HoopsHype Summer League rumors

July 8, 2014 Updates

Not even the prospect of an injury, which could interfere with his plans and affect his contract status, is enough to keep James off the Mavs’ summer league roster. “Knock on wood, but I managed to stay healthy pretty much throughout college and these last two years in the NBA,” James said after Monday’s practice at American Airlines Center. “So I’m not really worried about it. “I know how to take care of my body.” Fort Worth Star-Telegram

James knows the summer league route is his best chance to get a leg up on the competition and prove that he’s worthy of receiving more minutes. “I feel like contractually it’s the same as the last two summers,” James said. “The first year I wasn’t guaranteed a contract, the second year it was a team option. “And this year I’m a free agent, so for me it’s the exact same situation. I’m playing for a contract, so that’s the way I’m going to go out there and play. That’s my mindset.” The 29-year-old James, who spent six years in the U.S. Air Force, knows what he must improve to earn more court time. Fort Worth Star-Telegram

After a sophomore slog in which his stats and his sentiment suffered, Timberwolves shooting guard Alexey Shved has accepted his new job duty as a point guard. "It doesn't matter -- point guard, shooting guard," said Shved after the Wolves' first minicamp practice before the Las Vegas summer league. "I just want to play." St. Paul Pioneer Press

July 7, 2014 Updates

Warriors center Festus Ezeli will not play in NBA Summer League games due to right shin inflammation, the team announced Monday on the eve of its first workout in Las Vegas. Ezeli after missing all of last season recovering from right knee surgery will have his return delayed because of precautionary reasons, according to the Warriors, who believe the latest injury is “nothing serious.” Contra Costa Times

Boston Celtics rookie James Young will not make his NBA debut this week in Orlando. Celtics’ president of basketball operations Danny Ainge told reporters Monday that the swingman will not play with Boston’s summer league team due to lingering health issues following a car accident Young was involved in last month. "He had a little whiplash,” Ainge said of Young’s health issues. “With whiplash comes concussion-like symptoms and dizziness here and there. We're just not messing with that stuff." Boston Globe

That doesn’t mean he’s not trying, though. Using his connection with Stan Van Gundy, his former head coach with the Orlando Magic and now the head coach and president of basketball operations for Detroit, he got himself an invite to Summer League for a chance to prove himself. Van Gundy guaranteed him nothing in providing the opportunity, but Cook is hoping to make the most of it, if only to show his gratitude to Van Gundy. “He was one of the first guys I called in being a free agent because I’m very comfortable with his offense,” Cook said. “I look back at my career, and he’s one of the few coaches that really cared about me and held me accountable. When you’re young, you don’t realize that. I’ve been at home with my kids and my wife, and I’ve matured during that process. (Van Gundy) gave me a shot to come down here. I’m ready.” Basketball Insiders

It seemed no matter who the opponent, regardless of the location, there was a familiar face - or rather, franchise - at just about every one of Dairis Bertans' games this past season overseas. That's why the Latvian playmaker said despite interest from a couple other NBA teams (Philadelphia and Toronto) to join their summer league teams, choosing the Boston Celtics was a no-brainer. "Probably the only team that was following me, I mean really following me, all season," Bertans told CSNNE.com. "They (Celtics) were at all my games. They knew how I was playing. And they invited me (to training camp). I didn't have to think about it." CSNNE.com

Nerlens Noel will play in Tuesday’s 7 p.m. Orlando Pro Summer League contest against the Houston Rockets. The 76ers 6-foot-11 center sat out Sunday’s 84-73 victory over the Oklahoma City Thunder for precautionary reasons. The Sixers just don’t want to overwork Noel, who on Saturday played in his first game in 17 months following a knee injury in his lone season at Kentucky. Philadelphia Inquirer

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