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Josh Powell Waived By Rockets

Veteran forward Josh Powell has been waived by the Houston Rockets, a league source told RealGM.

Powell had a non-guaranteed contract for 2014-15 as part of the multi-year deal he signed late last season. Despite the likelihood of his release, Powell entered training camp as one of the Rockets’ locker room voices, a close friend of Dwight Howard who trained with the All-Star center in Atlanta throughout the offseason.

Powell appeared in one game a season ago, scoring five points, grabbing four rebounds and recording one blocked shot.

In parts of seven NBA seasons with Dallas, Indiana, Golden State, both Los Angeles teams and Houston, Powell has averaged 3.9 points and 2.5 rebounds. The 6-foot-9 big man served as a contributing role player in the Lakers’ back-to-back championships in 2009 and 2010.

Via Shams Charania/RealGM

Rockets Sign Geron Johnson, Release Akil Mitchell

The Houston Rockets have signed Geron Johnson and requested waivers on Akil Mitchell.

Johnson (6-3, 203, Memphis), appeared in 67 contests at Memphis University holding career averages of 9.6 points, 4.8 rebounds and 3.5 assists per game in 28.3 minutes.

Mitchell (6-9, 230, Virginia), appeared in 133 contests and held career averages of 6.9 points, 6.0 rebounds and 1.1 assists as a Virginia Cavalier.

Via RealGM Staff Report

13 Teams Vote Against Lottery Reform, Current System Stays In Place

Thirteen teams voted against changes to the NBA draft lottery system, voting down the measure during Wednesday's Board of Governors meeting.

The Philadelphia 76ers and Oklahoma City were the two teams that led the charge against the system.

The Chicago Bulls and Washington Wizards were two of the bigger market teams that voted against the reform, while the Sacramento Kings voted for it.

The Phoenix Suns, New Orleans Pelicans, Detroit Pistons, Miami Heat, Milwaukee Bucks, San Antonio Spurs, Utah Jazz, Atlanta Hawks and Charlotte Hornets also voted against it.

"Several teams started to wonder about unintended consequences and voted no to be able to do further study," said one owner.

Via Adrian Wojnarowski/Yahoo! Sports

Michael Carter-Williams Targets Return From Shoulder Injury On Nov. 13

Michael Carter-Williams and the Philadelphia 76ers have a target return date of Nov. 13 against the Dallas Mavericks, according to a source.

Carter-Williams has been out since May after surgery on his right shoulder.

Carter-Williams averaged 16.7 points, 6.3 assists and 6.2 rebounds for the 76ers team that finished with the second-worst record in the NBA last season.

While Carter-Williams is optimistic about returning in Dallas on Nov. 13, Sam Hinkie and the 76ers could hold him out.

Via Jeff Goodman/ESPN

Noah's Surgically Repaired Left Knee Has 'Ways To Go'

Joakim Noah still is having issues with his surgically repaired left knee.

“I still have a ways to go," said Noah.

Noah was asked what exactly felt different compared to last season.

“It’s fine. It’s a work in progress. It’s getting better. I’m happy with where it’s at. Let me live, man. Jeez.’’

The Sun-Times reported on Tuesday night that despite having what was considered “minor’’ surgery on the knee in May, a source in the Noah camp said that, “Jo’s knee is going to be an issue all season long.’’

Via Joe Cowley/Chicago Sun-Times

T.J. Warren Out Indefinitely With Bone Crack In Thumb

T.J. Warren has sustained a small crack in a bone in his left thumb and will be treated with a splint and rest, the Phoenix Suns announced on Thursday.

There is no timetable for Warren's return.

Warren, a rookie from North Carolina State, was selected by the Suns with the 14th overall pick in the 2014 NBA Draft. He has averaged 5.0 points and 12.2 minutes in five preseason appearances.

Via RealGM Staff Report

Thunder Exercise Rookie Options On Adams, Roberson, Jones, Lamb

The Oklahoma City Thunder exercised their third-year options on Steven Adams and Andre Roberson in addition to its fourth-year options on Perry Jones and Jeremy Lamb, the team announced Wednesday.

During his rookie season with Oklahoma City, Adams appeared in 81 games (20 starts) and averaged 3.3 points, 4.1 rebounds (ninth among NBA Rookies) and 14.8 minutes while being named to the NBA All-Rookie Second Team.

In one season with the Thunder, Roberson appeared in 40 games (16 starts) and averaged 1.9 points and 2.4 rebounds in 10.0 minutes per game.

Over two seasons with Oklahoma City, Jones has appeared in 100 games (eight starts) and averaged 3.0 points and 1.8 rebounds in 10.4 minutes per game.

In two seasons with the Thunder, Lamb has appeared in 101 games and averaged 7.3 points, 2.0 rebounds and 1.2 assists in 16.7 minutes per game.

Via RealGM Staff Report

Nuggets Waive Jerrelle Benimon, Marcus Williams

The Denver Nuggets have waived forward Jerrelle Benimon and forward Marcus Williams.

Benimon appeared in six preseason games for the Nuggets, averaging 2.0 points and 2.7 rebounds in 8.1 minutes per game. He also appeared in three games for the Nuggets Summer League team in Las Vegas.

Williams appeared in six preseason games with Denver, averaging 3.3 points and 2.0 rebounds in 9.0 minutes per game. Williams was drafted by San Antonio with the 33rd pick of the 2007 NBA Draft.

Via RealGM Staff Report

GMs Predict Spurs' Title, LeBron For MVP, Jabari For ROY

The NBA has released its annual survery of general managers with the San Antonio Spurs receiving 46.2 percent of the votes for which team will win the 2015 Finals.

