Milwaukee Bucks Rumors

Bucks Sign Damien Inglis

August 26 at 6:03pm CDT By Chuck Myron

AUGUST 26TH, 6:03pm: The signing is official, the team announced.

AUGUST 20TH, 8:05pm: The Bucks have signed 31st overall pick Damien Inglis, tweets Eric Pincus of Basketball Insiders. The team has yet to make an official announcement, but the move took place Tuesday, as the RealGM transactions log shows. It’s a multiyear deal, according to RealGM. Inglis probably received a three-year deal worth a shade under $1MM this season and the minimum salary in the final two seasons if he’s like many of his peers from the top of the 2014 second round, including 36th overall pick and new Bucks teammate Johnny O’Bryant.

Inglis is a native of French Guiana who spent last season playing for Chorale Roanne in France. He had a decent chance to end up as a first-round pick, since he ranked 26th in Jonathan Givony’s DraftExpress prospect listings and 30th with Chad Ford of ESPN.com. The 6’8″ small forward is nonetheless a raw prospect, having averaged just 4.6 points and 3.6 rebounds in 15.3 minutes per game in France this year.

The signing creates a logjam of sorts in Milwaukee, particularly if Inglis’ contract is guaranteed, as is likely the case. The team already had 14 guaranteed deals, as our roster counts show, not including Kendall Marshall, who figures to be a part of the rotation on his minimum-salary pact after averaging 8.8 assists per game for the Lakers last season. The Bucks also renounced their rights to free agent Ramon Sessions, as Pincus and RealGM report, and while that doesn’t clear an additional roster spot, it’s a signal that the club is done with free agent signings this summer, save for perhaps a few training camp invitations.

Clippers Likely To Waive Delfino, Raduljica

August 26 at 5:49pm CDT By Eddie Scarito

The Clippers are likely to waive Carlos Delfino, whom they acquired earlier today, using the stretch provision, reports Sam Amick of USA Today. The other player that Los Angeles acquired in the Dudley trade, Miroslav Raduljica is also likely to be waived by the Clippers, notes Amick, suggesting that the team and Raduljica, who’s owed $1.5MM for this coming season, may reach a buyout deal.

The swap that was announced earlier today which sent Jared Dudley to the Bucks left the Clippers with just $649,228 to spend under the hard cap, according to the figures compiled by Eric Pincus of Basketball Insiders, which would leave only room for a prorated contract later in the season.

Delfino is owed $3.25MM for next season, and has a team option for 2015/16. By using the stretch provision prior to September 1st, the Clippers would be able to spread his salary for next season out evenly over the next five years, as well as his cap hit. This means Delfino would have to be waived by this coming Monday, otherwise this option would not be available to the team. By removing Delfino’s salary, the Clippers would then be able to add another player or two to their roster.

One strong possibility for the Clippers would be to add Chris Douglas-Roberts, reports Amick. The 27-year old shooting guard spent last season with the Hornets, appearing in 49 contests, averaging 6.9 PPG in 20.7 minutes per game. Douglas-Roberts could not be signed until Delfino was waived, notes Amick. Another player the Clippers could look to add would be Ekpe Udoh, who visited with Los Angeles earlier today.

Bucks Acquire Jared Dudley

August 26 at 4:11pm CDT By Chuck Myron

4:11pm: The deal is official, the Bucks announced. It’s Dudley and a 2017 first-rounder to the Bucks and Delfino, Raduljica and the Clippers’ own 2015 second-round pick, which Milwaukee acquired in a previous trade, going to the Clippers.

NBA: Los Angeles Clippers at Minnesota Timberwolves3:41pm: The 2017 first-round pick going from the Clippers to the Bucks will be lottery protected, a source indicates to Charles F. Gardner of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel (Twitter link).

3:07pm: Delfino is only expected to miss part of the coming season, as Wojnarowski writes in his full story after deleting the tweet that indicated Delfino would likely miss the entire season.

2:33pm: The first-rounder headed Milwaukee’s way is a protected 2017 selection, according to Marc Stein of ESPN.com (on Twitter).

2:20pm: The Clippers will also receive their own 2015 second-round pick that Milwaukee had acquired through a previous trade, reports Sam Amick of USA Today (Twitter link).

