Former Cardinals

Terrence Williams Will Workout For The Sacramento Kings Today

Associated Press

Associated Press

As we all know, former Louisville star Terrence Williams’ NBA career hasn’t gone quite as planned. However, it appears that the dream is still alive.

According to Shams Charania of RealGM.com, Williams will workout for the Sacramento Kings on Thursday. He finished the 2011-12 regular season with the Kings after being waived by the Houston Rockets

Williams most recently played in the Philippines, but was waived after just three games for “taking too many shots from the perimeter.” His last stint in the NBA was with the Boston Celtics, but was waived during the summer of 2013. The Seattle native was arrested after a domestic incident, but charges were later dropped.

He spent the 2013-14 season playing in the NBDL where he was one of the league’s top players.

In 34 games he averaged impressive 20.6 points , 5.1 rebounds, 6.3 assists and 1.4 steals. He helped them to win the West Division title. When the NBDL season came to an end, Williams took his game outside the country. He’s played in the Phillipines, Turkey and the Dominican Republic.

It’ll be tough for Williams to earn a long-term NBA contract, but for what it’s worth, his most successful stint in the NBA came while he was with the Kings. Once he was waived by the Rockets, Williams signed on with Sacramento for the remainder of the season. In 18 games he averaged 8.8 points, 4.1 rebounds and 3.1 assists.

Peyton Siva Has Signed With The Orlando Magic

Andy Lyons | Getty Images

Andy Lyons | Getty Images

Just two weeks after the Detroit Pistons announced that they wouldn’t pick up the second year of his contract, former Louisville star Peyton Siva has inked a contract with the Orlando Magic.

Marc Spears of Yahoo! Sports was the first to report the news. Josh Robbins, the Magic beat writer for the Orlando Sentinel, reports that Siva’s deal is non-guaranteed and he’ll likely be sent to Orlando’s NBDL affiliate in Erie, PA., prior to the start of the 2014-15 season.

The Magic already have 15 players under contract for next season, which is why he’ll likely be sent to the D-League. This isn’t the perfect situation for Siva, but Orlando obviously thought highly enough of him to bring him on as a back-up option. He’ll likely stay in the NBDL unless someone is waived or injured.

After being drafted in the second round by Detroit last year, Siva signed a two year deal with the team with the second year being a team option. The Seattle native spent time in the NBDL during his rookie season, but finished the year on the official roster and played his best basketball down the stretch.

Unfortunately for Siva, a coaching change likely played the biggest role in Detroit’s decision to waive him. Maurice Cheeks was the head coach and Joe Dumars was the president of basketball operations for Detroit when Siva was drafted, but both have since been let go by the team. Stan Van Gundy was hired in May and ultimately decided to go in a different director.

Fortunately for Siva, his strong finish to the 2013-14 regular season and a solid showing in the NBA Summer league caught the attention of the Orlando organization. Considering the Magic’s options at the point guard position, it’s not that outlandish to see Siva earning some playing time if he’s given the opportunity.

Vikings Offensive Coordinator Says Bridgewater Should Have Been A Top 10 Pick

Brad Penner | USA Today Sports

Brad Penner | USA Today Sports

It wasn’t always for good reason, but former Louisville quarterback Teddy Bridgewater was one of the more talked about prospects heading into the 2014 NFL Draft. Unfortunately for Teddy, his lackluster Pro Day workout led to the majority of the national media writing him off as a guy who didn’t deserve to be taken in the first round.

The Minnesota Vikings didn’t put much stock into the national media’s perception of Bridgewater and traded up to get the last pick in the first round so they can land their future quarterback. It’s only July and Bridgewater has yet to play a game, but so far it sounds like the Vikings are extremely happy with their decision.

“I think he probably should’ve gone in the first 10 picks,”  Minnesota offensive coordinator Norv Turner said, via the team’s website earlier this week.

“He probably should’ve gone at least in the first half of the first round, and then we’re sitting there with an opportunity to get him when we did, it was a bonus to me.”

Vikings fans appear to be just as excited as Turner. According to a recent report by Darren Rovell of ESPN.com, Bridgewater’s jersey was the 13th highest seller in the NFL. Cleveland’s Johnny Manziel is the only rookie to have more jersey’s sold from April 1 – July 17.

It’s still a little early to predict who will be the week one starter for the Vikings. Most assumed that it would be veteran Matt Cassell, considering he just signed a two year deal with the team. However, Bridgewater’s performance in the OTA’s has given the Vikings staff something to consider.

