Toronto Raptors – Hoops Rumors Legitimate NBA free agent and trade rumors. 2020-08-03T23:53:42Z https://www.hoopsrumors.com/feed/atom WordPress Luke Adams <![CDATA[Mike Budenholzer, Billy Donovan Win Coaches Association Award]]> https://www.hoopsrumors.com/?p=167532 2020-08-03T16:37:33Z 2020-08-03T16:37:33Z Bucks head coach Mike Budenholzer and Thunder head coach Billy Donovan have been voted the co-coaches of the year by the National Basketball Coaches Association, reports ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.

This award, introduced in 2017, isn’t the NBA’s official Coach of the Year award, which is voted on by media members and is represented by the Red Auerbach Trophy. The winner of that award is expected to be announced at some point during the postseason this summer.

The Coaches Association’s version of the award – named after longtime NBCA executive director Michael H. Goldberg – is voted on by the NBA’s 30 head coaches, none of whom can vote for himself.

Budenholzer, who also won the NBCA’s award in 2019, has had even more success with the East-leading Bucks this season. His team has a 54-13 record and – before the season was suspended – had been on pace to surpass the 60 victories that last year’s Milwaukee squad racked up.

As for Donovan, he has exceeded expectations with a Thunder team that was viewed as a borderline playoff contender and a candidate for a full-fledged rebuild. Instead of returning to the lottery following the offseason departures of Russell Westbrook and Paul George, Oklahoma City is 41-24, good for sixth in the Western Conference. A strong finish over the next couple weeks could result in a top-four record in the conference for the Thunder.

Raptors head coach Nick Nurse, widely viewed as the favorite to win the official Coach of the Year award in 2020, was one vote away from finishing in a three-way tie with Budenholzer and Donovan, per Wojnarowski.

Sources tell ESPN that Taylor Jenkins (Grizzlies), Nate McMillan (Pacers), Erik Spoelstra (Heat), and Brad Stevens (Celtics), and Frank Vogel (Lakers) also received votes.

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JD Shaw <![CDATA[Atlantic Notes: Raptors, Crawford, Lowry, Walker]]> https://www.hoopsrumors.com/?p=167470 2020-08-02T22:32:12Z 2020-08-02T21:51:22Z Raptors coach Nick Nurse isn’t worried about his team being forgotten as they look to repeat as NBA champions this year, Tim Bontemps of ESPN writes.

The Raptors, who were overlooked at times before defeating the likes of Philadelphia, Milwaukee, and an injury-riddled Golden State team last season, beat the Lakers 107-92 on Saturday for their first victory in Orlando. The Lakers, headlined by LeBron James and Anthony Davis, are naturally one of the league’s most feared contenders.

“Yeah, maybe,” Nurse said on whether onlookers are listening to the team’s confidence this season. “I don’t think anybody’s going to pay much attention, they don’t ever seem to, but it’s OK.

“Seriously man, we love to play the games and we like to compete, we know we’re tough to beat, we really do, and I think there’s a ceiling we can get to yet.”

The Raptors currently hold the second-best record in the Eastern Conference at 47-18. They trail the No. 1 seed Bucks by 6.5 games, leading the No. 3 seed Celtics by four contests. It’s no secret they’ve outperformed expectations this season, a sentiment backed by James himself.

“That’s a great team,” James said. “No ifs, ands or buts. Exceptionally well coached and championship DNA, you can never take that away from a ballclub if you win a championship. And even before that, they just got playoff-tested guys. Guys that played not only here in the NBA in big games, but also in FIBA games as well. Marc [Gasol] has been in big games throughout his whole life pretty much it seems like.

“So, that’s just a great team. The media may not talk about them much or give them much credit because Kawhi [Leonard] is gone, but players in the league definitely know what type of team they are.”

