Report: Timberwolves, Anthony Bennett agree to buyout

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Anthony Bennett and the Timberwolves were reportedly talking about a buyout.

It appears the talking is done.

Shams Charania of Yahoo Sports:

Bennett will go on waivers, where three teams have enough cap room or a trade exception large enough to claim his $5,803,560 salary – the 76ers, Trail Blazers and Cavaliers. If Bennett clears waivers, he’ll become an unrestricted free agent.

It’ll be interesting to see how much money Bennett sacrificed for his freedom. He could have waited for the Timberwolves to waive him without a buyout and collected his full salary for this season, but by the time that happened, other teams could have filled out. Minnesota might have also kept him and buried him behind Karl-Anthony Towns, Kevin Garnett, Adreian Payne and Nemanja Bjelica.

This is a huge fall for the No. 1 pick in the 2013 NBA draft. Bennett hasn’t lived up to expectations – even the more moderate ones by the many outlets that ranked him around fifth in his class, let alone those by the top-picking Cavaliers. He settles for far too many long 2s, squandering his 6-foot-8 frame and athleticism.

But he’s just 22, and teams should line up to take a flyer on him on a minimum contract. Some might even offer a little more to separate themselves from all the suitors – at least if he clears waivers.

The Timberwolves now have 15 players with guaranteed salaries, making it easier to trim their roster to the regular-season limit of 15. Hope they’re happy keeping Damjan Rudez and Tayshaun Prince over Bennett.

Somehow, Ja Morant highlights keep getting better (video)

Ja Morant
Joe Murphy/NBAE via Getty Images
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Ja Morant is special.

He has already produced a few amazing plays during his rookie year. He has even taken over full games with his flashy play.

But the performance he put on during the Grizzlies’ win over the Cavaliers last night was something else.

Thrice, Morant elevated for show-stopping dunks. He scored only once. But each time, something incredible happened.

First, Morant way up to catch a lob from Jae Crowder, adjusted mid-air and found Jaren Jackson Jr. for a dunk:

Then, less than a minute later, Morant finished a lob from Crowder with a beautiful one-handed slam:

Finally, Morant leaped to posterize Larry Nance Jr., realized that wouldn’t work then threw a spinning behind-the-back pass to Jackson. Though Alfonzo McKinnie blocked Jackson, Morant’s move was dazzling:

If Morant is going to keep putting on shows like this during games, maybe we can forgive him for skipping the dunk contest.

Trae Young gets ankles absolutely destroyed by Dejounte Murray (video)

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The Hawks got Trae Young his desired help, trading for Jeff Teague.

Maybe Young will do his part and step up on defense.

That didn’t happen on this possession against Spurs guard Dejounte Murry.

At least Young continued his breakout season on the other end, scoring 31 points and dishing nine assists in Atlanta’s rare victory in San Antonio.

Tristan Thompson slaps Jae Crowder’s rear end, gets ejected (video)

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What is it about Cleveland athletes slapping butts and getting in trouble?

Browns wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. faces a simple battery charge for slapping a police officer’s backside in LSU’s locker room after the College Football Playoff National Championship.

Last night, Cavaliers center Tristan Thompson got ejected for slapping Grizzlies forward Jae Crowder‘s behind.

Thompson and Crowder got double technical fouls earlier in the game. So, Thompson got ejected with a tech for this incident between free throws.

Though the two are former Cleveland teammates, Crowder didn’t look amused. Crowder doesn’t play.

The Cavs rallied without Thompson, but Memphis won, 113-109.

Kyle Lowry flings in wild 3-pointer (video)

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Kyle Lowry had the ball in his left hand when he felt contact. Not only did he try to sell a foul by flailing his arms, the right-hander tried to draw a shooting foul by hurling an off-balance 31-footer toward the basket.

No continuation. No whistle at all.

But Lowry made the shot, anyway.

Lowry and the Raptors will take it, but they didn’t need a break like that against the Wizards’ dismal defense last night. Toronto won, 140-111.