Derrick Favors Reportedly Traded to Pelicans; Jazz Receive Draft Picks

Utah Jazz forward Derrick Favors (15) in the second half of an NBA basketball game Thursday, Feb. 28, 2019, in Denver. The Jazz won 111-104. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

David Zalubowski/Associated Press

Derrick Favors is headed to the New Orleans Pelicans as part of a trade with the Utah Jazz, per Tony Jones of The Athletic.

Jones added the Jazz will receive draft picks in exchange for the deal.

Favors has $16.9 million remaining on his deal for 2019-20, but the money was not guaranteed until July 6, per Spotrac.

The Jazz could have kept him, but they ran out of cap space after agreeing to a four-year, $73 million deal with Bojan Bogdanovic, per Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN. Bobby Marks of ESPN reported the team would have to trade or waive Favors in order to work out the deal.

By completing a trade, Utah was at least able to bring back assets in exchange for the talented player. 

Favors has spent the past eight seasons with the Jazz. The New Jersey Nets selected him with the third overall pick in the 2010 NBA draft, but he appeared in just 56 games for the organization before getting dealt to Utah in the blockbuster Deron Williams trade.

The 27-year-old Atlanta native averaged 11.8 points, 7.4 rebounds and 1.4 blocks while shooting 58.6 percent from the field across 76 appearances last season. Among power forwards, he ranked fifth in player efficiency rating and eighth in ESPN’s real plus-minus.

He’s come a long way since struggling to carve out a niche for himself off the Jazz bench early in his career.

He told Tony Jones of The Athletic in mid-June there was a certain shock factor that took a while to wear off after being moved so quickly by the Nets.

“I remember being overwhelmed,” Favors said. “I didn’t know what to expect because I had never been traded. I had new teammates. I had a new coaching staff. I was only 19. I just wasn’t mentally prepared for that at the time.”

The Georgia Tech product’s minutes have decreased over the past three seasons because he’s never developed an outside shot amid the rise of stretch 4s. But his numbers show he’s remained a highly effective player in a more limited role for Utah.

Since the Jazz have one of the NBA’s top centers in Rudy Gobert, they decided to left Favors go to create more financial flexibility. The team will also reportedly add Ed Davis, per Wojnarowski.

Meanwhile, New Orleans will now have an experienced frontcourt player to pair with rookies Zion Williamson and Jaxson Hayes.

With Jrue Holiday leading the way and several promising players like Brandon Ingram and Lonzo Ball also on the roster, the Pelicans have a chance to be a playoff contender in 2019-20 even after losing Anthony Davis.

Read More

from Daily Trends Hunter https://ift.tt/2IZXebS
via IFTTT

Report: Ex-Celtics Star Al Horford Agrees to 4-Year, $109M Contract with 76ers

Boston Celtics center Al Horford (42) shoots during warms-ups before Game 4 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series against the Indiana Pacers in Indianapolis, Sunday, April 21, 2019. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy)

Michael Conroy/Associated Press

Al Horford is reportedly joining the third team of his career.

The Philadelphia 76ers agreed to a four-year, $109 million deal with the big man Sunday, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN.

“Horford’s agent tried to do a deal in Boston, but the money was significantly less than the Philly deal,” Wojnarowski said on ESPN’s The Jump.

Wojnarowski reported June 18 that Horford declined the $30.1 million player option on his contract for the 2019-20 campaign to become an unrestricted free agent instead of returning to the Boston Celtics.

The move turned heads, especially considering Horford rejected such a financial windfall while he is likely on the back end of his career, but Wojnarowski noted there was still “motivation” on both sides to sign a long-term contract that could give the front office financial flexibility.

However, Steve Bulpett of the Boston Herald reported Horford stopped discussing a three-year deal with the Celtics and instead was “expected” to join another team on a four-year contract.

The Florida product entered the league in 2007 when the Atlanta Hawks selected him with the No. 3 overall pick, and he has surpassed expectations as a five-time All-Star, 2010-11 All-NBA third-team selection and 2017-18 All-Defensive second-team selection.

