Basketball Wiretap

Doc Rivers: Chris Paul, DeAndre Jordan, Blake Griffin Understand They Need Each Other To Win

May 29, 2015 1:51 AM

Doc Rivers denied a reported rift between Chris Paul and DeAndre Jordan and believes they, along with Blake Griffin, understand their individual importance toward winning.

"I can put this to rest: They get along great," Rivers said on The Beast 980. "Clearly, like everybody, they don't get along all the time, and they don't get along with me all the time, either, by the way. I don't see that as an issue. I think all three, and I'm including Blake in this as well, understand how important the other guy is to them. Meaning, they all three need each other to win, and I think all three get that and all three know that and all three want to do it together. To me, that's the most important thing."

Rivers has already said the Clippers will offer Jordan a max contract of five years for $108.7 million.

Arash Markazi/ESPN

Tags: Chris Paul, DeAndre Jordan, Blake Griffin, Los Angeles Clippers, NBA, NBA Misc Rumor

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Jeff Hornacek On Iowa State: I'm Coach Of The Suns As Far As I Know

May 29, 2015 12:13 AM

Fred Hoiberg is widely expected to leave Iowa State this offseason to become head coach of the Chicago Bulls.

There have been reports that Jeff Hornacek could be a candidate for the Iowa State job should Hoiberg leave. Hornacek played collegiately at Iowa State like Hoiberg.

Hoiberg was asked about the Iowa State job during a radio appearance on Thursday.

“I can’t comment on that,” Hornacek said. “I’m the coach of the Suns. It’s an interesting coaching carousel that goes on in the league and even down to the college level.

“If those things ever come about, and the timing was right, stuff like that, yes, but as far as I know I’m the coach of the Suns.”

Hornacek’s contract with the Suns is reportedly for less than $2 million a year, a bit less than the $2.2 Hoiberg made last season and the average compensation of $2.6 million per year over the life of his contract.

“It’s sometimes surprising to see how much the college coaches are making, even the assistant level,” Hornacek said. “I’ve seen some of those assistant coaches’ salaries and I’m like, ‘Holy crap, I think that’s more than probably some of our assistants make.’

“If you look at what happened to the NBA coaching salaries, I don’t know if there was a directive or whatever but I saw the average salary for an NBA coach now is still less than what it was six years ago. So how does the salary for coaches go down? It’s starting to get back up there where it was previously but it’s still not even at the level it was six years ago.

“That will probably end up changing here soon, too. I think you’ve already seen a good portion of it with some of these new coaches that are getting jobs in the last year or so. It’s becoming a different level.”

Travis Hines/Ames Tribune

Tags: Phoenix Suns, Iowa State Cyclones, NCAA, NBA, NBA Misc Rumor

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Warriors Considered 5-12 Favorites By Vegas To Win Finals

May 28, 2015 11:45 PM

The Golden State Warriors are 5-12 favorites to win The Finals, according to Vegas sportsbooks. The Cleveland Cavaliers are underdogs at 2-1.

"We made the Warriors a six-point favorite in Game 1, then we took the next six games and played it out," said Jeff Sherman, head NBA oddsmaker for the SuperBook. "We take who would be the favorite in each game, by how many points and what the money line would be. We then put individual prices in and it calculates what the series price should be." 

The Cavaliers were longshots at 60-1 to win The Finals this season prior to LeBron James signing with the club, but the books don't have a troublesome amount of liability on those bets.

"We had them at 60-1, but as soon as the rumors started, we dropped it down to 20-1, and then when LeBron announced he was coming back, it was down to 5-2," Sherman said.


Jay Rood, the head of the race and sportsbook for MGM Resorts, said his book across 12 properties took about 20 bets at 50-1 on the Cavs before James signed, which is a blip when considering how many total bets were made.


The Warriors opened at 25-1 and that number came down as the season progressed, but the books made money off future bets on the Los Angeles Clippers, San Antonio Spurs and even the Los Angeles Lakers.

