Rumor Roundup: Cavs, Griffin, Bulls

Kevin Love and the Cavaliers open the Eastern Conference finals on Wednesday.

A look at the latest news, moves and views from around the world of pro hoops.

Per ESPN: “The Orlando Magic intend to offer their president of basketball operations position to Cleveland Cavaliers general manager David Griffin, multiple sources said.”

Per ESPN: “The Magic can engage Griffin in contract talks at the conclusion of the Cavs’ season, sources said.”

Per ESPN: “Griffin’s contract with Cleveland is up at the end of the season, and he and the team have not held meaningful discussions on an extension.” (Full report.)

Per Cleveland.com: “Because they acquired Kyle Korver in a trade, they can sign him to an expensive contract even though they are already over the salary cap. But, to your question, there hasn’t been any real talk of bringing Korver back (or not bringing him back), because general manager David Griffin doesn’t have a contract for next season. Both Griffin and owner Dan Gilbert need to decide if they want to continue working together — neither is automatic.” (Full report.)

Per Amico Hoops: “Larry Bird is expected to remain on as a consultant, but will certainly be courted by other franchises. But this is more than likely a permanent move into retirement, according to multiple league sources.” (Full report.)

Per Amico Hoops: “Also, this interesting tidbit from Yahoo Sports: ‘The Orlando Magic are searching for a president and general manager, and the search firm running the Magic’s process has been asking other league executives about Bird as a possible candidate, sources told The Vertical. For now, Cleveland Cavaliers GM David Griffin remains the top candidate in the Magic’s search, but Orlando hasn’t yet asked for permission to speak with Griffin, largely because of the Cavaliers’ playoff status, sources said.'” (Full report.)

Per Hoops Rumors: “The move feels like a surrender, assesses Gregg Doyel of The Indianapolis Star, who adds that someone else will be left to work out the complicated situation with Paul George.” (Full report.)

Per Hoops Rumors: “Bird has been trying to rebuild the Pacers into a serious contender in the East since 2014 and has a non-playoff season and two first-round ousters to show for it. According to Doyel, Bird has been convinced for more than a year that George will opt out after next season and leave in free agency.” (Full report.)

Per USA Today: “The Orlando Magic have serious interest in Hall of Famer and TNT analyst Kevin McHale for their team president position, according to two people with knowledge of the situation.”

Per USA Today: “Griffin’s candidacy appears to be playing a part in the methodical pace of the search, as he is not likely to speak with the Magic until the Cavaliers’ title pursuits are over – if at all.” (Full report.)

Cavs star LeBron James to reporters: “I just like the adversity of the road, Home cooking is great; love the home fans for 14 years. But I love playing out on the road more than I love playing at home. It’s just a weird thing. I love the adversity, I love the ‘Tonight is not the night’ LeBron slogans. I love the ‘You’re overrated’ and all those things. I like all that. I don’t know, man. It’s the bunker mentality of knowing it’s 15 guys plus the coaching staff and whoever there that’s traveled with us against the whole state and the whole city.” (Full report.)

Per the Chicago Sun-Times: “According to a front-office source, besides the normal exit interview with Jimmy Butler at the end of the season, the Bulls already have reached out to have a separate sit-down to discuss their plans and to assure Butler that they’re fully committed to him.”

Per the Chicago Sun-Times: “The source indicated that vice president of basketball operations John Paxson would attend, but it was unclear if general manager Gar Forman also would be in attendance.” (Full report.)

Per the Chicago Tribune: “But the fact Cameron Payne, Jerian Grant, Denzel Valentine and Michael Carter-Williams all have fallen out of the rotation isn’t a great sign moving forward. Payne, the target of the February trade sending Taj Gibson and Doug McDermott to the Thunder, landed on the inactive list again. Like Grant and Valentine, Payne is under contract for next season.”

Per the Chicago Tribune: “Carter-Williams is a restricted free agent, so the Bulls can match any offers he might get. He’s a long shot to return.” (Full report.)

Per the Atlanta Journal Constitution: “Dwight Howard was pretty good at the beginning. The Hawks center was nowhere to be found at the end. Again.”

Per the Atlanta Journal Constitution: “Howard had nine points and five rebounds in his 8:47 of playing time in the opening quarter. He forced two quick fouls on Wizards center Marcin Gortat.”

Per the Atlanta Journal Constitution: Howard finished the game with just two more rebounds. That’s it. He headed to the bench with 3:40 left in the third quarter and did not return.” (Full report.)

Per Amico Hoops: “Three of ESPN’s most popular and longest tenured NBA writers were let go Friday, as the network continues to purge its newsroom of talent in perhaps the most noted round of sports journalism layoffs to date.” (Full report.)

Per Amico Hoops: “Wojnarowski is likely bringing the majority of his team at The Vertical with him, and expected to have a major role when it comes to shaping ESPN’s online basketball coverage moving forward.” (Full report.)

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