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NBA Rumors for Friday, November 21
InsideHoops NBA rumors updated 5:00 p.m. ET. More NBA rumors stories and other news also appears on the InsideHoops basketball blog.
[Kobe] Bryant, speaking after the Lakers' shootaround today at AAC, said he considers NBA owners to be "brilliant" for the way they have made it trendy for stars to take hometown discounts in their salary. He's also not buying it. Dallas Morning News
"It's the popular thing to do," Bryant said as he was surrounded by reporters. "Player takes less, blah, blah, blah. I think it's a big coup for the owners to put players in situations where public perception puts pressure on them to take less money because if you don't, then you get criticized for it. It's absolutely brilliant. "But I'm not going for it. And I know the new head of the players' association ain't going for it, either." Dallas Morning News
Kevin Martin, the Timberwolves’ leading scorer at 20.4 points per game, is out indefinitely with a broken wrist suffered in their recent victory over New York. Martin scored 37 points in that game, including 31 after his injury. He joins starting point guard Ricky Rubio, out with a sprained ankle, and starting center Nikola Pekovic, who is dealing with a variety of maladies. San Antonio Express-News Blog
The team said he broke his right wrist midway through Wednesday's first quarter. That's his shooting wrist, of course.
You might recall he went on to score a season-high 37 points that night. Surgery likely is the fastest way to get him back on the court, perhaps in four to six weeks. Minneapolis Star Tribune Blog
Although he hasn’t played in an NBA game in almost two years, Jason Richardson remains signed to the Sixers. Despite the widely-held belief that he may stay sidelined for the entire season, Richardson has other intentions. He was asked by reporters prior to the Sixers’ loss to the Celtics Wednesday at the Wells Fargo Center if he expected to play this season. Richardson's reply, as relayed by Calkins Media's Tom Moore: “No doubt in my mind.” Philly.com
Richardson will be an unrestricted free agent after this season, so he would use any time he received with the Sixers this season to show the rest of the teams across the league’s landscape that he still has some left in the tank. Philly.com
There is a chance Andrei Kirilenko has played his last game with the Brooklyn Nets. Although league sources indicated Kirilenko’s absence for personal reasons for Friday’s game against the Thunder and Saturday’s in San Antonio had nothing to do with his lack of playing time recently, the 33-year-old forward has clearly fallen out of Nets coach Lionel Hollins’ plans, and it appears the team could soon be ready to move on. NY Post
Sources said no buyout negotiations have taken place yet, but that it’s possible the team could try to trade Kirilenko and his $3.3 million expiring contract. If such a trade were to materialize, it would likely be after Dec. 15, when all rookies and players signed to contracts this summer are eligible to be moved. If a trade doesn’t materialize, it seems inevitable that a buyout would be reached at some point. NY Post
Kirilenko signed with the Nets in July 2013 with great fanfare, and deservedly so, after they landed him on a two-year deal worth $6.5 million, including a player option for the second season. Kirilenko had turned down a $10 million option with the Timberwolves to enter free agency. NY Post
Despite the pronounced public backing of his union, Charlotte Hornets forward Jeff Taylor will not file an appeal to the NBA for a 24-game suspension centered on a domestic abuse incident, league sources told Yahoo Sports on Friday. National Basketball Players Association executive director Michele Roberts ripped NBA commissioner Adam Silver’s punishment as “excessive and without precedent” in a statement on Thursday. The union was eager to challenge the NBA on the severity of the suspension based on the league’s Collective Bargaining Agreement. Yahoo Sports
Nevertheless, Taylor, 25, and his agent chose to accept the suspension and sit the remaining 13 games until he can return to the lineup. Taylor has already missed 11 games stemming from the incident, which occurred prior to the start of the Hornets’ training camp in late September. Yahoo Sports
Hulk Hogan showed up to the Cleveland Cavaliers game on Wednesday night to ask the NBA audience, “Whatchya gonna do, brother,” when WWE’s “TLC” pay-per-view event rolls into town next month? He and the WWE hope the answer is buy tickets. The event, which by the way, stands for “Tables, Ladders and Chairs,” is scheduled to happen on Dec. 14 in Cleveland’s Quicken Loans arena, aka “The Q,” where the Cavs play. Washington Post Blog
MAIN MORNING NBA RUMORS STORIES
Jason Kidd made his first return to Brooklyn since his ugly June exit from the Nets, when his reported power play to go over the head of general manager Billy King and get more say regarding personnel was foiled. Perhaps caught up in the uniqueness of the moment, Kidd on Wednesday night swerved off his usual non-controversial answers and criticized the team that gave him his first head coaching job only a few weeks after he retired from playing despite his lack of previous bench experience. NY Newsday
Kidd insisted he never tried to go over King's head, and said he didn't want more control. "No. No, I didn't try to promote myself," he said. "Billy's the GM. He put the Brooklyn Nets together, so it is what it is. I didn't try to promote myself. I'm still learning to be a coach. This is my second season. I had a very interesting first year as a coach. I thought it was kind of funny that you guys were marking down how many times I held the clipboard. You do that to [Lionel] Hollins?" NY Newsday
"Well, he was management, so my relationship with Billy was to figure out how to put things right when he was around," Kidd said. "There was really no relationship." NY Newsday
