NBA News Roundup: Draymond Green gets vocal on athletes turning into businessmen, lottery picks shine in Summer League debut, and more

The NBA offseason promises to be quite exciting. Some big names like Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving have hit the trade market.

Durant, in particular, has come under scrutiny for forcing his exit from the Brooklyn Nets to have a better chance at winning a championship. According to reports, he wants to play with suitors like the Phoenix Suns or the Miami Heat.

Draymond Green has thrown his support behind his former teammate, suggesting he was just making a business decision. Green pointed out that athletes are more than basketball players, and it’s fair of Durant to ask for a move.

The Summer League got off to a great start. Thursday’s edition featured lottery picks like Paolo Banchero, Jabari Smith Jr., Jaden Ivey and more taking center stage. These players shone in their debuts for their respective franchises.

Here is the latest buzz around the NBA as of July 8, 2022.

Draymond Green thinks people have to accept that athletes are now businessmen

Golden State Warriors Victory Parade & Rally
Golden State Warriors Victory Parade and Rally

Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green has defended Kevin Durant for asking for a trade to the Brooklyn Nets. KD is facing harsh criticism for leaving the Nets without leading them to a championship win.

Green, however, viewed Durant’s decision as a business decision. During the latest episode of his podcast, ‘The Draymond Green Show,’ the former DPOY said people don’t want to accept that athletes have turned into businessmen.

Here’s what Draymond said (via Clutch Points):

“People can’t accept the fact that athletes are now businessmen and don’t just play basketball anymore.”

He added:

“To start calling someone weak and running away from challenges…it’s disconcerting to me. Because this man (Kevin Durant) has worked his whole life to be in this position where he’s in control of where he goes next. “

“People can’t accept the fact that athletes are now businessmen and don’t just play basketball anymore.” Draymond Green on Kevin Durant making the best “business” decision for his career 🔥

Several lottery picks shine in their Summer League debuts

NBA Summer League 2022 - Houston Rockets vs. Orlando Magic
NBA Summer League 2022 – Houston Rockets vs. Orlando Magic

Thursday’s highly anticipated NBA Summer League games have taken place. Rookies like Paolo Banchero, Jabari Smith Jr. and Jaden Ivey, among others, got to show off their skills.

Banchero and Smith locked horns during the Magic vs Rockets game. The former proved to be the best player of the night, proving to his detractors that he deserved to be No. 1 overall in the draft against Jabari Smith Jr.

Paolo Banchero had 17 points, four rebounds and six assists, while Smith had ten points, seven rebounds and three assists.

Paolo Banchero and Jabari Smith’s Summer League opener is in the books:Banchero: 17 PTS | 6 ASD | 4 REBSsmith: 10 PTS | 7 RECs | 3 ASTJust the start for young stars 🌟 @brhoops

Meanwhile, Jaden Ivey and Jalen Duren went to court for the Pistons against the Trail Blazers. Ivey had 20 points, six rebounds and six assists, while Duren was down nine points and recorded two blocks.

Damian Lillard and DeMar DeRozan among the stars present at the Summer League

Orlando Magic vs. Portland Trail Blazers
Orlando Magic vs. Portland Trail Blazers

NBA players continued the trend of showing up to Summer League games to show their support for their young teammates. Stars like Damian Lillard, John Wall, DeMar DeRozan and Kyle Kuzma were among the notable players who showed up in Las Vegas on Thursday.

It was an entertaining day as several lottery choices were in action. It’s safe to say that the talent and level of play on display earned the veteran NBA stars the trip to Las Vegas.

Rudy Gobert thinks he can lead the Timberwolves to the NBA Finals

Dallas Mavericks vs. Utah Jazz - Game 4
Dallas Mavericks vs. Utah Jazz – Game 4

The Minnesota Timberwolves landed three-time DPOY Rudy Gobert via a blockbuster trade this offseason. It wasn’t until last season that the Timberwolves returned to the playoffs. They’re not just aiming to become permanent playoff contenders. Instead, they’re looking to give the Western Conference heavyweights a hard time.

Gobert sounded positive during his introductory press conference. The three-time All-Star hopes to play a bigger role on the T’Wolves. He also aims to help the team reach the final. Minnesota already has Karl-Anthony Towns in its ranks, so adding Gobert seemed like a questionable move.

Rudy Gobert: “The goal is to win a championship and I came here for that. I didn’t come here just to be a good team. I came to try to take this team to the final and achieve that. “(via @DaneMooreNBA)

However, KAT has become an effective spacer on the ground, so placing him in the power forward position could give them the advantage of playing a solid defensive formation with Gobert at the five.

Skip Bayless says Kevin Durant is a disciple at heart, not a leader

Boston Celtics vs. Brooklyn Nets - Game 4 of the 2022 NBA Playoffs
Boston Celtics vs. Brooklyn Nets – Game 4 of the 2022 NBA Playoffs

Veteran NBA analyst Skip Bayless has been Kevin Durant’s biggest fan over the years. However, in the latest episode of her podcast, Bayless slammed the Brooklyn Nets star. Durant has demanded a trade and is looking to play elsewhere to bolster his hopes of winning his third ring.

Several critics called out Durant for leaving Brooklyn without winning them a title. Many again questioned his leadership abilities. Bayless also seems to have jumped on this bandwagon. Here’s what the Fox Sports analyst had to say about it:

“Kevin Durant is the most bewildering mix of dominant and weak I’ve ever observed or encountered up close,” Bayless said. “He’s a follower at heart, not a leader, but he led Golden State to back-to-back championships they wouldn’t have won without him. He led our Olympic team last summer. He led them. led to gold. There’s no way they win without him.

“His mere presence. When in doubt, when in trouble, give the ball to Kevin.”

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This upcoming season will definitely be interesting. Will Durant be traded to one of his favorite teams? And if he does, will he lead them to a championship?

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