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Some Teams View Kevin Durant Meetings As Chance To Lay 2017 Groundwork

Jun 27, 2016 11:17 AM

Kevin Durant is expected to ultimately re-sign with the Oklahoma City Thunder on a one-plus-one contract and become a free agent again in 2017.

Teams meeting with Durant feel like they're laying the groundwork for his 2017 offseason as they anticipate that probable outcome.

The Thunder nearly reached The Finals in 2016 and the ability for Durant to re-sign on a short-term deal and then take a longer view when Russell Westbrook is also a free agent is appealing.

Even if Durant left the Thunder in free agency this summer, he would look for a one-plus-one contract in order to maximize his salary.

Adrian Wojnarowski/The Vertical (via Adam Kaufman/CBS Sports)

Tags: Kevin Durant, Boston Celtics, Golden State Warriors, Houston Rockets, Los Angeles Clippers, Los Angeles Lakers, Miami Heat, New York Knicks, San Antonio Spurs, Oklahoma City Thunder, NBA, NBA Signing Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

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Hassan Whiteside Focused On 'Best Situation' More Than 'Loyalty'

Jun 27, 2016 10:17 AM

Hassan Whiteside hopes to quickly make a decision when free agency opens on July 1st.

"I really don't think it's about loyalty," said Whiteside. "I think it's just about the best situation for myself and that's what I think it is."

The Miami Heat have tried to take advantage of discussions with Whiteside before rival teams can meet with him on July 1st.

"I talked to Pat Riley probably two weeks ago," said Whiteside. "We had a meeting and we talked and it went good. And we'll see what happens."

Whiteside is considering other options in addition to the Heat.

"I didn't say it wouldn't be the best situation, but we're going to see what happens," he said. "So it's not that I'm really counting the Heat off or I'm counting on another team. It's just open."

Ira Winderman/South Florida Sun Sentinel

Tags: Hassan Whiteside, Miami Heat, NBA, NBA Signing Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

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Lakers To Aggressively Pursue Hassan Whiteside

Jun 25, 2016 2:44 PM

The Los Angeles Lakers plan to aggressively pursue Hassan Whiteside this offseason.

Whiteside will be an unrestricted free agent and the Miami Heat must use their cap space to re-sign him as they only have early Bird rights and they also cannot offer a fifth season on his deal.

The Lakers' top priority in free agency are rim protection and perimeter shooting.

The Dallas Mavericks and Portland Trail Blazers will also pursue Whiteside.

Marc Stein, Ramona Shelburne/ESPN

Tags: Hassan Whiteside, Los Angeles Lakers, Miami Heat, NBA, NBA Signing Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

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Celtics, Clippers, Heat, Warriors, Spurs, Thunder Get Meetings With Kevin Durant

Jun 25, 2016 11:13 AM

Represenatives of Kevin Durant at Roc Nation are working to solidify invitations with the Boston Celtics, Golden State Warriors, Los Angeles Clippers, Miami Heat, San Antonio Spurs and the Oklahoma City Thunder.

Durant is expected to take the meetings in New York but teams are still awaiting a decision on the final location.

The Thunder remain the frontrunners to re-sign Durant on a one-plus-one contract, according to sources.

But sources say the Warriors, more than than any other rival team, have Durant's attention.

The Denver Nuggets, New York Knicks, Los Angeles Lakers, Houston Rockets and Washington Wizards could still capture meetings with Durant but are currently outside the process.

Durant will leave for a publicity tour in the Far East on July 9th and a decision is expected before he departs.

Adrian Wojnarowski/The Vertical

Tags: Kevin Durant, Boston Celtics, Denver Nuggets, Golden State Warriors, Houston Rockets, Los Angeles Clippers, Los Angeles Lakers, Miami Heat, New York Knicks, San Antonio Spurs, Washington Wizards, Oklahoma City Thunder, NBA, NBA Signing Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

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Warriors Interested In Al Horford, Joakim Noah, Hassan Whiteside

Jun 24, 2016 5:24 PM

While the Golden State Warriors will pursue Kevin Durant as their first option in free agency, they have alternate plans in place and that includes going after a big.

The Warriors believe they can't thrive without a center who attacks the rim and scores inside.

Golden State is considering pursuing Al Horford, Joakim Noah and Hassan Whiteside.

Opposing defenses began to abandon Andrew Bogut and Festus Ezeli, which made stopping the Warriors' primary options simpler.

Marcus Thompson/San Jose Mercury News

Tags: Al Horford, Hassan Whiteside, Joakim Noah, Atlanta Hawks, Golden State Warriors, Miami Heat, NBA, NBA Signing Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

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Mavericks Targeting Hassan Whiteside, Mike Conley As Top Priorities

Jun 23, 2016 5:01 PM

The Dallas Mavericks expect to be granted a meeting with Hassan Whiteside in the opening hours of free agency.

The Mavericks are targeting Whiteside and Mike Conley as they attempt to remain competitive in the final seasons of Dirk Nowitzki's career.

Whiteside and Conley are both expected to command maximum contracts, prices that sources say the Mavs are prepared to pay.

