Basketball Wiretap

Dennis Schroder, Hawks Agree To Four-Year, $70M Extension

Oct 26, 2016 4:07 PM

Dennis Schroder and the Atlanta Hawks have agreed upon a four-year, $70 million contract extension. Schroder will receive $62 million in guaranteed money over the next four seasons.

The Hawks traded away Jeff Teague in the offseason in a move that signaled their commitment to Schroeder long-term at point guard.

Schroder averaged 11.0 points, 2.6 rebounds and 4.4 assists in 20.3 minutes per game last season with a PER of 15.5.

Schroder was the 17th overall pick in the 2013 NBA Draft out of Germany.

Marc Stein, Zach Lowe/ESPN

Tags: Dennis Schroder, Atlanta Hawks, NBA, NBA Signing Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

R.J. Hunter Close To Deal With Bulls

Oct 26, 2016 7:27 PM

The Chicago Bulls and R.J. Hunter are engaged in serious talks on a deal.

Hunter was waived by the Boston Celtics as part of their final roster cuts for the regular season.

Hunter was the 28th overall pick in the 2015 NBA Draft out of Georgia State.

The Bulls are in need of perimeter shooting on the wing.

Shams Charania/The Vertical

Tags: R.J. Hunter, Chicago Bulls, NBA, NBA Signing Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

Cap Holds For Players Coming Off Rookie Contracts Could Increase

Oct 26, 2016 11:04 AM

Cap holds attached to free agents coming off rookie deals could jump to 250 and 300 percent of their prior salaries, which is an increase from 200 and 250 percent in the NBA's new collective bargaining agreement.

The San Antonio Spurs, Detroit Pistons and Washington Wizards held off on extensions with Kawhi Leonard, Andre Drummond and Bradley Beal, respectively, to maintain a lower cap number.

Cap holds attached to players with more experience would stay the same, though that could change. The Golden State Warriors are counting on Stephen Curry's $18 million cap hold for the 2017 offseason to fit Kevin Durant, Andre Iguodala and Shaun Livingston.

Zach Lowe/ESPN


D'Angelo Russell: There's Freedom In Kobe Not Being Around

Oct 26, 2016 7:38 PM

D'Angelo Russell and the Los Angeles Lakers begin life without Kobe Bryant this season and he feels like it will be a liberating experience.

"We're all about playing together now," said Bryant. "It's not about one guy anymore. It's about sacrificing for the team." Adds Russell, "Kobe deserved every bit of attention he got in his last year, but there's freedom in Kobe not being around." 

Russell was the second overall pick in the 2015 NBA Draft and will have the biggest role on offense for the Lakers.

Russell scored 13.2 points in 28.2 minutes per game last season with a True Shooting Percentage of .507 and usage of 24.1 percent.

Sam Alipour/ESPN

Tags: D'Angelo Russell, Los Angeles Lakers, NBA, NBA B-Ball IQ

James Harden Excited To Increase Assists As Rockets Enter Season With 'Different Vibe'

Oct 26, 2016 5:16 PM

While James Harden has always been a prolific scorer, his ability as a passer may return to the public consciousness this season under Mike D'Antoni.

"You see the joy in my teammates getting shots and making shots," Harden recently told Bleacher Report. "They're comfortable. Everybody's happy. When they're happy, I'm happy. It's a different vibe. We're sacrificing for each other. That's where we are. We've got a long way to go, but for now it feels good."

D'Antoni decided in the offseason that he'd officially make Harden their point guard.

"It shocked me at first," Harden said. "And I kind of thought about it, and I was like, 'Yeah! I'm a passer. That's what I do. I create. I create and I give people opportunities to make them happy, to make them score.'"

D'Antoni wants Harden to create for others while also remaining aggressive as a scorer.

"Hopefully, he'll double his number of assists, and he had seven or eight [7.5] last year," D'Antoni said. "I hope he can average double that. He's one of the best passers I've been around."

