Rumor Roundup: Cavs, Lopez, Raptors
As usual, lots of news, views and moves as the NBA trading deadline looms. Let's get right to it:
Per ESPN: "Cavaliers guard J.R. Smith, who is on target for a mid-March return, could take the court in as soon as three weeks in his comeback from a right thumb fracture, league sources told ESPN." (Full report.)
Per ESPN: "A team source told ESPN that Smith will have his right thumb reimaged during the All-Star break, and that could adjust his timeline. Asked to characterize Smith's rehab process so far, the source said, 'great.'" (Full report.)
Per Amico Hoops: "Multiple outlets reported Monday that Cavaliers forward Kevin Love is seeking a second opinion on his knee injury, after being ruled out for at least the next game in Minnesota." (Full report.)
Per the Akron Beacon Journal: "If he missed only three games, that would take him through the All-Star break and have him ready to return when the Cavs get back on the floor next week. That might be a best-case scenario at this point." (Full report.)
Per ESPN: "A Cavs source told ESPN that Derrick Williams has done enough already to warrant a second 10-day contract when his current 10-day contract expires during the All-Star break."
Per ESPN: "Iman Shumpert, out the last three games with a sprained left ankle, is questionable for the Cavs game Tuesday. He will go through shootaround in Minnesota on Tuesday and make his decision on whether to play afterward. 'I mean, today was my first time really getting to run around on it so we'll see how it feels tomorrow and go from there,' Shumpert said after practice Monday."
Per Amico Hoops: "In the end, Chris Andersen served a big purpose for the Cavaliers. That’s because they were able to turn the injured Andersen into a roster spot, and if you really believe it, a second-round draft pick, in a trade with the Charlotte Hornets." (Full report.)
">Amico Hoops: "LeBron James has been named Eastern Conference Player of the Week for the fourth time this season, the league announced Monday." (Cavs’ James claims East award for 57th time
">Full report.) Per Cavs’ James claims East award for 57th time
">Amico Hoops: "This marks the 57th time the Cavaliers star has won the award — an NBA record for either conference." (Cavs’ James claims East award for 57th time
Per Amico Hoops: "Dwyane Wade sat down with Adrian Wojnarowski of the Vertical to discuss a wide range of topics about his life on and off the court." (Full report.)
Per Amico Hoops: "There are plenty of gems in the interview and it’s worth listening to fully, but one nugget that fans around Cleveland might find interesting involves the possible future of Wade, James, Carmelo Anthony, and Chris Paul playing together — otherwise known as the 'banana boat crew.'" (Full report.)
Per Amico Hoops: "It’s something that you would like,” Wade told Wojnarowski. "It’s your best friends. Who wouldn’t want to play with their best friends? Now, what it takes to make that happen is a total different story, but I don’t think (any) of us has shut the door on it." (Full report.)
Free agent center Larry Sanders is meeting with the Lakers, per Spectrum SportsNet.
Per Basketball Insiders: "The New Orleans Pelicans and Brooklyn Nets have discussed a trade of Tyreke Evans, Langston Galloway, Tim Frazier and a 2018 protected first-round pick for Brook Lopez, league sources told Basketball Insiders." (Full report.)
">Amico Hoops: "According to a report from Basketball Insiders, the Bulls areexploring the trade in search of a first-round draft pick, and are using forward Doug McDermott and center Robin Lopez as trade bait." (Report: Bulls dangling McDermott, Lopez
">Amico Hoops: "Also per the report: 'Chicago remains interested in acquiring Philadelphia 76ers center Jahlil Okafor. It’s unclear at this time if exploring the trade market for a first-round pick in exchange for either Lopez or McDermott is related to the Okafor trade talks.'" (Report: Bulls dangling McDermott, Lopez
Per Yahoo Sports: "The Bulls’ most valuable asset, besides Jimmy Butler, is Taj Gibson’s expiring contract. The durable Gibson has missed only two games this year and can either start or come off the bench." (Full report.)
Per Yahoo Sports: "Derrick Rose, Brandon Jennings, Courtney Lee and Joakim Noah would seem to have value on paper, but Rose and Jennings have expiring contracts and Lee and Noah have long-term deals. That makes teams hesitant of giving up valuable assets." (Full report.)