He has been a double-double machine throughout his 12 seasons and has averaged 14.1 points and 8.4 rebounds per contest in his career. He can also extend his game to the perimeter as a three-point shooter (36.0 percent last season and 42.9 percent in 2017-18) and facilitate from the high elbow or blocks when defenders collapse on him.

Horford is a proven commodity, but there is some risk for the 76ers to sign a 33-year-old for multiple seasons.

In order to mitigate that, he will need to provide veteran leadership and poise while continuing to produce like he did in 2018-19.

Even with plenty of miles on his legs, Horford averaged 13.6 points, 6.7 rebounds, 4.2 assists and 1.3 blocks per night while shooting 53.5 percent from the field and a career-best 82.1 percent from the free-throw line last season, serving as a stabilizing force for a volatile Celtics squad that failed to live up to championship hopes.

Horford has 120 playoff games on his resume but has never played in the NBA Finals.

He won’t single-handedly change that with the Sixers, but his versatility on both ends of the floor and ability to slide in alongside Ben Simmons and Joel Embiid figures to help Philly push toward title contention in 2019-20.

The combination of Horford and Embiid gives the 76ers a chance to own perhaps the NBA’s most productive frontcourt, but that’s dependent on their fitting well together.

Read More

from Daily Trends Hunter https://ift.tt/2IXZWP8
via IFTTT

Report: Jimmy Butler to Heat in Sign-and-Trade; Agrees to 4-Year, $142M Contract

Philadelphia 76ers' Jimmy Butler in action during the first half of Game 6 of a second-round NBA basketball playoff series against the Toronto Raptors, Thursday, May 9, 2019, in Philadelphia. 76ers won 112-101. (AP Photo/Chris Szagola)

Chris Szagola/Associated Press

Jimmy Buckets is off the market.

The Miami Heat will acquire star wing Jimmy Butler in a sign-and-trade with the Philadelphia 76ers, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN. Butler will get the full four-year max worth $142 million, per Shams Charania of Stadium and The Athletic.

Philadelphia will receive Josh Richardson in exchange for the deal, per Charania.

Butler, 29, had a bizarre 2018-19 season, essentially forcing his way out of Minnesota before being traded to the Philadelphia 76ers. He was one of two major midseason acquisitions for Philly, alongside Tobias Harris, and he showed his worth to the team almost immediately, providing a solid two-way game and the ability to close out contests late in the fourth quarter with some clutch performances and game-winning shots.

  1. McCollum and the Blazers Snapped Postseason Losing Streak for “Jennifer”

  2. Stars Invest in Plant-Based Food as Vegetarianism Sweeps NBA

  3. The NBA Got Some Wild Techs This Season

  4. Jarrett Allen Is One of the NBA’s Hottest Rim Protectors

  5. Wade’s Jersey Swaps Created Epic Moments This Season

  6. Westbrook Makes History While Honoring Nipsey Hussle

  7. Devin Booker Makes History with Scoring Tear

  8. 29 Years Ago, Jordan Dropped Career-High 69 Points

  9. Bosh Is Getting His Jersey Raised to the Rafters in Miami

  10. Steph Returns to Houston for 1st Time Since His Moon Landing Troll

  11. Lou Williams Is Coming for a Repeat of Sixth Man of the Year

  12. Pat Beverley Has the Clippers Stealing the LA Shine

  13. LeBron Keeps Shredding NBA Record Books

  14. Young’s Hot Streak Is Heating Up the ROY Race with Luka

  15. LeBron and 2 Chainz Form a Superteam to Release a New Album

  16. Wade’s #OneLastDance Dominated February

  17. Warriors Fans Go Wild After Unforgettable Moments with Steph

  18. Eight Years Ago, the Nuggets Traded Melo to the Knicks

  19. Two Years Ago, the Kings Shipped Boogie to the Pelicans

  20. ASG Will Be Competitive Again If the NBA Raises the Stakes

Right Arrow Icon

In all, Butler averaged 18.2 points, 5.3 rebounds and 4.0 assists in 55 regular-season games with the Sixers, shooting 46.1 percent from the field and 33.8 percent from three.

