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Report: Furkan Korkmaz requested trade from 76ers

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The 76ers declined Furkan Korkmaz‘s third-year team option for next season, making him an unrestricted free agent next summer.

He apparently wants to leave Philadelphia even sooner.

Keith Pompey of The Inquirer:

Sources have said the Turkish player requested to be traded because of lack of playing time.

“If I’m not getting minutes here, I just want to look for other options,” he said.  “I don’t know what’s the options right now, just try to be on the court.”

“I feel like I didn’t really have that opportunity,” he said of receiving a fair opportunity. “Last year, I was injured for a long time and this year just a couple of games in the garbage time. It wasn’t like good rotation minutes for me. That’s why I feel like I didn’t get that opportunity to show on the court what I got.”

This is very normal. Most players who aren’t in the rotation believe they didn’t get a fair shake and want to be traded.

From the outside, it seems Korkmaz has gotten a fair opportunity. Philadelphia trying to win now. He’s a 21-year-old who must get stronger. It’s a tough fit.

But he possesses intriguing tools, and teams looking more toward the future could use him.

The catch: Any team that trades for Korkmaz and ends the season with him could re-sign him for a starting salary only up to his declined option amount ($2,033,160). So, if a team gets Korkmaz and he breaks out, that team would have a significant disadvantage in keeping him. Better to just wait and try to sign him next summer.

The 76ers got themselves into this predicament by declining Korkmaz’s option. Perhaps, waiting until the Oct. 31 deadline and hoping for the best was their best course. Just because it backfired doesn’t mean it was the wrong plan.

But there probably would have been a better trade market for Korkmaz, a first-round pick just two years ago, earlier in the summer. Perhaps, a team would have traded for Korkmaz intending to exercise his third-year option.

Except Philadelphia didn’t have a general manager throughout the offseason after ousting Bryan Colangelo. This seems like the type of non-move that could slip through the cracks.

So, Korkmaz might be stuck – unless his expiring contract proves useful in a trade or he finds a team that believes in him, but not too much.

Why does Kevin Durant respond on social media? “I’m qualified to talk about basketball”

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Every NBA player gets ripped on social media, even the guys who are not on social media. Most of the time players just ignore it, the way they ignore fans yelling stuff courtside or distant family asking them for money.

Kevin Durant, however, gets into it sometimes, even with national media members (and even had a burner account). Which always becomes a thing.

Why? Why not just ignore it? From Durant himself at practice Friday, via NBC Sports Bay Area.

“Because I have social media,” Durant said Friday… “I mean, I’m a human being with a social media account. I could see if I ventured off into like politics, culinary arts or music and gave my input, but I’m sticking to something that I know. You know what I’m saying? This is all I know. I’m actually talking about stuff that I know. I’m qualified to talk about basketball.

“So when I respond to something, especially if it’s about me personally, of course I’m going to tell you if you wrong about it. When I’m on the training table getting treatment on my calf and I see a tweet that come by and I disagree — I don’t talk to people because I’m worried about what they say, it’s just that I’m interested. So if you talking about in-game or the NBA Finals, they’re the same to me, you know what I’m saying?”

Durant seems to have more time on hands to get into these spats while he is out injured. Which likely will last into the start of the NBA Finals.

Does this mean the Drake/Durant beef is inevitable?

LeBron likes Instagram of Kyrie Irving in Lakers jersey, Internet goes berserk

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The Lakers landing Kyrie Irving in free agency this summer might be their best realistic option. It’s far, far from a lock — the Knicks, and yes Celtics, will make their pitch, too — but reuniting the pair that won a title in Cleveland is on the Lakers’ radar. (Insert your own, “you know who should coach this team” Tyronn Lue joke here.)

Fueling the speculation, LeBron James and Irving were seen hanging out together at a club in Los Angeles recently. Then Friday, this happened: Cuffthelegend posted this on Instagram and LeBron liked it.

View this post on Instagram

I like how this feels

A post shared by Savage Season 365 (@cuffsthelegend) on

(For the record, Cuffthelegend gets some stuff right, he’s not a guy who posts stuff out of nowhere.)

Of course, NBA Twitter and the web responded to this in its usual measured, thoughtful way. Some Lakers fans think the deal is done, others mock the idea altogether.

Two thoughts on Irving and the Lakers:

• Multiple reports say Irving is open to it. Irving also has a strong relationship with Kevin Durant, and Boston still plans to trade for Anthony Davis and then try to re-sign Irving (even if Boston fans are done with Kyrie). The only person who knows which way Irving is leaning right now is Irving, and there’s a good chance he changes his mind in the next five weeks anyway.

• If the Lakers are going to land a star free agent this summer, it will be because LeBron was an active recruiter. These elite players have options, and the Laker front office is not inspiring confidence of late, it will be on LeBron to win guys over.

 

Jeremy Lin: Milwaukee security guard asked for my pass to Raptors team bus

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Jeremy Lin has discussed people not believing he plays in the NBA.

It apparently still happens.

Lin, whose Raptors are playing the Bucks in the Eastern Conference finals, via Bill Michaels Sports Talk Network:

After Game 2 in Milwaukee, I was trying to get to the team bus and one of the dudes in the Milwaukee arena just screams at me. He’s like, “Where do you think you’re going?!” And I’m like, “Uh, I’m trying to get to the team bus.” He’s like, “What?! Where’s your pass?” I was like, “I don’t have a pass. I don’t know what you’re talking about. I don’t have a pass.”

This happens in a lot of arenas, so I just kind of go with the flow.

It’s a fine line. Lin shouldn’t be profiled as a non-athlete because he’s Asian-American. Arena staffers should keep everyone safe by stopping unauthorized people.

PBT Podcast: What’s next for Boston, Philadelphia, Denver? (And some playoff talk)

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Will Kyrie Irving stay in Boston? If not, what is Plan B?

Is Jimmy Butler back in Philadelphia next season? If he is will Tobias Harris be back?

What are the next steps to turn Denver into a contender?

I get into all of those things with the wise Keith Smith of Yahoo Sports (and Celtics Blog, and Real GM), we break down those three teams recently turned out of the playoffs. We also start off talking about teams actually in the playoffs, particularly Toronto’s comeback in the Eastern Conference Finals, and how those teams can take advantage against the Warriors with Kevin Durant out.

As always, you can check out the podcast below, listen and subscribe via iTunes at ApplePodcasts.com/PBTonNBC, subscribe via the fantastic Stitcher app, check us out on Google play, or check out the NBC Sports Podcast homepage and archive at Art19.

We want your questions for future podcasts, and your comments, so please email us at PBTpodcast@gmail.com.