Jeremy Evans

Report: Pacers reach two-year, $3.6 million deal with Kevin Seraphin

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Indiana already had a full roster of 15 players with guaranteed contracts.

However, after working him out, the Pacers decided they couldn’t pass on adding the depth of Kevin Seraphin to their front line. So they inked him to a two-year deal (team option the second), reports The Vertical’s Shams Charania.

Seraphin is an undersized center at 6’9″ who was solid but unspectacular as a member of the Wizards the first five seasons he was in the league. He has no shooting range, but he can pass, is tough, and is someone teams can trust for 15 minutes a night. At least he was until last season in New York. Seraphin had his worst NBA season as a Knick, shooting 41 percent overall and he suddenly struggled to finish at the rim (he shot just 53.7 percent inside the restricted area). Seraphin is also a physical man defender inside who can step out a little on the perimeter and be effective.

The Pacers already have a full roster so they need to trade one of their guaranteed contracts, or they need to cut someone — maybe Jeremy Evans or maybe Rakeem Christmas. But someone making north of $1 million is going to get paid not to play.

Seraphin is not going to get a lot of run in Indy, he’s an insurance policy. The Pacers will start Myles Turner at the five and bring Al Jefferson off the bench behind him. Seraphin will get the minutes that are left.

Report: Dallas trading former slam dunk contest champion Jeremy Evans to Indiana

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Jeremy Evans can leap out of the building. That’s how he won the Slam Dunk Contest a few years back.

However, his game has never evolved much beyond that. That leaping ability gets him some highlight blocks and a few buckets around the rim, but he struggles to defend fours (too thin, gets muscled) and can’t space the floor on offense. Then he missed a chunk of last season after a shoulder injury.

The Mavericks wanted to move on, so Indiana will roll the dice on Evans, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of The Vertical at Yahoo Sports.

Evans is on a minimum deal, so Indiana isn’t taking much of a risk.

That said, with Myles Turner, Thaddeus Young, and Paul George along the front line (with some depth behind them), it’s hard to imagine Evans getting much run. He’s going to have to take a leap forward now or he will be playing overseas soon.

Five Takeaways from NBA Sunday: Kobe Bryant passes Jerry West in assists

Associated Press
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I know, it didn’t feel like a Sunday for a lot of you because you have Monday off for Martin Luther King Jr. Day — which has a full slate of NBA games itself. But the NBA kept rolling along Sunday, here is what you should know from that slate of games.

1) Kobe Bryant passes Jerry West to be second on Lakers’ assist list. At this point, it’s just a season of milestones for Kobe and the Lakers. Some good, some bad (like the team being on pace for its worst finish ever). One of the good ones came up Sunday night in what was otherwise another forgettable Laker loss (this time to the Rockets) — Kobe passed the logo Jerry West to move into second place in assists in Lakers’ franchise history (6,244 to 6,238). Bryant has long been proud of his passing and thought it an underrated part of his game. It was — when he was dishing. Bryant could be a gifted passer, when willing (he often seemed in scoring mode or facilitating mode, but those were not always blended in the same stretch). However, teammates had to earn his trust to get those dimes. Otherwise, Kobe would just shoot. He had enough trust over the years to rack up a lot of assists.

2) Will Barton making plays in Denver. When you talk about guys up for the Most Improved Player this season, the list starts with Portland’s C.J. McCollum, but Denver’s Will Barton has to make the list. Denver upset the Pacers Sunday night in a what apparently was a tribute to the Doug Moe era Nuggets, 129-126. Barton had 21 points and was making plays — like a 360 layup.

Or just beating the shot clock.

3) Thunder keep rolling along.  On the season, the Oklahoma City Thunder have a net differential of +9.2 (points per 100 possessions over opponents), and in their last 10 games that is +9.5. They are clearly one of the Top 5 teams in the NBA (however you wish to rank them) and that train just kept on rolling on Sunday with a 99-74 win against a quality Miami team. The real hero of the game for OKC was Serge Ibaka, who completely outplayed Chris Bosh, scored 19 points, and created matchup nightmares for the Heat when the Thunder went small. However, as always, the Thunder’s success starts with Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook. Durant had 24 points and 10 boards, while Westbrook had a triple-double with 13 points, 10 rebounds, and 15 assists. When the Thunder’s big three are clicking, they can beat anyone.

4) Spurs win 11th in a row, knocking off Mavericks with relative ease. When the Spurs offense is clicking as it has recently — like it did against Dallas on Sunday — there’s no stopping the Spurs. After the past couple seasons of them being a Tony Parker-led motion offense, we tend to think of San Antonio as a system team. And they are to a degree. But with the emergence of Kawhi Leonard and others, they have athleticism, too. Plus now with LaMarcus Aldridge they have a guy they can just throw the ball to half-a-dozen times a game, isolate him, say “go to work” and he’ll get them a bucket. They can beat you a variety of ways and the Mavericks Sunday had answers for none of them, which is why San Antonio won 112-83.

Plus we had Boban Marjanovic not only throwing it down on Jeremy Evans, but then staring him down.

5) James Harden gets 31 against the Lakers. While we mentioned at the top of this list Kobe reaching another milestone, the game itself was not as interesting. Los Angeles put up 57 first-half points and still trailed by three because they couldn’t get a stop and the Rockets’ offense was knocking down everything. Then behind a 10-point quarter from James Harden, the Rockets pulled away and went on to an easy win. Harden finished with 31 points on the night and he didn’t even play the fourth quarter.

Spurs’ Boban Marjanovic dunks on Jeremy Evans, stares him down (VIDEO)

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Boban Marjanovic may be NBA twitter’s new favorite player. Because he’s 7’3″ and just massive as a person. Because he’s named Boban. And because he’s got a little fire in his game.

You could see that when he dunked on Dallas’ Jeremy Evans on Sunday. Then Boban stared him down. Which earned him a taunting technical.

I’m not sure exactly how good Marjanovic will turn out to be, but this feels like it’s going to be another Spurs find who turns out to be a valuable contributor.