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Nikola Mirotic: Potential Trade Has Been ‘motivation’

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Bulls forward Niko Mirotic admits that all the trade speculation surrounding his future in Chicago has been a motivating factor for him as he continues the best stretch of his NBA career. Monday marked the first day of the season on which Mirotic could be traded.

“This is kind of some motivation for me,” Mirotic said after Monday’s 119-111 win over the Miami Heat. “I know it sounds weird. But people are talking, ‘OK, Niko be gone’ and ‘Bye bye, Niko’ or whatever. But for me, it’s OK, just do what you’ve got to do. Play well and try to do your best until the last day and not be distracted. I know a lot of people were asking me before this, ‘OK, Niko, Jan. 15’s coming, what do you think?’

“No, I’m not thinking about Jan. 15. I’m thinking day by day, doing my job, being consistent, everybody’s talking about that the last couple years, and that’s my goal. Because when I focus day by day, it’s for me easier.”

“I am enjoying this moment,” Mirotic said. “The team is winning. I am playing well. That’s all I can ask … I know my name is going to be there [in trade speculation]. But I’m doing my job, I’m sure [the Bulls front office is] doing their job, and we’re both going to do what’s the best for the team.”

Source: Nick Friedell of ESPN

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2019 Free Agency Diary

Sources: ‘Increasing expectation’ Chris Paul Will Start Season with Thunder

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The Oklahoma City Thunder’s discussions to move nine-time All-Star guard Chris Paul to a new destination are parked, and an increasing expectation exists that he will start the season with the team, league sources tell ESPN.

Oklahoma City has been working with Paul and his representatives on finding a trade, but nothing is materializing so deep into summer free agency, sources said. Both sides believe there are benefits to Paul, 34, playing out the season with the Thunder. For now, there’s a belief that there could be more success exploring trade scenarios again after Dec. 15 — or even the completion of the 2019-20 season, league sources said.

The market expands on Dec. 15, when players who signed offseason free-agent deals can become eligible to be included in trade packages.

Source: Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN

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2019 Free Agency Diary

Report: Reggie Bullock Undergoes Surgery on Cervical Disc Herniation

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Medical Update: Reggie Bullock underwent successful surgery today at the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York for a cervical disc herniation. The team will plan to provide an update on his rehab and progress around the start of training camp.

Source: New York Knicks on Twitter

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2019 Free Agency Diary

Sources: Cameron Payne, Raptors Agree to Deal

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Guard Cameron Payne has agreed to a two-year deal with the Toronto Raptors, league sources tell
@TheAthleticNBA @Stadium.

Source: Shams Charania on Twitter

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