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The Oklahoma City Thunder has acquired a 2016 protected second round draft pick from the New Orleans Pelicans in exchange for guard Ish Smith, a 2015 protected second round pick, the rights to Latavious Williams and cash considerations, Thunder Executive Vice President and General Manager Sam Presti announced today.

Smith appeared in 30 games this season with the Thunder and averaged 1.2 points and 0.9 assists in 5.2 minutes per game. He owns career averages of 2.7 points, 1.9 assists and 1.1 rebounds in 221 career games (eight starts).

UPDATE: The New Orleans Pelicans announced today that the team has waived guard Ish Smith, who was acquired by New Orleans earlier in the day from Oklahoma City, along with the rights to Latavious Williams, cash considerations and draft considerations.

Pelicans waive Toney Douglas

The New Orleans Pelicans announced today that the team has waived guard Toney Douglas.

Douglas, 6-2, 185, appeared in three games for New Orleans, averaging 9.0 points, 4.0 assists, 2.3 rebounds and 1.3 steals in 22.0 minutes per game. Prior to joining the Pelicans, Douglas played for the Jiangsu Dragons of the Chinese Basketball Association, appearing in 35 games while averaging 19.1 points, 4.8 rebounds, 3.3 assists and 2.1 steals. Drafted 29th overall out of Florida State in 2009 by the Los Angeles Lakers, Douglas had appeared in 297 career NBA games with New York, Houston, Sacramento, Golden State and Miami, averaging 7.8 points, 2.2 rebounds and 2.2 assists.

New Orleans’ roster now stands at 13.

The Golden State Warriors have signed forward James Michael McAdoo for the remainder of the season, the team announced today.

McAdoo, 22, has appeared in four games with Golden State this season, averaging 3.5 points and 1.3 rebounds in 5.0 minutes. He originally signed with the Warriors on a 10-day contract on January 19 and signed a second 10-day contract with Golden State on February 2.

The University of North Carolina product has appeared in 26 games (24 starts) with the Santa Cruz Warriors of the NBA Development League this season, averaging 19.3 points (12th in the D-League), 9.2 rebounds, 2.0 assists, 2.12 steals (third) and 2.31 blocks (fifth) in 33.0 minutes while hitting 57.8 percent from the field.

McAdoo, who was not selected in the 2014 NBA Draft, originally signed with the Warriors on September 2, 2014. He appeared in five preseason games before being waived on October 24, 2014.

McAdoo will wear uniform #20.

Washington Wizards President Ernie Grunfeld announced today that the team has acquired guard Ramon Sessions from Sacramento in exchange for guard Andre Miller.

“Ramon is a proven veteran who will bring an up-tempo style to our second unit and give us quickness, energy and defensive presence,” said Grunfeld. “He can make plays for himself as well as others and will help to solidify our bench as we head into the final 28 games of the season and the playoffs.”

Sessions (6-3, 190) holds career averages of 11.3 points, 4.5 assists and 2.9 rebounds in 503 career games (134 starts) in seven-plus years with six teams. He has shot .435 from the field and .797 from the line. The 56th overall pick in the 2007 NBA Draft has averaged 5.4 points, 2.7 assists and 1.9 rebounds in 36 games (seven starts) with Sacramento this season. In seven games as a starter this season, he averaged 9.6 points, 4.0 assists and 3.3 rebounds. Sessions enjoyed his best season during the 2012-13 campaign when he averaged 14.4 points, 3.8 assists and 2.8 rebounds in 61 games with Charlotte. In 12 career playoff games with the Los Angeles Lakers, he holds averages of 9.7 points, 3.6 assists and 3.0 rebounds.

Miller was originally acquired by Washington on February 20, 2014, in a three-team trade with Denver and Philadelphia. In 79 games with Washington in parts of two seasons, Miller averaged 3.7 points and 3.0 assists (including 3.6 points and 2.8 assists in 51 games this season).

“Andre was a consummate professional during his time with the Wizards and gave us great veteran leadership,” said Grunfeld.  “We wish him and his family the best.”

