NBA news roundup: Heat showing interest in Michael Beasley, Thunder waive DeAndre Liggins
The Miami Heat are contemplating the idea of bringing back troubled forward Michael Beasley this offseason, Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports reports. No offer has been made and no deal is considered imminent, but Miami could one of the few reasonable landing sports for the former rising star:
Several of the Heat's key veteran players are supportive of the signing of Beasley, and he has a strong interest in returning to the franchise responsible for taking him with the second overall pick in the 2008 NBA draft, sources told Yahoo.
If players like LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh are behind Beasley, it could be a drastically different environment than ones he's experienced in the past. During stints in Minnesota and Phoenix, major responsibility was often placed on Beasley, but that obviously wouldn't the case in Miami.
The Oklahoma City Thunder waived guard DeAndre Liggins on Friday. The 25-year-old was arrested Sept. 1 after being accused of domestic violence by a woman who claims to be his girlfriend. As Welcome to Loud City writes, the team used a brief press release to unceremoniously part ways with the former second-round pick.
Liggins had a non-guaranteed contract for the 2013-14 season, so the Thunder won't be on the hook for his $884,000 salary now. At the time of the arrest, GM Sam Presti said the team would wait for the facts of the situation before acting.
With a low-cost contract and little value to the team, Liggins' role on the team was always disposable. With this kind of situation, it's not surprising the team opted to simply move on.
The career of former All-Star forward Caron Butler may be winding down, but joining the Milwaukee Bucks gives the 33-year-old reason to be excited entering his 12th season. A native of nearby Racine, Wisc., Butler's introductory press conference Friday was all about coming home. Andrew Gruman of FOX Sports Wisconsin has the quotes:
"Now to be in that conference and to be out there on that floor wearing a Bucks uniform, having Racine and Milwaukee stand up loud and proud and represent, that's going to be extremely special. I'm going to put on for my city."
Traded to Milwaukee by the Phoenix Suns in a cost-cutting deal, Butler finally gets a chance to play in Milwaukee after spending time in Miami, Washington, Dallas and, most recently, Los Angeles. Last season, he averaged 10.4 points per game as the starting forward for the Clippers, who traded him to Phoenix earlier this offseason.
Coming off an encouraging performance at Summer League, Washington Wizards forward Jan Vesely continues his strong summer at Eurobasket 2013. Starring for the Czech Republic, the former No. 6 overall pick is showing his improved effort in Vegas was no fluke.
While Vesely couldn't make a dent in Spain's beatdown of the Czechs on Saturday, as Bullets Forever writes, he continued to hold his own. Facing reigning NBA Defensive Player of the Year center Marc Gasol, he finished Saturday's game with seven points and 14 rebounds.
The overall per-game numbers for Vesely in the tournament look pretty good: 15.7 points, 11.7 rebounds and 2.3 steals. He's also committed just five turnovers in three contests. We still don't know if any of this will translate to the NBA game, but Vesely continues to offer some degree of hope.
The Charlotte Bobcats added some frontcourt depth this week by signing undrafted rookie James Southerland. A sweet-shooting forward out of Syracuse, Southerland could potentially make the team as a floor-spacer who can spell the key guys at both forward positions.
While the Bobcats are hoping to build their frontcourt around the likes of Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Cody Zeller, and, in the short term, Al Jefferson, Southerland could be a decent fit. His ability to spot up and hit jumpers could fit next to Jefferson's post-up game, though Southerland needs to show he can play NBA-caliber defense.
There's little doubt Southerland's size and shooting ability make him intriguing, but his background playing zone defense for the Orange demand questions on that end. He's still learning the basics of defense as played in the NBA, so we'll see if he can get past that and make Charlotte's roster.
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