The Boston Celtics have acquired three-time All-Star and 2018-19 All-NBA guard Kemba Walker and a future second round pick (the least favorable of Brooklyn and New York’s 2020 picks) in a sign-and-trade agreement with the Charlotte Hornets in exchange for guard Terry Rozier and a future protected second round pick, the team announced today.
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Marc J. Spears: Michael Jordan statement on Kemba Walker pic.twitter.com/CF6L6tc3Al
Jaylen Brown: Welcome to the city my guy @Kemba Walker 🔥
Adam Himmelsbach: Kemba on @SportsCenter: “When you think of the Celtics you think of championships and winning. And that’s what I’m about. I’m about competing for championships and winning.”
Adam Himmelsbach: Some clarity on the Rozier/Kemba sign-and-trade: The Cs did this to keep options open for potential three-team sign-and-trades. But even if it stays as a 2-team transaction, Boston is expected to receive some compensation from the Hornets.
Chris Grenham: Bobby Marks just said on The Jump that the three-team deal between Boston, Charlotte and Brooklyn is “dead.” Cited the Nets lack of incentive as reasoning
“The Hornets offer, I’m told, wasn’t even really close to the max contract offer of $190M.” NBA Insider @ShamsCharania on Kemba Walker leaving his longtime Charlotte organization for a “fresh start” in Boston.
Of the 200 some-players in what NBA executives are calling one of the best free agent classes in history, the Mavericks entered the weekend zeroed in on roughly 15. And of those roughly 15, Walker and less-coveted target Nikola Mirotic (who agreed to terms with Barcelona on the EuroLeague) are the only ones, as of late Saturday, known to be off the board.
The Boston Celtics will renounce the rights to guard Terry Rozier, making him an unrestricted free agent, to open a max slot for free agent Kemba Walker, league sources told Yahoo Sports.
Cody Zeller: pic.twitter.com/XhN7KuETk8
Adrian Wojnarowski: As reported this week, the Celtics and Walker both intend for the All-Star guard to commit to a four-year, $141M maximum contract once free agency opens on Sunday at 6 PM. Walker is traveling to New England to meet with Celtics officials at 6 PM ET.
Chris Grenham: Woj on @SportsCenter: “He has moved on from Charlotte. (Boston and Kemba) will get together on Sunday night. … Kemba Walker is on his way to the Celtics.”
According to an NBA source, there is mutual interest between the Knicks and Rozier. But it all depends on Walker, whose preference all along was to stay in Charlotte but the Hornets have not stepped up with a max offer in preliminary contract talks.
Kemba Walker is eligible to re-sign with the Hornets on a five-year super-max contract that projects to be worth $221 million. Instead, he sounds increasingly likely to join the Celtics. Stephen A. Smith on ESPNews: “My sources tell me that Kemba Walker has informed the Charlotte Hornets and Michael Jordan he does not want to be there. He was offered a five-year deal. It wasn’t the super-max deal he was qualified for. It was somewhere in the ballpark of 160-plus million.”
Adrian Wojnarowski on ESPN: “Kemba Walker is poised to commit to the Boston Celtics on Sunday night when free agency opens. He has essentially left Charlotte in his rearview mirror. They were too far apart on a contract.”
The Chicago Bulls, Boston Celtics (if they don’t land Kemba Walker), Phoenix Suns and Mavericks could consider an offer sheet for Brogdon and test the Bucks.
Mike Fisher: BREAKING: As rock-solid as @Adrian Wojnarowski likely is on Kemba to #Celtics … a source close to Walker situation tells me the All-Star PG has yet to inform other suitors ( #Mavs and more) that the race is over. pic.twitter.com/d5ZoaaEpTG
Mike Fisher: If Kemba to Boston means Boston isn’t bidding on Brogdon, that absolutely does NOT mean the Bucks can relax, thinking nobody else will bid on Brogdon. Other teams are examining what the RFA ‘magic number’ is that might make #Bucks flinch. pic.twitter.com/KiJayePSmR
Chris Grenham: Woj on @SportsCenter says the Celtics are “more than a strong front-runner” for Kemba. Added that Boston “could have a commitment as soon as Sunday night.”
