NBA Rumor: Emmanuel Mudiay Free Agency

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What is Utah’s view of Mudiay? Did they view him as a possible point guard to re-sign? It seems like he progressed a lot during the season, making the correct reads, but is it enough progress that the Jazz want to hold on to him? – Jarrett T. Mudiay probably resurrected his career this season. He was terrific off the bench. He defended. He made plays off the dribble. He made good reads. Simply put, he has met and exceeded almost all expectations of him. And that’s why there is a good chance he won’t be on the roster next season.

When David Fizdale rested sore-shouldered Emmanuel Mudiay for Friday’s 120-96 blowout loss to the Rockets, the Knicks coach made a comment that he didn’t want to do anything that might affect Mudiay’s career with his first free agency upcoming. “I think about these guys’ careers from the standpoint of, we’re not going to the playoffs, this kid has now established himself and put himself in position to have an offseason where multiple teams are going to want to talk to him,’’ Fizdale said of Mudiay, who will be coming off his rookie-scale contract. “I don’t want to risk that after that he’s done so much to get to where he is.”

It seemed a concession that Mudiay, 23, may have played his way out of New York showing he can be a rotational point guard. The Knicks may have $70-plus million in cap space, but they also have a young PG in Dennis Smith Jr. and the possibility of adding West Orange, N.J. product Kyrie Irving. While Fizdale fell in love with Mudiay, there may not be a perfect pathway to his return. And Mudiay acknowledged the uncertainty before the Rockets game for the first time. “I feel like I owed [Fizdale] a lot, especially the organization because they gave me a chance. He let me go out there and be myself, so any time I was going through something, I always thought about something that he would have done for me,” Mudiay said. “That’s a conversation that we all are going to have I guess at the end of the season, so if [a return] happens, it’s great. That’s a good thing. I love everybody in this organization. At the same time, I know you’ve got to wait for those guys [other free agents] to make their decisions as well.”

Mudiay isn’t ruling out a return to New York, but he understands that with Dennis Smith Jr. and Ntilikina under contract and the possibility of a player like Kyrie Irving coming to New York, the choice may not be his. “That’s a conversation that we all are going to have, I guess, at the end of the season,” he said. “So if it happens, it’s great. That’s a good thing. I love everybody in this organization. At the same time, I know you’ve got to wait for those [stars] to make their decisions as well. “I think it’s going to be a pretty interesting [free agency] just because there are great players in it as well. You want to see where people are going to land, see where it goes from there, really.”
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January 18, 2021 | 8:46 am EST Update

Veteran Jodie Meeks seeks NBA return

With several games postponed and fewer players available due to the league’s health and safety protocols, 10-year NBA veteran Jodie Meeks hopes to earn a roster spot this season. “I haven’t retired, and I’m not looking to retire,” Meeks told HoopsHype. “I’m still healthy, and I’m only 33. The way my game is, it’s not like I’m super athletic running and jumping like Russell Westbrook. I’m strictly shooting and playing defense. I could still move. I could still play for a while. I just need an opportunity.”
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Meeks worked out in Los Angeles at the Mamba Academy with several Brooklyn Nets players in November, including Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving, James Harden, and DeAndre Jordan. The former Kentucky Wildcat also trained with Chris Brickley in New York during the fall. “They need to get me in Brooklyn,” Meeks told HoopsHype. “They need some shooting.”
Consistency is key, and the Clippers did what they had to do this week. They hadn’t put together an undefeated week this season, and now they have. It will mean more when they can continue to meet challenges and handle them accordingly going forward. “It helps when guys feel comfortable when they’re playing and not just thinking the game the whole time,” Leonard said. “It’s early still. We still want to get better. We’re not where we want to be. And that’s all I really got to say about it.”
The Suns (7-4) are set to resume action Monday on the national holiday that celebrates the man who led the Civil Rights Movement that brought great change to America. The game takes on greater meaning for the Suns because they’re playing in Memphis (6-6), where King was assassinated April 4, 1968. “I just hope that it doesn’t just become something we do,” Suns coach Monty Williams said as the NBA has made a game on MLK Day in Memphis an annual occurrence. “I hope it continues to become a moment in time, a moment in the year where we really think about what Dr. King sacrificed so that a guy like me can be in this position, because that’s what I think about.”
“Growing up in colonial Virginia, if you know anything about that part of the country, there was a number of tensions there,” Williams said. “Because of that, you heard the family members talk about Dr. King and many others who were not just speaking out, but sacrificing a ton so that our world, our country could be a better place.” Williams said his grandfather, who raised him, looked up to King. So while he heard stories from his family about the struggles of living in Virginia, Williams recognized how much King meant to his grandfather when hearing him talk about the famed minister.
In what they all consider their most important project, Anthony, Paul and Wade launched the “Social Change Fund” to address racial inequality issues. They involve ending police brutality, establishing criminal justice reform, expanding voting access, improving education, health equity and economic investment as well as promoting change through education and the arts. The three have donated an unspecified amount. “The Social Change Fund is timely,” Anthony told USA TODAY Sports. “It was our time to step up to the plate, put our money where our mouth is and really go out there and make change.”