Darren Rovell/ESPN

Tags: Cleveland Cavaliers, Golden State Warriors, NBA, NBA Playoffs

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Dunc'd On Basketball Podcast: May 29th (Kevin Pelton)

May 28, 2015 10:43 PM

In Friday's episode, ESPN Insider Kevin Pelton (@KPelton) joins Nate Duncan (@NateDuncanNBA) to discuss the Tom Thibodeau firing in Chicago, preview the Finals, and discuss the highest-rated prospects on his draft board.

Click here to listen or download

Subscribe on iTunes or via the XML feed.

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Tags: NBA, Dunc'd On

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Pelicans Discuss Head Coaching Job With Vinny Del Negro

May 28, 2015 8:55 PM

The New Orleans Pelicans have discussed their head coaching vacancy with Vinny Del Negro.

Del Negro emerged as a candidate after the Pelicans considered his prior experience with the Chicago Bulls and Los Angeles Clippers.

Del Negro reached the playoffs four times in five seasons.

Del Negro was credited with playing a part in the development of several talented young players in both jobs. He worked in the Phoenix Suns' front office, where he ascended from player personnel director to assistant general manager.

Adrian Wojnarowski/Yahoo! Sports

Tags: New Orleans Pelicans, NBA, NBA Misc Rumor

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Dwyane Wade, Heat Have 'Sizable Gap' On Contract Plans

May 28, 2015 5:13 PM

Dwyane Wade opted out of the final two years of his contract that would have paid him $41.6 million and instead accepted a two-year, $31 million deal. The contract includes a player option next for $16.1 million.

Wade said last summer that he was curious to see what he could command in the summer of 2016, when the cap is expected to skyrocket from $67 million to $89 million. 


But according to associates, there is a sentiment in Wade's camp that he could opt out this summer with the hope the Miami Heat would give him a three-year deal.

The Heat would be content with Wade opting in for next season, the re-signing for significant but not huge money for another two seasons in 2016.

A sizable gap between what Wade would like over the next three seasons and what the Heat are prepared to pay him has materialized.

Barry Jackson/Miami Herald

Tags: Dwyane Wade, Miami Heat, NBA, NBA Signing Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

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Warriors, Cavaliers Efficiency In Regular Season / Playoffs

May 28, 2015 1:36 PM

The Cleveland Cavaliers ranked just 18th in defensive rating during the regular season, but they became a vastly improved side on that end of the floor following the acquisition of Timofey Mozgov.

During the playoffs, the Cavaliers have become even better on defense, allowing 101.9 points per 100 possessions during 14 games against the Boston Celtics, Chicago Bulls and Atlanta Hawks.

The Golden State Warriors were the best team in the regular season on the defensive end, allowing 101.4 points per 100 possessions. In the playoffs, they're also allowing 101.4 points per 100 possessions.

On the offensive end, the Cavaliers scored 111.1 points per 100 possessions, which ranked third in the regular behind the Warriors at 111.6.

The playoffs is heavily skewed by the quality of the competition.

Regular Season (Off / Def / EDiff)

Warriors: 111.6 / 101.4 / 10.3

Cavaliers: 111.1 / 106.3 / 4.8

Playoffs (Off / Def / EDiff)

Warriors: 109.9 / 101.4 / 8.5

Cavaliers: 111.5 / 101.9 / 9.7

RealGM Staff Report

Tags: Cleveland Cavaliers, Golden State Warriors, NBA, NBA B-Ball IQ, NBA Playoffs

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Bulls Fire Tom Thibodeau

May 28, 2015 12:10 PM

The Chicago Bulls have fired Tom Thibodeau as head coach.

Thibodeau was hired as head coach in 2010.

Thibodeau and the Bulls' front office have had a deteriorating relationship for several seasons. The Bulls' front office entered the offseason hoping to be able to receive compensation from a rival team interested in hiring Thibodeau, but no such market emerged when it was clear the franchise would eventually fire him. 

Thibodeau's contract has offset language that will allow the Bulls to recoup some of his salary.

Fred Hoiberg is widely considered the frontrunner to become the next head coach of the Bulls.