But when the Celtics traded center Aron Baynes at the deadline, shedding his $5.4 million salary and putting them in position to open up enough cap space to pursue a maximum-salary free agent, it was clear that they were up to something. And a league source confirmed that Boston has interest in Hornets free agent Kemba Walker, so there is suddenly a chance that Boston will be able to replace one All-Star point guard with another.
The Boston Celtics have emerged as the front-runner to sign Charlotte guard Kemba Walker once free agency opens on Sunday, league sources tell ESPN. Walker, 29, has averaged more than 20 points per game in four straight seasons and is averaging 19.8 points per game for his career since joining the league in 2011 out of UConn, where he won a national championship.
Shams Charania: All-Star Kemba Walker and the Charlotte Hornets have sizable gaps and stalemate in talks so far, opening pathway for competitors in Boston, New York and Dallas, league sources tell @TheAthleticNBA @Stadium .
Brad Townsend: Current Kemba Walker destination likelihood order, per league source: 1. Boston 2. Charlotte 3. Dallas (definitely in the mix, with Lakers) Somewhere down the line: New York
Rick Bonnell: .@Kemba Walker said he’d be seeing @Charlotte Hornets owner Michael Jordan before free agency starts. Looks like they were together in Paris for this Jordan Brand appearance. And so was the Celtics’ Jayson Tatum. IMGhttps://www.instagram.com/p/BzA8uo_ggA5
Marc Stein: We can scratch “stealth.” Boston and Dallas are at the front of the line that will be trying to lure Kemba Walker away from Charlotte, league sources say
The Knicks also are hopeful for a free-agent meeting with 2019 Finals MVP Kawhi Leonard, according to a source, and have interest in New York City native Kemba Walker and New Jersey native Kyrie Irving.
Kupchak reinforced that everything else this off-season is secondary to re-signing Walker, who is eligible for a new contract of up to $221 million over the next five years. “You’re talking about a substantial contract that goes out many years. When that happens, it creates some financial inflexibility that you have to deal with,” Kupchak said. “We have to be mindful of a Kemba contract, should we be lucky enough to re-sign him. There could be limitations (on other roster moves), absolutely.”
Additionally, Kupchak’s comments cast serious doubt that the Hornets can afford to re-sign both Walker and shooting guard Jeremy Lamb. “I would not anticipate that is something we would look to do,” Kupchak said of being a tax-paying team next season. “There are ways to increase (the distance from the luxury-tax threshold). It’s important we address that as soon as possible. Everybody needs to get on and plan.”
Rod Boone: Mitch Kupchak said he doesn’t anticipate #Hornets going into the luxury tax threshold if they re-sign Kemba, which they still want to do. Suggested there are ways to avoid it. (Sounds like code words for stretching a contract or making a trade).
The Mavs, I’m told, are working to calculate how to bring Beverley to Dallas, even though he represents an option ranking well underneath a top priority like max free agent Kemba Walker.
The Lakers right now are operating on both fronts. They still hope to chase max players such as Kemba Walker, Jimmy Butler and Kawhi Leonard, sources say. They also have begun discussing players expected to fetch somewhere in that $10 million-plus range, sources say.
Because of salary cap rules, if the trade is consummated in late July, the Lakers would have the space to add another maximum contract. That cap space could be used on players like Kyrie Irving or Kemba Walker, all-star point guards who will be free agents. That scenario would require the Lakers to draft the fourth overall pick for the Pelicans, or whatever team has its rights by the time of the draft, then sign that player as quickly as possible. League rules do not allow a signed draft pick to be traded for 30 days, which would make July 20 the earliest date the trade could be consummated.
