As we reported in early July, that scenario has been seriously discussed inside the Heat and there’s sentiment to do that, because of how much the Heat loves Beal and because of the internal belief that Miami can get Wall back to All-Star level following his ruptured Achilles, which is expected to sideline him this upcoming season. But the Wizards have shown no inclination to package Beal with Wall in an attempt to purge the final four years and $171 million of Wall’s contract.
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What about the other scenario, with the Heat taking on both Wall and Beal with the understanding that Miami wouldn’t need to give up nearly as much quality in return? As we reported in early July, that scenario has been seriously discussed inside the Heat and there’s sentiment to do that, because of how much the Heat loves Beal and because of the internal belief that Miami can get Wall back to All-Star level following his ruptured Achilles, which is expected to sideline him this upcoming season.
John Wall: One, I love where I’m at. I love D.C. My loyalty is to D.C. To hear a lot of Wizards people, Tommy (Sheppard, the new general manager), (managing partner) Ted Leonsis and (Monumental Sports and Entertainment senior vice president) Zach Leonsis and all those guys, the whole community is behind me, and they’re not giving up on me, so that’s big for me. I’m not one of those guys that wants to play for multiple teams. I want to play for one organization. If it comes down to it, where you have to move around and it don’t work, they’re giving me the opportunity to come back, not this year but next year after, if I don’t play well, you trade me. I can’t be mad at nobody because they gave me the opportunity and I gave myself a chance to prove myself. That’s all I ask for.
Does it disappoint you when you see a situation like, say, Russell Westbrook, I’m sure he wanted to stay in Oklahoma City his whole career, but he had to look elsewhere once Paul George asked out? John Wall: When it gets like that, it’s nothing you really can do. Russ gave everything to that city. They love him. Without a doubt. He didn’t ask for a trade. Never will you hear me ask for a trade. The only way I’m going to get traded from D.C. is if they want to trade me themselves. And that’s one thing I think the fans will appreciate, if they ever get to that point. I’m never one of those guys that want to chase a ring or do those things. I’ve told people this before. You win a ring, nobody is going to talk about that years down the road. But if you build a legacy in a place, that’s going to go on for a long time.
According to sources, there is sentiment inside the the Heat to take the final four years and $171 million of injured point guard John Wall’s contract if it would allow Miami to land Beal, who is eligible for free agency in the summer of 2021. But Washington appears unwilling to do that at this time.
After months of speculation surrounding the future of players like John Wall, Bradley Beal and Otto Porter Jr. amid the Wizards’ struggles, team owner Ted Leonsis went on the record to confirm his star players won’t be involved in trade talks ahead of the Feb. 7 trade deadline. “I love when they go, ‘trade Bradley Beal. Trade John Wall. Trade Otto Porter.’ And I go ‘ok, for who?’ We’re not trading any of those players… wouldn’t throw in the towel on this core,” Leonsis said during an interview with WTOP radio.
Noah Frank: On possibility of dealing Wall, Beal, Porter before NBA Trade Deadline: “We’re not trading any of those players”
Ted Leonsis expressed firmly what team officials have been indicating for weeks, that if they are active at the trade deadline, it won’t be with deals involving their main guys. That means Beal is highly unlikely to be dealt. Otto Porter Jr. can be considered similarly and John Wall should go without saying given his current injury status and hefty trade kicker.
But why would the Wizards trade a young, productive star on a reasonable deal? According to the rival executives and agents, the Wizards may not and have indicated no willingness to part with Beal. The problem is Wall. “Wall is unmovable,” one of the rival executives told B/R.
Every time you ask Wall or his people, they say he wants to be a Wizard for life. It’s good to hear, and also understandable-he’s been given the keys to this franchise since he got here. But the Wizards are putting a lot of coin in his pocket, too. “It’s on John to demand more of John,” a veteran Eastern Conference front office executive said last week.
Some in the league believe the Knicks are stocking up their young assets and will make a major play for Wall if he becomes available. The Wizards (9-14) were said to be ready to break it up after their disastrous start. It would have to be a three-team deal with the Knicks throwing in Ntilikina, Dotson, Courtney Lee (for cap purposes), a 2020 first-round and second-round pick.
Alan Hahn: Literally no one believes this. No one. This is the definition of Fake News
NBA teams remain uncertain about the trade bonus in John Wall’s contract, league sources confirmed to ESPN. As Adrian Wojnarowski reported earlier this month, the All-Star point guard — along with the rest of the Washington Wizards’ roster — is available to discuss in trade scenarios. Interest in Wall is close to nonexistent around the league, per sources. Still, teams are going through the complicated exercise of trying to understand how a Wall trade would even work.
Ironically, the team they just lost to could be a starting point for a turnaround. The belief is the entire roster is available, there are no longer untouchables, sources said. This obviously includes stars John Wall and Bradley Beal, but Houston hasn’t had any deep discussions for any Wizard yet. They merely placed a few calls, the first being two weeks ago.
