One free agent who may have to head overseas is Lance Stephenson, whose option was not picked up by Memphis. It’s uncertain why the Grizzlies passed on Stephenson, who averaged 14.2 points and shot 47.4 percent from the field in 26 games after he was acquired from the Clippers. Stephenson has enough talent to help a contender, but the question is whether his quirky personality has scared off teams. Also still remaining on the free agent market: Josh Smith, Chase Budinger, Kevin Martin, Ty Lawson, Shane Larkin, J.J. Hickson, Cleanthony Early, and Jason Thompson.
Brandon Rogers: Chances of us signing Lance Stephenson? A potential headache but probably would be much cheaper and is clearly better than Dion Waiters. - Nets Daily: I've heard of no interest by Nets ... or any other team.
Austin: Have you heard any rumors lately involving Lance Stephenson and the Pacers? - Steve Kyler: I know Lance had interest in going back... not sure where the Pacers are on it.
Lance Stephenson is open to returning to the Indiana Pacers, to the team that took a chance on him in 2010 and where he spent his first four seasons as a pro. “If (given) a chance I would love to come back home,” Stephenson told VigilantSports.com Monday. “We will see what happens. I’m just waiting for the call,”
There are currently “a solid group of teams” that have shown interest in him four days into NBA free agency. The biggest thing Lance needs — and he knows this — is stability. After four seasons in Indy, in an environment that fit him well, Stephenson has suited up for three teams over the last two seasons. “Our number one priority is finding the right fit for him. Lance still has close friends there and would absolutely be open to that. He loved his time there and has always been grateful for all the support he has gotten from Pacers fans over the years,” his agent, Al Ebanks, wrote to VigilantSports.com in a text message.
As Larry Bird continues to revamp the Indiana Pacers’ roster this offseason, his next move could be the return of a player who previously flourished under his watch: Lance Stephenson. Stephenson has discussed the possibility of agreeing to a multiyear deal with the Pacers, a league source confirmed to IndyStar. Stephenson, a combo guard who became an unrestricted free agent last week after Memphis declined his team option, is open to returning to the Pacers next season.
Pacers fans, in particular on Twitter, have let Stephenson know they want him to return. Stephenson has noticed some of the fans’ requests. On his Twitter account as of Monday afternoon, the last four tweets Stephenson liked, which can be viewed by any user, were of Pacers fans asking him to come back to the team. “He would definitely love to be there,” the source said of Stephenson. “I know Indy’s got a special place in his heart.”
Indiana is one of the few teams that Stephenson is considering after the first three days of the NBA’s free agency period. He also has interest in possibly re-signing with the Grizzlies, who acquired him in February before the trade deadline.
Nate Taylor: I’ll have a story up shortly @indystar, but yes, Lance Stephenson is open to returning to the #Pacers, per league source.
The Memphis Grizzlies are declining guard Lance Stephenson's $9.4 million team option for next season, league sources told The Vertical. The Grizzlies declined the option in order to keep as much cap space as possible, sources said, as they hope to retain point guard Mike Conley, who is an unrestricted free agent after nine seasons with the Grizzlies.
Stephenson, 25, will aso become an unrestricted free agent. There remains interest in a possible return to the Grizzlies as well as interest from other organizations, sources said. Stephenson showed with Memphis that he can have an impact as a playmaker and source of energy.
Shams Charania: Vertical Sources: Memphis has declined Lance Stephenson's $9.4M team option. He'll be free agent. Interest for return, interest elsewhere.
Ronald Tillery: Griz coach Dave Joerger says he absolutely wants to coach Lance Stephenson again "He's had a lot of success here and the guys accepted him."
July 27, 2021 | 9:31 pm EDT Update
Joseph Hoyt: Mavericks head coach Jason Kidd confirms that Igor Kokoskov is on his way to join the Dallas coaching staff. Kidd said Kokoskov, a former coach of Mavs star Luka Doncic, will be a great coaching teammate. Said he’s in that offensive genius category of coaching.
Scott Agness: Steve Gansey — the former Mad Ants (and summer Pacers) head coach — is in Atlanta to finalize a deal to become the head coach of the Hawks’ G League team (College Park Skyhawks), league sources said. The job would reunite him with Nate McMillan.
More Than a Vote, the organization launched a year ago by prominent Black athletes and entertainers to protect African Americans’ voting rights, is launching a campaign focused on the nation’s criminal justice system. The campaign, called Protect Our People, kicked off Monday with an episode of the HBO series “The Shop,” which is produced by the basketball star LeBron James and Maverick Carter, Mr. James’s close friend and business partner. Mr. James was among the charter members of More Than a Vote.
U.S. Rep. Michelle Steel of Orange County is asking Congress to designate Aug. 24 as “Kobe Bryant Day.” The Republican congresswoman introduced legislation to honor the late basketball legend, who died in a helicopter crash in January last year, along with his daughter and seven others. Aug. 24 was chosen to pay tribute to the two jersey numbers — 8 and 24 — that Bryant wore during his 20-season career.
“Kobe Bryant used his platform to inspire millions and help kids around the world achieve success and strive for greatness. On August 24th we should remember Kobe, celebrate his life, and encourage the next generation to dream big just like Kobe did,” Steel said in a statement.
July 27, 2021 | 7:57 pm EDT Update
Tony Jones: The Oklahoma City Thunder are not expected to extend a qualifying offer to center Tony Bradley, League Sources tell The Athletic, making him an unrestricted free agent. Bradley, a former Jazz, is expected to have multiple teams interested in him on the open market