Tag: Earl Clark

Brooklyn Nets v Atlanta Hawks- Game One

Report: Nets doing Earl Clark a favor and waiving him


Earl Clark, after spending most of the season in China, was looking for an NBA contract late last season.

The Nets obliged, but they made the deal a little more advantageous for themselves. In addition to signing Clark for the rest of the season, they added a unguaranteed year to his contract. That would allow them to test him at training camp this year – at no cap cost – before deciding whether to keep him

Clark’s contract would have become $200,000 on Oct. 26, according to Basketball Insiders.

Clark, of course, didn’t want to get stuck going through training camp only to get cut at its conclusion. He wants to pursue overseas deals now if he wasn’t going to make Brooklyn’s team.

So, the Nets are doing him a favor.

Shams Charania of RealGM:

Waiving Clark would give Brooklyn 16 players, one more than the regular-season limit. Four players without fully guaranteed contracts – Willie Reed ($500,000 guaranteed), Markel Brown ($150,000 guaranteed), Ryan Boatright ($75,000 guaranteed) and Quincy Miller ($50,000 guaranteed) – are probably competing for the final three roster spots.

That race gets a little easier for them with Clark bowing out.

Report: Teams around league expect Brook Lopez, Thaddeus Young to re-sign with Nets

Brook Lopez

When the Brooklyn Nets shipped Mason Plumlee out the door on draft night, trading him to Portland, it was a sign they were very confident they could bring back free agents Brook Lopez and Thaddeus Young. As New York Post Nets writer Tim Bontemps noted, the only other bigs on the roster are Cory Jefferson, Earl Clark, and Chris McCullough.

The Nets need Lopez and Young back, and the sense around the league is they will get just that.

From Marc Stein and Mike Mazzeo of ESPN:

Rival teams interested in Brooklyn Nets free agents Brook Lopez and Thaddeus Young are increasingly convinced that they have no shot at luring either one away from the incumbent Nets, according to league sources.

Sources told ESPN.com that both Lopez and Young are widely expected to reach verbal agreements on new deals with the Nets early in free agency, which officially begins Wednesday at midnight.

Not long after free agency opens, the Nets are expected to reach a verbal agreement with Lopez for three-years, $60 million, while Young will get in the neighborhood of four years, $50 million, according to multiple reports. The two sides can start negotiating on July 1, but no deal can be signed around the league until July 9 (there is a moratorium).

The Nets are active on other fronts as well. They are trying to trade Joe Johnson and Deron Williams, both guys are making more than $20 million next season and the Nets want to reduce or eliminate their luxury tax.

Mazzeo also added this about another Nets free agent.

Report: Chandler Parsons was ‘Cleveland’s guy’ if Cavaliers failed to land LeBron James


Before last season began, the Cavaliers were aggressive in free agency, foregoing a more traditional strategy by signing free agents that the team believed would help them improve immediately, and certainly enough to make the playoffs in the watered-down Eastern Conference.

It’s just that none of those moves worked out.

Cleveland signed Earl Clark after he had his best season with the Lakers, and added Jarrett Jack after he was a key component on a playoff team in Golden State. And, perhaps most foolishly, the team took a chance on Andrew Bynum, which ended in about as messy a divorce as possible.

The point, here, is that the Cavaliers have proven that they would go out and add players in free agency, even if the decisions about specific players were questionable, at best. LeBron James and Kevin Love solved the organization’s problems in that area this summer, but had James chosen to remain in Miami, another curious roster move was reportedly on the horizon.

From Marc Stein of ESPN.com:

Yet the most serious early interest in Parsons in 2014 free agency actually came from Cleveland. It was widely assumed in Mavericks circles that Dallas would turn its attentions to Parsons once formally eliminated as an option by Melo and LeBron, but sources told ESPN.com that Parsons — before things really heated up with his eventual new employers — found himself being recruited by another All-Star peer he regards as a friend: Cavaliers guard Kyrie Irving.

Sources say the Cavs, furthermore, would soon inform Parsons he was “Cleveland’s guy” if their ambitious bid to bring LeBron home unraveled.

This detail comes from a longer look at Parsons’ journey as an unrestricted free agent, which ended with the Rockets not matching the three-year offer sheet tendered by the Mavericks.

It’s unclear if Parsons would have considered the Cavaliers as a real option, because like so many NBA cities, Cleveland is undesirable to free agents anytime LeBron doesn’t happen to be firmly in place on the team’s roster. But would he, by himself, really have been enough to push the team to a higher level, and one capable of consistent postseason contention? And, would the salary the Cavaliers committed have prevented the team from making smarter upgrades that would have better-positioned them for long-term success?

Thankfully in Cleveland, these are difficult questions that now don’t need to be answered.

ProBasketballTalk 2014-15 Preview: Cleveland Cavaliers

LeBron James

Last season: A complete mess. The Cavaliers made well-intended moves in free agency in an attempt to make an immediate run at a trip to the postseason, but Earl Clark, Jarrett Jack and especially Andrew Bynum were of no help at all. Mike Brown had zero control of the team as head coach, which became painfully evident to Luol Deng once he got an up-close look at the team in the second half of the season. Kyrie Irving and Dion Waiters bickered over their roles behind the scenes, and a miserable season ended with the Cavaliers finishing five games out of the playoffs in the dreadful Eastern Conference.

Signature highlight from last season: There were plenty of Kyrie Irving highlights to choose from, but I liked this particular play because it involved three players who should all figure somewhat prominently in Cleveland’s success in the upcoming season. Matthew Dellavedova uses an Anderson Varejao screen to perfection, then finds a cutting Dion Waiters with a gorgeous pass to set up an athletic, one-handed reverse slam dunk.

