The Philadelphia 76ers are back in our newsfeeds with today’s Media Day proceedings, but that doesn’t mean we should ignore the stories happening around the rest of the NBA. Let’s recap some of the latest injuries, trades, and rumors across the Association.
Broken toe for Markelle Fultz
Orlando announced that guard Markelle Fultz suffered a fracture in his big left toe.— Bobby Marks (@BobbyMarks42) September 25, 2022
He has been placed in a walking boot and his return to play will depend on how he responds to rehab and treatment.
One of the feel-good stories towards the end of last regular season was Markelle Fultz returning to the court following a nearly 14-month absence due to a torn ACL. Fultz averaged 10.8 points and 5.5 assists per games across 18 contests with the Orlando Magic, generally looking recovered from the leg injury, not to mention everything that transpired with Philadelphia a half-decade ago.
Now, it’s another bad break for the 24-year-old. You’d really like to see him be able to string a couple healthy seasons together so we could see what kind of potential awaits him, but it seems like every step forward in Markelle’s NBA journey is met by another roadblock. Hope the toe heals without issue and we see him back on the court soon.
Robert Williams sidelined 8-to-12 weeks following knee surgery
Celtics say Robert Williams underwent surgery on his left knee and will be sidelined 8-to-12 weeks.— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) September 23, 2022
I’ll be brief as our David Early covered this in more depth in his recent piece examining the bad turn the Boston Celtics’ offseason has taken. Maybe the Boston medical staff’s assurance that Williams wouldn’t worsen his knee by playing on it last postseason wasn’t wholly accurate? I’d be wondering that in his position.
CJ McCollum signs extension with Pelicans
New Orleans Pelicans guard CJ McCollum has agreed on a two-year, $64 million extension that’ll take him through 2025-2026, his agent Sam Goldfeder of @Excelbasketball tells ESPN. New deal ties McCollum to Pels for four years and $133M.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) September 24, 2022
While I appreciate McCollum’s bucket-getting prowess, I was never a fan of those Ben Simmons-McCollum rumors back in the day given how CJ’s defensive limitations hamstring your team, particularly in postseason play. Still, I’m not sure what else New Orleans would do, as you have to try to maximize the talent around Zion now and see what you have with him if he’s able to stay on the court. The amount of the contract will be just fine with the anticipated cap spike for the new TV/streaming deal in a few years.
Bojan Boganovic traded to Detroit
The Detroit Pistons are finalizing a trade to acquire Utah Jazz forward Bojan Bogdanovic for Kelly Olynyk and Saben Lee, sources tell ESPN.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) September 22, 2022
Bogdanovic was one of the last few pieces to grab while Danny Ainge strips the Utah roster down for parts in Operation Woeful for Wembanyama. The 33-year-old is a career 39.2 percent shooter from behind the arc at high volume (over six attempts per game each of the last three seasons with Utah). The Pistons have done a nice job supplementing Cade Cunningham and their other high-profile youngsters with some veteran help this offseason, and Bogdanovic is someone who might be able to secure them a bit of draft capital at the trade deadline if they want to pivot in that direction.
Jae Crowder’s time likely over in Phoenix
The 32-year-old Crowder is in the final year of his deal, set to make just under $10.2 million during the upcoming season. But for all the Sixers fans out there who have been clamoring for the team to bring yet another dawg into the fold, our Paul Hudrick is here to throw cold water in your face:
The Sixers are not in on Jae Crowder, according to a source. Obviously the Suns are aggressively trying to move him.— Paul Hudrick (@PaulHudrick) September 25, 2022
One NBA All-Star wouldn’t mind a reunion with his former teammate:
Russell Westbrook to come off the bench for Los Angeles?
There are no assurances that Russell Westbrook will be a starter for these Los Angeles Lakers, nor assurances that he’ll remain this season. Nevertheless, he promises this: “I’m all-in on whatever it takes for this team to win.” Story on ESPN+: https://t.co/FbaLqBJhAR— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) September 25, 2022
Ah, yes, I’m sure Russ will be happy as a clam riding pine. No way that could go badly. I suspect the Lakers are trying to maintain as much leverage as possible to keep quietly shopping Westbrook. If they’re serious about not wasting one of LeBron’s last few years, they should have made the deal with Indiana for Myles Turner and Buddy Hield weeks ago, in this writer’s humble opinion.