As of right now, Hedo Turkoglu is a member of the Orlando Magic, he is under contract to them. The question is will he be one when training camp starts.
He’s not going to play much in Orlando — they are a rebuilding team playing their young guys and the 13-year NBA veteran is not part of that future (nor that helpful when he does play). Last season he only got in 11 games for the Magic and averaged 2.9 points a game on 26.4 percent shooting when he did play (he also served a 20-game suspension for testing positive for a PED).
Turkoglu is owed $12 million this season although he could be bought out for $6 million before training camp. The question for the Magic is simple: Is Turkoglu the potential trade deadline asset (teams might take on his salary now to reduce future costs) worth $6 million?
If Orlando does buy out Turkoglu he will have comfortable landing spot in his native Turkey, reports Turkish basketball writer Can Pelister.
Turkoglu has said he wants to stay in the NBA and try to reach 1,000 games played, which would mean pretty much two full seasons. Let’s be kind and call that unlikely. More likely if the Magic buy him out his NBA career ends.
Fenerbahce Ulker is one of Europe’s better franchises; the Istanbul side is a regular part of the continent-wide EuroLeague. Hedo would be a returning hero there. It might be the best outcome for all involved.
Aaron Gordon may not have had the best dunk contest this year — apparently drones and dunks don’t mix well — but the guy can still get up and finish with the best in the league.
As he did on this alley-oop against Detroit.
Elfrid Payton had to throw a lob that would get over Andre Drummond, but how many guys in the league can get that high, reach back and finish that? Damn.
Former Atlanta Hawk Pero Antic is now playing for Turkish powerhouse Fenerbahce, in case you were not aware.
Fenerbahce was facing Anadolu Efes in a EuroLeague game, it was tight late and former NBA player Ekpe Udoh was at the free throw line for Fenerbahce. He missed his second shot, but the rebound caromed out-of-bounds off an Anadolu Efes player. Antic was pumped.
Maybe a little too pumped.
That was Nikola Kalinic, by the way, the guy Antic now owes dinner to. Kalinic would like the dinner more than the hug and kiss he got from Antic right after the play.
Also, Anadolu Efes held on to win 80-77.
(Hat tip to Ball Don’t Lie.)
The Lakers had been shopping Lou Williams around in the run-up to the trade deadline, the only question was would they get a first-round pick for him. Rumors around the league say that Houston had offered them one weeks before, it was on the table, but the Jim Buss/Mitch Kupchak front office held their cards close and hoped a better deal would come through.
While all that was going on James Harden decided to ease the process and did a little recruiting calling up Williams, the sixth-man guard told Shams Charania of The Vertical at Yahoo Sports.
“When James called, he asked me if I was interested in playing with them,” Williams told The Vertical. “I told him that I loved the Lakers, but James and them have a group that fit my personality, fit how I play. He said he was going to make it happen.”
Williams then laughed, sitting on the edge of a visiting court following a recent practice. “I’ve heard that before, so I didn’t really put stock into it,” Williams told The Vertical. “I guess James did put the word in, and the team made it happen.”
We all know what happened, Jeanie Buss removed her brother and Kupchak a few days before the trade deadline, Magic Johnston stepped in, called around, and quickly pulled the trigger on a trade that sent Williams to Houston (the Lakers also got Corey Brewer). Williams has averaged 14.5 points per game and had some strong performances with the Rockets, although he’s still finding his groove with the team on the court. Still, he’s been an upgrade for the Rockets’ bench.
Harden knew he would be, so he did his part to make sure it happened.
Shaquille O’Neal was as dominant a force as the NBA has ever seen.
His peak years came with the Lakers, when paired with Kobe Bryant one the court — and Phil Jackson manipulating both of them — they won three titles (and arguably would have had more if they stayed together). Those Lakers teams were one of the NBA’s great teams.
Friday night, the Lakers unveil Shaq’s statue at Staples Center. Take a look back at some of Shaq’s Lakers highlights.