Los Angeles Clippers Paul reacts during their loss to the Memphis Grizzlies in Game 5 of their NBA Western Conference Quarterfinals basketball playoff series in Los Angeles

Thursday And-1 links: List of deals that have become official

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Here is our regular look around the NBA — links to stories worth reading and notes to check out (stuff that did not get its own post here at PBT) — done in bullet point form. Because bloggers love bullet points like they love going to Vegas for Summer League…

• Since the calendar flipped from Tuesday to Wednesday, a lot of the NBA deals that had been agreed to during the signing moratorium have become official with ink put to paper. We’ve been keeping tabs on them at PBT (as did Hoopshype), so here is a list of what we know so far (this list is likely missing a couple deals):

• Chris Paul signed with the Clippers for five-years, $107 million (he has a player option after four years).

• The Clippers also completed this three-team trade: Milwaukee signs then trades J.J. Redick to the Clippers; the Bucks get two second round picks (one from the Suns, one from the Clippers); then the Clippers trade Eric Bledsoe and Caron Butler to Phoenix for Jared Dudley.

• The Clippers also signed Darren Collison to back up CP3 and re-signed Matt Barnes and Ryan Hollins.

• The Miami Heat re-signed Chris Andersen.

• The Pacers re-signed forward David West and signed backup point CJ Watson.

• Detroit signed free agent forward Josh Smith.

• San Antonio re-signed Manu Ginobili.

• In a three-team trade, Golden State acquired Andre Iguodala from Denver and Kevin Murphy from Utah; the Jazz got Brandon Rush,  Richard Jefferson, Andris Biedrins and what they really wanted two first-round picks (2014 and 2017).

• Dallas signed Wayne Ellington and Israeli guard Gal Mekel.

• The Bulls signed Mike Dunleavy.

• Brooklyn re-signed Andray Blatche.

• Chicago re-signed Nazr Mohammed.

• The Washington Wizards signed draft picks Glen Rice Jr. and Otto Porter, plus inked deals with Eric Maynor, Martell Webster and Eric Maynor.

• The trade became official that sends Andrea Bargnani to New York for Quentin Richardson, Steve Novak, Marcus Camby and three second round picks.

• This three team Tyreke Evans trade went official: New Orleans sent  Terrel Harris and Robin Lopez to Portland, plus they sent Greivis Vasquez to Sacramento, for the draft rights to just drafted center Jeff Withey (Portland) and Evans (Sacramento).

• The Lakers re-signed Robert Sacre.

• The Knicks re-signed J.R. Smith and guard Pablo Prigioni.

• New Orleans (I’m partial to ‘Cans over Pellies if we are going to play with the new nickname) signed center Greg Stiemsma and re-signed  Al-Farouq Aminu.

•  The Trail Blazers inked Dorell Wright and just drafted Allen Crabbe.

• The Charlotte Bobcats signed free agent forward Al Jefferson. They also inked just signed draft pick Cody Zeller.

——

In some other news not with its own post on PBT:

• Nerlens Noel is going to wear No. 5 in Philly. Why? That’s how many teams passed over him in the draft.

• If you are wondering why the Noel trade is not official, Jrue Holiday (going to New Orleans) is on his honeymoon so he has not taken the team physical to make the trade official. We can cut him some slack on that one.

• In case you missed it, Ice Cube went on stage the night of Dwight Howard’s announcement and summed up the feelings of most Lakers fans pretty succinctly.

They are pretty pumped about Andre Iguodala in Golden State.

• Ty Lawson says the Nuggets are not going to take a step back next season.

• Tyreke Evans is good with being the sixth man in New Orleans.

• Former NBA player Duane Washington was sentenced to 60 days on a hit-and-run charge.

Larry Brown warns Sixers fans this rebuild is going to take a little time.

• Al Jefferson is excited about being in Charlotte, and not just because of the big paychecks.

• When the 1970 expansion draft came, the Cavaliers scouted it with NBA trading cards.

Golden State picked up the 2014-15 contract option for coach Mark Jackson.

• The NBA’s international outreach program Basketball without Borders this year will host camps for youth in Portugal, Argentina and South Africa, it was announced today by the National Basketball Association (NBA) and the International Basketball Federation (FIBA).

Damian Lillard added to Team USA Olympic roster pool

Damian Lillard
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If you’re looking for a point guard who can flat-out score the rock, you’ll be hard-pressed to find many better than Damian Lillard. The Trail Blazers’ guard is averaging 24.2 points and 7.3 assists per game, with an above-average true shooting percentage of 54.6 percent, and a very high usage rate of 30.9.