There’s more out of the Atlantic Division today:

  • Nets guard Jamal Crawford will work out Sunday and Monday with hopes of getting his conditioning up to speed, interim coach Jacque Vaughn said, as relayed by Brian Lewis of the New York Post (Twitter link). Crawford, a respected veteran across the league, has yet to appear in a game with Brooklyn due to his conditioning issues.
  • Kyle Lowry makes the Raptors a legitimate threat for an NBA Finals berth, Mark Medina of USA TODAY opines. Lowry recorded 33 points, 14 rebounds and six assists in the team’s win against the Lakers on Saturday, proving his worth on both ends of the floor. “He seems to get himself into incredible shape, and he seems happy,” Nurse said. “He seems focused and is really excited and ready to play. It rubs off on the other guys. That’s what makes him a great leader.”
  • Celtics star Kemba Walker looked good in his first action in Orlando on Friday, Chris Forsberg of NBC Sports Boston writes. Walker scored 16 points in 19 minutes against the Bucks, shooting 5-of-9 from the floor in limited time as he bounces back from a knee injury. “I thought [Walker] looked great,” teammate Gordon Hayward said. “Definitely showed good spurts there. Definitely brings some pace to our team. Another threat, another ball-handler, another guy that’s a competitor and a winner, and we’re happy to have him back.”
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Jovan Alford <![CDATA[Improving Finishing Ability Would Increase VanVleet's FA Stock]]> https://www.hoopsrumors.com/?p=167160 2020-07-30T00:39:50Z 2020-07-30T00:39:18Z
  • If Raptors point guard and impending free-agent Fred VanVleet wants to take his game to another level, he needs to be a better finisher at the rim, opines Blake Murphy of The Athletic. Murphy points out that the play styles of VanVleet and starting point guard Kyle Lowry are similar in multiple ways, but what separates them is the ability to finish at the rim. As of right now, VanVleet ranks towards the bottom third in restricted area field goal percentage (51.2).
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    Alex Kirschenbaum <![CDATA[Raptors Notes: Nurse, Draft, Campus, Restart]]> https://www.hoopsrumors.com/?p=166488 2020-07-24T01:59:34Z 2020-07-24T00:33:39Z Raptors general manager Bobby Webster has lauded 2019/20 Coach Of The Year candidate Nick Nurse without expressly defining a timeline for Nurse’s potential contract extension.

    “Nick obviously has done an incredible job for us and those (types) of conversations are always top of mind for us,” Webster said, per Michael Grange of Rogers Sportsnet (Twitter link).

    Nurse inked a three-year, $10MM deal with the Raptors in 2018 that will keep him on the sidelines through the 2020/21 NBA season. During his first year as head coach, the Raptors won the 2019 NBA Finals. This season, the 46-18 Raptors are the No. 2 seed in the East and the team had two 2020 All-Star representatives in Pascal Siakam and Kyle Lowry, despite having lost Finals MVP Kawhi Leonard in 2019 free agency.

    “Obviously, (the) timeline’s a little different this year,” Webster noted when asked about a potential extension for Nurse (Twitter link via Blake Murphy of The Athletic).

    There’s more out of Toronto:

    • Webster indicated today that the team’s front office has held conversations with about 50 or 60 potential 2020 draft picks thus far, per Blake Murphy of The Athletic (Twitter link). How the Raptors appraise those prospects remains relatively up in the air and contingent on COVID-19 numbers and league guidance as to whether or not individual player workouts or a draft combine will be permitted this season.
    • The Raptors are among the few teams present for the NBA’s summer restart at the Walt Disney World Resort whose traveling team includes both of their top front office executives, president Masai Ujiri and Webster, per Michael Grange of Rogers Sportsnet“I think you guys know how we operate, and having both of us here is good to take care of things here on the ground,” Webster noted on a conference call with reporters today.
    • The Raptors are eagerly anticipating their first return to NBA action tomorrow, in a scrimmage game against the Rockets, according to Josh Lewenberg of TSN Sports“It’s huge that we get to play basketball again and I’m excited,” Toronto guard Patrick McCaw said. “It’s a different type of atmosphere, no fans and things like that. The focus is just going to be on us, and just basketball.”
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    Luke Adams <![CDATA[Healthy Raptors Have Bevy Of Lineup Options Available]]> https://www.hoopsrumors.com/?p=166370 2020-07-22T14:07:24Z 2020-07-22T14:07:24Z
  • With a full and healthy roster for the first time all season, Raptors head coach Nick Nurse will have plenty of lineup options available to him when play resumes, writes Michael Grange of Sportsnet.ca. As Blake Murphy of The Athletic relays, Nurse is interested in experimenting with some five-man groups that are heavy on bigs. “It seems to me we started really dominant on the defensive end with the jumbo lineup,” he said.
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    Luke Adams <![CDATA[Community Shootaround: Eastern Conference Seeding]]> https://www.hoopsrumors.com/?p=164907 2020-07-10T17:13:12Z 2020-07-10T16:50:07Z Although the last playoff spot in the Eastern Conference will still be up for grabs when the NBA’s eight “seeding” games begin on July 30, that race has lost much of its luster as a result of the injuries, COVID-19 cases, and opt-outs that have decimated the Nets‘ and Wizards‘ rosters.