Last season, Harden became the fourth player in NBA history to average at least 29 points, seven assists and six rebounds per game, joining Oscar Robertson, LeBron James and Michael Jordan.

"It's always been that way," Harden said of his passing. "That's why I call myself an all-around player, because I've been doing it for so long. I might not get as much credit as I deserve, but that's not for me to decide. I still go out there and just do what I've got to do. Eventually it will happen and people will figure it out."


Kevin Ding/Bleacher Report

Tags: James Harden, Houston Rockets, NBA, NBA B-Ball IQ

Joel Embiid Considered Quitting Basketball Last October

Oct 26, 2016 12:55 PM

Last October when Joel Embiid had been ruled out for what would have been his second NBA season, a piece in The Cauldron outlined his rehab and a number of negative headlines followed. Embiid was upset by both the timing (as it was the day before the anniversary of his brother Arthur's death) and the content and he considered quitting the NBA to return to Cameroon.

“I wanted to get away from all this drama,” Embiid recalls, “and stay away.”

Embiid had been in America for four years and lived in four cities.

“I never had a girlfriend before, but back then I had some type of girlfriend." Embiid says. “One day I told her my whole story.”

Embiid's ex-girlfriend encouraged him to continue his career despite the adversity. 

Embiid is engaging and charismatic while also being purposely funny.

“You know how I learned to shoot?” Embiid says. “I watched white people. Just regular white people. They really put their elbow in and finish up top. You can find videos of them online.”

Embiid grew up in an upper middle class home in Cameroon and his mother drove a Mercedes.

“I was a little soft,” Embiid says, “but the Americans had no idea about any of that. They just knew I was from Africa. They thought I grew up poor, in the jungle, killing lions. I was like, If that’s how they think of me, I’m going to use it.”

“Joel is a maverick,” Brett Brown says. “He’s curious. He’s competitive. Those qualities are going to allow him to maximize his very evident gifts. But when he was out, those qualities sometimes made it a challenge to always walk that Boy Scout’s line.” 

Embiid remains loyal to Sam Hinkie, who stepped down as general manager of the 76ers in April. Embiid channels Hinkie every time he references The Process.

“I think a lot about what I went through and how it prepared me to be a better man,” Embiid says. “I really feel like I’m The Process, like The Process is about me.”

Lee Jenkins/Sports Illustrated

Tags: Joel Embiid, Philadelphia Sixers, NBA, NBA Misc Rumor

Popovich: Kawhi Leonard Now 'More Confident, More Aggressive, More Hungry To Score'

Oct 26, 2016 12:46 PM

After Kawhi Leonard scored a career high 35 points in the San Antonio Spurs' 129-100 win over the Golden State Warriors, Gregg Popovich was asked by Nate Duncan what he saw about Leonard that was different from previous seasons.

Leonard has become a much better player on offense over the past few seasons.

“He basically tells me what he wants to do now,” Popovich said of Leonard. “He’ll take the ball. He’ll send the screener away. He’ll decide if he wants to go one-on-one with no screen, no pick. He is much more demonstrative, looks for his shots more. He knows he has a green light. I think that’s the difference. He’s making 3s or he’s driving it. Now he’s finding people on the court. While people are giving him attention, he’s finding people like Patty Mills for wide-open shots. He’s a tough cover. He’s really just more confident, more aggressive, more hungry to score than in the past.”

Nate Duncan/Dunc'd On Podcast

Tags: Kawhi Leonard, San Antonio Spurs, NBA, NBA B-Ball IQ

Kevin Durant: Blowout Loss To Spurs 'Woke Us Up A Bit'

Oct 26, 2016 11:12 AM

The Golden State Warriors were blown out by the San Antonio Spurs 129-100 on their homecourt in the regular season debut for Kevin Durant.

Durant scored 27 points on 10-for-17 shooting to go with 10 rebounds.

"It's a nice little slap in the face," said Stephen Curry.

