Elton Brand said after last season he wanted to play a 16th season in the NBA, and he may get that.
Last season in Atlanta Brand was thrust into a larger-than-expected role when Al Horford went down and he played solidly, particularly on defense where he was key. He didn’t put up big numbers (5.7 points and 4.9 rebounds a game) but he was efficient (.561 true shooting percentage). That said, against Indiana in the first round of the playoffs the Hawks went small (wisely) trying to space the floor and Brand’s role shrunk.
That was good enough for the Hawks to consider bringing him back, reports Chris Vivlamore at the Atlanta Journal Constitution (via Eye on Basketball).
The Hawks could add a 15th player before the start of training camp next month. They are in negotiations with unrestricted center Elton Brand, who played last season with the team.
It’s not a signing that really moves the needle either way, but if this is a veteran minimum deal and Brand is used as he was at the start of last season — which is to say, sparingly, only in certain match ups — then this is a solid pickup. Brand would be good in the locker room and can still do some things on the court, you just don’t want to lean on him like the Hawks had to last season (he started 15 games).
It’s something to watch, but it would not be a bad get for the Hawks.
The Spurs beat the Mavericks by 26 points on Friday night, a game all of the Dallas players would love to forget. But there was a funny moment for rookie big man Salah Mejri: after a dunk, he appeared to yell something at the San Antonio bench. Gregg Popovich and Tim Duncan were completely nonplussed.
For what it’s worth, Mejri later tweeted that he wasn’t intending to be disrespectful.
Hassan Whiteside recorded a triple-double last night against the Hornets, and his tenth block was particularly impressive. He didn’t so much block Marvin Williams‘ layup attempt as pluck it out of the air with one hand. It almost looks like it should count as a block, rebound and steal at the same time.
The NBA world has taken notice of the water crisis in Flint, Michigan. In Thursday night’s home game against the Knicks on TNT, Pistons players wore warmup shirts that read “FLINT NOW,” and the organization announced a $500,000 donation towards providing clean water for residents of the town.
Former Pistons great and general basketball legend Rasheed Wallace went even further, according to a tweet from his alma mater, the University of North Carolina:
Sheed obviously has a connection to Michigan, having played in Detroit for six years (including on the 2004 title team) and serving as an assistant coach for the Pistons during the 2013-14 season. This was an incredible gesture by him for the residents of a town that has been without drinkable water for a long time.
The Kings are a complete mess right now. After a loss to the Nets on Friday night, the team is reportedly considering firing head coach George Karl, who has been with the team for just about one year, and DeMarcus Cousins says they have “a bigger issue than the players.”
But, on the bright side, Cousins is still a monster on the court. During the Nets loss, he posted a triple-double with 24 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists, showing why he’s the one thing about this franchise that is going to be worth talking about long-term.