Adrian Wojnarowski

  • Brazilian point guard Marcelo Huertas planning move to NBA

    Adrian Wojnarowski at Yahoo Sports 1 hr ago

    After years of playing significant roles in the Euroleague and on the Brazilian national team, point guard Marcelo Huertas is planning a move to the NBA next season, Yahoo Sports has learned.

    Huertas, 31, a savvy, athletic 6-foot-3 playmaker and a deft shooter, is expected to be aggressively pursued as a backup guard in July free agency.

    Huertas has been anchored to the Spanish ACB League the past six years with long-term deals that contained significant NBA buyouts, but finally is free of those hurdles. He hasn’t ruled out returning to FC Barcelona next year if the right NBA offer doesn’t emerge, but Huertas is determined to take a serious look at joining the NBA.

    “This is the right time,” Huertas told Yahoo Sports.

    Huertas has played six seasons for FC Barcelona of the Spanish ACB, leading Barca to three consecutive Euroleague Final Four appearances. He’s averaging 7.4 points and 4.9 assists for Barcelona this season. Huertas is a career 87 percent free-throw shooter.

    Huertas has been Brazil’s point guard in numerous Olympic Games, World Championships and FIBA America tournaments. He averaged 11 points and five assists for Brazil in the 2012 London Olympic Games.

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  • Sources: Grizzlies need 48 hours to assess Mike Conley’s status after surgery

    Adrian Wojnarowski at Yahoo Sports 3 hrs ago

    After surgery to repair a facial fracture on guard Mike Conley, the Memphis Grizzlies need to wait 48 hours for the swelling to subside before gaining a clearer understanding of a timeline for a possible playoff return, league sources told Yahoo Sports.

    There are scenarios in which Conley could return in a possible Western Conference semifinal series against the Golden State Warriors, league sources said, but that’s uncertain until the healing process begins, the pain lessens and Conley can be fitted for a mask.

    Conley underwent surgery Monday in Memphis after sustaining a facial fracture under his left eye in the Grizzlies’ Game 3 victory over Portland on Saturday night.

    Memphis leads 3-0 in its best-of-seven Western Conference series against the Blazers. Game 4 is set for Monday night in Portland.

    Conley is a major part of the Grizzlies’ success, averaging 15.8 points and 5.4 assists in the regular season.

    Without Conley, the Grizzlies will rely on Beno Udrih and Nick Calathes to shoulder a bigger burden.

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  • Austin Rivers helps save Clippers' season, brings tears to his father's eyes

    Adrian Wojnarowski at Yahoo Sports 14 hrs ago

    SAN ANTONIO – When Doc Rivers walked into the locker room, the scene stopped him. Chris Paul called on the Clippers to congratulate the young guard responsible for saving the season and present him the game ball. Everyone clapped. Everyone let out a long, loud cheer for Austin Rivers.

    "For a moment, for a half second maybe, I became a dad in there," Doc Rivers told Yahoo Sports later on Sunday at the AT&T Center. The tears welled in his eyes, but he quickly wiped them away and stiffened in the concrete corridor.

    To trade for his son, Rivers had to make a case on the move's merits to a dubious basketball community. He's had to live with the criticism. They've had to live with it together. They had Sunday together, too.

    Austin Rivers had his finest moment in the NBA on Sunday, scoring 16 points, delivering defense, deflections and a 114-105 victory over the San Antonio Spurs to bring this best-of-seven series back to Staples Center at 2-2. He made deft drives to the basket and fearless finishes to stun the Spurs.

  • Did 'bush league' play complicate Love, Celtics' mutual free-agent intrigue?

    Adrian Wojnarowski at Yahoo Sports 19 hrs ago

    For as much as Kevin Love has publicly resisted the discussion of free agency this season, it has been on his mind. He has never been completely comfortable in Cleveland, with his role, nor his connection to those around him. Throughout the year, league sources say, one destination grew in possibility as his exit strategy: The Boston Celtics.

    Boston has been no sure thing to lure Love, but it had a better shot than most had believed. If Love left the Cavaliers, the Celtics had closed the gap on the Los Angeles Lakers, league sources told Yahoo Sports.

    The Celtics were waiting for July, and the chance to let coach Brad Stevens lay out Love's expanded role in his system. General manager Danny Ainge wanted a chance to sell Love on a vision for surrounding him with complementary talent, on maximizing his popularity as New England's next star.

    And so, suddenly, maybe everything changed on Sunday. Kelly Olynyk and Love tangled, Love's left shoulder apparently separated and clearly he's beyond furious. He called the play "bush league," and insisted that Olynyk "did it on purpose."

  • Why Kawhi Leonard will be the NBA's most intriguing free-agent recruiter this summer

    Adrian Wojnarowski at Yahoo Sports 2 days ago

    SAN ANTONIO – Amid a gulf of salary-cap space in Los Angeles and New York, the promise of glitzy pitches and powerful personas, the summer's most impactful recruiter promises to come with a muffled grunt, a shrug of his shoulders and hands so massive that they could snare the biggest free-agent star of them all.

    San Antonio's Kawhi Leonard can sell Portland's LaMarcus Aldridge on something that Kobe Bryant and Phil Jackson and Carmelo Anthony are unable: the chance to play with basketball's best burgeoning two-way player, to secure his standing within a Spurs monolith rumbling beyond the genius of Tim Duncan and Manu Ginobili and into the second act of this generation's greatest basketball dynasty.