"It's a slap in the face. It woke us up a bit, and we're looking forward to getting better," said Durant.

"I'm sure the story tomorrow will be, 'KD broke up the chemistry and we can't win with KD,' and all these other things which is going to come with the territory," Draymond Green said following the loss. "We're looking forward to that. We already know that's coming."

"Kevin is so good that he's going to look good in any setting with any group of four around him," said Steve Kerr. "It wasn't about Kevin at all. It wasn't about one particular player; it was about the group."

Chris Haynes/ESPN

Tags: Golden State Warriors, NBA

Lakers Exercise 17-18 Options On D'Angelo Russell, Julius Randle, Larry Nance Jr.

Oct 26, 2016 4:47 PM

he Los Angeles Lakers have exercised their team options for the 2017-18 season on forwards Larry Nance Jr. and Julius Randle, and guard D’Angelo Russell.

Nance Jr., selected with the 27th pick in the 2015 NBA Draft, appeared in 63 games (22 starts) in his rookie season, tallying three double-doubles. He finished third among all rookies in field goal percentage (52.7%) and 10th in rebounds per game (5.0). On January 14 at Golden State, Nance Jr. recorded a career-high six steals, becoming the first Laker rookie since Eddie Jones to have at least six takeaways in a game.

Randle, the seventh overall selection in the 2014 NBA Draft, was one of only nine players in the NBA last season to average a double-double, and did so in the fewest minutes per game of anyone in that group (11.3 points and 10.2 rebounds in 28.2 minutes per game). He appeared in 81 games (60 starts) in 2015-16, registering 34 double-doubles and one triple-double, finishing the season ranked sixth in the NBA in total rebounds. Randle was chosen by USA Basketball to compete with the USA Men’s Select Team that trained with the Men’s National Team in Las Vegas this summer in preparation for the Olympics.

The second overall pick in the 2015 NBA draft, Russell garnered All-Rookie Second Team honors after finishing last season ranked fourth among rookies in assists (3.3) and steals (1.16) per game and fifth in points (13.2) and three-point field goal percentage (35.1%). He was one of 10 American rookie and sophomore players selected to participate in the Rising Stars Challenge at NBA All-Star 2016, and became the youngest player in NBA history to make 120+ three-pointers in a season. Russell was chosen by USA Basketball to compete with the USA Men’s Select Team that trained with the Men’s National Team in Las Vegas this summer in preparation for the Olympics.

RealgM Staff Report

Tags: Julius Randle, D'Angelo Russell, Larry Nance, Jr., Los Angeles Lakers, NBA, NBA Signing Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

Austin Rivers Turned Down More Money To Re-Sign With Clippers

Oct 26, 2016 1:19 PM

Austin Rivers says he took less money to re-sign with the Los Angeles Clippers.

Rivers received interest from the Houston Rockets, Brooklyn Nets and New York Knicks.

“I took less to come back here,” he said. “... I’m not taking this for granted. I was on a team where it was very bad. There are only four or five teams in the league with a realistic chance to win this year, and I think we’re one of them. I’m not taking this for granted. I know if I go somewhere else, I might not ever be on a team like this again. A lot of people go their whole career and never play on a team like this.”

Doc Rivers thought the Clippers could lose his son to the lure of more minutes and a bigger role.

“He could’ve had that opportunity,” Doc Rivers said. “For him to come back, it shows that winning is far more important and he enjoys the group.”


Austin says it is actually harder to play for his father than it would be for another coach.

“It’s the complete opposite. People who think that are (expletive) idiots. It actually gets me angry,” he said. “You can say it. ‘People are idiots.’ You can write that one down.

“I haven’t played for him my whole life, so it’s not like I had it easy. The whole rest of my career – when I was still successful – the No. 1 player in high school, one of the top five, top 10 players in college at Duke. I wasn’t with my father. I haven’t had it easy.”


