Evening News: Pistons make offer for Rondo; Raptors amnesty Kleiza; Kidd pleads guilty

Hello and welcome to the Evening News.

As free agency continues, we’ll keep you updated every evening.

What’s happening today?

Pistons offered package to Celtics for Rondo

According to the Detroit News’ Vincent Goodwill, the Detroit Pistons remain enamored with the possibility of teaming Josh Smith up with his childhood friend, Rajon Rondo. BOS_Rondo_Rajon (1)

The recently-signed Smith played with Rondo in high school at Oak Hill and the two have remained close friends ever since.

The Boston Globe’s Gary Washburn first reported that the Pistons had made an offer to the Celtics revolving around 2011 first round pick Brandon Knight and either Rodney Stuckey or Charlie Villanueva’s expiring contract.

The Celtics, as one might expect, turned down the offer quickly.

Unfortunately for the Pistons, their coveted 2014 first round pick is already going to Charlotte as a part of last summer’s Ben Gordon for Corey Maggette trade. And per NBA policies, Detroit cannot include their 2015 first round pick in a trade.

Boston, meanwhile, would likely consider trading Rondo if it meant they could acquire 19-year-old Andre Drummond as a centerpiece in the trade.

While the Pistons have maintained their stance that they want to see a frontcourt rotation of  Drummond, Greg Monroe, and Smith play together, it remains possible that they could trade either Drummond or Monroe to Boston in exchange for Rondo down the road.

Raptors amnesty Kleiza

Yahoo! Sports’ Marc J. Spears reports that the Toronto Raptors have decided to use their amnesty provision on Linas Kleiza. TOR_Kleiza_Linas

Kleiza had previously decided to exercise his $4.6 million player option for the 2013-2014 season. While Toronto stills owes Kleiza the money, his contract will no longer cost against the team’s salary cap. As a result, the Raptors will avoid  a luxury tax hit.

Kleiza, a 28-year-old native of Lithuania, averaged 7.4 points and 2.6 rebounds in 20 games with the Raptors last season before sustaining a season-ending knee injury. He last played on December 28th, 2012.

If no teams under the salary cap make a waiver bid for Kleiza, he will become an unrestricted free agent. While he still has the skills to remain an effective role player in the NBA, league sources indicate that Kleiza is interested in playing basketball in Europe next season.

Kidd pleads guilty to 2012 DUI NYK_Kidd_Jason

According to the Associated Press, Nets coach Jason Kidd has pleaded guilty to misdemeanor DUI charge from 2012.

Kidd has been placed on a year of probation and will have to speak to Long Island high school students about the dangers of drunk driving. He is due back in court on September 30th.

Kidd crashed his SUV into a telephone pole in the Hamptons last summer, just days after signing a three year contract with the Knicks.


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