Here’s the Detroit Free Press reporting on one of the keys to the Pistons’ future:

Andre Drummond free throw shooting still an issue

Andre Drummond turns 22 next Monday.

The other important number for coach and president of basketball operations Stan Van Gundy is 50.

He’d like his big center to shoot 50% from the free throw line this upcoming season.

That might be a tall order for the 6-foot-11 man mountain, who has career averages of 12.1 points per game and 11.8 rebounds.

His rookie season Drummond shot 37.1% from the free throw line. In his second year he improved to 41.8%, however last year he took a step back at 38.9%. For his career he’s shooting just 39.7%.

Mother of Stanley Johnson passes away

Here’s Michigan Live reporting some very sad news about a Pistons rookie:

Mother of Stanley Johnson passes away

Stanley Johnson’s No. 1 fan won’t be around to watch him make his NBA debut for the Detroit Pistons this fall.

Johnson’s mother, Karen Taylor, was a professional basketball player herself who played a major role in her son becoming the Pistons first-round pick (eighth overall) in this year’s NBA draft.

But Johnson will make his NBA debut with a heavy heart after confirming in a tweet that his mother has died.

Nuggets sign rookie Emmanuel Mudiay

Nuggets sign rookie Emmanuel Mudiay

The Denver Nuggets have signed guard Emmanuel Mudiay to a multi-year contract, General Manager and Executive Vice President of Basketball Operations Tim Connelly announced today.

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

Mudiay, 6-5, 200, was selected by the Denver Nuggets with the 7th overall pick in the 2015 NBA Draft.

The Congolese native appeared in four games (all starts) for the Denver Nuggets at the 2015 Samsung Summer League in Las Vegas, averaging 12.0 points, 3.5 rebounds, 5.8 assists and 1.25 steals in 30.5 minutes per game. He was named to the Samsung All-NBA Summer League Second Team.

Mudiay, 19, played one season for the Guangdong Southern Tigers of the Chinese Basketball Association in 2014-15. He appeared in 12 games and averaged 18.0 points, 6.3 rebounds, 5.9 assists and 1.58 steals per game.

The Dallas Mavericks announced today they have signed 21st overall pick Justin Anderson.

All first round draft picks are guaranteed to receive a contract, assuming they wish to come to the NBA right away. So, this signing was expected.

Anderson (6-6, 228) impressed at the NBA Summer League in Las Vegas where he started all 6 six games for the Mavericks and averaged 17.5 points, 4.2 rebounds, 1.5 assists and 1.2 steals while shooting .434 from the floor, .385 from three-point range and .900 from the foul line.

The Rockville, Md., native played three years at Virginia leading the Cavaliers to two Atlantic Coast Conference regular season titles and just the second ACC Tournament Championship in school history. As a junior, he averaged 12.2 points, 4.0 rebounds and 1.7 assists while shooting .466 from the field, .452 from behind-the-arc and .780 from the foul line.

The versatile guard improved his three-point shooting from .294 (30-102) as a sophomore to an ACC-leading .452 (47-104) as a junior on his way to being named NABC All-America Third Team and All-ACC Second Team.

Clippers waive Jordan Hamilton

Clippers waive Jordan Hamilton

The L.A. Clippers announced today the team has waived forward Jordan Hamilton.

Hamilton appeared in 14 games with the Clippers last season, making two starts and averaging 2.7 points, 1.1 rebounds and 0.5 assists in 8.7 minutes.

The Los Angeles native originally signed a 10-day contract with the Clippers on Feb. 24, 2015. He has appeared in 140 career regular season games with Denver, Houston and the Clippers.

Video: Best Raptors plays of the year

The Toronto Raptors finished the 2014-15 regular season with a 49-33 record. Enjoy these video highlights of some of their best plays of the year:

Pelicans waive Toney Douglas

Pelicans waive Toney Douglas

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

Douglas, 6-2, 185, appeared in 12 games for New Orleans during the 2014-15 season, averaging 4.3 points and 2.0 assists in 14.8 minutes per game. Originally signed by the Pelicans on February 4, Douglas was waived on February 19 before subsequently re-signing with the team for the remainder of the season on March 24.

Drafted 29th overall out of Florida State in 2009 by the Los Angeles Lakers, Douglas has appeared in 309 career NBA games with New York, Houston, Sacramento, Golden State, Miami and New Orleans, averaging 7.6 points and 2.2 assists in 18.9 minutes per game.

