Clippers leadership — Ballmer, Frank and general manager Michael Winger — harbored fears that Presti was close to striking a deal with Toronto that would have delivered George to Leonard and the NBA champions, sources said. Had Presti been able to strike a deal for George with Toronto — and Leonard was willing to stay — George was believed to be willing to join the Raptors, sources said. Presti pursued a package of Russell Westbrook and George to the Raptors — with the NBA’s Most Improved Player, forward Pascal Siakam, as the centerpiece of a broader, asset-crippling deal — but Ujiri couldn’t keep up with the Clippers’ willingness to unload unprotected first-round picks into the middle of the next decade, league sources said. Simply, Toronto didn’t have the depth of picks it needed to get a deal done — nor the certainty that getting George would make Leonard stay with the Raptors, sources said.
January 19, 2021 | 3:28 am EST Update
Shams Charania: Trail Blazers star CJ McCollum has a fractured left foot and will miss an extended period of time, sources tell @TheAthletic @Stadium .
Guard Victor Oladipo exuded optimism about the Houston Rockets after his franchise debut, presenting quite a contrast to James Harden’s final comments as a member of the franchise. “I know that better days are ahead for the Houston Rockets, and I’m looking forward to being a part of those special days,” Oladipo said after his 32-point, nine-assist performance in a 125-120 road loss to the Chicago Bulls on Monday night.
Alykhan Bijani: Victor Oladipo on Stephen Silas: “He just has a great personality and spirit to him. I’m looking forward to playing for him. We can do something very special here, we just gotta continue to buy into it. The sky is the limit if we continue to do that.” #Rockets
JB Bickerstaff: Cavaliers coach J.B. Bickerstaff said Kevin Porter Jr. wasn’t at practice today and added, “We all want to see Kevin be successful, and I still feel that way. Whatever it is that happens in the future for him, I hope nothing but the best for him.”
“In all honesty, I would say I would do it, I’m not going to lie,” Allen said. “If you look at what happened with the Lakers, they did the same thing. They went and got their ring. If I take myself out of it, I would’ve loved to stay in Brooklyn, but I understand that in an opportunity like that, you have to go do it.”
Michael Scotto: James Harden on KD: “I know what type of player Kevin Durant is. He’s one of the best players to ever touch a basketball. It’s God-given, 7-foot, and can basically do everything. For me, it’s not trying to compete with that. It’s allowing Kevin to be the best Kevin he can be.”