Around the Atlantic: Ainge says Celtics won't tank

slideshow-071513-celtics-frontoffice-uspresswire.jpg

Around the Atlantic: Ainge says Celtics won't tank

WALTHAM, Mass. -- It was the first thing Celtics general manager Danny Ainge told Keith Bogans and Kris Humphries when they arrived in Boston: We're not tanking this season.

Ainge wanted to reassure the former Brooklyn Nets who were acquired in the deal that sent Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce to Brooklyn. The deal followed the trade of coach Doc Rivers to Los Angeles, which kicked off the rebuilding process for the team that won the 2008 championship and returned to the NBA finals two years later.

Bogans and Humphries met reporters at the Celtics' practice facility on Monday along with MarShon Brooks.

Gerald Wallace was also acquired in the deal, but couldn't make the news conference.

Also Monday, the Celtics waived forward Kris Joseph, who was originally drafted by Boston and re-acquired in the trade with the Nets (see full story).

Knicks: J.R. Smith out 3-4 months
NEW YORK -- Knicks guard J.R. Smith has had patella tendon surgery and arthroscopy on his left knee that likely will keep him from joining the Knicks when they open training camp in late September.

The team said Smith will need 12-16 weeks to recover from the operation performed Tuesday by Dr. Answorth Allen at the Hospital for Special Surgery. The team said the injuries were chronic, with the arthroscopy repairing a tear in the lateral meniscus.

Smith, who won the Sixth Man of the Year award, helped shoot the Knicks into the playoffs before struggling in the postseason. The New Jersey product worked out a deal to stay with the Knicks that will pay him about $25 million over four years.

He averaged 18.1 points during the regular season, second on the team behind Carmelo Anthony (see full story).

Ben Simmons, Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot headline Sixers' summer league roster

Ben Simmons, Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot headline Sixers' summer league roster

The Sixers set their roster for the upcoming summer leagues in Utah and Las Vegas. The squad is compiled of incoming rookies, returning roster players and free agents. 

First overall pick Ben Simmons will headline the roster. Twenty-fourth pick Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot will also play for the Sixers. Twenty-sixth pick Furkan Korkmaz is not going to participate. 

T.J. McConnell, Richaun Holmes and Christian Wood, who played for the Sixers last season, will play. The only other player with NBA experience is James Nunnally. He played for the Sixers and Hawks during the 2013-14 season.

The roster is rounded out by Bryon Allen, Javon McCrea, Alex Caruso, Maodo Lo, James Webb III, Kwame Vaughn, Levi Randolph, Shawn Long and Tomasz Gielo. Caruso, Gielo, Lo, Long, and Webb III worked out for the Sixers before the draft. 

The Sixers will begin summer league action on July 4 in Utah against the Celtics. 

Assistant coaches Billy Lange will coach the Utah squad and Lloyd Pierce will coach in Las Vegas. 

A complete list:

Bryon Allen, Guard

Alex Caruso, Guard

Tomasz Gielo, Forward

Richaun Holmes, Forward

Maodo Lo, Guard

Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot, Guard

Javon McCrea, Forward

T.J. McConnell, Guard

James Nunnally, Forward

Shawn Long, Forward

Levi Randolph, Guard

Ben Simmons, Forward

Kwame Vaughn, Guard

James Webb III, Forward

Christian Wood, Forward

Source: Sixers to sign veteran point guard Jerryd Bayless

Source: Sixers to sign veteran point guard Jerryd Bayless

The Sixers have been in need of a veteran point guard, and it looks like they have found one on the first day of free agency.

A league source confirmed the Sixers have reached a deal to sign guard Jerryd Bayless. According to the Associated Press, the deal is worth $27 million over three years.  

Bayless, 27, is entering his ninth NBA season. Last season, he played for the Milwaukee Bucks, averaging 10.4 points, 3.1 assists and 2.7 rebounds in 28.9 minutes per game. Bayless shot 42.3 percent from the field and a career-high 43.7 percent from three. He ranked fifth in the NBA in three-point shooting percentage last season.

The point guard role is unique for the Sixers. First overall pick Ben Simmons can play point-forward. While the Sixers will start him out at the four spot, eventually he will assume some point guard responsibilities as he develops in the NBA. Bayless is a good fit for this situation because he doesn't need to dominate the ball. He also gives the Sixers versatility in the backcourt with his ability to shoot. 

The Sixers have struggled to find consistency at this position. Last season, they went through a pool of point guards before trading for Ish Smith in December. That acquisition wasn’t meant as a long-term solution, and Smith reportedly agreed to a three-year deal with the Pistons on Friday (see story).

The Sixers will be Bayless' seventh team. He previously played for the Trail Blazers, Pelicans, Raptors, Grizzlies, Celtics and Bucks. Bayless was the 11th overall pick in the 2008 draft.

When Bayless played in Toronto in 2010-11 and 2011-12, Sixers president of basketball operations Bryan Colangelo was the Raptors' president and general manager. This is Colangelo's first free-agent signing with the Sixers. 

Source: Sixers to hire former head coach Jim O'Brien as assistant

us-obrien.png
AP

Source: Sixers to hire former head coach Jim O'Brien as assistant

The Sixers are going to hire former head coach Jim O'Brien as an assistant coach on Brett Brown's staff, a league source confirmed to CSNPhilly.com's Jessica Camerato. 

FOX29's Howard Eskin was the first to report the hire. 

O'Brien, 64, was the Sixers' head coach back in 2004-05, when he led the team to a 43-39 record. He was the Celtics' head coach from 2000-2004 and the Pacers' head coach from 2007-2011. In his nine years as an NBA head coach, he has a 303-327 record. 

O'Brien, who is from Philadelphia and went to Roman Catholic, last coached in the NBA as an assistant with the Dallas Mavericks in 2012-13.