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Spurs extend F Aldridge 3 years, $72M

(Photo by Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE via Getty Images)

(TSX / STATS) -- Five-time All-Star forward LaMarcus Aldridge agreed to terms on a three-year, $72.3 million contract extension with the San Antonio Spurs, multiple outlets reported on Monday.

The deal will keep Aldridge under contract with the Spurs through the 2020-21 season.

Aldridge will opt into the $22.3 million player option on his 2018-19 contract, and the extension's new terms will start with the 2019-20 season. The 32-year-old Dallas native is set to make $21.4 million in the 2016-17 season.

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Nuggets to sign Jefferson, waive Nelson

(TSX / STATS) -- The Denver Nuggets will sign forward Richard Jefferson and release veteran guard Jameer Nelson.

ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski reported late Monday that Jefferson and the Nuggets had agreed on a one-year, $2.3 million contract. The 37-year-old Jefferson, who spent the past two seasons with the Cleveland Cavaliers, will join a young nucleus of rising stars that include center Nikola Jokic and guard Gary Harris in Mile High City.

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Celtics F Morris to miss couple of weeks

(TSX / STATS) -- Boston Celtics forward Marcus Morris will miss Tuesday's season opener against the Cleveland Cavaliers due to right knee soreness, Boston coach Brad Stevens said on Sunday.

Morris will miss at least the first couple weeks of the regular season, according to Stevens. He played just 11 minutes in the preseason due to the knee woes and because he was away on trial in Phoenix for aggravated assault. He was acquitted.

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76ers PG Fultz to open season as reserve

(TSX / STATS) -- Philadelphia 76ers rookie guard Markelle Fultz, the No. 1 overall pick in June's NBA draft, will open the season as a reserve, coach Brett Brown revealed Sunday.

The 76ers open the season Wednesday against the Washington Wizards and the star backcourt combo of John Wall and Bradley Beal and that was one factor in the decision. Another is that Fultz played in just two preseason games after battling shoulder and knee ailments.

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Wolves exercise options on Towns, Jones

(TSX / STATS) -- The Minnesota Timberwolves exercised the fourth-year options on center Karl-Anthony Towns and guard Tyus Jones, the team announced Sunday.

Towns, the top overall pick in the 2015 draft, averaged 25.1 points and 12.3 rebounds while starting all 82 games for the second straight season in 2016-17.

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Pistons pick up option on F Johnson

(TSX / STATS) -- The Detroit Pistons exercised team options on forwards Stanley Johnson and Henry Ellenson for the 2018-19 season, the team announced Sunday.

Johnson, in his third season, has averaged 6.2 points, 3.3 rebounds, 1.5 assists, 0.7 steals and 20.4 minutes in 150 NBA games, including seven starts. He was the No. 8 overall pick by the Pistons in the 2015 draft.

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Four teams could challenge Warriors

(TSX / STATS) -- Ghidorah took down Godzilla, the Great Depression crumpled Wall Street, and Buster Douglas put Mike Tyson on his tush, so there must be a team that can challenge the Golden State Warriors for the NBA championship this season, right?

There are four legitimate contenders, in fact, to the throne on which the Warriors perched last June after beating the Cleveland Cavaliers in five games in the NBA Finals.

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Blazers G McCollum suspended for opener

(TSX / STATS) -- Portland Trail Blazers star guard CJ McCollum has been suspended for the regular-season opener after leaving the bench during an altercation in Wednesday's preseason game, the league announced Saturday.

McCollum, 26, was given a one-game ban for the incident that occurred with 9:33 remaining in the fourth quarter of Portland's 113-104 preseason win against the Phoenix Suns at Talking Stick Resort Arena.

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Spurs' Leonard won't be ready for opener

(TSX / STATS) -- San Antonio Spurs star Kawhi Leonard is expected to miss Wednesday's season opener against the Minnesota Timberwolves as he continues recovering from a left quadriceps injury.

Before Friday's preseason game against the Houston Rockets, Spurs coach Gregg Popovich told reporters Leonard will not be available for the opener.

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Heat swingman McGruder out 3-6 months

(TSX / STATS) -- Miami Heat swingman Rodney McGruder is expected to miss three to six months due to a stress fracture in his lower left leg, according to multiple reports.

McGruder is slated to undergo surgery next week.

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