Nuggets trade JaVale McGee to Sixers

The Denver Nuggets have traded center JaVale McGee, a protected 2015 first round pick (via Oklahoma City) and the rights to Chukwudiebere Maduabum to Philadelphia in exchange for the right to Cenk Akyol, General Manager and Executive Vice President of Basketball Operations Tim Connelly announced today.

Akyol, 27, was originally drafted by the Hawks with the 59th overall selection in the second round of the 2005 NBA Draft. The 6-6 guard from Turkey plays for Galatasaray of the Turkish Basketball League and has averaged 6.2 points and 1.6 rebounds in 16.9 minutes per game this season.

McGee appeared in 17 games for Denver this season, averaging 5.2 points, 2.8 rebounds and 1.1 b locks in 11.5 minutes per contest. He had appeared in a total of 121 games (10 starts) in four seasons with the Nuggets, averaging 8.6 points, 4.6 rebounds and 1.8 blocks in 17.5 minutes.

Maduabum was selected by the Los Angeles Lakers with the 56th overall pick in the 2011 NBA Draft before his rights were traded to Denver in a draft-night deal. He most recently appeared in four games for the Fort Wayne Mad Ants of the NBA Development League and seven games for Tallinna Ulikool/Kalev of the Estonian Basketball League.

Nuggets trade Arron Afflalo to Blazers

The Portland Trail Blazers have acquired guard Arron Afflalo and forward Alonzo Gee from the Denver Nuggets in exchange for guard Will Barton, forward Victor Claver, forward Thomas Robinson and a lottery-protected 2016 first round draft pick, President of Basketball Operations Neil Olshey announced today.

If Portland’s 2016 first round draft pick is not conveyed to Denver, it will move to a 2017 lottery-protected first round pick. If that pick is not conveyed, the Nuggets will receive two future second round picks.

“Arron is a proven winner with playoff experience who will be easily integrated into our culture,” said Olshey. “He possesses a skill set that complements our style of play on both ends of the floor and will make an immediate impact as we continue our playoff push. Alonzo is an elite athlete and defender who adds a unique element to our perimeter.

“We thank Thomas, Will and Victor for their contributions to the team and wish them all the best for the future.”

Afflalo, 29, is averaging 14.5 points (42.8% FG, 33.7% 3-PT, 84.1% FT), 3.4 rebounds and 1.9 assists in 53 games (all starts) for the Nuggets this season. A 6-5, 215-pound wing, Afflalo holds career averages of 11.5 points (45.5% FG, 38.4% 3-PT, 81.8% FT), 3.0 rebounds and 2.0 assists in 552 games (413 starts) over eight seasons with Detroit, Denver and Orlando.

Gee, 27, is posting averages of 4.9 points (48.2% FG, 41.7% 3-PT, 73.8% FT), 1.8 rebounds and 0.5 assists this season with Denver. Gee (6-6, 225) has career averages of 7.5 points (42.4% FG, 33.3% 3-PT, 77.0% FT), 3.4 rebounds and 1.1 assists in 316 games (173 starts) over six seasons with Washington, San Antonio, Cleveland and Denver.

Barton averaged 3.8 points, 1.7 rebounds and 0.8 assists in his two-plus seasons (144 games) with the Trail Blazers after being selected by Portland with the 40th overall pick in the second round of the 2012 NBA Draft.

In parts of three seasons with the Trail Blazers, Claver averaged 3.2 points, 2.2 rebounds and 0.7 assists in 80 games. Portland selected him with the 22nd overall pick in the 2009 NBA Draft out of Valencia, Spain.

Robinson averaged 4.4 points (49.0% FG), 4.3 rebounds, 0.4 assists and 0.30 blocks per game in parts of two seasons with the Trail Blazers after being acquired in a July of 2013 trade with Houston.

The Utah Jazz announced today the team has acquired rookie forward Grant Jerrett, the rights to German center Tibor Pleiss, center Kendrick Perkins and a future first-round pick from Oklahoma City, as well as a 2017 second-round pick from the Detroit Pistons as part of a three-team trade.  As part of the deal, the Jazz traded center Enes Kanter and forward Steve Novak to Oklahoma City, who also received guard D.J. Augustin and forward Kyle Singler from Detroit while sending the Pistons guard Reggie Jackson.

