NBA WiretapSeptember 2018 NBA Wiretap

Jimmy Butler Rejects Tom Thibodeau's Pitch On Rejoining Wolves

Sep 25, 2018 9:11 AM

Tom Thibodeau pitched Jimmy Butler on Monday about rejoining the Minnesota Timberwolves. Butler, who has requested a trade, declined the overtures from Thibodeau.

Butler is uninterested in practicing or playing with the Timberwolves again.

Butler plans on leaving the Wolves in free agency in 2019 regardless. But one league source said Thibodeau "isn't giving up."

Tom Thibodeau and GM Scott Layden, who is the point man for trade conversations, continue to leave rival executives and owners unclear on what the Wolves seek in a deal. League sources say Layden is asking for stars, starters, draft picks and cap relief for Butler.

Butler underwent his physical in Minnesota on Monday, missing the team's media day with ownership permission. 

Adrian Wojnarowski/ESPN

Tags: Jimmy Butler, Minnesota Timberwolves, NBA, NBA Trade Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

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Anthony Davis Describes Agent Change As 'Trying To Be Most Dominant Player In NBA'

Sep 25, 2018 9:16 AM

Anthony Davis switched agents this offseason, replacing Thad Foucher with Rich Paul.

Davis told the media the move is about becoming the most dominant player in the league and not about money. Davis will be eligible for a five-year supermax worth $230 million during the 2019 offseason.

"It was for who I am right now in my career and what I'm trying to do," Davis said. "I thought the change was necessary. That's all it was. Just trying to be the most dominant player in the league. I think making that change to Klutch will help me do so."

The future of Davis with the Pelicans has been unclear as they try to build a winner around him.

"I'm here and I'm focused on winning with this squad right here and having a good squad," Davis said. "Just want to go out there and play my hardest."

Andrew Lopez/Times-Picayune

Tags: Anthony Davis, New Orleans Pelicans, NBA, NBA Misc Rumor

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Kings Interested In Facilitating Three-Way Jimmy Butler Trade

Sep 25, 2018 9:28 AM

The Sacramento Kings are interested in helping to facilitate a Jimmy Butler trade.

The Minnesota Timberwolves and whichever team agrees to trade for him will possibly need a third team to take on salary. The Wolves are intent on trading Gorgui Dieng, who has three years and $48 million left on his contract.

The Kings are the only team in the NBA who can absorb the $11 million into cap space while they also possess several expiring contracts such as Zach Randolph, Iman Shumpert and Kosta Koufos.

The Kings are without their first round pick in 2019.

Assistant GM Brandon Williams has informed teams that the Kings aren't adverse to parking contracts that extend into the 2019-20 season.

Adrian Wojnarowski/ESPN

Tags: Jimmy Butler, Minnesota Timberwolves, Sacramento Kings, NBA, NBA Trade Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

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Jalen Rose: Anthony Davis Will Be On Lakers By 19-20 Season

Sep 25, 2018 2:55 PM

Anthony Davis signed with Rich Paul of Klutch Sports and it has ramped up speculation over his future with the New Orleans Pelicans.

Davis will be eligible to sign a supermax contract in 2019 and his willingness to sign that deal or not will be an indicator of how he feels about his future with the Pelicans.

"I am predicting that Anthony Davis ends up in Los Angeles with LeBron James (next season) and they will be another dynamic duo trying to put together a squad to take down, potentially, the Golden State Warriors," said Jalen Rose.

Davis cannot become a free agent until 2020, which means the Lakers would have to trade for him.

Jalen Rose/ESPN

Tags: Anthony Davis, Los Angeles Lakers, New Orleans Pelicans, NBA, NBA Trade Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

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Cavaliers Hopeful Of Signing Larry Nance Jr. To Extension

Sep 25, 2018 5:03 PM

The Cleveland Cavaliers are hopeful of signing Larry Nance Jr. to a long-term contract extension.

The Cavaliers acquired Nance at the 2018 trade deadline from the Los Angeles Lakers.

There is a level of confidence a deal will get done before the October deadline.

Tom Withers/Associated Press

Tags: Larry Nance, Jr., Cleveland Cavaliers, NBA, NBA Trade Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

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Carmelo Anthony Doesn't Rule Out Bench Role With Rockets

Sep 25, 2018 4:59 PM

The Houston Rockets have yet to discuss whether Carmelo Anthony will start or come off the bench, but he sounds more open to the idea than he did with the Oklahoma City Thunder.

