Report: Kevin Durant reaches huge deal to stay with Nike

Darren Rovell and ESPN.com is reporting that Nike believes they will be able to keep Kevin Durant in tow after Nike has countered Under Armour’s offer. Looks like they will keep Kevin Durant. Story coming from @ESPNSteinLine and I. — darren rovell (@darrenrovell) August 31, 2014 According to the report, Nike officials told Durant and his team at Jay Z’s Roc Nation Sports that it would do what was needed to come close to the $325 million offered by Under Armour. While the exact Nike offer for Durant isn’t known, sources told ESPN that Durant should make more — in base and royalties — than the Thunder will pay him over the next two seasons ($41.2 million). That’s why fans in Oklahoma City were nervous about a possible move to Under Armour, which could have steered him more to returning to his local roots to play for the Washington Wizards when he becomes a free agent after the 2015-16 season. Analyst Omar Saad, senior managing director of ISI’s luxury, apparel and footwear team, who …

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Sterling says Clippers deal started with 2 numbers (Yahoo Sports)

LOS ANGELES, CA - APRIL 1: Los Angeles Clippers owner, Donald Sterling and Rochelle Sterling, attend a game against the Indiana Pacers at Staples Center on April 1, 2013 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Andrew D. Bernstein/NBAE via Getty Images)

When asked how much money she wanted to sell the Los Angeles Clippers, the wife of disgraced team owner Donald Sterling handed a piece of paper to her lawyer with two numbers: $1.5 to $2. In an exclusive interview Thursday with The Associated Press, she offered details about negotiating one of the richest deals in sports after her husband’s racist rant to a girlfriend prompted the NBA to ban him for life and force him to give up the team. ”I just did what I had to do.” For a half-century, Shelly Sterling had worked in her husband’s shadow, renovating and decorating their real-estate properties while he built a business empire. ”He said I want to come see you immediately.” She put him off until the next day and quickly called a girlfriend to find out who he was.


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Hawks’ Scott earns new deal with scoring surge (Yahoo Sports)

The Atlanta Hawks have re-signed Mike Scott, who improved his 3-point shot in his second season and almost doubled his scoring average. Scott, a second-round pick from Virginia in 2012, averaged 9.6 points last season, up from 4.6 as a rookie. Scott made 62 of 200 3-point attempts last season after missing his only 3 as a rookie.

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Three-team Kevin Love deal finally is official

Kevin Love to Cleveland, Andrew Wiggins, Anthony Bennett and Thaddeus Young to Minnesota.

      
 

 

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Is Kevin Durant’s shoe deal offer a game changer?

This is a great deal for Durant, but what about Under Armour?

      
 

 

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3-team Love deal finally is official

Kevin Love to Cleveland, Andrew Wiggins, Anthony Bennett and Thaddeus Young to Minnesota.

      
 

 

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NBA Trade Rumors: Latest on Kevin Love Deal, Eric Bledsoe and More

In a part of the year that is ordinarily very quiet, NBA teams could complete some major moves on the trade market.

Instead of looking for minor additions to sit at the end of the bench, the next few weeks might see All-Stars, key contributors and top prospects all being moved around the league.

Considering one impact player can be the difference on a championship team, these deals remain something to keep an eye on as front offices wheel and deal.

 

Eric Bledsoe Finally Getting Traded?

One of the big stories throughout the offseason has been the handling of restricted free agents Eric Bledsoe and Greg Monroe. The Phoenix Suns and Detroit Pistons, respectively, have failed to come to an agreement with their players and now seem unlikely to complete an extension.

While Monroe appears likely to sign a one-year qualifying offer, Bledsoe could be traded before the start of the season. Jude LaCava of Fox 10 explained in an interview on Fox Sports 910 (transcribed by Matt Moore of CBS Sports):

You can take this to the bank, so to speak. The Suns are now discussing trade possibilities for Eric Bledsoe. The reality has kicked into the point that my sources are telling me that if they can accommodate Bledsoe and get something that they want in return, trade possibilities are very real and they have been discussed.

Bledsoe had a breakout year with the Suns, averaging 17.7 points, 5.5 assists and 4.7 rebounds per game last season. However, he and his agent rejected a four-year, $48 million contract extension to remain with the Suns, according to ESPN’s Chris Broussard. The guard is reportedly looking for a max deal of $80 million over five years.

With the two sides unlikely to come to an agreement, it seems like a trade would be the best-case scenario to avoid letting him go for nothing. 

On the other hand, an anonymous NBA general manager explained to why he would not trade for either Bledsoe or Monroe:

I think any one of us would be wary of getting involved in a trade for either player. Their teams overvalue them in terms of making trades, they don’t want to give them away for nothing. There’s no reason to give up significant assets for players who probably will be available next summer. That doesn’t mean a deal can’t get done, but it is complicated.

If a team does make a deal, they will have to be somewhat confident they can get Bledsoe to sign an extension. Still, the Suns’ willingness to part with their point guard means a trade is at least possible.

 

76ers Eyeing Amar‘e Stoudemire

The Philadelphia 76ers are taking a long road toward rebuilding. They have selected high-upside players in the draft and are hoping they can make an impact within a few years. However, they do not have legitimate hopes of contending in the 2014-15 season.

This has kept Philadelphia from making moves that will add significant cost to the team salary. The problem with this is that NBA teams must hit a minimum floor to avoid facing a penalty.

General manager Sam Hinkie explained earlier in the offseason that he wants to keep his options open, via John Gonzalez of CSNPhilly.com:

I think we’ll be open-minded. I don’t know, exactly, what we’ll do there. I think we’ll look for opportunities. And we’ll go from there. Our cap space last year was used in several ways. One is to pick up some of the seconds that we used [on draft night] and other future seconds. Some is to pick up international players like Furkan Aldemir, who we traded for last year. Those are all sort of possibilities.