“This trade allowed us to add assets while helping to maintain flexibility for the future,” said Jazz General Manager Dennis Lindsey.  “Trades like this are never easy, but we thank Enes and Steve for their contributions to the team and in the community and wish them well as they move forward in their careers.”

Jerrett (6-10, 232, Arizona) has seen action in five games as a reserve for Oklahoma City this season, recording 1.4 points in 5.0 minutes per contest.  The 21-year-old rookie forward has also appeared in 10 games while on assignment with the Thunder’s NBA Development League affiliate, the Oklahoma City Blue, averaging 14.6 points, 5.5 rebounds and 1.1 assists in 25.5 minutes.  He spent the 2013-14 season with the Thunder’s D-League affiliate, where he saw action in 27 games and averaged 15.1 points and 6.1 rebounds in 29.2 minutes per contest.  Originally selected in the second round (40th overall) of the 2013 NBA Draft by the Portland Trail Blazers, Jerrett played one season at the University of Arizona after being named a 2012 McDonald’s All-American and to the Jordan Brand Classic as a senior in high school.

Pleiss (7-1, 262, Germany) was originally selected by the New Jersey Nets in the second round (31st overall pick) in the 2010 NBA Draft.  His rights were then traded to the Atlanta Hawks before eventually being moved to Oklahoma City.  The 25-year-old Pleiss currently plays for FC Barcelona, where he joined the club after averaging a career-high 12 points in addition to 5.4 rebounds with Laboral Kutxa Vitoria in Spain.  A member of the German Men’s Senior National Team, Pleiss began his career with Brose Baskets in Germany.

Perkins (6-10, 270, Clifton J. Ozen High School (TX)) is a 12-year-veteran who holds career averages of 5.6 points, 6.0 rebounds and 1.1 assists in 22.6 minutes in 727 games (560 starts) with the Thunder and Boston Celtics.  Originally selected in the first round (27th overall) of the 2003 NBA Draft by Memphis, Perkins has appeared in 51 games (three starts) for the Thunder this season, averaging 4.0 points and 5.5 rebounds in 19.2 minutes.

Kanter appeared in 49 games for the Jazz this season, averaging 13.8 points and 7.8 rebounds in 27.1 minutes.  Novak averaged 2.2 points and 0.7 rebounds in 22 games.

The Memphis Grizzlies signed free agent forward JaMychal Green to a second 10-day contract, Grizzlies General Manager Chris Wallace announced today.

Green (6-9, 220) initially was signed by Memphis to a 10-day contract as a Call-Up from the Austin Spurs of the NBA Development League on Feb. 2. He has averaged 4.0 points and 2.5 rebounds in 6.5 minutes in two appearances for Memphis, scoring eight points on 3-of-3 shooting in his Grizzlies debut on Feb. 6 at Minnesota. Green has averaged 2.7 points and 1.8 rebounds in 6.3 minutes in six games for Memphis and San Antonio in his rookie NBA season.

The 24-year-old averaged 23.0 points on .577 shooting, 10.9 rebounds, 2.5 assists and 1.55 blocks in 31.8 minutes in 20 games (all starts) this season with Austin. Green, who was named NBA D-League Player of the Month for games in December, ranked sixth in the D-League in scoring and rebounding per game and tied for seventh in double-doubles (15) before his Call-Up to the Grizzlies (among players with at least 10 games played).

Undrafted in the 2012 NBA Draft, the Montgomery, Ala. native averaged 13.5 points, 7.4 rebounds and 1.72 blocks in 123 games over four seasons at the University of Alabama. He played 25 games for Chorale Roanne of the LNB Pro A League in France during the 2013-14 season.

Kevin Durant supports idea of fewer back-to-backs

Here’s the New York Post reporting Kevin Durant’s approval of the possablity that the league schedule will someday present fewer back-to-back games. Safe to say the vast majority of players would agree with this:

Kevin Durant supports idea of fewer back-to-backs

Durant is in favor of NBA Commissioner Adam Silver’s pledge to try and eliminate four games in five nights and greatly reduce back-to-backs in the NBA’s regular-season schedule.

