Trail Blazers sign Steve Blake

Trail Blazers sign Steve Blake

The Portland Trail Blazers have signed free agent guard Steve Blake, it was announced today by General Manager Neil Olshey. Reports say the contract is for two years and between $4 and $4.2 million total.

Blake, 34, has averaged 6.9 points (40.3% FG, 38.8% 3-PT, 78.3% FT), 2.2 rebounds and 4.0 assists with Washington, Portland, Milwaukee, Denver, L.A. Clippers, L.A. Lakers and Golden State.

“Steve is the consummate gamer,” said Olshey. “His natural leadership skills, ability to run a team and offensive skill set are a natural fit for our roster composition and style of play.”

Blake returns to the Trail Blazers for a third time during his NBA career after playing in Portland during the 2005-06 season and again from 2007-10. He signed with Portland as a free agent on each occasion, and was last traded from Portland on Feb. 16, 2010, in a deal that also sent Travis Outlaw to the Clippers in exchange for Marcus Camby.

In 269 games (232 starts) over four seasons with the Trail Blazers, Blake holds averages of 8.9 points (42.0% FG, 40.8% 3-PT, 79.4% FT), 2.3 rebounds and 4.7 assists. He notched career highs of 11.0 points per game and a 42.7 percent mark from 3-point range in 2008-09, his last full season with Portland.

“Steve is the perfect fit for our team,” said Trail Blazers Head Coach Terry Stotts. “He brings experience, toughness, leadership, shooting and consistent defense. Steve will be a complement to our backcourt and provide mentorship for our young players.”

Blake (6-3, 172) played four years at the University of Maryland and was selected by the Wizards with the ninth pick in the second round (38th overall) of the 2003 NBA Draft.

Cavs sign Kyrie Irving to contract extension

The Cleveland Cavaliers announced today that the team and Kyrie Irving have agreed upon and signed a contract extension. Per multiple reports, the deal is a maximum-level extension for five years and approximately $90 million.

“We couldn’t be happier to have Kyrie firmly at the core of our Cavaliers team and family for years to come,” said Cavaliers General Manager David Griffin. “He’s already proven he’s among the best in the NBA and we’re excited to watch his continued growth and success. To know that he is all in and shares our high expectations and championship goals is something we’re extremely proud of. It is a clear reflection of how we all view our future together, with Kyrie fully vested in this franchise and the city of Cleveland.”

Irving was the first overall pick in the 2011 draft by the Cavaliers and has career averages of 20.7 points, 3.7 rebounds, 5.8 assists and 1.4 steals in 33.7 minutes through 181 games with the team. An NBA All-Star in each of the past two seasons, Irving was MVP of the 2014 All-Star Game where he became the second-youngest player to win the award. Since Irving, the 2011 NBA Rookie of the Year, entered the league, he has the third highest scoring average among all NBA point guards. In 2013-14, he led all Eastern Conference point guards with 20.8 points, while also averaging 3.6 rebounds, 6.1 assists and 1.5 steals in 35.2 minutes per game. He was one of only six players in the NBA with averages of at least 20 points and six assists per game last season.

“We are excited that Kyrie has officially committed to be here long-term with the Cleveland Cavaliers,” said Cavs Majority Owner Dan Gilbert. “The future has never been brighter as we are building the team and franchise for sustainable success. Kyrie is obviously a very big piece of our plan.”

Trail Blazers sign Chris Kaman

Trail Blazers sign Chris Kaman

The Portland Trail Blazers have signed free agent center Chris Kaman, it was announced today by General Manager Neil Olshey. According to the Oregonian newspaper, the deal is for $9.5 million over two years. Other reports had the deal at $9.8 million.

Kaman, 32, holds career averages of 11.7 points (48.7% FG, 74.5% FT), 7.9 rebounds, 1.3 assists and 1.4 blocks in 11 seasons with the Los Angeles Clippers, New Orleans Pelicans, Dallas Mavericks and Los Angeles Lakers.

“We targeted Chris early in the process believing his offensive versatility and defensive presence would make for a quality addition to our front court,” said Olshey. “His skill set complements our returning roster players and we expect him to have an immediate impact.”

An NBA All-Star in 2010, Kaman averaged 10.4 points, 5.9 rebounds, 1.5 assists and 1.0 blocks for the Lakers last season.

