Lots of rumors, news, moves and views from around pro hoops. Here's the latest:
Per NEO Sports Insiders: "According to NBA reporter Mitch Lawrence of Forbes.com, the Cavaliers are interested in adding either Denver's Jameer Nelson, Chicago's Rajon Rondo, or Dallas' Deron Williams to serve as Kyrie Irving’s backup." (Full report.)
The Cavs have taken part in repeated discussions centered on Nelson, and he would appear to be the primary target of the three mentioned by Forbes, per Amico: It’s time for Cavs to pull it together
">Amico Hoops sources.
Per the Minneapolis Star Tribune: "Kyrie Irving is clearly the starer, but the Cavaliers could absolutely use a player like Ricky Rubio. That said, it’s hard to imagine Cleveland having anything of value to offer in return. All of their high-salary players are key members of their rotation, and draft picks they could deal would be late in the first round." (Full report.)
Per the Minneapolis Star Tribune: "But if there is a three-way trade to be made involving another team just looking to clear some cap space, Cleveland could be an intriguing dark horse." (Full report.)
Per the Akron Beacon Journal: "After his group availability Monday night, LeBron James spoke candidly on the record with three traveling beat writers who follow the Cavs on the road, including the Beacon Journal." (Full report.)
Per the Akron Beacon Journal: "James has said for weeks the Cavs need more playmakers, guys who can dribble, pass and shoot. The Golden State Warriors have about six or seven who can do it. The Cavs essentially have two: James and Kyrie Irving." (Full report.)
Per the Akron Beacon Journal: "The Cavs have the league’s highest payroll, but they’re without a reliable backup point guard. James said it’s not fair to expect DeAndre Liggins and Kay Felder, two inexperienced guards, to have to contribute in a postseason series, which is why he is looking for more help." (Full report.)
Per ESPN: "After sleeping on it, James sent this tweet (and this one) on Tuesday that managed to back general manager David Griffin and apply pressure at the same time. This is what James does, and he executes it perfectly." (Full report.)
Per Cleveland.com: "Often a playoff disappointment in the past, Williams decided to get the letdown over with before the season even started. He abruptly retired, leaving the Cavs' roster as thin as their interior defense against the Pelicans' Terrence Jones. It was a great disservice to an organization that got him a championship ring." (Full report.)
Per ESPN: "Denver is waiving Mo Williams again but ESPN sources say Philly's plan is to pass on claiming him a second time to stick with Chasson Randle."
Per ESPN: "Dwyane Wade, who signed a two-year deal with the Bulls last summer for $47 million, which included a player option, admitted that the Bulls' mediocrity would impact his decision to pick up the option or not. He told ESPN.com last week that Jimmy Butler's future would also play a major part in his decision." (Full report.)
Per the New York Daily News: "The smart play is for the Knicks, who own their first-round pick in what appears to be a deep and talented draft, is to trade off one or two veterans, turn to their young players and start scouting college games." (Full report.)
Per the New York Daily News: "In a perfect world, Carmelo Anthony would be a great sixth man for the Cavs, but at his cap number – approximately $27 million when you throw in his trade kicker – it’s nearly impossible for that trade to happen. Plus, Cleveland is thinking more along the lines of a backup point guard and/or a backup big man." (Full report.)
Per the New York Daily News: "Toronto doesn’t have much to offer, while Doc Rivers would love to add Carmelo to his win-now team. According to a source, the Clippers are unwilling trade anyone of significance." (Full report.)
Per ESPN: "Teams that are in need of PG assistance, Will Bynum is a name that frequently pops up. The veteran is playing for D-League's Windy City Bulls."
The Nuggets have agreed to a 10-day contract with free agent power forward Johnny O'Bryant, per The Denver Post.
Per the New York Post: Nets GM Sean Marks insists the latest setback with Jeremy Lin won't change the grand plan, or make Marks more apt to move Brook Lopez before the trading deadline.
Magic GM Rob Hennigan, via the Orlando Sentinel: "We have to go into the trade deadline looking to improve the team by any means necessary. So we’re not in a position with our team right now to not explore and listen to any ideas or concepts that come our way or that we inquire about. So the goal’s to improve the team any way we can." (Full report.)
The Nuggets have claimed Mo Williams off waivers, per ESPN. Williams is expected to be immediately waived.
Per the Atlanta Journal-Constitution: "The Hawks will replace the Magic in operating the Erie (Pa.) BayHawks beginning with the 2017-18 season. The deal would not interfere with the timeline for the Hawks’ planned franchise in College Park that will begin operating for the 2019-20 season." (Full report.)
Per Grizzlies.com: "The Grizzlies have acquired an expansion NBA-Development League franchise they will own and operate in the Mid-South, multiple league sources confirmed Monday. The yet-to-be-named affiliate is scheduled to launch for the 2017-18 season and will play its 24-game home schedule at the Landers Center in Southaven, Mississippi." (Full report.)
Per NBA.com: "An announcement on expansion could come within weeks, before the NBA All-Star game Feb. 19 in New Orleans. Two of the new operations are close to being finalized to serve as direct affiliates for NBA franchises, with the possibility of a third addition that would bring the D-League to 25 teams." (Full report.)
Former D-League forward Michael Cobbins (Oklahoma State) has agreed to a contract with Wurzburg of Germany, per Amico Hoops.
Former D-League forward Greg Mays (Green Bay) has agreed to a deal with Rotterdam of Holland, per Amico Hoops.
Former Xavier forward Jalen Reynolds has agreed to a contract with Italian club Grissin Bon Reggio Emilia, per Amico Hoops.