Sixers trade Jason Thompson to Warriors

The Golden State Warriors have acquired forward/center Jason Thompson from the Philadelphia 76ers in exchange for forward Gerald Wallace, the team announced today. As part of the deal, Philadelphia also receives cash and draft considerations.

“We’re very happy to add Jason to our roster,” said Warriors General Manager Bob Myers. “He has a proven track record in this league and adds considerably to our team’s depth, which was a big key to our success last season and will be moving forward.”

Thompson, 29, owns career averages of 9.4 points, 6.9 rebounds and 1.1 assists in 26.5 minutes over 541 regular-season games (405 starts) in seven seasons with the Sacramento Kings, hitting 49.7 percent from the field. In 81 games last season (63 starts), he tallied 6.1 points and 6.5 rebounds in 24.6 minutes per contest. The 6’11” forward/center recorded seven double-doubles in 2014-15, including his first career 20/20 game when he tallied 23 points and a career-high 22 rebounds on Jan. 17 vs. the Clippers, one of only three players to post those numbers in a game last season (DeMarcus Cousins, Kenneth Faried).

Originally selected by the Kings with the 12th overall pick of the 2008 NBA Draft, Thompson appeared in more games in the Sacramento-era than any player in team history and ranks in the top-10 in several categories on the Kings’ all-time franchise leaderboard, including games played (eighth; 541), total rebounds (ninth; 3,746), offensive rebounds (third; 1,232), defensive rebounds (seventh; 2,514) and blocked shots (sixth; 394). The Rider University product has appeared in 541 of a possible 558 games (97%) during his seven-year NBA career. Thompson was traded to Philadelphia from Sacramento, along with Carl Landry and Nik Stauskas, on July 9, 2015.

Wallace, 33, was acquired by Golden State from Boston, along with Chris Babb, in exchange for David Lee on July 27. He owns career averages of 11.9 points, 5.8 rebounds, 2.1 assists, 1.44 steals and 29.7 minutes in 832 regular-season games (611 starts) over 14 NBA seasons with Sacramento, Charlotte, Portland, New Jersey/Brooklyn and Boston.

The Sacramento Kings have hired Chad Iske as associate head coach and John Welch, Anthony Carter, and Nancy Lieberman as assistant coaches, according to Kings Vice President of Basketball and Franchise Operations Vlade Divac. Iske, Welch, Carter and Lieberman join Corliss Williamson and Vance Walberg on George Karl’s staff.

Iske joins the Kings after the past two seasons with the Philadelphia 76ers. He spent the previous 14 seasons with the Denver Nuggets, including the last six as an assistant coach under Karl. While with the Nuggets, Iske oversaw the scouting of upcoming opponents and assisted Karl with game plan preparation.

Welch brings years of knowledge to the Kings after two seasons with the Brooklyn Nets. Welch came to Brooklyn in 2013 in the same capacity, following eight seasons as an assistant coach for the Denver Nuggets under Karl. Before joining the Nuggets, Welch spent two seasons as an assistant coach/workout coach for the Memphis Grizzlies.

Prior to his arrival in Memphis, he spent seven seasons as an assistant coach at Fresno State, serving under Head Coach Jerry Tarkanian. Welch joined Fresno State in 1995 and helped the Bulldogs to two consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances, six consecutive 20-win seasons and seven straight postseason appearances.

Carter joins the Kings after spending the 2013-14 and 2014-15 seasons as an assistant coach with the Austin Toros, the NBA D-League affiliate of the San Antonio Spurs.

In 14 NBA seasons, Carter suited up for the Miami Heat (1999-00 - 2000-03), San Antonio Spurs (2003-04), Minnesota Timberwolves (2004-05 - 2005-06), Denver Nuggets (2006-07 - 2010-11), New York Knicks (2010-11) and the Toronto Raptors (2011-12). In 623 career games, the Hawaii alum averaged 4.8 points, 2.1 rebounds and 3.8 assists in 19.6 minutes per game. Carter suited up in 39 playoff games, averaging 4.5 points, 2.5 rebounds, 3.2 assists and 18.0 minutes per contest.

A member of the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame (1996), Lieberman most recently coached the Texas Legends of the NBA D-League, an affiliate of the Dallas Mavericks, in 2009 and coached the team to a playoff appearance during the 2010-11 season. Lieberman was then named the team’s assistant general manager in 2011-12.