Among those possibilities is bringing in someone during the season who would get the team close to the salary floor. Steve Kyler of Basketball Insiders breaks down a potential in-season trade to acquire Amar‘e Stoudemire:

What’s far more likely is that the long rumored Amar’e Stoudemire to Philadelphia deal gets done at the deadline. The Sixers take on Stoudemire’s $23 million salary cap number, which pushes them way over the minimum. They would only owe him roughly 30 percent of his remaining contract, so they’d end up paying him $7 million in cash and likely extract a draft pick or a rookie scale player for their troubles.

Philadelphia will be able to add assets in a trade just for taking on the salary, which the organization will easily be able to do based on the extended room in the cap.

The team does not have to act immediately, but this is something to keep in mind in the coming weeks and months.

 

Cavaliers, Timberwolves and 76ers on Brink of Blockbuster Deal

The deal that will send Kevin Love to the Cleveland Cavaliers is nearing completion with three teams now involved, as ESPN’s Marc Stein reports:

Sportscenter provides a look at what each team gets in the deal:

This trade can be confirmed on August 23 as soon as Andrew Wiggins is eligible to be traded after signing his rookie contract.

The immediate winner in this deal is obviously the Cavaliers, who add an All-Star to a roster that already includes LeBron James, Kyrie Irving and a number of talented pieces. While a championship is far from guaranteed, they are certainly the favorites to go all the way this season.

On the other hand, Minnesota did as well as you can expect for a team losing one of the best players in the league, as noted by ESPN’s Jeff Goodman:

Brian Geltzeiler of Sirius XM NBA Radio believes things could get even better for the Timberwolves:

Andrew Wiggins has great upside and could become a star in the league. If he reaches his potential, Minnesota will have ended up with a steal.

As for the 76ers, they were able to add some more salary (remember, that is a good thing) while getting a pair of high-upside players. This will be a win for everyone involved as soon as it is confirmed.

 

Follow Rob Goldberg on Twitter for the latest breaking news and analysis.

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Kevin Durant Reportedly Offered Monster Deal from Under Armour

Under Armour is reportedly seeking to outbid Nike in the race to secure Oklahoma City Thunder superstar Kevin Durant to a massive endorsement deal.   

According to ESPN.com’s Darren Rovell, Durant’s agency, Roc Nation Sports, told Nike of Under Armour’s offer:

Kevin Durant’s representation, Roc Nation Sports, informed Nike on Wednesday that he has a deal on the table with Under Armour worth between $265 million and $285 million over 10 years, sources told ESPN.com. 

The deal includes Under Armour stock and other incentives such a community center built in his mother’s name whose exact worth will not be known for some time. [...]

Nike’s last offer, sources said, would have given Durant a base and a minimum royalty guarantee that would equal no less than $20 million a year.

Rovell provided more perspective and background details on Twitter, and also compared Durant’s situation with that of Cleveland Cavaliers star LeBron James:

The following quote from Durant, per SLAM Magazine, outlines a primary reason why he would be so coveted and deserving of such an opportunity to make big bucks away from the basketball court:

Durant has won the scoring title four times already in just seven NBA seasons, and took home his maiden NBA MVP award in 2013-14 after averaging a career-best 32 points and 5.5 assists to go with 7.4 rebounds per contest.

Along with fellow young All-Star Russell Westbrook, Durant has helped Oklahoma City make a rather seamless transition from Seattle, turning the franchise into a perennial contender. Triangle Offense made a pertinent comparison in that context to the endorsement offer Durant reportedly has:

All that’s missing for Durant is a championship, which could come with the Thunder or elsewhere. With just two years left on his contract, there’s a chance Durant takes his talents elsewhere for the best shot at a Larry O’Brien Trophy.

No matter what he decides on for the next phase of his career, though, his impending endorsement deal will lock Durant in as he approaches his prime. Just 25 years old at this time, Durant’s best days are likely ahead of him as a player. Now he is taking his endorsement ceiling to new heights.

Fortune magazine combines with Sports Illustrated to compile an annual list of the highest-earning professional athletes, and Durant was 13th in this year’s edition.

But with nearly $19 million in salary coming this season, per Spotrac.com, and the bidding battle between Nike and Under Armour, Durant stands to improve his stature among the highest earners in sports.

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Philadelphia 76ers: Deal for Amar’e Stoudemire Might Come at Trade Deadline

Amar’e Stoudemire has one year left on the max deal he signed with the New York Knicks in 2010, and is set to make $23-million.
A handful of injuries have hindered his on court performance, but he’s still garnering some attention from other teams around the league. The Philadelphia 76ers have interest in acquiring the former All Star power forward, even if the deal has to wait until the trade deadline.
From Steve Kyler of Basketball Insiders:
What’s far more likely is that the long rumored Amar’e Stoudemire to Philadelphia deal gets done at the deadline. The Sixers take on Stoudemire’s $23 million salary cap number, which pushes them way over the minimum. They would only owe him roughly 30 percent of his remaining contract, so they’d end up paying him $7 million in cash and likely extract a draft pick or a rookie scale player for their troubles.
Flexibility in the NBA is currency – both figuratively and literally. The 76ers will likely meet the floor; they just are not incentivized …

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Grizzlies sign draft pick Jarnell Stokes to deal (Yahoo Sports)

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) — The Memphis Grizzlies have signed their second-round draft pick Jarnell Stokes to a multi-year contract.

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