1:59pm: The Clippers are sending Jared Dudley to the Bucks, tweets Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports. Carlos Delfino, Miroslav Raduljica head to L.A. while the Clippers also send Milwaukee a future first-round pick, Wojnarowski adds in a second tweet. Delfino, who missed all of last season because of injury, is likely to be out all of this year, too, according to Wojnarowski, making this trade purely about unloading Dudley’s salary from the Clippers’ perspective (Twitter link). Dudley is set to make $4.25MM this season and has an early termination option for the final season of his contract in 2015/16, which is also for $4.25MM.

Delfino originally hurt his right foot while with the Rockets in the 2013 playoffs, and while he signed a three-year, $9.75MM contract last summer with Milwaukee, he’ll never have taken the floor for the club while on that deal. The final season is non-guaranteed, so given L.A.’s apparent motivation to offload salary in the deal, it appears there’s a strong chance that Delfino will end up never having played at all under his contract.

Raduljica will make $1.5MM this season, but his salary for slightly more than that in 2015/16 is non-guaranteed, so the Clippers can cut ties with both he and Delfino next summer and pocket the savings. There was no guarantee that Dudley would have opted in, but the deal gives them greater cost control.

The move is a net gain in salary of $500K for the Clippers this year, moving them less than $1MM beneath their hard cap. The Clippers will end up with 13 players as a result of the transaction, so they won’t have to sign anyone else to meet the regular season roster minimum. The deal will leave the team with $649,228 to spend under the hard cap, according to the figures compiled by Eric Pincus of Basketball Insiders, so that leaves only room for a prorated contract later in the season.

The Bucks had been carrying 15 guaranteed contracts plus two non-guaranteed deals, one of which is for Kendall Marshall, who’ll probably be part of the team’s rotation. So, the trade will allow the team to keep Marshall without having to unload a fully guaranteed contract.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

And-Ones: Drew, Antetokounmpo, D-League

August 25 at 10:33pm CDT By Cray Allred

Former Bucks coach Larry Drew was blindsided by his ouster from Milwaukee, telling Charles F. Gardner of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel he was taken aback by the process. New owners Marc Lasry and Wes Edens were already in discussions with Jason Kidd, who supplanted Drew on the bench, while he was participating in rookie Jabari Parker‘s introductory press conference.

“The whole Jabari thing, putting me in that position, I don’t think it was very professional. I wish it wouldn’t have happened that way, but it did,” said Drew, who is now an assistant with the Cavs. “It caught me in a position when I least expected it. But I know how these things work. I don’t have any hard feelings, any grudges against anybody.”

Here’s more from around the league:

  • Thanasis Antetokounmpo‘s agent tells Marc Berman of the New York Post that the forward turned down a two-year, $550K offer to play in Italy in order to accept the $25K salary he will receive with the Knicks‘ D-League affiliate. Agent Tim Lotsos says the sacrifice was made because his client is eager to prove himself as NBA-ready. “To my surprise, he passed on it,” said Lotsos. “He’s very ambitious and determined to make the NBA. I didn’t try to force him. I wanted him to make his own decision.”
  • A D-League expansion draft for returning player rights will take place on September 1, reports Gino Pilato of DLeagueDigest.com. The draft will supply the Knicks‘ new affiliate with a starting roster, and each existing team will protect up to 12 current D-League players that the Westchester Knicks can’t obtain.
  • In the same piece, Pilato does a mock selection draft, projecting which players he sees each D-League team protecting and which players wind up in Westchester.
  • Plenty of people believe rookie Cavs coach David Blatt will become one of the best coaches in the league, writes Joel Brigham of Basketball Insiders in his look at rising coaching names. Brigham views Mike Budenholzer, Steve Clifford, Dave Joerger, and Jeff Hornacek as fellow up-and-comers in the NBA ranks.
  • In a LeBron James-centric mailbag column, Ira Winderman of the Sun Sentinel asserts that it was James’ contract preferences that led to the Cavs receiving draft picks from Miami in 2010 through a sign-and-trade, and that it was also his contract desires that prevented the Heat from receiving any picks when he returned to Cleveland this summer.