Rick Bonnell: FWIW: Someone who knows Kemba well has told me repeatedly he doubts Kemba would find living in Los Angeles particularly appealing. I’m sure this person has good cause to surmise that, but I still think the Lakers are now a huge threat to convince Kemba to sign there.
Rod Boone: Asked Kemba if he still wants to be in Charlotte. “I don’t know how many times I can say that. I’m not going to lie. I don’t know how many times I can say it. But if it doesn’t work out I’m definitely prepared to play somewhere else. But yes, I would love to be in Charlotte.”
Rick Bonnell: Short version of what @KembaWalker said: @hornets are his first priority, but that doesn’t make it automatic he re-signs in Charlotte. Plans to meet with other NBA teams before deciding. Walker said he’s open to taking less than the supermax from the Hornets.
Nick Carboni: I asked Kemba Walker if he would take less than the Super Max to help #Hornets team build around him: “Yeah I would take less. Sure why not. I would take less.”
ESPN’s Woj – “The big question facing the #Hornets right now is are they going to re-sign Kemba Walker in free agency or are they going to be willing to allow him to go out into the marketplace where teams like the #Mavs/#Knicks/#Lakers are going to be very interested in Walker.”
With free agency less than three weeks away, the situation in Charlotte certainly bears watching. If the Hornets offer Walker a max deal, it seems logical to assume that he stays there. Of course, only Walker — and Walker alone — knows what he wants to do this summer. And he probably won’t have a strong idea about where he wants to sign until he meets with the Hornets or other suitors in a few weeks. But some opposing execs monitoring Charlotte’s free agent situation believe, currently, that if Walker chose to sign somewhere outside of Charlotte, going to New York isn’t a likely outcome for the point guard, per SNY sources.
“I try to keep things pretty light, but in all reality it’s a pretty serious situation for all of us,” Zeller said. “I mean, our careers and a lot of the organization to be honest with you depends on what Kemba decides this summer, whether he stays or goes. I think it really depends on his choice. But our team and our future can go two very different ways depending on what he decides. So I was kind of trying to make light of a serious situation. But I think for Kemba, he’s been great. I’ve been fortunate to play with him for all six years of my career, and a lot of minutes on the court together, and he’s been great.”
“So I think he likes Charlotte. I think he’s a good fit here. But the reality of it is we haven’t been able to make deep runs in the playoffs. So hopefully that will still come in the future. But at the end of the day, Kemba has to do what’s best for him. And I’m going to support him, whatever decision he makes.”
The Hornets and Kemba Walker both have each other as top priorities entering July 1, league sources said. Walker confirmed to Jared Weiss of The Athletic that the Hornets remain his “first priority” during his tour of Tokyo as an NBA ambassador there during the NBA Finals. Walker made the All-NBA third team this year after another spectacular season, allowing him to sign a five-year, $221 million super maximum contract. There is doubt around the NBA that the Hornets will reach that high amount, but owner Michael Jordan’s loyalty has always been with Walker.
For Walker, the decision is easy. “Oh no question, Charlotte’s definitely my first priority,” he said. “That’s where I’ve been for eight years and that’s all I know. Not many people get a chance to play for one NBA team throughout their career. When I go on my Instagram, I see, ‘Kemba leave! Kemba get out of Charlotte!’ People don’t understand, when they say you need to go ‘here’ and win, that winning is not guaranteed anywhere.”
He’s heard the reports that teams like New York and Dallas may be lining up to make a max offer, and he’s heard even more speculation that a return to his hometown plays to his heart. But he cherishes how his career and relationship with his new home have flourished. “Charlotte is my home, man,” Walker said. “I’ve been there for eight years and it’s been the most amazing eight years of my life. My family, they love it. The fans love me. The organization has been great and gave me my opportunity.”
