NBA free agency rumors roundup: Mike Miller picks Grizzlies, Derek Fisher to finish career with Thunder
Mike Miller has agreed to a deal with the Memphis Grizzlies, returning to the place where he had the most productive years of his NBA career. Miller played in Memphis from 2003-2008, and he had the best season of his career in 2006-07, when he averaged 18.5 points, 5.4 rebounds and 4.3 assists.
Miller has been plagued by injuries in recent years, but he showed the ability to hit big shots in the postseason for the Miami Heat and could be a nice weapon off the bench for Memphis. As SB Nation's Grizzlies blog Grizzly Bear Blues notes, the Grizzlies really needed some three-point shooting on their roster:
This will be Miller's second stint with the team. He isn't the player he was in 2007 [traded to Minnesota alongside Kevin Love for O.J. Mayo a.k.a. =( ], but this version of the Grizzlies desperately needs three-point shooting, so Miller will fit in perfectly. During his time with the Miami Heat, Miller shot 41 percent from behind the arc and 40 percent on spot-up threes (mySynergySports.com). He'll fit in perfectly.
Fisher to return to Thunder for final NBA season
Veteran guard Derek Fisher has agreed to re-sign with the Thunder on a one-year deal at the minimum. This will be the first time in three seasons that Fisher will actually start the season with Oklahoma City, despite the fact that he has finished the year with the Thunder each of the past two campaigns.
Fisher joined the Thunder in the middle of last season after requesting a release from the Dallas Mavericks in order to spend more time with his family. The 39-year-old struggled mightily in the regular season, but he did play well in the playoffs, shooting 47.1 percent from three-point range.
Fisher revealed Wednesday evening that the upcoming season will be his swan song, posting an announcement on Instagram saying that he will retire after the year.
K-Mart back to the Knicks
After taking some time to make a decision, Kenyon Martin has decided to return to the New York Knicks on a one-year deal at the minimum. Bringing back Martin will help bolster a Knicks frontline that needed some depth.
New York signed Martin to two 10-day contracts last season when much of their frontcourt went down with injuries. The 35-year-old big man proved he still had something left in the tank, averaging 7.2 points and 5.3 rebounds in 18 regular season games.
SB Nation's Knicks blog Posting and Toasting is certainly happy with the news:
Martin played some superb ball last season as a back-up big and occasional starter when Tyson Chandler was broken. That was in just 18 regular season games after signing mid-season, though. It'll take some doing to to keep the 35 year-old Martin on his feet for a full year. All that said, Martin was terrific last season and I'm totally in favor of bringing him back. He offers sturdy defense, solid finishing, a lot of snarling, and even the occasional rebound on a front line wanting for all the above. Welcome back, Kenyon.
Clark heads to Utah
Ian Clark made a ton of noise during Summer League, highlighted by a 33-point performance in the championship game of the Las Vegas tournament for the Golden State Warriors. Clark has parlayed his strong summer into a two-year contract with the Utah Jazz.
Clark was an excellent player in college at Belmont, but he went undrafted before joining the Miami Heat Summer League team in Orlando. After a strong performance there, he followed that up by playing even better in Las Vegas.
Grizzlies claim Akognon off waivers
Not only did the Grizzlies add Mike Miller, but they also picked up Summer League standout Josh Akognon off waivers. Akognon was recently waived by the Dallas Mavericks in order to sign Monta Ellis. Akognon led the Mavs' Las Vegas Summer League team in scoring with 17.5 points per game.
Akognon's deal will be non-guaranteed, so the guard may not even be on the roster once the season starts. But Grizzly Bear Blues is hoping that at the very least, this move will light a fire under backup point guard Tony Wroten.
LeBron likely done with Team USA, KD and K-Love in for 2014
It was already expected that LeBron James wouldn't play in next summer's FIBA Basketball World Cup in Spain, but now it appears that James may be done with international competition for good. The NBA's two-time reigning MVP is "doubtful" to play in the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Summer Olympics, and it seems unlikely James would suit up for Team USA anytime after that.
Meanwhile, Kevin Durant and Kevin Love announced that they plan on playing for Team USA in Spain next summer. Both Durant and Love played for Team USA in the 2012 London Summer Olympics, and they also both played in the 2010 FIBA Basketball World Championships in Turkey. Durant was the team's leading scorer in both tournaments.
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