Slava Kravtsov Rumors
“Some NBA players will come [to Eurobasket] others will not, but we don’t have that many NBA players in Ukraine. “We used to have Slava [Viacheslav Kravtsov] in the NBA, who is now playing in China and we have a young player right now, [Phoenix Suns center] Alex Len, who has not yet played for the national team.
“Much respect for the organization of the Phx Suns#staytuned,” Butler tweeted Wednesday night. It is not clear what the Suns have planned for Smith 25, and Kravtsov, 26, a Ukranian native like Suns first-round pick Alex Len. Some roster decisions are ahead for the Suns with 17 players under guaranteed contracts once Len signs. They can carry a maximum of 15 players on the regular-season roster but the futures of Beasley (expected waiver) and Channing Frye (resolution of heart issue follow-ups) remain in the air. The Racine Journal Times first reported the trade talks Wednesday night. The deal should be finalized Thursday.
The 33-year-old has since been working out in Phoenix and was a featured player at the podium when the Suns recently unveiled a new uniform design. Sources, however, say McDonough has consented to allow Butler to realize a lifelong dream of playing for Milwaukee with the trade.
Butler, 33, will make $8 million this season on an expriring contract but the Bucks could absorb most of that with $7.5 million of cap space. Smith, who has played 121 games for six teams, will make a guaranteed $985,000 this season with a 2014-15 team option at the same salary. Kravtsov, who logged 25 games in Detroit as a rookie last season, is on an expiring deal for a guaranteed $1.5 million.
The Suns have agreed to trade Butler, a Racine, Wis., native, to the Milwaukee Bucks for point guard Ish Smith and center Slava Kravtsov about seven weeks after they acquired Butler and hailed him as a veteran influence for the youthful Suns and part of the future.
Jennings, taken 10th overall in the 2009 Draft, will get a three-year, $24 million contract from Detroit. He becomes the Pistons’ starter next season, with veteran Chauncey Billups returning to the team where he was the 2004 NBA Finals MVP to serve as a backup. Detroit selected rookie shooting guard Kentavious Caldwell-Pope in this year’s Draft, and signed forward Josh Smith from Atlanta for four years and $54 million.
The drawn-out saga of restricted free agent guard Brandon Jennings ended Tuesday, as the Milwaukee Bucks agreed to a sign-and-trade deal with the Detroit Pistons to send Jennings there in exchange for guard Brandon Knight and forwards Khris Middleton and Slava Kravtsov.
Slava Kravtsov was thrilled to make his NBA debut Friday for the Detroit Pistons even if, as he noted, “the first time I stepped on the court was not our coach’s decision.” It has been that kind of season for Kravtsov, the Ukrainian import who went 28 games without playing before getting some garbage time against the lowly Washington Wizards in a 100-68 win. He enjoyed it, even if it came in particularly strange fashion. Kravtsov’s debut came about because Rodney Stuckey took a whack to the mouth which knocked loose a tooth — he was expected to travel with the team to tonight’s rematch in Washington — leaving Wizards coach Randy Wittman to select the free-throw shooter when Stuckey had to go directly to the Pistons’ locker room with 10:03 remaining.
But what about Slava Kravtsov? The rookie center from the Ukraine is the only player on the Pistons roster who has yet to appear in a game this season. He’s dressed a handful of times but has yet to hit the court in a regular-season game. Wouldn’t a stint the D-League – even a short one – be beneficial for the 6-foot-11 Kravtsov? “We’ve talked about it,” coach Lawrence Frank said Thursday. “Joe (Dumars) and George (David, assistant general manager) kind of handle that in terms of the timing with it. But I think it would be great for Slava. He wants to play. He’s gotten a lot stronger. He’s worked on his upper body.
“One of the tendencies is this: Everything you say is (nods head affirmatively, to indicate comprehension), and really it’s (shakes head negatively),” Frank said. “They don’t (understand). So what you have to be, like with anyone, is, ‘Hey, I get it if you don’t understand.’ Just think about the cultural assimilation one has to make.”
Detroit Pistons center Slava Kravtsov has plenty to overcome. He’s an NBA rookie. The Ukrainian never lived in the U.S. before signing with the Pistons this summer. And then, there’s Kravtsov’s balky English, although that isn’t always just restricted to him, Pistons coach Lawrence Frank joked. “He’s battling a lot,” Frank said, “because not only is he battling a guy who speaks a different language, but I speak a really different language, being from New Jersey.”
The Pistons and Ukrainian big man Slava Kravtsov have reached a verbal agreement, and he will be a Piston next week, despite an overseas report this week that said his Ukrainian team was reminding folks that Kravtsov has one year remaining on his contract, leading to buyout issues.