Darren Wolfson: Royce White has more than a LAC offer for summer league. I have his comeback story at 10:22 on @KSTP. Talked w/ him & mentor Chris Carr.
August 27, 2015 | 8:08 pm EDT Update
There are rumblings that agent Rich Paul could deliver another client to his hometown team in the near future. Several league executives believe Canadian Tristan Thompson may head north to Toronto in the summer of 2016 if he signs his one-year, $6.8 million qualifying offer with the Cleveland Cavaliers. “I always thought he was going to end up (in Toronto) this year,” one Eastern Conference general manager told SheridanHoops. “There’s going to be so much money next year so I think he will get it.”
It’s also worth noting that Cory Joseph and Thompson are friends who have played together during their AAU, high school and college days. The rumblings I’ve detected are caused in part by the fact that both players are represented by Paul. With that in mind, there is the possibility that Thompson could reunite with Joseph in Toronto next summer as the next homecoming story under Paul’s watch.
“(The) Raptors will always have to overpay to keep or gather free agents,” one Western Conference executive told SheridanHoops. “I think he’s a $15 million player even with the new cap,” another Eastern Conference general manager told SheridanHoops. “He might be a good fit with Jonas Valanciunas,” a rival Eastern Conference general manager told SheridanHoops.
Q: Ira, why isn’t Michael Beasley signed yet to a non-guaranteed deal? A: I highly doubt there is much to the Durant angle, or else Durant would have had the Thunder sign Michael a long time ago. I believe it’s more of a case of the Heat wanting to keep that 15th roster spot fluid and available for a developmental player, perhaps one to be school in the D-League. Michael is someone the Heat always could cycle back to if needed.
August 27, 2015 | 7:44 pm EDT Update
Imagine for a moment living in the foodie heaven of New Orleans and getting the green light from a trainer to eat larger portions at meals, including a recommendation to devour more seafood. It sounds like a dream scenario for any weight-conscious New Orleanian, but it’s been a reality this summer for All-NBA Pelicans power forward Anthony Davis. Entering his fourth pro season, the 22-year-old has worked to add more muscle and bulk to his frame. As a result, with training camp one month away, the 6-foot-10 Davis is 12 pounds heavier than he was last season, up to 253, while maintaining 10 percent body fat.
The additional strength should allow Davis to hold his ground better against bigger frontcourt players he faces, some of whom have outweighed or outmuscled him in the past. “He’s going to be stronger, faster, quicker and more explosive this year,” said Sumerlin, who has also emphasized core strength. “He talks about it all the time. He feels it. His trunk stability is a huge thing. Whenever he has been down low with the big guys, he kind of collapses (at his midsection). He’s starting to understand how to use his body more efficiently now.”
What are your go-to pieces when you’re not in uniform? Mike Conley: I love Diesel jeans. I actually enjoy what Diesel Black Gold is doing right now, too. I think Public School might be one of my new favorite designers after their last show.
After spending time in New York for the shows, how does fashion differ in NYC and Memphis? I live nine months in Memphis and then off-season in Columbus, Ohio, where there aren’t even high-end department stores nearby. [My wife] Mary was actually joking that H&M was just coming to Columbus this summer, which tells you that the ability to dress to your individual taste is kind of difficult. I have a stylist, so that helps keep me fashion-forward, but most of the time I can really just go around town in my Grizzlies gear and fit right in! That’s what made [New York Fashion Week: Men’s] so fun—I finally had a reason to push the limits with fashion!
NBA TV will premiere its first-ever Shaq Week featuring a full week of programming starring Shaquille O’Neal, a four-time NBA Champion and current TNT and NBA TV analyst, beginning Monday, August 31. Programming highlights will include some of O’Neal’s top games throughout his career, as selected by the 15-time NBA All-Star, along with Shaqtin’ A Fool and Open Court episodes. NBA TV’s Hardwood Classics will showcase more than 20 of O’Neal’s top performances, with his personal favorites airing nightly at 9 and 11 p.m. ET. Highlighted games include:
Being tall has made Enes Kanter a lot of money — this summer, the 6-foot-11 center signed a four-year, $70 million offer sheet with the Blazers that the Thunder ultimately matched. Even in the NBA, Kanter isn’t usually dwarfed. Which makes this photo he took with the world’s tallest man, 8-foot-3 fellow Turkish native Sultan Kosem, incredible:
Last summer, Thunder star Russell Westbrook proposed to long-time girlfriend Nina Earl. This summer, the two are getting married. TMZ is reporting that Westbrook’s wedding will take place on Saturday in an undisclosed Los Angeles location. It’ll reportedly be a low-key event, which matches Westbrook’s private personality.