“I am extremely pleased to add Chris to our roster,” said Trail Blazers Head Coach Terry Stotts. “He is a proven NBA talent and will both bolster and complement our front court at both ends of the floor.”

Kaman (7-0, 265) played collegiately at Central Michigan University and was selected by the Clippers with the sixth overall pick in the first round of the 2003 NBA Draft.

He will wear No. 35 for the Trail Blazers.

Video: Top plays from Orlando Day 5

Here are video highlights of top plays from summer league Day 5 (Wednesday, July 9) in Orlando:

Raptors trade Steve Novak to Jazz

Raptors trade Steve Novak to Jazz

The Utah Jazz announced today that the team has acquired forward Steve Novak and the rights to New York’s 2017 second round draft pick from the Toronto Raptors in exchange for guard Diante Garrett.

Novak (6-10, 235, Marquette), the sixth-most accurate three-pointer shooter in NBA history (min. 250 made), is an eight-year veteran who owns averages of 5.0 points and 1.4 rebounds in 13.0 minutes over 414 career games with Houston, L.A. Clippers, Dallas, San Antonio, New York and Toronto. His career .432 (548-1,268) three-point percentage is second only to Golden State’s Stephen Curry (.440) among all active players, while his career .892 free throw percentage would rank fourth if he had enough attempts to qualify.

Originally selected in the second round (32nd overall selection) of the 2006 NBA Draft by Houston, Novak led the NBA in three-point accuracy (.472) during the 2011-12 season, ranking third that season in three-point makes (133). Novak averaged 3.3 points and 1.1 rebounds in 10.0 minutes in 54 games last season with Toronto.

Prior to the NBA, Novak played four seasons at Marquette University from 2002-06, averaging 12.4 points and 4.2 rebounds over his four-year collegiate career. He still ranks as the Golden Eagles’ all-time career leader with 354 three-pointers (.461, 354-768), after finishing his college career as Marquette’s all-time free-throw percentage leader (.931, 243-261) and ranking 10th on the school’s all-time scoring list (1,567).

Garrett (6-4, 190, Iowa State) averaged 3.5 points, 1.4 rebounds and 1.7 assists in 14.8 minutes in 71 games last season with Utah. The Jazz signed Garrett from the NBA Development League’s Iowa Energy on November 13, 2013, making him the first NBA D-League Call-Up of the 2013-14 season.

Marcin Gortat re-signs with Wizards

Marcin Gortat re-signs with Wizards

Washington Wizards President Ernie Grunfeld announced today that the team has re-signed center Marcin Gortat. According to multiple reports, the contract is for $60 million over five years. That’s a pretty sizable investment, and more than Gortat was expected to receive.

“Re-signing Marcin was a top priority for us this summer so that we could maintain continuity and improve on what we accomplished last season,” said Grunfeld. “His scoring ability, rebounding and defensive presence are matched only by his work ethic, leadership and personality, which all combine to make him an excellent fit in what we are trying to build moving forward.”

Gortat averaged 13.2 points, 9.5 rebounds and 1.5 blocks in 33 minutes per game last season with the Wizards. He shot .542 from the field while appearing in a career-high-tying 81 games. The Polish native led the team with 37 double-doubles and was second in the NBA in double-doubles (20) after the All-Star break. He finished in the top 10 among centers in scoring, rebounding, field goal percentage, assists, blocks and double-doubles. Gortat had five games of 20+ points (including a career-high 31 at Toronto on 3/31) and 22 games of 12+ rebounds (including a career-high-tying 18 at Miami on 3/10).

In 11 playoff games last season, Gortat averaged 13.0 points, 9.9 rebounds and 1.3 blocks while shooting .492 from the field. He raised those averages to 14.8 points and 10.2 rebounds while shooting .578 from the field in the Eastern Conference Semifinals and notched new playoff career highs with 31 points and 16 rebounds in the Wizards’ Game Five win at Indiana.

In seven seasons with Orlando, Phoenix and Washington, Gortat holds career averages of 9.4 points, 7.3 rebounds and 1.2 blocks in 438 career games. He has shot .545 from the field while playing 24.2 minutes per game. He was acquired by the Wizards along with Shannon Brown, Malcom Lee and Kendall Marshall from Phoenix in exchange for Emeka Okafor and a protected 2014 first round pick on October 25, 2013. Gortat was originally selected with the 57th overall pick in the 2005 NBA Draft by Phoenix, who then traded his rights to Orlando for future considerations.