Jerry Reinsdorf said, “The Chicago Bulls have a history of achieving great success on and off the court. These accomplishments have been possible because of an organizational culture where input from all parts of the organization has been welcomed and valued, there has been a willingness to participate in a free flow of information, and there have been clear and consistent goals. While the head of each department of the organization must be free to make final decisions regarding his department, there must be free and open interdepartmental discussion and consideration of everyone's ideas and opinions. These internal discussions must not be considered an invasion of turf, and must remain private. Teams that consistently perform at the highest levels are able to come together and be unified across the organization-staff, players, coaches, management and ownership. When everyone is on the same page, trust develops and teams can grow and succeed together. Unfortunately, there has been a departure from this culture. To ensure that the Chicago Bulls can continue to grow and succeed, we have decided that a change in the head coaching position is required. Days like today are difficult, but necessary for us to achieve our goals and fulfill our commitments to our fans. I appreciate the contributions that Tom Thibodeau made to the Bulls organization. I have always respected his love of the game and wish him well in the future.”

"When Tom was hired in 2010, he was right for our team and system at that time, and over the last five years we have had some success with Tom as our head coach,” said Gar Forman. “But as we looked ahead and evaluated how we as a team and an organization could continue to grow and improve, we believed a change in approach was needed."

RealGM Staff Report

Tags: Chicago Bulls, NBA, NBA Misc Rumor

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Some Bulls' Players Didn't Endorse Retaining Tom Thibodeau

May 28, 2015 10:58 AM

The Chicago Bulls are expected to resolve the future of Tom Thibodeau by Friday with his dismissal likely unless Jerry Reinsdorf unexpectedly intervenes at the last minute.

Thibodeau is owed $9 million over the final two years of his contract.

Fred Hoiberg is widely considered the favorite to replace Thibodeau.

According to sources, some players didn't endorse Thibodeau's return in exit meetings with management.

Some players have been making separate offseason plans for several summers to get a break from Thibodeau, who rarely leaves the practice facility.

Thibodeau has had no dialogue with John Paxson, the executive vice president of basketball operations, since Paxson suggested to Thibodeau that he cancel an unplanned practice he had scheduled in January and merely hold a team meeting with open dialogue with players. Several players praised the meeting. 

Thibodeau is so isolated that he typically spends all day behind his closed office door.

Thibodeau reportedly never got over management letting Omer Asik and Kyle Korver leave for nothing in free agency, took months to sign his contract extension and bristled at management's imposing of minute restrictions for Joakim Noah, Derrick Rose and Kirk Hinrich this season.

Sources confirmed Thibodeau's contract contains offset language, which means the Bulls' financial commitment would be "offset" by the amount he would make if hired by another team before the deal expires in 2017.

Update: The Bulls announced the firing of Thibodeau on Thursday.

K.C. Johnson/Chicago Tribune

Tags: Chicago Bulls, NBA, NBA Misc Rumor

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Marc Gasol: Spurs Are An Example Franchise

May 28, 2015 10:52 AM

Marc Gasol is expected to be pursued in free agency by the San Antonio Spurs.

Gasol's free agency plans have remained a mystery and the common expectation has been he would re-sign with the Memphis Grizzlies.

"I'm a free agent, but I still have not raised anything," said Gasol of his future. "In the next few weeks, I will begin to speak with different franchises. My brother has not advised me about the different possibilities, but the decision will be complicated. My family spends time in Memphis and has even worked in the Saint Jude Hospital."

"San Antonio is an example franchise and I've always admired Tim Duncan," said Gasol. "But we'll see in the summer. "

The Spurs can create maximum contract cap space.

Abraham Romero/ (h/t Dan McCarney/San Antonio Express-News)

Tags: Marc Gasol, Memphis Grizzlies, San Antonio Spurs, NBA, NBA Signing Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

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Klay Thompson Developed Concussion-Like Symptoms After Game 5
Klay Thompson had been hit in the head by Trevor Ariza at the 9:31 mark of the fourth quarter.