Key offseason moves:

Keys to the Cavaliers season:

The players: The Cavaliers undoubtedly made the biggest summer splash by overhauling things completely, adding superstar talent while still retaining the team’s core players. Once LeBron James committed to returning home to Cleveland, the team went all out to fortify the roster, trading unproven lottery picks for an established All-Star in Kevin Love, and then signing some key veteran role players to round things out.

Cleveland should be one of the best teams in the league offensively, with enough firepower to simply outscore their opponents most nights. But the defensive end of the floor is a concern, as is the lack of depth on the frontline. Once you get past Love, Tristan Thompson and Anderson Varejao, things get dicey fairly quickly, and Varejao, remember, has had trouble staying healthy for the bulk of his recent seasons. The Cavs will be looking at guys like Lou Amundson in training camp, who may have a shot to make the roster.

As for the positives, scoring should come fairly easily, with James, Love, Irving and Waiters all being capable scorers. It will take time to sort out the hierarchy of how the shots get distributed, and it will also take time for the young guys like Irving and Waiters to understand how to play alongside James without deferring too much. But there’s a long 82-game regular season for them to figure all that out, and simply from a pure talent standpoint, the Cavaliers have instantly become one of the favorites to take home the title.

The coach: Cleveland went in a different direction after the Mike Brown disaster of a season ago, hiring well-respected and experienced David Blatt, who built a pristine reputation and a long, successful career coaching overseas. It should be viewed as a huge positive that the organization hired a career coach with tons of experience, and one who is coming off of a championship season with Maccabi Tel Aviv — as opposed to an NBA retread who was fired from his last position.

Blatt has 33 years playing and coaching in Europe, and to a certain extent, basketball is basketball, so the transition shouldn’t be all that bumpy. But it is worth noting that he hasn’t coached in the NBA, where not only is the game different, but so are the player personalities. Blatt was hired before LeBron was confirmed to return, which obviously was a pleasant surprise. But he’ll be thrown into the fire quite quickly, and if things take longer than expected to come together, how he handles it all will be a key factor in the end result of this Cavaliers season.

The pressure: When LeBron left Cleveland to sign with Miami four years ago, the Heat immediately became rock stars. The media crush was palpable, and the team was expected to win on a nightly basis. There was talk of them surpassing Chicago’s record of 72 regular season wins, and every loss was met with an avalanche of criticism, along with questions of whether or not the team had what it took to ultimately become champions.

That Miami team was led by Pat Riley in the front office, and coached by his protege in Erik Spoelstra — both of whom had resumes full of previous championship experience. And, veterans like Dwyane Wade and Udonis Haslem were similarly there to help keep the panic in check and keep the team focused when there was nothing but constant hysteria surrounding them.

It’s very different in Cleveland. Not only is Blatt inexperienced with this type of situation in the NBA, but Love has never made it to the playoffs even once in six NBA seasons. The Cavaliers as a franchise haven’t been there since James was last on the roster, so it’ll be interesting to see how the team reacts to the circus-like atmosphere that is firmly in place now that LeBron, along with the championship-level expectations, have returned to town.

Why you should watch: LeBron James is the game’s best player, and he’s in the prime of his career. Add Kevin Love and Kyrie Irving to the mix, and you have essentially the makings of an All-Star team in the starting lineup every single night. If you’re not a fan, of course, there’s the potential train wreck factor — root for Cleveland to go on a three-game losing streak early on, and watch the ensuing chaos.

Prediction: There should be no reason that the Cavaliers finish anywhere outside of being one of the top two teams in the Eastern Conference. I think the Bulls have a chance to be better, especially on the defensive end of the floor, but a lot of that hinges on Derrick Rose, which hasn’t worked out all that well the past two seasons.

Cleveland could certainly compete for a title in its first season with all of these new pieces in place, which would make a ridiculous five straight trips to the Finals for LeBron James. I don’t see a championship for the Cavaliers due to a lack of depth and too many new parts needing to fit together seamlessly, but it’s realistic to expect that they get extremely close.

Grizzlies sign Hassan Whiteside

Rio Grande Valley Vipers vs. Fort Wayne Mad Ants

Hassan Whiteside has a 7-foot-7 wingspan.

In two seasons with the Kings, Whiteside couldn’t cut it, playing just a combined 19 games in 2010-11 and 2011-12.

But he has a 7-foot-7 wingspan.

He also has poor court awareness, maturity concerns and questions about his focus.

Did I mention his 7-foot-7 wingspan?

That incredible wingspan (plus quality athleticism) makes Whiteside an excellent shot blocker, and it also keeps NBA teams interested.

Ronald Tillery of The Commercial Appeal:

Whiteside, whom Sacramento drafted No. 33 in 2010 after he’d received some lottery buzz, has a chance – albeit a long one – to make Memphis’ opening-day roster.

The Grizzlies have 14 players with guaranteed contracts plus Earl Clark, Patrick Christopher, Luke Hancock and Whiteside on unguaranteed deals. One of those four could earn the final roster spot, though Memphis could always stick with just 14 players.

With Marc Gasol, Kosta Koufos and Jon Leuer, the Grizzlies are set at center. However, if Whiteside performs well during training camp, they could use Leuer more at power forward and keep Whiteside as their third center.

Most likely, Whiteside will tempt the Grizzlies with all his tools. Then, they’ll waive him.