Celtics camp signee Trevion Williams’ 2021-22 highlights with the Purdue Boilermakers

Get to know the undrafted big man’s game ahead of Las Vegas Summer League.

It is the time of the NBA league calendar again where a bunch of prospects start joining rosters only a fraction of them will remain on by the time the regular season rolls around in October, with fans over-estimating their chances of sticking on a few exhibition games held in Las Vegas, Nevada.

But that hope is indeed based on success stories, and fans of the Boston Celtics are perhaps already growing attached to the recently-signed Purdue big man Trevion Williams the team is bringing on to join their Sin City exhibition squad in the frontcourt for 2022 to play alongside their No. 53 pick in this year’s draft, point guard JD Davison out of Alabama.

If you aren’t too familiar with Williams’ game or just want to see more, fan YouTuber Tomasz Kordylewski put together a highlight clip to either end.

Check it out for yourself and see how his passing game and skillset might just land him a spot on Boston bench come fall.

This post originally appeared on Celtics Wire. Follow us on Facebook!

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Ime Udoka may be sour on how last season ended, but says team’s growth may attract free agents

Ime Udoka got a chance to reflect on a wild season over the past week or so.

The dust finally settled after a disappointing end to a very good season for the Boston Celtics. The team’s head coach Ime Udoka got a chance to reflect on the Celtics’ 2021-22 campaign over the past week or so and was asked about it Friday. While “you’re proud of” the accomplishments and growth of the team, the Celtics coach noted “you have a sour taste in your mouth based on how it finished” — understandable, though he seemed optimistic even so.

Udoka went on to talk about improvements for the team, which he said would likely happen within the team after “having a year under our belt with each other”.

The Celtics coach was asked about free agents and how important it is to attract them. “Watching the growth of our young guys, I think that’s appealing to other players,” he explained, suggesting Boston’s recent success and upward trajectory could be an incentive for such free agents.

With free agency for the 2022-23 season set to start on June 30, we will not have to wait long to put his theory to the test.

This post originally appeared on Celtics Wire. Follow us on Facebook!

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1 burning question at every offensive position following Bears offseason program

There are still some big question marks for the Bears offense ahead of training camp. We break it down by position:

The Chicago Bears recently wrapped their offseason program, and the team now gets a deserving break before things kick back into gear.

While the conclusion of mandatory minicamp brought some clarity, it also raised even more questions ahead of training camp next month.

That’s especially true on offense, which is undergoing plenty of changes this offseason, including learning a new scheme under Luke Getsy. But there are still some huge question marks heading into camp.

Here’s one burning question for every offensive position following the Bears’ offseason program.

Report: Stashed 2020 Boston Celtics draft prospect Yam Madar to skip Las Vegas Summer League

The former No. 47 pick will instead play for the Israeli national team.

The Boston Celtics might have a little more room on their roster for this year’s Las Vegas Summer League exhibition series with Sports Rabbi reporting that Israeli point guard Yam Madar plans to remain overseas to participate in Israel National Team games taking on Poland and vs. Estonia this summer instead.

Drafted by the Celtics with the 47th pick of the 2020 NBA draft, Madar spent his first season after the draft with the Israeli club Hapoel Tel Aviv before participating in last year’s Las Vegas Summer League. The unexpected signing of point guard Dennis Schroder made a regular roster slot for Madar a non-starter, and it is possible that the Celtics drafting Alabama floor general JD Davison might have played a role in his decision to skip summer league this year.

No official confirmation from Madar as to the reason, but he has had a solid season with European club Partizan Belgrade, and may wish to continue honing his craft before trying to make the leap to the NBA again.

This post originally appeared on Celtics Wire. Follow us on Facebook!

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Podcast: Michael Scotto on Houston’s 2022 draft, free agency plans

Michael Scotto, NBA insider for HoopsHype, joins us to preview free agency and recap Houston’s strong draft class — led by Jabari Smith.

Michael Scotto, NBA insider for HoopsHype, joins The Lager Line podcast to preview free agency for the Rockets and recap Houston’s strong 2022 draft class — led by Auburn forward Jabari Smith.

In the show, Scotto explains why he concurs with the rave reviews of Rockets general manager Rafael Stone for his work bringing Smith, LSU’s Tari Eason, and Kentucky’s TyTy Washington to Houston. “A really good draft, no questions about it,” Scotto concludes.

Topics on Friday’s newly released episode include:

  • Scotto’s level of surprise in seeing Orlando draft Duke’s Paolo Banchero, rather than Smith, at No. 1 overall
  • How Smith and other 2022 rookies may fit with the Rockets
  • Whether Kyrie Irving is likely to leave the Nets in free agency, and the potential impact on Brooklyn’s draft assets due to Houston
  • If the James Harden trade from January 2021 is aging better than expected for Stone and the Rockets, given Brooklyn’s uncertainty
  • Possible centers that Houston could pair with Alperen Sengun in 2022 free agency, which begins June 30
  • Updates on the potential offseason trade markets for John Wall and Eric Gordon, as well as the contract buyout option for Wall
  • An assessment of the value received by the Rockets in the Christian Wood trade, which ultimately resulted in Washington and two future second-round picks

Friday’s complete episode can be listened to below. Each episode of the show is also made available via flagship radio station SportsTalk 790, as well as to all major podcast distributors under “The Lager Line.”

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Boston signs undrafted Purdue big man Trevion Williams to camp deal for Las Vegas Summer League

His excellent passing game might be enough to get the former Boilermaker to the NBA with Boston.

