NBA WiretapJanuary 2021 NBA Wiretap

Surge Of Traded Picks, Pick Swaps Could Inhibit Market For Next Superstar Trade

Jan 20, 2021 3:07 PM

Currently, 15 NBA teams are either out multiple first round picks, prohibited from trading more, or have their picks "encumbered", which means they can't trade them for multiple years.

In the fall of 2017, there was an item on the league's preseason board of governors meeting agenda that called for a vote on a rule that would ban trading pick swaps to teams that already owed future first-round picks to other teams. A vote was eventually taken off the agenda for the rule. 

In subsequent years, we have witnessed a surge of superstar trades including multiple first round picks and pick swaps.

Seven teams are totally locked out of the draft-pick market this season at the trade deadline with the Washington Wizards effectively making a provisional eighth. 

Because so many teams have a limited ability to trade picks, it could inhibit the market for the next star who wants out.

Brian Windhorst/ESPN

Tags: NBA

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Myles Turner Out With Slight Fracture In Right Hand

Jan 19, 2021 11:21 AM

Myles Turner has suffered a slight fracture in his right hand and will be reevaluated in the coming days.

Turner is averaging a league-high 4.2 blocks per game to go with 12.4 points and 6.8 rebounds.

The Indiana Pacers discussed trading Turner this past offseason, according to reports.

Shams Charania/The Athletic

Tags: Myles Turner, Indiana Pacers, NBA, NBA Injury

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Raptors Waive Alex Len

Jan 19, 2021 3:10 PM

The Toronto Raptors have waived Alex Len.

Len averaged 2.3 points and 1.6 rebounds in 10.8 minutes per game for Toronto.

Len was most recently in the NBA's COVID-19 health and safety protocol.

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Tags: Alex Len, Toronto Raptors, NBA

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Kyrie Irving 'Happy To Be Back', 'Just Needed A Pause'

Jan 19, 2021 2:57 PM

Kyrie Irving rejoined the Brooklyn Nets at practice on Tuesday and spoke with reporters for the first time after two weeks away from the team.

"I'm back, I'm happy to be back," Irving told reporters. "And we got some great pieces and we just move on and I let my actions and my game speak for itself like I planned on doing. Just needed a pause."

Irving said that he "had a lot of family and personal stuff going on. So, just want to leave it at that."

Irving was fined for violating the NBA's health and safety protocols for attending a family birthday party. Irving also lost over $800,000 in salary for the two games he missed while in quarantine.

Irving said he has to make a "separation" between current political and societal events in the United States and playing in the NBA.

"If you don't create that distinction," Irving said, "Then it's easy to feel the weight of the world while you're going out there and playing. So, I'd be lying sitting here and saying I don't feel what's going on in the world, nor am I paying attention to it. I just have a huge responsibility, I feel, to continue to serve my community and the underserved. And when I'm out here playing, it's continuing to leave knowledge with these guys and commit to something, like I always say, bigger than ourselves."

Irving apologized to fans who may have been frustrated or disappointed by his absence, saying that he understood their perspective because "I started off as a fanatic, I've been invested in this organization since I was a kid."

"My commitment has always to bringing something special to Brooklyn," Irving said. "It wasn't just a championship. It was unity, equality, just bigger things than just the game itself. It took quite a while and quite a few valleys to get back home, initially. So for me, I'm just taking every day, just being grateful."

Malika Andrews/ESPN

Tags: Kyrie Irving, Brooklyn Nets, NBA

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Jusuf Nurkic Undergoes Wrist Surgery, To Be Re-Evaluated In Six Weeks

Jan 20, 2021 1:02 AM

Jusuf Nurkic underwent wrist surgery on Tuesday and will be re-evaluated in six weeks.

The news comes on the heels of CJ McCollum's fractured foot, which will keep him out at least four weeks. 

Chris Haynes/Yahoo! Sports

Tags: Jusuf Nurkic, Portland Trail Blazers, NBA, NBA Injury

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Caris LeVert Says Getting Traded 'Possibly Saved Me In The Long Run'

Jan 20, 2021 1:07 AM

Caris LeVert discussed the MRI results that revealed a small mass on his kidney, saying he had no ill symptoms before getting traded to the Indiana Pacers.

“I didn’t have any symptoms. As you know, I was playing in games. I hadn’t missed any games this season yet. I was feeling 100 percent healthy, so in a way this trade definitely showed and revealed what was going on in my body.

“I’m definitely looking at it from that side and definitely humbled to know that this trade could have possibly saved me in the long run," said LeVert on Tuesday.

LeVert is currently out indefinitely.

The Pacers received cash and two second-round picks to finalize the trade. 

Alex Smith/SNY

Tags: Caris LeVert, Indiana Pacers, NBA, NBA Injury

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Rockets Asked 76ers For Ben Simmons, Tyrese Maxey, Three First Round Picks

Jan 19, 2021 10:45 AM

The Houston Rockets asked for Ben Simmons, Tyrese Maxey and three first round picks from the Philadelphia 76ers for James Harden, sources tell Kevin O'Connor of The Ringer.

The 76ers declined and the Rockets traded Harden to the Brooklyn Nets in a package that netted them four first round picks, three picks swaps, cap relief and Victor Oladipo.

If the 76ers eventually decide the Simmons' pairing with Joel Embiid is not maximizing their collective talents, they could attempt to trade for someone like Bradley Beal or Zach LaVine.