Sam Amick/USA Today

Dunc'd On Basketball Podcast: May 28th
In Thursday's episode, Nate Duncan and Daniel Leroux of RealGM recap the Warriors closing out the Rockets in a hard-fought game and advancing to the NBA Finals. They also talk about Houston's future and answer listener questions.

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Scott Skiles Interviews With Pelicans
Scott Skiles remains the frontrunner for the Magic job, but he has also been interviewed by the New Orleans Pelicans.

Marc Stein/ESPN

Dwight Howard Receives 7th Tech Of Playoffs
Dwight Howard will be suspended for Game 6, if necessary, unless the technical is rescinded.

RealGM Staff Report

Kyle Korver Undergoes Ankle Surgery, Out Three Months
Kyle Korver had surgery to repair ligament damage in his right ankle.

RealGM Staff Report

Bulls, Pelicans Emerge With Interest In Royce White
Royce White has worked out in Minneapolis this season, and recently had a workout with the Clippers, a source told RealGM's Shams Charania.

Shams Charania/RealGM

Jeff Van Gundy Formally Interviews With Pelicans
Jeff Van Gundy and Pelicans' officials met in the Bay Area to discuss the opening.

Adrian Wojnarowski/Yahoo! Sports

Ford: Dario Saric Is One Of The Better Playmaking Fours
Dario Saric was the 12th overall pick in the 2014 NBA Draft and currently plays for Anadolu Efes.

Chad Ford/ESPN

Bulls Seriously Considering Firing Tom Thibodeau
The Bulls are giving serious consideration to firing Tom Thibodeau and absorbing the financial hit, according to sources.

Marc Stein/ESPN

Source: Bulls Tried To Have Tom Thibodeau Hire Doug Collins As Assistant Coach
The Bulls' front office reportedly attempted to have Tom Thibodeau hire an offensive-minded assistant coach.

Joe Cowley/Chicago Sun-Times

Knicks Considering Willie Cauley-Stein At No. 4
The Knicks realize they need to improve defensively, which is why Willie Cauley-Stein and Justise Winslow could be options.

Chad Ford/ESPN

Lakers Would Need To See 'Heck Of An Opportunity' To Trade No. 2 Pick
The last time a team traded a top-two pick for a veteran was in 2001 when the Clippers traded the rights to Tyson Chandler to the Bulls for Elton Brand.

Bill Oram/Orange County Register

DeMarre Carroll Won't Need Surgery Ahead Of Free Agency
The high appraisal for DeMarre Carroll is four years and $50 million in free agency.

Jeff Schultz/Atlanta Journal Consitution

Wizards Hope To Have New Practice Facility Location By End Of Offseason
A new facility could potentially host the Wizards' D-League team in the future.

Jorge Castillo/Washington Post

Dunc'd On Basketball Podcast: May 27th
In Wednesday's episode, Nate Duncan and Daniel Leroux of RealGM recap the Cavs closing out the Hawks and advancing to the NBA Finals. They also talk about the future of both teams, discuss some NBA news and answer listener questions.

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LeBron Believes Finals Return With Cavs Is Unfinished Business
This will mark LeBron James' fifth consecutive Finals appearance.

Dave McMenamin/ESPN

Tom Thibodeau's Contract With Bulls Contains Offset Language
Jerry Reinsdorf was reportedly extremely upset with Tom Thibodeau after Jeff Van Gundy criticized the organization during a January broadcast on ESPN.

K.C. Johnson/Chicago Tribune

Kyrie Irving To Start Game 4 With 25-Minute Time Limit
Kyrie Irving visited Dr. James Andrew before Game 2.

Marc J. Spears/Yahoo! Sports

NBA Decides Against Upgrading Dwight Howard's Flagrant Foul On Bogut
Dwight Howard elbowed Andrew Bogut and some said it could be upgraded to a flagrant foul two, which would have resulted in a suspension for Howard.

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RealGM Radio: Sam Vecenie On The NBA Draft
Daniel Leroux talks with Sam Vecenie of CBS Sports about the NBA Draft, including ranking the top prospects, the impact of the lottery results, and some potential sleepers.

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