Kurt Helin

CLEVELAND, OH - JUNE 16:  Draymond Green #23 of the Golden State Warriors speaks to the media after they defeated the Cleveland Cavaliers in Game Six of the 2015 NBA Finals at Quicken Loans Arena on June 16, 2015 in Cleveland, Ohio. 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 Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)

Draymond Green keeps saying he’s not looking to leave Warriors as free agent

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Draymond Green is a restricted free agent this summer.

Draymond Green wants to get paid max money.

Just don’t let those two facts lead you down the “my team can snatch Green away from Golden State” road. Because they can’t, despite some reports earlier this season.

Don’t take my word for it, take Green’s. Here is what he told Tim Kawakami of the San Jose Mercury News.

I asked him specifically: Draymond, are you sure you’ll be part of this team next season?
“I’ll be here,” Green said firmly and distinctly. “I love this group of guys.”

Or, there is what Green said on KNBR radio in the Bay Area, via the Bay Area News Group’s Diamond Leung.

Or there is what the Pistons — the team near where Green grew up, a team that would love to bring him back home — are saying, via Vince Ellis of the Detroit Free Press.

Pistons fans have been yearning for Green to return since a Yahoo! Sports report said that Green had “had significant interest with pursuing an offer sheet with his hometown Detroit Pistons.” But the Free Press has reported that the Pistons’ front office views signing Green as unrealistic because the Warriors will match any offer sheet he signs.

Or if those three things are not enough, there is what Warriors GM Bob Meyers said about Green returning:

“Tell the Warrior fans they shouldn’t worry.”

I think that should about cover it.

Tim Duncan says he lost more than $20 million, allegedly stolen by financial advisor

Tim Duncan
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Back in January, we told you Tim Duncan was suing a former financial advisor over some dealings that cost Duncan money.

Now we find out how much — more than $20 million, Duncan told Bloomberg News (hat tip Eye on Basketball).

Ouch. Bloomberg asked if that was going to impact Duncan’s decision to return to the NBA next season, something not yet officially decided or announced. He’s fortunate enough to be able to laugh that idea off.

“Luckily I had a long career and made good money,” the 39-year-old Duncan, who has been paid about $220 million over his career, including about $10 million this past season, said in a telephone interview. “This is a big chunk, but it’s not going to change my life in any way. It’s not going to make any decisions for me.”

 

Good for Duncan that dropping more than $20 million isn’t going to change his lifestyle, because he was smart with the rest of his money. The financial issue came to light during an auditing of Duncan’s financials as part of his recent divorce and allegedly took place over an eight-year span starting in 2005.

The advisor, Charles Banks, has denied the claims in the lawsuit, saying this is just Duncan trying to use the suit as leverage to get out of some investments. Ultimately a judge will get to decide the case.

That still leaves the question: Is Duncan coming back? Duncan, of course, isn’t talking about it, but the buzz around the league is that the Spurs expect him back for one more year. There are rumors that he started his workout training again — you wouldn’t do that in June just to get your body ready for swimsuit season, it would be about coming back. But with Duncan, until it is official, we will wait (he would make the announcement before July 1 so if he retires the Spurs could use his cap space to chase free agents).

For NBA stars sell: 2015 NBA Finals draw highest television ratings since Jordan era

2015 NBA Finals - Game Two
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For decades — since Magic Johnson and Larry Bird — the NBA has marketed its stars more than its teams. With that, the NBA’s television ratings and national popularity have been tied to the quality of its stars.

When the 2015 NBA Finals pitted the two most popular players in the game today — LeBron James and Stephen Curry — the NBA was in for a ratings bonanza.

These NBA Finals averaged 19.9 million viewers per game, up 30 percent from last year (when LeBron James was there taking on Tim Duncan and the Spurs), the league and ESPN/ABC announced. That is the highest ratings ever since ABC took over the broadcasts. ESPN’s Darren Rovell reported it’s the highest ratings for an NBA finals since 1998 — Michael Jordan’s final season (we choose to ignore the Wizards years).

NBA television viewership has been up and down in recent seasons, but the drama of this series drew viewers to their televisions.

It also sent them to social media — Facebook reported 32 million of its users were discussing the NBA Finals and there were 98 million video views tied to the Finals.

The real test for the NBA is to build on this next year — regardless of who makes the NBA Finals.

PBT Extra, Twitter reaction edition: Should Andre Iguodala have been MVP?

150617-Andre-Iguodala
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Wednesday morning I took to twitter and asked for people’s reactions to the NBA Finals. Then we took some of the best of those and talked them over with Jenna Corrado in this PBT Extra.

At the top of the list: People didn’t love the pick of Andre Iguodala as the MVP.

 

Report: Danny Granger opts in with Phoenix Suns

Danny Granger
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Did you even remember Danny Granger was with the Suns?

Granger spent the start of the season with the Miami Heat but played a limited role, then he was shipped to Phoenix as part of the three-team Goran Dragic trade. Granger took his time joining up with the Suns and never played when he did.

But the man wants to get paid, so he opted into his contract, reports Eric Pincus of BasketballInsiders.

There is zero chance Granger — at the tail end of a nice NBA career cut short by injuries — was going to get $2.1 million on the open market, so he is taking the cash owed him. It’s the smart business move.

The Suns might try to move that contract with another trade.

Meanwhile, Granger will work out and get treatments this summer from the apparent miracle workers that are the Phoenix Suns training staff. Maybe after a summer with the Suns he can have some value on the court again. Maybe.