Walker is in the middle of his prime now. So is that fifth year vital to him? “I think so,” he said. “I think at my age, whoever is my age in this situation, I think the fifth year is always important to them. So yeah, it’s important for sure. But I don’t know, we gon’ see if we’re gonna work something out and figure it out. Hopefully, things work out, but it’s all about that god knows where I’m gonna go. He’s the only one who knows where I’m going right now, honestly. So I’m just going to let this thing play out.”
Steve Kyler: All things being equal — Not sure there will be much of a market for DeMarcus… as for Kemba. I know the Magic, Pacers, Knicks, and Lakers have an interest… Charlotte still wants him and can now Supermax him.
Tim Bontemps: The NBA has announced its All-NBA teams. By being named to one of the three teams, Damian Lillard is now eligible for four-year, $191 million extensions this summer, and Kemba Walker is eligible to sign a five-year, $221 million deal as a free agent July 1. No Beal or Thompson.
Rod Boone: It’s third-team Alll-NBA team honors for Kemba Walker. That means he’s eligible for the supermax contract, which in his case is five years, $221 million. Equates to a salary of $38.2 million per season. Now GM Mitch Kupchak has the financial parameters he must work with.
By being All-NBA, point guard Walker would become eligible for a “supermax” contract, worth as much as $221 million over the next five years. That would increase the potential advantage the Charlotte Hornets have to re-sign him in July. But it could also raise the cost of retaining him by more than $30 million. The three All-NBA teams include six guards. Five guards appear to be locks to make the cut, in voting by media who regularly cover the NBA: James Harden, Stephen Curry, Damian Lillard, Russell Westbrook and Kyrie Irving. That last spot probably comes down to a close call between Bradley Beal, Klay Thompson and Walker, who averaged a career-best 25.6 points and was an All-Star for the third consecutive season.
Albert Nahmad: Players eligible for “super-max” this summer if earn All-NBA honors: – Kemba Walker: 5/$221M (starting 2019-20) – Klay Thompson: 5/$221M (starting 2019-20) – Bradley Beal: $4/191M (starting 2021-22) – Damian Lillard: 4/$191M (5/$247M if signed next summer) (starting 2021-22)
It’s also worth noting here that some in the Knicks organization are high on fellow free agent point guard Kemba Walker, sources say. But that probably doesn’t matter if Durant tells the Knicks that he’ll sign with them, and that he wants to play with Irving.
Since Kemba is one of the top free agents on the market and it’s his first time experiencing what it’s like, I don’t think we will get an answer until after free agency opens at 12:01 a.m. ET on July 1. That’s when teams can officially begin negotiating with free agents and come to verbal agreements. Teams can officially sign free agents and complete trades on July 6 once the league’s moratorium period ends. But even when teams can really start throwing money around, I don’t think Kemba’s status is going to come to light until the first couple of dominoes fall (ie: Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving, Kawhi Leonard, etc.). Kemba is in that next tier just below those guys. It’s honestly all up to Kemba and his agent Jeff Schwartz. They will set the timeline. But the longer it drags out, the more concerned Hornets’ fans should be about his chances of returning.
One source close to Harris’ camp explained how Tobias likes his role in Philadelphia, but the idea of returning home is something he will likely consider this summer. Other names have been mentioned, such as Jimmy Butler, who put the Nets atop his list of destinations when demanding a trade out of Minnesota. Similar to Tobias, a source close to Kemba Walker said the star point guard is intrigued by the idea of coming back to play in his home state — including both the Knicks and Nets.
League sources say that the Mavericks intend to fling themselves into the chase for Khris Middleton and/or Kemba Walker with gusto in hopes that they have a shot at one of them.
Ask people in the NBA which teams might come after Walker, and the responses are what you’d expect: The Knicks, especially if Irving remains in Boston. The Lakers, who will be desperate to surround LeBron with talent and might be stuck choosing between second-tier stars like Walker, Jimmy Butler and DeMarcus Cousins. There are whispers around the NBA that the Mavericks are intrigued by Walker, but it’s hard to discern where that rumor arose and if it’s anything more than another game of NBA telephone.
