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  • Raptors land Leonard from Spurs for DeRozan
    By Field Level Media / Wednesday, July 18, 2018

    San Antonio agreed to ship Kawhi Leonard and Danny Green to the Toronto Raptors for DeMar DeRozan, Jakob Poeltl and a protected 2019 first-round pick, according to multiple reports, ending more than seven months of off-court drama for the Spurs.

    • Leonard requested a trade after a meeting with Spurs coach Gregg Popovich. His absence from the team became a point of consternation for Popovich and the Spurs, who didn't have the All-Star forward on the floor for the final five months of the season because of a quadriceps injury.

      The Los Angeles Lakers, Boston Celtics, Cleveland Cavaliers, Philadelphia 76ers and others checked on Leonard's availability before Wednesday's trade in which the Spurs were able to acquire another All-Star in DeRozan.

      The Raptors are rolling the dice Leonard is healthy and willing to re-sign to stay in Toronto beyond this season. Leonard is scheduled to be an unrestricted free agent in July 2019. By playing this season with Toronto, the Raptors would have the advantage of being able to pay $49 million more in a max deal than other suitors, such as the Lakers.

      Los Angeles and other teams with cap space could offer four years at $141 million; Toronto can reach five years, $190 million.

      DeRozan's immediate reaction -- after reportedly being informed during a meeting with team brass at Vegas Summer League he would not be traded -- was not positive.

      On his Instagram page Wednesday morning, DeRozan wrote, "Be told one thing & the outcome another. Can't trust em. Ain't no loyalty in this game. Sell you out quick for a little bit of nothing... Soon you'll understand... Don't disturb..."

      According to multiple reports, the first-rounder is protected if the Raptors pick anywhere from first to 20th next year. In 2020, the pick would become two second-round picks instead of a first-rounder.

      DeRozan has three years, $83 million remaining on his contract.

      --Field Level Media

  • Pelicans sign former Xavier G Bluiett to 2-way contract
    By Field Level Media / Wednesday, July 18, 2018

    The New Orleans Pelicans signed guard Trevon Bluiett to a two-way contract, the team announced Tuesday.

    • Per the two-way deal, the former Xavier Musketeers star will play primarily in the G League, but he is allowed to be moved up to the Pelicans' NBA squad for up to 45 days.

      Bluiett, 23, went undrafted last month but impressed by averaging 18.3 points per game at the NBA Summer League in Las Vegas. He broke out immediately by scoring 50 points combined over his first two summer league games, knocking down six 3-pointers in a win over the Miami Heat.

      The 6-foot-5 Bluiett averaged double figures in scoring for all four seasons while at Xavier, increasing his scoring average in every season -- from 11.1 points per game as a freshman in 2014-15 to 19.3 last season.

      --Field Level Media

  • NBA transactions: Veteran Lopez officially signs with Bucks
    By Field Level Media / Tuesday, July 17, 2018

    Veteran center Brook Lopez officially signed his one-year contract with the Milwaukee Bucks on Tuesday.

    • Lopez's deal is reportedly for $3.4 million deal via the biannual exception.

      The 30-year-old Lopez averaged 13.0 points and 4.0 rebounds per game in 74 contests with the Los Angeles Lakers last season. He is expected to step in as the starting center for the Bucks, who won 44 games a season ago before losing to the Boston Celtics in seven games in the first round of the playoffs.

      In 10 career seasons with the New Jersey/Brooklyn Nets and the Lakers, Lopez has averaged 17.9 points and 6.8 rebounds per game. The 7-footer matched a career low in scoring and set a career low in minutes per game (23.4) last season, which marked his first in the Western Conference.

      --The Brooklyn Nets announced the signing of free agent guard Shabazz Napier.

      Napier, 27, reportedly inked a two-year deal with the Nets. The second year of the contract is a team option.

      Napier spent the last two seasons with the Portland Trail Blazers, posting career highs almost across the board last year. He averaged 8.7 points, 2.0 assists, 2.3 rebounds and 1.1 steals in 20.7 minutes per game across 74 appearances, including 10 starts. He also boosted his 3-point accuracy (37.6 percent), bringing his career average to 36.3 percent.

      --After the Cleveland Cavaliers reportedly picked up the 2018-19 contract option for Kendrick Perkins in late June, the team officially waived the veteran center.

      According to the Cleveland Plain Dealer last month, Perkins' non-guaranteed option was worth $2.4 million, while ESPN placed the value at $2.5 million. Perkins, 33, briefly appeared in the regular-season finale for Cleveland this year but never saw action in the postseason.

      Perkins played eight seasons for the Boston Celtics (2003-11), then five seasons for the Oklahoma City Thunder (2011-15). He appeared in 17 games for Cleveland in 2014-15, then spent the following year as a reserve with the New Orleans Pelicans. In 782 career NBA games, including 565 starts, Perkins is averaging 5.4 points, 5.8 rebounds and 1.2 blocked shots.

      --The Denver Nuggets waived reserve point guard Isaiah Whitehead after his Friday trade from the Brooklyn Nets.

      Forwards Kenneth Faried and Darrell Arthur, a protected 2019 first-round pick and a 2020 second-rounder were packaged in a salary dump by the Nuggets in a deal with the Nets. According to the Denver Post, the move helps the Nuggets, who signed point guard Isaiah Thomas to a one-year deal on Monday, get under the luxury tax.

