May 27, 2016 | 4:23 pm EDT Update
Batum’s agent had previously indicated that his client, a free agent who just had a terrific first season with the Charlotte Hornets, would be in the United States resolving his NBA future and that the paperwork would not be finalized in time for him to play. However, it is understood that the French player and the Hornets will quickly agree terms on a new deal and that could could give France enough time to obtain insurance for Batum and allow him to take part in some of the OQT games.
Cavs big man Tristan Thompson called it the “most important game of the season,” but the reality is that they’ll have another chance at home if they lose. Surely there must be some part of them that knows this game is not essential, right? “No, [expletive] no,” Cleveland forward Richard Jefferson said. “[Expletive] no. Not a chance. Not a chance. No. We want to win every game. We’ve been trying to win every road game. This series is the first road games we’ve lost. You gotta be greedy in the playoffs. That’s something that I’ve learned in 15 years. Don’t [think], ‘Oh, we have home court.’ Be greedy. If you’re not greedy, it’s going to come back and bite you in your tail.
The All-NBA Teams are all-American for the first time since 2000. The league announced the voting results today and the foreign player receiving the most endorsements was Dominican big man Al Horford, who finished at No. 19, 27 points short of making the Third Team.
The Knicks plan to acquire a pick in June’s draft. The best-case scenario would probably be a late first-round pick but second-round is more likely. The club has shown interest in several players in recent weeks, including Indiana guard Yogi Ferrell, who has a workout scheduled with the club next month. New York also interviewed Kansas guard Wayne Selden at the NBA Draft Combine in Chicago and has expressed interest in him as the draft approaches, according to league sources.
When these guys get rolling, there’s little opposing defenses can do to stop them. And the work ethic of both players is legendary. In his workout in Anaheim, California, on Tuesday, Hield certainly looked the part as a shooter. He rarely missed shots, regardless of where he was on the floor. When the NBA 3-point line became boring (a line that is typically intimidating for college shooters, regardless of their skill), he was comfortable stepping back another five feet and hitting 20-of-25 from “Curry range” in one drill. And Hield did it with all the confidence that he showed at Oklahoma last season. He believes he can be special; great shooters need that level of confidence.
May 27, 2016 | 1:53 pm EDT Update
It was a clip of Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green nearly nailing a vertical standing split while attempting a baby hook over Oklahoma City guard Russell Westbrook during the fourth quarter of last night’s Western Conference Finals. Green flailed his right foot so high that he inadvertently kicked the 6-4 point guard near his chin. When I showed the video to other players, their mouths dropped to the floor, including the mouth of LeBron James. But there were no comments to follow. Each player just handed my phone back and shook his head in disbelief, except for J.R. Smith. “[The league’s] not going to do anything, though,” he said.
Jones is still miffed at the way his situation was handled. Earlier in the week James was asked for his take on Green being allowed to continue playing following the Adams kick. “I have no opinion on it,” he said. “[The league] didn’t ask me my opinion on Dahntay’s play, so they definitely don’t want to hear my opinion on Draymond, so it doesn’t matter.”