The shorthanded San Antonio Spurs thought they had adequately prepared for Game 1 of the Western Conference playoffs against Golden State, but coach Gregg Popovich expressed surprise and disappointment Saturday in a squad he said “looked like a deer in headlights” in a 113-92 loss.
“I thought we were very prepared physically and mentally,” Popovich said. “But I was mistaken. As I said, we looked like deer in the headlights. The defense was really poor as far as following game plan of the first quarter, and it’s a bad combination to play defense like that and not shoot at the other end.”
Source: Michael C. Wright of ESPN
Sources: Teams ‘more wary’ of Signing Kyrie Irving in Free Agency
Kyrie Irving is going to get paid. He’s going to get a max contract from someone, and the Celtics would still like to be the team that signs those checks. Let’s put that right up front.
But, man, is it getting strange out here on the Kyrie beat.
The most interesting bit of information from several sources that we’ve been able to consolidate and confirm is that some teams thought to have interest in Irving as a free agent are now a great deal more wary. Based on the way things played out with the Celtics this season and Irving’s role both off the court all year and on it in the playoff loss to Milwaukee, certain clubs are concerned about putting too many eggs in his basket right away.
Sources: Grizzlies Interview Igor Kokoskov for Head Coach
Former Suns coach Igor Kokoskov recently interviewed for the vacant Memphis Grizzlies coaching job, sources told ESPN. Kokoskov was fired last month after one season in Phoenix.
— Tim Bontemps (@TimBontemps) May 18, 2019
Source: Tim Bontemps on Twitter
Sources: Nets ‘have a real shot’ at Jimmy Butler in Free Agency
Kevin Durant may be the Nets’ top target in free agency, but he’s not the only one. The feeling around the NBA is the Nets will have a very real chance to pry four-time All-Star Jimmy Butler away from Philadelphia.
Finally having the cash and cachet to get looks from the top free agents this July, Nets general manager Sean Marks is expected to be in the hunt for both Durant and Kyrie Irving. But Butler isn’t just a fall-back plan; he’s a two-way star league sources said the Nets have a real shot at landing.
Source: Brian Lewis of the New York Post