After a very quiet week in Clips Nation, two rumors involving the team began circulating this afternoon.
A source close to the situation tells RealGM's Alex Kennedy that the Los Angeles Clippers extended a contract offer to point guard Carlos Arroyo on Thursday.
Arroyo's last stint in the NBA was with the Orlando Magic. He averaged 6.9 points and 3.5 assists per game in 2007.
Last season, Arroyo led Maccabi Tel Aviv to an Israeli Premier League Championship and was named Finals MVP.
He would be the fourth point guard on Los Angeles' roster, which would suggest that they're no longer pursuing restricted free agent Ramon Sessions.
Notice the wording; this is not conjecture, it's not talking about intent. It says they extended an offer. A simple, declarative sentence.
Only problem is, Eric Pincus declared it to be bogus about an hour later on his Twitter feed:
I've been told by rock solid source that the Clippers did NOT make an offer to Arroyo - and aren't planning to
The minor detail that no other agency had reported this supposed contract offer was a bit of a red flag also. I'm going with Pincus on this one - no deal on Arroyo.
Which is a little too bad. I've always liked Arroyo, and he knows how to run a team. His problem, it seems to me, is that he's best when he's the indisputed leader on the floor, as he is when he's playing for Puerto Rico in International competitions. Unfortunately, in the NBA his talent level doesn't quite match his attitude. One common attribute of truly great point guards is that they can be real pricks - think John Stockton, Chris Paul. They'll do whatever it takes to win, and they'll get in their teammates' faces if something is wrong. That works great when you're John Stockton or Chris Paul - or even when you're Carlos Arroyo and your bossing Larry Ayuso around. It works less well when you're dealing with Rashard Lewis.
In that sense, it's probably best that the Clippers don't in fact seem to be making a run at Arroyo. He's not cut out to be third string, and he has worn out welcomes in a couple of NBA towns. The last thing you want when you're filling out the last few roster spots is someone causing trouble.
A few hours after the Arroyo rumor came and went, Gery Woelfel of the Racine Journal Times put another Sessions story out there. Suddenly, there is a new suitor on the season - the Timberwolves! There's a certain logic to it - you're
Herb David Kahn, you've been trying to get Ricky Rubio to come to the states, and when you find out for sure he's signing with FC Barcelona, you look up and the three point guards on your roster are Jonny Flynn, Bobby Brown and Chucky Atkins. (For one thing, don't you want at least one point guard who doesn't have a kindergartner's name? Maybe we can call him Charles Atkins and it will seem better. Can you imagine if Rubio HAD come over? Jonny, Ricky, Bobby and Chucky? Are you kidding me? When's nap time?)
But as with all things Sessions, I'll believe it when I see it. It would seem ill-advised to say the least for the Wolves to offer Sessions more than two seasons with Rubio having an affordable buyout in 2011 - do they want a free agent and two lottery picks at the same position two seasons from now? But with only $3.7M of their MLE left, that seems like a pretty puny contract - it seems like the Clippers should have already offered something in that ball park. So I'm taking this report with my usual grain of salt, the one I have around for anything related to Ramon Sessions.
Taken together, these two reports would have gone a long way to answering some lingering questions of the Clippers off-season. Will they sign Sessions? (No.) What will they do with the last roster spot? (Arroyo.) It would be a relief to feel like the roster is set. Unfortunately, those questions weren't answered after all.
UPDATE: ESPN.com is reporting that Sessions has indeed signed with the Timberwolves (hat tip to Citizen Qlippers in the FanShots), for 4/$16M. So that portion is at least settled.