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Basketball Wiretap
Basketball news gathered from around the net.

McHale: Final Season Of Contract Has 'No Bearing' On Coaching

Kevin McHale is entering the final season of his coaching contract with the Houston Rockets and appears as unaffected by the situation in his last year as he was in his first.

"That has no bearing on me," McHale said. "I never believed that. If you're going to play better in the last year of your contract because it's the last year of your contract, I question who you are. If you are going to coach better because you're in the last year of your contract, I question that guy.

"I'm going to do the same thing I've always done. I'm going to work as hard as I possibly can with these guys, try to get these guys to be the best possible team we can be and you know what, like as a player, you do the best job you can. If it's not good enough, it's not good enough."

McHale is referred to as a "players' coach."

"We're all in this together," McHale said. "The crazy thing about coaching is I've had players say I'm way too hard, I'm way too strict. And then you have guys that say, 'You need to get on that guy.' I always laugh at the guy that says, 'You need to get on that guy more.' I say, 'Do I need to get on you more?' They say, "No.' When you've had 14, 15 guys on the team, and I learned this a long time ago, I'm not going to connect with everyone. But they're going to play the system we're playing. And I'm not playing. I have to give them the ability and the confidence so they can succeed."

The Rockets' other head coaches hired by owner Leslie Alexander, Jeff Van Gundy and Rick Adelman, never received a second contract after completing their four-year term on the Rockets' bench.

Via Jonathan Feigen/Houston Chronicle

Martell Webster To Consider Retirement At 30 After Final Three Years Of Contract

Martell Webster underwent his third back surgery in four years during the offseason and says he intends to retire once the final three years of his contract are up.

“I know this game is probably not going to be the healthiest thing for me if I try to stretch it out as much as a possibly can,” Webster said. “So I intend to really give everything I got for these last three years of my contract and probably walk away from this game so I can be healthy.”

Webster, 27, will be 30 years old when the four-year, $22 million contract he signed with Wizards last summer expires. Webster turned pro after high school so he is already entering his 10th NBA season.

“I’ve always wanted to retire young,” Webster said. “I love this game and I respect this game, but I only want to be in it as long as I can be effective and as long as I can feel comfortable.”

Via Jorge Castillo/Washington Post

DeAndre Jordan Looks For New Deal Next Summer, Not Extension Now

The Los Angeles Clippers understand DeAndre Jordan will be looking for a new deal next summer versus signing a contract extension before the start of the regular season.

"He won’t ever accept an extension," Doc Rivers said. "Why would he?

"Everybody, they get what they earn. That’s basically in life and that will happen for D.J."

Jordan averaged 10.4 points, 13.6 rebounds and 2.48 blocks per game last season.

Via Ben Bolch/Los Angeles Times

Bucks Interested In Negotiating Long-Term Deal For Brandon Knight

The Milwaukee Bucks have valued Brandon Knight and have shown interest in a long-term deal.

"He's a piece we want here," Jason Kidd said. "You talk about his work ethic, the way he approaches the game, he's a professional, on and off the court."

Knight will make $3.75 million this season in the last year of his rookie-scale deal.

Knight is adamant that he considers himself as a point guard, not a combo guard.

"It's my best position," he said. "Point guards have to be able to beat their guy, get in the paint and make the right decision. I can get in the paint at any time.

"So it was just a matter of me making the right decision, whether it be to score the basketball or get guys involved. I know from playing point and being in the NBA the last couple years, that I've improved at the spot. It's not something you just pick up right away."

Via Charles F. Gardner/Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

K.J. McDaniels Agrees Upon One-Year Tender With 76ers As 2nd Round Pick

K.J. McDaniels has agreed upon a one-year, non-guaranteed tender with the Philadelphia 76ers,

McDaniels, who was the 32nd overall pick in the 2014 NBA Draft, could become a restricted free agent next July.

McDaniels’ agent, Mark Bartelstein, wouldn't accept the 76ers’ structure of two guaranteed contract seasons that included two non-guaranteed seasons in years three and four of the deal. The 76ers have had success using these contracts to control young players’ service and flipping the non-guaranteed seasons into valuable trade chips.

Philadelphia would have to guarantee McDaniels $1.2 million next season to simply avoid allowing him become an unrestricted free agent next summer.

"The 76ers have a philosophy that they're adhering to, and we totally respect that, but it doesn't fit for K.J. and us," Bartelstein told Yahoo Sports on Wednesday morning. "I just totally disagree with the idea of doing a four-year deal that includes a structure of two non-guaranteed years. We think K.J. is going to be a good player, and it came down to doing a one-year deal and letting the market determine his value.

"There's no hard feelings. The Sixers’ philosophy has worked for them. It just doesn't work for us."

McDaniels will make $507,000 this season, which is less than his 2nd round peers, but his ability for significant earning power over the next several years is unmatched among second-round picks.

Via Adrian Wojnarowski/Yahoo! Sports

Jimmy Butler, Bulls Moving In Right Direction On Extension Talks

Jimmy Butler's representatives and the Chicago Bulls have started discussions on a possible contract extension.

