Well, we’re officially into the down period of the offseason, with the last two dominoes falling this week with Brandon Jennings’ trade to Detroit and Greg Oden signing with the Heat. The upside to that is we can definitely start looking towards next season, and all the dominance that a healthy Greg Oden will wreak on the Eastern Conference (if a healthy Greg Oden exists). If you’re ready for that, be sure to check out Chris Sheridan’s first 2013-14 power rankings.
There’s some Oden talk later in the blog, so let’s get right to that.
- Amar’e Stoudemire won’t be heading to Hakeem Olajuwon’s big man camp, writes Ian Begley of ESPNNewYork.com: “The Knicks have decided that it’s best for Amar’e Stoudemire to rest his oft-injured knees rather than participate in Hakeem Olajuwon’s camp for big men, a source with knowledge of the decision confirmed. Stoudemire worked on his post moves at Olajuwon’s camp for two weeks last August. He was scheduled to do so again this month but plans have changed due to concerns over the health of his knees. The source with knowledge of the decision says there is nothing currently wrong with Stoudemire’s knees. The source described the decision as precautionary. Due to previous knee troubles, Stoudemire will play with a minutes limit this season. He is expected to be capped at 20 minutes per game.”
Carmelo, while speaking to children at his camp, says, “My window is closing I’m trying to bring a championship to new york ASAP.” #Knicks
— Ian Begley (@IanBegley) August 3, 2013
- Marc Stein and Jeff Goodman of SPN.com explain Greg Oden’s decision to sign with the Heat: “In a Friday night phone interview after Grantland reported that he had chosen the Heat, Oden described the mental toll from his time out of the league as a lot of “ups and downs.” “With more downs,” Oden said. He’s not sure yet how soon he’ll be ready to play in actual games, saying that he hopes to lose even more weight after slimming down to his current 275 pounds. “I could be ready to go but it’s still a work in progress,” Oden said. “My minutes and amount of playing time and all that is going to have to be monitored.” Oden said it was a “big deciding factor” that Heat officials made it clear to him that he “wouldn’t be needed as much early in the season” as he works his way back from more than three years out of the NBA. “When I had a conversation with Coach [Erik] Spoelstra and hearing how much he knew about the training stuff that I was already doing, it kind of made me feel like they know what’s best for me,” Oden said. Oden added: “I’m not going to sit here and say I’m 100 percent. I am moving [well] and I am feeling good, but I have a lot of work to do.” “
- Also on the Heat, here’s some Lamar Odom speculation from Ira Winderman of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel: “Word is Lamar’s preference is to remain in Los Angeles. But if he is amenable to the minimum, I would have to think Pat Riley would find a place for him in Miami. While he has not been the same player the past two seasons, he still would have value as a utility player, if he is willing to accept such a role.”
- The Hawks have signed DeMarre Carroll, according to a post on their official website: “The Atlanta Hawks have signed forward DeMarre Carroll (de-MAR-ay), President of Basketball Operations/GM Danny Ferry announced today. Per club policy, terms were not disclosed. “DeMarre is a great fit for our program,” Ferry said. “He is an unselfish, highly competitive player. His versatility in defending multiple positions will make him a valuable contributor to our basketball team.” Carroll, 27, posted career highs last season with the Utah Jazz in nearly every statistical category including points (6.0), rebounds (2.8), assists (0.9), steals (0.9), minutes (16.8) and starts (12). He played in 66 games, scoring 10 or more points 15 times (the Jazz were 11-4 in those games) and playing at least 20 minutes on 27 occasions. The Jazz were 16-11 in those games and his averages jumped to 9.3 points on .514 shooting, including .429 from three-point range, and 4.1 rebounds in 24.0 minutes per game. His +/- average of +1.8 led the Jazz. Prior to signing Carroll, the Hawks requested waivers on DeShawn Stevenson.”
- Some interesting talk about D-League expansion from Josh Robbins of the Orlando Sentinel: “The Magic want to have a “one-to-one” affiliation with an NBA Development League franchise that’s based within the Sunshine State. The Magic would like a “hybrid” agreement in which the Magic would run and pay for the D-League team’s basketball operations, while a separate ownership group would run the rest of the franchise. But there are a few problems. There isn’t a D-League team in Florida at the moment. And there are at least several other NBA teams that are looking for a one-to-one affiliation with a D-League team. Dan Reed, the D-League’s president, said D-League expansion is being discussed and will occur eventually. “It will be carefully managed and hopefully an intelligent expansion process,” Reed told the Orlando Sentinel. “The long-run goal is 30 teams, where every NBA team has its own NBA D-League team. I can’t tell you exactly when that will happen, but I think we’ll get closer to that in the near future.” “
Dan Malone is about to begin his fourth year as a journalism student at the University of King’s College in Halifax, Nova Scotia, and spent this summer as a features intern at the Cape Cod Times. He blogs, edits and learns things on the fly for Sheridan Hoops. Follow him on Twitter.