NBA 2021 Free Agency: Day 2 Recap

Sports 04 August, 2021 - 02:00am 27 views

Who did the Bulls sign in free agency?

After executing a sign-and-trade to acquire point guard Lonzo Ball from the New Orleans Pelicans, and adding free agent Alex Caruso, the Bulls are signing DeMar DeRozan to a three-year, $85 million deal through a sign-and-trade with the San Antonio Spurs, per The Athletic's Shams Charania. CBSSports.comNBA free agency: Bulls land DeMar DeRozan via sign-and-trade with Spurs for Thaddeus Young, picks, per report

Is Chris Paul a free agent?

Fox Sports: Chris Paul a free-agency winner with deal with Phoenix Suns. Yaron Weitzman writes: "It was only two years ago that every NBA observer was labeling Paul's contract one of the worst in the league. Now he's getting a four-year, $120 million contract that will carry him to the age of 40." AZCentral.comPhoenix Suns, Chris Paul among big winners early in 2021 NBA free agency

Is Lowry a free agent?

NBA free agency: Kyle Lowry to Heat in sign-and-trade; Jimmy Butler, Duncan Robinson ink new deals, per report. Kyle Lowry will join the Miami Heat on a three-year deal worth $90 million through a sign-and-trade arrangement with the Toronto Raptors, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN. CBSSports.comNBA free agency: Kyle Lowry to Heat in sign-and-trade; Jimmy Butler, Duncan Robinson ink new deals, per report

After a wild first day of free agency on Monday, things slowed down a little on Tuesday, with only two of today’s reported free agent agreements exceeding $12.1MM. Still, another 20+ free agents came off the board over the course of the day.

Listed below are Tuesday’s notable contract agreements and news items. For the most part, these deals aren’t yet official, so the reported terms could change — or agreements could fall through altogether. Generally speaking though, teams and players are on track to finalize these deals sometime after the moratorium ends on Friday.

Here are Tuesday’s noteworthy free agent agreements:

Here are a few more of the day’s most notable headlines:

The Warriors definitely need to find a reliable backup for Steph who will turn 34 before the end of next season. Even though he managed to miss just 9 games last season he was out for 104 of their 229 games over the previous 3 seasons. Despite the fact that fans hate it, load management will be a huge part of the upcoming NBA season. Especially for the teams with older stars.

Not much talent left in the way of back up point guards either. Can’t see them in the running for Schroder or Dinwiddie, Reggie Jackson is most likely staying with the clippers, Isiah Thomas would be very very unlikely, maybe Jeff Teague, maybe Elfrid Payton but I don’t like his fit, Raul Neto would represent a considerable drop off in talent

Disagree on Lakers doing “excellent”. However watching 2 massive egos try to share 1 basketball will be entertaining. Melo at this point is just ring chasing but I don’t he gets one on this team.

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Chris Paul stays with Suns on four-year deal worth up to $120M

Yardbarker 03 August, 2021 - 01:22am

Free agent point guard Chris Paul has agreed to a four-year contract with the Suns that could be worth up to $120M, reports Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports (Twitter link). Paul will turn 40 years old in 2025, the year the deal expires.

Paul turned down a $44M player option with Phoenix on Sunday in order to lock in a more lucrative longer-term deal. The Suns were the only team that could have offered him more than three years due to the NBA’s Over-38 rule, so it’s possible that helped push the deal over the finish line.

According to Marc J. Spears of The Undefeated, Paul underwent surgery on his left wrist shortly after the NBA Finals ended last month. However, he’s expected to be ready for the start of training camp in the fall, a source tells Spears.

Paul, who has played for four teams in the last five seasons, had one of the best years of his decorated career with Phoenix in 2020-21. His individual numbers – including 16.4 PPG, 8.9 APG, and 4.5 RPG in 70 games (31.4 MPG) – weren’t as impressive as the ones he was posting earlier in his career, but he helped turned the Suns from a lottery team into a legit contender.

Phoenix finished the season with the NBA’s second-best record and represented the Western Conference in the NBA Finals, taking a 2-0 lead over Milwaukee before dropping the next four games. Paul earned Second Team All-NBA honors and a top-five finish in MVP voting as a result of his impressive season.