Following the news of his passing, several members of the Sacramento Kings family expressed their condolences and shared memories of the man affectionately known by his nickname, Chocolate Thunder. Kings TV Color Analyst Jerry Reynolds “[Darryl] was very likable, he had a big personality and teammates really enjoyed being around him. I don’t think there are very many people who knew him or played with him that didn’t like him. I was at a game as a college coach in Kansas City when he broke a backboard, just shattered it right over the top of Bill Robinzine, and it was a highlight for weeks.”
August 27, 2015 | 6:57 pm EDT Update
“My relationship with them is still great,” Hayes said in an interview with FOX 26 Sports. “‘I’ve got so many good relationships at the Toyota Center and with the Rockets, from the top all the way to the bottom. “This doesn’t change anything. This doesn’t change how I feel about the organization, how I feel about the people in charge of player personnel. “Only thing this does, we’re opening up the door for other possibilities to come.”
That door is open because the Rockets were not able to overcome salary cap issues when trying to sign Hayes according to his agent Calvin Andrews. “They’re telling us they have some limited roster complications and some financial complications that’s going to make it tough for him to be on the roster,” Andrews said.
The Phoenix Suns and Bakersfield Jam have named Chris Jent head coach of the Jam. “It’s an honor to be named Head Coach of the Bakersfield Jam and to be a part of an organization like the Phoenix Suns,” said Jent. “Personally, it’s a great opportunity to once again be a Head Coach and there couldn’t be a better setting in the NBA D-League to help players develop and reach their basketball potential than in Bakersfield. I can’t wait to get into the gym with the team and try to do something special as a group.”
Jahlil Okafor: Darryl Dawkins was an icon, as a Sixer legend but more as a person. He will be truly missed by all. RIP #ChocolateThunder
August 27, 2015 | 4:48 pm EDT Update
The Cavaliers plan to work Kyrie Irving back into playing condition carefully and methodically as he recovers from a left kneecap fracture suffered in Game 1 of the NBA Finals. Multiple league sources say his rehabilitation is going smoothly, but that the chances are slim of him being in the opening-night lineup against the Chicago Bulls on Oct. 27. One source said he could very well be unavailable up until January.
With Irving’s status in doubt for the first couple of months of the season, the Mo Williams acquisition was a tremendous pickup by the Cavs this off-season. The move shored up the team’s point-guard rotation, and when Irving does return, he will be an offensive threat regardless of which player is on the floor. Having two point guards who can score is a luxury not too many teams possess. Irving is attacking his rehab, we’re told, and everyone is optimistic that once he takes the court, he’ll be back to eluding defenders with his crafty dribbling.
Q: Al-Farouq Aminu’s contract: Why is that a good value contract for the Trail Blazers? Olshey: “In two years the cap’s gonna be 108 million dollars. With the cap going up, the deal will be less than what the mid-level will be in two years. His growth as a player was accelerated by playing for Rick Carlisle in Dallas…. We felt he could play multiple roles with LaMarcus or without.”
At around the 20 minute mark of the podcast, Olshey also talked in detail about the type of deals both Aminu and Ed Davis signed. With both contracts being descending deals meaning the money is front-loaded where the players earn less each year after the first year of the contract. Portland did this because they had to max out Damian Lillard who is on an ascending deal, meaning the money is back-loaded and he will earn more in each year of his deal. The Blazers felt this gave them more balance and flexibility if they want to make trades or sign other players down the road. This portion of the podcast is definitely worth listening in on.
In his first live appearance as Dame DOLLA, Portland Trail Blazers guard Damian Lillard took the stage and performed in front of the crowd at Portland’s Holocene. Here’s a quick look at a clip from Lillard’s performance, courtesy of We Out Here Magazine and Team Lillard on Twitter.
Nets Daily: NBA very concerned about sudden death in very tall men. There are studies underway. Ex-Nets Jack Haley, Armon Gilliam, Yinka Dare all gone