Now that the Las Vegas summer league has wound down for the National Basketball Association, teams are turning their attention back to finalizing their rosters. The Cleveland Cavaliers added one more piece to what they hope will be a championship team in 2015-16 by signing Richard Jefferson away from the Dallas Mavericks. Jefferson played a valuable role last season by filling in with strong offense when Chandler Parsons was on the shelf with knee issues. Also, his hustle made him much more of a contributor on defense than observers had expected him to be at the beginning of the NBA betting season.
2015 Off-Season NBA Betting Rumors
In Miami, the team has more point guards than they need – and a logjam for playing time is about to result. The team just re-signed Goran Dragic to a five-year, $86 million max contract. Shabazz Napier, two seasons removed from leading UConn to a national title, is ready to show that he can give a team what it needs from the point in the NBA. The Heat also have Mario Chalmers, who was a major contributor to the last two titles the Heat won, is also in the mix. All three expect to get playing time – but how will Eric Spoelstra divvy the time up? According to Barry Jackson from the Miami Herald, the days that Chalmers will have in Miami are dwindling. The Heat can take its time but appear to want to find a deal as quickly as possible. Chalmers scored 10.2 points per game last year for the Heat, but his three-point percentage was a career-low 29. Teams that think they can find better shooting looks for Chalmers will likely be interesting in trading for him.
Forward Chris Copeland, formerly of the Indiana Pacers and New York Knicks, looks like his next NBA stop might be in Milwaukee. According to ESPN sources, a deal is in the works that should be completed this week. Last year, Copeland played in 50 games for Indiana, shooting 31 percent from behind the arc and averaging 6.2 points per game. The Bucks want Copeland to add some offensive punch off the bench to a team that already could be surprisingly good under the leadership of Jason Kidd, as the starting five of Khris Middleton, Michael Carter-Williams, Jabari Parker, Giannis Antetokounmpo and Greg Monroe is fairly salty and will only improve with a solid bench behind it.
Boston chose R.J. Hunter with the 28th overall pick in the recent draft and they are expected to sign him to a deal by the end of this week. Hunter is a player in the image of Jimmer Fredette, a sharpshooter who was a major force in Georgia State’s appearance in the NCAA tournament this past season. Hunter’s shooting percentage is a bit of a concern, as he only made 30 percent of his shots – and the college arc is a little closer than the NBA’s three-point line. In the NBA summer league, Hunter put 15.6 points in the bucket per game, but he still had a hard time hitting open shots, only converting 35 percent of his three-pointers. If he is going to become the contributor that the Celtics envisioned when they drafted him, he will have to become more automatic from downtown.