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Basketball Wiretap
Basketball news gathered from around the net.

LeBron: Winning Two Titles Has Made Recruiting To Cleveland Easier

LeBron James addressed how he was able to forgive Dan Gilbert and play for the man who excoriated him with a public letter on the Cleveland Cavaliers' team website in 2010.

"As a man, if you got a problem with somebody, you sit down face to face and you talk to them eye to eye. And you hash it out and move on," James said. "So, I think a lot of things that go on in life or in sports with people kind of holding grudges is because they're afraid to actually take a step forward. It's a fine line between pride and progress, and I'm on the progress side. I'm not on the pride side."

James also talked about how he's had a more successful time recruiting players to join him with the Cavaliers than he did in the past.

"I recruited [before] I left here, but I just didn't win nothing so nobody wanted to play with me," James said, pointing out that previously, the lone marquee free agent to come to Cleveland based on his influence was Larry Hughes in 2005. "I recruited. I recruited Michael Redd, I recruited Joe Johnson, I recruited Chris Bosh. I recruited a lot of guys. I just didn't win, and they didn't want to come to Cleveland. So, I guess me winning two championships, it helped out a lot."

Via Dave McMenamin/ESPN

Hawks Quietly Explored Al Horford Trade Last Season

The Atlanta Hawks quietly reached out to a select group of teams last season making Al Horford available, according to sources.

The Hawks were seeking "the right price - including an unprotected 2014 first round pick."

Horford was injured last season, but is healthy again and remains one of the NBA's most productive big men when healthy.

Via Zach Lowe/Grantland

76ers Could Revisit Michael Carter-Williams Trade Talks

The Philadelphia 76ers tried hard to trade Michael Carter-Williams around the time of the 2014 NBA Draft, but sources say the player they sought with an acquired pick was unlikely to be available.

The 76ers are expected to repeat the exercise in trading Carter-Williams as he recovers from offseason surgery.

The 76ers do like Carter-Williams, but point guard is the most replaceable position in today's NBA and they continue to seek additional high-value draft picks.

Via Zach Lowe/Grantland

Mavericks To Sign Yuki Togashi To Non-Guaranteed Deal

The Dallas Mavericks will sign Yuki Togashi after he passes his physical on Tuesday.

Togashi will be eligible to practice with the team, but he is most likely to end up with the Texas Legends in the NBA D-League.

Togashi, a 5-foot-7 guard who played for Dallas in Summer League, is going to sign a non-guaranteed deal.

Via Eddie Sefko/Dallas Morning News

Bucks Expressed Interest In Ray Allen But Were Declined

The Milwaukee Bucks expressed sincere interest in signing Ray Allen in the offseason, but the veteran guard was not inclined to return to his former team.

"We did contact Ray," Kidd said. "He's weighing his options to see where he wants to go. But we did have interest."

Allen played his first 6 1/2 seasons with the Bucks and still has fans in Milwaukee.

"We thought, just like the fans, that it might be a good situation for him to be able to come back and also teach the young guys," Kidd said.

"We thought he would be a good piece for us to try to get but he didn't have any interest."

Via Charles F. Gardner/Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

Ridnour Beginning To Consider End Of Career

Luke Ridnour is beginning to consider when he may retire from the NBA.

"It all goes by so fast," he said of his career, now in its 12th season. "My family is the most important thing. . . . After this [season,] I'll just take it season to season."

Ridnour signed a one-year, $2.75 million deal with the Orlando Magic and the team has an option for 15-16 when he will be 34.

 

Via Brian Schmitz/Orlando Sentinel

Jeff Bower Has Freedom To Pursue Trades As Pistons' GM

Jeff Bower can openly discuss trades with other teams as part of his job duties as general manager of the Detroit Pistons.

Bower consults daily with Stan Van Gundy about ways in which the Pistons can improve their roster.

"That question is asked a lot," Bower said, referring to his trade empowerment. "But no matter what the structure is, the G.M. isn't going to make a trade without his head coach, his understanding of it, his involvement, his buy-in with it, because it won't work without that. In this case, we all have ideas about things. I'll have ideas that I'll take to Stan; Stan will give ideas to me, and scenarios that he'd like to look into. It's a constant exchange, back and forth."

Van Gundy and Bower oversaw the biggest front-office expansion in Pistons history this offseason, with 43 employees in basketball operations, up from 33 last season.

Bower said he and Van Gundy started by identifying the jobs they felt were necessary, then catered the structure to it, "as opposed to working with the flow chart first."

Bower embraced analytics with New Orleans, particularly during his second stint as the team's general manager from 2005-10.

