Every morning, we compile the links of the day and dump them here… highlighting the big storyline. Because there’s nothing quite as satisfying as a good morning dump.
It appears Phil Pressey will be part of the Boston Celtics for the 2014-2015 season.
According to Gary Washburn of the Boston Globe, the Celtics have guaranteed the contract of the point guard.
The 23-year-old averaged 2.8 points and 3.2 assists in 75 games for the Celtics last season.
Good for Phil to get some guaranteed money and a chance to exhale. He showed decent point guard skills the Orlando Summer League — directing offense, passing, and defending — but his shot was nowhere to be found. Particularly during the game just hours after the C’s announced adding Marcus Thornton, Pressey shot 1-15 from the field. To be fair to progress, he did seem to have added a nice teardrop shot in the lane. The good news here, is that he was risking everything on his jumpshot, trying to prove it belonged in the NBA. Now with Ainge and Stevens guaranteeing him a roster spot this season (though he could still be traded), he can ease up a bit with forcing his shot and do what he did well last year, in passing and facilitating.
He’s got disadvantages with height and weak outside shooting, but he’s also got above-average passing ability, which is always a great thing. He’s not a rookie anymore, but I’m betting he’ll still struggle to find minutes behind Rondo, Bradley, Smart, Thornton, and Young. Guess it’s up to him to prove himself in practice.
Page 2: Lance Stephenson signs 3-year deal with Hornets
Lance Stephenson signs with the Hornets. 3 years, $27M (via @rick_bonnell)
— Chris Palmer (@ChrisPalmerNBA) July 16, 2014
Should be interesting to see how this affects the Pacers going forward. Clearly they weren’t good enough to get past the Heat, but now with a re-distribution of talent in the East, keeping their starting-five intact might have gotten them further than years past. They reportedly offered Stephenson a 5-year/$44 million contract. That per-year value seemed fair, but maybe he was looking for a shorter deal? Both deals offered roughly $9 million per season, but perhaps his idea is to showcase himself and go after a max deal in 2017. Regardless of his intentions, he’s out of Indiana — which means Rondo-to-Pacers rumors are right around the corner.
And finally, Adam Silver suggests midseason tourney
Silver’s exploratory idea would hold a tournament that would be showcased in Las Vegas. Similar to soccer, the tournament would essentially be a quick tourney for NBA teams to win a trophy outside of the NBA Championship.
It’s not immediately clear how exactly this would work. For example, the UEFA Champions League takes the best teams from around Europe, where several leagues including the Premier League in England, Bundesliga in Germany and La Liga in Spain all have top talent that afford their teams the ability to challenge for victory.
…The tournament could also pit NBA players against each other, whether by regional makeup or by current team. The idea still seems to have a lot of details to be worked out and doesn’t appear to be anywhere near ready for launch.
I like the regional idea suggested in the bottom paragraph. Maybe divide players by regions of the U.S. (East and West coasts, South, etc.), then add in Canada and somehow group together regions for Europe and South America. Still think the whole idea is a little farfetched, though: The All Star game alone can be a burden for guys who’d like to participate, but realize they’d benefit greater from a weekend away from basketball. Now try turning that weekend into an actual tournament, with several games, and some expected chippy-ness, and you’re sure to get some complaints from GMs trying to keep their stars healthy.
While he’s at it, maybe Silver can start addressing ideas to change the draft lottery. Midseason tournaments sound cool and all, but the Cavs have four former #1 picks on their roster (all of which they drafted). That should never happen.
The rest of the links:
Grantland – Free agency winners and losers