Contradictory as it sounds, Walker being named All-NBA could be detrimental to the Hornets. “They’re fucked either way,” is how three (!) different NBA front-office people described the situation. Let Walker go, and, as one scout said, “They’d be like an expansion team.” Ink him to the supermax and Charlotte would be diving into dangerous waters. As great as Walker is, he’s proved that he’s not capable of carrying a team deep into the playoffs on his own. He’ll also turn 29 in May, bringing him right up to the age where players often begin declining. “It’d be like the John Wall deal,” one front-office person said. “They should have traded him last year, when his value was high. They could have just reset.”
The contract would also push the Hornets right up to the tax line, a threshold team owner Michael Jordan has always avoided crossing. In other words, signing Walker would force the Hornets to run the same group back next year. “They’d be saddling themselves up to mediocrity for years,” one of the front-office people said. The only path out of NBA purgatory would be Walker remaining healthy, promising prospect Miles Bridges continuing to develop, and Charlotte finding Walker a worthy No. 2 next summer, when the weighty contracts of Marvin Williams, Bismack Biyombo and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist ($45 million in total cap space) come off the books. “The surrounding pieces aren’t so bad,” another of the front-office people said. “They just need another guy in there so they can all slide down a role.”
Erik Horne: Presti on acquiring better shooters: “Always. We’ll look under every rock. We’re not going to get shooting out of our fives, as of now. Maybe we can push Steven into a development phase where he can do that.”
Charlotte Hornets guard Kemba Walker also has fans in the Knicks organization. Multiple executives doing their homework on the free agent class, though, fully expect Durant to sign with the Knicks and Irving to join him.
The Charlotte Hornets had a chance to swing the table and prove to Kemba Walker they’re capable of acquiring talent by trading for Marc Gasol. Yet when a potential deal slipped from their grip, the Hornets star was deflated to see he would no longer be getting help to chase a spot in the postseason. ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski detailed the incident in The Woj Pod: “I got the sense in talking to people, that trade deadline really deflated him,” Wojnarowski said of Walker. “When they were pretty close on a Marc Gasol deal, and it fell apart. It didn’t happen. He goes to Toronto. And he looks around and goes, “Come on, what are we trying to do here?”
Charlotte Hornets general manager Mitch Kupchak offered two absolutes Friday concerning Kemba Walker’s free-agency: that Walker is a “once-in-a-generation kind of player” and that “we’ll do everything we can to bring him back here.” … Sure, Walker wants to get paid. But lots of other NBA teams can do that, too. He wants proof the Hornets will surround him with enough talent to win sooner than later. That hasn’t happened in Walker’s eight seasons in Charlotte and there are three months left to demonstrate progress.
I asked Kupchak how he felt about Walker saying Thursday that winning will weigh heavily in his free-agency, and that he expects the Hornets are addressing that. Kupchak said he wants all the players — not just Walker — to make winning their imperative. “Kemba has been here eight years now; he has made the playoffs twice. That is not what he wants to do,” Kupchak replied. “Yeah, there is a sense of urgency. That’s my job.”
“I have no feeling right now, I don’t know,” Kemba Walker said of his impending decision in free agency this summer. “Honestly, I don’t know what to expect. I guess it’s a lot of different emotions bottled up into one. I’m not sure. I don’t know.”
Signing with another team could give him the opportunity to compete for the championship he so desperately craves. “I mean, obviously I do want to be competitive because I want to be able to play in the playoffs,” Walker said. “So I want to think that would have some influence” on my decision.
Seven months later, his intent sounded far less resolute regarding his upcoming free agency. “I’m not sure yet,” Walker said Wednesday night, when I asked if he’s still predisposed to staying with the franchise that drafted him back in 2011. “I don’t know. “I have a long time to even start thinking about that stuff. Me and my agent will get together. Me and my family, we’ll discuss that stuff when the time is right.”