Russ Smith Named To The NBA All Summer League Second Team

Photo | NBA.com

Photo | NBA.com

With just one more game left in the annual NBA Las Vegas Summer League, the NBA released the “All Summer League” teams on Sunday evening. After averaging 16-points, five rebounds and 6.4 assists in five games, former Cardinal Russ Smith was named to the second team. His 6.4 points per game led the entire league.

Samsung NBA Summer League Most Valuable Player:

Glen Rice, Jr. — Washington Wizards

Samsung All-NBA Summer League First Team

Doug McDermott — Chicago Bulls
Donatas Motiejunas — Houston Rockets
Otto Porter — Washington Wizards
Glen Rice, Jr. — Washington Wizards
Tony Snell — Chicago Bulls

Samsung All-NBA Summer League Second Team

Rudy Gobert — Utah Jazz
Tim Hardaway, Jr. — New York Knicks
Jordan McRae — Philadelphia 76ers
Russ Smith — New Orleans Pelicans
T.J. Warren — Phoenix Suns

Russ Smith’s NBA Contract Details Revealed

Jamie Rhodes | USA Today Sports

Jamie Rhodes | USA Today Sports

Just a week after being drafted by the New Orleans Pelicans with the 47th overall pick, Rick Pitino confirmed that Russ Smith had signed a guaranteed contract.

Considering all of Smith’s collegiate accolades it wouldn’t be fair to say that the guaranteed contract was a surprise, however most players that are taken late in the second round don’t get guaranteed deals and at times don’t even make the final roster.

Smith’s father informed the Courier-Journal that his son’s deal was for three years with the third year being a team option. The financial terms of Smith’s contract weren’t available until Friday morning.

TheCrunchZone.com reports that Smith will earn $507,336 during his rookie season. The first of the three year deal is the only one that is guaranteed. If New Orleans doesn’t waive Smith prior to the 2015-16 season, he’ll earn $980,431 in his second year.

If Russ is able to perform well enough during his first two seasons and New Orleans decides to pick up the option in year three, he’ll receive a very large pay day. If Smith is on the Pelican’s roster during the 2017-18 season, he’ll earn $1,251,245.

H/T The Crunch Zone

Gorgui Dieng Averaging A Double-Double In The NBA Summer League

Photo | ESPN.com

Photo | ESPN.com

To be honest, I wasn’t exactly sure if former Louisville big man Gorgui Dieng would be participating in the NBA summer league this year. After having a sensational finish to his rookie season with the Minnesota Timberwolves, it’s fair to wonder how much Gorgui would really benefit from the summer league.

As I’m sure you know, Dieng ended up playing with the T-Wolves in Vegas and has more than made the most of it. I think it’s safe to say that this will be his last appearance in the summer league.

Date Opponent Result MIN FGM-A 3PM-A FTM-A OFF DEF REB AST STL BLK TO PF PTS
Jul 16 vs PHX W 86-77 35 6-13 0-0 1-2 6 13 19 1 2 0 2 5 13
Jul 15 at CHI L 73-107 25 3-5 0-1 0-0 0 3 3 0 2 1 5 5 6
Jul 13 at WAS L 59-67 29 3-6 0-0 5-6 2 6 8 0 3 1 2 7 11
Jul 12 at DAL L 85-93 29 4-6 0-0 4-6 3 7 10 1 2 2 1 4 12

Through four games with Minnesota, Dieng is averaging a double-double, with 10.5 points, 10 rebounds and one block per game. Against The Phoenix Suns on Wednesday, Dieng finished with 13-points and 19-rebounds, which is the most for any player in this year’s summer league.

After playing very briefly for the first half of his rookie season, Dieng exploded following the league’s All Star break in February. He was named an All NBA Rookie Second Team selection. Gorgui received a healthy increase in minutes following Minnesota starting center Nikola Pekovic’s injury. He was named Western Conference Rooke of the Month in March. Dieng ranked fifth among Western Conference rookies in scoring (8.6 ppg) and second among all rookies in both rebounding (8.3 rpg) and field goal percentage (.613).

Teddy Bridgewater Hits Insane Full Court Shot With A Football

USA Today Sports Images

USA Today Sports Images

Following the Minnesota Vikings organized team activities, it appears that former Louisville quarterback Teddy Bridgewater has headed home. Bridgewater is currently in Miami and has made a few public appearances with management group that represents him, “The Elam Model.”

When returning to Miami Northwest High School over the weekend, Bridgewater stepped in the gymnasium and threw a Football From Full Court and connected nothing but net.

