Oden to Spurs?
ODEN IN A SPURS JERSEY A POSSIBILITY
Written by Jose Grijalva
Former number 1 overall pick Greg Oden has been plagued by injuries his NBA career and he's determined to make a comeback from his third microfracture surgery. Many teams are already rumored to be interested in him as his potential is looked on as being one of the best big men of the game, if he can stay healthy. The Miami Heat are looking to pursue him because of their defensive woes, but that may not be the easiest decision for the franchise as they're likely to be over the luxury tax until the 2015-2016 season and the new collective bargaining agreement will be tough against repeat offenders.
San Antonio Spurs fans have been wanting the team to sign a legitimate big man to help Tim Duncan get a fifth championship ring and have been excited about the signing of Europe's best big man in Aron Baynes. With Baynes reportedly on board, should the Spurs go after Greg Oden? Even though the team doesn't have any roster spots open, there's plenty of possibilities for the Spurs that make an Oden signing realistic depending on which route the organization wants to go.
With Baynes joining the team, this will mean the Spurs will have to make room by waiving or trading a player. The logical candidate for this would have to be Dejuan Blair, who hasn't seen many minutes this season with Tiago Splitter improving and bringing what Dejuan does to the starting unit. Boris Diaw's versatility makes him an obvious candidate for the third big slot in the rotation with Matt Bonner's shooting bumping him over Blair. Once room is made for Baynes, the Spurs have would to be in the same situation for Oden. The team will have a free agent in the big position with Tiago Splitter finishing off his first deal. If Aron makes an impression on the team, Splitter will easily be replaceable especially with a $4.9 million qualifying offer. That would leave the Spurs with a roster spot for Oden and also possibly more money to offer him to lure him from other contenders (depending how much Manu Ginobili and Stephen Jackson demand if they return to the team).
Another scenario is the team using their amnesty clause, but that wouldn't be too realistic since the likely candidate for that would be Matt Bonner. Bonner is due $3.9 million next season and would best be used as trade bait with his expiring deal over just letting him go and still counting against the salary cap. With a Splitter departure, Bonner could fill in while Oden is rehabbing or slowly getting back into shape. Oden's future in a Spurs uniform will depend on Tiago Splitter most of all. If Splitter will take a reasonable deal, he may be wearing a Spurs jersey next year and there'd be no minutes for Oden in a San Antonio jersey. Tiago playing well this season shouldn't be too much of a shock either. He's in a contract year and trying to inflate his worth as much as he can. The team may be thinking about this too and may balk at bringing him back, which would leave the door for a Greg Oden debut in silver and black if he wants to play next to a former number one pick and the greatest power forward of all time in Tim Duncan.
Splitter was too big of an investment time wise to get him to this point. He will be back. Witness the off-season re-signings. They will do everything in their power to keep the successful pieces to their team project intact and Splitter is a part of that. No one even knows as yet what Oden has to offer if anything. Sam Bowie was the first pick in the draft at one time too.
Taking a flyer on Oden would be a great idea if the Spurs had the space and financial flexibility to get him cheaply.
But someone is going to overpay for Oden, and I can't see the point in scuttling positive known quantities like Splitter to take a shot that Oden may someday be healthy.
No thanks! Oden a pass for me!
I don't understand why anyone would even speculate on Oden with our roster where it is. Oden has tried and failed 3 times already. Let's get someone in here who is a real prospect (like Aron Baynes).
And what I mean by real prospect is someone who could really be a contributor, not the next Tim Duncan (although that would be nice).
To me Oden’s situation is a little puzzling. On one hand we could be looking at a winning lottery ticket bought cheaply. On the other, if we bite, we could be the subject of future basketball sports bar trivia in the same sentence with Sam Bowie. Oden is an unproven entity who has yet been healthy long enough to prove himself in the NBA. Being injury prone is quickly becoming synonymous with Oden – whether he can last in the NBA environment is unknown. I’ll pass. If the Spurs feel they need a long range project and can get him for the cheap, Austin is only 60 miles away.
Report: Spurs interested in Greg Oden
By Dan McCarney
Fresh off their training camp flirtation with Eddy Curry, the Spurs are reportedly pondering another reclamation project.
Fox Sport’s Sam Amico, AKA Greg Oden’s personal publicist, reports that the Spurs are among a handful of teams interested in the No. 1 pick in the 2007 draft, whose agent is “100 percent sure” he’ll be back in the NBA by next season.
“”He’s rehabbing and doing very well,” Oden’s agent, Michael Conley Sr., told Amico.
Amrico reports that Cleveland, Atlanta and Memphis are rumored to have already worked the 7-foot center out. Milwaukee, Chicago, Golden State and the Spurs were also mentioned as having interest. An additional report by ESPN.com listed Dallas among the potential candidates.
