Dan Feldman

MIAMI, FL - JUNE 25:  Dwyane Wade of the Miami Heat looks on during a celebration parade for the 2012 NBA Champion Miami Heat on June 25, 2012 in Miami, Florida.  (Photo by Sarah Glenn/Getty Images)
Sarah Glenn/Getty Images

Dwyane Wade following well-worn path as franchise icon joining a new team

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Dwyane Wade is the best player in Miami Heat history.

LeBron James hit a higher peak, but he didn’t accomplish nearly as much in four years as Wade did in 13. Shaquille O’Neal spent even less time than LeBron in Miami and was too far into his decline to earn the title. Alonzo Mourning never reached Wade’s heights in top-end performance, longevity or playoff success with Heat.

Wade has defined the franchise since he led Miami to the 2006 title. Recruiting LeBron and Chris Bosh to the Heat and winning championships in 2012 and 2013 only further cemented Wade’s Heat legacy.

And now he’s playing for a new team.

Wade, who agreed to terms with the Bulls, grew up in Chicago and said he always envisioned himself in a Bulls jersey. For the rest of us, it’ll be a shocking sight.

There’s a history of great players who’ve established such a strong identity with one team then played for another, though. Here are players who’ve made at least eight All-Star appearances with their first NBA team then switched teams:

Player First team All-Star berths with first team Next team(s)
Karl Malone Utah Jazz 14 Los Angeles Lakers
Bob Cousy Boston Celtics 13 Cincinnati Royals
Michael Jordan Chicago Bulls 12 Washington Wizards
Hakeem Olajuwon Houston Rockets 12 Toronto Raptors
Patrick Ewing New York Knicks 11 Seattle SuperSonics, Orlando Magic
Dwyane Wade Miami Heat 10 Chicago Bulls
Paul Pierce Boston Celtics 10 Brooklyn Nets, Washington Wizards, Los Angeles Clippers
Kevin Garnett Minnesota Timberwolves 10 Boston Celtics, Brooklyn Nets, Minnesota Timberwolves
Oscar Robertson Cincinnati Royals 10 Milwaukee Bucks
Gary Payton Seattle SuperSonics 9 Milwaukee Bucks, Los Angeles Lakers, Boston Celtics, Miami Heat
George Gervin San Antonio Spurs 9 Chicago Bulls
Clyde Drexler Portland Trail Blazers 8 Houston Rockets
Dave Cowens Boston Celtics 8 Milwaukee Bucks

Hakeem Olajuwon with the Raptors and Patrick Ewing with the Sonics and Magic are common comparisons, but this doesn’t always go so badly. Wade is probably too old to match Oscar Robertson’s success with the Bucks, but Clyde Drexler with the Rockets is a reasonable best-case scenario.

Either way, the odds are strongly against us remembering Wade as something other than a Heat great who spent a couple late years elsewhere. No matter how it seems today, his Miami connection is that strong.

Mavericks GM handcuffs himself to Harrison Barnes, avoids another DeAndre Jordan situation (photo)

OAKLAND, CA - JANUARY 27:  Harrison Barnes #40 of the Golden State Warriors dribbles past Deron Williams #8 of the Dallas Mavericks at ORACLE Arena on January 27, 2016 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
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The Mavericks were not amused about DeAndre Jordan reneging on his pledge to sign with Dallas last summer.

They’re having a little more fun about it now with Harrison Barnes.

Mavericks owner Mark Cuban:

Dallas either misplayed this joke — Jordan changed his mind during the moratorium, before he could sign; Rick Carlisle is holding up a signed deal after the moratorium ended — or Barnes has been cuffed to Donnie Nelson for a long time.

Either way, congratulations to the Mavericks for holding off a last-ditch effort by the Warriors who seemed so desperate to flip Barnes back to them and cast off Kevin Durant.

NBA’s 2017-18 salary-cap projection falls from $107 million to $102 million

AP Money Found
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NBA teams are doing a great job spending money this summer.

They’re spending so much, in fact, they’ll probably have less flexibility than expected next summer.

Eric Pincus of Basketball Insiders:

The NBA’s salary cap projection for the 2017-18 season has dropped from $107 million to $102 million.

In a memo distributed to all 30 teams, which was obtained by Basketball Insiders, the NBA credits a “substantial increase in projected player spending for 2016-17” that will reduce the league’s projected shortfall to the players to $200 million.

The league also projects a tax threshold of $122 million for next year.