      Whitehead, 23, played just 16 games (all off the bench) last season, averaging 6.3 points and 11.3 minutes per game. He averaged 7.4 points and 22.5 minutes as a rookie when he was thrust into the starting lineup often because of injuries (73 games, 26 starts) in 2016-17.

      --The Toronto Raptors waived forward Alfonzo McKinnie, the team announced.

      McKinnie, 25, averaged 1.5 points, 0.5 rebounds and 3.8 minutes in 14 games last season.

      Originally undrafted out of Wisconsin-Green Bay, McKinnie was signed by the Raptors as a free agent in July 2017.

      --Field Level Media

  • Report: Curry to also skip Team USA minicamp
    By Field Level Media / Tuesday, July 17, 2018

    A day after ESPN reported that LeBron James will miss Team USA's minicamp in Las Vegas next week, the outlet reported Tuesday that Stephen Curry will do the same.

    • The Golden State Warriors star and two-time NBA MVP reportedly wants to spend more time with his family, particularly with this being his first offseason with his newborn son, born July 2. The minicamp is scheduled for July 25-27.

      In April, Team USA announced a 35-player pool from which 12 players will be selected to compete in the 2019 FIBA World Cup in China 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo.

      According to the reports, neither James nor Curry will be excluded from potentially being chosen for the final roster. Last month, Curry helped the Warriors win their third NBA championship in four seasons. They beat James' Cleveland Cavaliers every time (with the Cavs beating the Warriors for the 2016 title).

      Earlier this month, James signed as a free agent with the Los Angeles Lakers.

      --Field Level Media

  • NBA notebook: Warriors, Kerr reach extension
    By Field Level Media / Tuesday, July 17, 2018

    The Golden State Warriors have signed head coach Steve Kerr to a contract extension, the team announced Tuesday.

    • An ESPN report at the end of June said the sides were finalizing an extension to make Kerr one of the NBA's highest-paid coaches.

      "We're excited to have Steve under contract and poised to lead our team for the next several years," said president of basketball operations/general manager Bob Myers in a statement. "Under his guidance, we've been fortunate enough to win three NBA titles in four years and his ability to thrive in all facets of his job is certainly a primary reason for our success. He's a terrific coach, but more importantly an incredible human being."

      Kerr, 52, just finished the fourth year of a five-year, $25 million contract he signed when he joined the Warriors in 2014.

      The team has gone 265-63 in his four seasons at the helm, making four trips to the NBA Finals and winning three titles.

      --San Antonio Spurs forward Kawhi Leonard is "seriously considering" participating in USA Basketball's national team minicamp next week to show his health to potential trade partners, according to an ESPN report.

      Leonard, who played in just nine games last season while battling a quad injury, has requested a trade and made it clear he does not want to stay in San Antonio, despite Spurs coach Gregg Popovich's efforts to smooth over differences. As the national team's coach, Popovich will lead the minicamp, which will be held at the University of Nevada-Las Vegas.

      According to ESPN, Leonard would like to show teams how he has recovered from his quad injury -- which has been central to his strained relationship with the Spurs -- but there is question as to whether his participation in the camp would help facilitate a trade or give the Spurs more opportunity to try to keep Leonard and patch up past issues.

      --Los Angeles Lakers guard Josh Hart was named the most valuable player of the Las Vegas Summer League, the NBA announced.

      Hart, whose Lakers face the Portland Trail Blazers on Tuesday night in the championship game at 10 p.m. ET, leads all players in scoring (24.2 points per game) in Vegas, while chipping in 5.2 rebounds and 1.5 steals per game in six contests. The 23-year-old racked up 37 points and nine rebounds in Monday night's double-overtime win over the Cleveland Cavaliers in the semifinals.

      Hart averaged 7.9 points and 4.2 rebounds in 23.2 minutes per game across 63 appearances (23 starts) as a rookie last season, shooting 39.6 percent from 3-point range.

      --Fellow Lakers guard Lonzo Ball had arthroscopic surgery on his left knee and the team announced it expects him to make a full recovery by the start of 2018-19 training camp.

      Yahoo Sports reported at the end of June that Ball was diagnosed with a torn meniscus in the knee at the end of the regular season and had gone through various healing processes, though the team has not confirmed a meniscus tear.

      ESPN reported on June 11 that Ball had a platelet-rich plasma shot in the knee earlier this offseason.

      --Free agent forward Nemanja Bjelica will not sign with the Philadelphia 76ers, opting instead to return to Europe, according to an ESPN report.

      Bjelica has informed the 76ers of his decision, according to the report.

      Bjelica averaged 6.8 points and 4.1 rebounds in 20.5 minutes per game with the Wolves last season, shooting 41.5 percent from 3-point range while playing in 67 games (21 starts). All of those figures were career bests during his three-year NBA stint.

      --The Sacramento Kings will trade guard Garrett Temple to the Memphis Grizzlies for guard Ben McLemore, forward Deyonta Davis, cash and a 2021 second-round pick, according to a report from ESPN.

      The Kings will gain an extra $1 million in cap room from the deal, giving them $20.5 million, which is easily the most in the NBA.

      Temple, 32, averaged a career-high 8.4 points in 24.8 minutes per game last season for the Kings, shooting a career-best 39.2 percent from 3-point range in 65 games (35 starts). It was his second season in Sacramento, on top of a 10-day contract he spent there in 2010.

      --Field Level Media

  • Lakers' Ball (knee surgery) expected ready for training camp
    By Field Level Media / Tuesday, July 17, 2018

    Los Angeles Lakers guard Lonzo Ball had arthroscopic surgery on his left knee Tuesday, the team announced.

