|NBA roundup: Nets retain Deron Williams after acquiring Joe Johnson||07.04.12 at 11:33 am ET|
Although no new contracts can officially be signed until July 11, a few teams already have reached agreements with some free agents. Here’s a recap of all the moves from a busy day Tuesday.
The Nets, preparing for their first season in Brooklyn, stole almost all the headlines. They came to an agreement to re-sign sought-after point guard Deron Williams, who hinted at his decision Tuesday night by tweeting a picture of the Nets logo. The deal reportedly is for five years and $98 million. Last season Williams averaged 21 points per game for the Nets.
The Williams deal came after reports that the Nets agreed to a multiplayer trade with the Hawks that will send Joe Johnson to Brooklyn in exchange for Jordan Farmar, DeShawn Stevenson, Johan Petro, Anthony Morrow and Jordan Williams along with a first-round draft pick.
Brooklyn’s flurry of moves come two days after the team reportedly agreed with Gerald Wallace on a four-year, $40 million deal. Wallace, acquired by the Nets at the trade deadline, averaged 13.8 points and 6.7 rebounds last season in Portland and New Jersey.
The Hawks also were busy Tuesday. In addition to the trade of Johnson, Atlanta reportedly agreed to swap forward Marvin Williams for Jazz guard Devin Harris. Williams averaged 10.2 points and 5.2 rebounds per game last season, while Harris averaged 13 points per game.
Eric Gordon, a restricted free agent guard for the Hornets, opted to sign with the Suns for a reported four-year contract worth $58 million. The Hornets are expected to match the offer within the three-day limit, although Gordon said he would like to play for Phoenix.
The Raptors reportedly reached an agreement with Knicks guard Landry Fields for $20 million over three years. Because Fields is a restricted free agent, the Knicks have three days to match the offer. Last season Fields averaged 4.2 rebounds and 8.8 points per game while shooting 46 percent from the field.
|Report: Nets discussing trade with Magic for Dwight Howard||07.03.12 at 9:59 am ET|
Even after landing All-Star guard Joe Johnson in a trade Monday and amidst being a front-runner to re-sign Deron Williams, the Nets are in active pursuit of trading for Dwight Howard, according to a report ESPN’s Chris Broussard.
Broussard says the Nets and Magic are in talks of a trade that would send Brook Lopez, Kris Humphries, Marshon Brooks and the Nets’ first round picks in 2013, 2015 and 2017 to Orlando for the All-Star big man.
Sources, according to Broussard, are expecting Williams to re-sign in Brooklyn, citing that he was pleased with the acquisition of Johnson. Atlanta reportedly shipped him for DeShawn Stevenson, the Nets’ 2013 first-round pick (from Houston) and the expiring contracts of Jordan Farmar, Johan Petro, Anthony Morrow and Jordan Williams on Monday.
Howard has reportedly asked the Magic multiple times that he’d like to be traded to Brooklyn in the last week, and on Monday spoke publicly to Yahoo! Sports that he would only sign a long-term deal with one team, which is believed to be the Nets. But after they traded for Johnson, talks of a trade for Howard appeared to hit a wall.
|Report: Nets PG Deron Williams to meet with Nets, Mavs on Monday||07.01.12 at 2:13 pm ET|
Deron Williams, widely considered as the best player in this year’s free agent class, told ESPN The Magazine’s Chris Broussard that he will meet with representatives of the Nets and Mavericks on Monday. Broussard says Williams is leaning towards signing with one team, but wouldn’t reveal which one.
Sources also told ESPN the Magazine’s Ric Bucher that free agent guard Jason Kidd will follow Williams where ever he goes. However, Williams told Broussard that he and Kidd are not a “package deal.” The 28-year-old did admit to Broussard that the two were in contact about playing together, but said that both are going to do what’s best for each other.
Bucher had also been informed by sources with business ties to Williams and Kidd that the two have already decided to play together in Brooklyn for next season. Yet, other sources claim that Williams has still yet to choose between the two teams.
The Nets guard said he wants to make his decision before training camp for the U.S. men’s Olympic team which begins on July 7.
