Charlotte made their gambit in throwing a max offer sheet at Gordon Hayward, but as they promised they would Utah matched it.
Charlotte turned to Plan B almost immediately: Marvin Williams.
The Hornets quickly got their man with a two-year, $14 million deal first reported by Marc Spears of Yahoo Sports.
Multiple outlets confirmed this, just waiting on word from the Hornets themselves.
My first thought is that price is a little steep, but it is a short deal in the ballpark of what he has made the past five NBA seasons.
Williams, the former No. 2 pick back in 2005, has incredible physical tools but only seems to put them to use occasionally. Utah shifted how Williams was used from a three to a stretch four — last season 44.5 percent of his shot attempts were threes and he hit 38 percent of them. Utah, however, is very deep along the front line and were not going to spend near that much to keep Williams.
Charlotte can use Williams as a stretch four also (replacing Josh McRoberts, now in Miami), with Al Jefferson in the paint and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist at the three. He will split time with Cody Zeller (who brings a tougher, more physical style of play) while the Hornets wait for rookie Noah Vonleh to develop into their four of the future.
After missing two entire seasons, all signs are pointing to 2014 No. 3 overall pick Joel Embiid finally taking the court this season. Last week, Sixers coach Brett Brown said that Embiid has looked great in his workouts and is on track to play in the preseason, and Embiid himself echoed that sentiment over the weekend. He told the Philadelphia Inquirer‘s Marc Narducci that he feels “100 percent.”
There’s always a possibility and fear that Embiid’s recurring foot problems will come back, but for now, all indications are that he’s feeling good and will be able to contribute this season, which should make Sixers fans excited.
The release of NBA 2K17, the latest edition of the popular 2K video-game series, is less than a month away. Players are starting to get their likenesses in the game, as well as their player ratings, and tweet them out. Magic forward Evan Fournier wasn’t too happy with the way his came out.
Fournier’s countryman Rudy Gobert got in on the fun, too, changing his Twitter avatar to Fournier’s screenshot and encouraging others to do the same. He even created a hashtag for it.
At least they’re having fun with it.
On Friday, the Jazz traded German center Tibor Pleiss to the Sixers along with two second-round picks for Kendall Marshall. The big draw of the trade for Philly was the picks, and Pleiss is not expected to stay with the Sixers, according to Comcast SportsNet Philadelphia’s Jessica Camerato.
Pleiss had a forgettable season with Utah, and the Sixers have a glut of bigs including Nerlens Noel, Jahlil Okafor, Joel Embiid and Dario Saric. It would have been virtually impossible for Pleiss to crack the rotation, and it’s unlikely another team picks up his contract, which has $3 million guaranteed this season.
As a Jordan Brand athlete, Russell Westbrook is under the same Nike umbrella as former teammate Kevin Durant. But his latest Jordan spot, released Friday, has a very pointed tagline: “Some run, some make runways.”
Given the circumstances, it’s hard to interpret that as anything other than a reference to Durant signing with the Warriors and Westbrook signing an extension with the Thunder.