NBA Rumors: Playing Fact or Fiction with the Hottest League Chatter
Though the months of August and September are usually reserved for the kickoff of football season, the rumor mill of the 2012 NBA offseason seemingly won't go away.
Just when you think that every major move has taken place and we'll reach the period of dormancy, another rumor pops up and sends the basketball world into a tizzy. And with many teams still having questions to answer in the two months before the regular season begins, that doesn't seem likely to die down anytime soon.
With a ton of rumors in place, let's take a look at what rumors you should be paying attention to and dismiss the ones that are simply not happening.
It's time for NBA rumors fact or fiction.
Dirk to Play 2 More Years, Then Retire?
Matthew Emmons-US PRESSWIRE
Dallas Mavericks star Dirk Nowitzki took did an impromptu question-and-answer section with fans earlier this week on his Twitter feed.
While the session was mostly your standard affair of asinine questions and dull answers, Nowitzki seemingly decided to give a follower the inside scoop on his future playing plans.
Forgive me if I'm a little skeptical here. The real reason Nowitzki gave a "two years and see what happens window" is the fact that his current deal with the Mavs expires after the 2013-14 season. And even though a negotiating ploy won't be necessary for Dirk to get a Kevin Garnett-like contract from Dallas owner Mark Cuban, it's still smart to plant the early retirement seed to get a couple extra million.
Even at 36, Nowitzki would still be a strong enough player to last two or three more seasons, barring injury.
Don't give the star German's words another thought. They're simply coming from a man enjoying his offseason and likely musing about a possible life after basketball.
Chris Andersen to the Heat?
Kelley L Cox-US PRESSWIRE
Amnestied earlier this offseason by the Denver Nuggets, Andersen seemingly has just one team atop his wish list in free agency: the defending champion Miami Heat.
Via the South Florida Sun-Sentinel:
The Heat also have attracted the interest of free-agent center Chris Andersen, who recently bypassed a lucrative European offer and is believed to be amenable to a Heat offer at the NBA minimum salary, which is all the Heat, operating above the NBA salary cap, have available. Andersen was released earlier this summer by the Denver Nuggets under the league's amnesty provision that eases a team's luxury-tax liability.
With just Joel Anthony and Dexter Pittman on roster at center, Miami is in desperate need for a talented big man. Andersen definitely isn't a player who comes without baggage, but he's far and away the best big man on the market.
He could usurp just about all of Anthony's minutes and lessen the toll on Chris Bosh, who will likely walk into next season playing out of position at center.
There's just one problem: The Heat haven't shown even the slightest of interest in the 34-year-old big man (via the Miami Herald's Barry Jackson).
Until Miami returns the affection, this is a one-sided love affair with Andersen at this point.
Josh Howard to Get Another Chance in the League?
Russ Isabella-US PRESSWIRE
Oft-injured and ineffective for nearly half of a decade now, the former All-Star should feel blessed if he even gets a camp invite for the 2012-13 season.
Nevertheless, it seems that Howard showed enough last season in Utah to at least pique some teams' interest. Currently the team that seems most interested is the Charlotte Bobcats, who worked out the 32-year-old forward this week.
Via Rick Bonnell of the Charlotte Observer:
The Bobcats’ interest in Howard at this point is still exploratory, as they consider ways to fill out their roster. The Bobcats would like to have another power forward, and have previously considered Antawn Jamison, Kris Humphries and Carl Landry, who all signed elsewhere. Howard, 6-7, has played both power and small forward.
Charlotte has the least-talented roster in the league, so it's smart for the team to at least do a cursory check-in with Howard. With this being likely his last chance to impress at the NBA level, the team should get all he has left in the tank.
Regardless, if the Bobcats decide to pass, there seems to be enough suitors (via Yahoo! Sports' Marc J. Spears) to get Howard a one-year deal.
Andray Blatche to Minnesota?
Rob Carr/Getty Images
A man simply looking to get back on the court (h/t Syracuse.com), Blatche worked out in Houston earlier this week in hopes of getting an NBA offer.
At just 26 years old and with a cavalcade of untapped talent, Blatche is a perfect fit for any franchise looking to take a chance, so long as the locker room is filled with high-character guys.
And while many will point to the Miami Heat as an ideal locale for Blatche, it seems that the Minnesota Timberwolves have the most interest so far.
According to ESPN 1500 Twin Cities, the Timberwolves had scouts in attendance for the former Washington Wizard's workout. Minnesota general manager David Kahn is known to have been on the market for a big man earlier this offseason (via Fox Sports' Sam Amico), and could come away with a steal if Blatche impressed enough.
Kings to Virginia Beach?
Photo Credit: RedBubble.Net
With the relationship between the Maloofs and the city of Sacramento at the point of no return, a report from Hampton Roads Business Journal reporters Philip Newswanger and Bill Cresenzo brought a relatively shocking city into the relocation mix: Virginia Beach.
Via Hampton Roads Business Journal:
Media giant Comcast will guarantee a 25-year lease on a new arena, supposedly for naming rights and for broadcasting the games, sources said. Comcast owns NBC and Global Spectrum, which operates arenas and stadiums across the country, including the Ted Constant Convocation Center at Old Dominion University.
When you throw names around like Comcast, rumors that would normally be dismissed actually spark some interest.
Unfortunately, there will be no revival of the Virginia Squires coming anytime soon, according to NBA.com's Scott Howard-Cooper. For now, those ABA fanatics will have to settle for creating the Squires on NBA 2K13 if they want a team in Virginia Beach.