Adrian Wojnarowski of The Vertical

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Adrian Wojnarowski is the NBA columnist for Yahoo! Sports. His book "The Miracle of St. Anthony: A Season with Coach Bob Hurley and Basketball's Most Improbable Dynasty"; was a New York Times best-seller. He is a 1991 graduate of St. Bonaventure University, where he considers Butler Gymnasium's rims to be the most giving in the game.

  • Rockets trade Thomas Robinson to Blazers, clearing room for Dwight Howard

    Hours before meeting with Dwight Howard, the Houston Rockets reached an agreement to trade Thomas Robinson to the Portland Trail Blazers and clear the necessary space to offer the star free-agent center a max contract, league sources told Yahoo! Sports.

    Traded to the Rockets midway through last season, Thomas Robinson is headed to Portland. (USA Today Sports)The Rockets can now present Howard with a four-year, $88 million contract in a late-night Sunday meeting in Los Angeles.

    The Rockets are the frontrunners to sign Howard, and unloading Robinson's contract is the final hurdle to create the space necessary to make the move.

    Portland will send the Rockets the draft rights to Kostas Papanikolau and Marko Todorovic and two future second-round picks, league sources said.

    The deal can't become official until the NBA's moratorium on free-agency signings ends on July 10.

    The trade sheds nearly $7 million off the Rockets' payroll over the next two seasons. Houston also waived two veteran players – Carlos Delfino and Aaron Brooks – earlier on Sunday to clear cap space.

    Robinson, the fifth overall pick

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  • Sources: Knicks dealing for Andrea Bargnani; Raptors get Steve Novak, Marcus Camby and picks

    The Toronto Raptors are finalizing an agreement on a trade to send former No. 1 overall pick Andrea Bargnani to the New York Knicks, league sources told Yahoo! Sports.Andrea Bargnani is headed to New York. (Getty Images)

    The Knicks will send their 2016 first-round pick to the Raptors, and a package that includes Marcus Camby and Steve Novak, league sources said.

    [Related: Full 2013 NBA free-agent list]

    The Knicks will also send two future second-round picks to Toronto, sources said.

    The Knicks and Raptors were unable to finalize the deal on Sunday night with the league office because of salary components that need to be tweaked, a league source said. The teams believe they'll make the necessary adjustment for approval on Monday.

    For new Raptors general manager Masai Ujiri, the deal will unload the two years, $22 million left on the contract of the underachieving 7-foot forward.

    Barganani was the first pick in the 2006 NBA draft, and has averaged 15 points and nearly five rebounds a game for his career.

    The New York Times first reported the

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  • Kobe Bryant to meet with Dwight Howard

    Los Angeles Lakers star Kobe Bryant plans to be part of the presentation on Tuesday to convince free-agent center Dwight Howard to re-sign with the franchise, a league source told Yahoo! Sports.

    Kobe Bryant and the Lakers will meet with Dwight Howard on Tuesday. (USA Today Sports)The Lakers are expected to make the final case to Howard in Los Angeles, letting Houston, Dallas, Golden State and Atlanta go before them. Bryant has offered to be a part of the contingent that will include the Buss family, general manager Mitch Kupchak and possibly coach Mike D'Antoni.

    Howard and Bryant have had a tepid relationship, but have stayed in touch in the offseason.

    Howard, 27, can sign a five-year, $117 million-plus contract extension to stay with the Lakers. He has been leaning toward the Houston Rockets, league sources told Yahoo! Sports, but no one engaged in the discussions dares ruling out his staying with the Lakers.

    Houston can sign Howard to a four-year, $88 million contract.

    Among Howard's comfort living in Los Angeles, his outside and marketing interests beyond basketball

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  • Dwight Howard spends eve of free agency at gaming championships; Rockets GM can't attend

    Dwight Howard played "Call of Duty" at the Major League Gaming world championships. (Special to Y! Sports)Houston Rockets general manager Daryl Morey belongs to the board of directors of Major League Gaming, and under most circumstances would've stopped over to the Anaheim Convention Center on Saturday night for the MLG's world championships.

    Only, NBA tampering rules wouldn't have allowed it on the eve of the free-agency period starting Sunday at midnight ET, because the target of Morey's California trip – star center Dwight Howard – happened to be playing "Call of Duty" against kids at the event.

    Morey had flown into Southern California on Saturday with the Rockets' traveling party to prepare to make their free-agent pitch to Howard late Sunday. Houston is competing with the Los Angeles Lakers and Dallas Mavericks to sign the All-Star center.

    Related coverage on Yahoo! Sports:
    Rockets loom as frontrunners for Dwight Howard
    Complete list of NBA free agents
    Chandler Parsons courting Dwight Howard

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  • Dwight Howard's free-agent courtship to begin with Rockets as frontrunners

    After two years of careful planning and preparation to make themselves irresistible to Dwight Howard, the Houston Rockets have emerged as the frontrunners to sign the free agent center and will make a formal presentation to him on Sunday night in Los Angeles, league sources told Yahoo! Sports.

    The Rockets, Atlanta Hawks, Dallas Mavericks, Golden State Warriors and Lakers will make presentations between Sunday's midnight ET start of free agency and Tuesday evening, sources told Y! Sports.

    Howard doesn't want this process to extend long beyond his final meetings on Tuesday and could have a decision before the end of the week, sources said.