Dan Woike/Orange County Register

Tags: Austin Rivers, Los Angeles Clippers, NBA, NBA Signing Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

Knicks Tried To Sign Nicolas Batum In Free Agency
New York envisioned adding both Nicolas Batum and Joakim Noah to their starting lineup.

Shams Charania/The Vertical

76ers Exercise 17-18 Options On Joel Embiid, Jahlil Okafor, Nik Stauskas
Joel Embiid was the third overall pick in 2014 while Jahlil Okafor was picked third overall in 2015.

RealGM Staff Report

Clifford: I've Never Seen Anyone Improve Skill Level Like MKG
The Hornets are optimistic on the development of Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, who was limited to just seven games during the 15-16 season.

Zach Lowe/ESPN

Terrance Ferguson Suspended One Game For Striking Opponent
Terrance Ferguson is playing for the Adelaide 36ers after deciding not to attend Arizona for his freshman season.

RealGM Staff Report

Dunc'd On: Spurs/Warriors, Jazz/Blazers, Knicks/Cavs
A full wrap-ups of the three opening night games: Golden State/San Antonio, Portland/Utah and Cleveland/New York.

RealGM Staff Report

Cavs' Rings Feature Comeback From 3-1 Down Against Warriors
Three white diamonds depict the Warriors' wins, and four garnets represent the Cavaliers' wins.

Dave McMenamin/ESPN

Paul George: My Only Goal Is Playing For A Championship
Paul George can become a free agent in 2018.

Nate Taylor/Indianapolis Star

Chris Hansen's Group Offers To Build Seattle Arena Without Any Public Money
The group concedes in the letter that "the economic landscape has changed."

Chris Daniels/KING 5 News

Dan Gilbert To Meet With LeBron James To Discuss Direction Of Franchise
Dan Gilbert said he and LeBron James have come a long way in the six years since the 2010 offseason.

Dave McMenamin/ESPN

Magic Exercise 17-18 Options On Aaron Gordon, Mario Hezonja, Elfrid Payton
Aaron Gordon, Mario Hezonja and Elfrid Payton are now signed through the 17-18 season.

RealGM Staff Report

Rex Kalamian: Thunder Lost Personal Bond With Trade Of James Harden
Rex Kalamian said the trade of James Harden went beyond basketball and hurt the bonds that had formed when the Thunder were young.

Chris O'Leary/Toronto Star

Derrick Favors To Miss Utah's Season Opener
Derrick Favors will miss the regular season opener for the Jazz against the Blazers due to a bone bruise and IT band soreness in his left knee.

Mike Richman/Oregonain

RealGM Radio: Southeast Division With Mike Prada, Adi Joseph
Host Danny Leroux, Mike Prada of SB Nation and Adi Joseph of the Sporting News break down the NBA's Southeast Division.

RealGM Staff Report

'Huge Influx Of Money' Motivated Both Sides On New CBA
The NBA's new television deal kicks in this season, which has substantially raised basketball related income.


Dunc'd On: Award Predictions And News
Season predictions for all the teams and awards, plus cut-down day news.

RealGM Staff Report

Suns Exercise 17-18 Options On Devin Booker, T.J. Warren
Devin Booker ranked fifth in the NBA in scoring this preseason, averaging 19.6 points in five appearances.

RealGM Staff Report

Kings Waive Jordan Farmar, Isaiah Cousins, Lamar Patterson
Jordan Farmar ended last season for Dave Joerger and the Grizzlies.

James Ham/Comcast

Cavs Waive Dahntay Jones To Keep DeAndre Liggins
Dahntay Jones was signed at the end of the 15-16 season and gave the Cavs a veteran bench presence.

Chris Haynes/ESPN

Pistons Claim Beno Udrih Off Waivers
With Reggie Jackson injured, the Pistons have a need for depth at point guard.

Shams Charania/The Vertical

Suns Release Archie Goodwin
Archie Goodwin has been a promising prospect since entering the NBA in 2013 after one season at Kentucky.

Shams Charania/The Vertical