    • The Lakers had announced last week that Ball would have surgery. As expected, Ball is set to make a full recovery by the start of 2018-19 training camp, according to the Lakers.

      Yahoo Sports reported at the end of June that Ball had a torn meniscus in his left knee but was expected to be ready in time for training camp. Per the report, Ball was diagnosed with the injury at the end of the regular season and had gone through various healing processes.

      ESPN reported on June 11 that Ball had a platelet-rich plasma shot in the knee earlier this offseason, one of a few methods he has attempted in order to get fully healthy after missing the final eight games of the season.

      The Lakers have not confirmed a meniscus tear.

      Ball had problems with the knee during his rookie season, missing a total of 30 games with a sprained medial collateral ligament and a bruised knee, as well as a sprained shoulder. The No. 2 overall pick in the 2017 draft averaged 10.2 points, 7.2 assists and 6.9 rebounds as a rookie.

      General manager Rob Pelinka said earlier this week he expects Ball, who turns 21 in late October, to compete with veteran signee Rajon Rondo for the starting point guard job this season.

      --Field Level Media

  • Lakers G Hart named summer league MVP
    By Field Level Media / Tuesday, July 17, 2018

    Los Angeles Lakers guard Josh Hart was named the most valuable player of the Las Vegas Summer League on Tuesday, the NBA announced.

    • Hart, whose Lakers face the Portland Trail Blazers on Tuesday night in the championship game at 10 p.m. ET, leads all players in scoring (24.2 points per game) in Vegas, while chipping in 5.2 rebounds and 1.5 steals per game in six contests.

      The 23-year-old racked up 37 points and nine rebounds in Monday night's double-overtime win over the Cleveland Cavaliers in the semifinals.

      Lakers president Magic Johnson told reporters on a conference call on Friday that Hart is "playing unbelievable" in Las Vegas and is "pushing to start" during the regular season. L.A. general manager Rob Pelinka said last week that no one on the team's roster is guaranteed a starting spot other than new free agent signee LeBron James.

      Hart averaged 7.9 points and 4.2 rebounds in 23.2 minutes per game across 63 appearances (23 starts) as a rookie, shooting 39.6 percent from 3-point range.

      The only other veteran on the summer league first team was Milwaukee Bucks forward Christian Wood. The seventh, eighth and ninth overall picks from June's draft -- Wendell Carter Jr. (Bulls), Collin Sexton (Cavaliers) and Kevin Knox (Knicks), respectively -- rounded out the first team.

      The second team included three top-five picks in the Suns' Deandre Ayton (first overall), the Grizzlies' Jaren Jackson Jr. (fourth) and the Hawks' Trae Young (fifth).

      First team

      Wendell Carter Jr. (Chicago)

      Josh Hart (Los Angeles Lakers) - MVP

      Kevin Knox (New York)

      Collin Sexton (Cleveland)

      Christian Wood (Milwaukee)

      Second team

      Deandre Ayton (Phoenix)

      Wade Baldwin IV (Portland)

      Jaren Jackson Jr. (Memphis)

      Sviatoslav Mykhailiuk (Los Angeles Lakers)

      Trae Young (Atlanta)

      --Field Level Media

  • Warriors officially sign Kerr to extension
    By Field Level Media / Tuesday, July 17, 2018

    The Golden State Warriors have signed head coach Steve Kerr to a contract extension, the team announced Tuesday.

    • An ESPN report at the end of June said the sides were finalizing an extension to make Kerr one of the NBA's highest-paid coaches.

      "We're excited to have Steve under contract and poised to lead our team for the next several years," said president of basketball operations/general manager Bob Myers. "Under his guidance, we've been fortunate enough to win three NBA titles in four years and his ability to thrive in all facets of his job is certainly a primary reason for our success. He's a terrific coach, but more importantly an incredible human being."

      Kerr, 52, just finished the fourth year of a five-year, $25 million contract he signed when he joined the Warriors in 2014.

      The team has gone 265-63 in his four seasons at the helm, making four trips to the NBA Finals and winning three titles.

      Kerr has battled health issues that have forced him to miss games over the past few seasons, including the first 43 of the 2015-16 season when he was dealing with a serious back injury. But he and the Warriors' front office said previously they expected a new deal to get done quickly.

      Salaries of NBA head coaches are not generally made public, but Doc Rivers' previous contract reportedly averaged eight figures annually, before he signed an extension with the Los Angeles Clippers in May.

      San Antonio Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich is believed to make around $11 million annually.

      --Field Level Media

  • Report: F Bjelica won't sign with 76ers, will return to Europe
    By Field Level Media / Tuesday, July 17, 2018

    Free agent forward Nemanja Bjelica will not sign with the Philadelphia 76ers, opting instead to return to Europe, ESPN reported Tuesday.

    • Per the report, Bjelica informed the 76ers of his decision Tuesday morning.

      The sides reportedly agreed on a one-year, $4.4 million deal on July 5, three days after the Minnesota Timberwolves rescinded the restricted free agent's qualifying offer, but Bjelica never signed a contract.

      The 30-year-old, who spent the last three seasons with the Wolves, was expected to help replace departed free agent Ersan Ilyasova as a stretch big man for Philadelphia.

      Bjelica averaged 6.8 points and 4.1 rebounds in 20.5 minutes per game with the Wolves last season, shooting 41.5 percent from 3-point range while playing in 67 games (21 starts). All of those figures were career bests during his three-year NBA stint.