Prior to coaching, Lieberman won an Olympic Silver Medal (1976), won back-to-back AIAW National Championships in college with Old Dominion (1979, 1980) and was named an All-American at Old Dominion (1978, 1979, 1980).

Mavericks sign Jeremy Evans

Mavericks sign Jeremy Evans

The Dallas Mavericks announced today that they have signed free agent forward Jeremy Evans.

According to ESPN Dallas, the deal is a two-year veteran’s minimum contract with no option.

Evans (6-9, 200) played his first five seasons in Utah (2010-15) where he averaged 3.7 points, 2.7 rebounds and 10.8 minutes in 219 games (seven starts). He won the NBA’s Slam Dunk Contest at All-Star Weekend in 2012.

A native of Crossett, Ark., Evans played four seasons at Western Kentucky University. As a senior, he averaged 10.0 points and 6.9 rebounds in 34 games. He is the Hilltoppers’ all-time leader in blocks with 224. Evans was selected by Utah in the second round (55th overall pick) of the 2010 NBA Draft.

Sixers sign Richaun Holmes

The Philadelphia 76ers today announced they have signed rookie forward Richaun Holmes.

Holmes appeared in all three games for the Sixers in the 2015 Utah Jazz Summer League, averaging 10 points and five rebounds in just 17 minutes per game.

The 21-year-old spent his final three collegiate seasons at Bowling Green and was named Mid-American Conference Defensive Player of the Year and All-MAC First Team as a senior.

Holmes shot 55% for his career and left as Bowling Green’s all-time leader in blocks with 244. He became the first player in school history to record at least 1,000 points, 600 rebound and 200 blocks. Holmes also hit 18 3-pointers on 42% shooting as a senior after having 12 3FGM on 29% shooting his first two seasons with the Falcons.

James White signs with team in Croatia

Here’s Euroleague.net with news on James “Flight” White:

James White signs with team in Croatia

Cedevita Zagreb added experience and athleticism to its roster at once by signing James White. The high-flying small forward arrives from Russian side Unics Kazan. Last season White (2.01 meters, 32 years old) averaged 10 points and 4.9 rebounds per game in 10 Turkish Airlines Euroleague appearances. He also posted 13.4 points and 3.3 boards in 12 Eurocup games to help the club reach that competition’s semifinals and 9.0 points and 3.8 rebounds in the VTB United League as Unics advanced to the quarterfinals.

Hawks forward Mike Scott arrested

Here’s the Atlanta Journal Constitution reporting on some legal trouble for Hawks reserve Mike Scott, who last season 7.8 points and 2.9 rebounds in 16.5 minutes per game:

Hawks forward Mike Scott arrested

Hawks forward Mike Scott faces felony drug charges after he was arrested in Banks County on Thursday morning.

Scott, who just completed his third season with the Hawks, was arrested along with his brother, Antonn Imhotep Scott, for possession of marijuana and MDMA, known as Molly.

According to a report from the Banks County Sheriff’s office, deputies attempted to stop a Chevrolet Tahoe on Interstate 85 driven by Antonn Scott for following too closely to other vehicles at 9 a.m.

The vehicle failed to yield to police and reached a speed of up to 98 mph.

Pelicans hope to keep Norris Cole

Norris Cole is a good backup guard. And he has a cool haircut. Here’s the New Orleans Times Picayune reporting on the Pelicans, who hope to keep Cole on their squad. Last season in 28 games for New Orleans, Cole averaged 9.9 points and 3.2 assists in 24.4 minutes per outing:

Pelicans hope to keep Norris Cole

The Pelicans declined last week to withdraw their qualifying offer of $3 million to Cole. The chances for New Orleans to retain Cole improves as he remains unsigned. Most of the teams in the NBA have already made their most important deals in free agency.

At this point, the Pelicans’ qualifying could end up as the most money Cole may be offered on the open market in free agency. Although the Philadelphis 76ers have been one of the teams that have expressed interest, according to sources, the Pelicans can also match any offer Cole receives.

”Of course, I would love to see Norris back,” Pelicans forward Quincy Pondexter said earlier this week. ”I know that he’s trying to figure what’s best for himself and family. Norris is such a huge part of our team, a huge part of our success last year. I don’t think we make the run without him and so to have him back and have Jrue Holiday and Ryan Anderson healthy, I think it’s going to be a great year for our team.”