But Butler was even better for the team in the playoffs, as head coach Brett Brown all but made him the half-court point guard and ran far more pick-and-rolls for him. While Butler’s counting stats (19.4 points, 6.1 rebounds, 5.2 assists) didn’t see a major bump, his impact was clearly felt.

Philadelphia 76ers @sixers

Death, taxes, and Jimmy’s Buckets.

@JimmyButler | #HereTheyCome https://t.co/hhZ1DPUijv

His ability to create his own offense on the perimeter was huge for a Sixers team that lacked that type of player before his arrival. While Joel Embiid has emerged as the NBA‘s best center and Ben Simmons is a two-way force, neither is as adept at creating his own offense. In the postseason, when defenses tighten and possessions often boil down to players winning one-on-one battles to create buckets outside the context of team offense, Butler was vital. 

That makes his loss devastating for the Sixers. But his two-way play and clutch gene are huge additions for Miami, who are now one step closer to being title contenders next season.

In Miami, Butler will give the Heat their first superstar since the heyday of Dwyane Wade and the team’s title runs with LeBron James and Chris Bosh. There will be some questions about how Pat Riley and the front office will build around Butler, given that they gave up an excellent young player in Josh Richardson, but getting Butler was a move in the right direction.

Recruiting another star in the future will be the next step for a Heat team that once again has a path toward contention in the coming years.

Read More

from Daily Trends Hunter https://ift.tt/2Xhbfe7
via IFTTT

Israeli missile strike kills civilians: Syrian state media

Israeli warplanes have fired missiles targeting Syrian military positions in Homs and the Damascus outskirts in Syria in an attack that killed at least four civilians and wounded another 21, Syrian state media said.

The Syrian military said on Monday that its air defences had confronted the attack, which was launched from Lebanese airspace.

An Israeli military spokeswoman, asked about the report, said: “We don’t comment on such reports.”

Syrian state-run broadcaster al-Ikhbariya said the four civilians including a baby had been killed in Sahnaya, south of Damascus, as “a result of the Zionist aggression”.

State news agency SANA said an additional 21 people had been wounded. SANA also reported that Syrian air defences had brought down a number of the missiles.

In recent years, Israel has carried out hundreds of attacks in Syria that it says have hit its regional arch-foe, Iran, and the Lebanese Hezbollah group, which it calls the biggest threat to its borders.

Iran and Hezbollah are fighting on the side of President Bashar al-Assad in the Syrian war, and Israel says they are trying to turn Syria into a new front against Israelis.

SOURCE:
Reuters news agency

Read More

from Daily Trends Hunter https://ift.tt/2Jb5BjG
via IFTTT

Knicks News: Julius Randle Signs 3-Year, $63M Contract in Free Agency

New Orleans Pelicans center Julius Randle (30) in the second half of an NBA basketball game Saturday, March 2, 2019, in Denver. The Pelicans won 120-112. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

David Zalubowski/Associated Press

Julius Randle has agreed to sign a three-year, $63 million deal with the New York Knicks, according to his agents, Aaron Mintz and Steve Heumann.  

Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN shared the confirmation from Randle’s agents.

He declined his player option, which was part of the two-year, $18 million deal he signed with New Orleans after the Los Angeles Lakers renounced his rights.  

“If you ask every [NBA] player if they had their dream scenario, their dream scenario is everyone just wants to be wanted,” Randle told The Undefeated’s Marc J. Spears in September 2018. “For me talking to New Orleans, they wanted me. I was a part of their future.”

Fast-forward to now, and it’s clear the Knicks wanted him.

In four seasons with Los Angeles, the 2014 seventh overall pick topped out at 16.1 points per game. All Randle did in his lone season in New Orleans was post a career-high 21.4 points while adding 8.7 rebounds and 3.1 assists per game.

He finished the season on a strong note, averaging 24.6 points and 7.6 rebounds per game following the All-Star break.

