Before Phil Jackson passed on perhaps the most exciting prospect of the 2017 rookie class, the Knicks president encouraged Dennis Smith Jr. to eat an exotic delicacy. “We went out to some restaurant and they had me eat some octopus, like an actual octopus tentacle,” Smith Jr. told the Daily News. “First time ever. I wasn’t going to try it, honestly. They kind of put the pressure on me to do it.”
July 16, 2018 | 8:37 am EDT Update
Kawhi Leonard is now super max eligible (third year anniversary of the contract signed on July 16, 2015) to receive a five-year $221 million extension from the Spurs. If Leonard is traded, the most he could receive in an extension (six months after the trade) would be $108 million over four-years (starting in 2019-20). Leonard would be eligible to sign a five-year $190 million contract as a free agent with the team acquiring him or four-years $141 million with a team that has cap space.
MURPHY: I first want to address the DeRozan Instagram thing. He does this regularly. Like, once or twice a season. And every single time, people react the same way. He was just around the Raptors for almost the entirety of Las Vegas Summer League, and I can’t imagine that if something were as imminent as the odds suggest, he would have been caught off-guard to the extent of a pouty social media cleanse. It’s not super rare for him to do this. Nor are his MSN Status-like IG Story posts, which I relate to quite viscerally.
Anthony Tolliver: Someone needs to sign @John Jenkins ASAP! He killed it tonight in the @NBA summer league… #shootersUNITE 💪🏾💪🏾
Spurs guard Darrun Hilliard remains a restricted free agent after the Spurs opted not to rescind his one-year qualifying offer, a league source said Saturday. Friday was the deadline for NBA teams to unilaterally withdraw a qualifying offer from a restricted free agent, making him an unrestricted free agent.
Jackson appears to be the block they’ll be building around for the future to resurrect it, but he’ll bring an ability to shoot from distance that has held back Memphis even during its seven consecutive playoff runs that included an appearance in the conference finals. “What I see is he’s a natural talker and in order to be a great defender you got to be a natural talker. That’s what he is,” Buckner said. “He has that chance to be a Defensive Player of the Year-type guy in this league for sure, but he’s a rook. He’s going to make mistakes.