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NBA Off-Season Updates: Oden, Cuban and more

August 6, 2013

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Even though the 2013-14 NBA season is still pretty far off, it’s never too early to start looking forward to the year. It’s been a while since we’ve checked in on the off-season storylines across the league, so let’s take a closer look at some of the developing situations that will have a direct impact on the upcoming season. Here’s the latest.

Oden and the Heat: The big news over this past weekend was former No. 1 pick Greg Oden’s decision to sign with the Miami Heat. It’s a two-year deal worth just over one million dollars, with the second year being an option. Oden has only managed to play in 82 games during his career (he was drafted in 2007) due to his knee issues.
As far as what he’ll look like on the court, it’s really anyone’s guess. Oden reportedly is planning on losing some additional weight, and probably won’t even take the court during the early part of the season. Still, it’s a relatively low-risk move for the Heat, who gain some additional size inside along with the recent re-singing of fan favorite Chris “Bird Man” Anderson. We’ll just have to wait and see how everything looks.

Schedule Release: Today will be a big day in terms of off-season importance. The league will release the 2013-14 regular season schedule this evening with a special on NBA TV at 6 PM ET. Fans will get to see which dates they should be marking on their calendars as big-time rivalry games or playoff rematches.

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Mavs’ Future: Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban recently posted an article on his blog that explained his thought processes over the past few seasons. He defended his decision to allow major pieces of Dallas’ 2010-11 championship run to depart the team following the lockout-shortened season, claiming he didn’t want to be saddled with an aging team within a restrictive CBA.
Cuban also lamented whiffing on Dwight Howard and Chris Paul in free agency, but believes the team got a good haul this year in new additions Jose Calderon and Monta Ellis. Even though they weren’t able to accomplish much last season (a 41-41 record and playoff absence), you’d be hard-pressed to find a whole lot of people who believe they’ll improve much this season. The looming question for this franchise is Dirk Nowitzki, who at 35 doesn’t have much time left as the team’s centerpiece. Still, Cuban has a plan for the future, and he’s been right before.

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