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Basketball news gathered from around the net.

McGary Encouraged By Fit With Thunder

Mitch McGary sees being drafted by the Oklahoma City Thunder as a strong positive despite falling to the 21st overall pick.

McGary should immediately see quality minutes on a title contender.

“This is the fit for me and I’m happy overall with where I ended up,” McGary said. “Hopefully we have a bunch of veteran big guys that I learn from, Nick Collison, Kendrick Perkins, Serge [Ibaka] and even [second-year center] Steven [Adams]. He taught me how to play defense against [Brooklyn’s] Mason Plumlee [in the summer league.] It helped out.”

Via Gary Washburn/Boston Globe

Falk: Trading Turner Wasn't Blockbuster For 76ers

Evan Turner's agent, David Falk, believes the Philadelphia 76ers didn't make an expecially strong trade in dealing his client to the Indiana Pacers.

“I don’t think it’s about expectations,” Falk said. “I think he and Jrue Holiday were terrific together. And we had asked Philadelphia his entire fourth year, repeatedly, we urged him to please not trade [Turner]. He was really having fun. He was very productive playing for Brett Brown. and it’s not like they got a lot for the trade [to Indiana].

“They got a second-round pick for he and Lavoy Allen, and had to pay off many millions of dollars to Danny Granger to make the deal. I don’t think it was exactly a blockbuster deal for Philly. The situation could have been better.”

Turner signed with the Boston Celtics this offseason.

Via Gary Washburn/Boston Globe

Jazz See Dante Exum Playing In World Cup As Development Opportunity

Dante Exum should get a lot of minutes for Australia in the World Cup of Basketball next month.

The Utah Jazz see the tournament as a great opportunity for their first round pick.

"We’ve had a lot of players ... that have used the national team to help develop their game as young players," Dennis Lindsey said. "We think this is ideal for Dante, who hasn’t had a lot of experience playing against men and certainly men that are much older and much more experienced. We think the national team during the early portion of his career will be very critical to his development."

Lindsey added, "The Australian Basketball Federation is excellent, very well coached. We’re really looking forward to him learning. We see this as a real win."

Via Aaron Falk/Salt Lake Tribune

Saunders Increasingly Interested In Trading For Wiggins, Bennett

Flip Saunders is becoming increasingly interested in the Cleveland Cavaliers' offer of Andrew Wiggins, Anthony Bennett and future first round picks for Kevin Love.

Saunders was long believed to prefer a trade with the Golden State Warriors to acquire Klay Thompson for the Minnesota Timberwolves, but he was never reportedly offered.

Saunders is president of the Wolves and also the head coach, so he was unlikely to want an extended rebuild.

‘‘It gives [Saunders] a chance to mold the team how he wants it,’’ the source said.

Via Joe Cowley/Chicago Sun-Times

Lakers Pencil In Carlos Boozer As Starting Small Forward

Carlos Boozer was introduced by the Los Angeles Lakers on Friday.

The Lakers were not optimistic about landing Boozer during the waiver claim process but did so with a $3.25 million bid.

Boozer heard the news from his agent.

"I was ecstatic and I was jumping up and down," Boozer said. "I went back out there and got two more hours in."

Boozer is penciled in as the Lakers' starting small forward, although he has played power forward throughout his 12-year NBA career.

Boozer said he believes he could play up to seven more seasons.

Via Mike Bresnahan/Los Angeles Times

Carmelo Struggled To Choose Between Knicks, Bulls

Carmelo Anthony ultimately decided between the New York Knicks and Chicago Bulls. Anthony added that he believes the Knicks aren't too far away from becoming a contender.

"I want to win. I don't care about the money," Anthony told ESPN.com. "I believe Phil (Jackson) will do what he has to do to take care of that."

"I don't think we're that far away," he added. "People use 'rebuilding' too loosely."

Anthony signed a five-year, $124 million deal to remain with the Knicks.

"It was overwhelming," Anthony said. "It was stressful in the final days, one of the hardest decisions I've ever had to make."

Anthony said, though, it ultimately came down to New York and Chicago.