Because Paul’s 2021-22 salary will now be significantly lower than the $44M+ he would’ve earned if he had picked up his option, the Suns now have some added cap flexibility for the coming season, allowing the team to make use of its mid-level exception. However, the club projects to be deep into the tax in future years if it completes long-term extensions with Deandre Ayton and Mikal Bridges, as is expected.

This article first appeared on Hoops Rumors and was syndicated with permission.

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New York Giants head coach Joe Judge was livid after a brawl broke out during his team’s training camp practice on Tuesday. What was particularly concerning was that Daniel Jones was involved in it, but the quarterback did not express regrets afterword. Numerous Giants beat reporters described a massive fight among players, and Jones ended up at the bottom of a pile. SNY’s Ralph Vacchiano said the mayhem started after running back Corey Clement took a big hit at the end of a run. Tight end Evan Engram took exception and retaliated, at which point things got out of hand. Judge was furious and made players line up at the goal line for sprints and push-ups. Vacchiano said he has never seen the coach so angry. The practice was the first one of the season for the Giants in full pads. Jones, who was wearing a non-contact jersey, was asked by reporters how he would respond to people who say a starting quarterback should stay out of that type of scrum. The former first-round pick downplayed the concerns. “I was fine,” Jones said. “I was all good, no problem. … I’m part of the team and part of the offense, and we’re competing.” Judge did not feel that the brawl was “all good.” Coaches want to see guys playing with passion, but the behavior obviously crossed the line for Judge. The Giants’ brawl happened on the same day a player was stretchered off the field following a head shot from his own teammate. Both instances were a reminder that players need to be smarter when going up against teammates.

Novak Djokovic is not proud of his outbursts at the Olympics that also left one of his colleagues perplexed. Djokovic lost his bronze medal match to Pablo Carreno Busta in three sets in the men’s singles event at the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo. Then he withdrew from the mixed doubles event too. Upset over failing to take advantage of a break point in the third set, Djokovic smashed his racket. “I don’t like doing these things, I’m sorry for sending this kind of message, but we’re all human beings and sometimes it’s hard to control,” Djokovic later said. Djokovic has won 20 grand slam events, which ties him for the most ever with Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal. Nadal spoke about Djokovic’s behavior and said it was not ideal. The Spaniard was happy no fans were around for the outburst. Nadal also called it strange that Djokovic behaves in that manner. “It’s strange that someone so successful reacts this way from time to time, but in the end he’s very competitive and reacts like that.” English is not Nadal’s first language, so maybe he didn’t mean to take a shot Djokovic the way the wording comes across. But it’s clear he questions Djokovic’s inability to control his emotions at times during matches. Djokovic has a history of such outbursts. The 34-year-old smashed his racket in anger during the Australian Open earlier this year. He was also infamously disqualified from the US Open last year after he hit a ball in frustration and it inadvertently struck a line judge. You can see the video of that incident here.

Indianapolis Colts coach Frank Reich told reporters Monday that quarterback Carson Wentz required surgery to repair the foot injury he suffered last week in practice. According to Joel A. Erickson of the Indianapolis Star, Reich offered a positive update on his signal-caller Tuesday. "Very successful surgery," Reich said of the procedure. "Best-case scenario. What’s that mean? It means you go in, you remove the (piece of) bone that was in there, you look around, and there was nothing else going on. That was good news, and now it’s all about the rehab process." It was learned Monday that Wentz will be sidelined anywhere from five to 12 weeks as he recovers from the setback. The 28-year-old will stay off the foot for at least two weeks, and there's not expected to be any in-depth reveal about his potential return to the lineup until he begins his rehabilitation. He will likely miss the entire preseason. 2020 fourth-round draft pick Jacob Eason is currently Indianapolis' QB1 as the club prepares to begin the exhibition portion of the calendar against the Carolina Panthers on Aug. 15. Per Chase Goodbread of the league's website, current Chicago Bears quarterback and former Wentz backup Nick Foles told reporters Monday he hadn't spoken with the Colts about a potential trade.