Charlotte Hornets General Manager Rich Cho announced today that the team has named Chad Buchanan Assistant General Manager.

“We are extremely excited to welcome Chad to our organization,” Cho said. “He is extremely organized and well prepared and will add another dimension to our basketball operations department with his extensive scouting and player evaluation experience. Chad is well respected throughout the NBA and I look forward to working closely with him as we look to continue to build and improve our basketball team.”

Buchanan comes to the Hornets after spending the last 10 years with the Portland Trail Blazers, including the last seven seasons as director of college scouting. In that role, he focused on all college, international and high school scouting, while also managing the development of the team’s scouting database, organizing pre-draft workouts and assisting in NBA player evaluation. Buchanan also served as the team’s acting general manager from 2011-12, where he was responsible for all player transactions, including the 2011 NBA Draft and free agency. He initially joined the Trail Blazers in 2004 as a scout before becoming director of college scouting in 2007.

Prior to the Trail Blazers, Buchanan spent five seasons as an assistant coach at Simpson College, his alma mater, from 1997-2002 and one season as an assistant coach at Drake University in 2003-04. In between, he served as assistant coach and assistant director of player personnel for the ABA’s Kansas City Knights in 2002-03.

Cavs trade Jarrett Jack to Nets

The Cleveland Cavaliers have acquired Boston’s 2015 second round pick (top 55 protected) as well as the rights to Ilkan Karaman and Edin Bavcic in a three-team trade that sends Jarrett Jack and Sergey Karasev to Brooklyn and Tyler Zeller and the Cavs’ 2016 top 10 protected first round pick to Boston, Cavaliers General Manager David Griffin announced today. As part of the three-team trade, Boston will also acquire guard Marcus Thornton from the Nets.

The Cavs want salary cap space in order to offer LeBron James a maximum-level NBA contract. In order to accomplish this, they needed to trade Jarrett Jack’s contract. That’s what this deal is all about, at least from Cleveland’s side of things.

The 2015 second round pick that Cleveland received from Boston is top 55 protected. If Boston does not convey its 2015 second round pick to Cleveland, Boston’s obligation to convey a second round pick to Cleveland as part of this trade will be extinguished. Cleveland’s 2016 first round pick to Boston is top 10 protected in 2016, 2017 and 2018 and, if not conveyed, will be unprotected in the 2019 draft.

The Cavs also receive the rights to forwards Ilkan Karaman and Edin Bavcic. Karaman, 24, was selected by the Brooklyn Nets with the 57th pick of the 2012 NBA Draft and most recently played in the Turkish Basketball League for Fenerbahçe Ülker. Bavcic, 30, who was originally selected by the Toronto Raptors as the 56th overall pick of the second round in the 2006 NBA Draft, currently plays for KAOD in Greece.

Zeller, a 7’0” center, appeared in 70 games for the Cavaliers last season where he averaged 5.7 points and 4.0 rebounds while shooting 53.8 percent from the field in 15.0 minutes per game. In his nine games as a starter Zeller averaged 9.0 points, 5.6 rebounds and 1.1 blocks in 21.6 minutes per game. The product of the University of North Carolina was originally selected with the 17th overall pick in the 2012 NBA Draft by the Dallas Mavericks before being traded to the Cavaliers on draft night. Zeller recorded a career-high 23 points to go along with six rebounds against the Houston Rockets on March 22 this season. He pulled down a career-high of 15 rebounds against Philadelphia to go along with 18 points in just 25 minutes on February 18. During his rookie season (2012-13) Zeller averaged 7.9 points, 5.7 rebounds and 0.9 blocks in 26.3 minutes per game and was named to the NBA’s All-Rookie Second Team while also participating in the BBVA Compass Rising Stars Challenge at All-Star Weekend.

