With the football season close at hand, it won’t be too much longer before the NBA follows suit. We’ve got about two months left before the season officially begins, but in the meantime, we’re continuing to see news trickle in from all across the league. With that in mind, let’s take a closer look at some of the situations that have made headlines recently and see what’s in store for the upcoming season.
McGrady Retires: After a lengthy--and eventful--16-year run in the league, Tracy McGrady officially announced his retirement from the NBA yesterday. He got his start all the way back in 1997, when he was drafted out of high school by the Toronto Raptors (ninth overall) and went on to have stints with the Magic, Rockets, Knicks, Pistons, Hawks and Spurs.
McGrady didn’t get on the floor much during San Antonio’s run to the NBA Finals last season, but always maintained that he could have contributed more (and in retrospect, it certainly couldn’t have hurt). He leaves the league with a career 19.6 PPG average, a 5.6 RPG average and a 4.4 APG average. He was a seven-time All-Star and two-time scoring champion, putting up 18,381 points in his career. Even though he’s gone from the NBA, McGrady didn’t rule out a possible return to professional play in China. (He played for the Qingdao Eagles in 2012-13.)
Jamison to Clippers: Reports have been swirling this week about a possible deal between the Los Angeles Clippers and veteran forward Antawn Jamison. It looks like those rumors are coming true, as he was signed to a one-year, vet-minimum deal yesterday. The 37-year old is coming off a stint with the Lakers last year and carried an average of 9.4 PPG and 4.8 RPG during the season.
Jamison struggled through ligament damage in his wrist last year, but after off-season surgery he should be good to go by the time the opener arrives.
Lin-Howard Dynamic: Rockets guard Jeremy Lin made some favorable comments about his new teammate Dwight Howard recently, saying that he believes the pair will work well together given their mutual affection for the pick-and-roll game. The two haven’t yet done any training together.
One of the ongoing early-season storylines will be the chemistry in Houston between Lin, Howard and James Harden. If Howard can swallow his pride and serve as a complement to the other two instead of the driving focal point of the offense, the transition should be a smooth one and the Rockets will make significant noise out West.
Odom Latest: Here’s an interesting (and somewhat bizarre) story that has been developing over the past few days. After a report came out early this week that free-agent forward Lamar Odom was missing and feared to be on a drug binge, his agent refuted the rumors yesterday. Apparently, he is currently holed up in a Los Angeles hotel room as his family and friends attempt to get him help for a drug problem.
After marrying into the high-profile Kardashian family, Odom has made news more for his in-laws’ antics than he has for his performance on the court. The free agent reportedly wishes to play this upcoming year, and has had talks with the Clippers and Lakers this off-season. His NBA future will hinge on the outcome of this situation, however.
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