Taken first overall out of Ohio State by Portland, Oden showed major promise when healthy but rarely was before a series of knee injuries drove him out of the league after just two seasons.
Which means at 24, he’s had more major knee surgeries (three) than NBA campaigns.
Report: Mavericks interested in Greg Oden for 2013-2014
ESPN Dallas reports that the Dallas Mavericks have been in touch with the player rep for free agent Greg Oden.
Former No. 1 overall pick Oden reportedly plans to return to the NBA next season, after his time with the Portland Trail Blazers ended with a serious knee injury. Oden has been out this season and still has a long way to go to recover from his third microfracture procedure. In total, his knee has been surgically repaired five times, making the rehabilitation a slow process. However, Oden has made returning to the NBA a clear priority.
There are some reports that Miami is also interested in Oden, although Oden’s agent said that the Heat never contacted him about Oden.
I would def not pass on Oden if Spurs can get him and not to break the bank.
8 NBA teams mentioned seem like more than a handful and most have more financial wiggle room than San Antonio. Interesting that Portland is not among the 8 teams.
Wasn't Ralph Sampson a 1st pick also?
Yup, 1st pick in '83, 7'4" Rookie of the Year and voted to NBA Hall of Fame for class of 2012.
Its going to become a bidding war that I hope the Mavs win. Why? Because chances are very good that its gonna be a bust.
what if another team offers Splitter a huge deal? his qualifying offer is $4.9 million and a bad team could easily offer him $4-5 million more.
remember we also are signing Aron Baynes and that's 4 legit bigs who will want minutes if you keep Splitter. Baynes signed for too low of a salary for what's reported to be a multi year deal. you have to give the kid a due diligence to prove himself for that.
Baynes And Spurs Busy Playing The Waiting Game
When word spread from Slovenia to San Antonio earlier in the week that Aron Baynes and the Spurs had reached a multi-year deal, the news came as a bit of a surprise. But now with no formal announcement out of San Antonio on the 6-foot-10 center, questions arise regarding the delay and Baynes' immediate NBA future.
Leave it up to Greg Oden to hold up the deal between Aron Baynes and the San Antonio Spurs.
Alright, now that may be a very far fetched conclusion to jump to even as the Spurs entertain thoughts of signing Oden -- who has not played in the NBA since December 2009 and after undergoing five various surgeries on his knees since the Portland Trail Blazers made him the first overall pick in the 2007 NBA Draft -- but it's equally easy to draw such parallels.
The Spurs want to sign a center. The interest in Oden is reportedly there (Link). And while the "Baynes to sign with San Antonio" headlines have been floating about since Wednesday, the deal remains up in the air. As for now, the expected 3.5 year (team options for the last two years) deal that includes a buyout estimated at $400,000 is as mysterious as the Spurs even courting the 6-foot-10, 260 pound center to begin with.
It's not that Baynes' overseas resume with Union Olimpija Ljubljana in Slovenia and the Australian National team is in question here. It's more about sitting around and watching a team like the Miami Heat struggle mightily to find the right fit in signing a center for over the last two seasons, and then reading about the Spurs swooping in to grab yet another European rooted player on the rise.
This isn't a knock on Baynes. Far from it. But if or when the final details of the agreement become finalized between Baynes and the Spurs, then front offices around the league (and even overseas for that matter) have no choice but to once again stand up and applaud the San Antonio for getting the job done in regards to both scouting, recruiting and not breaking the bank to find another piece to their puzzle.
Here's what we know about Baynes: he's having a solid season in Slovenia and the established relationships he has with the Spurs are rooted in the Australian National team.
Baynes has been playing this season in Slovenia for Olimpija, where he averaged 12.4 points and 6.8 rebounds per game in Adriatic League and 13.8 points and 9.8 rebounds per game in the Euroleague. In Baynes' last game for Union Olimpija Ljubljana, he finished with 13 points, 11 rebounds, 4 steals and 3 blocks against second ranked Zvezda. He currently ranks sixth in the league in rebounds and fourth in blocks per game. And that is really the main aspect that's stood out about Baynes' game and which eventually sold the Spurs on the big man -- rebounding.
"I can't be satisfied with where I'm at. I have to stay focused on getting better," Baynes said last month.
