The NBA rumor mill has slowed production since the heady days of late June and early July when the likes of LeBron James and Carmelo Anthony were busy making their NBA landscape-altering decisions.
The major power shifts have already taken place, and after the summer league performances and rookie signings, it's increasingly clear that the majority of NBA teams have somewhat finalized their rosters. However, the door is still open for a few players looking to latch onto a team's final roster spots.
Our roundup of rumors has the latest rumblings regarding a couple of young players looking to make good on the NBA dream and a veteran baller with a proven track record of success.
Shawn Marion Generating Interest from the Cavaliers
The Cleveland Cavaliers have LeBron James, Kyrie Irving and a host of reports linking them to Kevin Love. It's clear that, trade or no trade, shoring up the perimeter defense is of the utmost priority.
According to ESPN's Marc Stein, the Cavaliers are looking to do just that by potentially signing veteran forward Shawn Marion:
ESPN sources say Shawn Marion is in Cleveland today on recruiting visit with Cavaliers— Marc Stein (@ESPNSteinLine) August 4, 2014
Marion would be a strong short-term solution for the Cavaliers. He is unlikely to sign a long-term deal, which keeps the team's cap space clear, and is a solid defender both on and off the ball despite his advanced age.
Stein also writes on ESPN.com about Marion's ties to the Cavaliers organization:
Cavaliers general manager David Griffin has a strong relationship with Marion from their Phoenix days together and Cleveland, sources said, would love to bring Marion in to add depth, experience and versatility to a core that is expected to also feature Kevin Love if the Cavs complete their long-anticipated traded with Minnesota for the All-Star power forward later this month.
Marion would be especially useful if the Cavs were to trade away Andrew Wiggins, whose own defensive skills are held in high regard. The man they call "The Matrix" is still capable of playing plenty of minutes night in and night out, even after 15 seasons in the NBA. Stein also gave his input on another team that could use Marion's services:
Shawn Marion is a natural target for Indy in the wake of Paul George's injury but LeBron's presence, I'm told, indeed gives Cavs upper hand— Marc Stein (@ESPNSteinLine) August 4, 2014
Last year, he averaged 1.2 steals and 6.5 rebounds in 31.7 minutes per game playing for the Dallas Mavericks. His scoring average dipped to 10.4 points per game, the lowest since his rookie season.
However, Marion has shown a renewed ability to hit three-pointers despite his unorthodox shooting form, finding the bottom of the net on 35.8 percent of his attempts from downtown last season.
The Cavaliers likely wouldn't need him to play over 30 minutes per game every night, which could bode well for his overall productivity. The four-time All-Star also brings championship experience to the table, a prized commodity in title-starved Cleveland.
Roscoe Smith Reportedly Set to Join Lakers Camp
The Los Angeles Lakers have a bit of a haphazard roster, with a wealth of forward/center types and two aging stars in Kobe Bryant and Steve Nash headlining the backcourt.
For a team that should be looking to rebuild over the next couple of seasons and prepare for a post-Kobe existence, looking for youth and creating competition at every position should be a high priority.
According to SNY.tv and NBA.com contributor Adam Zagoria, the Los Angeles Lakers are reportedly bringing in undrafted forward Roscoe Smith to camp this summer:
Former UNLV/UConn F Roscoe Smith has accepted an invite to Lakers' camp, source tells @SNYtv— Adam Zagoria (@AdamZagoria) August 4, 2014
Smith is a 23-year-old small forward who averaged 11.1 points and 10.9 rebounds per game in 2013-14 with UNLV. He's a tireless worker and an excellent rebounder, especially on the defensive glass. He brought down 25.7 percent of the available defensive rebounds when he was on the floor with UNLV, per Sports-Reference.com.
It could still be quite tough for him to make the roster, as the Lakers have plenty of players capable of playing the small forward role, including Xavier Henry, Wesley Johnson and Nick Young.
However, Smith's tenacious playing style would fit in very well with Byron Scott's defensive-oriented approach. The coach was unequivocal in his remarks regarding his commitment to defense.
"He told me he was working out with Wesley [Johnson] and Nick [Young]," Scott said after receiving a congratulatory message from Bryant, per ESPN.com's Ramona Shelburne. "I told them that sounded great, but they 'better be ready to play some defense.'
Smith is no stranger to hard work on this end of the court.
Toure' Murry Generating Interest
Toure' Murry barely registered as a blip on many NBA fans' radars last season. The 24-year-old combo guard averaged just 2.7 points and 1.0 assists in 7.3 minutes per game last season for the New York Knicks.
Despite the minimal impact, Murry is generating interest from quite a few teams around the NBA, per ESPNNewYork.com's Ian Begley:
"The Knicks also may still re-sign Toure' Murry. The free agent guard has drawn interest from the Heat, Jazz and Clippers, according to a league source."
Murry's 6'5" height makes him an attractive player at the point guard position; he also has 2-guard potential and a decent outside shot, hitting 36.1 percent of his three pointers in the 2012-13 D-League season, per Basketball-Reference.com.
The Los Angeles Clippers could still use added depth behind Jordan Farmar and Chris Paul at point guard; Murry also brings an interesting combination of length and athleticism to the floor general spot that the Clippers currently lack.
Which team is the best fit for Murry?
Signing with the Jazz would make minutes tough to come by for Murry, as the team already has a young triumvirate of Trey Burke, Alec Burks and Dante Exum in the backcourt.
His best course of action could be to re-sign with the Knicks, who are likely to feature an aging point guard (Jose Calderon), and the opportunity to learn the triangle offense can be quite beneficial to a young player looking to find a suitable role in the NBA. Another year of seasoning in the D-League could make Murry a viable contributor for an NBA team in the near future.