• There’s no way of hiding it — today was quite a slow news day. Well, just for big news at least. Today the NBA world was given a day off from urgent news, though this will not continue for long. Let’s get into today’s action.

    Tuesday’s Headlines

    While I noted that the day was a relatively boring day in terms of big news, there were a few new deals and even a trade rumor!

    In slightly embarrassing news, Andre Drummond refuses to help his potential 2016 fantasy owners out. Jerk. In reality he is simply rejecting the idea of attempting free throws underhand as he reportedly has found a ‘new technique’ that he’s comfortable with. I mean I’m sure he thought last season’s stroke was nice too, carrying  him to a NBA worst 35 percent. I love Drummond and he’s very fun to watch, but at this point you might as well open to shooting them with your eyes closed — it really can’t get much worse, right?

    Training camp deals began today. Forward D.J. Kennedy — a former D-League standout in 2012 — will be joining the Nuggets on a partially guaranteed three-year deal. It’s odd that they guaranteed any of the deal but the reign of JaKarr Sampson may be coming to an end because of this. Sampson will have to fend off Kennedy for the third SF on the depth chart.

    Phil Pressey will be joining the Warriors for camp. I actually think we could see Pressey as a Warrior by the time playoffs roll around due to a lack of depth at the position, now that Barbosa has moved on. Obviously he has no fantasy value and he will likely have no real life impact until he can improve upon his ugly 34 percent mark from the field.

    Chris Copeland and Robert Sacre have earned camp invites by the New Orleans Pelicans. There’s a very small chance Copeland makes it into the final 15 roster spots. In fact, it’s near impossible with the recent roster additions. Sacre may have a spot waiting from him depending on his camp performance. If signed, he would become the third center on the depth chart and would be used for nothing more than additional depth. As we all know, Asik isn’t necessarily the ‘iron man’ of the NBA.

    Jrue Holiday will be starting the season wearing goggles in order to protect a surgically repaired orbital wall under his right eye. He is finally entering a season without any injury concerns to his legs so this is a good start for him despite the recent surgery. He could be one of the biggest steals in 8-cat and point leagues this year if healthy. Holiday received a massive usage rate towards the end of last season and produced incredible numbers, though many nights came with inefficiency. He remains a high risk/high reward draft selection.

    I have a weird love/hate relationship with trade rumors. I love the excitement but the angst that follows often comes back to bite. For me the answer is simple, a Celtics fan lives through more trade rumors than most NBA fans. The Kings are another team where players will be found rumored to leave or join the team constantly. Today it was Wolves’ guard Ricky Rubio who’s name popped up in the rumor mill today. I bashed Rubio for his performance last week but we know he’s more than a capable starting point guard in the NBA – he’s just constantly battling injury and shooting woes. But he’s a phenomenal defender, passer and floor general thus making the main issue is simply his health.

    The Kings are in serious need of back court depth and Rubio would be a solid addition at the right price. There’s been no talk on what the deal could be simply because this is a very small rumor. But it’s worth noting due to the likelihood that, 1. Rubio is traded 2. The Kings will add a point guard. Keep this rumor in the back of your mind because we will surely be revisiting it when once the season kicks off.

    Have a good one folks! Don’t forget to follow me @Brett_Squires on twitter and don’t miss any NBA news by following us @hoopballtweets.

     

     

Fantasy News

  • Blake Griffin - F - Detroit Pistons

    Blake Griffin (left knee soreness) is active for Monday's Game 4 against the Bucks, as expected.

    Griffin was listed as probable but there was pretty much zero doubt about whether or not he'd play with Detroit facing elimination. We'll see if they can extend this series tonight, even with their best player clearly working at less than 100 percent health.

    Source: Keith Langlois on Twitter

  • Malcolm Brogdon - G - Milwaukee Bucks

    Mike Budenholzer expects to have a firm target date for Malcolm Brogdon (partial right plantar fascia tear) in the next 3-to-5 days.

    Brogdon has been out since mid-March and remains on track to meet the original 6-to-8 week timetable, though he hasn't done any scrimmaging yet. It's still anticipated that Brogdon will be back in the mix some time in the second round. Once he's up to speed we'll see less George Hill, Sterling Brown and Pat Connaughton.