Kevin O'Connor/The Ringer

Tags: Ben Simmons, James Harden, Houston Rockets, Philadelphia Sixers, Brooklyn Nets, NBA, NBA Trade Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

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NBA PER (Week 4): Kevin Durant Enters Top-3

Jan 19, 2021 12:42 PM

Nikola Jokic continues to lead the NBA ahead of Chris Boucher, but Kevin Durant has entered the top-3 at 28.2.

NBA PER (Week 4):
1. Nikola Jokic: 31.4
2. Chris Boucher: 29.7
3. Kevin Durant: 28.2
4. Nikola Vucevic: 28.0
5. Joel Embiid: 27.7
6. Karl-Anthony Towns: 27.3
7. Bradley Beal: 27.2
8. Kyrie Irving: 27.1
9. Alec Burks: 27.1
10. Giannis Antetokounmpo: 26.9
11. Michael Porter Jr.: 26.4
12. Luka Doncic: 26.4
13. Kawhi Leonard: 26.2
14. C.J. McCollum: 26.0
15. Enes Kanter: 25.7
16. Anthony Davis: 25. The 7
17. Ja Morant: 24.8
18. Jaylen Brown: 24.7
19. Damian Lillard: 24.3
20. Bam Adebayo: 24.1
21. James Harden: 24.1
22. Paul George: 24.0
23. LeBron James: 23.3
24. Khris Middleton: 23.1
25. Christian Wood

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Tags: NBA, NBA Rankings

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CJ McCollum Started Shooting More Three-Pointers To Extend Career

Jan 19, 2021 4:00 PM

Hours before CJ McCollum fractured his foot, he talked with Michael Pina of Sports Illustrated about the decision he made this offseason to change the way he plays in hopes of extending his career.

McCollum’s three-point rate is 55.0, a whopping 25 points higher than when he was 25 years old.

“I think for the rest of my career I’m gonna shoot a lot of threes and I’m gonna shoot them very accurately,” McCollum said. “I’m also gonna shoot midrange shots, but three points is more than two and if you can shoot them at 44 percent, which is where I’m at, I think you’re in a great spot to get a lot of points per possession and really change how the defense has to guard you.”

The percentage of his shots attempting at the rim was half of what it was last season.

“Why go in there with a 7-footer when I can shoot over a 6' 3" guy or a 6' 4" guy?” McCollum said. “They want you to play in those spaces. I’ve gotta be very strategic about how I use my body. The ground is undefeated.”

Michael Pina/Sports Illustrated

Tags: C.J. McCollum, Portland Trail Blazers, NBA

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TNT's MLK Day Primetime Doubleheader Up 31 Percent Compared To 2020

Jan 19, 2021 3:44 PM

The NBA's primetime doubleheader on TNT was up 31 percent versus last year's comparable Martin Luther King Day coverage.

The Golden State Warriors' win over the Los Angeles Lakers had an 84 percent increase based on an average of 2.2 million viewers.

TNT’s live NBA regular season game coverage is averaging 1.7 million viewers, up 21% vs. the same number of games last year (1.4 million viewers through 12 telecasts).

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NBA Discussing Partnering With Players For COVID-19 Vaccination PSA

Brian Windhorst/ESPN

NBA Tasks Team Security With Preventing Hugs, Handshakes

Adrian Wojnarowski/ESPN

Hollinger & Duncan: Would We Have Done the Harden Trade? What to do with KPJ? What Does a Scouting Database Look Like?

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NBA Postpones Blazers-Grizzlies For Contact Tracing

Adrian Wojnarowski/ESPN

Greg Whittington Out 4-6 Weeks With Knee Surgery

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Lonzo Ball Looking To Return To Pelicans Lineup After Undergoing New Treatment Plan

Andrew Lopez/ESPN

CJ McCollum To Be Re-Evaluated In Four Weeks Due To Hairline Fracture In Left Foot

Chris Haynes/Yahoo! Sports

Nuggets Hope Michael Porter Jr. Could Return On Friday

ESPN

NBA Average Franchise Valuation Down Two Percent Due To Pandemic

Peter J. Schwartz/Sportico

Nets Were Unsuccessful Trying To Trade Landry Shamet For First Round Pick

Brian Windhorst/ESPN

Caris LeVert Likely To Undergo Surgery To Remove Kidney Mass

Dań Dakich/107.5 The Fan (via Tony East/West Indianapolis Community News

76ers Waive Dakota Mathias From Two-Way Contract

Kyle Neubeck/Philly Voice

Kyrie Irving Purchases House For George Floyd's Family

ESPN

Wizards Have Seventh Player Test Positive For COVID-19

Adrian Wojnarowski/ESPN

76ers 'Ultimate Purpose' In James Harden Trade Talks Was To 'Provide Rockets Leverage'

Kelly Iko, Sam Amick/The Athletic

Damian Lillard, Kevin Durant Named NBA's Players Of The Week

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Cavaliers To Trade Or Waive Kevin Porter Jr.

Brian Windhorst/ESPN

Kyrie Irving To Miss Monday's Game Versus Bucks

Adrian Wojnarowksi/ESPN

Dunc'd On: 15 in 60 (Western Conference 1.17.21)

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Rafael Stone: Assets From James Harden Trade Give Rockets 'Flexibility'

Tim MacMahon/ESPN