The Cleveland Cavaliers came in second with 15.4 percent, followed by the Chicago Bulls, Los Angeles Clippers and Oklahoma City tied for third at 11.5 percent. The Golden State Warriors received 3.8 percent of the vote.

LeBron James is the expected winner of MVP with 67.9 percent, followed by Kevin Durant at 21.4 percent. 

James is also the player most GMs would choose to build a franchise around with 50 percent of the vote, though that is down from 89.7 percent last season. Anthony Davis and Kevin Durant each received 25 percent of the vote.

Jabari Parker is a heavy favorite to win Rookie of the Year with 75 percent of the vote, followed by Andrew Wiggins at 17.9 percent.

Gregg Popovich is considered the best head coach in the NBA with 92.9 percent of the vote.

Via John Schuhmann/NBA.com

Jackson: Carmelo Is Knicks' Only 'Certified All-Star', Bargnani Will Thrive In Triangle

Phil Jackson candidly spoke with Charley Rosen about the entire New York Knicks' roster.

"Carmelo Anthony is obviously the team's only certified All-Star," said Jackson. "It's also no secret that Melo has to keep the ball moving, but he's committed to doing this. Passing has never been a great strength of his, but in the triangle he'll be able to have check-off reads like a quarterback looking for his first-option receiver, then his second and then his third. There'll be plenty of iso opportunities for Melo, and in the triangle it'll be very difficult for defenses to double-team him. It won't be like last season where he had to take clutch shots with a gang of defenders in his face. Also look for Melo to get a bunch of post-up looks."

Jackson is optimisic that Andrea Bargnani can have a productive season.

"If Andrea Bargnani's initial season in New York was a disappointment, I believe he'll thrive in the triangle. The 3-point shot is a bit out of his range, but from 20 feet and in, Andrea is a deadly shooter. And those are the kinds of shots that the offense will generate for him. Still, there are two aspects of his offense that he has to work on. Because he only approaches the rim in straight lines, he needs to develop some kind of change-of-direction move with the ball -- perhaps a crossover dribble. Also, he's a finger-roller, not a dunker. Could he have small hands? Or does he just need to be more aggressive?

"Bargnani's defense likewise needs improvement. With his long arms, he can be an effective shot-blocker, but he's usually too reactive on defense. In the past, Andrea has been slow getting back in transition defense, and once there he's been unsure of what his rotation responsibilities have been. And like Amar'e, Andrea has to see which of the frontcourt positions suits him best."

Via Charley Rosen/ESPN

Jazz Waive Dahntay Jones, Jack Cooley

Following the moves, Utahís roster now stands at 15 players.

Spurs Waive Bryce Cotton, Josh Davis

San Antonioís roster now stands at 16 after waiving Bryce Cotton and Josh Davis.

Love: My Decision Was About Wanting To Win

Kevin Love wrote a first-person essay called "How I Spent My Summer Vacation", which details his trade from the Timberwolves to the Cavaliers.

Nets Waive Willie Reed

Willie Reed posted averages of 4.0 points and 4.0 rebounds in two preseason contests.

Kevin Love Acknowledges He'll Need To Make Big Adjustments With Cavs

Kevin Love will play a different role with the Cavaliers than he has throughout his entire basketball career, using his size and shooting ability to stretch the floor.

Nuggets Releasing Quincy Miller

The Nuggets informed Quincy Miller of the organizationís plan to waive the forward, a source with knowledge told RealGM on Tuesday night.

Nikola Vucevic, Magic Agree Upon Four-Year, $54M Extension

RealGM's Shams Charania reports that Nikola Vucevic's deal is fully guaranteed with no option seasons.

Jimmy Butler Out With Sprained Ligaments In Thumb

Jimmy Butler will not practice this week and will not play in the Bulls' final preseason game against the Timberwolves.

Thunder, Bucks Join 76ers In Opposing Lottery Reform

Sam Presti has attempted to warn other small-market executives that changing the system is a risky proposition for their franchises.

Mavs Release Eric Griffin, Yuki Togashi

The Mavericks roster now stands at 18 players.

Kevin Durant Hopes For December Return, Won't Rush Recovery

Kevin Durant is expected to miss up to eight weeks and said he will not speed up his recovery timetable.

Dexter Pittman, Jarell Eddie Waived By Hawks

Both Dexter Pittman and Jarell Eddie were training camp invitations.

76ers, Knicks, Lakers, Celtics Each Have Only One Player In ESPN's Top-100

Michael Carter-Williams, Carmelo Anthony, Kobe Bryant and Rajon Rondo represent their respective teams in the top-100.

LeBron: We're Not A Big Three, We're A Big Fifteen

The Cavaliers will need significant contributions this season from the likes of Anderson Varejao, Shawn Marion, Dion Waiters, Mike Miller and Tristan Thompson.

Wizards May Sign John Lucas III

John Lucas III would give the Wizards veteran depth in the backcourt.

Paul George Shoots Jumpers At Pacers' Practice

Paul George said recently that he plans to play at some point during this NBA season.

Sean Kilpatrick Signs With Warriors

Sean Kilpatrick earned First Team All-America honors as a senior at the University of Cincinnati in 2013-14.

Pistons Waive Hasheem Thabeet, Brian Cook, Lorenzo Brown, Josh Bostic

All four players were on non-guaranteed deals for training camp.

Wolves Waive Kyrylo Fesenko

Kyrylo Fesenko played in just one preseason game for the Wolves.

Lakers' Annual Income From Local TV Deal Hinges On Ratings

It is believed that the Lakers continue to remain competitive and not rebuild entirely due to their local television deal.
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