    Dwight Howard might need less than a week to decide where he wants to sign. (Getty Images)"He wants to make a decision based on basketball more than anything else," one source with knowledge of Howard's thinking told Y! Sports.

    For this reason, Howard has been leaning toward the Rockets in recent weeks and considers them the only team that would instantly allow him to play for a championship contender, sources said. The Lakers aren't out of

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  • Brian Scalabrine in talks with Warriors for assistant coaching job

    The Golden State Warriors are discussing an assistant coaching job with popular ex-player Brian Scalabrine, league sources told Yahoo! Sports.

    Scalabrine met with Warriors coach Mark Jackson and team management last week, and conversations have continued in recent days, league sources said. Brian Scalabrine

    Golden State has lost two assistant coaches this offseason – Mike Malone to the Sacramento Kings as head coach, and Bob Beyer to the Charlotte Bobcats as an assistant.

    Scalabrine turned down a chance to join coach Tom Thibodeau's staff with the Chicago Bulls after playing his final NBA season in 2011-'12. After growing in television roles locally on Boston Celtics telecasts and nationally elsewhere, Scalabrine had begun to entertain the possibility of starting a coaching career.

    He has spent several weeks this spring working out draft prospects in Los Angeles for agent Arn Tellem.

    Scalabrine played 11 NBA seasons, including stops with the Nets, Celtics and Bulls.

    More NBA content from Yahoo! Sports

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  • Nets interested in signing free-agent center Jason Collins

    The Brooklyn Nets have been considering free-agent center Jason Collins, the first openly gay player in NBA history, for a return to the franchise, league sources told Yahoo! Sports.

    As the Nets bring Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce and Jason Terry to the franchise via trade, the Nets need proven, dependable role players available at the veteran's minimum price.

    Jason Collins played 32 games with the Celtics last season. (Getty Images)

    Nevertheless, the tweaking of the Celtics-Nets trade package Friday to now include Brooklyn guard MarShon Brooks instead of forward Reggie Evans does lessen the need for another physical, frontcourt player on the Nets' roster. Nets coach Jason Kidd has been an advocate of the possibility of acquiring Collins, but how aggressively the Nets pursue Collins, if ultimately at all, will hinge on how the roster continues to take shape, sources said.

    Collins, 34, has close relationships with Kidd and top assistant Lawrence Frank. They were together for seven successful seasons with the Nets when Frank was a coach, Kidd was the point guard

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  • Celtics trading Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce to Nets

    The Brooklyn Nets have reached an agreement in principle with the Boston Celtics to acquire future Hall of Famers Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce after Garnett agreed to waive his no-trade clause, league sources told Yahoo! Sports.

    Garnett waived his no-trade clause after the Nets agreed to fully guarantee the $12 million owed him for the 2014-15 season, the third year of his contract. Prior to the agreement, the Nets could have bought out Garnett for $6 million.

    The Nets have discussed a possible deal to land Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett. (USA Today Sports)

    Garnett also was swayed by the chance to join his close friend, Pierce, in Brooklyn where they could play for longtime rival Jason Kidd.

    The trade can't be made official by the NBA until July 10.

    The trade comes with a heavy cost for the Nets: They face a luxury-tax bill of nearly $80 million. Their payroll will be close to $100 million.

    The deal centers around a package that sends Gerald Wallace, Kris Joseph, the expiring deal of Kris Humphries and three future first-round picks (2014, '16 and '18) to the Celtics, sources told Y!

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  • Sixers trade Jrue Holiday to Pelicans for rights to Nerlens Noel

    Nerlens Noel is headed to Philadelphia. (Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports)The Philadelphia 76ers have acquired the rights to sixth overall pick Nerlens Noel in a trade that sends point guard Jrue Holiday to the New Orleans Pelicans, league sources told Yahoo! Sports.

    The Pelicans also will send a 2014 first-round pick to the Sixers in the trade. The Sixers received a second-round pick (No. 42 overall in Thursday's draft) from the Pelicans.

    Noel, a 7-foot center from Kentucky, had been a candidate to be selected No. 1 overall before slipping to sixth.

    Holiday, 23, averaged 17.7 points and eight assists this past season for the Pelicans.

    More NBA content on Yahoo! Sports
    Yahoo! NBA draft tracker
    Lakers turn to billboards to convince Dwight Howard to stay
    Gilbert Arenas arrested with truck full of illegal fireworks

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  • Larry Bird returning as Pacers president

    Larry Bird is returning to the Indiana Pacers to serve as the franchise's president of basketball operations.

    Larry Bird left the Pacers on June 27, 2012, to attend to some health concerns. (AP)The Pacers will welcome back Bird at a news conference at 10 a.m. ET Thursday – one year to the day after he resigned his position with the franchise.

    Bird coached the Pacers from 1997-2000 and returned to the franchise in 2003 as president. Bird was voted the NBA's Executive of the Year in 2012 after leading the Pacers' revival from the draft lottery to the Eastern Conference's elite. Bird stepped away at season's end and moved back to Florida to attend to some health issues but became eager to return to Indiana in order to complete the job in transforming the Pacers into an NBA champion.

    Bird's mentor with the Pacers, longtime president and general manager Donnie Walsh, replaced Bird a year ago with an understanding that the job would return to Bird should he desire it again.

    Kevin Pritchard will continue as the organization's general manager, ultimately answering to Bird. The

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