"At the end of the day, we're all going to camp to figure out what works in order for this team to try to win a championship," Anthony said at media day Monday. "If that time comes, we'll have that conversation. My goal is to go into training camp, be the best player I can be, be in the best shape I can be and do what I have to do to help this team get over the hump and win a championship. That's all it is.

"All the questions of coming off the bench, I don't want to answer those questions at the end of the day. Whatever I have to do to help this team win a championship, that's what's going to be done."

Mike D'Antoni was noncommittal when asked about Anthony.

"We'll see how it fits," D'Antoni said. "I don't know how they play together, they fit together. We have a great analytics team that will help [in addition to] gut feel. We do a lot of it scientifically, that this is the best way to go."

Tim MacMahon/ESPN

Tags: Carmelo Anthony, Houston Rockets, NBA

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Tilman Fertitta Repeats Warning Of Luxury Tax Concerns For Rockets

Sep 25, 2018 9:37 AM

The Houston Rockets will have a payroll of $143 million this season and will pay in excess of $25 million in luxury taxes. If the Rockets were a repeater team, that would instead cost them $88.8 million.

Tilman Fertitta admitted the tax will impact decision-making. Fertitta bought the Rockets a little over a year ago and is believed to have used his most of his wealth on the acquisition.

"I know we're in it a lot this year," Fertitta said of the tax penalties. "It's a horrible hindrance. It's just brutal. You can take $5 million and look up and it cost you $20 million. At some point, you have to be smart and you can't get in the repeater tax, which happens when you are in the luxury tax three years (of four).

"At some point, you have to do some things so you're never in the repeater tax. It's something you have to be cognizant of. At the same time a team is built on superstars. If you have the top four or five players, you can always see other players move in and out. It is a chess game playing with the luxury tax. This year, in order to get back to the Western Conference Finals, we're going to have to be in it many millions of dollars."

Fertitta said he will pay the luxury tax for a title contender but not a fringe playoff team.

"I am here to win championships," Fertitta said. "I'm not going to let five or 10 or 15 or 20 million dollars make the difference. If you do win the championship, that's easy money back. Now, if we are in the luxury tax every year and barely getting in the playoffs and a first-round game is a struggle, I'm going to find me a new general manager."

Jonathan Feigen/Houston Chronicle

Tags: Houston Rockets, NBA, NBA Misc Rumor

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Kyle Lowry Dodged Calls From Masai Ujiri, Nick Nurse During Offseason

Sep 25, 2018 3:01 PM

Leading to the start of training camp, sources say Kyle Lowry had been dodging calls and texts from team officials such as Masai Ujiri and Nick Nurse. 

Lowry only spoke briefly with Nurse following his elevation to head coach in June.

Lowry also hadn't spoken with Kawhi Leonard until media day on Monday.

“I'm here to do my job,” said Lowry. “One thing about me is I’ve always been prepared to come in and try to win a championship. I’ve always been given an opportunity to go out there and do me, and come back ready to go, in shape, ready to play. My mindset never changes: Come to work for the Toronto Raptors, try to win a gold ball. That’s the same as it’s been since my first year here. That's been my sentiment: Trying to win a gold ball here.”

The Raptors felt Lowry's decision not to comment on their trade of DeMar DeRozan was not a concern as he's never made a habit of speaking to the media during the offseason.

Josh Lewenberg/TSN

Tags: Kyle Lowry, Toronto Raptors, NBA

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Nets Agree To Exhibit 10 Deal With Nuni Omot

Sep 25, 2018 11:26 AM

The Brooklyn Nets have agreed to an Exhibit 10 contract with Nuni Omot.

Omot went undrafted out of Baylor in 2018 and played in Summer League for the Golden State Warriors.

Michael Scotto/The Athletic

Tags: Nuni Omot, Brooklyn Nets, NBA, NBA Signing Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

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Warriors Yet To Set Target Date For DeMarcus Cousins

Sep 25, 2018 9:20 AM

DeMarcus Cousins is rehabbing his Achilles injury and will be re-evaluated in four weeks.

“I’m stubborn as hell,” said Cousins. “I thought I knew that before, but I’m really starting to realize it now. My drive has only increased. I’m seriously like a madman right now.

“I think you guys will see a new DeMarcus on the floor. I can’t wait to get to that point just to show all the work I have put in.”

Cousins was asked what has helped most during his rehab and he replied with an on-brand statement.

“The haters," said Cousins. "That’s all I need. I feed off of it. I love it.”

