Archive for the ‘2011 Free Agency’ Category

In this time of great upheaval, we are seeing so many players switch teams — and not switch teams, what up Chris Paul and Dwight Howard? — that it’s kind of hard to keep track of what’s happening. You go to sleep thinking now is a good time to rest and that you won’t miss anything, then you wake up and Rudy Fernandez is a Nugget. It’s a little overwhelming, even if it’s your job to sit in front of a computer looking at basketball stuff.

With all that movement comes some hilarious pairings, like Vince Carter joining the defending NBA champions to chase a ring or Tayshaun Prince deciding he’s done trying to win anything of substance. But the best of those awkward unities is Keyon Dooling joining Ray Allen, who threw down pretty hard back in 2006. But now that they’re older — and the Sonics don’t exist — it’s water under the court. Here’s Jessica Camerato from CSNNE:

“The Sonics? Is that even a team anymore?” Dooling responded. “So that’s ancient history. I mean, at the end of the day when Ray and I saw each other the next time after the fight, we had a conversation and we embraced each other. At the end of the day, it was the heat of the battle and I have a lot more respect for him. I know he has a lot more respect for me. Sometimes you know a man better when you fight.”

Dag. Sorry, Sonics fans. It’s been three years since there was a team in Seattle and people are Keyon Dooling still uses them as a punch line. Can’t catch a break.

But Keyon Dooling is right. A little fighting can teach you a lot about someone. That’s pretty much what the entirety of “Fight Club” is about and there’s a reason it’s every 16-year-old’s favorite movie. And hey, NFL coaches love when their players fight in training camps because it brings the teams closer. Keyon Dooling is on to something. Maybe him and Ray Allen fighting 19 million blog years ago will be enough to make them a formidable backcourt duo when Rajon Rondo needs a breather. Stranger things have happened.

Plus, even though Keyon Dooling was the one with the mic in his face, he didn’t use the opportunity to rub his victory in Ray’s face. In fact, he played things pretty cool.

“Nobody wins in a basketball fight,” Dooling said. “The NBA won. They got all the fine money. They always win, right?”

Yes, they do, Keyon Dooling. Yes, they do.

It appears that the NBA has shot its crazy wad on the transactions front because today was actually a disappointingly boring day. We’re all still waiting to see where Nene, Gilbert Arenas, Rip Hamilton and Jamal Crawford will end up, but these measly moves were all we were given to feed on today.

Kwame Brown signs one-year, $7 million deal with Warriors
The players union had to know that this was what would happen when they managed to work a salary cap floor into the new Collective Bargaining Agreement. Kwame does have some usefulness as a defender and rebounder, but I would be remiss if I didn’t include this video in a post about a Kwame Brown signing.

Lakers sign Josh McRoberts and Gerald Green
McRoberts has turned into a pretty good NBA player, especially considering that he was drafted in the second round.  He hustles, rebounds and has some shooting range. As for Gerald “Nine Fingers” Green, I’ll never forget how many Raptors fans freaked out when the Raptors passed on him not once (for Charlie Villanueva) but twice (for Joey Graham) in the 2005 draft. Of course, Andrew Bynum and Danny Granger were the guys the Raptors really should have selected with those picks, but if you were a Raptors fan on the Internet at that time, you might have believed that Toronto had passed on the next Kobe.

Marco Belinelli signs $3.4 million qualifying offer with Hornets
Considering the state of the franchise, I think we can all safely assume this was a financial decision.

Chauncey Billups, by all accounts, is a pretty decent fellow. He might hoist up a few too many unsolicited 3-balls, but you know the saying, when in New York…

I open with that thought because he came off like a pretty big dolt recently when he warned the league that he wanted to pick his next team, and that no one should bother bidding on his services. He had just been amnestied — joining the likes of Gilbert Arenas and Charlie Bell — so, I can understand his frustration. But now he has a golden opportunity that he should be itching to take: the Los Angeles Clippers have won the auction for his services.

Yes, the Clippers are a golden opportunity. Sure, it may have been nice for Chauncey to hand the ball to the likes of Dwyane Wade and register an assist he probably didn’t deserve — as he would if he could join the Miami Heat — but the Clippers are honestly something quite unique. And not in the old Clipper way.

It starts, obviously, with Blake Griffin. This summer, he kept tabs on his teammates and even hosted a week long camp for them in Los Angeles. Yes, the Clippers were putting in extra work. I know, these tales are what sports movies are made of, but can anyone possibly question anything Blake Griffin does? He came in to the league last season and made the All-Star team, went for 22, 12 and 4, was second in total free throws attempted, fifth in total minutes played, and sixth in total rebound percentage. Rookies don’t do those things, Hall of Famers do.

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Welcome to Day Two of our running log of the signings and trades taking place around the league in this crazy, compressed NBA off-season. We’ll start off by catching up on the transactions that broke over the weekend and this morning, and we’ll continue to keep you up-to-date throughout the day. Follow the Twitter feeds of TreySkeetsTas and myself for breaking news and for the latest update of this post.

6pm ET Update

Chauncey Billups is claimed by Clippers off amnesty waivers
Yes! Oh, this fills my heart with glee. Now, we’ll see if Chauncey is really going to retire like he threatened to if he didn’t get to hand-choose his team. If he reports but doesn’t give his full effort, maybe Donald Sterling will heckle him like he did with Baron Davis. Good times!

