Around the NBA
So, center Theo Ratliff got a buyout from the Minnesota Timberwolves. Forward Antoine Walker didn't.
"I just want to play," Walker told the St. Paul Pioneer Press. "Obviously, they're rebuilding, and obviously I'm not in the future plans, so I felt like maybe there was an opportunity for me to leave. They wanted money back that I wasn't willing to give back. It didn't work out that way. We'll just have to play it out, six weeks, and then we'll see what happens in the summer."
Walker said Minnesota low-balled him, offering a buyout he described as unreasonable and "ridiculous, actually."
He's making $8.5 million this season and is on the books for $9.3 million next season. Walker said he doesn't want a buyout at this point. Players must be waived by March 1 in order to be eligible for another team's playoff roster.
He called this a "terrible situation" and a "wasted year." Now he has to wait until the summer and hope the Timberwolves trade him. With an expiring contract, he should be attractive.
"I'm assuming they're going to do something to move me on," Walker told the Pioneer Press. "I'm just upset. I didn't come in here wanting to get out. I came in here wanting to play."
NEW JERSEY: It didn't take long for point guard Devin Harris to supplant Marcus Williams as the starter. Even Williams expected it.
"Devin has been doing great for us," Williams told the Bergen County (N.J.) Record. "I don't see why he wouldn't be
Way to fight for it.
UTAH: Jazz forward Andrei Kirilenko is on pace to set career highs in field goal percentage (49.8) and 3-point field goal percentage (37.6). Last season, he shot 47.1 percent from the field and 21.3 percent from behind the arc.
The reason for the improvement? He's been working with Jazz legend Jeff Hornacek, Utah's part-time shooting coach.
Hornacek working with Kirilenko makes sense. But working with sharp-shooting forward Kyle Korver?
"He loves to go out there and shoot," Hornacek told the Salt Lake Tribune. "That is the first thing he said when he got here (from Philadelphia in a Dec. 29 trade), 'Hey, shoot with me.' Every time I'm here -- before and after practice -- he wants to shoot."
Hornacek said he's an inferior shooter to Korver. During a drill a few weeks ago, Korver blew Hornacek away by making 31 of 34 3-pointers.
"I was like, 'Holy crap,'" Hornacek, a career 40.3 percent shooter from 3-point range, told the Tribune. "He can light it up."