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Michael Jordan: Hornets ‘not looking to trade’ Kemba Walker

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Charlotte Hornets majority owner Michael Jordan said Monday night he’s not looking to trade point guard Kemba Walker, and would do so only if the return included a major All-Star, such as the San Antonio Spurs’ Kawhi Leonard.

“We bred him, we chose him, we groomed him to be a good player for us,” Jordan said of Walker, who the Hornets drafted ninth overall in 2011, to a great extent because Jordan saw traits in Walker that reminded him of his own playing career.

“I’m not looking to trade Kemba, but I would listen to opportunities.”

As Jordan pointed out, his team has underachieved. An expensive veteran roster — they traded for future Hall of Fame center Dwight Howard in June — hasn’t clicked as a group on a regular basis. Jordan said there have been eight to 10 games this season he feels the Hornets should have won and didn’t.

Walker was clearly rattled Friday, following practice, when asked about the reports his name has been discussed in a possible trade. He said he would be “devastated” if the Hornets dealt him after six-plus seasons here. Walker has set down deep roots in the community and is currently building a new home here.

Walker, 27, said Friday his ultimate goal would be to play his entire career in Charlotte, which he now considers home.

Source: Rick Bonnell of the Charlotte Observer

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Sources: Nuggets Will Decline Nikola Jokic’s Team Option

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The next major contract domino for Denver is [Nikola] Jokic’s max deal. As of Sunday morning, one league source told The Denver Post that the Nuggets had not yet declined their $1.6 million team option for Jokic for 2018-19 but “will” do so, making him a restricted free agent and eligible to sign a max contract with Denver.

“Nikola’s going to be here for a long, long time,” president of basketball operations Tim Connelly said following Thursday’s NBA draft. “I think whatever we do, we’re going to ensure he’s here as long as possible. When that moment happens, we’re going to talk to Nikola and his brothers and his representation. He’ll be in Denver for a long, long time. He’ll be buying (a home) here.”

Source: Gina Mizell of The Denver Post

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Sources: Milos Teodosic Exercises Player Option with Clippers

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Los Angeles Clippers guard Milos Teodosic has exercised his $6.3 million player option for the 2018-19 season, league sources told Yahoo Sports.

Teodosic’s salary will become fully guaranteed for next season if he is on the Clippers’ roster past July 15.

Teodosic, 31, had impressive moments in his rookie NBA season in 2017-18. He averaged 9.5 points, 4.6 assists and 25.2 minutes per game in 46 contests with the Clippers. Teodosic served as a starter for 36 games and was one of the Clippers’ key playmakers.

Source: Shams Charania of Yahoo Sports

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Sources: Mike Muscala Exercises Player Option with Hawks

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Hawks forward Mike Muscala has exercised his $5M player option, source tells ESPN. He will be back with Atlanta.

Source: Adrian Wojnarowski on Twitter

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