The Roy-Hibbert-to-Portland talk that began as soon as free agency began July 1 is now dead, according to ESPN. It seemed quizzical to us why Portland was adamant as soon as yesterday it was going to offer him a max deal of four years and $58 million. After considering what life without a nice, developing big would have been like, the Pacers decided to match any offer for him. By not offering Hibbert, the Blazers can go after Nicolas Batum‘s offer sheet. Minnesota is trying to compile a Portland reunion and will offer Batum a big deal. The Blazers would have had the first year of Hibbert’s salary put on their cap for next season if they’d offered him. Without that money now, Portland can be a little more flexible about its positioning. … Lou Williams will get to play in front of friends and family for the next few years in Atlanta after he agreed to play for the Hawks. Atlanta will use a $5 million mid-level exception on him. According to ESPN, one of the best sixth men in the league last year will join forces with Josh Smith. It will be interesting to see how he works as a starter now. … One more actual business note is that Dorell Wright is being traded from Golden State to Philadelphia for the rights to an unidentified draft pick. … Austin Daye came out firing in his Summer League game this morning from Orlando against the Magic with 24 points (8-of-10 shots) and six boards. The fourth-year (can it really be?) guard from Detroit looked every bit like the guy who’s played in 182 career NBA games vs. guys who have mostly yet to play one. Kris Joseph was having himself a nice afternoon for Boston, too, at the start. Nothing rivaled Reggie Jackson‘s throwdown on the break from the first day in Orlando, though. … Some of our takeaways from the first couple days of watching Summer League is the usual stuff, about how there’s sloppiness because everyone is gunning for themselves. Against that backdrop though, the smooth players stand out even more. Lance Stephenson had 28 points and picked apart guys with 10-of-14 shooting. We really like Orlando’s Andrew Nicholson, the No. 19 pick from St. Bonaventure. He’s a smart guy, a physics and chemistry buff, who said he sees every game like a problem to be solved. He looks like it out there, opting to use a developing mid-range game when a defender slides in front of him. We also like Detroit’s Kim English, who’s used to frenetic paces and high-speed games like summer ball from his seasons at Missouri. Andre Drummond and Perry Jones have a similar, men-among-boys situation where they are (literally) head-and-shoulders ahead of the opponents. They’ve played hard so far, and while it’s only two days and that’s an admittedly low bar to have for two first-round picks, that was one of the biggest concerns around them. … Hit the jump to read about Blake Griffin making it official.
Blake Griffin was one of the last three players to make the U.S. Olympic team and now he’s officially been made a new king of L.A. to boot. The second-best power forward in the game — behind Kevin Love — formally agreed to sign his five-year, $95 million contract. What do you want to see from Griffin in these Olympics besides his dunks? … Quin Snyder‘s latest career move stuck us as a long-distance lateral move. The former golden boy as a player at Duke and later a coach at Missouri was exiled to the D-League for troubles at Mizzou. But he’d worked his way back from the Austin Toros and last season, the Lakers’ bench as assistant to Mike Brown. Now he’s joining CSKA Moscow as an assistant. Snyder had fallen short as head coach finalist in Charlotte but was being considered in Orlando. … The Nike #Riseabove truck is to hoopheads as the ice cream truck is to kids. If we saw this in our area we’d run up as fast as we could to the back and test our vert in some new Super.Flys. It’s going from L.A. to D.C. this summer. Keep your eyes peeled if you’re along the path. … Rashard Lewis doesn’t need money anymore, but he’d like a ring. The Heat have a veteran’s minimum to offer of two years and $2.8 million and a championship trophy to dangle in front of the guy. Lewis is getting more than $13.7 million from New Orleans in his buyout with the team, so he’ll be OK. … We’re out like Lou Williams.
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