      A second-round pick of the Washington Wizards in 2010, the Serbian big man played professionally in Europe from 2007 to 2015, most recently from 2013-15 with Fenerbahce Ulker in Istanbul, Turkey. He was named EuroLeague MVP in 2015 before joining Minnesota.

      With Bjelica choosing not to sign, the 76ers still have room for a mid-level exception to use on another free agent, if they choose.

      --Field Level Media

  • Report: Kings trade Temple to Grizzlies for McLemore, Davis
    By Field Level Media / Tuesday, July 17, 2018

    The Sacramento Kings will trade guard Garrett Temple to the Memphis Grizzlies for guard Ben McLemore, forward Deyonta Davis, cash and a 2021 second-round pick, according to an ESPN report Tuesday.

    • The Kings will gain an extra $1 million in cap room from the deal, giving them $20.5 million, which is easily the most in the NBA.

      Temple, 32, averaged a career-high 8.4 points in 24.8 minutes per game last season for the Kings, shooting a career-best 39.2 percent from 3-point range in 65 games (35 starts). It was his second season in Sacramento, on top of a 10-day contract he spent there in 2010.

      The Grizzlies will be Temple's seventh NBA team in his 10th season, after stints with the Rockets, Spurs, Bucks, Bobcats, Heat and Wizards.

      The Kings drafted McLemore with the seventh overall pick in 2013 but declined his option last summer, making him a free agent. He joined the Grizzlies on a two-year, $10.7 million deal.

      The 25-year-old averaged a career-low 7.5 points in 19.5 minutes per game in 56 appearances (17 starts) last season. He has career averages of 9.1 points and 2.6 rebounds in 24.5 minutes per game.

      Davis, 21, was a second-round pick of the Boston Celtics in 2016 who joined the Grizzlies via a draft-day trade. He has spent much of the past two years in the G League, but he averaged 5.8 points and 4.0 rebounds in 15.2 minutes per game across 62 appearances (six starts) for the Grizzlies last season.

      --Field Level Media

  • Report: Leonard considering participating at USA camp
    By Field Level Media / Tuesday, July 17, 2018

    San Antonio Spurs forward Kawhi Leonard is "seriously considering" participating in USA Basketball's national team minicamp next week to show his health to potential trade partners, according to an ESPN report Tuesday.

    • Leonard, who played in just nine games last season while battling a quad injury, has requested a trade and made it clear he does not want to stay in San Antonio, despite Spurs coach Gregg Popovich's efforts to smooth over differences. As the national team's coach, Popovich will lead the minicamp, which will be held at the University of Nevada-Las Vegas.

      According to ESPN, Leonard would like to show teams how he has recovered from his quad injury -- which has been central to his strained relationship with the Spurs -- but there is question as to whether his participation in the camp would help facilitate a trade or give the Spurs more opportunity to try to keep Leonard and patch up past issues.

      Per the report, the Spurs have been patient in continuing to ask for a large return in trade talks with various teams, but the 76ers and Celtics each have offered packages focused more on draft picks than on star players. It adds that the Clippers, Nuggets, Suns, Trail Blazers, Raptors and Wizards have spoken with the Spurs, but few offers have included major trade packages because of uncertainty about Leonard's health and whether he would simply leave his new team in free agency next summer.

      One rival executive told ESPN, "In some ways, [Leonard] has made it so the Sixers know more about his recovery than the Spurs do," because he has worked with one of the 76ers' New York-based physicians.

      The report also indicates the Lakers are not prioritizing a trade for Leonard, opting instead to trust he will want to join them in free agency next summer.

      Leonard, 27, officially became eligible for a five-year, $221 million super-max-level extension on Monday, but there is no expectation he will sign such a deal with the Spurs. Leonard widely has been reported to have interest in playing in Los Angeles, although it's unclear if he has specific interest in joining the Lakers, the Clippers or either one.

      Per the report, the Spurs have not allowed prospective trade partners to speak with Leonard or his representation, and that's not likely to change.

      --Field Level Media

  • Lakers coach Walton on LeBron: 'He's about the team'
    By Field Level Media / Monday, July 16, 2018

    Ahead of coaching LeBron James, the Los Angeles Lakers' Luke Walton is doing his due diligence on the prized free-agent addition.

    • That included his first meeting with James over the weekend in Las Vegas, which Walton came away encouraged by.

      "He's about the team. He's about doing things the right way, and he's about winning," Walton told ESPN of James. "I can work with those qualities."

      Walton is entering his third year on the sideline for the Lakers. In preparation of managing James, he has reached out to two of the star's former coaches -- the Cleveland Cavaliers' Tyronn Lue and Miami Heat's Erik Spoelstra -- and James' former teammates Richard Jefferson and Channing Frye, according to ESPN.

      James, 33, averaged 27.5 points, 9.1 assists and 8.6 rebounds per game with the Cleveland Cavaliers last season. He agreed to join the Lakers on a four-year, $154 million deal on the first official day of free agency.

      James won't be the first star player Walton has coached. The 38-year-old led the Golden State Warriors to a 39-4 record as interim coach in 2015-16 while Steve Kerr recovered from back surgery.

      That team didn't have Kevin Durant but still featured a loaded roster led by Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green.

      While James met with Walton in Las Vegas, he isn't expected to attend USA Basketball's minicamp at UNLV's Mendenhall Center from July 25-27, according to ESPN.