Per the New York Daily News: "Charles Oakley hasn’t ruled out settling his feud with James Dolan but he wants more time to process everything that transpired over the past tumultuous week." (Full report.)
Per the New York Daily News: "In a brief interview with the Daily News Monday, Oakley revealed that an immediate resolution would be difficult only because 'some of the things that were said about me hurt.'" (Full report.)
Per the New York Daily News: "Oakley met with Dolan and NBA Commissioner Adam Silver on Monday at the league’s Manhattan headquarters. Charlotte Hornets owner Michael Jordan joined the meeting via conference call." (Full report.)
Per the Atlanta Journal Constitution: “He’s not going anywhere,” said Hawks coach Mike Budenholzer, who also serves as president of basketball operations, to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution on Monday. “You can write that.” (Full report.)
Per Hoops Rumors: "If Los Angeles’ 2017 draft pick ends up outside the top-3, Philadelphia will receive it and the team’s 2019 first round pick will go to Orlando. If the Lakers do not convey their 2017 first-rounder to the Sixers, they will send two second-rounders to the Magic instead of that 2019 first-rounder." (Full report.)
Per the Orange County Register: "On the court, they keep reestablishing what is meant by the term 'worst season ever.' Off the floor, there remains great uncertainty about the future of the team’s leadership, great uncertainty that Johnson’s presence only muddies more." (Full report.)
Per Amico Hoops: "For starters, the Hornets traded a future (top-55 protected) draft pick to the Cleveland Cavaliers for the rights to center Chris Andersen. But the Birdman will never soar in Charlotte, as the Hornets intend to immediately waive him for financial reasons." (Full report.)
Per Sports Business Daily: "Wasserman is representing Golden State Warriors guard Klay Thompson both on and off the court. Greg Lawrence is Thompson’s lead agent at Wasserman. He was formerly represented by BDA Sports." (Full report.)
The Trail Blazers have recalled forward Jake Layman and guard Tim Quarterman from the Windy City Bulls of the D-League, per the team.
The Magic have recalled center Stephen Zimmerman from the Erie BayHawks of the D-League, per the team.
The Nets have recalled power forward Chris McCullough from the Long Island Nets of the D-League, per the team.
Per the Akron Beacon Journal: "Coach Tyronn Lue freely admits he’s just experimenting right now. He used Derrick Williams to guard the point guard position in Thursday’s loss at the Oklahoma City Thunder, then went even further and used Williams in sort of a point guard role against the Nuggets." (Full report.)
Per the Akron Beacon Journal: "While the rest of the league is infatuated with smaller lineups, Lue tried a jumbo package to start the second quarter when he sent out Williams and James with Richard Jefferson, Kyle Korver and Channing Frye. Everyone on the floor was at least 6-foot-7. The only problem was they didn’t have a point guard." (Full report.)
Per Cleveland.com: "Probably the most swelling I've ever had on anything besides ACL and getting my knee drained," Shumpert told cleveland.com, before the Cavs beat Denver 125-109 on Saturday at The Q. It was Shumpert's third consecutive missed game. "When I saw it swell up like that, it wasn't a pretty situation. But the swelling went down pretty fast. So I've been gettin ready all day and all night, make sure that swelling gets out." (Full report.)
Knicks star Carmelo Anthony indicated to ESPN he'd prefer to a break over potentially filling in as a replacement for Love on the East All-Star squad. "I got plans," he told the website. "If they'd call me I'd consider it. But I would love to utilize this break."
Per Variety: "Cavaliers superstar Kyrie Irving is hoping for a big screen slam dunk. Sources tell Varietythat Temple Hill Entertainment has acquired the feature film rights to Irving’s 'Uncle Drew' Pepsi commercials. 'Skiptrace' scribe Jay Longino is set to write the script and Irving is attached to reprise the role of Drew." (Full report.)
Per ESPN: "There's a growing sense around the league that Serge Ibaka could be on the move again as the league's Feb. 23 trade deadline draws near." (Full report.)