Thornton, a 6’4” guard, split last season between the Brooklyn Nets and the Sacramento Kings where he averaged 9.8 points, 2.8 rebounds and 1.1 assists in 24.1 minutes per game. After being acquired by the Nets on February 19 he appeared in 26 games for Brooklyn and spiked his scoring average to 12.3 points while also averaging 2.8 rebounds per game. In those 26 games Thornton recorded double-figures in scoring 14 times and reached 20 or more points six times. Earlier in the season with Sacramento Thornton matched his career-high with a 42 point outburst against Indian on January 24 when he made seven three-pointers. Thornton has appeared in 341 career games between Brooklyn, Sacramento and New Orleans and has career averages of 13.4 points, 3.0 rebounds and 1.5 assists per game.

“Jarrett is a proven NBA veteran who will add versatility to our backcourt,” said General Manager Billy King. “The team had a need in that area and we are excited that we were able to secure Jarrett to fill that role. Sergey is a player who we have followed closely for several years. He is a versatile forward and will be a welcome addition to our roster.”

Jack, a nine-year NBA veteran, played 80 games (31 starts) last season for the Cleveland Cavaliers, where he averaged 9.5 points, 4.1 assists and 2.8 rebounds in 28.2 minutes per game. The 6′3″ guard has played in 691 career games for Portland, Indiana, Toronto, New Orleans, Golden State and Cleveland with career averages of 10.9 points, 4.3 assists and 2.8 rebounds per game. Originally drafted by Denver with the 22nd pick in the 2005 NBA Draft, Jack began his career in Portland, where he played his first three NBA seasons. The Georgia Tech product had his best statistical season in 2011-12 with New Orleans when he averaged career-highs of 15.6 points 6.3 assists and 3.9 rebounds per game. Jack has twice helped his team reach the postseason, playing in 18 total playoff games. As a member of the Golden State Warriors, Jack played in 12 postseason contests in 2012-13, making four starts. En route to helping the Warriors reach the Western Conference Semifinals, Jack posted averages of 17.2 points, 4.7 assists and 4.4 rebounds per game.

Karasev was drafted by the Cleveland Cavaliers with the 19th overall pick in the 2013 NBA Draft. The 6′7″ swingman out of Russia played in 22 games for the Cavaliers, averaging 1.7 points in 7.1 minutes per game. Karasev also appeared in 18 games for the Canton Charge of the NBA Development League last season, where he posted averages of 13.5 points, 5.0 rebounds and 2.4 assists per game. A member of the Russian national team, Karasev won bronze at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, and was a member of the gold medal winning team at the 2013 World University Games in Kazan. Prior to joining the NBA, Karasev played three seasons internationally with BC Triumph in Russia.

Hornets sign Gordon Hayward to offer sheet

Charlotte Hornets General Manager Rich Cho announced today that the team has extended an offer sheet to restricted free-agent forward Gordon Hayward. According to multiple reports, the deal is for $63 million over four years — a larger offer than anyone expected Hayward to get. In accordance with the NBA’s Collective Bargaining Agreement, Hayward’s current team, the Utah Jazz, will have three days to match the offer.

The 6-8 Hayward saw action in 77 games for the Jazz last year, averaging career highs of 16.2 points, 5.2 assists, 5.1 rebounds, 1.4 steals and 36.4 minutes. He led the team in scoring and minutes played, ranked second in assists and was tied for third in rebounds. In his fourth NBA season, Hayward posted career highs in nearly every statistical category, including games played (77), minutes (2800), points (1248), field goals (426), field goal attempts (1032), free throws (311), free throw attempts (381), total rebounds (391), offensive rebounds (62), defensive rebounds (329), assists (400) and steals (110).

Hayward scored in double figures 63 times, grabbed double-figure rebounds in seven games and handed out double-figure assists on six occasions, tallying nine double-doubles. He also recorded single-game career highs of 37 points (Jan. 7 vs. Oklahoma City), 13 rebounds (Dec. 13 at Denver) and 12 assists (Nov. 25 vs. Chicago) during the 2013-14 season.

The ninth overall pick in the 2010 NBA Draft, Hayward has played in 287 games during his four-year career, all with the Jazz. He has career averages of 12.0 points, 3.4 rebounds and 3.1 assists in 28.4 minutes, with shooting percentages of .436 from the field (1171-2684), .365 from beyond the three-point line (277-759) and .813 from the free-throw line (816-1004). He has scored in double figures 174 times, including 45 games of 20 points or more and four games of 30 points or more.

