Since Dave, Ben and others will supply you with ample news about the Blazers today (Casey's live video chat with a ton of players alone provides for more than one post) and the junk drawer is really more like the financial news today, I thought it would be nice to give you some tidbits from events held by the other NBA teams in one place.
Here are a few in no particular order:
- Bulls: Ben Gordon will be in training camp and is rumored to finally accept the qualifying offer, in order to become an unrestricted free agent next season (sources: Chicagotribune, Rumorpress.net). A little surprising, he would be only the fifth player since 2000 to do that (after Melvin Ely, Mickael Pietrus, Vladimir Radmanovic, Stromile Swift) since it’s risky to not take the guaranteed years, and in fact all guys who did it before him ended up losing money. But he certainly is the most prominent guy to try it. (source: ShamSports.com)
- Timberwolves: They will not sign Shaun Livingston according to GM Kevin McHale. Instead he is supposed to be heading to Miami (but Miami isn't reporting about this), and the Wolves will go with veteran Kevin Ollie. (source: Star Tribune via Canis Hoopus)
- Heat: Their GM Randy Pfund apparently didn't want to wait for Livingston, Marbury or whoever PG will end up there to help D-Wade turn it around and resigned today (not re-signed) according to NBA.com. ESPN confirms and adds that (team president, but no longer coach) Pat Riley will take over his responsibilities. Heat update: Riley says that they don't want to go over the luxury tax (they are about $400,000 shy) and that the roster is full at the moment, leaving no room for signing Livingston. Backup point guard Jason Richards is out for the season, but he has a guaranteed contract.
- Pacers: Coach Jim O'Brien expects them to make the playoffs this year and says he wouldn't be there if he didn't. Somehow, I don't share that feeling (sorry Jarret Jack). Also, no contract extension is worked out yet with Danny Granger. And please ignore the grumpy point guard in the corner, since no team is interested in trading for Jamaal Tinsley so far but Indiana wants him gone (removed the nameplate on his locker) but doesn't want to waive him. (source: Indystar.com, Indycornrows.com)
- Jazz: Picked up the 2009-10 option on Ronnie Brewer. Matt Harpring is not in camp, still battling the aftermath of an ankle surgery + staph infection. (source: Salt Lake Tribune)
- Knicks: The Marbury saga continues. GM Walsh had cancerous tissue on his tongue removed over the summer, but is supposed to be fine now and kicked a 50 year smoking habit. Draft pick Danilo Gallinari has serious back painand might miss pre-season. And - surprise, surprise, Eddie Curry didn't show up in shape for training camp, even choosing to wear baggy clothes for media day. D'Antoni was praising some of his young players instead. (sources: Bergen Record, ESPN, and Posting and Toasting - a blog which you can't join if you are Larry Brown :-))
- Thunder: New jerseys were revealed, one is white, the other sky blue. Look them up on nba.com/thunder or in the fanshots below. Nothing major on the basketball operations side to report.
- Wizards: Still injured Gilbert Arenas is the new inofficial head cheerleader and assistant coach for the younger players. Head coach Jordan want to turn PF/C Andray Blatche into a defensive stopper against tall and strong small forwards like LeBron and McGrady. I like the guy a lot, but that sounds like a stretch. (source: Washington Times via Bulletsforever)
- Kings: Francisco Garcia got a 5 year $30 million extension. He is 27. Now the debate is on if this is too much money. (sources: ShamSports, Tom Ziller)
- Rockets: Last year's short-term Blazer Von Wafer is now on Houston's roster. No word yet if it's a guaranteed deal, probably not. Remember that everybody says they will be a force in the West if they can stay healthy? Well, I wouldn't bet on it that they can. McGrady said today he has problems with an arthritic left shoulder, probably needing surgery after the season, and his left knee is also not back to normal. Yao Ming isn't back to 100 percent yet after playing in the Olympics with a not yet fully healed foot, and Shane Battier also has foot problems. (sources: NBA.com transaction wire, ESPN/AP)
- Update: Celtics: "Perhaps the most important point for me was [head coach Doc Rivers] telling me that Darius Miles was 100%. He had been working out for two weeks with no limitations and I reinforced my concern, quoting the Portland report that he could not participate on back to back days, which Doc assured me has not been the case." CelticsBlog.com
- Suns: Nothing serious to report. For some funny (weird?) pics, see this cross-reference to my FanShot.