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The Cavaliers and Clippers make a lot of sense as potential suitors for Kirilenko, as both teams have a need at the small forward position and want to improve their perimeter defense. The family matter will likely delay any kind of transaction, but don’t be surprised if Cleveland or Los Angeles acquires Kirilenko later in the season, assuming they don’t add another player to address their need before then.
Kirilenko had fallen out of Lionel Hollins’ rotation with the Brooklyn Nets, playing in just seven games this season for a total of 36 minutes, but he should still be able to contribute to a team if given the opportunity.
Recently, Kirilenko has been excused from the Nets as he tends to his family matter, and Hollins has said that he doesn’t know if he’ll return. There have been a number of reports indicating that Kirilenko has played his last game as a member of the Nets, and that he’ll likely be traded or bought out at some point (likely when the family matter is resolved).
The 33-year-old is in the final year of his contract and is being paid $3,326,235 this season. This is his 13th year in the NBA, and he has career averages of 11.8 points, 5.5 rebounds, 1.8 blocks and 1.4 steals.
It’s possible that Kirilenko could be traded to another team, but it certainly sounds like the Cavaliers and Clippers have significant interest in the veteran.
This is obviously an unfortunate injury for the Raptors, as DeRozan has been their leading scorer this season, averaging 19.4 points. Since emerging as an All-Star last year, DeRozan has been one of Toronto’s most important players, but now they’ll have to get by without him while this heals.
Fortunately for DeRozan, he shouldn’t need surgery. Because he already tore the tendon, he shouldn’t have to get it snipped. He essentially did the doctors’ job for them, since they often snip the adductor longus if a player is having chronic groin pain. Because DeRozan doesn’t need to go under the knife, his recovery should be quicker and early estimates have indicated he could be back in four weeks.
As I noted on Twitter, Danny Amendola of the New England Patriots suffered this same injury last season and missed four weeks too. The team was careful with him throughout the remainder of the season, monitoring him closely and sitting him for some practices, but he was able to play in their games once he returned from that initial month of being sidelined.
Football is obviously different from basketball and everybody heals differently so it remains to be seen what DeRozan’s recovery timetable will be, but this is a positive sign for Raptors fans. It shows that it is possible to get back sooner than later from this injury and that the commonly cited six-week timetable can be trimmed down. It is somewhat concerning that Amendola has really taken a step back since the injury, but that could be due to other factors in addition to the torn tendon. And again, football is very different from basketball.
Fortunately for the Raptors, they have built themselves a pretty comfortable cushion with their East-leading 13-3 record. Even if they do lose some games, the East is so bad that they shouldn’t drop in the standings too much. This is a tough blow for the Raptors, but by no means does it affect their chances of contending.
The Timberwolves didn’t have to waive a player to sign Adrien, because the NBA granted them a hardship exception that allows them to have 16 players on their roster since they have four players out due to injuries.
Adrien, 28, averaged 6.8 points and 5.8 rebounds per game last season in 53 games (12 starts) between Milwaukee and Charlotte. Adrien averaged 10.9 points and 7.8 rebounds in 28 games (12 starts) after being acquired by the Bucks on Feb. 20 in a midseason trade with the Bobcats.
A 6’7 forward, Adrien has averaged 4.8 points and 4.3 rebounds in 136 career games over four seasons between Charlotte, Golden State, Houston and Milwaukee.
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