Michael Malone: And we’ve got competitors. Like, Kenneth Faried wants to play but he’s putting the team above his own personal situation which I think is a sign of a team that has a great comradere, that has great chemistry, and you’ve got guys that are really pulling for each other. And I think that it’s sincere. It’s not just BS. It’s not just fake. I think our guys at the end of the day care for each other and the bottom line is that we all want to win and we are going to support whoever is on the floor. When you have as many injuries as we’ve had, the fact that guys are stepping up and guys are rooting for each other is a sign of good things to come.
More Rumors in this Storyline
The Suns and Denver Nuggets have discussed a trade of Eric Bledsoe for Emmanuel Mudiay and other pieces, league sources told Basketball Insiders. Nuggets forward Kenneth Faried has emerged as part of the trade package with Mudiay, league sources told Basketball Insiders.
Kenneth Faried strongly expressed his desire to be a starter at media day. How did you take those public comments? Arturas Karnisovas: We welcome that. It’s a competitive spirit, and we want our training camp to be competitive. We didn’t want to just give guys playing time. We want them to earn it. That’s a good approach. Whoever earns minutes in the preseason is going to play.
“He thinks he’s a starter,” Malone said. “He’s been a starter in the NBA. Mason Plumlee’s been a starter on a playoff team, as well … if what’s best for our team is to bring Kenneth off the bench, right now, hey, go out there and play to the best to your ability.”
As the Nuggets get to work in preparation for the NBA season, Kenneth Faried stubbornly refuses to accept a reserve role and defiantly insists if Denver can’t give him the minutes on the court he deserves, there are 29 other teams in the league where he can go play.
“I’ll just put it out there for everybody. I’m not a bench player. I’ve been saying that for the longest. I’m a starter,” Faried said Monday, when I asked him about his status with the Nuggets. “I love to hear the crowd (when introduced as), ‘Starting at power forward, No. 35, Kenneth Faried.’ Yes, that’s me. One hundred percent, that’s been my whole life. And I’m going to fight for a starting position. I’m just not going to lay down and let somebody take it. ”
“There are 29 other teams,” said Faried, whose contract with the Nuggets runs through 2019. “If this team doesn’t want, or respect me enough, to play me the minutes that I think I deserve to play, then I understand that. Hey, there’s 29 others. Maybe I’ll go somewhere else and do what I need to do there. But at the same token, I’m here in Denver, and I want to play Manimal basketball, no matter what, every time I step on that court.”
“I actually like it,” Faried said of the consistent trade rumors to Nate Kreckman and Ryan Harris on Altitude 950. “Honestly, before I used to hate it, because it’s like wow they want to trade me, but now I’m thinking, hey, I’m still being talked about, people still know my work in the NBA and that’s respectful and humbling to me. Hey, I may not have had some of the best years recently to me and to myself, and I’m like yo, I still can do this and I know I can and it took me last year I wasn’t starting then I became a starter here and then not starting and started again at the end of everything and it’s like a lot. But hey, I take it with a grain of salt and just keep grinding and just focus on the main prize and that’s our team winning and trying to make it to the playoffs and win a championship pretty much. So that’s been my main goal and whatever I need to do I’m just going to do on the court and if people talk about me in trades, (inaudible) that means I’m still worthy and people still respect my game and still want me to be on some team somewhere.”
Chris Haynes: One version of potential 3-team trade involving Cleveland, Indiana, Denver, Kenneth Faried would be Cavalier-bound, league sources tell ESPN
While Kenneth Faried, Wilson Chandler and Danilo Gallinari have consistently had their names tied to trade rumors, Malone reiterated Wednesday that the team doesn’t feel compelled to make a move with any sole focus on reaching the playoffs this season, even as the New Orleans Pelicans loaded up to make a run by acquiring star center DeMarcus Cousins from Sacramento.
“I have a clear head,” Faried said. “Everything is about money, money – how much this guy makes, how much that guy makes. For me, now, it doesn’t matter. The money is going to come, it doesn’t really matter what pretty much you do, you can’t control what the front office does. “That’s what you have your agents for, so you can control what you can control, and that’s my play on the court and how I come out and decide to play every day. I’m going to have that energy, that excitement and that love for the game. That’s what I’m going to do every single night.”
The Nuggets will also be at the epicenter of the trade market. They’ve been dangling Faried off and on for three years, and continue to now, sources say. They could deal in either team-building direction: turn young players and extra picks into a bigger name, or go full rebuild by flipping their established veterans for more picks. You can win 30-something games for only so long before ownership jolts you in one direction — even if this ownership gave its entire front office contract extensions over the summer.
The Nuggets are seemingly always mentioned in trade rumors, so their makeup could well change before training camp if Denver moves a player like Danilo Gallinari or Kenneth Faried with one of its guards or future picks. The Nuggets tried to move up in the first round without success, but were able to address a need by taking Murray and his all-around game to plug in next to second-year point guard Emmanuel Mudiay.