The Washington Wizards are floundering at 7-12. While the Wizards are only two games back of the eighth seed in the Eastern Conference, the dysfunction in Washington is leading to widespread speculation that the organization will blow things up and trade away major players like John Wall or Bradley Beal. “John Wall is a very different situation [from Bradley Beal],” said Wojnarowski on the Woj Pod. “You can count on one hand, and probably with just a couple of fingers places that really might have interest in taking his contract on and what it all means to bring him in. “I would never say there’s no market for John Wall, but I think Bradley Beal has a much broader market. But if Washington was going to do something, they would have to get every last asset they could for Bradley Beal.”
On Tuesday, ahead of the Wizards’ next game against the Clippers, Wall made his first comments on the matter. He noted it was the first time he’s been mentioned in a credible trade report. “I don’t know what [trade rumors] feel like,” he said.
While discussing the possibility of leaving, Wall made it clear he doesn’t want to be traded. “I love being here. I want to finish my career here,” he said. “That’s all I can control is playing basketball. I can’t control nothing else.”
SLAM Magazine: John Wall: “To hear certain things like being traded… It’s kind of funny and frustrating at the same time. But I’ve been through worse things. I just stand over top of all of that.” 💯 (via @HoopDistrictDC) pic.twitter.com/uXzQnwGu1I
Several executives said Tuesday that finding a suitor for Wall would be difficult at best. One put it more bluntly. “If they can get anything for Wall and don’t do it, they are idiots,” the executive said.
Though an ESPN report suggested that the Wizards are willing to move anyone on the roster in possible trades — including cornerstones Wall and Beal — league sources dispute whether that’s a plan the franchise is truly willing to execute. For one, the value for every Wizard, including the all-star backcourt, couldn’t be any lower than it is right now. Some have suggested that a public shaming might be a necessary wake-up call for players who have become way too comfortable with the fat contracts owner Ted Leonsis has handed out in recent years.
“With the news we had today, that’s either going to boost us or fuck us up a little bit,” Bradley Beal told The Athletic after Monday’s practice. “We’ll see. “We’ve already aired out a lot of our problems the last couple of years. It’s not like any of our stuff is a secret,” Beal said. “We just got to do it on the floor. It’s not like we have bad character guys or bad guys. We’re just not getting it [done] in between the lines… Maybe it’s entitlement. Maybe we’re too cool. Maybe we feel we can flip it on a switch. All the things we’ve said in the past that’s been a problem with us. I don’t know. That’s the annoying part about it. You can’t pinpoint it as one thing.”
In talking with people around the league, it’s clear that Beal’s value stands high and above Porter’s or Wall’s. Beal has three years and $81 million remaining on his contract, including this season, generally considered fair value.
Fred Katz: From talking with people around the NBA, the league is as down on Wall’s value as you’d imagine. Supermax deal ($170-plus million over four years) starts next year, and people are genuinely wondering about his locker room dynamic. Today isn’t helping that.
The Wizards’ thoughts of trading either Wall or Beal are very preliminary, according to a person familiar with the situation. By putting this information out there, they are simply letting other teams know they will listen. Despite the whirlwind of reports, any major deal would likely take a long time to orchestrate. The Wizards would likely take months to lay the groundwork, even if matters get worse on the court.
Although Washington may be floundering during a 5-11 start to the season, there is a belief that the team has zero plans to move on from either of its franchise cornerstones, based on conversations with multiple league sources who have familiarity with the Wizards and how their front office operates. A Wizards spokesman, meanwhile, cited team policy by saying President of Basketball Operations Ernie Grunfeld “doesn’t comment on rumors, so he won’t comment on this one.”
When asked if he would be “surprised” if the Wizards made a deal involving Wall or Beal, Brooks responded: “I mean, like I said, the start that we’re having, there’s going to be rumors. It’s just part of the business. It’s just part of it. I’ve been in the league a long time, that’s just always been the case.”
Candace Buckner: Bradley Beal on whether the report of him and Wall being made available came as news to him: “I mean, I’m not going to be naïve to it, you know. I have a phone just like everyone else, so I’ve heard those rumors weeks ago.”
Washington had hopes that forwards Otto Porter and Kelly Oubre could be centerpieces of deals that could return an impact third star, but those players have fetched minimal interest on the market. Porter has a massive contract on the books, including three years, $81 million left.
“I think they’ve had enough time, but they really haven’t (broken) through,” Dudley said. “I can see by the All-Star break or summer time one of these pieces moving. It’s going to be good for them. If it’s John, or Otto or Brad, one of them three, I think their next move is going to be good for both teams.”
Word is the Wolves did try to engage Washington — another team falling well short of expectations — in trade talks for the sharpshooting guard Bradley Beal. But the Wizards have kept Beal off limits amid their 4-9 start. They would naturally prefer to trade the struggling Otto Porter, or perhaps even John Wall, but both possess hard-to-move contracts. My pal Zach Lowe at ESPN recently did a deep dive on just how hard Wall will be to trade once his “supermax” contract extension kicks in next season.
