San Antonio Spurs star forward Kawhi Leonard addressed local media on Monday for the first time since the club’s media day on Sept. 25, but he declined to disclose any information on when he might return from right quadriceps tendinopathy.
“I feel good,” Leonard said. “Soon [the time is] to come to be able to play on the floor. I’m feeling pretty healthy right now. I think they told you guys that I’ve been playing five-on-five. So that’s where I’m at right now. It’s been good. Just still, just gotta go through a few more processes of doing that. I should be back soon.”
Having missed all 23 of San Antonio’s games this season, Leonard stepped out of the locker room Monday before the team’s matchup with the Detroit Pistons at the AT&T Center wearing a pair of metallic gold Air Jordan Retro 5s with a matching black and gold sweatshirt.
Internally, the club discussed bringing Leonard back as soon as Monday, and it’s anticipated that the forward might make an appearance during San Antonio’s three-game home stand, which began Monday against the Pistons, with matchups with Miami and Boston set for Wednesday and Friday.
Source: Michael C. Wright of ESPN
Sources: Jimmy Butler Trade Talks ‘mostly dormant’
For now, Minnesota’s talks with teams around the NBA are mostly dormant, league sources told The Athletic. The Miami Heat have long been the most aggressive team pursuing Butler, having advantages with a young, promising wing in Josh Richardson, being a team not in Minnesota’s conference and holding other assets to add in a package. Yet days before their own season opener Wednesday, Miami president Pat Riley informed his locker room that the team would stick with the current roster to start the season in a show of loyalty the organization has for their current players, league sources said.
Source: Shams Charania of The Athletic
Sources: HEAT, Pat Riley ‘pulling the plug’ on Jimmy Butler Trade
In another rare confirmation of Miami Heat trade negotiations, a team spokesman confirmed shortly before Thursday night’s game that Heat President Pat Riley recently told the team’s players he was “pulling the plug” on trade negotiations regarding disgruntled Minnesota Timberwolves guard Jimmy Butler.
Amid growing speculation of specific Heat players being offered for Butler, Riley, during a recent practice session, lined up the team’s players on the practice court at AmericanAirlines Arena and told them he was standing by them.
Riley, however, did not state that a trade was categorically off the table.
Report: G League to Offer $125K Salaries to Elite Prospects
The NBA G League today announced a Select Contract as part of a comprehensive professional path that will be available, beginning with the 2019-20 season, to elite prospects who are eligible to play in the NBA G League but not yet eligible for the NBA. The contracts, which will include robust programmatic opportunities for development, are for elite players who are at least 18 years old and will pay $125,000 for the five-month season.
“Select Contracts are an answer to the basketball community’s call for additional development options for elite players before they are eligible for the NBA,” said NBA G League President Malcolm Turner. “The supporting infrastructure surrounding these newly-created Select Contracts is designed to provide a rich offering of basketball and life skills developmental tools for top young players to grow along their professional paths from high school to the pros.”