Report: 76ers, Trail Blazers considering claiming Anthony Bennett

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Anthony Bennett reportedly agreed to a buyout with the Timberwolves.

But that won’t make him just a free agent just yet.

A buyout is a player agreeing to reduce his salary guarantee if he clears waivers.

Bennett hasn’t yet cleared waivers. If he does, he’ll become an unrestricted free agent.

But three teams – the 76ers, Trail Blazers and Cavaliers – have the cap room to claim him first.

Adrian Wojnarowski and Shams Charania of Yahoo Sports:

Philadelphia and Portland plan to look carefully at the possibility of claiming Bennett, league sources told Yahoo Sports.

The 76ers would have priority, because they finished with a worse record than the Trail Blazers last season.

I also wouldn’t eliminate the Cavaliers from placing a waiver claim. It’s possible Wojnarowski and Charania just don’t have sources to confirm Cleveland’s interest. But I’d also be surprised if the Cavs claimed Bennett. Though they drafted him No. 1 in 2013, they’ve since replaced the general manager who made that selection, Chris Grant, with David Griffin.

If any team gets Bennett on waivers, it would inherit his existing contract – a $5,803,560 guaranteed salary for this season and a $7,318,289 team option for 2016-17 that must be decided by this Nov. 2. It’s unlikely anyone would exercise Bennett’s option, but it’s nice to know you could if he has an amazing preseason.

Philadelphia, deep in the rebuilding process, is the type of team to take a chance on a young talent like Bennett. He’s just 22, and the consensus rated him in the top 10 of the 2013 draft. In fact, when the 76ers traded Jrue Holiday for the No. 6 pick in 2013 (Nerlens Noel), they reportedly would have done so only if Bennett, Noel or Victor Oladipo were available.

Portland is also rebuilding, and two of its assistant coaches – Jay Triano (head) and David Vanterpool (assistant) – coached Canada in the FIBA Americas Championship this summer. Maybe they could help Bennett recreate his success in that tournament.

Bennett would probably get less than his current deal on the open market, but then he could pick any team. The 76ers and Trail Blazers must weigh whether getting Bennett without negotiating is worth the additional cost.

I think he might be, but it comes down to a question Philadelphia’s and Portland’s front offices are much more equipped to handle: How else would they use the cap room?

Colorado junior forward Tyler Bey declares for NBA Draft

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University of Colorado forward Tyler Bey has declared for the 2020 NBA Draft:

The junior averaged 13.8 points, 9.0 rebounds and 1.1 blocks per game for the Buffaloes. Bey shot 53% from the field overall and 74.3% at the free throw line.

Bey also extended his range a bit in his third year at Colorado. He knocked down 13-of-31 three-pointers (41.9%) on the season. At just six-foot-seven, he’ll need to be able to score from behind the arc to find a place in the NBA.

Most draft analysts have Bey pegged as an early second-round pick. Some thought he could play his way into the back-end of the first-round with strong pre-draft workouts. With the pre-draft process up in the air, NBA front offices may have to make their decisions based on what they’ve already seen in person and on tape.

Stephon Marbury has arrangement to procure 10 million medical masks for New York

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Former NBA player Stephon Marbury told The New York Post that he’s arranged a deal to deliver 10 million N95 medical masks to New York. These masks are much-needed among healthcare workers battling the COVID-19 pandemic.

Marbury is having the masks produced at cost in China, where he played the last seven years of his career.

Although Marbury currently lives in Beijing, China, he said “At the end of the day, I am from Brooklyn. This is something that is close and dear to my heart as far as being able to help New York.”

While growing up, Marbury starred at Abraham Lincoln High School in Brooklyn and on New York City’s famed playgrounds. After one year at Georgia Tech, Marbury left for the NBA. The high-scoring guard played for five teams during his 13-year NBA career, including his hometown New York Knicks.

After sitting out for two seasons, Marbury signed to play for the Beijing Ducks in 2011. The move was initially seen as a way for Marbury to prove he could still play at an NBA level. Instead, Beijing became home-away-from home for the New Yorker.

Marbury averaged 21.6 points per game in 271 contests spread over seven seasons with the Ducks.

Georgetown sophomore Mac McClung declares for 2020 NBA Draft

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Georgetown sophomore Mac McClung told ESPN Jonathan Givony that he’s declaring for the 2020 NBA Draft.

McClung first came to national prominence when his high school highlights blew up on YouTube:

In his second season at Georgetown, McClung averaged 15.7 points and 1.4 steals per game. A foot injury in late-January kept McClung out of the lineup for nearly a month. He returned for one game in late-February, but played just eight minutes off the Hoyas’ bench.

The six-foot-two guard is known for his deep shooting range and his highlight dunks. McClung’s shot is inconsistent however, as he shot under 40% in each of his first two seasons at Georgetown. McClung’s defense also needs work.

McClung projects to be a point guard in the NBA, due to his size. To make it as a lead guard, he’ll need to work on his ballhandling and playmaking. With those question marks, McClung is seen as a stretch to be drafted in the second round.

McClung stated he’s signing with an NBA/NCAA approved agent. That will allow him to keep his college eligibility as he goes through the pre-draft process.

Report: NBA Together asks players who have recovered from COVID-19 to consider donating plasma

Jazz stars Donovan Mitchell and Rudy Gobert
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Shams Charania of The Athletic reports that the NBA Together initiative is asking NBA players who have recovered from coronavirus to consider donating plasma:

NBA Together was created in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak, as the NBA suspended the 2019-20 season.

One of the efforts NBA Together is supporting is the COVID-19 Convalescent Plasma Project. This project has brought together top medical specialists to determine if plasma donations could help in treating coronavirus.

Several NBA players have tested positive for COVID-19. This group includes Rudy Gobert and Donovan Mitchell of the Utah Jazz, Kevin Durant of the Brooklyn Nets, Marcus Smart of the Boston Celtics and Christian Wood of the Detroit Pistons. All players reported either feeling no symptoms or have recovered from the affliction.