The 26-year old led the Euroleague in rebounding per 36 minutes in the first 10 games of the season for Olimpija by averaging 13.5 rebounds per game. Not only does he work both ends of the glass (Baynes averaged 5.4 offensive rebounds per 36 minutes in the Euroleague), but he plays his man (boxing out) before playing the ball. The other side of the argument pertains to the adjustment period Baynes will face making the move from Europe to the NBA. The game faster and more physical, but playing sound defense is constantly preached particularly in San Antonio. While Baynes has shown to play smart and playing within himself Gregg Popovich is known for riding first time players who make the move from overseas to the NBA and this time likely will be no different.
After going undrafted out of Washington State in 2009, Baynes has played overseas in Lithuania (Lietuvos Rytas), Germany (Oldenburg), Greece (Ikaros Kallitheas B.C.) and Slovenia, while also playing alongside Spurs' point guard Patty Mills on the Australian National team since 2010.
Brett Brown, an assistant coach with the Spurs, is also the former Australian National team coach, so the connections between Baynes and San Antonio these days is thanks in large part to Brown recognizing the talent he coached and understanding how the Spurs could benefit from Baynes' ability.
"Every NBA club would know who he is and obviously Brown had a belief and saw something in Aron," Australian basketball legend Andrew Gaze recently explained of Brown and Baynes' relationship.
"He has that size, athleticism and competitive instinct. You see it in every Australian that does well in the United States, that they have that (mongrel) about them and Aron is no different.
"He doesn't back down from anyone."
Baynes also brings championship experience to the floor. Not only did Baynes compete at the 2010 World Championships, but he won a 2010 Lithuanian National Championship as well and regardless if a title comes in the NBA or overseas, the underlying belief holds true.
But how good can Baynes really be for San Antonio?
What role will he play with the Spurs -- coming off of the bench playing spot minutes or that of a project who will see his fair share of time in the D-League?
The answers may come slow, but even Aron Baynes knows waiting is part of the process.
Spurs in for Oden?
January 20, 2013
Greg Oden is talking comeback, and interest around the NBA is sky high. That in itself is news, considering Oden hasn't played in more than two years.
But we're talking about the former No. 1 overall pick and a guy who doesn't turn 25 until later this month, not to mention a man who collected 20 rebounds in his final NBA game (Dec. 1, 2009 vs. Miami).
So forget the three microfracture knee surgeries for now. Plenty of teams are lining up to take a crack at the 7-footer. The short list reportedly includes Boston, Miami, Cleveland and Dallas.
Oden's agent, Mike Conley, has insisted that Oden is 100 percent and a future All-Star. Oden is currently taking classes at Ohio State, and while he's expected to sign with a team this season, it'd be for continued rehabilitation purposes only. He plans to actually play games next season. And with the way things are going, he will indeed be back in the league.
Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge has admitted to keeping close tabs on Oden.
"We're monitoring Greg, like all NBA teams are, but we have not attempted to sign him," Ainge told WEEI radio in Boston. "But we are monitoring him and having (conversations) with his people just to see where he is."
Ainge also confirmed that the interest in Oden is far and wide.
"Everybody is looking to roll the dice and take a chance on a big guy," Ainge said. "So, yeah, there's definitely competition."
Portland made Oden the top pick in the 2007 draft. He compiled averages of 9.4 points and 7.3 rebounds in 82 total games.
Oden's camp is hoping to come to terms with a team sometime around the All-Star break in mid-February, or just after the Feb. 21 trading deadline.
Sam Amico/Fox Sports
Cavaliers, Heat become front runners to land Oden
Somebody is going to sign Greg Oden in hopes he can return next season and play a few minutes a night off the bench. Yes, he has had seven knee surgeries — three microfracture — at age 24 and hasn’t played in the NBA in three years.
But such is the state of real bigs in the NBA that if he can give a team 12-15 minutes a night off the bench on an affordable deal, teams will take a look.
I don’t know when, but there seems to be some momentum for it to happen sooner — say in the next month or so — than in the future.
As for who might land him, CBSSports.com has an update.
The Cleveland Cavaliers and the Miami Heat have emerged as the leaders to land former No. 1 pick Greg Oden.
The 7-foot Oden, who hasn’t played since Dec. 5, 2009 due to multiple knee injuries, is hoping to take a visit down to Miami to meet with Pat Riley and the Heat in the next week, a source told CBSSports.com.
If it comes down to money, Cleveland is under the salary cap and can offer more, Miami could only offer the league minimum. With either team this likely is a series of one-year deals at the team’s option. Other teams such as Boston, San Antonio and Dallas were reportedly interested but Oden is narrowing his options.
Just something to watch, this seems to be happening.
Related link: Allen Iverson says he wants another shot in NBA but not through D-League | ProBasketballTalk
Ya the Heat will get him and not good for him cuz Spurs would of been the team for him but they dont need him.
so Oden is debating either one of the worst teams in the league or the defending NBA champions this year?
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