    Technically, the Magic (30-35) are the No. 8 seed at the moment, but they’re just a half-game back of Brooklyn (30-34) for the No. 7 spot and seem likely to pass a Nets team that will be without at least seven players, including Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving, Spencer Dinwiddie, and DeAndre Jordan.

    That would leave the Nets to hang onto the No. 8 seed by holding off the Wizards (24-40), who will be missing Bradley Beal, Davis Bertans, and John Wall, but could force a play-in tournament if they finish within four games of Orlando or Brooklyn. Washington is also currently without Thomas Bryant (coronavirus), Gary Payton II (coronavirus), and Garrison Mathews (personal), though some or all of those players may eventually rejoin the team.

    While that race for the seventh and eighth seeds may not be quite as dramatic as the NBA would like, there could still be some interesting jockeying for position further up the standings in the East.

    The 53-12 Bucks have a 6.5-game cushion over the 46-18 Raptors, so Milwaukee will likely clinch the top seed even if they’re on cruise control during the seeding games. But Toronto’s lead on the third-seeded Celtics (43-21) is just three games, and Boston’s eight-game schedule looks less daunting than the Raptors’ slate.

    Five of the Celtics’ eight games are against the Nets, Wizards, Magic, Grizzlies, and Trail Blazers, all of whom are at or near the bottom of the playoff race. The Raptors, meanwhile, will face Orlando and Memphis, but also have games against the Lakers, Heat, Nuggets, Sixers, and Bucks. The Celtics and Raptors face each other as well, in a game that will have important tiebreaker implications.

    That No. 2 seed isn’t as important as it once was, given the lack of home court advantage available, but it could mean facing the Magic instead of the Pacers, which should be a more favorable matchup even with Victor Oladipo sidelined.

    Speaking of the Pacers, they’re currently tied at 39-26 with the Sixers, with the No. 5 seed up for grabs. Clinching that fifth seed would likely mean securing a first-round matchup with the fourth-seeded Heat instead of the Celtics or Raptors.

    The Heat, meanwhile, are 41-24, putting them two games behind Boston and two games ahead of the Sixers and Pacers. They seem like a relatively safe bet to hold their position in the No. 4 vs. 5 matchup, but a hot or cold streak in Orlando could affect their spot in the standings, especially with games vs. Boston, Toronto, and Indiana (twice) on tap.

    What do you think? What do you expect the top eight spots in the Eastern Conference to look like by the time the playoffs begin? Will they look relatively similar to the current standings, or will there be some shuffling that results in some unexpected first-round matchups?

    Head to the comment section below to weigh in with your thoughts!

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    Luke Adams <![CDATA[Dewan Hernandez Healthy, With Raptors In Orlando]]> https://www.hoopsrumors.com/?p=164905 2020-07-09T22:01:42Z 2020-07-09T22:30:34Z
  • Raptors rookie Dewan Hernandez, who had been sidelined since December due to a severe ankle sprain, is with the team in Orlando and will be healthy enough to play this summer, tweets Austin Kent of SLAM. Hernandez is unlikely to play meaningful minutes, but will provide added frontcourt depth.
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    JD Shaw <![CDATA[Atlantic Notes: Raptors, Hayward, Nets, Vaughn]]> https://www.hoopsrumors.com/?p=164488 2020-07-05T21:43:33Z 2020-07-05T20:26:58Z Raptors big man Serge Ibaka is confident his team will be ready for the NBA’s resumed season in Orlando later this month, telling reporters in a conference call that his teammates are in great shape and are ready to push for a repeat.

    “I saw just how everyone is in great shape,” Ibaka said, as relayed by Tim Bontemps of ESPN. “They came here in great shape and as soon as we got here everyone was starting to put in work.