      James, a two-time Olympic gold medalist and three-time participant overall, is part of the 35-player pool the USA Basketball men's national team announced in April. Twelve players from that pool will be selected to take part in the 2019 World Cup in China and 2020 Olympics in Tokyo.

      James wasn't part of the 2016 team that won gold in Rio.

      The Vegas minicamp will be the first official event for this edition of USA Basketball under head coach Gregg Popovich.

      --Field Level Media

  • Report: 76ers try, fail to recruit Rockets GM Morey
    By Field Level Media / Monday, July 16, 2018

    The Philadelphia 76ers tried unsuccessfully to recruit Houston Rockets general manager Daryl Morey to replace ousted executive Bryan Colangelo, according to a report Monday night from the New York Times.

    • Morey, the reigning NBA executive of the year, instead plans to return to Houston for his 13th season in his role. He has shaped the Rockets into championship contenders in a highly competitive Western Conference by acquiring stars such as James Harden and Chris Paul.

      The 45-year-old Morey is a Northwestern alum who earned a masters in business administration from the MIT Sloan School of Management. He has embraced analytics in determining his roster and has drawn comparisons with Billy Beane's innovative "Moneyball" approach in Major League Baseball

      A 76ers spokesman told the New York Times that the team will not comment specifically on its search for a new general manager. Head coach Brett Brown has filled in as interim head of basketball operations while the franchise conducts its hiring search.

      Colangelo resigned in June after a controversy involving "burner" Twitter accounts that used other people's names but disclosed inside information about the organization and its players. The 53-year-old Colangelo said his wife was responsible for the activity on Twitter.

      --Field Level Media

  • NBA notebook: Nuggets welcome Thomas to 'explosive core'
    By Field Level Media / Monday, July 16, 2018

    The Denver Nuggets officially signed point guard Isaiah Thomas to a one-year deal Monday reported to be worth $2 million.

    • Thomas, 29, will join his sixth team as he enters his eighth NBA season. A two-time All-Star, he is coming off an injury-plagued 2017-18 season but has averaged more than 20.0 points in three different seasons.

      "It's not every day you have the chance to add a player with the talent and pedigree of Isaiah Thomas," said Nuggets president of basketball operations Tim Connelly. "Isaiah is a player that we know will work extremely hard every single day he steps onto the basketball court and will do anything he can to help our team win. We are excited to add Isaiah to our already explosive core and we can't wait to get started."

      After opening his NBA career with the Sacramento Kings in 2011-12 and subsequently playing for the Phoenix Suns, Thomas exploded into stardom with the Celtics. He was an All-Star in both 2015-16 and 2016-17, averaging 25.5 points and 6.1 assists in those seasons combined.

      --The San Antonio Spurs have agreed to a one-year deal with free agent forward Dante Cunningham worth around $2.5 million, according to multiple reports.

      The 6-foot-8 Cunningham reportedly considered the Spurs and the Brooklyn Nets after averaging 5.7 points and 4.1 rebounds in 73 games for Brooklyn and the New Orleans Pelicans last season.

      The nine-year veteran has played previously for Portland, Charlotte, Memphis, Minnesota, New Orleans and Brooklyn.

      --The Milwaukee Bucks officially welcomed back veteran forward Ersan Ilyasova on a reported three-year deal worth $21 million.

      Ilyasova, 31, was drafted by the Bucks in 2005 and stayed with the franchise through the 2014-15 campaign. He spent the past three seasons with a handful of teams, most recently the Philadelphia 76ers, where he averaged 10.8 points and 6.7 rebounds in 23 games (three starts) last season.

      "Ersan is a high-character, veteran player who gives our team an additional shooter to help spread the court," Bucks general manager Jon Horst said in a statement. "He has a team-first mentality and brings toughness and energy to both ends of the floor. We are very excited to have him and his family back in Milwaukee."

      --The 76ers announced that they have re-signed forward-center Amir Johnson to a deal reportedly worth $11 million for one season.

      Johnson, 31, averaged 4.6 points and 4.5 rebounds in 74 games (18 starts) with Philadelphia last season. He has averaged 7.2 points and 5.5 rebounds across 819 career games with the Detroit Pistons, Toronto Raptors, Celtics and 76ers.

      "Our experience with Amir last year confirms to us, on so many levels, that he is a perfect fit for our young and developing team," 76ers head coach Brett Brown said in a statement. "His work ethic, leadership and buy-in to team-first basketball all comes to mind when I think of his value to our ball club, and his acceptance of a backup role to All-Star Joel Embiid is priceless."

      --The New York Knicks waived forward Troy Williams, getting the team down to 15 players under contract along with a pair of two-way contract players.

      The 6-7 Williams signed the first of two 10-day contracts with the Knicks in February and was eventually signed for the remainder of the season in March. He averaged 7.5 points, 3.5 rebounds and 17.1 minutes in 17 games, and scored in double figures seven times.

      Williams, 23, has played for three teams since going undrafted out of Indiana in 2016. His contract included a partial guarantee for the 2018-19 season, and Williams played in five games for the Knicks' Summer League team in Las Vegas this month, averaging 11.8 points.

      --Field Level Media

  • Knicks waive F Williams
    By Field Level Media / Monday, July 16, 2018

    The New York Knicks waived forward Troy Williams on Monday, getting the team down to 15 players under contract along with a pair of two-way contract players.

