Player News

Date: Team: Pos:

Mirza Teletovic will not play for Bosnia in the European Championship.

If for some reason the Suns do not get a power forward back in a Markieff Morris deal, Teletovic and Jon "Johnny Basketball" Leuer would be the only true power forwards on the roster. You have to be in a very deep league to give Mirza a look.
Aug 29 - 2:16 PM
Alex Len - C - Suns

Alex Len will not play for the Ukraine in the European Championship.

He's not hurt and this is a precaution. Len has been struggling with injuries -- his ankles in particular -- and the Suns have to be happy with this move. For now, his fantasy value is tough to project with Markieff Morris on the block, but the Suns would likely get a power forward back in a deal. Len's upside is intriguing enough to make him your last pick.
Aug 29 - 2:14 PM

Steve Clifford said that "strength" will be the key for Frank Kaminsky to contribute as a rookie.

"Just strength. And obviously him adjusting to the NBA game," Clifford said. "But he’s a quick learner and a good worker. He’ll pick things up quickly. That applies to both ends of the floor. He’s so good off the dribble that he would beat guys but be pushed off (his lane to the rim) a little bit. So a lot of times, where in college he got to the basket, he was instead taking 8-to-10 footers. As he gets stronger, he’ll be at the basket again." The Hornets absolutely love Kaminsky, so he has an excellent chance to start over Cody Zeller and Tyler Hansbrough this season. Kaminsky is the one you will want to take a flier on in the later rounds.
Aug 29 - 1:47 PM

Steve Clifford said that Jeremy Lin will see some time next to Kemba Walker in two-PG lineups this season.

"It’s always good to have two pick-and-roll players on the floor," Clifford said. "That way you can put pressure on the defense at one side, then switch it to the other. That makes more room to play similar to how Golden State does. You’ve got Steph [Curry] on one side, so defenses have to load up there, and then you’ve got Klay Thompson on the other with room to operate." It sounds like Lin could see minutes in the 20s for the Hornets this season, but he is still unlikely to emerge as a reliable asset in standard leagues while Walker is healthy.
Aug 29 - 1:43 PM

Steve Clifford hinted that Nicolas Batum will play multiple positions for the Hornets this season.

"His versatility, his basketball IQ and his skill level," Clifford said in response to how important Batum's versatility will be for his team. "He can guard different positions and offensively he can play [shooting guard, small forward or power forward]. He has size and quickness and his decision-making on the floor is so good." Batum couldn't have landed in a better situation after a miserable 2014-15 campaign in Portland, and he should be a focal point for Charlotte's offense. Batum will be relatively cheap on draft day and he is an excellent bounce-back candidate, so he could be a steal in the fourth round of drafts.
Aug 29 - 1:40 PM

Hornets head coach Steve Clifford said that Al Jefferson has been on a "month-to-month" plan to lose weight.

"I was in Santa Monica with him about 2 1/2 weeks ago," Clifford said. "He had a plan month-by-month with [strength and conditioning coach] Matt Friia. He’s on target. He feels good and looks good. Now he has to finish up in August and September." This obviously implies that Jefferson's plan is going well, so he should be able to improve upon his 2014-15 averages of 16.6 points, 8.4 rebounds, 1.7 assists and 1.3 blocks in what will be a contract year. Jefferson missed 17 games due to injury last season, so he might be available at a discount in the middle rounds.
Aug 29 - 1:33 PM

Hornets head coach Steve Clifford said that Cody Zeller's rehab from shoulder surgery has gone well and that he has been working on his shooting.

"He did a great job -- everything he could have done with the rehab," Clifford said. "He’s been on the floor for the last seven weeks, doing a lot of shooting. He’s back to the same weight he was after losing some weight with the injury." Zeller appears to be on track to be 100 percent for training camp, and he will be eager to prove himself after a mildly disappointing 2014-15 campaign in which he averaged 7.6 points, 5.8 rebounds, 1.6 assists, 0.5 steals and 0.8 blocks. The Hornets brought in Frank Kaminsky who could potentially start right out of the gate, so there is no real reason to draft Zeller in standard leagues.
Aug 29 - 1:25 PM

When asked what makes up a core player, Jim Buss said that Jordan Clarkson is the perfect example.

