The latest NBA rumors suggest the OKC Thunder have no plans to trade their young star guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander.
The Thunder are in the midst of a rebuild that could be slowed by Chet Holmgren’s injury. Gilgeous-Alexander was named as a possible target for the New York Knicks after they failed to win Donovan Mitchell.
Meanwhile, the Golden State Warriors are reportedly ready to talk to Jordan Poole about a contract extension. The Warriors have until Oct. 17, a day before the start of the 2022-23 NBA season, to sign Poole for an extension. If they don’t agree on a deal, he’ll become a restricted free agent for the next offseason.
Here’s the latest NBA Rumors Roundup for September 23, 2022, brought to you by Sportskeeda.
Alex Caruso could start as a point guard for the Bulls
The Chicago Bulls will be without the Lonzo Ball at the start of the 2022-23 NBA season. Ball is scheduled to undergo arthroscopic debridement surgery on his left knee next week.
It will be reassessed in four to six weeks. Ball underwent surgery in January this year to repair a torn meniscus.
The Bulls were one of the best teams in the Eastern Conference last season before injuries ravaged their roster. With Ball out for a period of time, head coach Billy Donovan must find a replacement within the team.
Alex Caruso will likely earn the starting nod at training camp, according to The Athletic’s Darnell Mayberry. Caruso can handle the ball but his main asset is his defence. He may not be a deadly scorer, but Zach LaVine, DeMar DeRozan and Nikola Vucevic can shoulder the offensive load.
Other potential candidates for the starting job include Goran Dragic, Ayo Dosunmu and Coby White. Dragic is an NBA veteran who performed well at this year’s EuroBasket. Dosunmu played admirably as a starter last season, while White is better suited as a substitute goalscorer.
OKC Thunder does not plan to trade Shai Gilgeous-Alexander
Unsurprisingly, when the New York Knicks failed to land Donovan Mitchell this offseason, they were immediately linked with Shai Gilgeous-Alexander. The 24-year-old OKC Thunder guard is one of the best young players in the NBA today.
However, the Thunder are in the midst of a full rebuild and are ready to fill the tank to sign Victor Wembanyama in the 2023 draft.
It’s not the first time Gilgeous-Alexander’s name has been mentioned in trade rumors, but Thunder general manager Sam Presti has refuted all of those reports. Presti said (per Thunderous Intentions):
“The only reason we’re talking about this is because another player was traded on another team and the aggregation engine needs more content.
“We love Shai. He’s going to be such a good player. The thing about him is that you can’t get long-term results with short-term people.”
Gilgeous-Alexander will enter the first year of his five-year $172 million rookie max renewal next season. He will miss training camp and possibly the start of the season due to a grade 2 MCL sprain in his left knee.
Heat emerges as a potential target for Jae Crowder
The Phoenix Suns had the best record in the NBA last season but did not advance past the Western Conference semifinals. They are currently being sold after team owner Robert Sarver was found guilty of workplace misconduct.
The Suns are still considered contenders but could reshuffle their roster and are reportedly trying to move Crowder. ESPN’s Brian Windhorst revealed earlier this week on NBA Today that Phoenix is actively buying Crowder and there are multiple suitors.
One of the teams reportedly interested in Crowder is the Miami Heat, according to the Miami Herald’s Barry Jackson. The Heat are looking for a suitable replacement for PJ Tucker, who joined the Philadelphia 76ers. Crowder previously played for Miami in 2020 and is said to be interested in a reunion.
Warriors discuss Jordan Poole contract extension
Jordan Poole and the Golden State Warriors are reportedly ready to talk about a contract extension, according to The Athletic’s Anthony Slater. Warriors general manager Bob Myers announced in a press conference that they will be speaking to Poole’s representatives following their preseason tour of Japan.
The Warriors will play the Washington Wizards in two preseason games on September 29 and October 1. That means the Warriors and Poole will likely start negotiations in early October.
The 23-year-old guard could sign a four-year, $80 million deal or pursue a deal closer to Anfernee Simon’s $100 million deal with the Portland Trail Blazers.
Poole was one of the most improved players in the NBA last season and a key part of the Warriors’ championship run. In 74 games, he averaged 18.5 points, 4.0 assists, and 3.4 rebounds per game.
The problem for Golden State is that they have other players eligible for an extension in Klay Thompson, Draymond Green and Andrew Wiggins. The Warriors could face some difficult decisions in the near future.
NBA franchise could be sold for $3 billion
Robert Sarver has started selling the Phoenix Suns and Phoenix Mercury.
Sarver was suspended by the NBA for a year and fined $10 million for workplace misconduct. Many felt the punishment wasn’t severe enough, and several called for a lifetime ban and the sale of his NBA franchise.
The Suns are currently valued at around $1.8 billion to $1.9 billion, according to The Athletic’s Mike Vorkunov. Vortunov estimated that Sarver could sell the team for as much as $3 billion, making it the most expensive sale in NBA history.
It would surpass Steve Ballmer’s purchase of Donald Sterling’s LA Clippers for $2 billion in 2014.
But who could have that kind of money to buy the Suns?
ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne has named Jeff Bezos, Bob Iger, Larry Ellison and Laurene Jobs as potential buyers. Bezos, Igler, and Ellison are former CEOs of Amazon, Disney, and Oracle, respectively. Jobs is the widow of former Apple CEO Steve Jobs.