    • The 6-foot-7 Williams signed the first of two 10-day contracts with the Knicks in February and was eventually signed for the remainder of the season in March. He finished averaging 7.5 points, 3.5 rebounds and 17.1 minutes in 17 games, and scored in double figures seven times.

      Williams, 23, has played for three teams since going undrafted out of Indiana in 2016. His contract included a partial guarantee for the 2018-19 season, and Williams played in five games for the Knicks' Summer League team in Las Vegas this month, averaging 11.8 points.

      --Field Level Media

  • Reports: Spurs add F Cunningham
    By Field Level Media / Monday, July 16, 2018

    The San Antonio Spurs have agreed to a one-year deal with free agent forward Dante Cunningham worth around $2.5 million, according to multiple reports.

    • The 6-foot-8 Cunningham reportedly considered the Spurs and the Brooklyn Nets after averaging 5.7 points and 4.1 rebounds in 73 games for Brooklyn and the New Orleans Pelicans last season.

      The nine-year veteran has played previously for Portland, Charlotte, Memphis, Minnesota, New Orleans and Brooklyn.

      Cunningham, 31, is averaging 6.1 points and 3.8 rebounds per game for his career. He is likely to replace Kyle Anderson (four-year, $37.2 million deal with the Memphis Grizzlies) in providing the Spurs with a versatile backup forward.

      --Field Level Media

  • Nuggets officially sign Isaiah Thomas
    By Field Level Media / Monday, July 16, 2018

    The Denver Nuggets officially signed point guard Isaiah Thomas to a one-year deal Monday reported to be worth $2 million.

    • Thomas, 29, will join his sixth team as he enters his eighth NBA season. A two-time All-Star, he is coming off an injury-plagued 2017-18 season but has averaged more than 20.0 points in three different seasons.

      "It's not every day you have the chance to add a player with the talent and pedigree of Isaiah Thomas," said Nuggets president of basketball operations Tim Connelly. "Isaiah is a player that we know will work extremely hard every single day he steps onto the basketball court and will do anything he can to help our team win. We are excited to add Isaiah to our already explosive core and we can't wait to get started."

      Thomas recently got together with Connelly and Nuggets coach Michael Malone to discuss his potential place in the club's plans, and the contract agreement was first reported by ESPN on Friday.

      After opening his NBA career with the Sacramento Kings in 2011-12 and subsequently playing for the Phoenix Suns, Thomas exploded into stardom with the Celtics. He was an All-Star in both 2015-16 and 2016-17, averaging 25.5 points and 6.1 assists in those seasons combined.

      He guided the Celtics in the 2017 Eastern Conference finals against the Cavaliers before he was sidelined due to a hip ailment.

      Last summer, the Celtics dealt Thomas, Jae Crowder, Ante Zizic, a 2018 first-round draft pick and a 2020 second-rounder to the Cavaliers for guard Kyrie Irving.

      After missing the first 36 games of last season, Thomas returned to average 14.7 points and 4.5 assists in 15 games (14 starts). With the Cavaliers struggling, however, they dealt Thomas, Channing Frye and a 2018 first-round draft pick to the Los Angeles Lakers on Feb. 8 for Jordan Clarkson and Larry Nance Jr.

      In 17 games, including just one start, for Los Angeles, Thomas averaged 15.6 points and five assists.

      The Kings selected Thomas in the second round (60th overall) in the 2011 draft out of the University of Washington.

      --Field Level Media

  • Celtics guarantee F Ojeleye's contract, waive Allen
    By Field Level Media / Monday, July 16, 2018

    The Boston Celtics are keeping forward Semi Ojeleye on the roster and have waived guard Kadeem Allen. Both players' 2018-19 salaries would become guaranteed if they were on the roster beyond Sunday evening.

    • Ojeleye is now guaranteed $1.38 million this season after making $1.29 million last year. Allen was on a two-way contract and was waived with the expectation that Boston will sign another two-way player.

      Ojeleye, 23, averaged 2.7 points and 2.2 rebounds in 15.8 minutes per game in 73 games off the bench for the Celtics last year. Boston took him with the 37th pick in the 2017 draft out of SMU.

      Allen, 25, was taken 16 picks later by the Celtics last year and signed a two-way deal last summer. He appeared in just 18 NBA games (starting one) as a rookie, scoring 19 points in 107 total minutes. He averaged 17.7 points, 5.5 rebounds, 4.9 assists and 2.2 steals in 34 games (33 starts) for Boston's G League affiliate, the Maine Red Claws.

      The Celtics now have 13 guaranteed contracts on the roster for the 2018-19 season.

      --Field Level Media

  • Hall of Famer Robertson auctioning off championship ring, other memorabilia
    By Field Level Media / Sunday, July 15, 2018

    Oscar Robertson is set to auction off some of his most prominent basketball memorabilia, including his 1971 NBA championship ring.

    • Robertson, a former NBA MVP and Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame inductee, is auctioning off a variety of items in a Lelands.com event that runs through Aug. 17.

      Among the 51 items listed are Robertson's championship ring he won with the Milwaukee Bucks in 1971, his Basketball Hall of Fame ring and induction trophy, 11 of his NBA All-Star rings -- he was a 12-time All-Star -- and his game-worn jerseys from the Bucks and University of Cincinnati.

      Each item will include letter of authenticity signed by Robertson, whose storied NBA career ended in 1974. He has since had his jersey number retired by both the Bucks and Sacramento Kings. He was named to the Naismith Hall of Fame in 1980 for his playing career, which included nine first team All-NBA selections and the NBA Most Valuable Player award in 1964.

