Dalembert considering Heat, Knicks, Rockets

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Centers are at a premium in this league, that should be evident by now. Nene, Tyson Chandler, Marc Gasol, all will lead this free agency class. Dwight Howard headlines the next. Chandler’s defensive impact was a primary factor in the Mavericks winning the title. So Samuel Dalembert will be getting his fair share of calls in the next few weeks as teas vie for his services. More importantly? Dalembert’s willing to take less to play for a contender. Say hello to Miami.

From FoxSportsFlorida.com:

Soon, the Miami Heat might have a basketball volunteer in Dalembert. The team desperately needs a center, and the 6-foot-11 Dalembert is a free agent. And the Heat is high on his list as the free agency signing period is expected to begin Dec. 9 following a five-month lockout.

Joining the Heat “would be fantastic,” Dalembert said Sunday night from Haiti in an interview with FOX Sports Florida. Miami is where more than 50 of his relatives live and is about one hour south of his home in Boca Raton.

via Dalembert: Joining Heat ‘would be fantastic’.

Dalembert would provide a major upgrade for the Heat who very nearly won the title anyway. Joel Anthony would work a lot better at power forward alongside Udonis Haslem. Having size inside to deter opponents inside would help the perimeter weapons of Dwyane Wade and LeBron James and take pressure off Chris Bosh, the starting power forward. Dalembert’s strengths would play perfectly to the Heat’s style and his offense is just strong enough to make him a better offensive weapon than Anthony.

But the Heat aren’t the only option on Dalembert’s radar. He also lists the Knicks and Rockets. The Knicks are starting Ronny Turiaf. There really shouldn’t be any further discussion, but sure, why not. Dalembert’s mobile enough to function in D’Antoni’s offense while not only providing defense at the rim, but rebounding which is an inherent issue in the Knicks’ coach’s system. However, as long as the Knicks are focused on acquiring Dwight Howard in 2012, the Knicks will likely tread lightly in their approach. If CP3 is their primary objective, though, Dalembert would improve the Knicks and make them a more attractive option.

Finally, Dalembert also regards Houston as a potential landing spot, since they need a center with Yao gone. The Rockets are making a lot of noise about being active in free agency, with Nene also a target according to reports. But Dalembert doesn’t make the Rockets that much better, which is what the Rockets really need.

Dalembert’s going to have his options, and his decision could impact who wins the next NBA title.

Report: Dewayne Dedmon opts in for $6.3 million with Hawks

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The Hawks’ rebuild got going with big John Collins. Though they’re reportedly eying Luka Doncic with the No. 3 pick, they could easily draft another big – Jaren Jackson Jr., Mohamed Bamba, Marvin Bagley or Wendell Carter.

And then there’s veteran center Dewayne Dedmon.

He no longer fits in Atlanta (never did, really). But he’s not bypassing a chance to earn $6.3 million.

Shams Charania of Yahoo Sports:

There just wasn’t going to be that much money for the 28-year-old Dedmon in a tight market this summer.

Dedmon is a good defender, and he developed his ball skills – as a 3-point shooter and passer – in Atlanta last season. The Hawks could look to trade him. Maybe, in a deal primarily about his expiring contract, he adds extra value to the other team due to his playing ability.

If Atlanta doesn’t move him, Dedmon will be a fine player on a likely tanking team. At least he’s not good enough to subvert the Hawks’ tank, especially with the new lottery format.

Nick Young says ‘everybody needs to do cocaine,’ later insists he was joking

AP Photo/Mary Altaffer
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Nick Young will say and do nearly anything for attention.

Empowered by the Warriors’ championship, he swung for the fences when asked about Canada passing marijuana legalization.

Young, via TMZ:

“I want people to pass cocaine,” the NBA star told TMZ Sports outside 1 OAK on Tuesday night … “Everybody needs to do cocaine!”

Predictably, that caused a bit of an uproar. Then, Young backtracked:

Chill. You know I was just joking

A post shared by Nick Young (@swaggyp1) on

Too late, Nick. People are already asking questions you don’t want asked.

Report: 76ers trade No. 39 pick to Lakers

AP Photo/Chris Szagola
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The 76ers have too many 2018 draft picks – Nos. 10, 26, 38, 39, 56 and 60.

Philadelphia already has 11 players under contract for next season. Plus, the 76ers have the space to add premier players. There just isn’t room for everyone on the roster.

So, Philadelphia unloaded one of those selections.

Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN:

This is good return for the 76ers, who everyone knew had to trade a draft pick. The rebuilding Bulls could easily land a higher second-round pick than No. 39 next year.

Why do the Lakers want an extra second-rounder this year? Second-round picks don’t count against the cap until signed, and they can always slightly sweeten a trade offer. They’re helpful for a team with big plans and little wiggle room.

Kyle O’Quinn opts out of Knicks contract

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The Knicks have the No. 8 pick, and tomorrow’s draft will be the most important part of their offseason.

Will they also have cap space to add talent in free agency? That hinges on Enes Kanter‘s player option.

If Kanter opts out, New York will have even more room to operate thanks to Kyle O'Quinn declining his $4,256,250 player option.

Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN:

The Knicks expected this for a while, and they’re probably not disappointed. Steve Mills and Scott Perry want to put their stamp on the franchise. O’Quinn is a leftover from the Phil Jackson era and a reminder of the recent tumult in New York.

O’Quinn’s combination of block percentage (6.1) and defensive-rebounding percentage (27.8) was unmatched last season. He just really struck a nice balance between contesting shots and remaining in position on the glass. He’s also a smooth mid-range shooter with an improved ability to distribute.

How much is that player worth?

It’ll be a tight market, especially for bigs. For his sake, I hope the 28-year-old O’Quinn already has assurances from other teams. He might get a similar salary or, more likely, a larger overall guarantee on a multi-year deal. But it’s also possible he comes out behind by testing free agency.