HoopsHype rumors

July 20, 2013 | 06:54 PM ET Update

Free-agent 7-footer Byron Mullens has reached agreement on a two-year, $2 million contract with the Los Angeles Clippers, league sources told Yahoo! Sports. Mullens will hold a player's option for the second year of the deal, a source said. Yahoo! Sports

After the trade of starting center Kosta Koufos and firing of head coach George Karl, Denver Nuggets center JaVale McGee is going to have a lot more on-court responsibility this season. This is a very exciting development, one that promises to usher in a new age of basketball innovation that will be so next-level that people may not understand it fully until 50 years from now. JaVale is taking this new directive seriously posting videos to his Vine account proving that he takes no days off (“NO DAYS OFF! NO DAYS OFF! NO DAYS OFF!”) and it spending his summer running dribbling drills around his house. Which seems like a pretty awesome place, by the way. For The Win

Retired NBA star Yao Ming has a thriving start-up in the Bay Area. It's just a small Napa Valley winery, but it generates enormous demand and a bountiful return on investment. For Yao, it's another slam dunk -- off the court and in the Napa Valley vineyards. He started his boutique winery a couple of years ago. He leases vineyards and production space at a custom crush facility in St. Helena. His wines are sold almost exclusively in China. The rapidly emerging middle class just can't get enough if Yao Family Wines. abc.com

July 20, 2013 | 04:34 PM ET Update

Marc Stein: Hearing: Denver has emerged as new threat in Mike Miller chase along w/OKC & MEM. Nuggets have wing PT to offer after Iguodala/Brewer exits Twitter @ESPNSteinLine

Now, the 26-year-old is back with the Lakers, playing with their NBA Summer League team in Las Vegas. He’ll likely attend training camp with L.A. and have another shot at making their regular season roster. “I think they’re interested,” Douglas-Roberts said of the Lakers. “They were interested last year, but things happen. It was a numbers game, which I fully understand. But I definitely think this is good a fit and it’s why I’m back this summer. “I’ve gotten great feedback. We had a great week of work and practice. We were doing two-a-days for four days straight. I feel like I practiced well, making guys better and getting guys involved. So far, I haven’t gotten anything but positive feedback.” HoopsWorld

Charles Barkley has never been one to hold his tongue. So it should come as no surprise that he had an opinion Friday about the 76ers remaining without a head coach. Friday marked the 92d day since Doug Collins resigned. "I think that's one of the silliest things that I've seen in sports in a long time," the former Sixer said on Comcast SportsNet's 'Philly Sports Talk.' "I'm in Philly during the summer as you know, and I'm watching and reading every day ... To not have a coach under contract by now, I think that's a joke. I don't know what they are waiting on. "You're playing summer league games, people need to know who's in charge, they get players who are playing in the summer leage, they got assistant coaches coaching the team. You just can't bring somebody in, and him have instant credibility. He has to build rapport with the players." Philadelphia Inquirer

LeGarie has helped turn the Las Vegas summer league into an event that keeps the league in the headlines well into July. What started as a six-team gathering that was thrown together on the fly in 2004 has blossomed into a 22-team assembly that includes a tournament, owners’ meetings and one of the few chances for agents and representatives from all 30 teams to meet in one place to hash out contracts, discuss trades and lay the groundwork for future deals. “We want it so that people know that there’s great basketball, but there’s also a way to break down the walls so that people can reacquaint, develop new acquaintances or in some cases repair old acquaintances,” LeGarie said. “There was a lot of face to face. We created something like the winter baseball meetings, where people can come in, converse, do business, and then get down to the business of basketball.” New York Times

LeGarie had been lobbying the league to bring the summer league to Las Vegas for a centralized event. Several satellite leagues had been run in the past in places like Colorado and Boston and on the campus of Loyola Marymount in California. But the fractured nature of the meetings made it difficult for schedules to be coordinated, and the door opened for LeGarie in 2004. Boston hosted the Democratic National Convention, leaving a dearth of hotel rooms for the teams scheduled to participate in the summer league. New York Times

July 20, 2013 | 01:52 PM ET Update

Now that what once seemed impossible to Celtics fans—Paul Pierce in another team’s uniform—has become a reality, it is a good time to consider what the guy drafted one pick ahead of Pierce would look like elsewhere. That would be Dirk Nowitzki, and though there are no indications that a trade of the league’s best-known German is nigh, a Dirk Deal would no doubt be in the best interest of all involved. Sporting News

But if the Bulls can pay Mirotic enough to have him pay the buyout himself (because it will be three years since he had been drafted, Mirotic won’t be tied to the NBA’s rookie salary scale), they will get a versatile big man who shot 41.7 percent from the 3-point line in Spain last year, and his perimeter shooting would pair nicely with Noah’s frenetic interior play. “He has a big-time skill set,” one scout said. “When they drafted him (in 2011), it was hard to tell how he would develop, if he would bulk up and become a useful big man or if he was going to stay on the perimeter and be a Bargnani-type. But he has come along really nicely, he is an effort guy and he has made big leaps in terms of what he can do in the post.” Sporting News

July 20, 2013 | 12:17 PM ET Update

Backup point guard Brian Roberts hopes he did enough in summer league for the New Orleans Pelicans to pick up the option on his contract for this upcoming season that could increase his salary to $788,872 from last season’s $473,604. Roberts struggled with a three-of-14 shooting performance in Friday night’s 78-77 loss to the Washington Wizards but he made a halfcourt shot at the buzzer. Roberts came into Friday’s game averaging 14.5 points after four games. ``I thought I played pretty well,’’ Roberts said. ``There were times when I didn’t play as well as I wanted to, but overall I thought I gave the effort when I was out there. Mainly, I wanted to show that I could run the team and get guys in the right positions.’’ New Orleans Times-Picayune