Even though the 2022 NBA draft is already in the proverbial rearview mirror, that does not mean the Boston Celtics have entirely left it behind them, instead combing through the undrafted players in search of potential additions to the roster.

On Friday afternoon, they may have found such a player, signing Purdue big man Trevion Williams to a camp deal to play for the team in the Las Vegas Summer League kicking off in July according to the Lafayette Journal & Courier’s Mike Carmin. A slightly undersized 6-foot-8 center with a 7-foot-3 wingspan who is especially adept at moving the ball and is a passable defender at the NCAA level, the Purdue product likely went undrafted due to concern over his 3-point shot, lack of lift, and tendency to turn the ball over.

Still, the former Boilermaker is an absolute unit of a big man at 265 pounds who could prove useful to the Celtics given his unique combination of skills and size with even a modicum of ballhandling above what you see from most bigs.

He will have an uphill climb given his relative shortcomings on defense and away from the basket, but passes and reads well enough that him making the team as a two way player is very much in play.

This post originally appeared on Celtics Wire. Follow us on Facebook!

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Rockets welcome Jabari Smith, Tari Eason, TyTy Washington to Houston

Rockets draftees Jabari Smith, Tari Eason, and TyTy Washington traveled to their new NBA home Friday and shared some initial impressions.

HOUSTON — Rockets draftees Jabari Smith, Tari Eason, and TyTy Washington each traveled to their new NBA home Friday and shared their initial impressions upon visiting Toyota Center for the first time.

The former Auburn forward, LSU forward, and Kentucky guard all made their way from Barclays Center in Brooklyn — where the 2022 NBA draft took place Thursday — to Houston less than 24 hours later.

It was a whirlwind day, but each of Houston’s prized rookie prospects was clearly thrilled by the experience.

“It made me happy,” Smith said of the support shown by the Rockets and their fans after his selection. “It puts a smile on my face.”

The focus will turn to the basketball court imminently, since the Rockets are gearing up for the start of 2022 NBA summer league play on July 7. Going into that process, here’s what each of the new prospects — along with general manager Rafael Stone and head coach Stephen Silas — had to say at the starting point of their NBA journeys.

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2022 NBA draft grades and analysis for every first-round pick

Rookie Wire went through and graded all 30 picks from the first round of the draft now that the smoke has cleared from the evening.

The smoke has cleared on the NBA draft as the basketball community has had some time to reflect on the selections, trades and other moves made on Thursday.

Of course, the Orlando Magic made the first splash of the night after taking Duke forward Paolo Banchero with the No. 1 pick. The choice may have been a surprise to those around the sport, but it wasn’t to those in charge of making the selection.

Elsewhere, several teams made trades to help themselves now or in the future. There were some winners and losers, and other teams that genuinely confused everyone with some of their moves. The festivities will certainly give fans plenty to talk about in the coming days.

Now that we’ve had some time to evaluate the picks and trades from Thursday, Rookie Wire went through and graded all 30 picks from the first round.

Bills’ three-year salary cap outlook ranks in middle of pack

#Bills’ three-year salary cap outlook ranks in middle of the NFL pack:

Pro Football Focus annually takes a forecasted look at every NFL team’s salary cap during the offseason. The football analytics outlet will rank teams head-to-head in terms of how their salary cap could look over the next three years.

While the Buffalo Bills have spent pretty big, they have a solid standing. Buffalo isn’t amongst the NFL’s best, but considering their dollars spent, PFF putting them at 15th overall is a good placement.

Here is PFF’s analysis on the Bills and their salary cap:

Thanks to prudent cap management over the last several years, the Bills were able to extend star wide receiver Stefon Diggs despite quarterback Josh Allen signing an extension that, at the time, set the record for fully guaranteed money at signing with $100 million. Unlike the Green Bay Packers with Davante Adams and Kansas City Chiefs with Tyreek Hill, the Bills elected to roster one of the league’s highest-paid signal callers and pass-catchers simultaneously, but they earned the ability to do so with sharp roster construction.

They were also able to recruit game-wrecking edge defender Von Miller away from the Los Angeles Rams with a six-year, $120 million extension (that’s more like a three-year, $52.5 million extension in reality). Buffalo is going all-in on a Super Bowl run after suffering one of the more painful playoff defeats in recent memory at the hands of Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs.

Nevertheless, resources are getting a bit thin, and rookie contract players need to step up to push this team to the pinnacle once and for all.

Buffalo general manager Brandon Beane has mustered a lot of good deals and salary cap work during his tenure. But the Bills have some more tooling on the horizon.

The biggest thing on Beane’s to-do list likely is Jordan Poyer. The safety wants an extension and has made it known. Beane has his work cut out for him there.

Next up is linebacker Tremaine Edmunds. He’s playing on the fifth-year option of his rookie deal and he’s slated to be a free agent next summer like Poyer.

Beane is going to earn his own paycheck in the coming months with such decisions.

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Which Bears players are poised for a breakout season in 2022?

Our Bears Wire staff is sharing their thoughts on the players who have the potential for a breakout season in 2022.

The Chicago Bears are in the middle of a rebuild under new general manager Ryan Poles, which has seen the departures of key veterans and the emergence of a younger roster.

The Bears have some young players who will be key to this team’s future success, including some who have already shown promise and could be in for big seasons.

Our Bears Wire staff is sharing their thoughts on the players who have the potential for a breakout season in 2022, which includes plenty of weapons for quarterback Justin Fields.