Granted, the money will make any negotiations complex. If there is a Wall suitor that makes sense, it’s the Miami Heat, who need an injection of star talent, and are financially saddled entering next summer’s potentially starry free agency period. Stuck with Hassan Whiteside and Tyler Johnson through 2020, the Heat are in a position to take a risk and inject some energy into a roster replete with tough players, but lacking in ceiling. It was a poorly-kept secret that the Heat were part of the preseason sweepstakes for Jimmy Butler, which ended over the weekend as the Timberwolves dealt him to the 76ers. That move served to beef up an established Eastern Conference hierarchy that includes neither Miami nor Washington—a Wall trade between the two teams would be more about shaping plans for the future.
Wall already spends a large chunk of his summers living in Miami. There is ongoing chatter that his partying habit has become an issue, which he’s addressed publicly. But the Heat have long held a firm organizational belief in their ability to get the most out of their players, with a focus on conditioning and discipline and a track record of rehabilitating careers. It would still be a serious long-term financial risk for the Heat, but if nothing else it’s a fresh approach to rejiggering a team that has grown somewhat stagnant, and clearly fallen short of its intended ceiling.
A Wall deal before July 1 is unlikely in part due to complexities surrounding his 15 percent trade kicker — believed to be the first trade kicker that would be spread over the length of a supermax contract. Trade kickers cannot lift a player’s salary above his maximum in the year he is traded, meaning Wall’s payout could shrink if the Wizards trade him in 2019-20 once he shifts onto his supermax deal — and perhaps close to $0 in that 2019-20 season, sources say.
If they trade him before then, they might owe him a giant lump sum, sources say. (Wall’s 2018-19 salary of $19.2 million is well below his eligible maximum because he signed his current deal under a lower salary-cap figure.) None of this is 100 percent clear in the collective bargaining agreement, and it will need to be studied further if it proves relevant. Rises in salary cap at some point during the length of Wall’s supermax could trigger further trade kicker payments to him. We might be down to one plausible candidate to send Washington real value for Wall at some point over the next year-plus: Phoenix, run by an impatient owner, Robert Sarver, without a seasoned GM to check his most dangerous impulses.
Steve Kyler: Huh? Wizards not remotely interested in trading John Wall.
Larry Berger: Hearing 3 impact guys available – Wash exploring moving John Wall, Det. willing to entertain offers for Reggie Jackson and Stanley Johnson.
Most, if not all, NBA talent scouts, would have Wall, based on ability and potential, rated significantly ahead of Dragic, and it’s not as if the Heat are in any position to throw in draft picks to sweeten such a deal, with a pair of first-rounders still owed for Dragic. But the Wall possibilities do appear to grow more interesting by the day, particularly at moments of venting. The Heat’s next home game is against the Wizards, on Monday night, so perhaps we’ll see if there is a welcome wagon in place.
In talking to multiple persons with knowledge of the situation as recent as Wednesday afternoon, the Wizards remain determined to keep their core intact which means Beal stays put with John Wall, Markieff Morris, Marcin Gortat, Kelly Oubre and Otto Porter.
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September 15, 2019 | 4:39 pm EDT Update
The NBA is looking to further crack down on tampering, proposing a new top fine of $10 million for teams conducting the practice, according to a league memo obtained by ESPN. Other maximum-fine levels could be raised significantly as well, provided the league’s board of governors approves the measures Sept. 20.
If a team enters into an unauthorized deal with a player, it can be fined up to $6 million — and the player can get hit with a $250,000 fine as well. Statements or conduct detrimental to the NBA could come with a $5 million fine now, up from the previous ceiling of $1 million. And a rule violation with no specific penalty could merit a $10 million fine, up from $2.5 million — the amount that Silver fined former LA Clippers owner Donald Sterling while banning him for life from the NBA in 2014 after he was found to have made racist remarks.
Other proposals that the board of governors will consider: a requirement that a team report, within 24 hours, any instance of an agent or player representative asking for a benefit that is not allowed under the salary cap or collective bargaining agreement (“unauthorized benefits”); a requirement that teams preserve communications with players and their agents for one year; new channels for teams and team employees to anonymously report rules violations or tampering; prohibiting players from inducing players under contract to request trades.
The Nets were among the big winners in free agency and claimed they had no idea Durant was signing with them until he posted it on Instagram. According to GM Sean Marks, Durant committed to the Nets before he knew he’d be offered a contract.
In reality, a source told the Daily News that the Nets were confident deals for Durant and Kyrie Irving were done the day before free agency. That doesn’t necessarily mean the Nets organization tampered. There are many different avenues for recruitment and information without a direct line between player/agent and team. People are connected everywhere in 2019. But it does underscore that tampering is difficult to prove or enforce.
