Thomas is in a contract year and he wants to be paid. League executives and agents judging the market believe Thomas' best chance at a significant contract this summer is with the Cavs and they believe he will proceed accordingly.
That could be the case regardless of what happens with LeBron James' free agency. In the event James decides to move on from Cleveland again, some believe the Cavs may still be interested in retaining Thomas as long as he proves he can return to his All-Star form.
Second, Gilbert loves underdogs like Thomas. He sees himself as an underdog, a self-made billionaire who went to Michigan State, not the Ivy League. In 2016, Gilbert was the driving force behind paying $2.4 million to buy a draft pick to take Kay Felder, an undersized point guard from Oakland University who attracted Gilbert because of his ability to overcome challenges. Felder didn't make it with the Cavs, but Thomas is the embodiment of what the Cavs were dreaming of with Felder.
Shams Charania: Sources: Suns are signing guard Isaiah Canaan to a minimum deal for the remainder of the season. Canaan has averaged 13 points, 5 assists since joining team on hardship exception.
“Mike established himself as an NBA player here and our partnership proved to be beneficial,” Suns general manager Ryan McDonough told Yahoo Sports. “Mike had a handful of 20-point games and helped us win a few games. We wish Mike the best as he works to find another home.” James’ release comes as young star Devin Booker and rookie Davon Reed are working to return to the court for the Suns, while Isaiah Canaan also has had strong performances since joining the team on an injury-hardship exemption. Canaan, who’s averaged 13 points and five assists in four games backing up Tyler Ulis, agreed to a minimum deal for the remainder of the season on Friday, league sources told Yahoo Sports.
Sources: The Suns plan to sign guard Isaiah Canaan of G League's Northern Arizona under injury hardship exception, with Devin Booker among four players sidelined two weeks or more.
"We're disappointed because I know Isaiah was really excited about getting back with the Rockets," Canaan's agent Mark Bartelstein said. "When they got the perimeter play of Trevor back, Daryl (Morey) the Rockets general manager called and said 'I don't think there's enough minutes for us to just justify using up our cap flexibility.'
Mark Bartelstein: "While we're disappointed, we understand it. If there's not an opportunity for Isaiah to play, they're so tight up against it, it, put them in a tough situation. They want to stay in close contact where if something were to happen with the roster and they have a need, I know he's the first guy they'll look at."
"It's pretty simple," Morey said. "Isaiah did nothing wrong, but we're obviously focused on the big picture. We're having to think down the road. We need to preserve all our flexibility. Unless someone is currently, actively on the floor or in the plan for it, hard to keep him on the roster."
Houston Rockets General Manager Daryl Morey announced today that the team has signed free agent guard Isaiah Canaan.
The prorated minimum on the Isaiah Canaan non-guaranteed contract with Houston is $1.5M with a $1.4M cap hit. The former second round pick of the Rockets will earn $8911 per day while on the roster. Houston now has 15 players on the roster, 13 that are guaranteed.
Chris Haynes: Free agent point guard Isaiah Canaan intends to sign with the Houston Rockets, league sources tell ESPN.
Michael Scotto: Oklahoma City Thunder will waive guard Isaiah Canaan, a league source told @BBallInsiders.
Royce Young: With tomorrow the non-guaranteed cut deadline, likely outcome is both Christon and Canaan are waived and OKC keeps the 15th spot open.
Fred Katz: Thunder announce the training camp signings of Bryce Alford, Markel Brown, Isaiah Canaan and forward Rashawn Thomas.
Shams Charania: Sources: Free agent guard Isaiah Canaan has agreed to a non-guaranteed deal with Oklahoma City.
Chis Haynes: Free agent guard Isaiah Canaan will participate in a group workout for the Charlotte Hornets on Tuesday, league sources tell ESPN.
Michael Scotto: Source: Chicago Bulls and Isaiah Canaan agree to a 2-year, $2.2 million deal.
Chris Haynes: Free agent guard Isaiah Canaan has agreed to two-year, $2.2 million pact with Chciago Bulls, league source told @clevelanddotcom.
Vincent Goodwill: Bulls sign G Isaiah Canaan to two-year deal worth $2.2 million, second year team option, per a source. @Chris Haynes had it first
Tom Moore: #NBA source: #Sixers don't extend qualifying offers to Isaiah Canaan or Christian Wood, making both unrestricted.
August 12, 2022 | 4:09 pm EDT Update
Shams Charania: Free agent center Willie Cauley-Stein has agreed to a one-year deal with the Houston Rockets, sources tell @TheAthletic @Stadium. Cauley-Stein will compete for a roster spot in training camp.
Luka Doncic was ready to go but with him resting in the closing minutes, Goran Dragic had to be Batman again. The captain of the Slovenian national team made a big three that decided the 104-103 overtime win over Turkey in Istanbul.
It was only a prep game as the two teams are preparing for the upcoming Eurobasket and the FIBA World Cup, but it will be remembered. Dragic finished the night with 28 points and the winning three, while Doncic had 23 points, 10 rebounds, and five assists in 27 minutes of action. He didn’t play in the overtime.
NBA star guard and Raleigh native John Wall is hosting a series of events this week to honor his late mother. With the Los Angeles Clippers guard in attendance, the John Wall Family Foundation hosted a back-to-school event Thursday morning at Durant Road Elementary School. The foundation will help the Durant Road Elementary students throughout the school year. On Thursday, Wall’s foundation presented a check for $11,200 to the the Salvation Army of Wake County Red Shield Club of Raleigh for summer day camp scholarships.
Kids ages 8-18 will get a chance next week to receive face-to-face pointers from an NBA player who grew up in Lowell. The Terance Mann Complete Player Basketball Camp will be held Aug. 15-18 at The Mill Works, 22 Town Farm Road, Westford. The hours of the camp are 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. each day, Monday to Thursday.
August 12, 2022 | 2:38 pm EDT Update
The Russell Westbrook situation does seem a little more interesting, at least in the sense that the Lakers might have more control than they do in talks with James. The team, after all, could always add more stuff to any trade offers in an effort to unload Westbrook. And depending on what the expectations are in return, they could simply just keep piling on the limited trade assets that they have (pick swaps, second-round picks, etc.). So far, that’s a road the Lakers haven’t seriously taken, Rob Pelinka surprising plenty of folks around the NBA with his hesitancy to attach multiple draft picks with Westbrook in trade talks.