The Mavericks and San Antonio Spurs are among the teams that would interest Conley. Conley's interest in the Mavericks is in large part due to his respect for Rick Carlisle.

Tim MacMahon, Marc Stein/ESPN

Tags: Hassan Whiteside, Mike Conley, Dallas Mavericks, Memphis Grizzlies, Miami Heat, NBA, NBA Signing Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

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LeBron James Explains 'Secret Motivation' Remark About Miami

Jun 20, 2016 4:42 PM

LeBron James' "secret motivation" became a talking point of the 2015 Finals.

James was asked about it again during his press conference after winning The Finals on Sunday.

James said he would tell Dave McMenamin about it privately.

“[James] told me that when he left Miami and people who he thought he had strong, trusting relationships with – he said, I’m not going to name names, but someone told me that ‘you’re making the biggest mistake of your career.’

“And he said it really hurt him. Basically, he felt taken for granted. ‘Look, I just gave you four years of my prime, and you’re not going to be comfortable with my decision and root me on? You’re going to make me feel bad going out the door?’”

While James didn't name anyone specifically, it is widely believed to be Pat Riley.

Dave McMenamin/ESPN (via Deadspin)

Tags: LeBron James, Cleveland Cavaliers, Miami Heat, NBA, NBA Misc Rumor

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Woj: Franchises On LeBron James' Free Agency Watch Again

Jun 17, 2016 10:41 AM

LeBron James will be a free agent again this offseason and Adrian Wojnarowski suggests he could consider leaving the Cleveland Cavaliers this offseason should they win a title.

James has been on a series of one-plus-one contracts since returning to the Cavaliers in 2014.

"One more victory, one more magnificent night at Oracle Arena, and James will get to run off with his buddies again somewhere warm. Miami. Los Angeles. Wherever," writes Wojnarowski.

Both the Miami Heat and Los Angeles Lakers either have the cap space or can create the space to sign him to a significant contract in free agency. The Los Angeles Clippers could conceivably offer a package built around Blake Griffin.

 

"There’s a restlessness about James that craves the next big move, the next power play," continues Wojnarowski. "Franchises are on watch again, believing nothing’s forever in Northeast Ohio. Sooner or later, there’s a belief that James comes into play again, a line of thinking that his inner circle has done nothing to dissuade. As for James himself, well, he has gone so far as to publicly describe an end-of-career scenario that doesn’t include Cleveland.

"Part of it, yes, along with those one-year contracts, is a way to mess with owner Dan Gilbert. James has great fondness for coach Ty Lue and respect for general manager David Griffin, but he’ll never embrace Gilbert – only perform despite him.

"Yes, James could come back to Cleveland and defend a potential Cavaliers title in 2017 and proceed to join the run of superstar pals in free agency: Chris Paul and Kevin Durant. They can wait one more year for Carmelo Anthony in 2018. Or, Golden State wins Game 7, and maybe James gives Cleveland the championship in 2017 – and makes his move then.

"Cleveland can’t hold him to his Sports Illustrated letter, his promises of becoming something noble and lasting. It wanted a title, and he’s close to delivering one. James becomes untouchable with a Cavaliers title. Fifty-two years without a pro sports championship here, and Cleveland can only tell him: Thank you, and goodbye again."

Adrian Wojnarowski/The Vertical

Tags: LeBron James, Cleveland Cavaliers, Los Angeles Clippers, Los Angeles Lakers, Miami Heat, NBA, NBA Signing Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

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Keith Smart Joins Grizzlies As Assistant Coach

Jun 9, 2016 8:58 PM

Keith Smart will join David Fizdale's coaching staff with the Memphis Grizzlies.

Smart has been with the Miami Heat as an assistant coach over the past two seasons where he worked with Fizdale.

Smart was previously a head coach with the Golden State Warriors and Sacramento Kings.

The Grizzlies previously hired J.B. Bickerstaff and Nick Van Exel to Fizdale's staff.

Marc Stein, Marc J. Spears/ESPN

Tags: Memphis Grizzlies, Miami Heat, NBA, NBA Misc Rumor

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LeBron James Has Tried To Bring Heat Culture To Cavaliers

Jun 2, 2016 11:29 AM

Ever since LeBron James returned to the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2014, he has been trying to bring elements of the Miami Heat culture with him to the Cavs.

"LeBron has been trying to do in Cleveland what Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump were doing," a source described it. "Execute a hostile takeover of the party."

This is what was at the core of James' issues with David Blatt and his passive-aggressive behavior towards Kevin Love and Kyrie Irving.

Last offseason, James invited all of the Cavaliers down to Miami for workouts.

"Then there were all these guys responding right away with 'I'm in,' 'I'll be there,' 'Count me in,' 'I'm already here,' " J.R. Smith said. "I mean right down the line. Kevin [Love], Ky[rie Irving], Delly (Matthew Dellavedova), JJ [James Jones], Shump [Iman Shumpert]. All of them, right away."

"You have to understand, it is so much different in Miami than everywhere else," said Zydrunas Ilgauskas, who played seven years with James in Cleveland before joining him in Miami for a season.