Dane Moore: Jared Terrell — who played for the Timberwolves last season on a two-way contract and was around the Wolves facilities for much of this summer — will not be back with the Wolves this season. Terrell will be playing for Hapoel Eilat in Israel.
Dwain Price: Dirk Nowitzki: “We were in Europe with the kids for almost two months, and it was nice not to have the discipline of dieting and finding a workout spot everywhere I went. It’s almost like regular life.” @Dirk Nowitzki @Dallas Mavericks #Mavs
September 15, 2019 | 1:07 pm EDT Update
“I’m looking forward to playing point guard this season,” said Justise Winslow, whose Robin’s House Family Foundation teamed up Carnival Cruise Line to host more than 25 underprivileged kids for a day of fun Sunday aboard Carnival Horizon while the ship was docked at PortMiami. “We’ll see how that works out, but that’s my plan, is to play point guard and be the point guard for this team.”
“But everyone has ideas of what they want their role to be, and for most people it never fits what they want,” Winslow added after saying he wants to play as a point guard this season. “Everyone always wants a bigger role, whatever team you’re on. So you just have to understand that as a basketball player — everyone wants the ball late in the games, everyone wants the ball in their hands, everybody wants every play to be run for them.”
With the Heat trading Josh Richardson to the 76ers as part of the Butler deal this offseason, Winslow said of the departure of his close friend and fellow member of the Heat’s 2015 draft class: “Just the emotional standpoint, that’s someone I grew close to. So even more than just having him as a teammate, just having him around the city, being able to go to his house, go out to eat, having that just easy communication, I’ll always have by my side. As a competitor, it won’t be too hard. It’s part of the business, but the emotional part is a little hard, but we’ll be Rook 1 and Rook 2 forever.”
The signature shot in Mavericks history – and one of the most copied and influential moves in NBA history – will be emblazoned on the American Airlines Center court this season, and beyond. Dirk Nowitzki’s iconic one-legged fadeway jump shot will be silhouetted on both ends of the AAC court, replacing the Mavericks’ alternate logo that was there last season.
“That’s super-sweet,” Nowitzki said Sunday at his Pro Celebrity Tennis Classic on the SMU campus. “That was a surprise to me. It’s of course an honor. I don’t think anybody else has done that before. I’m super, super thankful to Mark (Cuban). I think it was actually his idea for the Mavericks to execute that. It’s going to be surreal going to games and seeing that right there. It’s definitely special.”
He’s the NBA’s sixth-leading all-time scorer and will have a stretch of Olive Street in front of AAC renamed Nowitzki Way. While no word has come yet about when a statue will be erected in front of the building, it’s fair to say that the day will come sooner than later. “Yeah, it’s a lot, but of course, that will be something I’ll always be proud of,” Nowitzki said of all the honors. “If I take my kids to the game in 10 years and driving on Nowitzki Way, I mean, it doesn’t get much better than that. It’s been a beautiful summer, I got to say. Getting honored everywhere. All the sports teams here and went to all sorts of galas and they honored me. It’s been special.”
September 15, 2019 | 11:40 am EDT Update
When asked on if the Gasol brothers will be in Tokyo, Japan for the 2020 Olympics, Gasol didn’t make any promises: “At this point in your career, you don’t know. You want to be there, you hope to be there, but you’re not gonna make any promises. Potentially this could be my last World Cup”.
“It’s been a good three months”, he said jokingly. “I’m very happy and fortunate. I’m blessed to be in this position.” Gasol, 34 was also voted in the All-Star five, but still, he said: “the sun will come up again, the world will keep going, but we get to be world champions”.
Tim Reynolds: Ricky Rubio: ““We weren’t the most talented team. We weren’t the bigger team. Put anything you want, but we were the team with the biggest heart and we showed it tonight and we showed it during the whole tournament.”
Tim Reynolds: More from MVP Ricky Rubio: “I lost my mom three years ago and I know she was behind me, pushing me every day to get the best out of me. There’s nobody in this world who loved me more than her and she’s still driving me every day. She’s not here, but I feel it.”
September 15, 2019 | 11:23 am EDT Update
The Toronto Raptors center becomes the second player to win an NBA title and a FIBA world gold medal in the same year, joining Lamar Odom — who did it for the Los Angeles Lakers and USA Basketball in 2010. Gasol also became the 19th to win either an NBA or WNBA crown along with a gold medal, either of the Olympic or World Cup variety, in the same year. The first 18 all did it for the U.S. This time, Vamos España! “NBA champion and a World Cup champion as well,” Gasol said. “What can I say? How does it sound to you? I feel very fortunate to be in this position and be able to play this game and help these guys be part of history of Spanish basketball.”
