Dan Feldman

Spurs’ video commemorating Tim Duncan’s retirement

6 Comments

The Spurs paid tribute to Tim Duncan‘s retirement with a perfectly fitting video.

No words — just a tranquil melody:

Tim Duncan retires

34 Comments

It was a matter of when, not if, Tim Duncan would retire.

Just look at the date on the press release.

Spurs release:

SAN ANTONIO (July XX, 2016) – San Antonio Spurs forward Tim Duncan today announced that he will retire after 19 seasons with the organization.

Duncan — not Kobe Bryant — was the greatest player of his generation until LeBron James came around to steal the title.

 

The No. 1 pick in the 1997 draft after four years at Wake Forest, Duncan entered the NBA to incredible expectations. And he exceeded them.

Duncan won five championships and made the playoffs each of his 19 seasons. He won two MVPs made 15 All-NBA teams (10 first teams) and 15 All-Defensive teams (eight first teams).

Known for his methodical consistency on both ends of the floor, Duncan defined this era of Spurs basketball. Gregg Popovich, Tony Parker, Manu Ginobili and even David Robinson, the Spurs’ incumbent superstar center when Duncan was drafted, followed Duncan’s lead.

Robinson created a quirk where Duncan was considered a power forward despite his 6-foot-11, 250-pound frame looking rather centerish. That’ll allow Duncan to go down as the greatest power forward of all time.

Years of solid, though declining, play have caused some to forget just how impactful Duncan was in his prime. In the 2002 and 2003 seasons, he averaged 24.4 points, 12.8 rebounds, 3.8 assists and 2.7 blocks per game.

San Antonio is well-positioned to move on. Kawhi Leonard had already supplanted Duncan as the Spurs’ top player, and LaMarcus Aldridge is a high-end big-man complement. Popovich, Parker and Ginobili return to provide their wisdom.

If San Antonio continues to pay Duncan’s $6,393,750 salary, it will count against the cap. That seems unlikely, but given everything Duncan has meant to the Spurs, it at least seems possible.

Report: Heat signing Willie Reed from Nets

NEW YORK, NY - DECEMBER 16:  Willie Reed #33 of the Brooklyn Nets heads for the net as Gerald Green #14 of the Miami Heat defends at Barclays Center on December 16, 2015 in the Brooklyn borough of  New York City.NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
Elsa/Getty Images
3 Comments

The Heat aren’t just preventing Brooklyn from getting free agents.

They’re taking the Nets’ players, too.

Shams Charania of Yahoo Sports:

Willie Reed, 26, played well in limited minutes for Brooklyn last season and in the D-League prior to that. He excels as an efficient interior scorer and rebounder. Reed will back up Hassan Whiteside, and Miami could also pursue an older veteran to share that reserve role.

None of Miami’s other additions prior to matching Tyler Johnson‘s offer sheet — Derrick Williams, James Johnson, Wayne Ellington, Udonis Haslem and Luke Babbitt — have guaranteed 2017-18 salaries. Matching Tyler Johnson’s deal probably made sense only because the Arenas rule limited his salary the next two seasons before it leaps the following two years.

Reed likely got just a minimum deal or the room exception, but the Heat putting his 2017-18 salary in his hands shows their fondness for him.

Report: Second-rounder Deyonta Davis gets more guaranteed money than half the first round

UNIVERSITY PARK, PA - JANUARY 10:  Deyonta Davis #23 of the Michigan State Spartans shoots the ball against the defense of Brandon Taylor #10 of the Penn State Nittany Lions during the second half at the Bryce Jordan Center on January 10, 2016 in University Park, Pennsylvania.  Michigan State won 92-65.  (Photo by Rich Barnes/Getty Images)
Rich Barnes/Getty Images
Leave a comment

Wade Baldwin, the No. 17 pick in the 2016 NBA draft, will have $3,668,160 of his contract guaranteed.

Thanks to an antiquated rookie scale and exploding salary cap, one of his later-picked teammates — second-rounder Deyonta Davis — has even more security.

Shams Charania of Yahoo Sports:

Memphis Grizzlies rookie Deyonta Davis – the No. 31 pick in the 2016 NBA draft – has agreed to a three-year, $4 million deal, marking the richest guaranteed salary for an American-born second-round pick, league sources told The Vertical.

Half the first round won’t get $4 million guaranteed, though first-rounders get just two seasons guaranteed. Davis has three.

Still, Davis’ salary trumps a few first-rounders.

He will earn 1,275,917, $1,333,333 and $1,390,750 the next three years. That’s more than six first-rounders, and, again, Davis is the only one with that third year guaranteed.

Plus, he’ll become a free agent in 2019 — a year before his first-round counterparts. Davis has a chance for a much bigger payday while they’re stuck on their rookie scale.

Davis, who expected to go in the first-round when he left Michigan State after his freshman year, looked quite sad during his draft-night tumble. Predictably, this turned out better for him than had he gone a few picks earlier and gotten that first-round status.

C.J. McCollum withdraws from USA Basketball select team

OAKLAND, CA - MAY 11:  C.J. McCollum #3 of the Portland Trail Blazers dribbles the ball against the Golden State Warriors during Game Five of the Western Conference Semifinals during the 2016 NBA Playoffs on May 11, 2016 at Oracle Arena in Oakland, California.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
Ezra Shaw/Getty Images
Leave a comment

USA Basketball made Thunder guard Victor Oladipo a late addition to the select team, which practices with the national team in advance of the Olympics.

But why add someone so late in the process to a squad that already went 25 deep?

C.J. McCollum.

Chris Haynes of Cleveland.com:

Portland Trail Blazers guard and Canton, Ohio native C.J. McCollum has elected not to participate with the USA Select Team this summer, league sources informed cleveland.com.

McCollum, who won the Most Improved award for the 2015-16 campaign, made the decision to concentrate his efforts fully on the upcoming season, sources relayed to cleveland.com.

That clears up the Oladipo questions, but why did McCollum accept an invitation then change his mind?