    “I’ve been in the league for 11 years. You can see when people’s locked in and they are ready mentally, and when they are not. … So I can tell you right now, mentally, everybody is ready. Everybody is ready.”

    Toronto won the 2019 NBA championship with a core of Ibaka, Kawhi Leonard, Pascal Siakam, Fred VanVleet, Kyle Lowry, and others. Although Leonard and Danny Green have since moved on, the team remains at the forefront of contention in the Eastern Conference.

    Prior to the season being suspended on March 11, Toronto held a 46-18 record, good for second-best in the East and third-best in the league. COVID-19 will force every team in the league to adjust for the planned resumption, and the Raptors are no exception.

    “Honestly it’s really concerning,” Ibaka said of the virus. “Hopefully everybody has to follow the rules, every player, when we get in the bubble in Orlando, we can respect all the notes that they’re going to give us. But I have my daughter who lives here in Orlando, and it’s kind of scary a little bit. It’s something where you have to make sure you look at it.”

    There’s more from the Atlantic Division tonight:

    • A. Sherrod Blakely of NBC Sports Boston explores the three-year Boston tenure of Gordon Hayward, who originally signing a deal to join the Celtics in July of 2017. “I can’t believe it’s been three years already, to be honest,” Hayward told reporters in a conference call. “A lot has happened for me, for my family.”
    • The Nets are exploring potential replacements that can offer frontcourt help behind center Jarrett Allen, Brian Lewis of the New York Post writes. Brooklyn has kicked the tires on multiple free agent centers in recent days, with DeAndre Jordan and Nicolas Claxton both not playing in Orlando this summer. “We have to definitely think about that,” Nets interim head coach Jacque Vaughn said. Sean (Marks) and I talked this morning on a call and we talked about addressing our size and not putting extra demand on Jarrett. So that could definitely be a route we take for sure. It definitely will be a little bit of a stress test for us. Whether that’s the amount of minutes that we play Jarrett Allen at 5, whether it’s being creative at the backup position, it changes rotations.”
    • Vaughn has continued to build bonds with Nets stars Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving, working to keep a consistent system throughout the franchise, Lewis writes in a separate article for the New York Post. “My conversations with those guys are generally based around me checking in to see how they’re doing,” Vaughn said. “Some of those conversations lead into basketball, some of those conversations lead into life conversations, some of those conversations might lead into, ‘I have a podcast for you to listen to.’ So it ranges. For me, it’s more of the connection knowing that I’m thinking about them.”
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    Dana Gauruder <![CDATA[Restart Notes: Older Coaches, Roberts, Power Rankings, Disney Employees]]> https://www.hoopsrumors.com/?p=164046 2020-07-01T22:16:09Z 2020-07-01T18:01:06Z The league won’t prevent older coaches and staff members from working at the Orlando campus, Tim MacMahon of ESPN tweets. “We’ve been assured by the league that no one will be red-flagged by the league from going to Orlando based on age alone,” according to Mavericks coach and NBA Coaches Association president Rick Carlisle. All coaches and staffers will go through a medical screening process, MacMahon adds.

    We have more news related to the NBA’s restart:

    • National Basketball Players Association executive director Michele Roberts is unconcerned about losing some fans due to the players’ desire to make social justice messages during the resumption of play, she told The Athletic’s Michael Lee. Among other things, the league will paint “Black Lives Matter” on the Orlando courts. “Anybody that says, ‘I’m done with the NBA,’ see ya,” she said. “I can’t even abide someone that says that because we are saying killing Black people is something we need to talk about. If they don’t want to hear that, I don’t really think they have a place in our game.”
    • After perusing each team’s eight “seeding” games prior to the playoffs, The Athletic’s Zach Harper places the Bucks and Lakers in the top two spots in his latest Power Rankings. Harper previously had the Lakers on top. The Clippers and Raptors remained in the third and fourth spots, respectively, with the Heat moving up two notches to No. 5.
    • While NBA teams will be subject to rigorous testing, Disney World employees won’t have similar restrictions, Rich Greenfield of LightShed tweets. There will be no COVID-19 testing of employees at Disney parks before they return to work next week. Instead, they will only be administered temperature checks.
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    Luke Adams <![CDATA[Restart Notes: Raptors, Staffers, Referees, Schedule]]> https://www.hoopsrumors.com/?p=163847 2020-06-29T19:50:17Z 2020-06-29T19:50:17Z The Raptors, who traveled to Florida a week ago and are staying and training in the Fort Myers area, are essentially experiencing a “test run” of the environment the NBA will look to create at Walt Disney World next month, writes Tim Bontemps of ESPN.