Mark Woods: The All Star Five for the World Cup: Bogdan Bogdanovic (Serbia) – the leading scorer in the tournament – Evan Fournier (France), Ricky Rubio (Spain), Luis Scola (Argentina), Marc Gasol (Spain)
September 15, 2019 | 9:55 am EDT Update
Nikos Varlas: Asia favors Spain! World Champions in 2006 and 2019 #FIBAWC pic.twitter.com/m2ytKONV2h
Donatas Urbonas: Bogdan Bogdanovic and Evan Fournier share the first row in the World Cup final, which might indicate that they’re going to make the all-tournament team. 2-3 other players likely share the floor right now.
September 15, 2019 | 7:18 am EDT Update
France are the winners of FIBA Basketball World Cup bronze medal. The team coached by Vincent Collet beat Australia 67-59 with a comeback in the second half. France was led defensively by Nicolas Batum while offensively Nando De Colo paced the team with 19 points.
Tim Reynolds: Jazz center @Rudy Gobert on the bronze: “It means everything. Obviously it’s not the one we wanted. We all know that. But being able to come back _ we’re the only team that was on the podium five years ago and on the podium now. So it shows our heart.”
Globally, there has been a lot of talk about Team USA’s absences, and the 32 players who withdraw their names from the preliminary roster. Fournier, 26 was critical of his competitors in the NBA: “It does [bother me]. To be honest, when you look at LeBron James, Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving, and all these guys… they came here already and won, so it’s fine. But for friends of mine like Tobias [Harris], I thought it was a great opportunity for him to see something different and compete. I think they don’t realize how beneficial this is for their career. It’s a great tournament, great basketball, super intense. I know you have to work on your game, but this is way better.”
Tim Reynolds: Magic G @EvanFourmizz after France win: “It feels good to finish on a good note. When you see Australia, the players, Bogut, Dellavedova, I know those guys and it’s awful for them. But that’s definitely what we didn’t want, to finish the tournament feeling like (crap) like that.”
September 15, 2019 | 5:35 am EDT Update
SiriusXM NBA Radio: While speaking with @TheFrankIsola Pacers Center Myles Turner (@Original_Turner) was very optimistic about Victor Oladipo’s (@VicOladipo) return from injury. “He [Victor Oladipo] will be back a lot sooner than people think”.
Of course, everyone in Milwaukee wants Giannis to stick around until the day he calls it a career. If he were to sign the deal, it would prevent him from entering free agency in July of 2021, when his current contract is set to expire. It’s long been assumed that the Bucks will give him anything he wants, and on Saturday, it was confirmed by general manager Jon Horst at a town hall with fans of the team. “First of all, the answer for it, right now, is we can’t talk and negotiate anything,” Horst said. “So Giannis, basically a year from now, will be eligible for a supermax extension. At that time, of course, he will be offered a supermax extension.”
LiAngelo entered the G League player pool last season and went unsigned, without a peep of interest from teams the entirety of the season. During a recent radio interview with Big Boy, Lonzo Ball gave some interesting thoughts on LiAngelo’s game and whether he could hang in the NBA. “I think he can make it. He’s 6-foot-6, he can shoot, he’s 240 pounds, so he’s strong enough to guard anybody. I mean, as long he gets healthy and works on his handle, he should be alright.”
If the U.S. wanted to be a defensive-minded, versatile and small team, there were no players in the roster pool that fit that definition more than Gordon. By all accounts, Gordon would have taken the call if the U.S. called him up to the roster. There was no reporting to suggest he even got an invitation to the tryout or specifically declined an invitation.
Michael Jordan, Scottie Pippen, Lamar Odom, LeBron James, and Kyrie Irving. Those are the only five players to win an NBA title and a gold medal in the same year, whether it was in FIBA or Olympic competition, with Pippen doing it twice. It is an exclusive club – one that Marc Gasol is on the cusp of joining.
A mere three months after helping the Toronto Raptors win the NBA Finals, Gasol has led Spain to the gold medal game at the World Cup. It’ll be Spain against Argentina on Sunday, with both nations looking for their second title. Spain won the world championship in 2006 when Gasol was a 21-year-old backup, and Argentina won the inaugural tournament in 1950. “I’m so deep in the rabbit hole right now that I don’t get to see much light,” Gasol said. “You’re so focused on your opponent, your next rival, recovering, doing whatever’s necessary to win games that you don’t look at the big picture. It’s been great. I’m very fortunate. “I knew that committing to the national team this summer would not be easy physically. But it’s so worth it, and not just because we’re in the final game.”
Nick DePaula: Derrick Rose officially launched his Adidas DRose 10 sneaker in China this week, becoming just the 8th player in NBA history to have a signature series with more than 10 consecutive models. His shirt crosses out “DONE DONE DONE” and reads: “NOT DONE YET” pic.twitter.com/tPTitT0UCy
Sanders was asked during an appearance on “The Kyle Kulinski Show” who he’d pick between James and Jordan, and unsurprisingly this is another area where his opinion differs from the current president: Kulinski: Last question: Michael Jordan or LeBron James? Sanders: LeBron James. Kulinski: Is that because of the policy he just supported with you? Sanders: Well actually, yes, I think LeBron has been willing to do what a lot of athletes are not and get involved in the political process, put money into education, and I respect that.