Contract Details: Inglis, Heat, Jazz, Hamilton

August 24 at 10:54am CDT By Chuck Myron

The pace of signings is slow this time of year, but teams continue to add to their rosters. Eric Pincus reveals some previously unreported details about a handful of these signings within his latest updates to the salary pages at Basketball Insiders, so we’ll pass along the news here:

  • The Bucks are giving 31st overall pick Damien Inglis guaranteed salaries of $820K this season and $855K for 2015/16, both amounts that are more than the minimum, as Pincus notes (Twitter link). It’s a three-year deal in all that features a non-guaranteed season at the minimum salary in the contract’s final year. Milwaukee used part of its cap space to accommodate the signing.
  • Tyler Johnson‘s minimum salary with the Heat this season is guaranteed for $75K, while his minimum salary for next season is without a guarantee, according to Pincus. Reggie Williams is receiving a non-guaranteed minimum salary in his pact with the Heat this year, as Pincus also reveals.
  • The Jazz gave Dee Bost a $65K guarantee this season, while the other two years of his three-year contract for the minimum salary are non-guaranteed, Pincus reports. Pincus also notes that the team gave Jack Cooley a three-year deal for the minimum, though it remains unclear whether any of Cooley’s pay is guaranteed. Utah used cap space rather than the minimum-salary exception on Bost and Cooley, since the minimum-salary exception only allows for two-year deals.
  • The Raptors have the means to shell out more than the minimum salary, but they didn’t give Jordan Hamilton any more than that, as Pincus documents. Hamilton’s deal is reportedly partially guaranteed, but just how much he’s guaranteed remains unknown.
  • Darius Morris is on a one-year deal with the Blazers, Pincus shows.

Central Notes: Cavs, Bucks

August 20 at 8:29pm CDT By Cray Allred

August 23, the day an expected trade that will send Kevin Love to the Cavs can be executed, is drawing near. Here’s a look at the Central Division’s notes for tonight:

  • In a Q&A session with fans facilitated by David Pick of Basketball Insiders, Cavs coach David Blatt refrained from commenting on the fate of Andrew Wiggins or Love, but did answer plenty of other questions about Cleveland’s lineup. When asked if he felt like he had won the lottery with the return of LeBron James, Blatt said, “[GM] David Griffin has done a fabulous job building the team, and the ownership of Cleveland has proven their complete commitment to the state of Ohio and to the Cavaliers in terms of building a quality organization with a chance to achieve the maximum. I’m very lucky to be a part of that.”
  • Regarding the team’s lack of rim protection, Blatt said, “Right now, we’re hoping Brendan Haywood is going to make progress coming back from his foot injury, and if he does that’ll be a big plus for our team. As far as other roster decisions, our team is in the best of hands with David Griffin.”
  • A decision on the new arena that Bucks owners Marc Lasry and Wes Edens want city and state governments to partially subsidize will be stalled until at least after the November gubernatorial election, reports Don Walker of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Walker is also told that a public financing plan would not be up for consideration until the state legislature reconvenes in January of 2015.

And-Ones: Clippers, Diawara, Mavs, Cavs

August 20 at 12:00pm CDT By Chuck Myron

Interim Clippers CEO Dick Parsons will step down in a few weeks, as he tells the Fox Business Network, according to Arash Markazi of ESPNLosAngeles.com (Twitter link). The move is no surprise now that Steve Ballmer has officially taken over the franchise, since Parsons said in May shortly after the league installed him as a caretaker for the team that he had no plans of remaining with the club after its ownership situation was resolved. Parsons has been acting as a “proxy owner,” as he put it, with final authority over any decisions president of basketball operations Doc Rivers made. Here’s more from around the league:

  • Multiple NBA teams had interest in bringing Yakhouba Diawara back to the league this summer, but he indicated on his Twitter account late Tuesday that he’s signing with Pallacanestro Varese of Italy (hat tip to Sportando’s Emiliano Carchia). David Pick of Eurobasket.com confirms the news with a tweet of his own. Diawara worked out for the Raptors, Bucks and Nets over the past few months.
  • This season’s minimum salary in Ivan Johnson‘s two-year contract with the Mavs is guaranteed for only $25K, reports Eric Pincus of Basketball Insiders (Twitter link).
  • It appears as though the Cavs guaranteed $65K of the minimum salary for Alex Kirk this season, Pincus also tweets.

