart season

So what do the Lakers’ do? Get Kobe to shoot less and get the ball in the hands of the young stars they supposed to be developing more? Nah.

They just need to get Kobe better looks, Scott told the Los Angeles Times.

“I know his mentality is that he can still play in this league,” Scott said. “And we feel the same way….

“Obviously he’s struggling right now with his shot, and I think everybody can see that,” Scott said. “So it’s trying to get him in better position to be able to have an opportunity to knock those shots down on a consistent basis. That’s No. 1.

“I don’t know if it’s his legs. I don’t think so. Again, our conversations are pretty blunt. … He tells me when he is tired and he tells me when he’s not tired. And the last few days, he said he feels great. So, I don’t think it’s a matter of him being tired or his legs being tired. I think it’s a matter of his timing being a little off.”

Yes, how could it be his legs? It’s not like he’s a 37-year-old with more than 55,000 NBA minutes played, and coming off an Achilles rupture and major knee surgery.

Honestly, I hope the Lakers and Kobe find a balance soon, because they have become just hard to watch. And I don’t want Kobe to go out this way.