It’s getting colder. It’s getting dark sooner. Every major sport in America is either in session or beginning to take off.
This has to be the best time of the year.
NBA season is a little more than a month away, but that doesn’t mean we can’t cover it. Here are the biggest stories of the week:
Report: Lamar Odom’s drug habit got so bad his dealer had to cut him off. Life is crazy sometimes. You make one mistake (marry someone terrible) and your entire life begins to snowball out of control. But, hey, that’s what you get when you marry a Kardashian.
Heat sign free agent Michael Beasley to training camp deal. I love this deal on so many levels. Miami already has its ‘Big 3’ so there isn’t a lot of money to throw around. Pat Riley and the front office are forced to make smarter decisions with their limited budget. Taking a chance on a former 1st round (No. 2 overall) 24 year old with some issues off the court makes perfect sense. Low risk, high reward.
Hakeem Olajuwon thinks Blake Griffin needs his help. Everybody ‘needs’ Olajuwon’s help. He was arguably the greatest post player in NBA history.
Report: Gordon Hayward, Jazz talking contract extension. Hayward is coming off a career-high 14.1 points per game, and he’s only 23 years of age. He could become an all-star in the league. Utah should be talking about a contract extension with Hayward.
Brandon Davies signs with the Los Angeles Clippers. Davies, of course, is most known for being suspended from BYU for violating their honor code for having premarital sex with his girlfriend. Good for him on finding a job in the league because a great percentage don’t. I’m rooting for the guy.
Second round pick Justin Hamilton to sign with Heat.
Cuban makes it clear he will not trade Dirk Nowitzki. He’s been the face of the franchise since his rookie season in 1998-99. I wouldn’t trade him unless I got a great deal in return.
Free agent Justin Holiday has workouts scheduled with Utah, Miami.
Pelicans forward Darius Miller sidelined up to 12 weeks with fracture in foot. I still can’t get over the mascot name of New Orleans…did we really have to go with Pelicans?
LeBron James: No plans yet for 2014. Deep down inside, I know that he wants to go BACK to Cleveland to win that city a ring. I just know it, but he should be focused on winning as many rings in Miami with that stacked team because Miami’s window will eventually run out.
Kevin Garnett has been mentoring Rondo on how to lead Celtics, according to sources. Garnett is one of the best leaders in NBA history. Not a bad guy to learn from, but is leadership something you can teach?
Carmelo Anthony: Knicks are better than last year.
Agent: Bulls’ Luol Deng to explore free agency.
Cavaliers sign point guard Matthew Dellavedova to two-year deal. Dellavedova was easily my favorite college basketball players when he played at Saint Mary’s. I loved everything about him – his passion, his deep range, his play making ability, his heart, his hustle, his leadership. I’m stoked that somebody gave him a chance.
‘I feel great about my choice,’ Josh Smith says of coming to the Pistons.
Free-agent guard Darius Morris reaches deal with 76ers.
Kobe Bryant remains uncertain if he will play in Lakers’ season opener. If I had to guess, Kobe will be playing in the first game of the season. Never doubt that man.
Biggest Takeaways Of The Week
1. Heat Sign Michael Beasley
How is this a bad thing? Sure, Beasley does have some off-the-court issues to clean up, but where’s the risk? The reward is MUCH better than the risk. Beasley is just 24 years old and has averaged at least double digits in every season of his young career. When he played his most minutes per game (32.3 in 2010-11) Beasley averaged a career-high 19.2 points per game. With the addition of two low risk, high reward players – Greg Oden and Michael Beasley – the Heat have managed to make two huge moves for cheap. And they picked up two guys who were drafted No. 1 and No. 2 overall. If they don’t work out, cut them. This is a great move for Miami.
2. LeBron James discusses 2014 situation
LeBron was asked about 2014 free agency and he gave an honest answer: he has no plans yet. Ok, that’s fine, I guess. I mean, there’s not much more he can say. He went on to discuss how he loves the city and wishes he could stay there his entire career. What do we want him to say when asked?
3. Kevin Garnett talks to Rajon Rondo on how to lead the Celtics
Like I previously mentioned, can you teach leadership? I honestly don’t think so. Leadership is a quality you pick up from childhood, as you’re growing up. If leadership was teachable, wouldn’t we see many more with it? That kind of quality doesn’t grow on trees.