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On Friday, Jude LaCava of Fox 10 in Phoenix reported that the Minnesota Timberwolves are willing to offer Phoenix Suns guard Eric Bledsoe the max deal he is seeking. However, the Timberwolves are over the salary cap and need to execute a sign-and-trade with the Suns in order to give Bledsoe a max deal (a tricky, and unlikely transaction).
Later on Friday, Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports reported that the Suns are not interested in a sign-and-trade deal with the Timberwolves, and that the Suns were only willing to deal Bledsoe if it included Kevin Love. With Love now in Cleveland, it looks as though a deal sending Bledsoe to Minnesota will not take place.
With the upcoming season around the corner, it seems likely that Bledsoe will sign Phoenix’s qualifying offer, and enter next offseason as an unrestricted free agent. This is a risky move for Bledsoe as he could suffer a significant injury before securing a long-term deal. However, it is also a risky move for the Suns as Bledsoe will become an unrestricted free agent, and will have plenty of teams offering him significant deals next offseason. Phoenix will be able to offer Bledsoe the most money, but it may not matter as the relationship between Bledsoe and the Suns has reportedly strained this offseason because of the lingering contract situation.
Last season, in 43 games, Bledsoe averaged 17.7 points, 4.7 rebounds, 5.5 assists, and 1.6 steals per game.
Ray Allen remains silent on whether he will retire or return for his 19th season in the NBA. The Washington Wizards, who are currently looking for help at the shooting guard position, recently reached out to Allen in the hopes that he would consider Washington as a destination if he does return this upcoming season.
Allen has no shortage of suitors as more than half of the NBA has reportedly reached out to the veteran guard. Top teams like the Chicago Bulls, San Antonio Spurs and Cleveland Cavaliers are reportedly wooing Allen, which makes a move to Washington seem unlikely. However, the Wizards do have Allen’s former Boston teammate Paul Pierce on the roster, which could be a nice selling point for the Wizards.
Still, even though the Wizards are an up-and-coming team, it seems more likely that if Allen is to return for one final year, it will likely be with a team that is a favorite to win it all next season, like the Spurs. We won’t know for sure until Allen makes up his mind, a decision that reportedly may not be made until midseason.
Warriors guard Shaun Livingston underwent surgery to clean out debris in his right big toe on August 13. It was projected that Livingston would be inactive for a minimum of six-to-eight weeks. Over five weeks later, it remains uncertain how long Livingston will be inactive, according to Marc J. Spears of Yahoo Sports.
The Warriors signed Livingston to a three-year, $16 million contract this offseason after he played with the Brooklyn Nets on a one-year veteran’s minimum deal last season. Livingston has bounced around the league for years after suffering a traumatic knee injury early in his career, but proved last season that he can be a valuable contributor with his unique skill-set and defensive abilities.
Livingston could provide a big boost for the Warriors off the bench as Golden State got uneven performances from Steve Blake and Jordan Crawford last season. In addition, Livingston has the size and skill to play both guard positions, which will allow him to fill in for both Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson when needed. Livingston is a poor three-point shooter (career 20.4 percent), but is a skilled passer, playmaker and defender.
The Warriors, under new head coach Steve Kerr, are looking to prove that they are one of the NBA’s top teams this upcoming season after losing in the first round of the playoffs last year to the Los Angeles Clippers.
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