The doldrums of the NBA offseason are almost in the rear-view, as training camp is set to open on Saturday for team’s participating in international exhibition games. Those organizations that are remaining stateside for the preseason have to wait until Tuesday, Oct. 1 to begin practicing in earnest.
This is a great time to catch up on which players will be in your favorite team’s camp, as there are a ton of quality talents attempting to compete for an extremely limited number of roster spots.
Let’s take a look at what the latest buzz is regarding potential camp invites and other buzz concerning the preseason in Friday’s rumor roundup.
Nets Giving Forbes a Shot
The Brooklyn Nets are looking like surefire contenders to the Miami Heat’s reign of dominance in the Eastern Conference but still have to host a training camp this fall.
With 15 contracts already guaranteed, it’s an extreme long shot that they add more players to the payroll, but there’s always a slim chance someone stands out over the next few weeks and inks a deal with the organization.
According to Stefan Bondy of the New York Daily News, one of those who will be trying to impress is shooting guard Gary Forbes, a Brooklyn native who has bounced around the NBA, D-League and overseas since leaving UMass in 2008.
Hear Brooklyn product Gary Forbes (Benjamin Banneker Academy) - who played for Nuggets and Raptors -- is a Nets training camp invite.— Stefan Bondy (@NYDNInterNets) September 27, 2013
Forbes' last meaningful NBA stop was the Toronto Raptors during the 2011-12 season, when he put up a career best 6.6 points, 2.1 rebounds and 1.1 assists coming off the bench for 48 games.
He’s a solid long-distance shooter that knocked down 34.9 percent of his tries from beyond the arc that season, plus he has good size for the swingman position at 6’7”, 220 pounds.
Unfortunately, it’s hard to envision a scenario in which the Nets would utilize him at this juncture. Perhaps the team wants to evaluate him as a possible replacement in the case of injury during the season.
Whatever it is, Forbes will need to do his best and bring his “A” game every day in order to garner any sort of consideration from the Brooklyn brass.
Wolves Add Price to Camp
The Minnesota Timberwolves are looking for some depth at the guard position, which is why it comes as no surprise that Jerry Zgoda of the Minneapolis Star Tribune is reporting the team has added point guard A.J. Price to the camp roster.
Price is joining recent additions Robbie Hummel, Lorenzo Brown and Othyus Jeffers as one of the 18 members of the T-Wolves upcoming training camp.
Should the Wolves sign Price?
You may remember the 26-year-old point guard from his solid contributions to the Washington Wizards last season. The UConn product averaged 7.7 points, 3.6 assists and 2.0 rebounds in limited minutes during his fourth NBA season.
He proved to be a fine backup and replacement starter for John Wall during his time in the nation’s capital and should be given an honest shot of making the team this month.
With the amount of injuries the T-Wolves have dealt with over the past few seasons, it would almost be irresponsible for the team to not cover its bases and ink a quality reserve like Price to a minimum contract, as long as he proves himself at camp.
As of Friday, Minnesota has 14 guaranteed contracts and could very well select the top performer from the exhibition season to make the final cut.
Jazz Extend Three More Invites
The Utah Jazz are making a number of moves in preparation for the start of camp and have recently brought in point guard Mike Harris, forward Dominic McGuire and point guard Scott Machado to compete for the last few remaining spots on the roster, according to The Associated Press via FOX Sports.
It is expected that the Jazz bring even more players in prior to Monday’s media day, although it will certainly make it harder for the team brass to cut down to a league-mandated 15-man roster by the end of the month.
McGuire is a solid veteran who has seen plenty of action in his six-year NBA career. He’s played for seven different teams in that span and holds averages of 2.7 points, 1.2 assists and 3.4 rebounds per game.
Harris has seen limited playing time during his three-year stint in the pros, participating in just 34 games and averaging 2.9 points and 2.4 rebounds, mostly as a member of the Houston Rockets.
Machado is the most intriguing addition, as the former Iona star is coming off a mediocre rookie campaign with the Rockets. He averaged just 1.3 points and 1.0 assists over six games. He was buried on the bench and did not display enough talent to see more time.
The Jazz should have one of the most intense training camps to watch, with so many young, exciting prospects all vying for a small number of guaranteed contracts.