“Yeah, it’s nice,” said Durant, who had just three points on 1-for-6 shooting in 10 minutes. “As much as we can get rest and still be at a high level, it’s always cool for us.

“But we’re all gamers in this league and everybody likes to play, so whatever schedule they put out is what we have to do.”

Former UNLV basketball coach Jerry Tarkanian has died

Legendary basketball coach Jerry Tarkanian, who took the Runnin’ Rebels to four Final Fours and brought home the national championship in 1990, passed away Wednesday, Feb. 11, 2015, in Las Vegas. He was 84.

A campus memorial event is being planned. Details will be announced soon.

“The UNLV community mourns the passing of Coach Jerry Tarkanian, and our condolences are with Jerry’s wife, Lois, and the Tarkanian family,” said UNLV President Len Jessup.

“Coach Tarkanian’s contribution to UNLV and Southern Nevada stretches far beyond the game of basketball. Many in Southern Nevada and around the nation were introduced to UNLV through Coach Tarkanian and the Runnin’ Rebels. He made Runnin’ Rebel basketball a brand name during his 19 years on campus, inspiring our community and creating a legacy that endures to this day. He will be deeply missed though fondly remembered as a college basketball icon and as one of the greats in our university’s history.”

Current UNLV men’s basketball head coach Dave Rice was both a player and coach under Tarkanian. He said, “The qualities that make UNLV a great university - opportunity, self-determination and equality - are the same qualities that coach Tarkanian ingrained in his teams. The impact of coach’s contributions to our university, our community, his players and all of college basketball, is immeasurable.”

Rice added, “He instilled in me a confidence and commitment to doing what I believe is right for all people I am around. He saw something in me and gave me my first opportunity in coaching and I will be forever grateful. He will always be a part of UNLV, and our university is a better institution because of that. We are all saddened by this loss, our deepest condolences to the Tarkanian family.”

– Via UNLV Basketball

Hawks trade Adreian Payne to Timberwolves

Hawks trade Adreian Payne to Timberwolves

The Minnesota Timberwolves today announced the team has acquired forward/center Adreian Payne from Atlanta for a protected future first round draft pick.

“We are extremely excited to welcome Adreian to Minnesota,” said Timberwolves head coach Flip Saunders. “Adreian fits the mold of a young, athletic and talented player who we believe will fit in well with our young and talented core. We’ve liked him for a while and look forward to seeing him grow with us in a Wolves uniform.”

According to the Atlanta Journal Constitution, “the move opens up a roster spot for the Hawks, who were at the maximum of 15. The Hawks have spoken to representatives of free agent Ray Allen, who is expected to make a decision soon on whether and where he will play this season.”

Payne, 23, was selected by Atlanta with the 15th overall pick in the 2014 NBA Draft. He’s appeared in three games with the Hawks this season, averaging 1.7 points and 1.3 rebounds in 6.3 minutes per game. Payne has appeared in 17 games between the Fort Worth Mad Ants and Austin Spurs in the NBA D-League, averaging 12.9 points, on 48.3% shooting, 8.5 rebounds and 2.1 assists in 27.2 minutes per game.

Drafted out of Michigan State, Payne averaged 16.4 points on 50.3% shooting (42.3% from three-point range) and 7.3 rebounds per game as senior in 2013-14 with the Spartans. His play earned him Second-Team All-Big Ten and Honorable Mention Associated Press All-American. Payne finished his collegiate career as one of just nine players in MSU history with 1,200+ points and 700+ rebounds, as well as wrapping up his career as the school’s all-time leader in blocked shots.

Pelicans sign Toney Douglas to 10-day contract

The New Orleans Pelicans announced today that the team has signed guard Toney Douglas to a 10-day contract.

Douglas, 6-2, 185, most recently played for the Jiangsu Dragons of the Chinese Basketball Association, appearing in 35 games while averaging 19.1 points, 4.8 rebounds, 3.3 assists and 2.1 steals. Drafted 29th overall out of Florida State in 2009 by the Los Angeles Lakers, Douglas has appeared in 297 career NBA games with New York, Houston, Sacramento, Golden State and Miami, averaging 7.8 points, 2.2 rebounds and 2.2 assists.