Toronto Raptors re-sign Kyle Lowry

Toronto Raptors re-sign Kyle Lowry

The Toronto Raptors announced Thursday they have re-signed free-agent point guard Kyle Lowry to a multi-year contract. According to multiple reports, the deal is for $48 million over four years.

“We made it known that our top priority heading into the offseason was to re-sign Kyle,” said Raptors President and General Manager Masai Ujiri. “He was a key to our success last season and we are delighted that he wants to be here in Toronto to help us continue to build a championship program.”

The eight-year veteran played a key role in leading the Raptors to a club record 48 wins and their second Atlantic Division title in team history.

Lowry, 6-foot, 205 pounds, posted career highs in points (17.9), rebounds (4.7), assists (7.4), field goals made (457), three-pointers made (190), three-point percentage (.380), free throws made (313) and minutes (36.2) in 79 contests, all starts, during the 2013-14 season. He ranked seventh in the NBA in assists per game and tied for eighth in three-pointers made.

Lowry paced the Raptors in scoring on 19 occasions and in assists in a team-high 61 outings. He scored in double figures 72 times with 35 games of 20-or-more points. He posted double-digit totals in assists in 19 contests. He became the fourth Raptors player to record two triple-doubles in the same season. Lowry had 39 games with multiple steals, including nine straight games from November 15 – December 3 where he averaged 2.6 per game.

Lowry registered a season-high 33 points January 29 versus Orlando, a career-best 12 rebounds at Minnesota on March 9 and a season-best 14 assists January 1 versus Indiana. He was named Eastern Conference Player of the Week for games played January 27 – February 2, leading the Raptors to a 3-1 mark while averaging 25.0 points, 8.0 assists and 5.0 rebounds. His averages of 18.3 points, 8.2 assists and 4.7 rebounds in January made him the only player in the Eastern Conference to average 18+ points and 8+ assists for the month.

In the Raptors’ first-round playoff series against Brooklyn, Lowry finished second on the club in scoring (21.1), assists (4.7) and minutes (38.8). He scored in double figures in all seven games, with four games of 20+ points. He totaled 22 points and added a series-best eight assists in Game 1 on April 19. He grabbed a personal-high nine rebounds in Game 2 on April 22 at Air Canada Centre. In a Game 5 victory at Air Canada Centre on April 30, Lowry record a game-high 36 points (11-19 FG, 6-9 3FG, 8-10 FT). He added 28 points (12-14 FT) with seven rebounds May 4 in Game 7.

The Raptors acquired Lowry from the Houston Rockets on July 11, 2012. In his two seasons in Toronto, Lowry has averaged 15.0 points, 4.7 rebounds, 6.9 assists, 1.5 steals and 33.2 minutes in 147 regular season games.

Lowry was a first-round selection (24th overall) by Memphis in the 2006 NBA Draft. He has appeared in 506 regular season games (270 starts), averaging 11.7 points, 3.8 rebounds, 5.4 assists, 1.2 steals and 28.8 minutes for Memphis, Houston and Toronto.

Clippers sign Jordan Farmar, Spencer Hawes

The Los Angeles Clippers announced today that they have signed free agent guard Jordan Farmar and center Spencer Hawes. We’ll add contract details to this page later on Thursday.

Hawes, 26, averaged 13.2 points, 8.3 rebounds and 3.0 assists in 80 games (28 starts) with the Cleveland Cavaliers and the Philadelphia 76ers during the 2013-14 season. The seven-year NBA veteran brings career averages of 9.7 points, 6.4 rebounds and 2.0 assists in 24.9 minutes in 500 games (346 starts) with the Sacramento Kings, Cavaliers and 76ers.

The Seattle native was originally drafted by the Kings with the 10th pick in the first round of the 2007 NBA Draft. The 7-foot-1 Hawes played one season at the University of Washington where he averaged 14.9 points, 6.4 rebounds and 1.9 assists in a total of 31 games. A star at Seattle Preparatory School in Washington, Hawes was a member of the 2006 McDonald’s All-American Team.

jordan farmar

Farmar, 27, joins the Clippers after spending the 2013-14 season with the Lakers, where he averaged 10.1 points, 4.9 assists and 2.5 rebounds in 41 games (five starts). The seven-year NBA veteran holds career averages of 7.9 points, 3.0 assists and 2.0 rebounds in 19.8 minutes in 454 games (30 starts) with the Lakers and New Jersey Nets. He won an NBA Championship in 2009 and 2010 with the Lakers.

