Italy last played at the flagship event back in 2006, during the last World Cup held in Asia. One of the players who saw action for the Azzurri back then is San Antonio Spurs three-point specialist Marco Belinelli, who remembers his previous World Cup experience well. “Being back in the World Cup is a very big achievement,” he said. “It’s a great competition, and I was on that 2006 team. We had a young team then, but we’ve always seen this as a great and important competition.”
July 31, 2021 | 5:23 pm EDT Update
As it turns out, the Celtics’ trade for Josh Richardson may have been insurance for a free-agent priority that is not working out so well. According to a league source, negotiations between the Celtics and Evan Fournier are close to stalling, with the team unwilling to meet the valuable wing player’s asking price of $80 million over four years.
Though it’s unclear what the Celtics are offering, “it’s not looking good,” said the source. As evidenced by reports that the Knicks and Fournier have developed a mutual interest, the Celtics now face stiff competition.
Bobby Marks: The $19.8M salary of Julius Randle is now officially guaranteed. The contract had $4M in guaranteed money for 2021/22 with a July 31 trigger date for the balance. Randle is eligible to sign a four-year $106M extension this offseason.
July 31, 2021 | 4:36 pm EDT Update
Shams Charania: The Detroit Pistons are waiving guard Cory Joseph and F/G Deividas Sirvydis, sources tell me and @James Edwards III.