He’s the kind of guy who might have a place on the Team USA Roster.

Which is why USA Basketball has added him to the pool to be considered for the Rio Olympics summer. The reason for the change is both Lillard’s level of play this season, and the fact he called USA Basketball Chairman Jerry Colangelo to ask for a spot, as reported by Marc Spears of Yahoo Sports.

Lillard deserves consideration, but there are two key reasons he likely doesn’t make the team:

1) He is still a terrible defender.

2) The list of guards for the USA Roster is ridiculous: Stephen Curry, Chris Paul, Jimmy Butler, Kyrie Irving, James Harden, Klay Thompson, John Wall, and Russell Westbrook. And now Lillard. That’s 10 guys for likely five spots. It’s hard to see Lillard making that cut.

But he deserves consideration.

Kings co-owner Shaq: Vivek Ranadivé told me George Karl would coach rest of season

Shaquille O'Neal
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Kings general manager Vlade Divac said keeping George Karl as coach was right move “for now.”

How long is “for now”?

Shaquille O’Neal, a Kings minority owner, shares insight.

Sam Amick of USA Today:

This would mean a little more if Vivek Ranadivé weren’t prone to wild swings. Remember, the Kings said Tyrone Corbin would finish last season as coach before firing him for Karl.

Divac also said in November that Karl would coach the rest of the season, and that came up for debate fewer than three months later.

Shaq’s revelation is as likely to embarrass the Kings in a few weeks as it is to signal Karl’s job security.

Chauncey Billups explains why not every player wants to go home

Dallas Mavericks v Denver Nuggets
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LeBron James did it and shook up the NBA — he returned home to Cleveland. That has led to fantasies other players want to do the same thing: Kevin Durant back to Washington D.C.; DeMar DeRozan or Russell Westbrook back to Los Angeles; Blake Griffin back to Oklahoma. And the list goes on.

Not every player wants to do it.

Chauncey Billups did. Billups is a Denver guy who returned to play for the Nuggets — he gets his number retired Wednesday night in Detroit, a much-deserved honor — but in a letter to his young self at the Players’ Tribune Wednesday he explained that going home is fraught with peril.

“But in reality, playing at home as a 23-year-old professional is going to be less blessing and more curse. (There’s perception, again, for you.) It’s as simple as this: you’re just not going to be ready for Denver to be Your City. You’re going to think you’re ready — and they are too — but, trust me, you won’t be. You’re still going to be so young. You’re still going to be hanging out with your boys, doing your old thing. There are going to be those … hometown distractions. And those distractions will add up.”

“And you have to understand, Chaunce: It’s not just that you made it. It’s that your whole neighborhoodis going to feel like they made it. All of Park Hill is going to feel like they made it. And don’t get me wrong — that’s special. But at the wrong age, it can also be tough. It can be a lot to handle. And you’re going to be at that wrong age. You’re not going to be mature enough yet, or developed enough yet, to take on that mix of environments, those responsibilities, that role.

“You’re not going to be ready to lead.”

There are plenty of guys around the NBA who understand those distractions and how those can get in the way of off-season workouts, of time spent shoring up a weakness or developing a new shot, and how during the season they can be another thing that wears the body down.

Some guys can handle it. Some can’t.

Go read the entire letter from Billups. He talks about getting traded from the Celtics his rookie season, about playing for Mike D’Antoni, about how very rarely do veterans want to mentor younger players because they are fighting for the same piece of the pie.  Billups is honest.

And it’s great that Detroit is rewarding him as they should.

Did Marcus Thornton steal free throws from Rockets teammate Clint Capela?

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Leandro Barbosa – guarding Marcus Thornton and fighting through a Clint Capela screen – was called for a foul in the first quarter of last night’s Warriors-Rockets game.

Thornton went to the line.

Should he have? Or should Capela have?

Perhaps, Thornton and Barbosa tangled, but it certainly appeared the contact primarily occurred between Barbosa and Capela. It looks like Barbosa tries to ram through Capela.

It also appears Capela thought he drew the foul. Watch him step toward the line before seeing Thornton there and taking his spot along the paint.

So, why would Thornton step in? He’s making 89% of his free throws to Capela’s 40%.

I’m honestly surprised players don’t try this maneuver more often. Refs have so much to keep track of. The worst consequence would be the refs shooing away Thornton and bringing Capela to the line.

Thornton made both free throws, but it didn’t matter. Houston was playing Golden State, which rolled to a victory.