Per ESPN: "Sources say Toronto and Miami are among the Eastern Conference teams that have expressed interest in Ibaka this month. More than one rival club has expressed the belief that Orlando will use the next 10 days before the deadline to keep fielding offers and then, ultimately, choose the best available package for Ibaka on Feb. 23 and make the move." (Full report.)
Per ESPN: "Skepticism about Atlanta's recent insistence that Paul Millsap is completely off the market has been fairly rampant. The Hawks, however, are adamant that Millsap is staying put in the wake of the Kyle Korver-to-Cleveland deal in early January ... whether rival teams believe them or not." (Full report.)
Per ESPN: "Now that the Nurkic trade we've been anticipating for weeks has materialized at last, league sources say Danilo Gallinari is a prime Nugget to watch between now and the deadline." (Full report.)
Per ESPN: "The Nets, as ESPN.com reported in late December, continue to demand two first-round draft picks if they are to part with center Brook Lopez before the deadline." (Full report.)
Per Amico Hoops: "Another Plumlee is reportedly on the move. This time it’s Mason Plumlee, who has been traded from Portland to Denver, Yahoo Sports reported Sunday." (Full report.)
Per Amico Hoops: "As Yahoo noted, the trade of Plumlee gives the Blazers three first-round picks in the June draft." (Full report.)
Per The Denver Post: "A big draw in the deal for the Nuggets was being able to retain Plumlee's restricted free-agent rights."
Per the Philadelphia Inquirer: "It appears that the Nuggets talks with 76ers in regards to possible acquiring Jahlil Okafor have stalled." (Full report.)
Per Sports Illustrated: "A willing and able passer who plays with energy and represents a vertical threat with his finishing ability, Plumlee hasn’t paired his intriguing offense with capable defense." (Full report.)
Per Sports Illustrated: "Jusuf Nurkic isn’t the answer. The 22-year-old Bosnian seven-footer might be an Internet cult hero due to his fearsome physical presence, but he hasn’t been a positive difference-maker in his two-plus seasons in Denver." (Full report.)
Per ESPN: "That miniature exchange exemplified Durant’s frustration in playing alongside Westbrook for those eight years with the Thunder. It was always, 'I’m coming. I’m coming.' Meanwhile, the team wasn’t going anywhere." (Full report.)
Per the Oklahoman: "ABC’s broadcast of the Warriors’ 130-114 win against the Thunder on Saturday did a 4.1 metered-market rating, the highest-rated regular-season non-Christmas NBA game on any network since 2013, according to ESPN." (Full report.)
Per ESPN: "Rick Carlisle considered it an easy decision to plug Deron Williams back in the starting lineup despite sudden rookie sensation Yogi Ferrell's success. 'Because D-Will is a better player,' Carlisle said after Williams returned from an eight-game absence due to a toe injury." (Full report.)
Per the Orlando Sentinel: "Orlando Magic CEO Alex Martins said he will follow standard team procedure when he and the DeVos family assess the job performance of embattled general manager Rob Hennigan." (Full report.)
Per the Orlando Sentinel: "In April 2012, when he was asked about the status of coach Stan Van Gundy and general manager Otis Smith, Martins said everyone within the team hierarchy — including himself, front-office personnel and coaches — is evaluated after each season. The following month, the Magic fired Van Gundy and Smith." (Full report.)
Timberwolves guard Zach LaVine will undergo season-ending surgery on his torn ACL on Tuesday, per the team.
The Spurs have signed center Joel Anthony for the remainder of the season following the expiration of a second 10-day contract, per Yahoo Sports.
The LA D-Fenders of the D-League have have obtained former NBA big man DeJuan Blair from the Texas Legends for a future draft pick, per D-League Digest.
The Raptors have recalled have recalled forward Bruno Caboclo, forward Jared Sullinger and guard Fred VanVleet from Raptors 905 of the D-League, per the team.
The Pacers have assigned forward Rakeem Christmas to the Fort Wayne Mad Ants of the D-League, per the team.
Former D-League guard Dion Dixon (Cincinnati) has agreed to a contract with GS Kymis of Greece, per Amico Hoops.