And-Ones: Parker, Heat, Roberts. Allen

August 17 at 12:13pm CDT By Eddie Scarito

Jabari Parker knows the history of second-overall pick busts in the NBA, and is determined not to be the next, writes Brett Pollakoff of NBC Sports.com. The Bucks rookie said, “There’s been a lot of second pick busts. I’m just trying not to be that bust. Everyday that I step on the court, I just remind myself that I have a long ways to go. If I want to be one of those guys in the first tier of the NBA, like a LeBron [James], like a Kobe [Bryant] , like a [Blake Griffin], then I have to have that mentality starting off from the ground, and work my way up.”

Here’s more from around the league:

    • The Cavs are optimistic about their chances to sign Ray Allen prior to the start of training camp, tweets Marc J. Spears of Yahoo! Sports.
    • With the NBA reportedly considering a change in the lottery system, Brian Schmitz of the Orlando Sentinel explains why such a move would be an overreaction from Adam Silver and company.
    • The Heat’s win total this season could be affected if any changes are made to the NBA Draft lottery system, writes Ira Winderman of the Sun Sentinel. If there is less of a reason for franchises to tank, then Miami couldn’t necessarily count on padding their record against the Sixers, Magic, and Bucks, opines Winderman.
    • The selection of Michele Roberts as NBPA head was a historic one, with Roberts becoming the first female to lead a professional sports union. In an interview with Andrew Keh of The New York Times, Roberts said she was all too aware that if she was selected, she would represent several hundred male athletes in the NBA; she would deal with league officials and agents who were nearly all men; and she would negotiate with team owners who were almost all men. To this, Roberts said, “My past is littered with the bones of men who were foolish enough to think I was someone they could sleep on.”
    • Kentucky freshman Karl-Anthony Towns will be a strong possibility to be the No. 1 overall pick in next year’s NBA Draft, writes Adam Zagoria of SNY.tv. DraftExpress currently has Towns ranked fourth behind Jahlil Okafor, Cliff Alexander and Emmanuel Mudiay.

Cray Allred contributed to this post.

Free Agent Stock Watch: Ramon Sessions

August 6 at 9:35pm CDT By Cray Allred

One of the most productive free agents who still hasn’t found a team this summer is Ramon Sessions. In fact, of the 30 point guards who scored at least 10 points per game while averaging over 4 assists, Sessions is the only player without a contract. Sessions wasn’t far off his career PER average of 16.7 last season, a number that ranks with many of the league’s better rotation players. Perhaps Sessions’ situation will look less bleak in the coming days, but at the moment there are not a lot of landing spots where Sessions could sign for at or above the $5MM annual salary he just earned on his (expired) two-year deal. As our own Chuck Myron detailed in today’s Ray Allen Stock Watch piece, the teams with much more than the veteran’s minimum to offer are dwindling.

Sessions’ skill set is an odd mix for today’s NBA. In four of his first five seasons in the league, Sessions averaged over 7 assists per-36 minutes, but that rate slipped well below 6 per-36 over his last two seasons. The point guard position is evolving from a pass-first mold, however, with unconventional scoring guards becoming more accepted. Sessions’ most glaring weakness is his poor three-point shooting, which stands at 31.1% over his career, and 28.2% last season. As the league moves away from mid-range shots to emphasize the three-pointer, teams are increasingly unenthusiastic about perimeter players with no long distance range. In fact, Charlotte traded away Sessions last season in order to bring in shooting specialist Gary Neal as the Hornets geared up for the 2014 playoffs.

One of Sessions’ greatest strengths does fit the advanced team-building strategies in today’s NBA, however. Sessions has an elite free throw rate. At 6.6 free throw attempts per-36 minutes, Sessions ranked 12th in the league last year, behind only Ty Lawson at the point guard position. Teams increasingly value trips to the charity stripe as one of the most efficient elements of a strong offense; if Sessions could convince teams he could put up even mildly below average shooting averages to go with his ability to draw fouls, I can’t imagine he’d still be unsigned today.