The Russell Westbrook trade from the Washington Wizards to the Los Angeles Lakers last week came together pretty quickly. Apparently, there’s a reason for this. The former NBA MVP had been discussing a potential move to Southern California with Lakers stars LeBron James and Anthony Davis for some time now. The idea was to build a super team in Los Angeles after an ugly first-round exit in the 2021 NBA Playoffs. All the while, Russell Westbrook and his Wizards team was also coming off a first-round exit at the hands of the Philadelphia 76ers. Teaming up with star Bradley Beal, Russ seemingly returned to earlier-career form by averaging a triple-double. Even then, it became apparent that the fit in D.C. was not going to work long term. Westbrook’s push to be moved from the nation’s capital out west added another layer to this. Behind the scenes, Wizards and Washington Capitals owner Ted Leonsis was working on a new deal for NHL star Alexander Ovechkin. In talking about the two situations, the Wizards owner took time out of his day to absolutely blast Russ and other NBA players. It was not subtle, either. “We had a superstar player with the Wizards, he had an opportunity and wanted to be traded to the Lakers,” Leonsis said, via ESPN. “And I was dealing with that as we were announcing Alex. I couldn’t help but self-reflect on what a difference it is. Here’s a great player in Russell Westbrook, played in OKC, wanted to be traded, went to Houston, wanted to be traded, came to D.C., wanted to be traded and is now in L.A. He’s an unbelievably great person and an unbelievably great player. But that’s the difference between the NBA and the NHL, I suppose.” With the Capitals since all the way back in 2005, Ovechkin has morphed into one of the greatest NHL players of all-time. He went through ups and downs with the organization, but always stayed loyal. That was rewarded with a five-year, $47.5 million extension last week. The backdrop here was Westbrook seemingly requesting to be traded to the Lakers. Is the Wizards owner right in blasting Russell Westbrook? There’s a few different layers to this. Westbrook played with the Thunder for 11 full seasons before being moved to the Houston Rockets ahead of the 2019-20 season. It became apparent in his one year with Houston that a relationship with James Harden was not going to work. The former NBA MVP then asked out, and was ultimately traded to Washington in exchange for another bloated contract in that of John Wall. The Wizards were desperate to move off the injury-plagued Wall. Meanwhile, no trade market took place for Westbrook at the time. In the end, an awkward union between Washington and the future Hall of Fame guard took hold. At 32 years old and no longer in his prime, there was an opportunity for Westbrook to compete for what would be his first NBA title. Not only that, it was an opportunity for the Southern California native and UCLA product to return home. Perhaps, Leonsis is being a bit shortsighted here.

Per Andrew Cesare Richardson of ESPN, midfielder Christian Eriksen has returned to Italy and Serie A club Inter Milan for the first time since he suffered his cardiac arrest in Denmark's UEFA European Championship opener on June 12. Eriksen met with Inter director Beppe Marotta and is undergoing tests after he had successful surgery to have a defibrillator implanted in June. It's not yet publicly known what caused his cardiac arrest, and Italian football guidelines could prohibit him from ever again competing in Serie A. The 29-year-old is expected to remain sidelined for at least an additional six months but could be cleared to resume his career in England or the Netherlands per their rules. Eriksen collapsed while featuring for his national team versus Finland and was resuscitated via CPR and a defibrillator. He was hospitalized but later able to visit with Denmark teammates before he journeyed home to continue his recovery. Shortly after the terrifying incident, the English Premier League announced it would be funding Automated External Defibrillators for over 2,000 sites at grassroots football clubs and facilities in the country to help prevent future tragedies from occurring during matches.

NBA superstar Kevin Durant tallied 29 points in 31 minutes on Tuesday as Team USA overcame an early deficit to defeat Spain 95-81 and advance to the Olympic semifinals. The victory marks the fifth straight Summer Olympics in which the Red, White and Blue has knocked Spain out of the international competition. Despite setting the standard for scoring in Olympic men's basketball, Durant gave credit to the entire team for overcoming some early issues. "We're in a good spot right now," he said, via ESPN. "Guys are starting to understand their roles and just getting comfortable within the team. In this setting, it's always hard to get your footing as an individual player. You don't want to step on toes." Teammates Damian Lillard, Jrue Holiday, Zach LaVine and Jayson Tatum also scored double digits as the team collectively shot 48 percent from the field. Team USA will face Australia in the semis on Thursday.

