Sep 30, 2014 1:11 PM EDT
The decision by the Miami Heat in the 2013 offseason to amnesty Mike Miller drew the ire of LeBron James.
The move saved the Heat money while taking away a key locker room guy and rotation player with big game experience.
"LeBron thought it was an unnecessary change," Miller told Northeast Ohio Media Group.
Miller signed with the Cleveland Cavaliers this offseason.
"I'm not saying I would have been a difference-maker," Miller said. "San Antonio was unbelievable last year and there are a lot of things that go into a season, but it was difficult for LeBron.
"It was difficult for all of us. It was difficult for me. I had to uproot my family and move again. It was tough. I think he was disappointed because he understands legacies and he understands what he wants to do in life. That's what makes him special."
Sep 30, 2014 7:33 AM EDT
Free agent forward Alonzo Gee has reached agreement on a deal with the Denver Nuggets, a source with knowledge told RealGM.
After deciding on Monday to join the Nuggets, Gee will report to Denver training camp Tuesday.
As one of the best players on the available market, the 6-foot-6 forward brings active defense and athleticism on the wing for the Nuggets.
Gee, 27, has trained vigorously on his overall game and basketball shape in the offseason, when he was traded three separate times and ultimately released by the Sacramento Kings to open a roster spot.
Over five NBA seasons playing for the Cleveland Cavaliers and Washington Wizards, Gee established himself as a contributing role player, averaging 7.9 points and 3.6 rebounds in his career.
Sep 29, 2014 11:53 PM EDT
Kevin Durant candidly discussed his present and future with the Oklahoma City Thunder, making it clear that he is pleased with the franchise's direction and likes his situation.
"We'll keep dancing around (the topic), and by the time it comes it's going to be even more awkward than it was, so it's not a surprise (that people ask him about it) because everybody wants to know," Durant said. "But I'm taking it day by day with the Oklahoma City Thunder. That's my main concern. And whatever the future holds, I don't know, because I can't tell you the future. I'm going to take it a day at a time. I enjoy being here. I enjoy my teammates. I like the direction we're going in, and that's not just a cliché (expletive) answer. That's real."
"I love OKC. I always wanted to be a part of something bigger than just basketball. And what I told myself coming into the league was, 'This city is going to adopt me, I'm going to adopt this city, and we're going to grow together.'"
For their part, the Thunder are confident about their chances to re-sign Durant as a free agent in 2016.
"We know it's there, and we are looking forward to it — the opportunity to re-sign a legacy player — especially when you consider where our team could be at that point, with two more years of experience and cohesion and taking that into account," Presti said. "We have to honor the season in front of us, because we have a tremendous opportunity to win right now and continue to build the tradition of the Thunder. We are fortunate to be in this position, and we want to capture and respect this moment. We have to put that anticipation in its place for now and not allow ourselves to get distracted from the present, regardless of what the future could look like for Kevin and the organization he has built with us, brick by brick."
Sep 29, 2014 8:57 PM EDT
Rajon Rondo will begin the 14-15 season coming back from a left hand injury, but it will be an important year with free agency looming in July. A veteran of eight seasons, Rondo has assumed a leadership role with the Boston Celtics since the departure of Ray Allen, Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett. He has also developed a good relationship with Brad Stevens, who replaced Doc Rivers before the 2013-14 season.
There have been rumors for more than a year that Rondo’s days with the Celtics are numbered, but on Monday he insisted that he wants to remain with the Celtics over the long-term. He even joked that he hopes to put an end to persistent trade rumors by negotiating a no-trade clause into his next contract, looking over at Danny Ainge with a smirk.
“Yes,” Rondo replied with conviction when asked if he wants to re-sign with the Celtics. “The fans and the people here are the ones that make me want to stay. I can’t say enough about Danny and Wyc [Grousbeck], but when I’m out there on the street the whole community embraces me.”
Rondo could command a max contract as an outright free agent next summer, something he admitted during the team’s annual media day that he believes he deserves. He was the starting point guard for a championship team as a second-year player back in 2008, but he's aware that Ainge is currently working on a rebuild.
“I’m pretty smart, I know this isn’t a championship season,” Rondo said when asked about the team’s short-term chances.
Sep 29, 2014 11:34 AM EDT
Free agent swingman D.J. Stephens has reached an agreement on a training camp deal with the New Orleans Pelicans, leagues sources told RealGM.
A freak athlete who recorded a 46-inch vertical as an NBA draft prospect in 2013, Stephens signed a 10-day contract with the Milwaukee Bucks last season. In three NBA games, Stephens scored seven points and grabbed five rebounds.
Stephens played four seasons at the University of Memphis.
Sep 29, 2014 11:05 AM EDT
Mark Cuban has made a series of comments about Daryl Morey and the Houston Rockets over the past few months, which has finally elicited a response.
Cuban has derided Dwight Howard's decision to sign with the Rockets, while also signing away Gersson Rosas as GM only to have him step down and return to Houston months later. The Mavericks also signed Chandler Parsons to a max contract.
"I think [Cuban's] pissed that we went after Dirk [Nowitzki] in free agency, however unsuccessful it was," Morey told Yahoo Sports.