September 14, 2019 | 6:36 pm EDT Update
A USA Basketball spokesman responded Saturday to comments made on ESPN suggesting Kings point guard De’Aaron Fox would not be allowed to represent Team USA in the future because he withdrew from consideration for this summer’s FIBA World Cup team.
Conley spent 12 seasons with the Grizzlies, more than a third of his life, and so “this is still home,” the 31-year-old said. “It’s all I know.” Still, he arrived in Memphis for the first time since being traded to the Utah Jazz in June, and even the flight Thursday night felt strange. He went to the house he still owns here, where half the furniture has already been moved to Utah and thought, “this doesn’t even feel like my home anymore.”
“Not a lot of players get that connection with the team or the organization. Like I really did care about how the team would fare after I left if I got traded, who they got in the trade,” Conley said. “It was almost like I was negotiating the deal for them, like make sure you get this, that and the other because you want to have more picks or more people, and I’m just thrilled to see the guys they got. They got a heck of a future in front of them because of the trades they were able to make for Marc, or myself, or Chandler (Parsons), and just really turned it over well.”
They were talking about his decision to switch to No. 10 with the Jazz, instead of wearing the No. 11 he had throughout his Grizzlies career. That number, like Conley, ultimately belongs to Memphis. “If I ever play (for) Memphis again, that’s the number I’ll wear,” said Conley, whose first game in Memphis with the Jazz will be Nov. 15. “I’m not wearing it anywhere else.”
Hornets Sports & Entertainment Chairman Michael Jordan today announced that Gabe Plotkin, Founder and Chief Investment Officer, Melvin Capital, and Daniel Sundheim, Founder and Chief Investment Officer of D1 Capital, will join HSE as partners. The transaction is subject to NBA approval.
“I’m excited to welcome Gabe and Dan as my partners in Hornets Sports & Entertainment,” said Michael Jordan. “While I will continue to run the Charlotte Hornets, make all decisions related to the team and organization, and remain the team’s NBA Governor, Gabe and Dan’s investment in the franchise is invaluable, as we continue to modernize, add new technology and strive to compete with the best in the NBA. Both Gabe and Dan are industry standard-setters and proven leaders, with a belief in philanthropy and a passion for the game of basketball. They share my commitment to Charlotte and the Carolinas, and I look forward to working with and learning from them.”
September 14, 2019 | 5:03 pm EDT Update
Michael Jordan has agreed to sell a large piece of the Charlotte Hornets to two New York-based investors, the Charlotte Observer has learned.
Jordan is bringing in Gabe Plotkin, a founder of Melvin Captal, and Daniel Sundheim, a founder of DI Capital. Both prospective owners must be approved by the NBA, but that is already in process and the sale is expected to close in the next couple of weeks, a league source confirmed.
Jordan controls about a 97 percent stake in the Hornets. This agreement has no provision for him to give up majority control of the team or its operation. A source familiar with Jordan’s thinking said he plans to own and run the Hornets “a good, long time.”
Mark Leonard was the owner of a car wash here Compton. Witnesses say he was shot and killed after an argument with an associate. Investigators are hoping Kawhi’s NBA fame and his return to Los Angeles may jog some memories about the murder and may bring some clues to who was behind it. “Now they are finding out this was Kawhi’s father and they may not have known that back then. Although it may be risky to get involved, they may be compelled to come forward, Lt. Shaun McCarthy of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department said.
September 14, 2019 | 4:56 pm EDT Update
In case you had any doubts, the Milwaukee Bucks want to keep Giannis Antetokounmpo around. During a recent event, Bucks GM Jon Horst confirmed what everyone already assumed, which is that the Bucks are going to offer the reigning MVP a supermax extension next summer when he’s eligible for the huge deal.
Horst’s response: “First of all, the answer for now is that we can’t talk and negotiate anything. So Giannis, basically, a year from now will be eligible for a supermax extension. At that time, of course, he will be offered a supermax extension.”
Adrian Wojnarowski: The NBA’s agents have signed a letter that informs the NCAA that player agents will not register for the NCAA’s proposed agent certification process, according to the letter obtained by ESPN. The @TheNBPA will transmit letter to the NCAA soon, per sources.
Adrian Wojnarowski: NBPA has been talking with the NCAA on finding common ground on behalf of the agents, sources said. In letter, agents are willing to take bi-annual online seminar on protecting players amateurism. Entire discussion has been centered on players “testing the waters” of NBA Draft.
Adrian Wojnarowski: Contents of signed letter the NBPA will send to NCAA on behalf of player agents refusing to be a part of NCAA certification process to advise undergrads testing draft waters.
