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Report: Magic apply to exclude Timofey Mozgov’s cap hit due to career-ending injury

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The Magic have gotten expensive.

Perhaps, they’ll get some relief with the salary cap and luxury tax.

After Timofey Mozgov missed all of last season due to a knee injury, Orlando waived and stretched him this summer. He counts $5,573,334 on the books this season and each of the next two seasons.

Mozgov signed with Khimki Moscow this summer. However, he hasn’t played in the Russian team’s first nine games.

In August, Mozgov said, via TASS:

“There is some progress in my knee injury recovery, although not as speedy as it should be since it is an old-time trauma,” Mozgov said in an interview with TASS. “I don’t want to make wrongful accusations in regard to American doctors, but their treatment of my injury was not quite correct.”

“It seems to me at the moment that they have been treating me based on a wrong diagnosis,” he continued. “Nothing terrible has happened, but the injury has aggravated as the time went by.”

Mozgov’s pain could become the Magic’s gain.

Marc Stein of The New York Times:

Orlando has applied to the league seeking to have Timofey Mozgov’s remaining salary … removed from the books under career-ending injury and illness provisions, league sources say

Mozgov will still get the $16.72 million the Magic owe him. The big question: Will it count toward the salary cap and luxury tax?

An NBA Fitness to Play panel will rule on Mozgov’s health. The Collective Bargaining Agreement requires players to cooperate, including by “appearing at the reasonably scheduled place and time for examination by the jointly-selected physician.”

The NBA must also determine Mozgov’s career-ending injury “became known or reasonably should have become known” while with Orlando. After his last game, Mozgov got traded from the Nets to the Hornets to the Magic in the 2018 offseason. Corroborating evidence for Orlando: Though he didn’t play, Mozgov was available for a 2018 Magic preseason game, according to Dante Marchitelli of Fox Sports Florida.

Mozgov is 33. He could certainly be finished, and perhaps Orlando knows more than is publicly available. Or maybe this is just a stab at gaining flexibility.

The Magic could use it. They’re near the luxury-tax line and could be again next season and maybe even the following season. Orlando could just pay the tax in future seasons, but that seems unlikely. Getting Mozgov’s salary excluded could open the door for using the mid-level exception and upgrading the roster.

Marcus Smart announces he recovered, cleared of coronavirus

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Marcus Smart stepped forward and self-identified as having tested positive for the coronavirus. He wasn’t showing any symptoms and went into self-quarantine, and last we heard was doing well.

Sunday, Smart said that two days ago he was cleared and has fully recovered from the virus.

Most importantly, this is excellent news for Smart and his friends and family (and, by extension, the Celtics). His health is the most important thing in this story.

The NBA has asked recovered players to donate plasma because scientists are hoping to use the blood — which has developed immunities — to help create a vaccine or medicine to slow COVID-19. It’s optional, but the league is encouraging players to help.

There have been 10 players and five NBA off-court staff — including Knicks owner James Dolan — who have tested positive for the disease. Fortunately, none of them have shown any advanced symptoms that required hospitalization.

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.