Thaddeus young

Thad Young well aware of possibility Sixers could trade him this season

11 Comments

Sixers head coach Brett Brown said earlier this week that his team — the guys who are actually healthy enough to play this season — consists of just six NBA players.

Three of those are veterans, and all are possible candidates to be traded before the season is through.

Thaddeus Young, Spencer Hawes, and Evan Turner are all players who could bring back further pieces for the franchise to use to rebuild. Since the team isn’t going anywhere this season, veteran leadership — even on a team with so many young players — is only valued to a certain point.

Young is well aware of the situation he’s in, and although he doesn’t want to leave Philadelphia, he’s prepared for the possibility that he may be traded before the end of the year.

From Christopher A. Vito of the Delaware County Daily Times:

Young and the Sixers are about to embark on their seventh season together. While nothing would please him more than to stay with the team that drafted him 12th overall in 2007, Young said a trade — whether it be before, during or after this season — wouldn’t surprise him.

“Right now, this is my family and this is my home for the past seven years. If that day comes, it comes,” Young said, following the Sixers’ practice at PCOM. “I can’t worry about it. I can’t stress myself out about it. You pack up. You have a family and have to go to the next city.

“I’d definitely be heartbroken, by the simple fact that this is the team that drafted me, this is the team I’ve been with, and this is the family I’ve always been with. I’ve been through the ups and downs, the goods and bads. It’ll be tough, but at the end of the day it’s a business.”

Young has three years and $28 million remaining on his contract, although he has an early termination option in year three that could allow him to opt out and become an unrestricted free agent.

It’s not exactly a bargain of a deal, but it is worth noting that Young had his best all-around statistical season last year. He started in all 76 of his appearances, and averaged 14.8 points and 7.5 rebounds while shooting over 53 percent from the field.

Young is also a two-way player who’s proven capable of being an above-average defender at times. There are teams out there that would love to add a player of his caliber, and there’s no question he might be made available this season — for the right combination of cap relief, draft picks, and young assets.

Glenn Robinson III does his best to salvage Dunk Contest, gets victory in process

4 Comments

NEW ORLEANS — This year’s NBA All-Star Dunk Contest was doomed to disappoint, it was never going to match last year’s epic battle. It started in a hole.

It never climbed out. Don’t take my word for it, check out what JaVale McGee thought.

Saturday was an underwhelming night of dunks punctuated by a couple of moments of brilliance.

The Pacers’ Glenn Robinson III had the most of those moments — which is why he won the event. His strong night started with his first dunk, which may well have been the best of the contest.

The final one from Robinson, the one that sealed the victory, may be the other best dunk of the competition — dunking over Paul George, the Pacers mascot, and a Pacers dancer.

“I originally planned for it just to be PG (Paul George),” Robinson said afterward. “I knew I had to bring out something special. We added the mascot and the cheerleader. I really just wanted to get up high and dunk that thing hard, man. My adrenaline was going. It felt like I was looking at the rim. All I knew was the crowd go crazy. I pointed like this because, man, everybody seemed to sleep on me, didn’t really think I was going to win this thing.”

Event favorite Aaron Gordon, who should have won a year ago, opened the contest with an innovative idea — a drone dunk — but he couldn’t execute it and there were a few attempts before he nailed it.

Gordon didn’t advance out of the first round, and his first dunk summed up the 2017 Dunk Contest — interesting ideas that didn’t quite pan out like planned. (To be fair, Gordon has been battling injuries recently, that may have thrown him off).

If it wasn’t going to be Gordon, a lot of people expected it to be the bouncy Suns forward Derrick Jones Jr. who won, and he reached the Finals in part thanks to this spectacular dunk that woke the Smoothie King Center up.

DeAndre Jordan was okay, but without Chris Paul throwing him lobs it didn’t quite feel the same. Jordan can dunk with such power in game, but we didn’t see that Saturday.

In the end, it was Gordon who was making the plays.

“I’m not really a known dunker,” Robinson said. “I practiced. I prepared. I know I’m a jumper. And like I said, I’m a guy that stays out of the way. But when it’s time to shine, that’s my thing. That’s what I wanted to do. I knew all along I had some things planned, and I just wanted to show the world.”

Glenn Robinson III wins underwhelming dunk contest on over-people, below-rim dunk (video)

2 Comments

NEW ORLEANS — Glenn Robinson III won the dunk contest with the second-best dunk of the night, going over a few people and under the rim — a narrow path to slamming victory.

It would’ve rated as the event’s best dunk if he were truly under the rim rather than somewhat in front of it. And he did have the best body of work to win the contest.

But the best single dunk was still by runner-up Derrick Jones Jr., who went between the legs on a pass off the side of the backboard.

NBA stars shoot threes to raise $500,000 for Sager Strong Foundation in touching moment

1 Comment

NEW ORLEANS — The spirit of Craig Sager is strong during All-Star weekend in The Big Easy and he’s going to get a spot in the Hall of Fame, deservedly so.

After Eric Gordon won the Three-Point Contest, he and the other finalists Kyrie Irving and Kemba Walker stayed on the court to shoot threes to raise money for the Sager Strong Foundation — they would shoot threes for a minute and for each make the foundation would get $10,000. Then they brought out help — Reggie Miller, James Harden, DeMar DeRozan, DJ Khaled, and others to knock down shots. That raised $130,000.

Stephen Curry tried to push that to $500,000, but it was Sager’s son that actually did it (with an assist from Shaquille O’Neal).

It was a touching moment for a great cause.

Derrick Jones Jr. catches pass off side of backboard, jams between-legs dunk (video)

2 Comments

NEW ORLEANS — With defending runner-up Aaron Gordon eliminated in the first round, Suns forward Derrick Jones Jr. might be our best hope to save the dunk contest.