Report: Will Cherry drawing interest from Cavaliers, Raptors

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One of my favorite little duels of Summer League was when Will Cherry and Casper Ware went mano-a-mano for a lengthy stretch of a Cavaliers vs. Sixers game in Las Vegas. These are two very quick, undersized point guards who want the ball in their hands and were trying hard to make an impression, trying to catch on as a third point guard in a league where carrying that guard is becoming more common.

Cherry was hard to miss even for a guy generously listed as 6’0” — on a team with Andrew Wiggins and Anthony Bennett he was the aggressor with the ball, never fearing to attack or take a shot. He was a gunner. He averaged 12.8 points a game but shot a very nice 52 percent doing so. The former Montana star played a few games in the D-League for the Canton Charge last season but made an impression in Las Vegas.

Enough that he is getting looks from Cleveland and Toronto, reports Marc Spears of Yahoo Sports.

My guess is Cherry ends up with a make-good contract heading into training camp.

For a team looking for a third point guard who can come in and be a spark, put up points, be a fan favorite, and work hard in practice a guy like Cherry (or Ware) can be a good fit. Not on every roster, but there are spots he could work in the league and Cleveland could be one of them.

Serge Ibaka gets dunked on by Enes Kanter, hit in face by ball (video)

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Is Enes Kanter mad Serge Ibaka rifted with his family?

(No, not this family. That family.)

LeBron James blows wide-open dunk (video)

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J.R. Smith (slightly out of context): “We don’t start paying attention until after All-Star break.”

Report: Raptors’ Delon Wright out a month

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Raptors guard Delon Wright dislocated his shoulder, but at least he won’t need surgery.

Raptors media relations:

Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN:

The Raptors (11-5), off to a surprisingly strong start, are second in the Eastern Conference. They’ve bought themselves margin for error. All in all, a month-long absence for Wright isn’t so bad.

Wright had been a key part of an excellent all-bench unit that included Fred VanVleet, O.G. Anunoby, C.J. Miles and Jakob Poeltl. Two-way player Lorenzo Brown has assumed Wright’s role, and Norman Powell – returning from his own injury – will provide a boost. Toronto can also stagger Kyle Lowry and DeMar DeRozan more.

The chemistry of the bench mob was something to behold, but the Raptors should withstand this.

Report: Clippers PG Patrick Beverley out rest of season

AP Photo/Michael Owen Baker
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Clippers point guard Patrick Beverley underwent knee surgery – never a great sign.

The prognosis is about as bad as could be expected.

Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN:

This injury isn’t just a setback for this season. It could derail the Clippers’ long-term plan.

They’ve already lost nine straight, and Danilo Gallinari and Milos Teodosic are injured. If they fall further out of playoff position, they could become sellers before the trade deadline, especially with DeAndre Jordan ($24,119,025 player option for next season) and Lou Williams ($7 million salary on expiring contract).

Health was always the major question with this team, and it won’t soften as Blake Griffin and Danilo Gallinari age through lucrative contracts.

The final year of Beverley’s contract is guaranteed for just $5,027,028 next season, and the 29-year-old will spend most of the summer recovering from this injury. That salary is probably low enough that the Clippers will keep him without hesitation.

Until then, down a couple point guards, the Clippers have no choice but to continue leaning more on Austin Rivers. That also means greater roles for second-round rookies Jawun Evans and Sindarius Thornwell. That’s just too many players facing outsized responsibility.

The Pelicans, Grizzlies, Jazz and any other team competing for the final playoff spots in the Western Conference ought to feel better about their chances. They’re still competing with each other, and it’s doubtful all three make it. But Beverley’s injury helps clear the way.

The Clippers, who didn’t want to take a major step back after Chris Paul‘s departure, must confront an even more uneasy reality.