Here’s the Sacramento Bee reporting cool news on the women’s basketball front:

The Kings are expected to hire Nancy Lieberman, the 1996 Hall of Fame inductee and assistant general manager of the Dallas Mavericks’ D-League team, as an assistant coach.

“Definitely I’m going to offer her a job,” Kings vice president Vlade Divac said Thursday. “George (Karl) and I talked about bringing her back after she helped us at Summer League (in Las Vegas). She was terrific. She brings a different dimension. I think is a nice opportunity for her.”

Lieberman said Thursday she will accept the offer. Divac said he expects to make an announcement next week.

Thunder sign forward Josh Huestis

Thunder sign forward Josh Huestis

The Oklahoma City Thunder have signed forward Josh Huestis to a contract, it was announced today by Executive Vice President and General Manager Sam Presti.

“We are excited to add Josh to our roster as he allows us to continue to increase our depth through his athleticism and versatility,” Presti said. “Josh knows our culture and our organization as a result of his time with the Blue and we look forward to his continued development with the Thunder.”

Huestis (6-7, 230) joins the Thunder after spending the past season with the Oklahoma City Blue where he appeared in 44 games (43 starts) and averaged 10.3 points, 5.7 rebounds, 1.1 assists and 1.57 blocks (13th in NBADL) in 33.1 minutes per game.

The Thunder selected Huestis with the 29th overall pick in the 2014 NBA Draft.

The Great Falls, Mont. native spent four seasons at Stanford and averaged 7.5 points, 6.2 rebounds and 1.41 blocks in 135 career games. During both his junior and senior seasons, he was named to the Pac-12 Defensive Team and at the conclusion of his sophomore season, he received Pac-12 Defensive Team Honorable Mention honors.

Trail Blazers waive Brendan Haywood

Trail Blazers waive Brendan Haywood

The Portland Trail Blazers have waived center Brendan Haywood, it was announced today by President of Basketball Operations Neil Olshey.

Portland acquired Haywood, guard Mike Miller and two future second round draft picks from the Cleveland Cavaliers on July 27 in exchange for cash considerations.

According to the Oregonian, “the Blazers acquired Haywood on Monday, along with sharpshooter Mike Miller, in a trade with the Cleveland Cavaliers. Cleveland moved Haywood to shed his $10.5 million salary and gain luxury tax relief, and the Blazers — who acquired two second round draft picks in the deal — never planned to keep him on their roster.”

Mavericks sign center Salah Mejri

The Dallas Mavericks announced today that they have signed center Salah Mejri.

Mejri (7-2, 235) played in 34 games with Real Madrid last season and averaged 4.3 points and 2.1 rebounds in 8.6 minutes on the way to winning the Spanish League title. He increased those averages to 5.0 points, 2.6 rebounds and 10.3 minutes in eight Euroleague games as Real Madrid went on to also capture the Euroleague Championship with a win over Greek-power Olympiacos in the final game.

A native of Jendouba, Tunisia, Mejri was a member of the Tunisian National Team that competed in the 2012 Summer Olympics in London. The team secured its bid to the London Olympics by winning the 2011 FIBA African Championships where Mejri was named Most Valuable Player.

Knicks waive Ricky Ledo

Knicks waive Ricky Ledo

New York Knicks President Phil Jackson announced today that the team has waived guard Ricky Ledo.

Ledo, 6-7, 195-pounds, averaged 7.4 points, 2.8 rebounds and 1.5 assists over 19.4 minutes in 12 games with New York last season. He signed the first of two consecutive 10-day contracts on Mar. 19 and then signed for the remainder of the season on Apr. 8.

Knicks re-sign Lou Amundson

Knicks re-sign Lou Amundson

New York Knicks President Phil Jackson announced today that the team has re-signed forward Lou Amundson to a contract.

Amundson, 6-9, 225-pounds, was acquired this past season as part of a three-way deal with the Cleveland Cavaliers and the Oklahoma City Thunder on Jan. 5, 2015 and signed his first 10-day contract with New York on Jan. 10, 2015. The Ventura, CA-native averaged 6.0 points, 6.0 rebounds and 1.3 blocks in 41 games for the Knicks in 2014-15. The nine-year NBA pro holds career averages of 3.8 points and 3.7 rebounds over 399 games.

He’ll mostly provide frontcourt depth off the bench and will likely play fairly limited minutes.

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