"I don't have a checklist, but I'd say a perfect example would be a Jordan Clarkson," Buss said. "Watching him develop into [what we hoped he would be] ... his work ethic, his style of play, his team, his personality, the way he is with teammates, what he wants in life." The Lakers are obviously thrilled with how their 2014 second-round pick has performed early on in his NBA career, and it's going to be exciting to see how well he plays alongside D'Angelo Russell in the backcourt. Clarkson won't get too many touches with Kobe Bryant, Lou Williams and Russell around, but he still has enough upside to warrant a pick in the later rounds.
Aug 29 - 12:07 PM

The Orlando Magic will invite undrafted guard Jordan Sibert to training camp.

Sibert averaged 16.1 points, 3.3 boards, 2.0 assists, 1.7 steals and 2.2 3-pointers for Dayton last season, but he is very unlikely to make the final roster for Orlando.
Aug 29 - 11:51 AM

Andrea Bargnani's ankle is fine and he is expected to play for Italy at Eurobasket.

Bargnani was forced to leave Italy's game against Georgia in the first quarter and never returned, but this means that the MRI came back clean. Any time Bargnani goes down there is going to be some concern considering his extensive injury history, but it looks like the coast is clear.
Aug 29 - 11:22 AM

Andre Drummond posted some videos on his Instagram account showing off his ball-handling skills.

This is pretty irrelevant, but he has made it very clear on social media that he has been working hard this summer and he should be in excellent shape for the upcoming season. Drummond will be playing for a new contract this season even though it's basically a lock that he will get a max deal, but a little added motivation never hurt anybody. Drummond is an early-round target despite his terrible free throw percentage.
Source: M Live
Aug 29 - 11:06 AM

Elfrid Payton said that he has been working hard with shooting coach Dave Love this summer.

"I think my shot will be better this year," Payton said. "Picking my spots, knowing when to take my shot. That's the biggest thing that will be better. Just having experience, understanding the game more, will help as well." Last season Payton shot just 42.5 percent from the field, 26.2 percent from 3-point range and 55.1 percent from the charity stripe, so it's great to see that he is addressing his weaknesses. His ceiling in standard leagues would rise dramatically with some improved shooting percentages, so he could potentially be a steal towards the end of the middle rounds.
Aug 29 - 10:47 AM

Jim Buss said that Roy Hibbert is a "perfect fit" because he allows them to be flexible next summer.

Hibbert is on the last year of his deal which means he could basically be a one-year rental if the Lakers want to move on next summer. Buss also called Hibbert a "stopper" and loves the way he protects the rim, so it sounds like he is going to be given plenty of opportunity to succeed. If you are eyeing boards and blocks in the second half of your fantasy draft, Hibbert is worth a look.
Aug 29 - 10:11 AM

Lakers part-owner and executive vice president of basketball operations Jim Buss said that Kobe Bryant will work something out with head coach Byron Scott regarding his minutes for the upcoming season.

Scott faced a lot of criticism last season for playing Bryant over 34 minutes per game last season, so they are obviously going to be a lot more cautious moving forward. Bryant recently started shooting again and is on track for training camp, but don't be surprised if he is eased back into action. This could be the Black Mamba's last season in the NBA, but fantasy owners should probably look the other way on draft day due to the health concerns.
Aug 29 - 9:57 AM

Meyers Leonard said that he is ready to take on a leadership role with Damian Lillard.

"Obviously, [Damian Lillard] and I are the guys who have been here the longest and he's going to be our leader," Leonard said. "But I hope to be right there by his side, kind of a co-leader, right there having his back through the ups and downs." Leonard will battle Ed Davis, Noah Vonleh and Mason Plumlee for minutes this season, but he figures to have a substantial role even if doesn't end up starting. Leonard has plenty of upside and his 3-point range is intriguing, so give him a look in the later rounds.
Source: CSN NW
Aug 29 - 9:47 AM


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