Randle was first linked to New York when Spears reported in late June that the Knicks had him, along with a number of other big men, on their radar. Spears noted there was mutual interest.

New York had been in the market for frontcourt help after parting ways with Kristaps Porzingis and Enes Kanter this past season.

The Knicks have some young talent in third overall pick RJ Barrett, 2018 ninth overall pick Kevin Knox and 2018 second-round pick Mitchell Robinson. However, they entered the offseason without a consistent scoring threat. Unrestricted free agent Emmanuel Mudiay (14.8 PPG) was the team’s leading scorer among players who finished the 2018-19 season in the Big Apple.

Barrett was arguably the top scorer in this year’s draft class, but it would not be fair to ask him to carry the team as a rookie. Bringing in Randle provides David Fizdale with another scorer, one who should help take some of the pressure off Barrett.

Read More

from Daily Trends Hunter https://ift.tt/2JlI6EO
via IFTTT

Hong Kong protesters block roads on China handover anniversary

Anti-government protesters in Hong Kong blocked key roads early Monday morning as part of a mass planned pro-democracy rally on the anniversary of the city’s handover to China.

The semi-autonomous Chinese territory has seen historic protests in recent weeks over a controversial extradition bill that would allow suspects to be sent to mainland China to face trial.

More than a million protesters took to the streets of the city twice last month calling for the bill to be scrapped permanently.

Pro-China Chief Execuitve Carrie Lam was forced to shelve the controversial bill last month due to the public backlash but the protesters are demanding her resignation as well as dropping of charges against demonstrators arrested in recent weeks.

Tensions spiked once more in the financial hub as dawn rose on Monday after small groups of mainly young, masked protesters seized three key thoroughfares, deploying metal and plastic barriers to block the way.

Rows of riot police with helmets and shields were facing protesters at Fenwick Pier Street but were not moving on protesters as dawn rose over the financial hub.

The ongoing rallies are the latest manifestation of growing fears that China is stamping down on the city’s freedoms and culture with the help of the finance hub’s pro-Beijing leaders.

Although Hong Kong was returned from British to Chinese rule on July 1, 1997, it is still administered separately under an arrangement known as “one country, two systems”.

The city enjoys rights and liberties unseen on the autocratic mainland, but many residents fear Beijing is already reneging on that deal.

Pro-democracy activists have organised a march every handover anniversary, calling for greater democratic freedoms – such as the right to elect the city’s leader.

They have mustered large crowds in recent years – including a two-month occupation in 2014 – but have failed to win any concessions from Beijing.

This year’s rally comes against the backdrop of unprecedented anti-government protests over the past three weeks that have drawn millions and anger over police using tear gas and rubber bullets to clear crowds.

The demonstrations have morphed into a wider movement against Lam’s administration and Beijing. 

Lam – who has kept out of the public eye since her climbdown and has record low approval ratings – is expected to attend a flag-raising ceremony on the harbourfront early on Monday, marking the moment the city returned to Chinese ownership 22 years ago.

Sam Mu, an artist, was with a small group of friends waving black flags on Monday morning close to where the ceremony was due take place.

“It’s a symbol of how are city is falling,” he told AFP. “Our city’s freedoms are shrinking, it’s going in a more authoritarian direction.”

Activists, who are mainly young students, have vowed to keep up their civil disobedience campaign in the coming weeks.

“Whatever happens we won’t lose heart, that’s why we’ll keep taking to the streets,” Jason Chan, a 22-year-old accountant added. “Resistance is not a matter of a day or a week, it is long term.”

The pro-democracy rally is scheduled to take place on Monday afternoon, following the same route the two mass rallies last month took – from a park to the city’s legislature.

Permission for a separate pro-Beijing rally has been granted to start at the same time in the same park – raising fears of confrontations.

On Sunday, tens of thousands of pro-establishment protesters rallied in support of Hong Kong’s police.

Many waved Chinese flags and hurled insults at anti-government demonstrators camped nearby, highlighting the deep ideological fissures now dividing the finance hub.

