NBA News: Player News and Updates for 6/24/14
NBA Player Updates 6/24: Mavericks, Spurs, Off-Season Schedule and More
June 24, 2014
The week has only just begun, but already we’re knee-deep in news and rumors concerning the future of the NBA’s brightest stars. While we’re waiting on the draft and free agency to kick into gear, let’s take a look at some of the notable happenings out there right now.
Mavericks’ Off-Season Plans: The Dallas Mavericks have been making some headlines early this week, as news of their apparent interest on the free agent market has gone public. They’ve got a couple of players in their sights this off-season, and they’ll reportedly be pursuing Pau Gasol and Marcin Gortat when the free agency period begins.
Gasol seems to be at the top of Dallas’ wish list, but just how feasible that marriage would be is largely dependent on his market value. The Lakers’ big man made a whopping $19.3 million last season but in all likelihood will take a pretty steep pay cut given his advanced age (almost 34) and injury history.
As for Gortat, the early speculation seems to point toward a bidding war there, and the Mavericks may or may not have the funds to participate in that fight. The Wizards are expected to pay up handsomely to retain his services after an ultimately successful season, and with their load of salary cap space they can roll out the checkbook. Dallas, meanwhile, has a little over $30 million to work with, but needs to save a lot of it for veteran Dirk Nowitzki, who is the face of their franchise.
In addition to Gasol and Gortat, there are a couple of other names being tossed out there as potential Mavericks targets. The team is expected to at least meet with free-agent-to-be Carmelo Anthony, though it’s doubtful they’d be able to land him in the face of serious competition from both the Bulls and Rockets, who headline his list of possible destinations following a stint in New York.
Dallas is also expected to take a look at Luol Deng, though there are some reports out there that question his durability.
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Duncan Opts In: As pretty much everybody expected, Spurs superstar veteran Tim Duncan has opted into the last season on his current contract. Sticking with his current deal will net him $10.3 million over the course of the 2014-15 campaign.
On the surface, it sounds like this is good news for the Spurs, but there’s a subtext here that isn’t so rosy. There had initially been some speculation that Duncan would opt out of his current deal and re-sign for a two-year contract that would enable San Antonio to have some additional flexibility under the cap. Since he’s taking the one-year route, however, we may be seeing the final season of the 38-year-old future Hall-of-Famer’s career.
NBA 2014 Off-Season Schedule: It’ll be a long off-season, but we’ll have plenty of happenings (and rumors) around the league to keep us busy. The major events this summer will be the NBA Draft and the free agency period, so let’s check out the dates on those and a few others.
June 26: NBA Draft
July 1: Teams can officially begin negotiating with free agents
July 10: Players can begin signing contracts
October 4: Pre-season begins
October 28: First game of the 2014-15 season
April 18, 2015: Playoffs begin
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