July 28, 2021 | 2:24 pm EDT Update
Brandon Rahbar: Hearing from sources that the Lakers turned down an offer of SGA + the #6 pick in the draft for Kyle Kuzma.
This is a top-heavy class which means Barnes or Jalen Suggs could still be available with the fifth pick. Don’t be surprised if the Golden State Warriors make a move to trade up and snag either prospect remaining on the board. The cost be could a bit higher than they’re willing to pay but they’re undoubtedly going to explore a route to either prospect as both would fit well in their winning culture. If the Warriors are not able to trade No. 7 to move up, I wouldn’t be surprised if they trade down. I’d imagine the Memphis Grizzlies are a potential suitor. Golden State could then use No. 10 and No. 14 to select win-now prospects like Davion Mitchell and Chris Duarte.
I had a conversation with one scout yesterday who spoke to USA TODAY Sports Media Group on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak publicly on behalf of their team. They said Virginia’s Trey Murphy was the player who had helped himself the most during the pre-draft process. You can see why when you read my interview with Murphy — he has an excellent understanding of the game.
According to one prospect who recently spoke to For The Win, due to COVID-19 restrictions, those not invited to the green room are not allowed to come to the stage and shake the hand of the commissioner as they have been in years past. Regardless of who is actually in the building, however, it is certain to be an exciting and life-changing night for the next generation of NBA talent. Based on conversations I’ve had with scouts around the league, and from reports and tea leaves left in other mock drafts from trusted draftniks, below is how I project the events will unfold at Barclays Center and on ESPN and ABC at 8:00 p.m. ET on July 29.
Marc Berman: Mike D’Antoni enjoyed living in Brooklyn well enough. His decision to leave as Nets assistant to sit out a season speaks to challenges of managing a Kyrie Irving-Kevin Durant-James Harden triumverate
Christian Clark: Pelicans statement on Jaxson Hayes’ arrest: “We have been made aware of the incident involving Jaxson Hayes. We are working in conjunction with the NBA and Jaxson’s representatives to gather more information and will have no further comment at this time.”
July 28, 2021 | 1:38 pm EDT Update
New Orleans Pelicans center Jaxson Hayes — the #8 overall pick in the 2019 NBA Draft — was arrested after an alleged violent altercation with police, TMZ Sports has learned … and it apparently got so extreme, the hooper and a cop were taken to a hospital. We’re told law enforcement were called to an LA area home for a domestic disturbance early Wednesday morning … and when cops attempted to check on the parties involved, 21-year-old Hayes tried like hell to keep them from entering the premises.