The Los Angeles native was originally drafted by the by the Lakers with the 26th pick in the first round of the 2006 NBA Draft. Farmar attended UCLA for two seasons, averaging 13.3 points, 5.2 assists, and 3.0 rebounds in a total of 66 games. The guard excelled at Taft High School in Woodland Hills, California, averaging 27.5 points and 6.5 assists during his senior year. Farmar led Taft to the school’s first Los Angeles City title and went on to be a 2004 McDonald’s All-American.

Here’s the Bay Area News Group Blog reporting on the Golden State Warriors:

Harrison Barnes might have shot at starting job for Warriors

Warriors forward Harrison Barnes struggled last season to adjust to a bench role following the signing of Andre Iguodala, and he doesn’t deny that the whole situation bothered him.

“I got caught up in that last year,” Barnes said Wednesday after voluntarily practicing with the Warriors’ summer league team even though he isn’t on the roster. “I’m not really worried about that this year.”

New Warriors coach Steve Kerr appears to be wiping the slate clean, saying that the 22-year-old Barnes “absolutely” has a chance to earn a starting job in training camp after getting in the lineup in only 24 games last season.

“Andre was the starter last year, and he very well may be this year,” Kerr said of Iguodala, who made the NBA All-Defensive first team while his numbers on offense were down.

Steven Adams working on low-post game

Here’s the Oklahoman with an update on young Thunder big-man Steven Adams:

Steven Adams working on low-post game

But between trips to the foul line, Adams also will spend ample time down on the low block.

The Thunder throughout this week in Orlando has been working on Adams’ back-to-the-basket game, and if for whatever reason Pau Gasol passes up the Thunder, the team could turn to Adams to solve its longtime search for a low-post scoring threat.

“That’s exactly what we’re working on,” said Thunder assistant/summer league coach Darko Rajakovic. “We want to see Steven be able to get the ball on the low post more and create from there.”

Adams has all the tools to be successful.

At 7-feet, 250 pounds, he has ideal size and mixes that with strength, timing and footwork. He put all that and more on display throughout Wednesday’s game.

Here’s the Associated Press via the Star Tribune reporting on versatile small forward Chandler Parsons and the Mavs:

Mavericks will reportedly sign Chandler Parsons to offer sheet

The Dallas Mavericks have made a move at small forward, agreeing with restricted free agent Chandler Parsons on a three-year offer sheet worth more than $45 million.

Houston will now have to decide whether to match the offer.

Two people with knowledge of the situation said Wednesday night that Parsons agreed to the offer sheet with the Mavericks, while a third person confirmed the terms. The people commented to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the offer sheet can’t be officially signed until Thursday, when the NBA’s moratorium on signing free agents ends.

Here’s the Los Angeles Daily News Blog with an update on Knicks free agent star forward Carmelo Anthony:

No Carmelo Anthony free agency decision yet

When will Carmelo Anthony decide where he will play?

As of Wednesday night, a source close to Anthony insisted “there is no decision yet.” The source then added it is “still up in the air.”

Neither the Lakers nor the Knicks have been informed on where Anthony will play. But a New York Daily News report quoted an unnamed friend who said Anthony plans is expected to announce announce on Thursday that he re-signing with the Knicks.

Here’s the Charlotte Observer reporting on the Hornets. That’s right, the Hornets. There aren’t Bobcats around anymore. Not in NBA basketball, at least. Get used to it. The Hornets. Charlotte Hornets. Anyway, here:

Cody Zeller hopes Hornets do land Gordon Hayward

Would free-agent forward-guard Gordon Hayward be a good fit with the Charlotte Hornets?

No, Hornets forward Cody Zeller replied Wednesday; Hayward would be a “perfect” fit.

“I love his game. He plays really fundamental basketball, creates a lot for his teammates,” Zeller said following summer-league practice.

“(Passing is) one of his talents. And he shoots really well and he’s big for a guard. I think he’d be perfect for us.”

Hayward, 6-foot-8, who played his first four seasons with the Utah Jazz, has agreed to sign a four-year, $63 million offer sheet with the Hornets once the NBA’s moratorium on signings ends Thursday. The Observer reported the Hornets’ agreement with Hayward early Wednesday morning.

