HoopsHype Draft rumors

November 18, 2014 Updates
November 17, 2014 Updates

Keeping Saric was never a consideration. Philly knew Orlando wanted and needed Payton, so they basically held him hostage. By the time Orlando drafted Saric they had the deal done with Philly, so that pick was always Philly’s guy, he was never on Orlando’s board. This was sort of like when Charlotte drafted Kobe Bryant — they never considered Kobe for themselves. The trade was done well before the draft and the Lakers told Charlotte who they wanted. The pick was long gone to LA before Kobe was drafted. The same with Saric, Orlando drafted him for Philly. Basketball Insiders

November 15, 2014 Updates

Fast forward two years and English has become an NBA prospect. A dozen NBA teams have been through Iona this fall to watch English, a junior who averaged 17.2 points, 4.3 assists and 3.9 rebounds last season. A native of Wilmington, Del., English is the leading returning scorer on a Gaels team that opens the 2014-15 college season at home on Friday night against Cleveland State and will face Wofford in Spartanburg, S.C., at 7 a.m. on Tuesday on ESPN2. “[The NBA scouts] have all been very excited about how A.J.’s been playing,” Iona head coach Tim Cluess said. “They liked his size for a point guard, being 6-foot-4 and the fact that he can attack the rim the way he does, shoot it the way he does and he’s passing the ball very well. He’s rangy on defense, he’s got like a 6-9 1/2 wingspan, so he’s definitely got an NBA body and a possibility, if he keeps developing, of an NBA game.” ZagsBlog.com

The elder English said he’s not surprised that NBA teams are looking at his son. “I think people don’t really understand how good A.J. is yet,” the father said in a phone interview. “I think he’s still scratching the surface of how good he’s going to be.” ZagsBlog.com

He has started well for Guangdong, a team in the Chinese Basketball Association with a long history of players from the United States, including Aaron Brooks, James Singleton, Fred Jones, Lester Hudson, Lamond Murray and Smush Parker. His fast start is enough to spark speculation from front offices that Mudiay will leave before the regular season ends in mid-February to keep him healthy and keep his Draft standing high -- and keep him from the prying eyes of NBA scouts. "They could," an executive said of the decision to shut down that Mudiay's inner-circle may face. "They could for sure." NBA.com

Said an NBA general manager: "I could see, if his stock is raised, him saying, 'I'm checking out.' I could see that. Does he do it? I don't know. But look what happened with [Dante] Exum last year. It didn't really hurt him, did it? There's an argument to be made that [Mudiay] doesn't have to do anything." NBA.com

November 14, 2014 Updates
November 13, 2014 Updates

Michael Carter-Williams: Here’s the thing: I can understand why the media seized onto the story. My problem is that it was missing a lot of context. We didn’t even have the worst record in the league at the time, but the average person watching on TV probably didn’t know that. The media spin was that we were tanking the season so we could get the number one draft pick. Now, let’s break that down for a minute. First of all, there’s a lottery system. As players, we all know the math. The last place team only has a 25 percent chance of winning the lottery. Grown men are going to go out and purposely mail it in for a one-in-four shot at drafting somebody who might someday take their job? Nope. The Players' Tribune

What are your thoughts on Mudiay in China and the D-League and foreign leagues as a destination for prospects? Chad Ford: He's been really good. He just finished his fifth game for Guangdong. His team is 4-1. He had 16 points and 9 assists in his last game versus Fujian. He's already had a triple-double. He's shooting the ball really well from three. He's young and he turns the ball over too much at times, but every scout I've spoken with who's seen him is impressed. He'll make a major play for the No. 1 pick -- especially if a team really in need of guard play gets the pick. ESPN.com

Latvia's Kristaps Porzingis. A number of international scouts I know swear he's the best prospect in the draft. Let's see what he does in Spain this year. He's averaging 8 ppg and 3.7 rpg in 21 mpg in ACB play this year. Those aren't huge numbers, but given the quality of the league and his age, it's not shabby either. ESPN.com

November 10, 2014 Updates

In an obvious attempt to make sure folks with the Oklahoma City Thunder have to answer questions about the subject, Cuban wondered aloud if the perennial contender would consider junking this season after injuries to Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook put them on the sidelines for another month. "The question I don't think anybody's asked is why they don't try to pull a David Robinson and try to get Tim Duncan?" Cuban said. He insisted he wasn't suggesting anything inappropriate. He was just curious why the question hasn't been asked. And no, he wouldn't say whether he would consider tanking the season if he were in the Thunder's position. Dallas Morning News

November 9, 2014 Updates

If the proposed reform had been in place last season, the Phoenix Suns (49 wins) would have had a 47 percent chance at a top three pick — almost the same odds as the Jazz actually had. "This is something that will come up again in the near future," Phoenix coach and former Jazz star Jeff Hornacek said. "There are some concerns about this, both ways. I’m not completely sure what the answer is, but I think there needs to be a common ground." Here is why the Jazz — among the smallest of small teams — voted against lottery reform: Around the league, the proposal was seen as one more way for the big market teams to gain an advantage over those in smaller markets. Salt Lake Tribune

In August, former NBA player Scott Roth agreed to take a detour from the volatile world of assistant coaching in the NBA to serve as the head coach of Baloncesto Sevilla in the Spanish ACB. It sounded like a truly special opportunity, since only a select few Yanks had previously coached in Spain's top league, most notably ESPN's own George Karl. So Roth, who had multiple playing stints in Spain in the early 1990s after his brief NBA career with Utah, San Antonio and Minnesota, decided he couldn't refuse the opportunity to take charge of his own team at such a high level. Especially because serving as Sevilla's coach would also mean overseeing the development of Latvian 7-footer Kristaps Porzingis, who is widely projected to be a lottery pick in the 2015 NBA Draft with a skill set scouts say takes the best from both Ersan Ilyasova and Andrea Bargnani. On my ESPN.com colleague Chad Ford's latest Big Board, Porzingis is the No. 4-rated prospect. ESPN.com

November 6, 2014 Updates
November 4, 2014 Updates

Last seasons runner up, Xinjiang Flying Tigers, has started off the season with a tough road victory over Sichuan Blue Whales. XJ is led by the NBA tandem of Jordan Crawford and Andray Blatche. Crawford, likely the most gifted pure scorer in the CBA this season has also learned to play the point guard role, and has become the teams main distributor. Teammates with the Washington Wizards, Crawford and Blatche hope to lead XJ to its first CBA title, after knocking on the door several times. Xinjiang Flying Tigers boasts the deepest roster of Chinese players, as they have contributors at each position along with newly signed Zhou Qi, who is thought to be the next NBA player out of China, a 7 footer who has guard like skills and can shoot with range, as well as handle the ball, should be on many NBA teams radar. This is the best chance for XJ to claim their first CBA championship, they clearly have the strongest 1-2 punch in Crawford and Blatche, and a top 3 Chinese roster as well. They open round 2 on the road against Chongqing. Asia-Basket

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