Chris Babb‘s 10-day contract ends on Monday, but the Celtics are high on him, writes Mark Murphy of the Boston Herald. Coach Brad Stevens said, “He’s a perfect fit for what we need as far as, he’s not going to play 38 minutes a game — he’s going to come in, get open shots, hopefully knock those open shots down, play off of other people, and then be a feisty defender for us. He really is an outstanding defender for a young guy.” There has been no official word on if the Celtics plan to re-sign Babb.
More from around the east:
- The Cavs have assigned Arinze Onuaku to the Canton Charge of the NBA D-League, tweets Mary Schmitt Boyer of The Plain Dealer. Onuaku hasn’t scored in 2 appearances for the Cavs and was re-signed for a second 10-day contract on Wednesday.
- The Cavs were planning on using the ceremony to retire Zydrunas Ilgauskas‘ jersey as one means to recruit LeBron James back to Cleveland, writes Brian Windhorst of ESPN.com. But what little chance the team had to that possibility might have ended with the firing of former GM Chris Grant. Grant was one of the team executives who had the best relationship with James, according to Windhorst.
- Mitch Lawrence of the New York Daily News also weighs in on how unlikely the chances are that James returns to Cleveland this summer. The team’s lack of a proven winner in the front office is the main deterrent to attracting James, writes Lawrence.
- Michael Lee of The Washington Post takes a look at how the Wizards trade for Andre Miller is working out for him and for the team. So far, the pairing is paying dividends for both, opines Lee. The Wizards offer Miller a clean slate and a playoff opportunity, and Miller gives the team a proven veteran.
SATURDAY, 11:57am: The Wizards have officially signed Gooden to another 10-day contract per a team release.
FRIDAY, 11:39am: Gooden confirms he’d accept the offer of another 10-day contract, which the Wizards are planning to make, Michael notes (Twitter link).
THURSDAY, 3:51pm: Gooden will indeed stick around on another 10-day deal, reports J. Michael of CSNWashington.com.
3:35pm: The Wizards are likely to re-sign Drew Gooden to another 10-day contract, a source tells Michael Lee of The Washington Post. His first deal is set to expire at the end of Friday night. The team brought the Dan Fegan client aboard late last month to offset an injury to Nene that will keep him out for at least the next three weeks.
The 32-year-old went scoreless in his first two appearances but dropped 12 points on six-for-seven shooting in 19 minutes against the Jazz on Wednesday night. Gooden saw significant playing time in both halves, signaling that the Wizards see him as a potential rotation piece, at least for the time being. Washington has 14 players on guaranteed contracts, meaning Gooden occupies the team’s last open spot as it jockeys for playoff position in the Eastern Conference.
The former Kansas Jayhawk spent much of 2013/14 out of the NBA after the Bucks put him on amnesty waivers over the summer. Gooden balked at joining the Wizards when they traded for him in 2010, prompting the team to flip him in another trade four days later, but even with GM Ernie Grunfeld, who swung those deals, still in place, the two sides agreed to a reunion this year.
While the NBA’s trade deadline passed over two weeks ago, the D-League’s window for trading players between teams closed today. While deals between D-League teams don’t affect NBA player rights, they can still have an impact on which NBA teams and development staffs get the closest look at prospects at that level. Here are some notes from the D-League, including today’s deadline deals:
- The Timberwolves are looking at owning their own D-League team, a source tells Darren Wolfson of 1500 ESPN Twin Cities (Twitter link). Wolfson says the Iowa Energy, who currently serve as an affiliate for the Timberwolves, Nuggets, Bulls, Pelicans, and Wizards, are open to a singular partnership with Minnesota.
- Sources tell Gino Pilato of D-League Digest that a multi-team trade sent William Buford to the Canton Charge, Vander Blue to the Idaho Stampede, and Richard Howell‘s returning player rights for next year to the Santa Cruz Warriors, among other D-League draft considerations.
- In the same post, Pilato passes along a trade sending Santa Cruz’s Dominic McGuire to the Tulsa 66ers in exchange for Dominic Sutton‘s returning player rights.
- Pilato reports one final deal between the Charge and the Delaware 87ers. Kyrylo Fesenko was sent to Canton in a trade that also saw the teams swap second round draft picks.
The Blazers are ending their one-to-one affiliation with the D-League’s Idaho Stampede and will share an affiliate with other NBA teams next season, reports Joe Freeman of the Oregonian. GM Neil Olshey prefers to let Portland’s assistant coaches develop talent rather than farm the job out, as Freeman explains.
More D-League news:
- The Mavs have assigned Jae Crowder, Bernard James and Shane Larkin to the D-League, and they’ve recalled Ricky Ledo, the team announced. It’ll be a one-game stint for the trio of assignees, notes Marc Stein of ESPN.com, who first reported the moves (Twitter links).
- Xavier Henry will see those three Mavs tonight when the affiliates for Dallas and the Lakers meet up, since the Lakers have sent Henry to the D-League, the team announced. It’s a rehab assignment for Henry, who’s been out since December 29th, tweets Mike Trudell of Lakers.com.
