“I had a conversation with DeMar at summer league, and I really want to leave it at that,” Ujiri said Friday, according to ESPN.
“We spoke … I think maybe my mistake was talking about what we expected going forward from him. So, not necessarily talking about a trade but what I expect from him going forward, and I think that’s where the gap was.”
DeRozan has maintained that he was lied to by the organization as he met with team officials in Las Vegas during Summer League play and believed he would not be traded.
“In my job, I always have to assume we’re going forward with the team that I have” Ujiri said.
“If there was a miscommunication there, I do apologize to DeMar and his family and his representation. It’s not what I meant.”
Ujiri says that the opportunity to land Leonard was too good to pass up.
“When you have a chance to get a top-five player, which doesn’t come very often, I think you have to jump on it,” he said.
Ujiri also addressed reports that state Leonard has no interest in playing in Toronto.
“(Leonard) didn’t express a lack of interest to not play in Canada to me,” Ujiri said on Friday. “A lot of these things are everybody has their own opinion about everything. … I haven’t gotten that sense from Kawhi Leonard or his people, and I’m going to give him that chance when we meet face to face.”
“I’ve had conversations with Kawhi, with his agent, with his uncle and everything has gone well,” Ujiri said. “I look forward to meeting with them face to face, and that’s our responsibility … to figure it out and to make them as comfortable as possible. … I’m confident. I think we have a good game plan, and we’ll see how that goes.”
Pistons’ Andre Drummond Says Pairing with Blake Griffin ‘Nightmare’ for Teams
Detroit Pistons big man Andre Drummond is a big fan of playing alongside forward Blake Griffin and believes it gives the Pistons an edge over their opponents.
In fact, Drummond believes that he and Griffin pose a “nightmare” challenge for opposing teams.
“I think for me, my job is to make his game as easy as possible on the offensive end. When I get him open, he usually makes the right plays,” Drummond said, accordig to The Associated Press.
“It’s a nightmare for teams. You’ve got to really pick your poison, who you really want to get going, and it’s scary when we both get it going.”
Drummond is putting in a solid season, averaging 17.4 points and 15.0 rebounds per game this season.
Heat’s Dwyane Wade Reflect on Final All-Star Game
After making his final appearance at an NBA All-Star game as an active player, Miami Heat guard Dwyane Wade took time to reflect on the experience as he enters the final few months of his NBA playing career.
“Whatever my legacy is and whatever it will become, it’s what I’ve been building since anybody ever heard my name or before that,” said Wade, soon turning his attention to the remainder of the season, according to Ira Winderman of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel.
“So at the end of the day, when it’s over, I think that the respect that I’ve been getting from fans around the world, fans in arenas, the players that I’m playing against, that’s the thing that makes me fill my heart with joy. Because I just want a respect for what I bring to the table, and that’s in both on the court and off the court. And I’ve been getting that.”
Wade will be calling it a career at the end of the season.
“So I’ve just got to keep it going. I’m 37 years old, I’m a young man in life. I’ve got a long life ahead of me, and I’m destined to do other things that’s great. So see what that is.”
Celtics’ Jayson Tatum Addresses Trade Rumors
Ever since New Orleans’ Pelicans superstar Anthony Davis put in a trade demand rumors have been running non-stop about which teams, and which players, will be a part of his exit from New Orleans.
One player in particular, Boston Celtics’ star Jayson Tatum, has been rumored to be a main piece in a potential trade that would land Davis in Boston.
Tatum, isn’t concerned with the constant chatter.
“And my response is always the same; control what I can control, I don’t take it personal. I understood coming in that it is a business. They have to make the best decision for them, whatever that may be. Especially right now; I can’t control it.” Tatum said, according to NBC Sports’ A.Sherrod Blakely.
“You learn pretty quickly that when you are under contract, you don’t have too much say-so,” Tatum said.
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