      Robertson was honored last month with the NBA's Lifetime Achievement Award.

      --Field Level Media

  • NBA notebook: Parker joins hometown Bulls, with Bucks' help
    By Field Level Media / Saturday, July 14, 2018

    Free agent forward Jabari Parker signed a reported two-year deal worth $40 million with the Chicago Bulls on Saturday afternoon, not long after Milwaukee Bucks general manager John Horst rescinded the team's qualifying offer to Parker.

    • The four-year NBA veteran is a Chicago native who was the high school National Player of the Year while starring at Simeon Career Academy. The Bulls cleared roster space by releasing guard Julyan Stone and forward Paul Zipser.

      "Jabari is a 23-year-old player who is a natural fit with our young core, and is a proven scorer at the NBA level," general manager Gar Forman said in a statement. "We look forward to welcoming him back to his hometown."

      The Bucks were never expected to match any offer sheet Parker would have signed with the Bulls, but according to ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski, rescinding the offer sheet was a "good-faith gesture" that allowed Parker to negotiate a shorter deal with Chicago.

      --Channing Frye reportedly is heading back to the Cleveland Cavaliers, where he earned a championship ring in 2016.

      Frye, 35, has agreed to a one-year, $2.4 million deal to return to the Cavaliers, according to multiple reports. The 6-foot-11 center started last season with Cleveland but was traded to the Los Angeles Lakers on Feb. 8 as part of a deal that sent Jordan Clarkson and Larry Nance Jr. to the Cavaliers.

      Frye averaged 5.0 points and 2.5 rebounds in 13.1 minutes per game last season, playing 44 games with the Cavs and nine with the Lakers. He shot 33.9 percent from 3-point range, down from 40.9 percent the year before.

      --Free agent guard Shabazz Napier celebrated his 27th birthday by agreeing to sign a two-year deal with the Brooklyn Nets, according to an ESPN report.

      Per the report, the second year of the contract is a team option. Terms of the deal are unknown.

      Napier spent the last two seasons with the Portland Trail Blazers, posting career highs almost across the board last year. He averaged 8.7 points, 2.0 assists, 2.3 rebounds and 1.1 steals in 20.7 minutes per game across 74 appearances, including 10 starts. He also boosted his 3-point accuracy (37.6 percent), bringing his career average to 36.3 percent.

      --Field Level Media

  • Report: Nets agree with G Napier on two-year deal
    By Field Level Media / Saturday, July 14, 2018

    Free agent guard Shabazz Napier celebrated his 27th birthday on Saturday by agreeing to sign a two-year deal with the Brooklyn Nets, according to an ESPN report.

    • Per the report, the second year of the contract is a team option.

      Napier spent the last two seasons with the Portland Trail Blazers, posting career highs almost across the board last year. He averaged 8.7 points, 2.0 assists, 2.3 rebounds and 1.1 steals in 20.7 minutes per game across 74 appearances, including 10 starts. He also boosted his 3-point accuracy (37.6 percent), bringing his career average to 36.3 percent.

      Napier has career averages of 5.7 points and 1.9 assists in 15.7 minutes per game across four NBA seasons, including a year each with the Miami Heat and Orlando Magic.

      He was the 24th overall pick in 2014, a few months after leading Connecticut to the national championship.

      --Field Level Media

  • Billups still seeking front-office job
    By Field Level Media / Saturday, July 14, 2018

    Chauncey Billups still has every intention of running an NBA team someday, the five-time All-Star told reporters Friday night.

    • Now 41 and more than four years removed from his last NBA action, Billups has been playing for the Killer 3s in the BIG3 -- entertainer Ice Cube's 3-on-3 league featuring old NBA stars -- while also working for ESPN as an analyst and seeking a front-office position with an NBA team.

      With the BIG3 visiting Detroit -- where he played in parts of eight seasons with the Pistons -- Billups told reporters that his goal remains the same.

      "My desire is to one day run a team, be in a front office and try to build a champion," he said. "I know that I will and I know I'm going to do a good job. When that opportunity presents itself -- and it's a good opportunity -- I'll be ready to go."

      Billups had discussions with the Cleveland Cavaliers last offseason about being the team's president of basketball operations, but he turned down the job after reportedly being offered a $2 million salary, about half of what a typical NBA general manager might be offered. The Cavs promoted Koby Altman -- previously the assistant GM -- to general manager a few weeks later.

      Many speculated that Billups could join his former team, the Pistons, in the front office this offseason after they fired head coach and president of basketball operations Stan Van Gundy. However, Detroit brought on Ed Stefanski as a senior executive and hired former Toronto Raptors head coach Dwane Casey for the same position.

      Billups, who didn't play in Friday night's game as he deals with an injury, says he remains very fond of Detroit, where he won his only NBA championship in 2004.

      "Everybody knows how much I love the city, love the fans," he said. "...So it's always good to be back here. I'm such a big Pistons fan."

      --Field Level Media

  • Reports: Frye heading back to Cavaliers
    By Field Level Media / Saturday, July 14, 2018

    Channing Frye reportedly is heading back to the Cleveland Cavaliers, where he earned a championship ring in 2016.

    • Frye, 35, has agreed to a one-year, $2.4 million deal to return to the Cavaliers, according to multiple reports on Saturday. The 6-foot-11 center started last season with Cleveland but was traded to the Los Angeles Lakers on Feb. 8 as part of a deal that sent Jordan Clarkson and Larry Nance Jr. to the Cavaliers.