September 14, 2019 | 2:49 pm EDT Update
Popovich said it’s too early to think about what USA Basketball needs to do before getting ready for the Tokyo Games. But he warned — just as two-time gold medalist Kobe Bryant did on Friday — that the days of American romps to gold are done. “There are a lot of great teams in the world,” Popovich said. “It’s not written in stone that the United States is supposed to walk to a championship. That’s pretty old-school thinking. Even the teams that have won in the past had a lot of close calls.”
Serbia guard Bogdan Bogdanovic finished the 2019 World Cup with some phenomenal stats, including the number of 3-pointers he made in the tournament. In fact, Bogdanovic hit more 3-pointers by his own than seven national teams that participated in the World Cup.
The Raptors-branded sports hijab, the first of its kind in the NBA, has been in the works since the playoffs this past spring, said Jerry Ferguson, senior director of marketing at Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment. The inspiration to release the hijab came from the Hijabi Ballers, Ferguson said, referring to a group of young Muslim women in Toronto who play basketball every Sunday, and advocate for increased participation of Muslim women in sports.
Hijabi Ballers helped to design the black hijab — which will be priced at $39.99 at Scotiabank Arena — and the group was featured front and centre in Friday’s launch video. The founder of Hijabi Ballers, Amreen Kadwa, said she’s happy with the end product, adding the Raptors were “amazing” in showcasing what the group was about.
September 14, 2019 | 12:04 pm EDT Update
Shams Charania: In an effort to prevent tampering, NBA sent memo to teams about improving compliance, @TheAthletic @Stadium has learned. Memo proposes that a lead team ops member certify annually that it didn’t engage in impermissible free agency talks; max fine amounts raised significantly.
Shams Charania: Proposed increases in NBA’s maximum fine penalties for tampering and cap circumvention, @TheAthletic @Stadium has learned: – Tampering with player/team personnel: $10M, up from $5M. – Unauthorized agreements: $6M for team; $250K for player.
September 14, 2019 | 9:58 am EDT Update
“People want to play the blame game, there’s no blame to be placed anywhere,” Popovich said. “They want to play the shame game, like we should be ashamed because we didn’t win a gold medal? That’s a ridiculous attitude. It’s immature, it’s arrogant, and it shows that whoever thinks that doesn’t respect all the other teams in the world and doesn’t respect that these guys did the best they could.”
“I don’t fault anybody that decided not to come — everybody’s got a life,” Popovich said. “Things happen in people’s families. People have things going on. Could be injuries, could be personal commitments that they have. Whoever came, came. “This group I couldn’t have been happier with any other group no matter who would’ve come. They wouldn’t have worked any harder this group.”
Tim Reynolds: Donovan Mitchell, world-class good dude, was the last American to leave the court in the pre-warmup period. He took off his sneakers and tossed them into the crowd — making sure a young fan he was pointing to got them.
September 14, 2019 | 2:22 am EDT Update
Sebastian Telfair is FREEEEEEEEEEEE!!!! … for now. The ex-NBA star and former H.S. prodigy is out of prison just days after he was sentenced to 3.5 years in his gun case … but there’s a chance Telfair could end up back behind bars. Here’s the deal … 34-year-old Telfair was convicted of possessing an illegal firearm stemming from a June 2017 incident where he was caught with an arsenal of weapons during a traffic stop.
According to court docs obtained by TMZ Sports … Telfair was released on $500,000 bail. As part of his agreement with the court, Telfair must surrender his passports and remain in New York City. Telfair also agreed to be confined to house arrest from 7 PM to 7 AM daily while also wearing an electronic monitoring ankle bracelet.
Livingston found as much value in being a good teammate as he did in unleashing his own game. That was his game, too. It does make you wonder what is happening to the league. The fact he is just announcing this suggests, as the behind-the-scenes chatter said, he was trying to keep playing. It seems he couldn’t find a home. If so, what does that say about the league?
Steve Kerr: It’s hard to express how thankful I am to have coached this man the past 5 years. What an amazing combination of talent, grace, & character. I will miss his calm leadership,his presence, his passing & his turnaround jumpers in the post. Nothing but great things ahead!
“Dot’s a legend,” David West said via text. Livingston’s teammates called him Dot, a spinoff of S-Dot, as in S. Livingston. Jay-Z, whose government name is Sean Carter, made it a popular nickname for “S” names with his 1999 song “S. Carter.” “He came back from an injury that would have sealed the fate of most players,” West said. “He had a determination that should be admired for years to come. Great teammate and even better person. Proud to call him a friend.”
He really appreciated winning. He really liked being around the guys. He really liked good conversation. I’ve seen him pull a reporter aside and compliment a piece. I’ve also seen him politely chastise a reporter about a piece in defense of his teammates. I’ve heard him be critical about himself and I’ve heard him break down what a teammate needs to work on. I’ve seen him give that look-you-in-the-eye thank you to the workers most others overlook.
Australia and Bogut — if he plays — will face the wrath of much of the Beijing arena when they take on France for the bronze medal. The footage of Bogut swearing repeatedly and making accusations of favouritism was widely featured in Chinese media. Many reports called for FIBA to ban him.