The Cavaliers will have to make a move. There are holes on the defensive end that need to be patched up and the players currently on the roster aren't equipped to handle the necessary repairs. With this underwhelming 5-5 start, it is essential for Cleveland to pick up a defensive boost. Cleveland's $5.3 million trade exception is the logical solution, but Brendan Haywood's unusual contract could be thrown into the mix. And make no mistake, it eventually will. Cleveland Plain Dealer
Haywood is being paid a salary of $2.2 million this season, but next year he has a non-guaranteed income of $10.5 million. It becomes fully guaranteed if he is not waived by the Aug. 1 deadline of 2015. The chances of a team making that type of commitment at this stage of his career are slim to none. Cleveland Plain Dealer
What's attractive about Haywood's deal is next summer his $10.5 million income would apply towards the league's salary-matching requirements, which would allow the Cavaliers, or whichever team has him at that time, to trade Haywood for an impact player making up to approximately $14 million annually. Cleveland Plain Dealer
J.R. Smith's head was down and he barely looked up as he spoke in a low voice, epitomizing the Knicks 13 games into the Derek Fisher era. The Knicks are down, feeling low, and things aren't looking up. At this point, they were expected to be showing progress. They're not. NY Newsday
After the games in Milwaukee and Minnesota, Smith provided the soundtracks for the Knicks' season thus far. He called it "really embarrassing" that at halftime, Fisher had to challenge the Knicks to play harder against the Bucks. About 24 hours later, Smith said, "It's not fun anymore." NY Newsday
One positive is that Jose Calderon and Andrea Bargnani are expected to practice Friday and could make their debuts Saturday night. Both should help offensively. Calderon will be able to get the Knicks into their offense better than Shane Larkin has. Calderon also is a good shooter who can make teams pay if he's left open. Bargnani's strength also is scoring. But neither is a good defensive player, and that is the part of the game that concerns the Knicks most. NY Newsday
For LaMarcus Aldridge, the meeting with Chicago is a chance to face the franchise that drafted him No. 2 overall in 2006 before trading him to Portland in exchange for Tyrus Thomas on draft night. Aldridge said he doesn't think about the Bulls trading him on draft day as much as he did early in his career. "I think early in my career I might have used it for motivation," he said. "But now I'm too old to be still holding that grudge." Oregonian
Along with Portland, Golden State and Toronto, Chicago is one of four teams that ranks in the top 10 in both offensive and defensive efficiency according to NBA.com. Stotts said the Blazers won't change their approach defensively against Chicago, but noted the Bulls have a variety of scoring threats. "Their offense is very efficient particularly when they're healthy when they have Derrick Rose and Pau Gasol. But they have post up threats, they have pick and roll threats, they're very patient at the offensive end," Stotts said. "They play together, they have three point shooters, they have wings who can post, so they have a lot of options offensively." Oregonian
The head of the National Basketball Players Association is calling Jeff Taylor’s 24-game suspension “excessive, without precedent and a violation of the Collective Bargaining Agreement.” Michele Roberts’ strongly-worded statement Thursday suggests the union is prepared to appeal the suspension on behalf of Taylor, the Charlotte Hornets small forward who has been on paid leave. Charlotte Observer
NBA commissioner Adam Silver announced Wednesday that Taylor would serve a 24-game suspension after he pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor domestic-violence charge in Michigan. Charlotte Observer
The Brooklyn Nets scored more than $250,000 from a physical- therapy practice by selling them a corporate sponsorship complete with advertising at games and player appearances. But they stiffed the practice by not providing any of the promised perks and even revoked the practice’s season tickets, a new lawsuit charges. “Borough Park Physical Therapy signed an agreement with the Nets to be one of their sponsors and the Nets strung them along, got about $250,000 from them, and then once they had the money they failed to provide the print advertising and player appearances,” said plaintiff’s attorney Asher Gulko. NY Post
[Dwight] Howard was limping after the Rockets loss in Memphis on Monday. He joked that night that he would soon need a cane and downplayed the injury, calling it the usual “post-game pain.” The Rockets did not list him at all in the subsequent injury reports. By Thursday, there was no such secrecy, with the Rockets speaking more about playing without Howard than hoping he could quickly bounce back. “We’re in a situation,” McHale said, “no Dwight probably.” Houston Chronicle
Rookie K.J. McDaniels played just 11 minutes for the 76ers on Wednesday night, scoring eight points. His role has diminished over the last four games since he played 28 minutes last week against Toronto. It is frustrating and hard to deal with, he said. "But I'm just coming in here and trying to work hard every day," McDaniels said. "I'm trying to leave it to Coach and stay humble about it." His mother chose to be a bit more open. Shawn Chapman McDaniels posted on Twitter Wednesday during the loss to the Celtics that the Sixers were tanking the season and messing with her son. Philadelphia Inquirer
In October, she tweeted that the Sixers were a "screwed up program." McDaniels said Thursday that he did not see his mother's social media activity. The Twitter account @KJsMOMshawn was deleted sometime after the team's afternoon practice. Philadelphia Inquirer
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