Read More

from Daily Trends Hunter https://ift.tt/2XgTZ8P
via IFTTT

Report: Jeremy Lamb, Pacers Agree on $31.M Contract After Malcolm Brodgon Trade

Charlotte Hornets guard Jeremy Lamb (3) during the second half of an NBA basketball game against the Detroit Pistons Sunday, April 7, 2019, in Detroit. (AP Photo/Duane Burleson)

Duane Burleson/Associated Press

Swingman Jeremy Lamb must have caught the Indiana Pacers‘ eye during his career-best scoring season in 2018-19 because they agreed to a three-year, $31.5 million contract with the seven-year veteran Sunday, according to Shams Charania of The Athletic and Stadium.  

Lamb spent the last four seasons with the Charlotte Hornets but entered the league in 2012 as the No. 12 overall pick of the Houston Rockets. Before he even played for the team that drafted him, Houston then traded him to the Oklahoma City Thunder as part of the infamous deal that brought James Harden to the Rockets.

The trade clearly didn’t work out for the Thunder considering Harden elevated himself to league MVP and became one of the best offensive players of his generation. What’s more, Lamb never posted more than 8.5 points per night in any of his three seasons with OKC.

Charlotte traded for him before the 2015-16 campaign and then signed him to a three-year contract extension.

  1. McCollum and the Blazers Snapped Postseason Losing Streak for “Jennifer”

  2. Stars Invest in Plant-Based Food as Vegetarianism Sweeps NBA

  3. The NBA Got Some Wild Techs This Season

  4. Jarrett Allen Is One of the NBA’s Hottest Rim Protectors

  5. Wade’s Jersey Swaps Created Epic Moments This Season

  6. Westbrook Makes History While Honoring Nipsey Hussle

  7. Devin Booker Makes History with Scoring Tear

  8. 29 Years Ago, Jordan Dropped Career-High 69 Points

  9. Bosh Is Getting His Jersey Raised to the Rafters in Miami

  10. Steph Returns to Houston for 1st Time Since His Moon Landing Troll

  11. Lou Williams Is Coming for a Repeat of Sixth Man of the Year

  12. Pat Beverley Has the Clippers Stealing the LA Shine

  13. LeBron Keeps Shredding NBA Record Books

  14. Young’s Hot Streak Is Heating Up the ROY Race with Luka

  15. LeBron and 2 Chainz Form a Superteam to Release a New Album

  16. Wade’s #OneLastDance Dominated February

  17. Warriors Fans Go Wild After Unforgettable Moments with Steph

  18. Eight Years Ago, the Nuggets Traded Melo to the Knicks

  19. Two Years Ago, the Kings Shipped Boogie to the Pelicans

  20. ASG Will Be Competitive Again If the NBA Raises the Stakes

Right Arrow Icon

He delivered in a bigger offensive role when no longer playing alongside Russell Westbrook and Kevin Durant and set a career high in scoring in each of his four seasons with the Hornets. He improved from 8.8 points per game in 2015-16 to 9.7 in 2016-17 to 12.9 in 2017-18 to 15.3 in 2018-19.

Lamb also posted a career-best 5.5 rebounds per game last season and showed a willingness to battle on the glass from the backcourt.

While he is just 27 years old and has demonstrated constant improvement as a wing scorer, Lamb’s new team surely wants to see him bolster his three-point shooting after a drop from 37.0 percent in 2017-18 to 34.8 percent last season. If he can do that, he could take advantage of the openings created alongside Pacers guard Victor Oladipo.

Lamb is also a versatile defender who is quick enough to stick with ball-handlers and tall enough (6’5″) to challenge outside shots. Charlotte’s defensive rating was 108.9 when he was on the court and dropped to 111.5 when he was off it last season, per NBA.com.

The Connecticut product won’t be the flashiest signing this offseason, but he is a valuable role player who has demonstrated potential as an offensive playmaker and defender.

Read More

from Daily Trends Hunter https://ift.tt/2xjbQw7
via IFTTT