Storyline: Timofey Mozgov Free Agency

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Khimki Moscow Region is in negotiations to sign Timofey Mozgov, as Artem Komarov reported and Eurohoops confirms. The 32-year-old Russian center didn’t play any games this past season with the Orlando Magic – who waived him -due to a knee injury. His last playing stretch was the 31 games with the Nets in the 2017-18 season when he averaged 4.2 points and 3.2 rebounds on a bit over 11 minutes of playtime.

The Los Angeles Lakers have signed center Timofey Mozgov, it was announced today by General Manager Mitch Kupchak. Per team policy, terms of the deal were not released. “Timofey is a player who has shown the ability to change the game at the defensive end, and fills an area of need for us at the center position,” said Kupchak. “We are very pleased to add him to our team.”

Ian Begley: The Knicks are interested in Joakim Noah, but he isn’t the only big man on their radar. Another center some in the Knicks organization are high on is Timofey Mozgov, per league sources. The interest between Noah and the Knicks is strong and mutual. But Mozgov, an ex-Knick, provides an interesting alternative. With Carmelo Anthony, Derrick Rose and Kristaps Porzingis on the roster, the Knicks probably won’t need a high-scoring center. Mozgov doesn’t need touches and would provide mobile rim protection and rebounding. He also compares favorably to Noah in some categories (age: Mozgov is 29, Noah is 31; recent health: Noah was limited to 29 games last season due to a left shoulder injury).

Mozgov, 29, will be an unrestricted free agent in the summer and is expected to receive strong interest and a lucrative long-term deal. The Cavs’ plan is to attempt to re-sign him, but a return could be less attractive for Mozgov if his reduced role continues. Cleveland, however, does own his Bird Rights, and he is eligible for a five-year extension with the franchise. The Cavaliers have $103 million committed in salary next season. If the franchise were to sign Mozgov to a $10 million annual deal – and his value could be more on the market – it would likely cost the Cavaliers over $26 million in salary and luxury tax.

He no longer has any discernible weaknesses, though he is still searching for consistency. Mozgov has always had good hands, good speed, impressive athleticism and great timing. For him, now, it’s just a matter of repetition and opportunity—not the dollars. “[My free agency] doesn’t change anything for me right now because whatever I do, I gotta do with my heart,” Mozgov said. “What I did last season, I gotta do this season, too. If you want to be a good player, there should be nothing changing. You’ve just gotta work hard.”
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July 18, 2019 | 3:25 am EDT Update
Oklahoma City has been working with Paul and his representatives on finding a trade, but nothing is materializing so deep into summer free agency, sources said. Both sides believe there are benefits to Paul, 34, playing out the season with the Thunder. For now, there’s a belief that there could be more success exploring trade scenarios again after Dec. 15 — or even the completion of the 2019-20 season, league sources said.
4 hours ago via ESPN
Has your play in the BIG3 built any momentum toward an NBA return? Is getting back to the NBA even a goal of yours? Joe Johnson: Yes, I’d love to get back and play in the NBA. It’s not my ultimate goal, it wasn’t my goal getting into the BIG3. But if the opportunity presents itself, I would take upon the challenge. I would love to. But, I got a job to do, and my agent has a job to do. I’m not sure about the momentum or how it’s going, but I just focus on what I can do and what I can control.
Can you clarify for me why there aren’t any tampering charges toward Kawhi or the team he signed with? — @Jay_Since82 from Twitter League officials generally won’t open a tampering investigation until there is formal complaint by at least one team — accompanied by some worthy evidence. The Toronto Raptors have not taken such a step. Nor is there any indication that an official complaint is looming from one of the league’s other 28 teams that did not land Kawhi Leonard. It would be a significant step for the Raptors or any other aggrieved team to push for an actual probe.