Among the teams the Nuggets have talked with that have warmed to a trade for Faried, a source said, is Minnesota. New coach Tom Thibodeau has long been a fan of his. Thibodeau was part of the Team USA staff when Faried competed in the World Cup in 2014, and has had an affinity toward him since, and the ex-Bulls coach would like to acquire a big man who can provide interior toughness to pair with Rookie of the Year center Karl-Anthony Towns.
Of the teams most often rumored to be involved in a draft-day trade, sources say the Nuggets have emerged as the most likely to pull off a deal, whether ahead of Thursday’s draft or soon thereafter. That’s because the Nuggets enter Thursday’s draft with three first-round picks — as do the Celtics, Sixers and Suns — but also hold the best young-veteran asset, forward Kenneth Faried. While he has not issued a trade demand from the Nuggets, it’s no secret that Faried does not feel included in Denver’s future plans and would welcome a move.
The Raptors are chasing a power forward this week. Sources say Brooklyn’s Thaddeus Young, New Orleans’ Ryan Anderson, Denver’s Kenneth Faried and the Phoenix duo of Markieff Morris and P.J. Tucker have all been pursued this month by the East’s No. 2 team.
Chris Broussard: “I’ve been told that the Clips actually called Denver and offered Blake Griffin and Lance Stephenson for Danilo Gallinari, Kenneth Faried, Will Barton and Nikola Jokic. And Denver turned it down because Blake will be a free agent after next season and they felt like he may leave, plus they like some of those young kids, they love Jokic.”
Brian Windhorst: “From what I’m hearing, they [Raptors] are pretty aggressive in the trade market. They are looking for power forwards: I’ve heard them attached to Thaddeus Young, I’ve heard them attached to Kenneth Faried, I’ve heard them attached to Markieff Morris.”
Faried, 26, quietly has had a solid season, holding down the power forward position without missing much time because of injuries. His effort in the Nuggets’ win over Chicago on Friday earned praise from Malone. With a reasonable contract and a big impact on the court, there continue to be suitors for his services as his value remains high. He isn’t officially on the trade block — never has been, really — but a “too good to be true” offer might entice the Nuggets to pull the trigger on a deal.
He isn’t officially on the trade block — never has been, really — but a “too good to be true” offer might entice the Nuggets to pull the trigger on a deal.
It seems Faried was born to be a perpetual trade rumor, and he admits the uncertainty messed with his mind, at least until friend Ty Lawson was shipped out of town, which the Manimal insists steeled his gut for the roller-coaster nature of the hoops business. “Either you learn how to deal with it … or you let it defeat you,” Faried said.
However, with Lawson now gone and new head coach Mike Malone in place, there is a growing sense that Denver wants to see if Malone can reach Faried in the same ways he reached DeMarcus Cousins in Sacramento and turn the situation around.
If Faried continues to be a malcontent, express unhappiness and not buy into the program, it’s not out of the question he gets moved. It just seems highly unlikely that a move is going to happen before games are played and the Nuggets likely give this situation a good look before entertaining situations.
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January 16, 2018 | 9:59 pm EST Update
After the Mavericks’ shootaround at Pepsi Center on Tuesday, Dennis Smith Jr. clearly laid out his thoughts on the Verizon Slam Dunk event that will be on Saturday night, Feb. 17, in Los Angeles. “That’s something I’d like to do,” the 20-year-old said. “If I’m given the opportunity, I’m definitely willing to do it. That’s the event that I watched a lot growing up, and it’s probably the most exciting event of the All-Star weekend, except the actual game.”
If the league sticks with four dunkers, that means that a lot of quality rim-benders will be left out. “I don’t know when it happens,” Smith said, adding that he has not heard anything yet about the possibility of being in the event. “But it feels like I should be given the opportunity. It’s not my decision, though.”
Allan Horton: Bjelica postgame on his altercation with Afflalo… “I was just trying to protect myself & thank god I reacted that way [moving back to avoid the punch]. He was wild, I don’t know what’s wrong with that guy but I was just trying to protect myself.”
LeBron James reclaimed his kingdom in China from Stephen Curry — arguably the most popular current NBA star in China — in terms of jersey sales, according to the latest NBA China jersey and merchandise sales for the 2017-18 season.
Kobe Bryant, who retired at the end of the 2015-16 season, finally dropped from the top ranks of jersey sales in China. Bryant and the Los Angeles Lakers were No. 1 on jersey and team merchandise lists at the beginning of 2017 and fell only to No. 2 by the end of last season.
January 16, 2018 | 9:14 pm EST Update
The reigning slam dunk champion won’t be back in time to defend his crown but would like to see Jazz rookie Donovan Mitchell participate in Los Angeles just like the rest of the world. “Definitely. Just based off the highlights that I’ve seen and just watching his game. I like his game,” Glenn Robinson III said. “I know a lot of people do and a lot of fans is excited and that’s the most important part. So I think that he definitely is going to be on that list to be in it.”