Jazz center Rudy Gobert adds muscle

Here’s the Salt Lake Tribune reporting on young Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert:

“You look taller,” somebody said.

“I’m just bigger,” Rudy Gobert responded with a smile.

The Jazz’s young center still stands at 7 feet, 2 inches Wednesday as he spoke with reporters following the team’s second day of summer league practices.

But entering his second season Gobert has packed on some extra muscle — and looks to be ready for a bigger role.

As a rookie last year, Gobert made 45 appearances, averaging 2.3 points, 3.4 rebounds and roughly one block in nine minutes a game.

Bucks sign first round draft pick Jabari Parker

The Milwaukee Bucks have signed first round draft pick Jabari Parker, General Manager John Hammond announced today.

All first round draft picks are guaranteed to receive a contract, assuming they want to begin their NBA career right away. Therefore, this signing is standard operating procedure, and was expected.

The second overall selection in the 2014 NBA Draft, Parker played one collegiate season at Duke University, where he was a consensus First Team All-America selection. While with the Blue Devils, Parker also earned honors as a First Team All-ACC member, ACC Rookie of the Year and USBWA National Freshman of the Year. His 19.1 points per game and 8.7 rebounds per game were both Top-50 in the nation, with the points per game average marking the fourth-highest effort ever by an ACC freshman. He is the fourth freshman in ACC history to lead the league in rebounding.

With 670 points and 306 rebounds, Parker became the 14th player in Duke history to record 600+ points and 300+ rebounds in the same season, and he is just the sixth ACC freshman to ever reach the 600-point plateau. He is also the first Duke freshman to lead the team in both scoring and rebounding. Parker posted a career-high 30 points (10-of-17, .588) to go along with 11 boards in a win vs. UNC on March 8. The 30-point effort was the most by a Duke freshman in the 238 games played in series history against the rival Tar Heels.

Additionally, Parker received First Team All-America honors from The Associated Press, NABC, USBWA, Sporting News and Sports Illustrated. Parker was a finalist for the Naismith Trophy, Oscar Robertson Trophy and John R. Wooden Award, and he was honored as the top freshman in the country through the Integris Wayman Tisdale Award by the USBWA. He was named ACC Rookie of the Week a record 10 times and was on the All-ACC Academic Team.

A native of Chicago, Parker attended Simeon Career Academy, where he led Simeon to four IHSA Class 4A state championships and averaged 18.4 points and 10.4 rebounds as a senior. He was named the 2013 Jordan Brand Classic Co-MVP, is a two-time Illinois Gatorade Player of the Year and Illinois Mr. Basketball winner, and was named National Gatorade Player of the Year as a junior. Parker has also played for USA Basketball, earning gold medals at the 2012 FIBA U17 World Championship and the 2011 FIBA Americas U16 Championship.

Raptors sign first round draft pick Bruno Caboclo

The Toronto Raptors announced Wednesday they have signed forward Bruno Caboclo (cuh-BO-clo) to his rookie scale contract. He is under contract through the 2015-16 season, with two team option years to follow. The Raptors selected the 18-year-old Brazilian with the 20th overall pick of the 2014 NBA Draft.

All first round NBA draft picks are guaranteed to receive a contract, assuming they wish to come to the NBA right away. Therefore, this signing is standard operating procedure, and was expected.

Caboclo, 6-foot-9, 205 pounds, was the Most Valuable Player at the 2013 Basketball Without Borders Americas. He played in 16 games this past season with Pinheiros (Sao Paulo) where he contributed 4.9 points and 3.1 rebounds. In three Liga Americas contests, he averaged 8.0 points shooting .714 from the field and .667 from three-point range.

Caboclo and the Raptors open their preliminary round in the 2014 Samsung NBA Summer League in Las Vegas on Friday, July 11 versus the Los Angeles Lakers at 3 p.m. (6 p.m. ET).

Here’s the Deseret News reporting on the Jazz summer league squad:

Former Utah State men’s basketball player Jarred Shaw will be a member of the Charlotte Hornets NBA Summer League roster.

The NBA Summer League will be held July 11-21 in Las Vegas, Nevada, at the Thomas and Mack Center and COX Pavilion on the UNLV campus. Each team will play no fewer than five games, including three preliminary games before beginning the seeded tournament on July 16.

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