    Source: Matt Velazquez on Twitter

  • Chris Boucher - F - Toronto Raptors

    Chris Boucher (back spasms) has been ruled out ahead of Tuesday's Game 5 with the Magic.

    Boucher was briefly taken off the injury report ahead of Game 4 but ended up being ruled out anyway. He's highly unlikely to see the floor at all in the postseason, healthy or not.

    Source: NBA Injury Report

  • Joel Embiid - F/C - Philadelphia Sixers

    Joel Embiid (left knee soreness) is probable ahead of Tuesday's Game 5 against the Nets.

    Embiid played it coy with his status earlier today but we'd expect to see him out there in a closeout opportunity. Ending this quickly would give him some additional rest with the second round starting on the weekend at the earliest, so a focused effort would give Philly benefits on multiple fronts. Embiid's played through the injury after missing Game 3 and hasn't looked too hampered in dominating Brooklyn up front.

    Source: NBA Injury Report

  • Joel Embiid - F/C - Philadelphia Sixers

    Joel Embiid (left knee soreness) wouldn't commit to playing in Game 5 vs. the Nets on Tuesday.

    Embiid said that "We've got to keep them guessing" and it's highly likely he doesn't even know whether or not he's going to play yet. He's been a true game-time decision for the entire series and that's not going to change so stay tuned for updates closer to tip off.

    Source: Keith Pompey on Twitter

  • Ed Davis - C - Brooklyn Nets

    Ed Davis (ankle) is considered to be questionable going into Tuesday's Game 5 vs. the 76ers.

    Davis was a big part in the Nets' Game 1 win and his rebounding could serve to help Brooklyn out a ton. They just look outmatched by Joel Embiid and Boban Marjanovic and Davis could provide another big man presence down low. This could be the last game of the series so Davis' status should be a big story coming into the game.

    Source: Brian Lewis on Twitter

  • Jeff Green - F - Washington Wizards

    Jeff Green expressed that he would like to return and play for the Wizards during the 2019-2020 season.

    "I would love to come back," Green said. "Great set of guys on this team. I loved playing with Brad [Beal], John [Wall]." Green was very consistent and was on a friendly contract, but the direction in which the organization wants to go remains unclear. Green may need to find a new home given the plethora of depth the Wizards have at the forward position.

    Source: Chase Hughes of NBC Washington

  • Russell Westbrook - G - Oklahoma City Thunder

    Russell Westbrook went 5-for-21 from the field to finish with 14 points, nine rebounds, seven assists and two treys in Sunday's 98-111 Game 4 loss to the Blazers.

    Time and again in this series, it's been evident that Damian Lillard has been playing at a higher level than Westbrook and tonight was a fine example. Lillard was able to shake off his early shooting struggles and come up big in the second half, but Westbrook was still forcing shots and appeared to be on the back foot for most of the game. He's best when he's the one taking it to his opponents. A reactive Westbrook is simply not the star the Thunder need right now, if they want to salvage any hopes of coming back in this first-round series.

  • Dennis Schroder - G - Oklahoma City Thunder

    Dennis Schroder mirrored his 17-point performance from Friday with another 17-point game in Sunday's loss to the Blazers.

    Schroder shot 6-of-12 from the field and added three rebounds, three assists, two 3s and one steal to the box score tonight. Aside from him though, the Thunder's bench was deafeningly quiet. He cannot carry the load of the second unit's scoring output by his lonesome, especially when they're faced up against a team with multiple weapons like the Blazers. For now, the Thunder can only hope he keeps this up and that the other reserves will follow suit.

  • Jerami Grant - F - Oklahoma City Thunder

    Jerami Grant made just 4-of-10 shots from the field on Sunday to finish with 11 points, nine rebounds, two assists, three triples and two steals in 34 minutes.

    Grant's impact on the defensive end has been invaluable to the Thunder in this series and it was nice to see him active on the glass tonight, especially with Steven Adams being relatively quiet on that front with seven boards while adding six points, one assist, one steal and one block. Unfortunately for the Thunder, Portland's forwards, Maurice Harkless and Al-Farouq Aminu outplayed and out-hustled them on both ends of the floor.