Charlotte trading the veteran to the Bucks blindsided Sessions, but he was still open to reuniting with the Hornets as his free agency approached this summer. The Hornets sent mixed signals as to their own interest in a reunion, but eventually signed veteran backup Brian Roberts along with Lance Stephenson, a combo guard capable of running the point to complement starter Kemba Walker. In any case, Charllote was just one of many teams that had the point guard on their radar as free agency began. One of those teams was the Bulls, but they have since re-signed Kirk Hinrich alongside newcomers Pau Gasol, Nikola Mirotic, and Doug McDermott. Considering Derrick Rose‘s return, it would be surprising if they even wanted Sessions at the minimum now, considering the cap ramifications.

Some of the teams with cap flexibility might not be interested in upgrading their point guard slot. The Bucks haven’t been reported as interested in bringing Sessions back, and have already added the cheaper Kendall Marshall to a backcourt that includes Brandon Knight and Nate Wolters. The Jazz have two young point guards in Trey Burke and Dante Exum, but appear comfortable letting the raw Exum grow alongside Burke, rather than developing behind a veteran like Sessions. The Sixers have the most money available, and the thinnest roster, but have done nothing to bring in solid talent this offseason via free agency.

The Pacers haven’t been named as a Sessions suitor, but stand as a potential match. The team is seeking offense after losing Stephenson to free agency and Paul George to injury, and that is definitely Sessions’ strength. They are also applying for the disabled players exception, which would allow them over $5MM in signing ability if granted. The Rockets are another team without a reported connection to Sessions, but could theoretically be a good match for his talents. After trading away Jeremy Lin, Houston was left with Patrick Beverley as their only proven commodity at point guard. Beverley is a much better defender than Sessions with more success behind the arc, but Sessions has a longer track record than the likes of Ish Smith or Isaiah Canaan, Houston’s current bench pieces behind Beverley. Houston also has the flexibility to sign Sessions for significantly more than the minimum.

The Allegiant Athletic Agency client will hope that his strengths will eventually outshine his weaknesses in the eyes of a front office with money to spend. Just two years ago, the point guard was confident enough in his market value to decline a player option of over $4.5MM, and wound up getting a raise. It remains to be seen if the market will provide such a soft cushion this time around.

And-Ones: Parker, Brewer, Melo

August 2 at 12:16pm CDT By Eddie Scarito

The minimum salaries for Khris Middleton and Draymond Green became fully guaranteed at the end of Friday when they remained on the rosters of the Bucks and Warriors, respectively, according to the salary data that Mark Deeks of ShamSports compiles.  Justin Hamilton of the Heat earned a partial guarantee of $408,241 when Miami kept him through Friday, while Cavs power forward Erik Murphy wound up with a partial guarantee of $100K.

Here’s more from around the league:

  • This has been a whirlwind offseason with numerous players changing teams. Jessica Camerato of Basketball Insiders looks at five players who will benefit most from their change of scenery.
  • Brazilian big man Fab Melo is returning home to sign with Paulistano of his native country, the team announced Friday (hat tip to Sportando). The Celtics selected Melo with the 22nd pick in 2012, but the seven footer only played six games in the NBA in 2012/13 and bounced around the D-League last season after failing the make the Mavs roster in training camp.
  • Former NBA player Darius Johnson-Odom has signed with Acqua Vitasnella Cantù of the Italian League, reports Emiliano Carchia of Sportando. Johnson-Odom appeared in three games for the Sixers as well as seeing stints in China and the NBA D-League last season.
  • Spurs GM R.C. Buford indicated that the team and newly-extended point guard Tony Parker had a mutual interest in an agreement, according to Jeff McDonald of the San Antonio Express-News (Twitter links here). “His play warranted the commitment of the organization,” Buford said. “He made a commitment to our organization, too, by doing this now and taking himself out of a free agency opportunity a year from now. It was important to him and us to capitalize off the momentum this year creates and not have to worry about it at a later date.”
  • The Timberwolves aren’t willing to move Corey Brewer in any deal involving Kevin Love, reports Jon Krawczynski of the Associated Press (Twitter link). Brewer is staying in Minnesota, writes Krawczynski.

Chuck Myron and Alex Lee contributed to this post.