New York Knicks v Indiana Pacers - Game Three

J.R. Smith, Kenyon Martin miss Knicks practice due to illness


J.R. Smith and Kenyon Martin both missed the Knicks’ practice on Sunday, a day after the team’s Game 3 loss to the Pacers.

Smith was still recovering from the illness that caused him to miss shootaround on Saturday, and Martin was now under the weather, as well.

“Kenyon’s kind of coming down with [illness], too,” Knicks coach Mike Woodson said, via ESPN New York. “So we’ve got to be careful that this thing doesn’t spread, and other guys start dropping.”

Smith’s shooting woes continued with a 4-of-12 outing most recently, after struggling to shoot just 7-of-30 over the first two games of the series.

“We’ve just got to hope that over these next two days he can get some energy back because we desperately need his offense,” Woodson said.

With an extra day to recover before Tuesday’s Game 4, it’s likely both Smith and Martin will be in the lineup, although depending on how severe these illnesses are, their ability to be effective on the court will remain to be seen.

Smith was the recipient of the league’s Sixth Man of the Year award, and averaged 18.1 points, 5.3 rebounds, and 2.7 assists in 33.5 minutes per game during the regular season.

Mark Cuban suggests supplemental draft for undrafted free agents

Mark Cuban
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A lot of people around the NBA have ideas to improve the draft, free agency and the D-League, and Mavericks owner Mark Cuban has never been shy about sharing his. His latest idea seems pretty logical: a supplemental draft for undrafted free agents.

Via Hoops Rumors:

“I would have a supplemental draft every summer for undrafted free agents of the current and previous 3 years,” Cuban wrote in an email to Hoops Rumors. “If you are more than 3 years out you are not eligible and just a free agent.”

The supplemental draft would have two rounds, and teams would hold the rights to the players they select for two years, Cuban added. Players can opt out and choose not to make themselves eligible, but those who get picked would receive fully guaranteed minimum-salary contracts when they sign, according to Cuban’s proposal.

“That would make it fun a few weeks after the draft and pre-summer league,” Cuban wrote. “It would prevent some of the insanity that goes on to build summer league rosters.”

It’s an interesting proposition. Most undrafted players who sign during the summer don’t get guaranteed contracts, so when deciding to enter this supplemental draft, they would have to weigh the value of having guaranteed money versus getting to decide where they sign. It’s unlikely that anything like this could happen anytime soon, because of all the hoops to jump through to get the league and the players’ union to sign off on it, but it’s a worthwhile idea that deserves some consideration in the next CBA negotiations.

Kevin Love to practice with Cavs on Saturday

Kevin Love
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The Cavaliers’ training camp has so far been filled with bad news and uncertainty, from Tristan Thompson‘s continuing contract holdout to Iman Shumpert‘s wrist injury (which will sideline him for up to three months) to Kyrie Irving continuing to be limited. But here’s some good news: Kevin Love will fully participate in practice with the team on Saturday for the first time since suffering a shoulder injury in last year’s first-round series against the Celtics.

From’s Chris Haynes:

Head coach David Blatt announced on Wednesday that power forward Kevin Love will make his first full practice debut on Saturday. The three-time All-Star has been rehabbing ever since undergoing shoulder surgery in May.

“He’s coming along real nice,” Blatt said.

On Monday Love was cleared to participate in 3-on-3 basketball workouts. Prior, he was only allowed to do individual work that consisted of absorbing contact from a pad in the post.

It’s unclear when Love will be able to play in a game, but the fact that he’s been cleared to return to practice is undoubtedly a good sign for Cleveland, and there’s hope that he’ll be able to play on opening night against the Bulls on October 27. With all the bad breaks the Cavs have caught this summer, it’s nice to see some good injury news for once.