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NBA Rumors Round-Up

NBA Rumors: Blazers Standing Pat?

Don’t expect a big trade from the Blazers … Shawne Williams entering the D-League? … Kobe Bryant wants to give up All-Star spot

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Check out our breakdown of the biggest rumors of the day in our NBA Rumor Round-Up. For more rumors and news, check out Basketball Insiders’ headlines, which are constantly being updated.

Blazers Standing Pat at Deadline?

Paul Allen addressed members of the media during halftime of the Blazers-Nuggets game and this is what he had to say regarding the Blazers.

Any trades at the deadline?

“I think we’re looking more internal development with changes we can make or tweaks we can make. I don’t think we’re looking at any blockbuster trades or anything like that. Though, we’re always listening.”

via Chris Haynes of CSNNW.com

The Portland Trail Blazers are currently 32-11, which is good for third place in the Western Conference, so it makes sense that they aren’t interested in making any drastic changes as the Feb. 20 trade deadline approaches. If it isn’t broken, don’t fix it.

Portland made their moves over the offseason, when they added Robin Lopez, Mo Williams, Dorell Wright, C.J. McCollum and Thomas Robinson among others to their already talented roster. Those moves, coupled with improvement from Damian Lillard, LaMarcus Aldridge, Wesley Matthews and Nic Batum, have led to their surprising success.

The Blazers have some areas where they can improve, specifically on the defensive end of the floor, but it doesn’t sound like they’ll be doing so through a trade.

Shawne Williams Enters D-League

Shawne Williams played in 32 games for the Los Angeles Lakers this season before being waived by the team, now the NBA veteran forward is heading to the NBA D-League according to sources.

Williams is in search of a 10-day contract, and likely figures a stint in the NBA D-League will give him the best shot for another NBA opportunity.

The 6-9, 230 pound forward averaged 5.1 points, and 4.4 rebounds in 20.2 minutes for the Lakers earlier this season.

via Gino Pilato of D-League Digest

Shawne Williams has bounced around the NBA throughout the course of his career, but this would be the veteran forward’s first stint in the D-League. As the article stated, Williams would enter the D-League in hopes of landing a 10-day contract and resuming his NBA career.

Williams spent the offseason training at the IMG Academy in Bradenton, FL and he received interest from a number of teams as an unrestricted free agent. He ultimately decided to sign with the Los Angeles Lakers because of his relationship with Mike D’Antoni and the opportunity to have a significant role.

Entering the D-League would be smart for Williams because it shows teams that he’s willing to do whatever it takes to continue playing in the league. Other players have taken a similar route back to the NBA, including Jamaal Tinsley and Gerald Green in recent years.

Kobe Bryant Wants to Sit Out All-Star Game

Having only played in six of the Los Angeles Lakers’ first 43 games this season, Kobe Bryant does not feel he is deserving of his starting All-Star bid and plans to sit out the Feb. 16 game in New Orleans.

“With all due respect to the fans that voted me in, I certainly appreciate that, they know how much I appreciate that, but you got to do the right thing as well,” Bryant said before the Lakers’ 109-102 loss to the Miami Heat on Thursday night. “My fans know you got to reward these young guys for the work that they’ve been putting in.”

“I think it’s important for them to go in and perform,” Bryant said. “They’ve been playing all season. They deserve to be in there. They deserve to play. So, I see no reason why they shouldn’t be out there doing their thing.”

via Dave McMenamin of ESPNLosAngeles.com

Even though Kobe Bryant believes he’s going to return prior to the All-Star game, he wants to see some of the Western Conference’s young guards earn an All-Star bid over him since he has barely played during the 2013-14 season.

Bryant made similar comments during voting, advising fans to “vote for some of these younger players, the Damian Lillards” instead of him.

If the NBA forces Bryant to play, he said that he’ll only play two minutes and then sit down. His preference would obviously be to give the spot to someone who deserves it more.

This season, Bryant is averaging 13.8 points, 6.3 assists and 4.3 rebounds in six games.

Alex Kennedy is the Managing Editor of Basketball Insiders and this is his 10th season covering the NBA. He is a member of the Professional Basketball Writers Association.

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