Andre Miller traded to Wizards, who surrender Jan Veseley (to Nuggets) and Eric Maynor (to 76ers)

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For any teams passively waiting an Andre Miller buyout, tough luck.

The Wizards swiped in to grab him before he could hit free agency.

Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports:

CSNWashington.com has now confirmed this trade.

The Wizards remain all in for the 2014 playoffs, and this should help that cause. They desperately needed to upgrade their backup point guard spot. Washington has a net rating of –11.7 when John Wall sits, and Miller should stop the bleeding.

After the season, the Wizards can buy out Miller for $2 million, which is less than Maynor’s 2014-15 player option ($2,106,720). So, the deal clears future flexibility too, though relinquishing two second rounders is a decent cost for a player who probably would have been bought out if not traded today. Then again, what were the chances Miller would have signed with the Wizards? To upgraded, they needed to act, and they did.

The Nuggets unloaded a malcontent for pretty great value. Vesely, in his third year, is an extreme longshot to ever live up to his draft status (No. 6 overall in 2011). He just hasn’t figured out how to play at this level. But he’s athletic enough to still possess a reasonably high upside. Denver can take a stab at developing for half a season and then go from there when Veseley becomes a free agent this summer. That definitely beats paying Miller to go away.

The 76ers’ plan is transparent. In exchange for accepting Maynor, they got two draft choices for their trouble. Sam Hinkie, at this stage in the rebuilding process, is all about acquiring assets. Philadelphia is loading up on picks to either acquire young players for more tanking or parlay them into something. Not a bad plan.

Really, all three teams come out ahead toward their objectives – though the 76ers and Nuggets were aided by the mediocre Wizards being as desperate to win now as a contending team.

Update: Maybe the Wizards fared a little better and the Nuggets a little worse than originally reported:

If the Wizards traded only one second rounder, they certainly look less desperate to win this season. One second rounder is right in line with Miller’s value.

The Nuggets go from having it all in this trade to sacrificing a pick to save money and gain a little flexibility. That’s not necessarily a bad move on their part, but the deal can no longer be viewed as a total win for them.

Remembering Notre Dame, Laker legend Tommy “the hawk” Hawkins

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Tommy Hawkins passed away recently at the age of 80.

The former NBA player was the first black athlete to earn All-America honors in basketball at Notre Dame (he still holds the school’s total rebounds record), was drafted in the first round, and went on to have a 10-year NBA career playing for the Minneapolis/Los Angeles Lakers as well as the Cincinnati Royals. Los Angeles fans may also remember him as the long time director of communications for the Los Angeles Dodgers after his playing days ended.

The NBA put together this well done video look back at Hawkins’ career.

Celtics’ Brad Stevens said early September tests will show if Thomas ready for camp

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Isaiah Thomas said he expects to be ready for the Celtics’ training camp next month. The guard’s All-NBA season came to an early end in the playoffs when he aggravated a labral tear in his right hip initially suffered back in March. At least the injury did not require surgery.

Players are also about the worst judges of when they will recover from an injury. They pretty much all think they are invincible and will be healthy faster than doctors predict.

Coaches tend to be more pragmatic. Take Boston’s Brad Stevens, who told Chris Mannix on The Vertical Podcast that tests in a couple of weeks will show if Thomas is ready for camp.

“He has another follow-up and another scan in the early part of September. Obviously, it’s been a lot of appropriate rest, a lot of rehab. There have been some good strides here certainly in the last month or few weeks, but we’re not going to know that until after that early September timeframe.”

The Celtics are understandably going to be cautious with Thomas, while Thomas wants to prove he is healthy and has no ill effects from the injury as he enters a contract year (one where he expects to get PAID). Also, the Celtics could use him in camp as they start to figure out how he and Gordon Hayward can share playmaking duties.

Still, from the outset, the timelines have suggested he should be ready for camp in late September. Coaches are just cautious on these things by nature.

Allen Iverson predicts LeBron James will win MVP

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LeBron James has four NBA MVP trophies in his case. (Does he keep that case in his home in Akron or the one in Los Angeles… that’s a question for another day.) Only Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (six) and Michael Jordan (five) have more.

Could LeBron James add a fifth to his case this season?

Allen Iverson said yes at last weekend’s Big3 playoffs in Seattle.

LeBron was fourth in preseason odds to win the MVP at 15/2, behind Russell Westbrook, Kevin Durant, and Kawhi Leonard.

To me, LeBron could be a good bet. If/when Kyrie Irving is traded, the chances of LeBron getting the MVP go up. If LeBron puts up impressive numbers (again) and leads a depleted Cavaliers team to a top two seed in the East, he is certainly going to be in consideration. And should be.

It’s a long season, and personally, I think you need to get midway through the season before seriously considering the year-end awards. But history says LeBron will be in the mix, and Allen Iverson could be proven prophetic.

Phoenix Suns with quality solar eclipse joke on Twitter

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With the cooler-than-I-expected solar eclipse on Monday came a lot of bad solar eclipse jokes on Twitter. Because that’s what Twitter does. Especially the NBA Twitterverse. We knew a lot of “where on the flat earth will Kyrie Irving watch the eclipse?” jokes were coming.

There were a couple of good ones, however.

Appropriately, the Phoenix Suns won the day.

One personal favorite here, an old meme that never goes out of style.