"We really put a lot of weight into measuring things, and into tracking things, and into gauging what we were getting back in return for what we were spending," Bower said. "It's a spotlight is how I look at it. You bring things to the table that have some patterns and traits, that maybe would take longer to identify without the use of numbers. But it has to always be partnered with evaluation and observation."

Via David Mayo/MLive

James Southerland To Be Waived By Blazers, Sign Overseas

The Portland Trail Blazers will waive James Southerland.

Southerland will sign a deal overseas, league sources tell Adrian Wojnarowski.

Southerland spent parts of last season with the then-Charlotte Bobcats and New Orleans Pelicans.

Via Adrian Wojnarowski/Yahoo! Sports

Rubio, Wolves At Standstill On Extension Negotiations

Ricky Rubio is at a standstill in negotiations with the Minnesota Timberwolves regarding a contract extension.

The Timberwolves were recently reported as offering Rubio a new deal in the neighborhood of four years and $48 million.

Rubio has said he hopes to stay with the Timberwolves.

Via Charlie Walters/Pioneer Press

John Holland Close To Signing With Besiktas

John Holland is close to signing with Besiktas of Turkey.

Holland was with the San Antonio Spurs in training camp.

Last season with Gravelines in France, Holland averaged 10.9 points, 3.2 rebounds and 1.3 steals per game.

Via E. Trapani/Sportando

Celtics Could Waive Vitor Faverani As Part Of Roster Crunch

Vitor Faverani is owed $2.09 million this season, but he has yet to recover seven months later from a car accident that led to his arrest.

Cavs Declined Lakers' Interest On Varejao In Gasol Talks Last Season

The Lakers reportedly showed repeated interest in Anderson Varejao while pursuing a trade with the Cavaliers involving Pau Gasol.

Klay Thompson Prefers Security Of Extension Over Waiting For Cap Rise In 2016

Klay Thompson could sign a one-year deal next offseason and become an available free agent in 2016.

Jazz Waive Dee Bost, Kevin Murphy

Quin Snyder and the Jazz have waived guards Dee Bost and Kevin Murphy.

Boris Diaw Has $500,000 In Bonuses For Keeping Weight Off

Boris Diaw has a weight clause in his contract with the Spurs in which he will earn bonuses of as much as $500,000.

Rockets Parting With Robert Covington

The Rockets have decided to release forward Robert Covington while continuing to listen on trade interest, league sources told RealGM.

Chandler Never Thought Carmelo Would Leave Knicks

Tyson Chandler was recently asked if he tried to recruit Carmelo Anthony to the Mavericks.

Stuckey: Pistons' Decline Started By Trading Away Billups

Rodney Stuckey used Chauncey Billups as a mentor while both played with the Pistons.

Danny Ainge Believes Ray Allen Could Wait Until January/All-Star Break To Sign

Danny Ainge is not convinved that Ray Allen will sign with the Cavaliers -- at least not for now.

Pelicans Waive Vernon Macklin

Vernon Macklin most recently played for Liaoning of the Chinese Basketball Association where he averaged 12.9 points and 5.7 rebounds.

Mickael Gelabale Finalizing Deal With Besiktas

Mickael Gelabale is finalizing details with Besiktas on an NBA out.

Michael Beasley To Sign With Shanghai Sharks

Michael Beasley was previously on a camp deal with the Grizzlies.

Nets Unlikely To Partner With Dodgers In Ownership

Mikhail Prokhorov still wants to sell some of his 80 percent stake in the Nets.

LeBron Felt 'Uncomfortable' Being In Same Room As Riley At Wade's Wedding

LeBron James told friends that he felt uncomfortable having to share the room with Pat Riley during Dwyane Wade's wedding over the summer.

Cuban Hopes To Honor Duncan, Nash, Terry If They Plan To Retire After Season

Mark Cuban said he hopes to honor Tim Duncan on March 24, the Spurs' last scheduled trip to Dallas in the regular season, if Duncan states he is retiring.

Warriors, Klay Thompson Apart By $2-3M Per Year In Extension Talks

Klay Thompson is seeking a maximum salary contract -- or close to it -- while the Warriors are hovering around a deal of $13 million per year.

Kings Hire Division III Assistant To Coach D-League Affiliate

The Kings have hired David Arseneault Jr. of Divison III Grinnell (Iowa) College to coach their D-League affiliate.

D.J. Mbenga Signs With Knicks

D.J. Mbenga spent the last two seasons playing overseas in China (2012) and the Philippines (2013) after beginning his professional career in Belgium (2001-04).

Frank Vogel Signs Extension With Pacers

Frank Vogel is entering his fourth full season as head coach of the Pacers.

Kenneth Faried, Nuggets Agree Upon Reworked Four-Year, $50M Extension

The Nuggets and Kenneth Faried pared down an original five-year, $60 million pact.
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