Now that the 2017 NBA Draft has come and gone, the attention has now shifted to seeing where some of the NBA’s biggest names will land this summer. After Chicago’s Jimmy Butler was dealt on draft night, Indiana’s Paul George has become the hottest name on the trading block, while Los Angeles’s Chris Paul could be the biggest free agent to change locations this summer.
Here’s what happened over the weekend:
Cleveland is still hoping to revamp their roster in an attempt to hang with the Golden State Warriors, and their sights seem to be set on Paul George, even if it’s only for one year. ESPN said Cleveland brought Denver into the discussion on draft to see if they would be interested in funneling some of their young players to Indiana in hopes of facilitating a deal, but it never materialized on Thursday. Stein and Haynes write that Cleveland plans on re-visiting the deal, however.
The story also mentions Cleveland will be the leading contender for Carmelo Anthony if/when he’s bought out.
As much as trading for Paul George would be helpful for this Cavaliers team, moving Kevin Love for a player who could most likely be there for just one season seems unwise. If George opts to leave for Los Angeles next summer, and LeBron James follows suit as some have reported, all they’ll be left with is a frustrated Kyrie Irving.
Butler made more sense because he’s he perfect upgrade from Iman Shumpert, and still under team control for two more years, but trading for George feels like they’d making their window to compete even slimmer.
The Rockets are apparently trying to make a run at Paul, who just opted out of his deal with the Clippers, but will need to dump a ton of money to do it. Lou Williams is due $7 million this year, and Ryan Anderson and Eric Gordon are locked into multi-year, big money contracts.
Houston currently sits just $9 million under the cap.
The Mavericks are hoping to re-work Nowitzki’s deal so they can sign for a few more years at a lower rate. Dallas had just $59 million tied up in salary for next year (including Nowitzki’s team option), so a pay cut for him could give the team some more options in free agency this summer.
Perhaps they’ll give Nerlens Noel close to that max contract he’s so desperately seeking this summer.
"There's uncertainty right now," Bolden said. "I am subject to a contract over in Europe. Obviously, I am prepared and ready to play in the league. Whether that is the plan for the [Philadelphia] organization or not is not in my hands. They drafted me with a plan, and I believe they have the best plan for my future, whether that is playing over here or overseas."
I did not know who Mathias Lessort was during the NBA draft on Thursday night, as I sat eight feet away from him during some of the most critical moments of his life. NBA experts did — our Draft Guide described him as “an elite athlete who plays relentlessly on offense and defense.” I just knew he was a very tall person in a very beautiful suit, which meant he was at the NBA draft to get selected. But as the draft marched on, I feared the moment he’d flown his family to New York for would never come.
Allen Iverson made his debut in the Big3
Iverson played in the Big3’s first game on Sunday, and knocked down this jumper for his only points of the game. He was 1-6, and played very limited minutes. Enjoy this while you can, because Iverson doesn’t plan on playing much at all. Iverson’s team won by 10.
Jason Williams injures right leg in Big3 game
This was not pretty. Maybe some of these retired players should, well, stay retired. Williams wasn’t seriously injured on the play, but that was certainly scary to watch.