Baynes was typically staunch when leaving training, delivering his message as he breezed by journalists to the bus. “I’ve got three words for you; nothing else, no questions, nothing,” he said. “Regroup. Refocus. Reinvigorate.”
The loose ball foul against Andrew Bogut is the one most will point to – he sure did – with the centre apparently making contact with Marc Gasol, who would hit a pair of free throws to give Spain a one-point lead. Patty Mills would split a pair on the other end, sending the game to overtime. “They’re furious. They’re crushed and furious,” Longley said. “Where their fury is directed, I can’t tell you. Probably all over the place. It’s very quiet in there. That’s the team we lost to in Rio, but we felt like we deserved to win it. We felt like we played well enough to win it. Yeah, it’s pretty quiet in there.”
Rose and Noah were teammates on the Bulls and New York Knicks. Rose says Noah is a free spirit, loving guy and wants his son — PJ — to grow up like Noah. The closest teammate I’ve had—other than Randall Hampton in high school—was Joakim Noah, and that’s where Arthur Ashe comes in again. A lot of people don’t mess with Joakim because they think there’s some bad shit that comes with him or just how outspoken he is or whatever. For me, I can respect that, knowing everything about him, like for him to be who he is and act the way he is. It’s an amazing story behind it. I actually want my son PJ to grow up to be like Joakim. You know, a free spirit, a loving guy. Joakim loves people. He’s just a great role model. And his story is special. And think of Jo. To be this silver-spoon kid, his dad is a big star, rich and famous, and he don’t want nothing to do with that. Like, “Nah, I’m doing my own thing.” Gets multiple contracts by himself when he easily could have lived off of his pops forever. His pops could’ve got him jobs. But he didn’t want that. He’s got his own individuality. That’s what I love about Jo, how he created something on his own.
Charles Barkley wasn’t playing to the crowd when talking about how much he believes in the current 76ers. On the day that he became the eighth former Sixer to have a sculpture unveiled in his honor at the team’s practice facility, Barkley let it be known that he has the highest expectations for this coming season. “I already picked the 76ers to win the championship next year, so no pressure,” he said during a stirring acceptance speech before the unveiling of his statue. “I mean that sincerely.”
Former German national team and NBA superstar Dirk Nowitzki has been appointed as Chair of the Players Commission on Saturday at the first FIBA Central Board meeting for the new term. With this appointment, he also becomes a member of the 25-member FIBA Central Board. Nowitzki has had an illustrious playing career for Germany and consistently was a star performer at numerous FIBA tournaments for more than 15 years. He led his country to its best-ever result at a FIBA Basketball World Cup in 2002, finishing in third place, the nation’s only podium finish at the world level. He also led Germany’s run to the Final of FIBA EuroBasket in 2005, finishing in second place.
Klay Thompson: These past few weeks have been so unimaginably hard for Bahamians, especially on the islands of Abaco and Freeport. People have lost everything- loved ones, family, possessions, homes. Whatever you cherish it’s gone for these communities. This is far from a quick fix, it will take years and years of rebuilding. The @thompsonfamilyfoundation will do everything in its power to help with relief efforts right now and for many years to come. All contributions no matter how big or small will go long way and are greatly appreciated.
Klay Thompson: Secondly, shame on our current administration for not welcoming our Bahamian neighbors in their greatest time of need. I’ve been so lucky to visit my family in Nassau since childhood, and in those times I’ve seen countless Americans use the Bahamian islands as their playground for letting loose and vacationing. And now we turn our back on the people who welcomed us with open arms, when they’ve lost everything !? There’s no excuse for this… and if you have one your a real piece of 💩 Bahamians will persevere, but help along the way is greatly appreciated. Thank you ❤️ 🇧🇸
NBA star James Harden is being sued by a man who claims he lied about the use of a $30 million mansion in Beverly Hills according to TMZ. The man, George Santo Pietro, owns the mansion which includes 8 bedrooms, 10 bathrooms, a gym, a spa and a pool. TMZ said Harden signed a contract to use the mansion for one week and he paid over $82,000. One of the things Santo Pietro said that there were details in the contract that stated Harden could not have more than seven adults on the property at any time.
September 13, 2019 | 9:00 pm EDT Update
Bob Rule, one of the original Sonics whose promising NBA career was cut by short by a devastating Achilles injury, died last week. Rule, who lived in Minnesee, Calif., passed away in his sleep at his sister’s Sherry Randle’s home in nearby Riverside. He was 75 years old.
During the 1969-70 season, Rule gained national prominence while averaging 24.6 points and 10.6 rebounds. He garnered a spot in the 1970 NBA All-Star Game and became the third Sonics All-Star following Walt Hazzard (1968) and Wilkens (1969). Four games into the 1970-71 season, Rule’s season ended after tearing his Achilles’ tendon and was never the same again. He averaged 29.8 points that season.