"We've been pretty good, and I think he's doing a smart thing to take on a rival," Morey told Yahoo Sports late Sunday. "He should want to beat up on San Antonio, too, but it's hard to paint the Spurs that way. So he's directed his bully pulpit onto us. Our owner stays above the fray, so I'm outgunned honestly.
"But let's be clear: If the money's equal between the Rockets and Mavericks, I think players are picking Houston. Every time. For Dwight [Howard], I just don't think it was a hard choice between us and Dallas. If you want to win, you're going to want to join our organization. We have a first-team All-NBA player in his prime [James Harden]. They have an enormously talented superstar [Dirk Nowitzki] but he obviously isn't 24 years old.
"The choice was pretty obvious between the two teams. Dwight is the smart guy in this."
Cuban recently criticized the Rockets for not caring about chemistry.
"I completely reject it," said Morey.
"Our teams have had great chemistry, and it's something we believe in. Hey, if Mark believed so much in chemistry, he wouldn't have busted up a title team for cap room. He's trying to reunite a lot of those people now, bringing back the center [Tyson Chandler] from that title team. Maybe he's got some chemistry religion recently.
"He's tripled his analytics staff. If he's equating analytics with not caring about chemistry, well, he's tripling down on it. I think he's smart to paint a competitor in a negative light, but none of those statements are lining up. He says that we're the team that you sign with and then we will trade you, when that's what he said he would've done with Dwight.
"We don't care about chemistry, but he busted up a championship team for what he hoped cap room could do."
Like the Mavericks, Morey and the Rockets know the value of perception in free agency.
"We're fighting for the hearts and minds of free agents," Morey said.
Sep 29, 2014 8:19 AM EDT
Markieff and Marcus Morris have agreed to contract extensions with the Phoenix Suns, according to sources.
Markieff's deal is worth $32 million over four seasons, while Marcus will earn $20 million over four, according to Paul Coro.
Sep 28, 2014 10:53 PM EDT
Chris Johnson was claimed by the Philadelphia 76ers off free agency waivers, according to sources.
Johnson was recently waived by the Boston Celtics.
Sep 28, 2014 7:00 PM EDT
The New York Knicks and Iman Shumpert's representatives have not had contact about a contract extension, according to sources.
The Knicks have about four weeks to start talks with Shumpert, but they are content to to let him become a restricted free agent next summer.
The Knicks explored trades for Shumpert in the offseason but could not find equal value for their 2011 first round pick.
Sep 28, 2014 2:32 PM EDT
Robert Sarver still regrets the departure of Joe Johnson as a free agent in 2005.
The Phoenix Suns were $833,333 per year apart on an extension before Johnson's last season with the team.
As a free agent, Johnson felt like the Suns tried to lower his value and did not make an offer, prompting him to ask that they not match the Atlanta Hawks' $70 million offer ($20 million more than he had wanted nine months earlier).
"I beat myself up about that one because we were in a position where that piece could have helped us probably extend our chance to run for a longer period of time," Sarver said.
Ricky Rubio and the Timberwolves will have contract talks in person this week that could make him the second-highest paid player on the team.
The Nuggets are actively pursuing free agent forward Alonzo Gee, sources with knowledge told RealGM.
Tim Duncan admitted he had hesitation before opting into his $10.3 player option for the 2014-15 season.
Sep 27, 2014 | Marc Stein/ESPN
The Cavaliers will also send a future second-round pick and create a $5.3 million trade exception in the process.
Rondo's return timetable is six to eight weeks.
Jason Kapono last played in the 2011-12 season for the Lakers.
Christian Watford has agreed on a new training camp contract to re-sign with the Celtics on Monday, league sources told RealGM
The Thunder have reached agreement with Michael Jenkins on a training camp deal, a league source told RealGM.
Aron Baynes has re-signed with the Spurs on a guaranteed, one-year contract, a league source told RealGM.
The Bulls have signed free agent center Solomon Jones to a one-year, veteran-minimum contract, a league source told RealGM.
Trevor Ariza signed a four-year, $32 million deal with the Rockets.
Jason Maxiell averaged 3.2 points and 2.5 rebounds in 34 games last season.
Kemba Walker will enter his fourth NBA season having averaged 17.7 points and 6.1 assists last season.
David Stockton will sign a training camp contract with the Wizards on Friday, a league source told RealGM.
Victor Liz is working to re-sign overseas, meaning no NBA deal with the Mavericks or another organization, sources told RealGM.
Sep 25, 2014 | Marc Stein/ESPN
The Cavaliers have aquired Keith Bogans from the Celtics in exchange for John Lucas III, Erik Murphy, Malcolm Thomas, Dwight Powell and two future second round picks.
Jeffery Taylor is charged with one count of domestic assault, assault and malicious destruction of property.
Willie Reed averaged 14.7 points, 9.9 rebounds and 1.7 blocks in the NBA Development League last season in 49 games with the Springfield Armor and Reno Bighorns.
LeBron James admitted in an interview with Rachel Nichols on CNN's "Unguarded" that he was more likely to stay with the Heat if they had won the 2014 title against the Spurs.
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Lawrence Frank was previously a member of Doc Rivers' coaching staff with the Celtics.
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