As for Favors and Exum, Lindsey wouldn’t say he expected to sign both players, although he did say he “hoped” to have both players back for next season. “He’s a good player on a good team and Derrick is very consistent in his want to be back here,” Lindsey said. “I think he understands what he has here and we certainly understand what he produces. His agent is a terrific person and that’s been able to carve out good deals for both sides, so I don’t see any initial obstacles. Derrick’s got to go through this process, but that’s my hope (he’ll be back).”
Eric Woodyard: Dante Exum on free agency: "For me as a player, I just need to control what I can control."
Heading into his restricted free-agency year, Exum has two weeks and the playoffs to establish some sort of market for himself. At worst, he figures to accept the one-year qualifying offer from the Jazz, who will presumably tender that to him rather than allowing him to head into unrestricted free agency. At best? He’s got to hope for a strong finish and count on the memories those NBA officials have of his July splash five years ago.
“He has not had an easy time with injuries,” one general manager told Sporting News. “I don’t think you hold that against him. I think you have to look at him as a physically gifted guy who is only 22 (he turns 23 in July) and has already gone through the huge NBA learning curve. There are guys in this year’s draft who will be 22 but aren’t going to have the kind of knowledge of the league he has, and don’t have the physical gifts.”
It’s speculation, but it only takes one team willing to make an offer. Of course, that offer would have to be at least two years under NBA restricted free agency rules, unless the Jazz decided to let him go (which is unlikely). One front-office executive estimated that Exum could warrant a two-year deal in the range of $18-20 million (with an option for a third likely) to get him away from the Jazz, who would have two days to decide whether to match. “He’s a gamble,” the front-office executive said. “But $10 million a year is not as big a gamble as it once was. He could show something here.”
Tony Jones: I've been saying this for months but I'd be shocked if exum isn't back. The Jazz value him a ton
Hood is one of two Jazz players eligible for an extension. Former lottery pick Dante Exum is the other. If Hood or Exum can’t reach a deal, their subsequent step would be restricted free agency next summer, where they can receive an offer sheet from another team, but the Jazz have the ability to match the offer. The Jazz are expected to allow Exum to reach restricted free agency unless he accepts a team-friendly deal similar to Alec Burks, who extended for $10 million annually three years ago. There is hope internally that Exum is on the verge of a breakout, and he is expected to play a key role off the bench this season.
May 26, 2022 | 9:03 pm EDT Update
Adrian Wojnarowski: ESPN’s NBA Draft Analyst Mike Schmitz is finalizing a deal to become an assistant GM with the Portland Trail Blazers, sources tell ESPN. Schmitz will play a significant role with new GM Joe Cronin in leading the Blazers’ domestic and international scouting departments.
Schmitz is expected to remain with ESPN through the June 23 NBA Draft, and formally begin his duties with Portland in July. The Blazers have the seventh overall pick in 2022 Draft. Schmitz, 32, has been a draft analyst for ESPN since 2017, and worked previously for DraftExpress and as a video coordinator with the Bakersfield Jam of the NBA’s G League in 2012-2013.
In the aftermath of the elementary school massacre in Uvalde, Texas, the Miami Heat used a pre-game moment to urge fans to contact U.S. Sens. Marco Rubio and Rick Scott, both Florida Republicans, “demanding their support for common sense gun laws” — and telling them they can “make change at the ballot box.” Rubio, who is up for re-election this fall, didn’t like it. He took to Twitter on Thursday, lambasting the NBA for “politicizing a horrific tragedy in America.”
“The Heat urges you to contact your state senators by calling 202-224-3121 to leave a message demanding their support for common sense gun laws. You can also make change at the ballot box. Visit heat.com/vote to register and let your voice be heard this fall,” the statement said. Many fans could be heard cheering as the announcement was made.
May 26, 2022 | 8:27 pm EDT Update
Melissa Rohlin: Steve Kerr on the reaction he’s received to his comments on the mass shootings. “I’ve had a lot of people reach out to me, most asking what they can do… What I’m asking people to do is get involved in their local communities…call your senators.”
Callie Caplan: Steve Kerr has encouraged others to call their reps since his viral comment on Uvalde: “I have lots of friends who are Democrats and lots of friends who are Republicans. All I know is they all want gun violence to go away, so we just need to get our public servants to respond.”
Melissa Rohlin: Kidd was asked about his comment that the Warriors play zone because they can’t guard them one-on-one. He said it’s a compliment to his guys, not a shot at the Warriors. But he added that as a player, he knows if a coach makes adjustments, it’s because his team can’t do something