"I was flip-flopping," he admitted. "It was hard. It was Chicago, but then after I met with L.A., it was L.A. But it came back to Chicago -- and was pretty much always Chicago or New York. That's a situation where I could have walked in now to an opportunity to compete for the next however many years."

Via Jeff Goodman/ESPN

Parsons Left Rockets In Part For Bigger Role

Chandler Parsons may have been motivated to leave the Houston Rockets for a bigger role.

James Harden believes the Rockets won't take a step back despite losing Parsons to the Dallas Mavericks in the offseason.

"Dwight and I are the cornerstones of the Rockets," Harden said while appearing at a charity event in the Philippines, according to The Philippine Star. "The rest of the guys are role players or pieces that complete our team. We've lost some pieces and added some pieces.

"I think we'll be fine next season."

Parsons averaged 16.6 points, 5.5 rebounds and 4.0 assists per game last season.

"That's a pretty ridiculous statement if he meant that," Parsons said. "That's part of the reason I wanted to go to Dallas, because I'm ready for that next step. I'm ready for a bigger role, and I'm ready for more leadership.

"If anybody should understand that, it's James, because he was in the same situation in Oklahoma City and then he got his chance to come to Houston and shine. I'm not real sure what that means."

Via Tim MacMahon/ESPN

Dwight Howard: Chandler Parsons' Departure Won't Affect Rockets At All

Dwight Howard believes that Chandler Parsons' departure from the Houston Rockets will not have a major impact on the team next season.

"It won't affect us at all," Howard said. "We have myself and James. We have the best center and the best two guard in the game on the same team. It's on us."

Parsons spent three years as the Rockets' starter at small forward. He signed a three-year, $46 million deal with the Dallas Mavericks.

Howard praised the Rockets' addition of Trevor Ariza.

"He'll go through a wall for you," Howard said of Ariza, who was his teammate on the Orlando Magic. "Just to have soldiers on your team like that is great. We have that one-two punch with me and James. We're filling out our roster with guys who are willing to go through that wall and doing whatever it takes to win."

Via Associated Press

Jackson Believes Bargnani Will Bring Value In Knicks' New System

While Phil Jackson attempted to trade Andrea Bargnani this offseason, he believes he can have value on the floor this season for the New York Knicks.

"He's overlooked. We think he's going to really do well in the system we have," Jackson said of Bargnani. "We have a couple of guards he likes to play with, Jose (Calderon) and Pablo (Prigioni), and I think he's going to be a surprise and a pleasant one for our fans."

The Knicks traded for Bargnani from the Toronto Raptors last offseason.

Via Peter Botte/New York Daily News

Rival Execs Split On Whether Cavs Should Trade Wiggins For Love

Jeff Goodman polled 12 NBA executives about whether the Cleveland Cavaliers should offer Andrew Wiggins for Kevin Love. The results were 7-5 in favor of the Cavaliers keeping Wiggins.

"Love is so overrated. He's never won," one NBA executive said. "I'd wait if I was Cleveland. I wouldn't involve Wiggins in a trade for Love."

"Wiggins is going to be really good in time," added an NBA general manager. "Right now he can shoot and defend. Playing off LeBron and Kyrie [Irving] will take a lot of the pressure off him in the present. He could become a go-to scorer in a few years."

"Star potential on rookie scale deal for four years," another GM added.

The personnel in favor of the Cavaliers trading for Love expressed how they could become instant title contenders with Love instead of Wiggins.

"Why wait on Wiggins when Love makes them better now," one assistant GM said. "And if you don't get Love now, he's going to be a Laker next summer."

"I know what Love can do. He's a proven commodity, plus his game meshes with LeBron's," one NBA scout said.

Via Jeff Goodman/ESPN

Curry: Warriors Have Become 'Enticing' Destination

Stephen Curry sees the Warriors' involvement in discussions for Kevin Love and as a possibility for LeBron James as a symbol of how the franchise has come over the past few years.

Hinkie Saw Opportunity To Draft Embiid As Soon As Injury News Surfaced

The 76ers would have likely drafted Andrew Wiggins had Joel Embiid not suffered a foot injury that will require surgery.
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