In the meantime, Charlotte has won three straight – including yesterday’s big victory over the Pistons – to remain in the playoff race. Walker insists he’s focused on finishing this season strong, not setting up his next contract. “There’s no way I could play basketball thinking about those kind of things,” Walker said. “You know what I mean? Yeah, I just can’t. I just can’t go on the court thinking, ‘Oh, I’ve got to get 30 because I need to.’ I just can’t think about those kind of things. I mean, I see it, hear about it. But it’s nothing that comes to my attention too much.”
But rumors are already swirling about Walker leaving Charlotte. No clear destinations have emerged, though the Mavericks are reportedly interested. That opens the door for many fan bases to view landing Walker as realistic. Don’t rule out the Hornets, either. “This is the team that believed in me from day one,” Walker said. “So, of course. They’re always going to be on top of the list.”
Jordan knows this. That’s why he refused all offers this deadline and wasn’t interested in 2018 when the Hornets reportedly listened to offers. Jordan loves Walker as a person and player, league sources have repeatedly said, and that’s the primary reason Jordan wants to keep him. But he also knows that without Walker, the Hornets have nothing else.
Threats to sign Kemba Walker away from the Charlotte Hornets this summer? Place this team at the top of your list: The Dallas Mavericks. Two sources with knowledge of the Mavericks’ thinking expect Walker, the Hornets’ three-time All-Star point guard, to be that team’s top target when NBA free-agency begins July 1.
Walker hasn’t spoken at length about free-agency since late September, the day before Hornets training camp began in Chapel Hill. That day, Walker said he intended to re-sign with the Hornets. (Under salary-cap rules, there is no practical way for the Hornets to sign Walker to a new market-value contract until his current contract expires).
Odds Kemba stays in Charlotte? Sam Amick: @Eric R. At this point, based on scuttlebutt around the league but without direct clarity from his side, it feels like he’s more likely to leave than stay.
“It’s great for the city, great for the community,” Walker told USA TODAY Sports. “I’m excited. This city is excited. It’s about time we got an event like this here in Charlotte. “Charlotte means a lot to me. This city has embraced me – allowed me to be who I am, allowed me to grow as a man. I just love the city. This team drafted me, believed in me when I was young.”
Walker will hit unrestricted free agency for the first time. “I don’t know how it goes,” he said. “Me and my agent will sit down and get it right.” It appears he has plans to stay. He recently bought land on which to build a home outside of Charlotte. “I feel like it’s a normal life for me,” Walker said. “I’m never overwhelmed here whenever I do want to get out of the house – walk around, walk around the mall, be me. That’s what I love the most.”
With that in mind, Johnson himself was not having it when he was asked about Kemba Walker by a reporter at an event leading up to NBA All-Star Weekend (via Carolina Blitz): Reporter: I have a question I have to ask you about Kemba Walker– Magic: “You know I can’t answer any questions about no players, because every time I do, I get fined, but anybody else do it, they don’t get fined. So I’m gonna stay away from that one.”
Rick Bonnell: Per @Shams Charania the Mavs inquired with the Hornets about Kemba and were told no interest in moving him. Further evidence the intent is to ride this out to July and re-sign him.
Walker prefers it this way. On the court, his game is the embodiment of the New York City product he is, full of pull-ups, hesitations, crossovers and dimes. Off the court, he would rather be as he is now, in a familiar setting and out of the spotlight. “I love it,” he said of Charlotte during a conversation the previous week before repeating himself for emphasis. “I love it. It’s perfect for me. The pace of the city is pretty slow, which I love. It’s not fast-paced like New York. … I’m able to just live pretty much a normal life. I’m able to go out and eat and not really be bothered. Go to the mall and walk around, not really be bothered. That’s what I like, personally. That’s the kind of life I like to live.”
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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.