• With the Wizards reportedly putting together a five-year, $80 million extension for John Wall, Tom Ziller of SB Nation wonders about the value of locking up the point guard preemptively:
But with Wall and a max deal, there's not a whole lot of timing upside. If you fail to ink him now, there's no risk he'd be more expensive next summer as a restricted free agent: the max is the max. The reason you lock up guys like [Kevin] Durant as early as possible is because there's almost nothing that can happen to stop them from getting a max eventually anyway, so you get it done in order to work on other deals and use it as a recruitment tool. If Wall has a rough season and doesn't already have an extension in place, you could see him getting less than the max next summer.
So in this case, I think the opposite of what may be the conventional wisdom. I do think Wall is worth a max contract right now, but I'm not sure there's a compelling reason for the Wizards to make it happen as it's been reported. If you can work in a team option or assign some of the money to a reasonable incentive (like an All-Star berth or playoff series victory), maybe there's the impetus to do it now. I just don't see it as things stand. There's little risk and a tangible potential benefit in waiting for 2014.
• Dennis Rodman recently showed some love to a blogger who three years ago laid out a detailed, analytical case for the Worm's dominance as a rebounder. Alright, then.
The rest of the West spent the last month trying to catch up to the Thunder by making big moves and spending money on free agents. The Rockets got Dwight Howard, the Warriors got Andre Iguodala, the Clippers got J.J. Redick. All the meanwhile the Thunder still possess maybe the two best players in the entire conference on their own team.
The feeling is, though, that the Thunder have slipped behind. And maybe they have. They’re still trying to lock down Mike Miller and while they may or may not happen, a player like Miller will only serve to complement the team. It’s like him, or Dorell Wright, or Carlos Delfino are the missing pieces standing between the Thunder and a championship. I think what’s frustrated some is the appearance that the Thunder aren’t doing anything while other teams are doing something. As if the Thunder’s roster is some sort of misshapen mess with holes and problems all over it.
Again, 60 wins, margin of victory, Russell Westbrook. Et cetera, et cetera.
• In 10 years' time, Madison Square Garden will need to be somewhere else -- anywhere but Penn Plaza -- sayeth the New York City Council.
• Dallas has spent a fair bit of money this summer and filled out its roster with quality NBA players, but how many of those new pieces register as redeemable, tradeable assets?
• The NBA Summer League is a valuable opportunity for players on the fringes of league inclusion. But it's also worthy for those looking to earn a bigger paycheck by playing overseas. The event is well-stocked with international scouts, and as is noted here by Keith Schlosser of Ridiculous Upside, many prospects embrace the event for its potential to influence their non-NBA earning potential.
• Loved this bit from Detroit's Andre Drummond, who detailed his approach to USA Basketball's minicamp to Keith Langlois of Pistons.com (via Piston Powered):
“Just go out there and try to take spots – try to take somebody’s spot is really what it boils down to,” Drummond said. “I’m not out there for fun. I’m out there for business, so come out there to play as hard as I can. Hopefully, I get noticed and will be on the team. That’s my goal.”