H/T TheVikingAge.com

Russ Smith’s Stellar Play Continues: He Leads The Summer League In Assists Per Game

Photo | New Orleans Advocate

Photo | New Orleans Advocate

You don’t need me to tell you that the NBA summer league isn’t nearly as competitive as the 82-game regular season with legitimate rosters full of veterans.

With that said, those who’ve doubted Russ Smith’s ability to play at the next level are starting to look more foolish each day.

Smith had his best performance of the summer league on Monday evening, scoring 14-pounds, dishing 10 assists and grabbing five rebounds. He had just three turnovers in 27-minutes of action.

Unfortunately his stellar performance came in a loss as the New Orleans Pelicans fell short to the San Antonio Spurs 88-86.

This was New Orleans’ first loss of the summer league after getting a win over the NBDL Select on Friday and the Los Angeles Lakers on Sunday.

Smith had 20 points, 9 rebounds, along with five assists and three steals in his summer league debut on Friday. He played the key role in a 21-2 fourth-quarter run that helped New Orleans erase a 19-point deficit for a comeback win.

Russ took somewhat of a step against the Lakers, shooting 3-of-11 from the floor, finishing with just six points and six turnovers. He did however dish out a game high nine assists.

In three summer league games thus far, Smith is averaging 13.5 points, 6.5 rebounds and 6.5 assists per game. He currently leads the league in assists per game. So much for this guy not being able to play in the NBA.

2014 Assist Leaders
Player Team APG
Russ Smith NOP 7.7
Langston Hall MIA 7.0
Lorenzo Brown LAC 6.0
Maalik Wayns WAS 5.5
Ray McCallum SAC 5.3

The Pistons Have Decided Not To Pick Up The Second Year Of Peyton Siva’s Contract

Kevin Liles | USA TODAY Sports

Kevin Liles | USA TODAY Sports

Despite having a strong finish to the 2013-14 regular season and putting together a few of solid performances in the NBA Summer League, the Detroit Pistons have decided to waive former Louisville star Peyton Siva.

After being drafted in the second round by Detroit last year, Siva signed a two year deal with the team with the second year being a team option. The Seattle native spent time in the NBDL during his rookie season, but finished the year on the official roster and played his best basketball down the stretch.

Unfortunately for Siva, a coaching change likely played the biggest role in the decision to waive him. Maurice Cheeks was the head coach and Joe Dumars was the president of basketball operations for Detroit when Siva was drafted, but both have since been let go by the team. Stan Van Gundy was hired in May and apparently he decided to go in a different director.

Detroit had until July 20th to make a decision on whether or not to guarantee his contract for the upcoming season. The writing appeared to be on the wall for Siva after the Pistons were able to sign D.J. Augustin to a two-year, $6 million deal on Sunday. Between Augustin, starting point guard Brandon Jennings, and 2014 second round selection Spencer Dinwiddie, Detroit clearly felt that they had the position well-handled.

Siva played well for Detroit in last week’s Orlando NBA Summer League, averaging 10 points and five assists, but unfortunately he went down with a hamstring injury that kept him out towards the end of the week.

I imagine he’ll get plenty of interest from other teams who are looking to add depth at the point guard position. Siva may not get a guaranteed contract, but I’d be surprised if he’s not invited to someone’s training camp and given a chance to make a roster.

Luke Hancock Making The Most Of His Opportunity With The Rockets

Pete Cautilli | The Cardinal Connect

Pete Cautilli | The Cardinal Connect

Russ Smith and Peyton Siva aren’t the only former Cardinals who are making the most of their NBA Summer League Appearances.

On Sunday afternoon, Luke Hancock put together a very solid performance for the Houston Rockets in the NBA’s Las Vegas Summer League.

In just 13-minutes, Hancock scored nine points on 3-of-6 shooting from behind the three point line.

The Rockets fell to the Heat 92-81, but Hancock’s three three pointers down the stretch helped Houston claw back into the game, but unfortunately they ran out of gas.

This is Hancock’s second summer league appearance of the week. He competed with the Orlando Magic in the NBA’s Orlando Summer League from July 5-11.

Unfortunately he played in just one of the Magic’s five games. Hancock played four minutes in a game on July, 7 and didn’t score a point.

It appears that he’ll have a better opportunity to showcase his skills with the Rockets and fortunately he’s already off to a good start.

Hancock was one of just two players who made more than two three pointers in yesterday’s game.

He’ll be back in action Sunday night at 8 PM EST.