"Cleveland is part of the mainstream of the NBA. In Miami, there is one man in charge and that is Pat Riley and everyone falls into line from there. It's very simplified for you. There is one way to do things, his way."

James' childhood left him prone to obsessing over routines and the approach from Riley and Erik Spoelstra resonated. 

James was taken aback by the lack of professionalism he found when returning to Cleveland. Players arrived late, left early and didn't dress appropriately. Blatt surprised James by how lax he was at times despite having the reputation as a tyrant in Europe.

"It's a big job to change a team's culture," Tyronn Lue said. "You have to hold everyone accountable. You have to make sure everyone is on board. And to change culture, you can't treat everyone the same way. Everyone is not going to be treated the same way. They don't take it the same way and you just got to know how to deal with certain people, deal with people on a day-to-day basis and deal with them differently. I just think, when you win, it's easy to change the culture. When you're on losing teams or losing situations, it's a lot harder. I think when you can preach winning and they see the winning, I think it makes it a lot easier to change the culture."

Brian Windhorst/ESPN

Tags: LeBron James, Cleveland Cavaliers, Miami Heat, NBA, NBA Misc Rumor

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Heat Will Try To Persuade Hassan Whiteside To Take Less Than Max
Miami will have to use cap space to sign Hassan Whiteside.

Barry Jackson/Miami Herald

Grizzlies Offer Head Coaching Job To David Fizdale
David Fizdale is currently an assistant coach with the Heat.

Adrian Wojnarowski/The Vertical

David Fizdale Progresses To 2nd Round Of Interviews With Grizzlies
David Fizdale has progressed to an interview with Robert Pera after his first interview with the Grizzlies.

Marc Stein/ESPN

Miami's Top Priority Is To Get Meeting With Kevin Durant
The Heat are limited in how they can pursue Kevin Durant while re-signing Hassan Whiteside and Dwyane Wade where it would be virtually impossible.

Dan Le Betard/ESPN (via Dan Feldman/Pro Basketball Talk)

Miami's Top Offseason Priority Is Re-Signing Hassan Whiteside
The Heat need to use their cap space to re-sign Hassan Whiteside.

Michael Wallace/ESPN

Heat Fear Chris Bosh May Be Forced Into Medical Retirement
Chris Bosh's salary would come off Miami's salary cap in the summer of 2017 if he doesn't return.

Brian Windhorst/ESPN

Heat Rule Out Hassan Whiteside For Game 7
Hassan Whiteside has been listed as day-to-day by the Heat.

Mike Mazzeo/ESPN

DeMarre Carroll, Luol Deng Leave Game 5 With Wrist Injuries
DeMarre Carroll's x-rays were negative while Luol Deng's were "inconclusive" and he'll be reevaluated on Thursday.

Doug Smith/Toronto Star

Hassan Whiteside In Walking Boot, Knee Brace
Erik Spoelstra said "it's way too early to tell" how long Hassan Whiteside will be out.

Barry Jackson/Miami Herald

Dwyane Wade Didn't Intend Disrespect Shooting During 'O Canada'
Dwyane Wade received criticism on social media from Raptors fans and some media members who questioned his decision to take shots while the anthem was played.

Michael Wallace/ESPN

Hassan Whiteside Day-To-Day With Sprained MCL
The Heat did not reveal the extent of the injury and a timetable for Hassan Whiteside's return is unknown.

Jeff Zillgitt/USA Today

Longtime Heat Reporter Believes Chris Bosh Won't Play In NBA Again
Chris Bosh has been ruled out for the remainder of the 2016 NBA Playoffs and his career could be in jeopardy.

Ira Winderman/Sun Sentinel

Chris Bosh Declared Out For Season
The NBPA urged the Heat to resolve Chris Bosh's uncertain situation as he recovers from blood clots.

RealGM Staff Report

LeBron James Already Thinking About Playing Heat In ECF
The Cavaliers and Heat each have three more games in the second round to win.

Dave McMenamin/ESPN

Union Working To Influence Heat On Letting Chris Bosh Return
Chris Bosh is attempting to return to game action as he recovers from blood clots that recurred in February.

RealGM Staff Report

Dwyane Wade Emotional To Learn He Was Prince's Favorite Player
Dwyane Wade cried during the national anthem ahead of Game 7 of the first round series against the Hornets.

Cady Lang/Time

Tyler Johnson Will Play in Game 6
Tyler Johnson had surgery to repair the rotator cuff in his left shoulder on February 3 and has not played in a game since January 26.

Manny Navarro/Miami Herald

Chris Bosh Addresses Heat Before Playoffs Begin
Chris Bosh has been out since the All-Star break due to blood clots.

ESPN

Heat Sign Dorell Wright
Dorell Wright is playoff eligible for the Heat.

Ira Winderman/Sun Sentinel

Briante Weber To Sign Three-Year Deal With Heat
For the D-League season, Briante Weber averaged 10.7 points, 5.3 rebounds and 4.2 assists per game.

Shams Charania/The Vertical