- The Wizards Otto Porter had been mentioned as a candidate to head to the D-League, but that looks less likely to happen now, writes J. Michael of CSNWashington.com. Porter is needed for depth in case Martell Webster or Trevor Ariza suffer an illness or an injury. The team might also resist sending him down as not to damage his confidence, opines Michael.
- Dakota Schmidt of SB Nation profiles Sioux Falls 7-footer Justin Hamilton, and thinks that he is the most talented big man still available to make the jump to the NBA. The former second-round pick out of LSU has developed quite the offensive arsenal and could be the next player to land a 10-day contract, opines Schmidt.
Chuck Myron contributed to this post.
Derrick Rose has begun running for the first time since tearing a meniscus earlier this year, according to a note from the Associated Press on NBA.com. Despite the good news, Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau again reiterated that Rose will remain out for the rest of the season. Here’s more from the East:
- Thibodeau says that it’s possible the Bulls could add a veteran from the buyout market, he tells Nick Friedell of ESPN Chicago: “We could. I know [GM Gar Forman] and [executive VP] John [Paxson] are looking at the market and watching how it shapes up. Again, if something is a good fit for us and we think can help then we may take a shot at it.”
- Drew Gooden is ready to contribute in his second stint with the Wizards, he tells J. Michael of CSNWashington.com. “I’ve been spectating. I’m thirsty. I’m hungry. Definitely there’s a reset button that’s been hit.” Gooden is more enthusiastic about his time in Washington this time around than last, when the team struggled following the Gilbert Arenas locker-room gun incident. The Wizards appealed to him because of their commitment to winning. “When I first came in it seemed like the whole league was eager to win a championship. It wasn’t really realistic but they made those moves and those efforts to win. I see a handful of teams doing that now and I believe the Washington Wizards is one that wants to win. That’s why they added me for depth going into the playoffs.”
- The Raptors have a looming decision on whether to sign breakout point guard Kyle Lowry to a lucrative deal when he becomes an unrestricted free agent this summer, but the decisions don’t end there, writes Eric Koreen of The National Post. Coach Dwane Casey‘s contract also expires at the end of the year, and he has also performed above expectations in guiding the Raptors to the upper echelon of the Eastern Conference. GM Masai Ujiri isn’t one to reveal which way he’s leaning, but this doesn’t faze Casey. “I promise you, I don’t even think about that,” Casey said. “That’s one thing that I can’t control. The only thing I can control is preparing this team each and every game.”
The Knicks are planning to create their own D-League affiliate in White Plains next year, replacing the hybrid arrangement they currently have with the Erie BayHawks, according to Keith Schlosser of Ridiculous Upside. If approved by the league, the five-year proposal would give the Knicks complete control over both basketball and business operations with the new affiliate. They only control basketball development with the BayHawks. Here’s more from the D-League:
- The Magic are in talks with a current D-League team to establish a one-to-one hybrid relationship as early as next season, Orlando CEO Alex Martins tells Josh Robbins of The Orlando Sentinel. Orlando currently shares an affiliation with five other NBA teams. Martins wouldn’t name which team is the potential affiliate, but the Erie BayHawks are a possibility, since the Knicks appear to be moving on.
- D-League president Dan Reed tells Robbins the D-League is looking at expanding soon, likely prioritizing the Northeast region of the country: “We will expand relatively soon, but it will be a measured expansion. We’re not going to grow by 13 teams in a year or two. Our mantra is ‘steady, sustainable growth.’ But we are at the point where it’s time to grow the league based on the stability of the league and the interest that we’re seeing out in the markets.”
- The Wizards have assigned rookie Glen Rice, Jr. to the D-League for a second time this season, the team announced.
- The Warriors D-League affiliate traded Scott Machado to the Blazers affiliate in exchange for the rights to Justin Holiday, per Marc J. Spears of Yahoo! Sports (via Twitter). Holiday’s only NBA action to this point was in nine games with the Sixers last year alongside his brother Jrue. Machado also has limited time in the NBA so far in his career, averaging just 3.5 minutes over six games with the Rockets last year.
- Gino Pilato of D-League Digest takes a look at some players who have received NBA contracts this season after playing with the Rockets D-League affiliate Rio Grand Valley Vipers. The team uses an extreme run-and-gun system that outpaces the already fast-paced D-League, and some have wondered whether the system is beneficial to the developing players beyond inflating their possessions and stats. James Johnson, Troy Daniels, and Chris Johnson have all inked NBA deals after spending time with the Vipers in 2013/14.
WEDNESDAY, 10:38am: The Wizards have officially announced the signing, via press release.
TUESDAY, 6:59pm: Drew Gooden has agreed to sign a 10-day contract with the Wizards, according to Michael Lee of the Washington Post. Yesterday, ESPN’s Marc Stein reported the likelihood that the Wizards would look to bring the 6’10 forward on board, and Yahoo’s Marc J. Spears said that Gooden would be in Washington D.C. today to ink a deal.