Celtics sign Chris Wilcox
I missed this Saturday signing in the previous update, but this is worth mentioning because Wilcox is a quality backup big who grabs rebounds and converts his scoring opportunities (.581 FG% last season). Between Brandon Bass and Wilcox, Danny Ainge has done a good job of bolstering the Celtics’ frontcourt.

Bulls re-sign Brian Scalabrine
Inexplicably, NBA teams keep offering this guy a roster spot. Maybe he keeps locker rooms loose with his freestyle rap skills.

3pm ET Update

Chris Paul trade talks between the Hornets and Clippers have been cut off
It would appear that Hornets GM Dell Demps’ insistence on Eric Gordon being included in the deal is the sticking point here. Does this mean the Celtics might re-enter these sweepstakes even though Paul has indicated he won’t sign an extension with them? Rajon Rondo might be the best player the Hornets can acquire in a potential trade.

Bulls close to signing Derrick Rose to five-year, $94 million extension
For the youngest MVP award winner in NBA history, this is a no-brainer. This extension should keep Rose in a Bulls uniform through the 2016-17 season, when he’ll still be just 28 years old.

Pacers waive James Posey using amnesty rule
Shockingly, Posey’s expiring contract will pay him $6.9 million this season. His shooting has declined sharply over the past few seasons and he sported a gruesome .336 field goal percentage (primarily because 88 percent of his shot attempts were three-pointers) in 836 minutes last season. Posey might get veteran’s minimum interest from a team like Heat, but I wouldn’t be shocked if this was the end of the road for him.

Raptors sign Anthony Carter
Bryan Colangelo’s strategy appears to be to fill his roster with cagey veterans who can mentor his young prospects without derailing the team’s obvious tank job.

After the jump, all the moves you might have missed from this morning and the weekend…

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There are only three things in this life that are certain — death, taxes and Juwan Howard being a professional basketball player. Same as it ever was. Same as it ever was.

And remember, chill out.

“I am the hockey player of this team,” Magloire said. “I am the one that is gritty, will work hard and do whatever it takes to get wins at the end of the day.”Jamaal Magloire, the first Canadian Toronto Raptor

Hello, NBA fans! This will be a running log of the signings and trades taking place around the league now that these transactions can start being made official today. We’re going to lose our minds keeping track of this stuff throughout the day so that you don’t have to. You can check back with this post every half hour or so to see what’s crackin’, or you can stay informed through the Twitter feeds of chill bros like Trey, Skeets, Tas and myself — who you are undoubtedly already following as a discerning NBA aficionado.

6pm ET Update

76ers re-sign Thaddeus Young to five-year, $42 million deal
That’s a bit rich for my taste. Young is a productive, efficient scorer but he’s no great shakes as a rebounder or defender and he only started one game for the Sixers last night. Perhaps this deal is a sign they intend to move him into the starting lineup.

Pistons waive Richard Hamilton
This is not an amnesty waive, but a buy-out. A rejuvenated Rip Hamilton could be a very nice addition to a contending team. He’d be a great fit on the Bulls.

5pm ET Update

The Nets have offered Nenê a four-year deal worth $60-65 million
I guess this is the Nets’ “Dwight Howard backup plan”. The Nuggets can offer Nenê a fifth year, so I assume they’ll continue to be in the lead in this hunt.

Gary Forbes signs two-year deal with Raptors, with team option for third year
The Raptors add some more wing depth with the signing of the undrafted 26-year-old. Forbes is a streaky gunner who can put up a bunch of points but can also shoot his way off the court. Figures haven’t been announced, but we can safely assume the deal will be for close to the minimum.

4pm ET Update

Juwan Howard re-signs with Heat
Things are slowing down, as this was the only tidbit that leaked out in the last hour. Juwan is 38 years old and has already made $150 million in his career. He must really love this game, and he must really want a ring.

3pm ET Update

Magic waive Gilbert Arenas via amnesty rule
Sometimes news can be shocking even when it’s sort of expected. Sure, everybody knew this would be a good idea, but it’s not our $62 million he’ll be paid over his next three seasons. The bidding process on Arenas will have NBA fans sitting on the edge of their seats. Where do you see him ending up? I’ll just throw this team out there: Chicago.

Confirmed: Brandon Roy will retire
Trey posted about this earlier, but Ken Berger from CBS has confirmed it. This is a colossal bummer and a derailing of a probably Hall of Fame career.

Kings re-sign Marcus Thornton to five-year, $40 million deal
This might seem like a lot of money, but Thornton quietly had a monster third of a season after he was traded to the Kings in February: 21.3 PPG, 4.7 RPG, 3.4 APG and 1.7 SPG. Not too shabby for a guy drafted 43rd overall in the 2009 draft. Sacramento certainly has a lot of intriguing parts, now let’s see how they mesh.

Kings sign Chuck Hayes to four-year $21 million deal
That’s quite an eclectic group of big men the Kings have accumulated. Hayes is an excellent post defender, a fantastic offensive rebounder, and he’s not nearly as terrible a free throw shooter as he used to be. Solid pickup for Sac-town.

Catch up on the moves and shakes from earlier today, after the jump…

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