Storyline: Rajon Rondo Free Agency

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8 months ago via ESPN

On the point guard front, the Knicks are looking at several different veterans and hope to bring one in on a short-term deal. One free agent they’ve remained in touch with is Rajon Rondo, per sources. There is interest from both sides, sources say. Rondo has clashed with members of his previous organizations, but young players in Chicago and Sacramento rave about his ability to mentor and develop them. That’s what the Knicks are looking for — someone to help guide rookie Frank Ntilikina.
8 months ago via ESPN

Ian Begley: There remains mutual interest between the Knicks and free agent point guard Rajon Rondo, per league sources. Both sides are in touch as the Knicks continue to search for a veteran point guard. Rondo is likely one of several guards they are considering. New York has less than $2 million in cap space and a $4.3 million exception to offer free agents at the moment. But the club may create cap space via trade; the Knicks remain interested in trading Carmelo Anthony. There isn’t unanimous support in the organization for signing Rondo. But it’s worth noting that young players in Sacramento and Chicago have raved about Rondo’s mentorship and his ability to assist with player development. The Knicks are looking for a mentor to rookie Frank Ntilikina.
8 months ago via ESPN

Ian Begley: The Knicks continue to be in touch with Rajon Rondo. ESPN reported on the first day of free agency that the Knicks touched base with both Rondo and Darren Collison, though there was no substantive conversation regarding either player. The Knicks have continued to be in touch with Rondo, sources confirm. But there is no scheduled meeting yet. Some people in touch with the Knicks recently came away with the impression that NYK didn’t have strong interest in Rondo. The Knicks are looking for a point guard to mentor Frank Ntilikina, according to sources. Derrick Rose and Shelvin Mack are other point guards on their radar. The Knicks heard from the Celtics, who are open to trading Marcus Smart. The club’s interest in Smart is not know. The Knicks’ most-recent contact with Rondo was first reported by Basketball Insiders.

The Bulls insist they have made no formal decision on whether to pick up Rondo’s $13.4 million option or waive him for the $3 million guarantee by that deadline. But while the Bulls greatly value Rondo’s talent and teaching and mentoring ability, they also know their young point guards Kris Dunn and Cameron Payne need to play. And they also still have Jerian Grant. According to sources, one option being considered is waiving Rondo and trying to re-sign him at a lower salary.

For the first time, Rajon Rondo answered affirmatively — and without hesitation — when asked Tuesday if he hopes the Bulls pick up a team option for him to return next season. “Yeah, I like where I’m at. I think we have a really good team,” Rondo said. “We made a big trade halfway through the season. All the things this year with 45 different lineups, we still made it to the playoffs. Right now, just try to stay consistent as possible and develop some chemistry.”

Rondo said he became more of a locker room presence and mentor in Sacramento, having to tutor Cousins following his clashes with Karl. And he said his past brushes with coaches and teammates helped him mature and prepare him for that situation. “For me to be in that situation in my 10th year, what I’ve learned and grown from in the past, I was able to handle [the chaos],” Rondo said. “I was able to handle it a lot better than maybe Year 4 or 5. A lot of people criticize and get on DeMarcus a lot, but the man is a very young man and he hasn’t had too many great vets around him to teach him how to become a better professional.

Rondo said he would “love to continue to play with” Cousins, but for that to happen, he and the Kings need to “come together and figure out if we can work, but if not, I’m always in, I’m open. I’m open this summer and I look forward to having a great career.” As for his free-agent options this summer, Rondo said, “I want to see myself in a situation where guys want to grow, guys want to get better. I don’t want to be the hardest-working guy in the gym.”
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February 24, 2018 | 12:47 pm EST Update
LA Clippers owner Steve Ballmer on Saturday said that trading Blake Griffin was “a very difficult decision,” but that considerations about the future, as well as injury and chemistry concerns, necessitated the blockbuster deal with the Detroit Pistons. “[Griffin] is obviously a superstar player,” said Ballmer. “But if you look at what happened injury-wise, if you look at the kind of chemistry we were getting on our team, the thing you can see at the high level with the numbers when I started — one guy got all the assists, one guy got all the points and one guy got all the rebounds. It’s not all quite that way, but I think in the modern NBA, we were seeing it more and more — there’s a greater distribution of responsibility.”
4 hours ago via ESPN
“We have to add some pieces obviously, but I think we’re building for what I think is the modern NBA, and that trend has only accelerated since we signed Blake last summer.” Ballmer said that as the Clippers owner, he doesn’t believe in the practice commonly regarded as “tanking,” whereby teams strip their rosters of high-level talent and endure losing seasons with a focus on accumulating high draft picks.
4 hours ago via ESPN
Ballmer said that the Clippers organization deploys analytics in a number of areas, including health and coaching, but that he was most fascinated by the use of data with regard to the management of the NBA’s complex collective bargaining agreement, which governs the salary cap. Ballmer alluded to a trade the Clippers made this past offseason which sent former Clippers point guard Chris Paul to the Rockets for a collection of players. “I find it a very interesting numeric chess game, if you will,” Ballmer said. “There are teams that absolutely do it better, and do it worse. I see [Morey] sitting in the front row. We made a trade: Chris Paul for a number of guys back from Houston. I thought they did something very clever having a whole set of non-guaranteed contracts that really gave them more flexibility in putting the deal together with us than they would’ve had otherwise.”
4 hours ago via ESPN
The Atlanta Hawks Basketball Club has transferred guard Josh Magette and forward Andrew White III from Atlanta to the Erie BayHawks, the team’s NBA G League affiliate, it was announced today. Both players are on two-way contracts. In 31 games with Erie (29 starts), Magette has compiled 15.2 points, 9.9 assists, 3.5 rebounds and 1.8 steals in 34.8 minutes, leading the G League in assists while ranking 15th in steals.
Asked how he appraised his $2 billion bid for the Clippers in 2014 — then a record for an NBA team — Ballmer said he relied on both quantitative analysis and intelligence of the marketplace and the pool of potential buyers. “I looked at what the cash flows would be, and what kind of multiple you’d put on,” Ballmer said. “A team in L.A. is literally beachfront real estate. It’s worth a lot more than teams everywhere else. Because if you ever get a foreign buyer later on — foreign buyers only want to buy in a few cities, which I knew because it was part of the pressure on the price. There was a lurking foreign buyer, if you will, for the team. But ultimately, I knew what the price was in the good old-fashioned way: I knew what the next bidder wanted to pay.”
4 hours ago via ESPN
February 24, 2018 | 11:03 am EST Update
The All-Star forward became the first player to ever post 45 points, 15 rebounds, five steals and five blocks in a game since the NBA started recording steals and blocks in 1973-74. Davis has been playing at an MVP level since the team lost star center DeMarcus Cousins to a season-ending Achilles injury, and it’s given New Orleans the belief that it can remain a contender in the ultra-competitive Western Conference playoff race. “I looked at the stat sheet when we were walking in and I couldn’t believe he had 45 points,” Gentry said. “That’s not a good thing because, now, I almost feel like I’m taking him for granted.”