    As Bontemps details, the Raptors are staying in a hotel that is otherwise unoccupied, are eating meals in a large ballroom with spaced-out tables or in their own hotel rooms, and are being directly shuttled to and from Florida Gulf Coast University for workouts.

    If the Raptors make a deep playoff run, their early start in Florida could mean that they end up being away from home longer than any other team. However, head coach Nick Nurse doesn’t think his players or staffers are thinking about that yet, as Bontemps relays.

    “Right now, we’re not,” Nurse said on Saturday. “Maybe at some point on the back end of it, or midway through it, we might. But I just don’t know. We’re, what, five days in? They’ve been a snap of a finger. They’ve blown by. So it doesn’t feel like a burden or overwhelming. It just feels like we’re all starting and getting ready to go.”

    Here’s more on the NBA’s restart:

    • NBA teams have been informed that they’ll have the ability to replace staff members who test positive for COVID-19 on the Orlando campus and are unable to work, league sources tell ESPN’s Tim Bontemps (Twitter link).
    • The National Basketball Referees Association announced today that it has ratified a letter of agreement with the NBA addressing issues related to the resumed season.
    • Nick Friedell and Tim MacMahon of ESPN make their picks for the 12 most important “seeding games” on the summer schedule, including Lakers vs. Clippers, Grizzlies vs. Pelicans, Bucks vs. Raptors, and more.
    • Jabari Young of CNBC explores some of the creative ways the NBA will look to make money and engage fans when play resumes in Orlando this summer.
    • Marc Berman of The New York Post spoke to Dr. Stephen Gonzalez, an executive board member for the Association for Applied Sport Psychology, about the mental health challenges that NBA players will face on the Orlando campus this summer.
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    Dana Gauruder <![CDATA[Pelicans-Jazz Begins NBA Restart On July 30]]> https://www.hoopsrumors.com/?p=163679 2020-06-28T16:27:21Z 2020-06-26T23:33:26Z The Pelicans and rookie star Zion Williamson will face the Jazz on July 30 at 6:30 p.m. ET in the first game of the NBA’s restart, the league announced on Friday.

    There will be 88 “seeding” games from July 30 to August 14 prior to the postseason.

    The Clippers will square off against the Lakers in the second game on July 30 at 9 p.m. ET. The first two games will be broadcast by TNT.

    It will get very busy the next day with six games scheduled, highlighted by Celtics vs. Bucks and Rockets vs. Mavericks. There will be a maximum of seven games per day, with start times ranging from 12-9 p.m.

    At the conclusion of the seeding games, the seven teams in each conference with the highest combined winning percentages across regular-season games and seeding games will be the first through seventh seeds for the conference playoffs.  If the team with the eighth-best combined winning percentage (regular-season games and seeding games) in a conference is more than four games ahead of the team with the ninth-best combined winning percentage in the same conference, then the team with the eighth-best winning percentage would be the No. 8 seed.

    If the team with the eighth-best combined winning percentage in a conference is four games or fewer ahead of the team with the ninth-best combined winning percentage in the same conference, then those two teams would compete in a play-in tournament to determine the No. 8 playoff seed in the conference.  The play-in tournament will be double elimination for the eighth-place team and single elimination for the ninth-place team.

    Much of the intrigue regarding the seeding games concerns the final Western Conference spot. The Grizzlies, currently eighth, hold a 3 1/2-game lead over the Trail Blazers, Pelicans and Kings, a four-game lead over the Spurs and a six-game advantage on the Suns.

    Memphis will face the Blazers, Spurs, Pelicans, Jazz, Thunder, Raptors, Celtics and Bucks during the seeding round. Among the Grizzlies’ pursuers, the Pelicans appear to have the weakest schedule. After opening against the Jazz, they’ll face the Clippers, Grizzlies, Kings (twice), Wizards, Spurs and Magic.

