NBA news roundup: Ryan Anderson's girlfriend found dead, Pekovic re-signs with Timberwolves

USA TODAY Sports

Ryan Anderson's girlfriend passed away Wednesday after an apparent suicide attempt, the Timberwolves locked up one of the best remaining free agents, Al Harrington joined the Wizards and more from around the NBA.

New Orleans Pelicans forward Ryan Anderson's girlfriend passed away Wednesday after an apparent suicide attempt, according to a statement from her family.

Anderson found Gia Allemand, 29, unconscious at her home on Monday. She was taken to the hospital and remained on life support until she was taken off on Wednesday.

Allemand had been a contestant on The Bachelor in 2010 and later appeared on Bachelor Pad on ABC. Anderson was reportedly by her side when she died.

Nikola Pekovic agrees to 5-year, $60 million deal with Timberwolves

The Minnesota Timberwolves have re-signed forward Nikola Pekovic to a five-year, $60 million deal. Minnesota president Flip Saunders confirmed the signing on Wednesday when he tweeted, "We have agreed to terms with Pek."

Pekovic has spent three years in the league, all with the Timberwolves, and his production has improved each season. His stats peaked in 2012-13 when he averaged 16.3 points and 8.8 rebounds per game. The center started in each of the 62 games that he played.

Bringing back Pekovic means the Timberwolves will retain one of the more menacing frontcourts in the league. The 27-year-old starts alongside power forward Kevin Love. Behind him, Pekovic will look to rookie Gorgui Dieng and the newly-signed Ronny Turiaf to back him up at center.

Wizards sign Al Harrington

Al Harrington signed with Washington on Wednesday, making the Wizards his seventh NBA franchise in 16 NBA seasons.

The veteran forward played just 10 games last season for the Orlando Magic as he was hampered by a right knee injury. He underwent surgery in April and battled a staph infection that he contracted shortly thereafter. Now, Harrington seems ready to give an experience boost to a young Washington team.

"To ALL the #Wizards Fans, I'd like to say Lets Get It!," he tweeted. "I'm really excited to Help this team Grow in the right Direction."

Harrington has averaged 13.7 points and 5.7 rebounds in a career that has spanned nearly 1,000 games.

Warrior's looking to fill void after Jarrett Jack's departure

The Golden State Warriors' identity surely lies with star guard Stephen Curry, but last year, backup point guard Jarrett Jack provided leadership off the court and production on the court that was easy to overlook.

Jack came off the bench to average 12.9 points and 5.6 assists per game in 2012-13 before signing with the Cleveland Cavaliers as a free agent this offseason. His departure leaves a gaping hole in the backcourt, one that Warriors blog Golden State of Mind fears will be tough to fill:

Andre Iguodala should help replace the veteran leadership void left by Jack and most importantly, some of the ball-handling abilities. But if there are 144 total minutes at the point guard, shooting guard and small forward position, and Curry, Thompson and Iguodala are expected to play about 32-34 minutes, that still leaves 40+ minutes to the bench players. Sure, Harrison Barnes will come off the bench but he could assume some of David Lee's minutes as well, along with Marreese Speights. With all that accounted for, I'd say about 20-28 minutes are up for grabs between Toney DouglasKent Bazemore and Nemanja Nedovic.

Between Douglas, Bazemore and Nedovic, Golden State just might be looking for someone to have a breakout year similar to the one Jack enjoyed.

Cavaliers the most improved NBA team, according to ESPN analyst

Behind No. 1 pick Anthony Bennett, a roll of the dice on Andrew Bynum and other high-potential moves, the Cleveland Cavaliers are the most improved team in the NBA, according to ESPN analyst Bradford Doolittle.

Doolittle notes how young the Cavs are and that they likely improved naturally, given the expected progression of young players such as Kyrie Irving, Dion Waiters and Tyler Zeller. Add new additions like Bennett, Bynum, rookie Sergey Karasev and backup point guard Jarrett Jack, and Cleveland fans can expect to see a much better team this coming season.

As Cavs blog Fear the Sword points out, Doolittle projects Cleveland to be 5.7 points per game better than it was last season. That would give the Cavaliers a positive overall point differential, and no team with a positive differential overall missed the playoffs last season.

More from SB Nation:

Brad Stevens sends letters to ex-Celtics

The key to the Warriors' hopes

Blazers president discusses Rose Garden's name change

Ziller: No guarantees Brown will last in Philly

Jimmy Butler, the Bulls' great hope

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