With big man Nene sidelined for the next four-to-six weeks in addition to nagging injury issues affecting Kevin Seraphin and Trevor Booker, it’s not surprising that Washington – currently at fifth place in the Eastern Conference and a game and a half out of fourth – would look to add some frontcourt help.
Gooden last played during the 2012/13 season for the Bucks, but only appeared in 16 games and was eventually amnestied in July of 2013. In 2011/12, he appeared in 56 games with 46 starts for Milwaukee, averaging 13.7 PPG, 6.5 RPG, and shot 43.7% from the field in 26.2 MPG.
Nuggets coach Brian Shaw refuted the idea that he hates his roster and vice-versa, writes Chris Dempsey of The Denver Post. Dempsey says that the potentially harmful narrative arose out of a few radio interviews that the rookie head coach had done earlier this week. Shaw addressed the topic earlier today:
“I can’t remember who it was that asked me yesterday; he said ‘Would you have taken this job with the roster, if it was just the guys who are healthy and playing right now would you have taken this job?’…I said ‘Yeah, I most likely would have taken it.’ But the expectation and everything else would have been different, knowing if there wasn’t going to be (Danilo Gallinari, JaVale McGee, and Nate Robinson) for half the season and the situation be what it is…I don’t hate the roster. What I hate is having to beg guys to play. That simple. That shouldn’t be a part of what coaching should be. And circumstances are what they are. None of us asked for it.”
Here are some more miscellaneous news and notes to pass along this evening:
- Forward Jan Vesely intends to continue playing in the NBA rather than returning to Europe after his rookie scale contract runs out at season’s end, agent Alex Raskovic tweets.
- Chris Singleton will hit unrestricted free agency after the Wizards declined his fourth-year option before the season, so he knows his next contract is at stake as he attempts to fill in for an injured Nene Hilario, as J. Michael of CSNWashington.com examines.
- The Thunder were prepared to give up their own 2014 first-rounder in a deadline deal, but Zach Lowe of Grantland hasn’t heard any suggestion that they were ready to part with the first-rounder the Mavericks owe them. That Dallas pick will likely come higher in the draft order.
- Cavaliers head coach Mike Brown was complimentary about Earl Clark, who is reportedly finalizing a contract to join the Knicks: “He’s a good player…He’s going to help (New York), especially in that system playing pick-and-roll and spreading the floor.”
Chuck Myron contributed to this post.
TUESDAY, 8:23am: J. Michael of CSNWashington adds Antawn Jamison and Justin Hamilton to the list of others the Wizards are considering, but Michael confirms that Gooden is the favorite to land a 10-day deal. The team may also hold off on signing anyone to give Chris Singleton a shot at playing time, Michael writes.
MONDAY, 5:11pm: Gooden will be in D.C. tomorrow to ink his deal with the Wizards, tweets Marc J. Spears of Yahoo Sports. Meanwhile, Michael Lee of the Washington Post (on Twitter) hears that it’s “unlikely” that Washington will sign anyone before tomorrow night’s game against the Magic. He cites Lou Amundson and DeSagana Diop as other 10-day possibilities for the Wizards.
4:11pm: It’s likely that the Wizards will sign Drew Gooden to a 10-day deal, according to Marc Stein of ESPN.com (via Twitter). The 32-year-old hasn’t stepped foot on an NBA court since April of last year but he could help fortify Washington’s frontcourt depth in the wake of Nene‘s injury.
We learned last month that Gooden was working out in hopes of landing an NBA deal. Over his 16 games in Milwaukee last season, the 11-year veteran averaged 13.7 points and 6.5 rebounds in 26.2 minutes per game, which added up to a PER of 18.88. The Bucks wound up using the amnesty clause on the 6’11″ big man over the summer, taking his $13.37MM salary between this season and next off of their books.
While other amnesty victims from this past summer like Metta World Peace and Mike Miller were able to hook on elsewhere, there were few, if any, nibbles on Gooden.
The Hawks put in a call last week to Obradoiro of Spain about Mike Muscala, whose NBA rights belong to Atlanta, reports Jorge Sierra of HoopsHype. Still, the Hawks made no offer for the 44th overall pick from the 2013 draft, Sierra notes, adding that Obradoiro has rejected entreaties from other European clubs for the center from Bucknell (Twitter links). More out of the Southeast..
- Tyrus Thomas is not an option for the Wizards due to a back injury, a person close to the situation tells J. Michael of CSNWashington.com (on Twitter). Besides, it looks like Washington has their eye on another 2013 amnesty victim in Drew Gooden.
- Mario Chalmers, a free agent this summer, says that he’s more comfortable than ever with the Heat, writes Shandel Richardson of the Sun Sentinel.
- A fun fact courtesy of Josh Robbins of the Orlando Sentinel (on Twitter): the Magic haven’t signed anyone to a 10-day contract since the team signed Seton Hall product Andre Barrett on March 31, 2005.