Douglas will be available for tonight’s game against Oklahoma City. He will wear #16 for the Pelicans. New Orleans’ roster now stands at 14.

Hornets sign Elliot Williams to 10-day contract, waive Jannero Pargo

Hornets sign Elliot Williams to 10-day contract, waive Jannero Pargo

Charlotte Hornets General Manager Rich Cho announced today that the team has signed guard Elliot Williams to a 10-day contract and waived guard Jannero Pargo. Williams joins the Hornets from the Santa Cruz Warriors of the NBA D-League, becoming the 30th Call-Up this season. He will wear No. 4. The Hornets roster remains at 15 players.

The 6-5 Williams has seen action in 19 games for the Warriors this season, averaging 20.1 points, 7.6 assists, 4.3 rebounds and 1.3 steals in 36.3 minutes. He ranks fourth in the D-League in assists, tied for eighth in scoring and 10th in minutes played. Williams has scored in double figures in all 19 games and has handed out 10 or more assists five times, tallying five double-doubles. He has scored 20 points or more 10 times, including eight straight games from Nov. 28-Dec. 20.

Williams earlier this season signed a pair of 10-day contracts with the Utah Jazz, where he saw action in five games and averaged 3.6 points in 8.4 minutes.

Williams was initially selected with the 22nd overall pick in the 2010 NBA Draft by the Portland Trail Blazers, playing one season with the team in 2011-12 after missing the entire 2010-11 season due to a pair of knee surgeries. He has played in 96 career NBA games with the Trail Blazers, 76ers and Jazz, with career averages of 5.3 points 1.6 rebounds and 0.9 assists in 14.0 minutes.

Pargo originally signed with Charlotte on March 14, 2013. He played in a total of 56 games for the franchise, averaging 5.9 points and 1.7 assists in 10.8 minutes. Pargo saw action in nine games for the Hornets this season, his 11th in the NBA, averaging 4.6 points in 8.1 minutes. He missed the last 19 games due to low back soreness.

Tony Wroten undergoes knee surgery

Philadelphia 76ers guard Tony Wroten underwent successful surgery to repair the partially torn anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee earlier today. The procedure was performed by Dr. James R. Andrews of the Andrews Institute in Gulf Breeze, Florida.

The Sixers will now work with Tony, his representatives and the team’s medical and sports performance staff to put in place a comprehensive recovery plan which outlines his next steps.

The Los Angeles Clippers have signed guard Dahntay Jones for the remainder of the season.

Jones, 34, has appeared in nine games for Los Angeles and is averaging 0.4 points, 0.1 rebounds and 0.2 steals in 3.2 minutes. He originally signed with the Clippers on Jan. 14, the first of two consecutive 10-day contracts.

Jones, who was the 16th GATORADE call-up of the 2014-15 season, appeared in 19 games (15 starts) for the Fort Wayne Mad Ants of the NBA Development League and averaged 14.4 points, 3.4 rebounds and 1.7 assists in 29.2 minutes.

A 10-year NBA veteran who has appeared in 597 career games (157 starts), has averaged 5.6 points, 1.8 rebounds and 0.9 assists in 16.2 minutes with Memphis, Sacramento, Denver, Indiana, Dallas, Atlanta and Los Angeles.

Originally drafted by the Boston Celtics with the 20th overall pick in the first round of the 2003 NBA Draft, Jones was traded to Memphis on Draft Day and spent four seasons with the Grizzlies.

A New Jersey native, the 6-foot-6 inch guard/forward played two seasons at Rutgers before transferring to Duke for his junior and senior season, where he and Clippers guard J.J. Redick were teammates during the 2002-03 season.

Today, adidas unveiled the Futurestar Boost basketball shoe, a new model that the company says pays homage to the iconic adidas Pro Model.

Designed in tandem with the 2015 NBA All-Star uniforms, adidas says that the Futurestar Boost design is inspired by the attitude and culture of New York City basketball, music and fashion.

The InsideHoops.com take is, these look cool. A simple, clean color scheme.

The Boston Celtics announced today that they have signed guard Andre Dawkins to a second 10-day contract.