"I want to be here," Butler said. "I think the Bulls want me here. So however long it takes, as long as we get it worked out. Basketball is my main focus, not really the contract situation."

Butler would become a restricted free agent next offseason if a new deal is not reached.

"They definitely are [working on it]," he said. "I think we're really good right now, moving in the right direction. But that's between them. I just got to be with my teammates and whatever I do between myself and that basket will handle that a lot easier.

"I don't really think about it too much," he said. "I grew up without money. I think I'll be all right for a couple more days. I just play basketball. That's what I know. And if you play basketball the right way, the contract situation will handle itself."

Via Nick Friedell/ESPN

Blazers Exercise Fourth-Year Option On Damian Lillard

The Portland Trail Blazers exercised their fourth-year option on the contract of guard Damian Lillard.

In two seasons, Lillard has averaged 19.9 points (42.7% FG, 38.1% 3-PT, 85.9% FT), 3.3 rebounds, 6.0 assists, 0.84 steals and 37.2 minutes per game. Only four players in NBA history have more points (3,257) and assists (988) in their first two seasons (O. Robertson, T. Archibald, A Iverson, L. James). Lillard’s 403 3-pointers through his first two seasons are the most in league history. He’s tied for eighth on Portland’s all-time list for 3-pointers (403). Lillard set a franchise record last season for the most 3-pointers made in a single season (218).

Via RealGM Staff Report

76ers Waive Pierre Jackson

The Philadelphia 76ers have waived Pierre Jackson.

Mark Deeks writes that Jackson will receive a guaranteed $400,00 from the 76ers for this season while he rehabs from an Achilles tear that occured during Summer League.

Via Marc Stein/ESPN

LeBron Was Disappointed By Miami's Decision To Amnesty Mike Miller

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."

Via Ira Winderman/Sun Sentinel

Alonzo Gee Reaches Deal With Nuggets

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.

Via Shams Charania/RealGM

Thunder Look Forward For Opportunity To Re-Sign Kevin Durant In 2016

Kevin Durant made it clear that he is pleased with the Thunder's direction and likes his situation.

Rondo Wants To Stay With Celtics, Realistic About Short-Term Prognosis

Rajon Rondo could command a max contract as an outright free agent next summer, something he admitted during the teamís annual media day that he believes he deserves.

D.J. Stephens To Sign Camp Contract With Pelicans

D.J. Stephens has reached an agreement on a training camp deal with the Pelicans, leagues sources told RealGM.

Morey Responds To Criticism From Cuban

Mark Cuban recently criticized Daryl Morey and the Rockets for not caring about chemistry.

Markieff, Marcus Morris Agree Upon Four-Year Extensions With Suns

Markieff Morris' deal is worth $32 million over four seasons, while Marcus Morris will earn $20 million over four.

Chris Johnson Claimed By 76ers Off Waivers

Chris Johnson was recently waived by the Celtics.

Sources: Knicks Not Discussing Extension With Shumpert

The Knicks have about four weeks to start talks with Iman Shumpert.

Robert Sarver Still Regrets Allowing Joe Johnson To Leave Suns

The Suns were $833,333 per year apart on an extension before Joe Johnson's last season with the team.

Ricky Rubio, Wolves Continuing Extension Talks On Possible $11M Annually

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.

Nuggets Pursuing Alonzo Gee

The Nuggets are actively pursuing free agent forward Alonzo Gee, sources with knowledge told RealGM.

Tim Duncan Hesitated Before Accepting $10.3M Player Option

Tim Duncan admitted he had hesitation before opting into his $10.3 player option for the 2014-15 season.

Cavaliers Trade Keith Bogans To 76ers

The Cavaliers will also send a future second-round pick and create a $5.3 million trade exception in the process.

Rajon Rondo Out 6-8 Weeks After Surgery On Broken Hand

Rondo's return timetable is six to eight weeks.

Jason Kapono Agrees To Camp Deal With Warriors

Jason Kapono last played in the 2011-12 season for the Lakers.

Christian Watford To Re-Sign With Celtics After Release

Christian Watford has agreed on a new training camp contract to re-sign with the Celtics on Monday, league sources told RealGM

Thunder To Sign Michael Jenkins To Training Camp Deal

The Thunder have reached agreement with Michael Jenkins on a training camp deal, a league source told RealGM.

Aron Baynes Re-Signs With Spurs On Guaranteed One-Year Deal

Aron Baynes has re-signed with the Spurs on a guaranteed, one-year contract, a league source told RealGM.

Bulls Sign Solomon Jones To One-Year, Vet Minimum Deal

The Bulls have signed free agent center Solomon Jones to a one-year, veteran-minimum contract, a league source told RealGM.

Gortat Believes Ariza Left Wizards To Return West, Not For More Money

Trevor Ariza signed a four-year, $32 million deal with the Rockets.

Jason Maxiell To Sign Non-Guaranteed Deal With Hornets

Jason Maxiell averaged 3.2 points and 2.5 rebounds in 34 games last season.
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