The projected maximum salaries for 2017-18, based on a $102 million cap, would near $24 million for players with less than seven years of experience, $28.8 million with seven to nine and $33.5 million for those with 10 years or more.

The salary cap projects to climb to $108 million in 2018-19, $109 million in 2019-20 and $114 million in 2020-21.  The tax threshold is expected to rise to $130 million, $132 million and $139 million, respectively.

Most importantly, take these projections for what they are: Estimates based on a system that could radically change. Either the owners or players could opt out of the Collective Bargaining Agreement by December 15, and a new deal would govern 2017 and beyond.

Why the drop in 2017-18 projection, though? The salary cap is determined by revenue, but this isn’t Charles Barkley’s doomsday prediction that fans will tire of super teams and tune out. If teams don’t collectively pay players their negotiated share in a season, the next season’s cap is adjusted upward accordingly. The NBA didn’t expect teams to spend so much this summer.

But, as you’ve seen, teams have had little trouble doling out 2016-17 salary.

Report: Pistons signing Boban Marjanovic to $21 million offer sheet, Spurs signing Dewayne Dedmon for $6 million

SAN ANTONIO, TX - APRIL 17: Boban Marjanovic #40 of the San Antonio Spurs dunks in front of Jordan Farmar #4 of the Memphis Grizzlies during Game One of the Western Conference Quarterfinals during the 2016 NBA Playoffs at AT&T Center on April 17, 2016 in San Antonio, Texas.  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 Ronald Cortes/Getty Images)
Ronald Cortes/Getty Images
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Can Boban Marjanovic turn from novelty to contributor?

The Pistons want to find out.

Marc Stein of ESPN:

In the next three years, Marjanovic will earn:

  • $5,628,000
  • $5,881,260
  • $9,490,740

His cap number in Detroit will be $7 million each season if the Spurs don’t match, and they probably won’t, because they’ve found a replacement center: Dewyane Dedmon.

Shams Charania of Yahoo Sports:

Dedmon is a scrappy big man who protects the rim, rebounds, fouls too much and possesses limited offensive skills. The Spurs could use someone like that with two more finesse bigs — LaMarcus Aldridge and Pau Gasol — starting. It sounds like Dedmon will get the room exception, and that’s good value.

But he’s not nearly as intriguing as Marjanovic, who absolutely dominated in limited playing time as a rookie. Marjanovic averaged 21.0 points on 60.3% shooting, 13.7 rebounds and 1.6 blocks per 36 minutes. The 7-foot-3 center with humungous hands even showed some touch as an outside shooter and passer.

Yet, Marjanovic played just 508 minutes. San Antonio shielded him from quality opponents and tough matchups, of which they’ll be plenty for someone so slow. The risk with Marjanovic is teams running him through pick-and-roll after pick-and-roll until he’s completely exposed.

Marjanovic, who turns 28 next month, is also a year older than Dedmon. Both have more upside than their ages would suggest — Marjanovic due to his late arrival in the NBA, Dedmon due to his late start playing basketball — but age still matters.

How the Pistons create cap room for Marjanovic is a little unclear, though exact salaries for Jon Leuer and Ish Smith are unknown. Joel Anthony will probably be waived. If Detroit feels Marjanovic is ready to contribute, Aron Baynes could be moved.

The Spurs might wish they gave Marjanovic longer than a one-year contract want he signed from Europe last summer, but at least Dedmon is a good fallback option.

The Pistons make the bigger move, likely adding one of the NBA’s fascinating players.

NBA using new transparent shot clock that improves timing coordination

Tissot_Shot_clock_Timekeeping
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Referees are calling perfection undesirable.

Meanwhile, the NBA is trying to get more calls right.

The league will use a new shot clock with better technology next season.

NBA release:

The clean, sleek shot clock is visibly free of cables and conductors and equipped with TISSOT’s LED glass, making the clock nearly transparent when in use and fully transparent while turned off.  It integrates the 24-second, timeout, and game clocks in one piece of hardware – a first for the league.  Transitions between numbers are instant and undetectable even by high-speed TV cameras, resulting in definitive footage that will further assist NBA referees and the NBA Replay Center in evaluating certain critical calls.

The new system simultaneously transmits exact timing data to all in-arena scoreboards and video equipment, letting fans follow the action within fractions of a second.  Clock and scoreboard operators in all arenas will control the system

I’m all for using technology to reduce human error. The less put on referees, the better. Allow them to focus on the calls that can’t be made through technology.

Plus, the new shot clock should reduce replay times and allow fans behind the shot clock a better view.

This change is probably overdue, but it’s a good step in improving the game.