Dawkins, a 6’4” guard was signed to his first 10-day with the Celtics on January 23. He has appeared in four games for the Maine Red Claws of the NBA Development League since he was signed and has averaged 20.0 points, 2.8 rebounds, 2.8 assists and 1.8 steals in 39.4 minutes per game while shooting 37.7 percent from three-point territory.

Andre Emmett named D-League Player of Month for January, 2015

Fort Wayne Mad Ants forward Andre Emmett was today named NBA Development League Player of the Month for games played in January. The award is the first monthly honor for Emmett, who was named NBA D-League Performer of the Week on Jan. 19.

Emmett (6-5, 224, Texas Tech) led the Mad Ants to a 10-2 month in January, including an eight-game win streak to begin the month. Emmett scored more than 20 points in all 12 games, recording four games with 30-or-more points. He posted a 26-point, 11-rebound double-double in a 114-103 road win over the Delaware 87ers on Jan. 10. In January, Emmett averaged 27.3 points on 52 percent shooting from the floor to go with 6.4 rebounds and 2.6 assists.

For the season, Emmett is averaging 21.5 points on 52.5 percent shooting from the field to go with 4.9 rebounds, 2.5 assists and 32.1 minutes.

Other players receiving consideration for the monthly award were Austin’s Bryce Cotton, Bakersfield’s Archie Goodwin, Delaware’s DJ Seeley, Iowa’s Damien Wilkins, Los Angeles’ Vander Blue, Maine’s Tim Frazier, Rio Grande Valley’s Clint Capela, Reno’s Jordan Hamilton, Santa Cruz’s James Michael McAdoo and Sioux Falls’ Shawn Jones.

Grizzlies sign Tyrus Thomas to 10-day contract

The Memphis Grizzlies have signed free agent forward Tyrus Thomas to a 10-day contract as a Call-Up from the Grizzlies’ NBA Development League affiliate, the Iowa Energy, according to Grizzlies General Manager Chris Wallace.

Thomas (6-10, 225) has averaged 14.5 points, 7.0 rebounds and 2.00 blocks in 26.9 minutes while shooting .588 from the field in two games with Iowa this season. The 28-year-old scored a D-League season-high 15 points in his Energy debut on Jan. 16 at Delaware and posted a double-double with 13 points and 10 rebounds on Jan. 18 vs. Erie.

Drafted by the Portland Trail Blazers in the first round (fourth overall) of the 2006 NBA Draft, Thomas holds NBA career averages of 7.7 points, 4.8 rebounds and 1.31 blocks in 19.8 minutes in 400 games (129 starts) over seven seasons with the Chicago Bulls and Charlotte Bobcats (now Hornets). A native of Baton Rouge, La., Thomas led Louisiana State University to the 2006 NCAA Final Four as a freshman in his lone season with the Tigers.

Al Horford

Atlanta Hawks center Al Horford and Minnesota Timberwolves guard Mo Williams today have won the NBA Eastern and Western Conference Players of the Week award, respectively, for games played Monday, Jan. 12, through Sunday, Jan. 18.

Horford appeared in three-of-four games during the Hawks’ 4-0 week. He averaged 21.7 points on a league-leading .844 (27-of-32) shooting percentage, and added 8.0 rebounds and 6.3 assists. He posted a triple-double with 21 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists during a 105-87 win over the Philadelphia 76ers on Jan. 13. On Jan. 16, Horford shot 8-of-8 from the floor en route to a 22-point night as the Hawks beat the Toronto Raptors 110-89.

mo williams

Williams helped the Timberwolves to a 2-1 week behind averages of 30.3 points (third in the NBA), 6.3 assists (sixth in the Western Conference) and 39.8 minutes (third in the NBA). Both of Minnesota’s wins came on the road. Williams erupted for an NBA season-high 52 points on Jan. 13 during a 110-101 win over the Indiana Pacers.

Other nominees for the Eastern and Western Conference Players of the Week were Charlotte’s Bismack Biyombo, Cleveland’s LeBron James, Detroit’s Brandon Jennings, Golden State’s Stephen Curry, Los Angeles Clippers’ Matt Barnes and Blake Griffin, Memphis’ Zach Randolph, and Miami’s Chris Bosh.

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