NBA Rumor: Jae Crowder Free Agency

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Miami has interest in re-signing Goran Dragic and Jae Crowder, but the Heat won’t do anything that jeopardizes their chances with Antetokounmpo. (The list of such things might include asking Bam Adebayo to wait until next offseason to sign his new contract — a way of maximizing cap space for Antetokounmpo. Adebayo and Antetokounmpo share an agent — Alex Saratsis of Octagon. This is tricky stuff, but I assume everyone will communicate what they need to communicate.)

“My pre-draft workouts, and everything, my agent, he lives in Boca,” the 30-year-old veteran said. “So I stayed in Florida, I stayed in Miami. At the time I was training, I was training in Miami. So I would travel to these cities, where home for me was Miami, because I wanted to be close to my agent and my dad lived in Florida, at the time, as well.” Crowder’s agent is Boca Raton-based Glenn Schwartzman. His father is former NBA player Corey Crowder.

Having his father a short drive away, in Fort Myers, also could play in the Heat’s favor in free agency. “Me and my father speak every day,” Crowder said. “If it wasn’t for him, there’s wouldn’t be a Jae Crowder in the NBA, honest to God’s truth. It’s no if and or buts about it. He helped me lock in mentally and he helped me diagnose the game mentally. He really molded me into who I am today as a basketball player and how I approached the game and my outlook on the game.”

It will be the market, likely even more than heartstrings for the Heat, that will decide whether the Heat have to punt on 2021 cap space or punt on those players. For example, if retaining Crowder becomes an issue, there are viable Plan Bs out there. One, for example, could be Paul Millsap, if the 35-year-old veteran gets squeezed out by the Nuggets going all-in with Jerami Grant’s free agency and the preference to develop Michal Porter Jr.

For Crowder, who emerged as a Heat playoff starter and contributor on both ends of the floor, it is a particularly complex equation. At 30, the veteran forward would prefer to take the long view in his negotiations, at a time when the Heat are expected to prefer offering one-year deals. “Obviously, I want security,” he told the Sun Sentinel. “The league is an up-and-down league. You never know. I’ve been a part of trades, so I know about security.”

Crowder, who made $7.8 this season, is someone the Heat could consider signing for more than one season if they were impressed enough with his contributions. He is an example of a player other teams such as the Warriors might pursue and offer a multi-year deal if the Heat does not. “We’ll have to see how the organization feels about my future here,” he said. “And I understand it’s a business, but hopefully we can come together and make both parties happy and continue to grow. I definitely want to be here. There’s no question about that.”

With their eyes set on 2021 maximum cap space, they are unlikely to offer free-agent targets more than a one-year deal. One player they can target with all their cap space is Danilo Gallinari, whom they pursued in February. $26.5 million is close to the maximum amount Gallinari can receive in a contract extension. If they can’t sign any of their targets, they could operate over the cap to re-sign free agents like Goran Dragic and Jae Crowder and also have the mid-level exception to use.

Jae Crowder did take a bit of time to see if the grass was greener elsewhere, but he didn’t take long to decide to stick with the capital “G” Green. According to league sources, Dallas and New York were the other main suitors for the 6-foot-7 winger, but after finally finding a team that was willing to play to his strengths, he wasn’t about to leave the Celtics. The restricted free agent’s return was secured with a five-year, $35 million deal.
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November 27, 2020 | 6:18 am EST Update

Real Madrid's Gabriel Deck leaving for the NBA?

Real Madrid lost star guard Facu Campazzo to the NBA (the Denver Nuggets to be specific) and there is a reported possibility that this may also happen with another player of the team. According to Marca, Real Madrid forward Gabriel Deck will be using the exit clause on his contract with “Blancos” and sign with an NBA club even next week if his team doesn’t present him with an extension offer really soon. There are some NBA teams that have “shown an interest” for the Argentinian player and he’s ready to make the jump, unless something changes with his contract situation with Real.
This rumor is part of a storyline: 7 more rumors
One longtime league executive said the past week was the most hectic of his career. In addition to the draft and free agency crammed together in an abbreviated offseason, there are so many other less-publicized tasks that teams are trying to sort through, from COVID-19 protocols to fans possibly attending games to scheduling. It’s wild to think that regular-season games are scheduled to tip off in less than a month.
For example, every day at 5 a.m., inside room 950 in the Gran Destino (where all the top-seeded teams stayed), Masai Ujiri would wake up, read his book, hop on the Peloton, and work out before heading down for breakfast. He thought nothing of his daily ritual until one morning, several weeks into the bubble, when he got a text from another former player of his: “Morning boss, you good up there?” The text was from Kawhi Leonard—Finals MVP with the Raptors, now a star on the Clippers—who was staying in room 850, directly below his old boss. Ujiri had been waking Kawhi up with his noisy workouts for weeks, but Kawhi was reluctant to say anything.
Storyline: Orlando Bubble
Ujiri told Kawhi that he would stop for the time being and joked that he would continue again when the Raptors met the Clippers in the Finals, messing with Kawhi’s sleep. Kawhi responded with the kind of trash talk that’s best read aloud in Kawhi’s dry monotone: “Haha, you know the saying ‘Don’t poke the bear’? I’m gonna call the NBA on you…get you out the bubble.”
NBA star Markelle Fultz is taking Wakanda Forever literally … he just got a foot-long image of the Black Panther tattooed on his thigh — and it’s AMAZING!! TMZ Sports has learned back in the summer, Fultz hit up “Ink Master” star Roly T-Rex about getting some ink done. And, with Chadwick Boseman’s death and the Black Lives Matter movement at its peak … the two got to thinking a “Black Panther” piece would be perfect.
November 27, 2020 | 1:58 am EST Update
And as is usually the case when the Celtics don’t turn a highly publicized rumor into a reality, we’re getting a reason why that deal never went through. According to ESPN’s Zach Lowe, the Celtics were never really that high on Turner. Boston apparently didn’t see him as a very big upgrade to their frontcourt, and was even exploring other deals to trade Turner had the deal with Indiana come to fruition. “Talking to people and reading the tea leaves as best I could, it really comes down to the Celtics didn’t want Myles Turner,” Lowe said on The Lowe Post Podcast. “I did hear from some teams around the league that the Celtics have done some preliminary research on what Myles Turner’s trade value would have been to them had they acquired him either in this deal or in a separate deal, and obviously didn’t like what they saw.”
Storyline: Myles Turner Trade?