Sprung: Pelicans’ Ish Smith Making Most of Unexpected Opportunity


On Saturday, Oct. 24, three days before the start of the NBA regular season, 27-year-old guard Ish Smith was finishing up the Washington Wizards’ final preseason practice as he and his teammates prepared for Wednesday’s season opener in Orlando. Then, like he had five times before in his career, Smith got cut. Smith was one of five players on non-guaranteed contracts waived by Washington that day, an all-too-familiar occurrence for a player who spent his previous five seasons on eight different NBA


VIDEO: Milwaukee Bucks’ Khris Middleton discusses big contract, love for FIFA video games


Back in February, the Milwaukee Bucks traded starting point guard Brandon Knight in a three-team deal that netted Michael Carter-Williams from Philadelphia and young players Tyler Ennis and Miles Plumlee from Phoenix. Knight’s contract was up after the season, and his trade from Milwaukee freed up salary space for guard/forward Khris Middleton. Middleton blossomed in his third year in the league, hitting 40.7 percent of his threes and playing strong defense for the young Bucks, who rewarded the 24-year-old with a five-year,


Khris Middleton is sneaky good

Khris Middleton in action

Khris Middleton received a 5-year, $70 million extension this offseason from the Bucks. He isn’t heralded as a star, has never been an All-Star and was even traded once. And he just turned 24.     [Read more…]


Five Things To Watch: Milwaukee Bucks

Giannis Antetokounmpo Jabari Parker Bucks Own the Future Horizontal

The Milwaukee Bucks were one of last season’s biggest fairy tale stories. It’s not a common occurrence in the NBA for a team to go from a sorry 15 wins in one season to the playoffs in the very next campaign. But that’s exactly what the Bucks did in 2014-15. If that wasn’t remarkable enough, it is the factors that contributed to Milwaukee’s success that really stand out. Caoch Larry Drew was fired and replaced by Jason Kidd after Kidd’s power play


Bernucca: NBA’s Largest Pay Raises Show It Pays To Be Patient

Jimmy Butler

It pays to be patient. That is the financial lesson of the NBA’s offseason, which saw the biggest pay raises go to players who turned down contract extensions and gambled on themselves. Among the top 11 pay increases this summer, five went to players who felt like they were being lowballed by their teams — and proved it when they cashed in with bigger deals as restricted free agents this summer. Chicago’s Jimmy Butler, Orlando’s Tobias Harris, Detroit’s Reggie Jackson, Oklahoma City’s Enes


Sheridan: Midsummer Report Cards – Central Division


Day 3 of our midsummer report card distribution process brings us to the Central Division, home of the Cleveland Cavaliers and owner Dan Gilbert, whose company, Quicken Loans, will soon be offering 24 percent mortgage rates in order to cover the boss’ luxury tax bill. Just kidding. We think. It has been a busy summer for the former top pizza deliveryman in Detroit. After watching his team lose to the Golden State Warriors in Games 4, 5 and 6 to surrender the


Three-Man Weave: Who Won the East’s Offseason?

Cavs Court Feature

There has been a lot of activity during the offseason. Since July 1, there have been free agent signings totaling nearly $2 billion. In addition, there have been a dozen trades involving 22 players and 12 draft picks. But which teams have really improved themselves? And which teams have taken a step backward? In this edition of the Three-Man Weave, we take a lot at who won – and lost – the offseason in the Eastern Conference. 1. Which Eastern Conference team has had


Bernucca: 2015 NBA Draft Trade Grades

Billy King

As many predicted, there was no shortage of trades at the 2015 NBA draft. There just weren’t any big ones. We were all hoping for a blockbuster like DeMarcus Cousins to the Los Angeles Lakers or the Toronto Raptors detonating their roster. Instead, we may have to wait for the powderkeg of Kings training camp, when George Karl first asks Cousins to show harder on a pick-and-roll. We even would have settled for a team such as the Celtics or Hawks taking