Forward Lance Thomas also is hoping the Pelicans will extend him a contract offer. The Pelicans waived Thomas last Wednesday to clear salary cap space for the franchise to sign center Greg Stiemsma. If the Pelicans had not waived Thomas, he would have been guaranteed to earn $884,293 this upcoming season. New Orleans Times-Picayune

Other items that commanded top dollar in the sale, conducted by New Jersey-based Goldin Auctions, included Bryant's 2000 NBA All-Star ring ($55,597), and two of his game-used high school uniforms ($50,150 and $41,694). The items, consigned by his parents, turned into a legal battle when Bryant found out they were selling the nearly 100 items that he said were not theirs to sell. Documents provided to the auction company by the Bryant's had said otherwise. Eventually, a settlement was reached that resulted in about 90 percent of the items being pulled out of the auction. ESPN.com

The ex-wife of Miami Heat star Dwyane Wade on Friday took to the streets to get her side of the story told — literally sitting on the sidewalk outside the Daley Center with a sign. “NBA Miami Heat star, mother of his children on the streets,” Siohvaughn Funches-Wade’s sign read. She said she was driven to the act after a frustrating several days in court this week, as the post-divorce saga between the one-time high-school sweethearts continues to play out. Chicago Sun-Times


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July 20, 2013 | 10:16 AM ET Update

Artur Barbosa, Leandro's brother and agent, said he negociated with the Houston Rockets, but no agreement was reached. Currently, the player is considering an offer from the Dallas Mavericks to stay in the NBA. "The Chicago Bulls also showed interest, but Dallas is better. Hopefully it will work out," Artur said. Terra Brasil

The Houston Rockets are a "leading contender" to land center Marcus Camby according to his agent Rick Kaplan if he becomes a free agent on Sunday, which is expected. The Toronto Raptors, who acquired Camby in a trade with the New York Knicks last week, bought out the remaining $7.5 million on his contract and placed him on waivers on Friday. "If Marcus becomes a free agent as we expect on Sunday the Rockets are a leading contender for where he'll end up next season," Kaplan said in an interview with FOX 26 Sports FOX 26 Sports

An NBA source said General Manager Dell Demps has not met with Oden and his agent, Mike Conley Sr., in Las Vegas, where a Pelicans team has been participating in the Summer League, but the team does have interest in Oden. The Pelicans, Dallas Mavericks and Sacramento Kings reportedly have meetings scheduled with Oden. The Advocate

Stephen Pina, the agent for undrafted guard Khalif Wyatt, said Friday that he has had "no contact with the Sixers" about a 2013-14 contract for the former Temple and Norristown High star. "Still early," said Pina via text message. Wyatt averaged a Sixers-high 13.8 points and shot 45.8 percent from the field in the five-game Orlando Pro Summer League earlier this month. "A lot of teams have been calling," Pina said. "He played well down there." phillyburbs.com

He's considered a vast offensive upgrade to World Peace, whose 9.94 points in four seasons with the Lakers came on 40.2 percent shooting. But World Peace's absence coupled with Dwight Howard's departure to the Houston Rockets left the Lakers vulnerable on defense. World Peace downplayed that reality. "Things weren't clicking," World Peace reasoned for the Lakers' first-round sweep to the San Antonio Spurs. "I always knew Dwight was going to Houston because things weren't clicking. Once Kobe (Bryant) said he can come back for three years, I knew Dwight was going to Houston." Daily Bulletin

At 6-foot-5 — and he’ll beef up his 195-pound frame — McLemore has the size coaches love at the 2, and he showed off his ability to run the floor and finish with thunderous jams that lifted special guest DeMarcus Cousins out of his seat on the bench. More impressive was the patience he showed on offense to put the ball on the floor and maneuver to get his shot. He and impressive second-round pick, point guard Ray McCallum played well together with several of McCallum’s 11 assists (with 12 points) went to McLemore. “He’s a great kid and he’s working his butt off,” Malone said. “He’s given great focus and he’s willing to learn. At breakfast with him [Thursday], the big thing was keep your head up, don’t get down on yourself; we still love you, we still believe in you and I wanted him to come out here the last game and just be aggressive and play confidently, and he showed that in the third quarter. NBA.com

Even via text message, Taj Gibson’s disappointment came through loud and clear. The Bulls’ forward will miss USA Basketball’s minicamp that begins next Monday in Las Vegas after spraining his ankle during a workout on Wednesday. This would’ve marked Gibson’s second straight summer of participation in the Team USA program, which featured him scrimmaging against the men’s senior national team last summer as part of the U.S. select squad. “That was such a great experience,” Gibson said. “My ankle isn’t too bad but I don’t want to make it worse because I want to be fresh for training camp and the season. I’m just real bummed because I felt ready and had had a great few weeks of workouts.” Chicago Tribune

After a grueling week of court developments in which Funches-Wade sought to fire her attorney — her legal representation paid for by Wade, she has gone through 12 lawyers — and a week in which she was arrested by Circuit Court Judge Thomas Carr for appearing late in court, she’d had it. Leaving Friday’s hearing, Funches-Wade plopped down on a mat outside the downtown courts building, with her sign and her sister and mother at her side supporting her. “Dwyane Wade is offering to pay only some of what he owes me if I sign an agreement never again to discuss what happened in our marriage or with our children. I refuse,” the ex-wife said. “I finally told Carr I just wanted to end the case and keep my freedom and my voice. I told him I didn’t want anything from Dwyane. The judge demanded the trial continue. I couldn’t believe it.” Chicago Sun-Times

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