    In a perfect scenario, the Spurs have a full understanding of the futures of Duncan, Ginobili and Danny Green when they walk into a 12:01 a.m. ET meeting on July 1 with Leonard and his agent, Brian Elfus, in Los Angeles. The Spurs will offer Leonard a full maximum contract extension, get a commitment and turn themselves toward prying Aldridge back to his Texas roots.

    "Can anybody tell? I don't know."

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  • Antony Ressler finalizes deal to buy Hawks

    Adrian Wojnarowski at Yahoo Sports 4 days ago

    Private equity billionaire Antony Ressler is leading a group that has finalized an agreement to purchase the Atlanta Hawks.

    Ressler’s group will purchase the team from majority owner Bruce Levenson for a figure somewhere between $800 million-plus and $900 million, sources told Yahoo Sports.

    Former NBA All-Star Grant Hill and Atlanta entrepreneur Jesse Itzler will be investors in the group, sources said.

    The new ownership group, which will need to be approved by the NBA’s Board of Governors, is planning to retain Hawks CEO Steve Koonin and keep him in charge of the organization’s day-to-day business.

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  • Sources: Providence guard Kris Dunn plans to return for junior season

    Adrian Wojnarowski at Yahoo Sports 5 days ago

    Providence guard Kris Dunn plans to return for his junior season and bypass the NBA draft, league sources told Yahoo Sports.

    A formal announcement is expected soon, sources told Yahoo Sports.

    Dunn is the highest-rated underclassman still publicly undecided about entering the June NBA draft. NBA executives believe the 6-foot-4 Dunn could have ascended into the late lottery – or the mid-part of the first round.

    Draftexpress.com has Dunn pegged at No. 13 in its most recent mock draft.

    Dunn, 21, averaged 15.6 points, 7.5 assists and 2.7 steals for the Friars last season.

     

  • Thunder fire coach Scott Brooks

    Adrian Wojnarowski at Yahoo Sports 5 days ago

    The Oklahoma City Thunder has fired head coach Scott Brooks.

    Thunder general manager Sam Presti traveled to meet Brooks near his California home on Wednesday and delivered the news, sources told Yahoo Sports.

    Presti's decision wasn't a reflection of the job Brooks did this season, but ultimately a long view for the franchise, sources told Yahoo.

    Oklahoma City missed the playoffs for the first time in six years this season, finishing 45-37 with superstar Kevin Durant lost for most of the year.

    Florida coach Billy Donovan is expected to become a serious candidate to replace Brooks, sources told Yahoo.

    Presti has a longstanding friendship with Donovan, a two-time national championship coach who has been open about his interest in moving to the NBA.

    Connecticut coach Kevin Ollie could be a candidate for the Thunder's coaching job, league sources told Yahoo Sports. Ollie was a teammate with Durant and Russell Westbrook in Oklahoma City and he's an individual whom Presti holds in high esteem. But before Brooks' firing, Ollie issued a statement through a UConn spokesman on Wednesday saying he had no "plans" to pursue other jobs.

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  • Josh Smith's partnership with Dwight Howard flourishing as Rajon Rondo unravels with Mavs

    Adrian Wojnarowski at Yahoo Sports 5 days ago

    HOUSTON – Josh Smith felt like a teenager again, ferocious and free and forever young. He had broken down Dallas' defense, a soft, vulnerable underbelly reduced to rubble. These were old times, tossing those lobs into the air, watching Dwight Howard slam through passes. Old AAU teammates in Atlanta, bringing a barrage to these Houston Rockets, bringing down the house.

    "This was the Peach Jam, the Big Time tournament in Vegas," Smith told Yahoo Sports. He was remembering old AAU circuit stops for the Atlanta Celtics, laughing in the locker room now, awaiting to share a news conference podium with Howard. The fourth quarter belonged to Smith and Howard, the kind of rim runs that long ago sent these two past college and directly into millionaire NBA lives.

    They had run him out of Atlanta and Detroit, and now Josh Smith had run the Dallas Mavericks out of Houston with a 2-0 series lead, with a deeper regret for failing to sign him in January.

    "This is why I came here," Smith told Yahoo Sports.

    Yes, this is why Josh Smith had come here.

  • Sources: Nuggets begin coach search with several candidates on list

    Adrian Wojnarowski at Yahoo Sports 11 days ago

    The Denver Nuggets will begin their coaching search on Thursday, a process that will include serious consideration of interim coach Melvin Hunt, league sources told Yahoo Sports.

    After replacing Brian Shaw, Hunt had the Nuggets playing much better basketball, finishing a 30-52 season on a much more competitive 10-13 run.

    Nuggets general manager Tim Connelly and president Josh Kroenke plan a broad search with a candidate list that will include – among others – ex-head coaches Michael Malone, Mike D'Antoni, Scott Skiles and Alvin Gentry, league sources said.

    Portland Trail Blazers assistant coach David Vanterpool will be one of a handful of assistant coaches contacted about the job, sources said.

    The search will include several college coaching candidates, including Florida's Billy Donovan and Iowa State's Fred Hoiberg, league sources told Yahoo Sports.

    With the uncertain future of Oklahoma City coach Scott Brooks, his potential availability on the market would make him a strong candidate for the Nuggets job, as well as Orlando's opening, league sources said.

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