The Warriors aren't ready to set a target date for his return.

“I know there’s a narrative that we’ll save DeMarcus for the playoffs, and that’s inaccurate,” general manager Bob Myers said. “When he can play, he’ll play. We won’t rush him, but we also won’t hold him back.”

Golden State will play Jordan Bell, Kevon Looney and Damian Jones at center.

Connor Letourneau/San Francisco Chronicle

Tags: DeMarcus Cousins, Golden State Warriors, NBA, NBA Injury

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Pistons Sign Chris McCullough To Camp Deal
Chris McCullough played for the Wizards in the G League last season.

RealGM STaff Report

Hornets Announce Basketball Operations Hires
Nate Mitchell, George Rodman, Matt Carroll, Gary Sacks, Kevin Grevey, Anthony Gacona, Quinton Crawford and Alexander Powell have been hired by the Hornets.

NBA.com

LeBron James: We Got A Long Way To Go To Get To Golden State
The Monday press conference was the first time LeBron James has spoken with the Los Angeles media since signing with the Lakers.

Ohm Youngmisuk/ESPN

Kevin Durant: We'll See What Happens After The Year
Kevin Durant signed a two-year, $61.5 million deal with the Warriors in the offseason instead of a long-term deal.

Mark Medina/San Jose Mercury News

Kawhi Leonard: I Came To Raptors With An Open Mind
Kawhi Leonard said he plans to "play a long, healthy career; be happy wherever I land."

ESPN

Warriors Hire Mike Dunleavy Jr. As Pro Scout
The Warriors have hired Mike Dunleavy Jr. as a pro scout.

RealGM Staff Report

Heat Most Aggressive In Pursuing Trade For Jimmy Butler
The Nets, Pistons, Rockets, Clippers, 76ers, Blazers and Kings are among the teams interested in a deal for Jimmy Butler.

Adrian Wojnarowski/ESPN

Karl-Anthony Towns: Wait On Extension Was About Getting Everything Perfect
Karl-Anthony Towns waited until late September to sign a supermax contract extension with the Wolves.

Jon Krawczynski/The Athletic

Anthony Davis Signs With Rich Paul Of Klutch Sports
Anthony Davis is Klutch Sports' second biggest client behind LeBron James.

Brian Windhorst/ESPN

Dunc'd On: MIA Outlook w/ Albert Nahmad; PHX Outlook w/ Michael Schwartz
Danny Leroux previews the season for the Heat with Albert Nahmad and the Suns with Michael Schwartz.

Joakim Noah, Knicks Moving Towards Buyout Agreement
Several teams are monitoring Joakim Noah's entrance in free agency.

Shams Charania/The Athletic

Wolves Aligning Focus On Trading Jimmy Butler
There have been reports that Tom Thibodeau and Scott Layden had no interest in trading Jimmy Butler.

Shams Charania, Jon Krawczynski/The Athletic

Karl-Anthony Towns Agrees To Five-Year, $190M Supermax Extension With Wolves
Leon Rose informed the Wolves of Karl-Anthony Towns' intention to sign the extension on Saturday night.

Adrian Wojnarowski/ESPN

Jimmy Butler Granted Permission To Skip Wolves' Media Day
Jimmy Butler also will not be available for on-court activities at the start of training camp.

Shams Charania, Jon Krawczynski/The Athletic

Suns Agree To Two-Year, $2.3M Deal With De'Anthony Melton
De'Anthony Melton was the 46th overall pick in the 2018 NBA Draft.

Shams Charania/The Athletic

Wolves Hope To Include Gorgui Dieng In Jimmy Butler Trade
Gorgui Dieng still has $48 million over the next three seasons remaining on his contract.

Zach Lowe/ESPN

Jamal Crawford Continues To Wait For Right Situation
Jamal Crawford remains a free agent and is expected to begin training camp in his native Seattle at the age of 38.

Marc J. Spears/The Undefeated

Kevin Durant To Have Business Show On ESPN+
The show will be hosted by Jay Williams and will delve into topics such as the sneaker business.

Andrew Marchand/New York Post

Adam Silver Encourages Teams To Hire More Women
Adam Silver asked teams to thoroughly review the report that was released earlier this week about the Mavericks.

ESPN

Kyrie Irving Talks Up Celtics' Future, Hasn't Spoken With Jimmy Butler At Length Since 2016
Kyrie Irving will be a free agent in 2019.

Jackie MacMullan/ESPN