Simone Biles won the bronze medal on the balance beam after she competed in the final day of events in artistic gymnastics, ESPN reported early Tuesday morning. The 24-year-old gymnast was met with a standing ovation as she prepped for her routine, her first appearance since backing out events due to mental health reasons. She missed the all-around event as well as the finals on vault, uneven bars and floor. "It wasn't easy pulling out of all those competitions," Biles said, via ESPN. "People just thought it was easy, but I physically and mentally was not in the right headspace, and I didn't want to jeopardize my health and my safety because, at the end of the day, it's not worth it." Biles considered herself "day-to-day" with regard to whether she was in the right mindset to compete in any more events since withdrawing and it wasn't known until late Monday whether or not she was going to compete at all. Despite her own competition status, Biles continued to be one of Team USA's loudest supporters during the other events, cheering on her teammates throughout the competition. "It's seriously cool to see her love and support and her cheering us on," said teammate MyKayla Skinner, who won silver on vault in place of Biles. "And after everything she's gone through, it's really cool to see how strong she's being." There is already speculation as to whether this is Biles' last Olympics or if she will make an appearance at the 2024 Summer Games in Paris, France. As of now, however, the Ohio native isn't looking that far ahead. "Paris is definitely not in my mind frame because I think there are so many things that I have to work on for myself first," she said. The 2020 Games conclude on Sunday, Aug. 8.

The San Francisco 49ers plan to have Trey Lance eventually take over for Jimmy Garoppolo. However, that likely won't happen during Lance's rookie training camp. Shanahan told Peter King for "Football Morning in America" that he can't say when Lance will be San Francisco's starter, but he does think Garoppolo at his best will be able to beat out Lance or any rookie quarterback. "In this business, if you're trying to plan out the next six months and say, 'Where's it going?' that's a mistake," Shanahan said. "You can't do it. What I told Jimmy right when we made the trade is, 'I don't know any rookie who can come and beat you out if you're playing at his best self.' I didn't necessarily think he was there last year at training camp. Then he had the injuries and stuff. But right now I see him playing well out here. If he can continue to go that way, that's great for Trey. That's great for our team. Then Trey can wait till he's at his best self, which doesn't happen overnight." Shanahan added that he "truly" doesn't know when Lance will supplant the veteran quarterback. Garoppolo has played well for the 49ers at times and has even led San Francisco to the Super Bowl. However, injuries have limited the 29-year-old to just one full season with the franchise since 2017. During his one full season in 2019, Garoppolo went 13-3, completing 69.1% of his passes for 3,978 yards and 27 touchdowns against 13 interceptions. That was the campaign that San Francisco made it to the Super Bowl. If Garoppolo can play as he did in 2019 in 2021, then Lance will spend a decent amount of time on the bench.

Veteran forward Blake Griffin performed extremely well for the Brooklyn Nets last season after he was bought out by the Detroit Pistons. While the 32-year-old six-time All-Star is nowhere near the player he was during the height of his career with the Los Angeles Clippers, he provided veteran experience in the Big Apple. Griffin is now being rewarded for that. According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, the Nets have decided to re-sign Griffin to a one-year contract. Over the cap and without much wriggle room to work with, Brooklyn was deciding between bringing back Blake Griffin or Jeff Green. Finances made it a near impossibility to re-sign both veterans. Once the Denver Nuggets signed Green earlier on Monday, it became clear that Griffin would return to Brooklyn. Joining forces with the likes of Kevin Durant, James Harden and Kyrie Irving on the Nets last season, Griffin took on a secondary role for the first time in his career. He responded by averaging 10.0 points and 4.7 rebounds on 49% shooting from the field. Even with the Nets looking to add other veteran minimum players in free agency, Blake Griffin should play a key role for the championship contenders once the 2021-22 season comes calling.

Athing Mu captured gold in the women’s 800m race at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics on Tuesday, and her family loved it. COVID-19 has restricted fan attendance at the Summer Olympics this year. So NBC has been compensating by placing cameras at the homes of family and friends of competitors. That’s how we’ve seen some fun video reactions, such as this one. Here is a look at the reaction from Mu’s family and friends as Mu progressed towards a first-place finish at the Olympic Stadium. That was fun to watch. Mu, who is from Trenton, N.J., finished with a time of 1:55.21. The 19-year-old is the first US winner in the women’s 800m since Madeline Manning in 1968.

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