|Wednesday’s Morning Mashup: Red Sox tickets remain most expensive in MLB||04.11.12 at 7:47 am ET|
WEDNESDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS:
NBA: Hawks at Celtics, 8 p.m. (CSNNE; WEEI)
NBA: Knicks at Bucks, 8 p.m. (ESPN)
NBA: Warriors at Trail Blazers, 10:30 p.m. (ESPN)
NHL playoffs: Flyers at Penguins, 7:30 p.m. (NBCSN)
NHL playoffs: Kings at Canucks, 10:30 p.m. (NHL Network)
MLB: Red Sox at Blue Jays, 12:37 p.m. (NESN; WEEI)
MLB: Nationals at Mets, 1 p.m. (MLB Network)
MLB: Brewers at Cubs, 2:10 p.m. (WGN)
MLB: Marlins at Phillies, 7 p.m. (ESPN2)
AROUND THE WEB:
♦ Despite the Red Sox’ decision to freeze ticket prices following last season’s collapse, the team’s ticket prices remain the highest in Major League Baseball for the second year in a row, according to information compiled by Team Marketing Report. Sox tickets average $53.38 per non-premium seat, and the cost to take a family of four to Fenway — including two adults tickets, two children’s tickets, two small draft beers, four small soft drinks, four regular-size hot dogs, parking, two game programs and two baseball caps — is a league-high $336.99.
Overall, MLB ticket prices increased only 1 percent from last season, the smallest increase in the survey’s two-decade history. The average ticket price is $26.92.
♦ Nets owner Mikhail Prokhorov said Tuesday that he has talked to point guard Deron Williams about re-signing after he becomes a free agent this offseason. As for Mavericks owner Mark Cuban trying to lure Williams back to his hometown of Dallas?
“Let the best man win,” Prokhorov said, joking: “If he wins, I will crush him with the kickboxing throwdown.”
Meanwhile, Cuban confirmed Tuesday night that he had a confrontation at halftime of a recent game with forward Lamar Odom, leading to the team placing Odom on the inactive list for the remainder of the season. The argument came during Saturday’s loss to the Grizzlies in Memphis.
“I just asked him, does he want to go for it or not. Is he in or is he out? I think he thought we were playing poker. I just didn’t get a commitment. And that was the end,” Cuban said. “This was a big game for us, and he wasn’t connecting to that. And if you’re not positive energy, you’re negative energy.”
♦ Bryan Stow, the Giants fan who suffered brain damage after being beaten outside Dodger Stadium at last year’s opener, will not accept an invitation from the Giants to appear at AT&T Park for the home opener. “We’re concerned it might tire him out too much and set back his recovery,” his mother, Ann Stow, told the San Jose Mercury News, which has an update on Stow’s recovery process.
♦ Reebok agreed to remove thousands of pieces of Jets apparel it produced with Tim Tebow‘s name after a settlement with Nike that was disclosed Tuesday. Nike is set to take over the league’s apparel licensing deal from Reebok, and it sued the Canton company to stop it from trying to get in a last-minute money grab.
ON THIS DAY TRIVIA: On April 11, 1998, which Red Sox pitcher recorded his 1,000th career strikeout?
|Jazz owner Greg Miller says Karl Malone is ‘too unreliable and too unstable’||02.04.12 at 4:12 pm ET|
Jazz owner and CEO Greg Miller is unhappy with comments made by assistant coach Karl Malone in an interview with a Salt Lake City newspaper. Miller claims Malone lied to the newspaper when the Hall of Famer said the only way he could get Jazz tickets was to purchase them from a scalper.
Miller refuted the statement in a blog post, referring to Malone as being “too unreliable and too unstable” to help the team as an assistant coach.
Miller also sent a tweet: Hey Karl – You’re lying. You have my number. Next time you need a seat to a Jazz game, call me. You can have mine.
Miller’s comments came one week after Malone criticized the way the team handled last year’s feud between point guard Deron Williams and coach Jerry Sloan, who resigned midseason. Malone said that Williams, since traded to the Nets, was given too much power by the Jazz, and in turn the coach had to pay the price.
Said Malone in a radio interview: “I know for a fact that [Sloan] was overridden on practices sometimes on the road because Deron was calling our GM [Kevin O'Connor] at that time. … You give a guy that much power, and he’s the kind of player you think he played hard all the time, but if he wanted to sulk he could sulk. … I never went to [late owner] Larry [Miller] to talk about coach Sloan. … It’s not one time, in my gut and heart, that I would go over his head.”
Greg Miller, who took over the team following his father’s death, wrote in his blog post that Malone isn’t worth the trouble he causes: The fact is Karl is still as high-maintenance as he ever was, but now he has nothing to offer to offset the grief and aggravation that comes with him.
|Monday’s Morning Mashup: Titans accuse Saints of using whistle on sideline||12.12.11 at 8:06 am ET|
MONDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS:
NFL: Rams at Seahawks, 8:30 p.m. (ESPN; WEEI)
NHL: Devils at Lightning, 7 p.m. (Versus)
AROUND THE WEB:
♦ The Titans dropped a 22-17 decision to the visiting Saints on Sunday, but a couple of Tennessee players said there was some funny business originating from the New Orleans sideline.
Offensive linemen Jake Scott and Michael Roos said they heard a whistle coming from the Saints sideline late in the game, and a producer for “Titans All Access” has proof after capturing it with a microphone that was on Roos.