      In parts of 12 seasons, Frye has averaged 9.0 points and 4.6 rebounds per game. He has started 439 of 854 career games with a half-dozen teams including the New York Knicks, Portland Trail Blazers, Phoenix Suns, Orlando Magic, Cavaliers and Lakers. Frye missed the 2012-13 campaign because of an enlarged heart.

      Cleveland lost LeBron James to the Lakers this offseason but is aiming to stay competitive in 2018-19. Frye joins a group of big men that includes Kevin Love, Tristan Thompson and Ante Zizic. The Cavaliers drafted energetic guard Collin Sexton in the first round this summer and will put him in the backcourt along with Clarkson, George Hill, JR Smith, Kyle Korver and others.

      Frye averaged 6.7 points and 2.4 rebounds per game in 17 playoff contests in 2016 to earn his first championship. He has appeared in 49 career playoff games with the Trail Blazers, Suns and Cavaliers, averaging 7.0 points and 3.2 rebounds.

      --Field Level Media

  • After help from Bucks, Parker signs with Bulls
    By Field Level Media / Saturday, July 14, 2018

    Jabari Parker is getting his wish.

    • The free-agent forward signed a reported two-year deal worth $40 million with the Chicago Bulls on Saturday afternoon, not long after Milwaukee Bucks general manager John Horst rescinded the team's qualifying offer to Parker. The four-year NBA veteran is a Chicago native who was the high school National Player of the Year while starring at Simeon Career Academy.

      "Jabari is a 23-year-old player who is a natural fit with our young core, and is a proven scorer at the NBA level," Bulls general manager Gar Forman said in a statement. "We look forward to welcoming him back to his hometown."

      Chicago cleared roster space by releasing guard Julyan Stone and forward Paul Zipser.

      The Bucks were never expected to match any offer sheet Parker would have signed with the Bulls, but according to ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski, rescinding the offer sheet was a "good-faith gesture" that allowed Parker to negotiate a shorter deal with Chicago.

      "Jabari and I felt it was in the best interest of both he and the team to rescind our qualifying offer, making him an unrestricted free agent," Horst said in a statement. "We appreciate everything Jabari has brought to our team and our community over the last four years and we wish him well."

      Parker was the No. 2 overall selection out of Duke in the 2014 NBA Draft, but his career has been marred by injury. He twice has been sidelined by tears of the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee, the most recent of which caused him to miss the first 50 games last season. He played in 31 games for the Bucks, starting just three and averaging 12.6 points, 4.9 rebounds and 1.9 assists.

      According to multiple reports, the second year of the Bulls deal is a team option, allowing Parker to prove he can stay healthy and be productive with minimal risk to the club.

      In Chicago, Parker will join a young nucleus that includes Wendell Carter Jr., Kris Dunn, Lauri Markkanen and Zach LaVine. The Bulls hope to return to relevance this season after posting a 27-55 record in 2017-18.

      "I am extremely grateful to the Bucks and the incredible fans of Milwaukee for showing me so much love and encouragement," Parker said in the statement released by the Bucks. "Thank you to my teammates for being like brothers to me. Also, the medical and performance staff led by Troy Flanagan and Suki Hobson deserve my unending thanks for their dedication in helping me get stronger and healthier every day."

      In 183 career games, Parker has averaged 15.3 points and 5.5 rebounds, all with Milwaukee.

      --Field Level Media

  • Former NBA All-Star, Wake Forest legend Chappell dead at 77
    By Field Level Media / Saturday, July 14, 2018

    Len Chappell, a former NBA All-Star and two-time ACC Player of the Year while at Wake Forest, died Thursday at age 77, the university announced Friday.

    • According to the Winston-Salem Journal, the former Demon Deacons star had been struggling with his health for a few weeks. Dave Budd, who was teammates with Chappell in college and in the NBA with the New York Knicks, told the Journal that Chappell was injured in a recent fall and suffered a stroke while rehabbing.

      No cause of death was released by Wake Forest. The Journal reported that Chappell passed away one day after his son, Jason, arrived from Europe to see him.

      Chappell played nine seasons in the NBA for nine teams. Originally taken with the No. 4 overall pick in the 1962 NBA Draft by the Syracuse Nationals (who became the Philadelphia 76ers a year later), Chappell was sold to the Knicks one game into his second season. The 6-foot-8 forward enjoyed his lone All-Star campaign in that 1963-64 season, averaging 17.1 points and 9.8 rebounds per game.

      After three years in New York, Chappell was a journeyman for the remainder of his six seasons, playing for the Chicago Bulls (1966), Cincinnati Royals (1966-67), Detroit Pistons (1967-68), Milwaukee Bucks (1968-70), Cleveland Cavaliers (1970) and Atlanta Hawks (1970-71). He finished his professional career by playing the 1971-72 season with the Dallas Chaparrals of the ABA.

      For his NBA career, he averaged 9.5 points and 5.3 rebounds in 591 games.

      Chappell won a pair of Atlantic Coast Conference tournament titles and led Wake Forest to the school's only Final Four trip in 1962. He was the school's first consensus All-American. He was also named ACC top player 1961 and 1962, one of only 10 players in ACC history to win the award twice. He averaged 30.1 points per game as an All-American in 1961-62, still a school single-season record.

      Chappell eventually had his No. 50 retired by the school.

      --Field Level Media