NBA Notebook: Warriors lock up Steph Curry
The NBA Summer League is in full swing with the Association’s newest stars making their debut and many of its veterans making courtside appearances to cheer them on. Off the court, other games are being played as the free agency season continues.
Let’s take a look at the top stories from around the league in this week's edition of our NBA Notebook.
Cade Cunningham shines in Sin City
The first overall pick in this year’s draft has looked impressive in his initial games for the Detroit Pistons. At 6’7”, Cade Cunningham is an excellent ball-hander and shooter who has the size to hold his position when attacking the rim. He really is the prototypical NBA playmaker with a skill set similar to Kawhi Leonard, Jayson Tatum, Luka Doncic, and Devin Booker.
Cunningham has averaged 16.0 points per game so far in Summer League and managed to look better and more comfortable in his second appearance. While the Pistons are 0-2, it's nice to see the first overall pick take to the court and begin to work his way into what is sure to be a key role for the rebuilding Pistons.
Russell Westbrook returns home
There are now just three players on the Lakers’ roster under the age of 25 as L.A. has made a run on veteran free agents this offseason. The team's biggest acquisition, without a doubt, has been former UCLA Bruins guard Russell Westbrook, who will return home to chase a ring.
The Lakers relied on Dennis Schroder to run the offense last year, but he averaged just 5.8 assists per game and managed a pedestrian 2.2 assist-to-turnover ratio. As a member of the Washington Wizards last year, Westbrook averaged 11.7 assists per game and recorded 38 triple-doubles. Westbrook is a clear upgrade at the position and has the Lakers poised to be a must-see team every night of the upcoming season.
Schroder's gamble doesn't pay off
Speaking of Schroder, he has now traveled across the country to find a new home with the Boston Celtics on a one-year, $5.9 million deal. As the last, best unrestricted free agent, Schroder’s contract will mark the relative end of the sprint of signings and transition us to the restricted free agent and trade speculation period of the NBA offseason.
Schroder turned down an $84 million extension offer mid-season from the Lakers in hopes of landing a bigger offer this summer, but his disappointing performance late in the season and in the first round of the playoffs quashed that dream. By signing a one-year deal with the Celtics, Schroder will once again get an opportunity to prove himself worthy of a larger contract, and at 28 has enough time to still earn the big deal he covets. For the Celtics, he slots in as their new starting point guard thanks to the departure of Kemba Walker.
Warriors extend Steph Curry
I don’t believe there was ever any doubt that Steph Curry would stay with the Warriors, but he further solidified his relationship with Golden State by signing a four-year extension worth $215 million.
Curry is the most prolific shooter in NBA history, a respected professional, and good for the community. Golden State is his home, and NBA fans, especially those of the Warriors, are fortunate to enjoy the continuity that this extension represents.
The Milwaukee Bucks won their first NBA championship in 50 years and look poised to be legitimate defenders of it next season. With their core returning, the only departure of note is PJ Tucker. While the loss of Tucker will be significant, they have brought in George Hill, Rodney Hood, Semi Ojeleye, and Grayson Allen to add depth and outside shooting.
NBA Championship 2021/2022
Thu, June 2 2022, 9:58 AM
Los Angeles Lakers
Golden State Warriors
Los Angeles Clippers
The Brooklyn Nets will presumably be the favorites in the Eastern Conference, but the Bucks will be strong contenders yet again thanks to a solid offseason.