    The Nets and Magic need only to hold off the Wizards in the East to claim the final two spots in their conference. Washington trails Brooklyn by six games and Orlando by 5 1/2 games.

    The breakdown of each team’s seeding schedule can be found here. The day-by-day schedule and national TV schedule can be found here.

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    Luke Adams <![CDATA[Batum, DeRozan Among Players With Earlier Option Decision Deadlines]]> https://www.hoopsrumors.com/?p=163648 2020-06-26T20:37:41Z 2020-06-26T20:37:41Z Most veterans who have player options in their contracts for the 2020/21 season will have an October 17 deadline to either exercise or decline that option. That Saturday represents the second-last day of the 2019/20 league year under the NBA’s new calendar, meaning it would coincide in a normal year with June 29, the usual player option decision deadline.

    However, according to ESPN’s Bobby Marks, some of the players who have to make option decisions for 2020/21 have slightly earlier deadlines. For instance, if the Spurs don’t make the postseason, DeMar DeRozan will be required to make his decision within seven days of the team’s last game, per Marks.

    The full list of player options for ’20/21 can be found on our free agents page, but here are the options which must be exercised or declined before October 17, according to Marks:

    The rest of this season’s player option decisions must be made by October 17, a deadline that applies to nearly every team option for 2020/21 as well. The only team options with earlier decision dates are minimum-salary ones for Deonte Burton (Thunder) and Sviatoslav Mykhailiuk (Pistons), which are due by October 15, per Marks.

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    Luke Adams <![CDATA[Vince Carter Officially Announces Retirement]]> https://www.hoopsrumors.com/?p=163535 2020-06-25T13:59:18Z 2020-06-25T13:52:34Z Veteran NBA forward Vince Carter has officially announced his retirement from basketball, confirming and discussing the decision on the latest episode of his Winging It podcast with Annie Finberg.

    “I’m officially done playing basketball professionally,” Carter said.

    Carter’s career came to a slightly earlier-than-expected end when the NBA was forced to suspend its season on March 11 due to the coronavirus pandemic. The Hawks still had 15 games left at that point, but they won’t be part of the resumption of the season in Orlando this summer.

    Atlanta’s last game of 2019/20 against the Knicks was still in progress when the NBA announced the suspension of the season. Recognizing that it might be the Hawks’ – and Carter’s – last game, head coach Lloyd Pierce had the 43-year-old check in with just 19 seconds left in overtime — he knocked down a three-pointer on the last shot of his career before time expired.

    The fifth overall pick in the 1998 draft, Carter spent his first six-and-half NBA seasons in Toronto, emerging as a star and helping lead the Raptors to the first three playoff appearances in franchise history, including their first postseason series win in 2001. He earned the nickname “Air Canada” during those years and played a large role in growing basketball’s popularity in the country, contributing in part to the influx of Canadian players we’ve seen enter the NBA in recent years.

    Carter played his next four-and-a-half seasons in New Jersey with the Nets, then began bouncing around the league with a little more frequency, spending time with the Magic, Suns, Mavericks, Grizzlies, Kings, and Hawks before retiring this year following his record-setting 22nd NBA season.

    For his career, the former UNC standout averaged 16.7 PPG, 4.3 RPG, and 3.1 APG in 1,541 regular season games (30.1 MPG). He also appeared in another 88 postseason contests, averaging 18.1 PPG.

    A two-time All-NBA selection and an eight-time All-Star, the veteran swingman also won the NBA’s Rookie of the Year award in 1999 and the Slam Dunk Contests in 2000. He earned a gold medal with Team USA at the 2000 Sydney Olympics, memorably dunking over French center Frederic Weis during those games.

    Carter never won a championship, but didn’t prioritize chasing a ring during his final few NBA seasons, opting instead to join young teams like the Kings and Hawks, where he could play regular minutes and impart veteran wisdom upon those clubs’ up-and-coming prospects.

    The Hawks issued a statement today congratulating Carter on his retirement and thanking him for the time he spent with the organization, calling it an “honor” to the franchise that “he completed his Hall-of-Fame career wearing Atlanta across his chest and representing our city.”

    Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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    Luke Adams <![CDATA[Grizzlies Sign Anthony Tolliver For Remainder Of Season]]> https://www.hoopsrumors.com/?p=163230 2020-06-24T01:44:19Z 2020-06-24T01:25:34Z JUNE 23: The signing is official, according to the team’s Twitter feed.

    JUNE 22: The Grizzlies and forward Anthony Tolliver have reached a verbal agreement on a deal that can be officially completed once the NBA’s transaction window opens on Tuesday, league sources tell Marc Stein of The New York Times (Twitter link).

    Stein first reported over the weekend that Tolliver was drawing interest from a handful of teams, but appeared likely to rejoin the Grizzlies. According to Darren Wolfson of 5 Eyewitness News (Twitter link), the veteran free agent ended up deciding between the Grizzlies and Raptors, opting to return to Memphis.

    Tolliver, 35, appeared in 33 games for the Trail Blazers this season and another nine with Sacramento before he was bought out by the Kings. In five games on his initial 10-day contract with the Grizzlies, he averaged 5.4 PPG and 2.4 RPG on .381/.412/1.000 shooting in 19.2 minutes per contest.

    Tolliver’s last 10-day deal, signed on March 2, had been set to expire on March 11, the night the NBA officially suspended its season. So even if the league had carried over active 10-day pacts once the season resumes, Tolliver would have needed to sign a new contract. He figures to get a rest-of-season deal that will put him on track to reach unrestricted free agency in the fall.

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    Luke Adams <![CDATA[Kris Dunn Meets Starter Criteria, Increases Value Of QO]]> https://www.hoopsrumors.com/?p=163330 2020-06-23T17:01:33Z 2020-06-23T17:01:33Z Bulls guard Kris Dunn has been deemed to have met the starter criteria as a result of the shortened season, according to ESPN’s Bobby Marks (Twitter link). As a result, Dunn will receive a qualifying offer of $7,091,457 instead of $4,642,800 this offseason if Chicago wants to make him a restricted free agent.

    We broke down Dunn’s situation in greater depth earlier this month, but the abridged version is this: A player eligible for restricted free agency receives a more lucrative qualifying offer if he starts 41 games or plays 2,000 minutes in the season before he reaches free agency, or if he averages 41 starts or 2,000 minutes in the two seasons before his free agency.

    Dunn, who started 32 games this season and 76 in total over the last two years, fell slightly short of the 41-game-per-season requirement, but the criteria became prorated due to the Bulls only playing 65 of their 82 games this season. As a result, the former No. 5 overall pick was considered to have met the starter criteria, increasing the value of his qualifying offer.

    As we’ve previously pointed out, the $2.5MM difference could have a real impact on Dunn’s free agency. It’s possible the Bulls will be less inclined to tender a qualifying offer now that it’s worth $7.1MM instead of $4.6MM. If they do move ahead with the QO, it’s possible Dunn will be more inclined to accept it.

    If Chicago doesn’t tender a qualifying offer to Dunn, he’d become an unrestricted free agent.

    As Marks and ESPN have previously reported, the NBA and NBPA also agreed to prorate the criteria for bonuses and incentives available to players in 2019/20, based on the shortened season. As a result, the following players have now achieved bonuses, according to Marks (Twitter link):

    • Rudy Gobert (Jazz): $250K for a rate of one rebound per 2.52 minutes in 62 games played.
      • Original criteria: A rate of one rebound per <3.2 minutes in 67 games.
    • Solomon Hill (Heat): $532K for 992 minutes played.
      • Original criteria: 1,000 minutes.
    • Jrue Holiday (Pelicans): $255K for 1,922 minutes played; $255K for 55 games played; $255K for 4.9 RPG in 55 games.
      • Original criteria: 2,075 minutes played; 66 games played; 3.15 RPG in 67 games.
    • Tyus Jones (Grizzlies): $858K for 32 wins.
      • Original criteria: 33 wins.
    • Kyle Lowry (Raptors): $200K for All-Star berth and 52 games played.
      • Original criteria: All-Star berth and 65 games played.
    • Patty Mills (Spurs): $250K for 149 three-pointers made.
      • Original criteria: 185 3PM.
    • T.J. Warren (Pacers): $250K for 184 three-pointers made and .375 3PT%.
      • Original criteria: 185 3PM; .370 3PT%.
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