“Somebody was blowing a whistle on the sideline,” Scott said. “There is audio of it, so we’ll let it go from there. The second-to-last drive, I think.”
Said Roos: “Everybody on our side heard something, we’re not sure where it came from exactly. But it sounded like from over there, and until we know more I can’t really say anything else. It’s not something that should be done but until we can have somebody look at it, we’ll have to wait and see.”
The Saints did not comment after the game.
♦ The Cincinnati and Xavier basketball teams brawled on Saturday, and Cincy coach Mick Cronin was especially forthcoming in the postgame press conference about how embarrassed he was. And yet, on Sunday the punishments were announced, and the longest suspension was for just six games. That was for Yancy Gates, who hit Xavier’s Kenny Frease with a sucker punch to the face that left Frease bleeding, punched another player and had to be restrained from continuing his assaults. At Yahoo! Sports, Pat Forde criticizes both teams for the “copout” as they failed to follow through on their tough talk.
♦ Nets guard Deron Williams weighed in on the aborted Chris Paul trade to the Lakers and didn’t hold back when talking about the NBA commissioner. “David Stern‘s a bully,” he said. “You really can’t go up against him, man.” And when asked if he was OK with that quote bring used, Williams said: “[Stern] knows he’s a bully. Ain’t no secret. … Everybody knows that. I think every owner of every big business is a bully. That’s how they become successful.”
ON THIS DAY TRIVIA: On Dec. 12, 1975, the Red Sox traded Roger Moret to the Braves for which pitcher, known in part for the fact that he caught Hank Aaron‘s 715th home run ball in the Atlanta bullpen in 1974?
|Kobe Bryant reportedly ends talk with Turkish basketball team||08.14.11 at 6:43 pm ET|
Kobe Bryant has ended negotiations with the Istanbul-based basketball team Besiktas, according to a report Saturday by E. Carchia, writer for the international basketball blog Sportando.
Obrad Fimic, the agent from Alti Sports who was negotiating with Besiktas on Bryant’s behalf, said the Turkish team’s final offer was still too low for a former MVP, five-time NBA champion and 13-time All-Star.
Bryant would not have been the first NBA player to sign with Besiktas. Nets point guard Deron Williams is already on the roster.
|Report: Kevin Durant in negotiations with Turkish club||08.10.11 at 10:49 am ET|
Kevin Durant is in the early stages of contract negotiations with the Turkish club Besiktas, according to an ESPN report. This is the same team that signed Jazz point guard Deron Williams and reportedly is interested in Kobe Bryant.
“The Turkish option is very intriguing,” said Durant’s agent, Aaron Goodwin. “We’re looking at other countries as well. Kevin hasn’t agreed to play anywhere yet, but we’re looking for the best fit.”
The Turkish newspaper VATAN reported that if Besiktas is unsuccessful in adding Bryant they will shift their attention towards Durant.
Two weeks ago, at a WNBA game Durant told The Associated Press that he is “about 50-50″ on playing in Europe during a potential lockout.
|Report: Turkish team no longer after Kobe Bryant||07.18.11 at 5:44 pm ET|
Besiktas, the Turkish team that recently reached an agreement with Jazz guard Deron Williams to play for them if the NBA lockout continues, have put its pursuit of Kobe Bryant on hold, according to ESPN, citing an overseas report.
There is a match-fixing scandal in Turkey, which has tied up Besiktas’ funds.
According to the report, Besiktas was originally going to offer Bryant a monthly salary of $500,000, while Bryant was seeking a monthly salary of $1 million to join Williams and the Turkish club. Any move the team makes would have to come from the support of an outside sponsor.
Dwight Howard told The Associated Press Sunday that should an NBA lockout happen, one of its biggest stars may go elsewhere.
“I’m not at liberty to talk about it,” he said, “but there’s a huge possibility about me going to China or me going overseas to play basketball.
Nets guard Deron Williams said after signing with a Turkish team that Howard could become an international star if he left the NBA to play overseas. Howard told the AP he would go in order to maintain and improve his skills during the lockout.
“I don’t want to just sit over here and forget about basketball and waste, you know, opportunities for me to get better.”
Howard, a five-time All-Star and three-time Defensive Player of the Year, has enjoyed working with children in hometown Atlanta. Playing overseas would allow him to continue to work with disadvantaged children.
“Being a role model lasts longer than being a basketball player,” Howard said. “Right now I have an opportunity to do a lot of great things. I’m blessed with a lot of talents, but one of my talents is being great with kids. Being a good role model, you just want to lead them in the right direction.”
Howard has already hosted a basketball camp in Spain and was planning to host another in China before the lockout “messed everything up.”
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