Month: February 2024

Grizzlies Sign Jordan Farmar For Rest Of Season

The Grizzlies have signed Jordan Farmar for the rest of the season, the team announced via press release. The veteran point guard’s 10-day contract expired overnight. The move restores the Memphis roster to 17 players, two over the normal regular season roster limit, so it appears the NBA has once more given the injury-hit Grizzlies a hardship provision for an extra roster spot. Normally, the league hands out extra roster spots for only 10 days at a time, but it appears it’s made an exception for Memphis and Farmar, just as with the contract Tim Frazier signed for the rest of the season with the Pelicans last week.

Farmar has put up strong numbers, averaging 10.8 points, 3.6 assists and 1.2 turnovers in 25.6 minutes per game across five appearances, three of which were starts. The 10-day deal was his first NBA contract since he reached a January 2015 buyout deal with the Clippers, who are the likely first-round playoff opponent for Memphis this year. Farmar’s contract will carry through the playoffs.

The 29-year-old has received the bulk of the playing time at point guard of late, instead of fellow 10-day signee Ray McCallum, while Mike Conley continues to sit out with a sore Achilles tendon. Four other Grizzlies are also dealing with injuries, as the CBSSports.com injury log shows, including Marc Gasol, who’s out for the season. The team faces a decision regarding McCallum in the next couple of days, as his 10-day contract will expire tonight. Xavier Munford, who’s also on a 10-day deal, is under contract through Tuesday.

Farmar, who’s in his ninth NBA season, will make $111,683 on his new contract. The Grizzlies are on the hook for only $78,011 of it, with the league picking up the rest, presuming Farmar and Memphis didn’t tack next season onto the deal, as is sometimes the case with midseason signees.

Western Notes: Parsons, Speights, Miller, Harris

It’s a long shot, but it’s possible that Chandler Parsons returns to play this season, Mavericks owner Mark Cuban revealed Wednesday, according to Brad Townsend of the Dallas Morning News. “If we make a run and get to the second round [of the playoffs], there’s a chance,” Cuban said. The team’s press release that followed the right knee surgery Parsons had last week referred to the procedure as a season-ender, but Chandler shared Cuban’s optimism Wednesday, saying on the team’s television broadcast of Wednesday’s victory over the Knicks that rehab will be a “piece of cake,” as Townsend also relays.  Parsons said he’d be in a brace for two or three weeks and made reference to a four-to-six week timetable for his recovery. Still, he laughed when told of Cuban’s remark and said he wouldn’t count on his return at any point in the playoffs, Townsend tweets.

See more from the Western Conference:

Lakers Notes: Russell, Young, Nance

Nick Young has accepted D’Angelo Russell‘s apology over the controversial video that had seem to drive a wedge between Russell and his teammates, a source told Mike Bresnahan of the Los Angeles Times (Twitter link). Lakers players reportedly shunned Russell following the public release of a video he secretly recorded that depicted Young talking about women other than his fiancee. Russell apologized to the team before Wednesday’s win over Miami, Jordan Clarkson said, according to Mark Medina of the Los Angeles Daily News (on Twitter), and the rookie expressed profound contrition in an interview with The Vertical’s Adrian Wojnarowski.

“The thing is, we record ourselves doing dumb stuff all the time,” Russell said. “On the road or home, wherever. We go back and watch what we did and said and laugh at ourselves. I guess I just never thought that these pranks we pull on ourselves could have bigger consequences. That was a big lesson I learned. I’ve said to myself over and over: What could anyone possibly gain by intentionally doing something that could hurt someone else’s relationship? I never wanted to hurt anyone. I’m sorry for it.”

The flap that temporarily cast the future of last year’s No. 2 overall pick in doubt seemed to dissipate amid the team’s victory and the appearance of Lamar Odom, who attended his first NBA game after a health scare that threatened his life in October. Kobe Bryant said after the game that Odom’s recovery stands as an example for Russell of how a dire situation can improve over time, notes Eric Pincus of the Los Angeles Times (Twitter link). See more on the Lakers:

  • A prominent agent who spoke with Sean Deveney of The Sporting News laughed off the notion that players around the league would be reluctant to play with the Lakers if Russell is still on the team, and Deveney suggests the long-term implications of the video incident are overblown. Given Young’s poor production this season, his status on the team is more tenuous than Russell’s, Deveney insists.
  • The agent pointed to the Lakers’ money and geographic location as reasons why they’re a draw for players, but the results of this past offseason, when LaMarcus Aldridge and others spurned the team, say otherwise, contends Tim Bontemps of The Washington Post, who believes the team’s issues go far beyond the video.
  • Larry Nance Jr. had never played small forward before this season, but the Lakers have him at the three now and will keep him at the position for summer-league play with an eye toward using him as a long-term complement to power forward Julius Randle, as Medina details.

USC PG Julian Jacobs To Declare For Draft

USC junior point guard Julian Jacobs will enter this year’s NBA draft, league sources tell Shams Charania of The Vertical. He’s undecided about hiring an agent, a move that would prevent him from returning to the Trojans for his senior year even if he withdraws by the May 25th deadline. Rankings indicate the 6’4″ 22-year-old is a long shot for the draft, as Chad Ford of ESPN.com doesn’t list him and Jonathan Givony of DraftExpress has him as only the 75th-best junior. However, executives from NBA teams are fond of his drive, and they expect it won’t take long during the predraft process for Jacobs to make it clear that he’s worthy of a second-round pick, Charania writes.

Jacobs had a breakout season of sorts, averaging double figures in points for the first time and significantly raising the volume of his assists while his number of turnovers held steady. He posted 11.6 points, 5.4 assists and 2.7 turnovers per game and shot 32.6% from 3-point range, the best percentage of his college career.

The Las Vegas native nonetheless slumped toward the end of the season, scoring fewer than 10 points in four of his last seven games and delivering a clunker in USC’s first-round NCAA Tournament loss to Providence, a game in which he scored eight points and had three assists and five turnovers. It was a sour ending to a college career that began auspiciously, as he became a starter in just his second game for the Trojans. He was outside the top 100 in the Recruiting Services Consensus Index coming out of high school in 2013.

Bulls Thinking About Trading Jimmy Butler?

The Bulls appear to be considering the idea of a Jimmy Butler trade this summer, according to “rumblings” that Chris Mannix of The Vertical has heard (video link; scroll to 6:40 mark). Mannix, who says there’s “legitimate interest in Chicago in potentially dealing Jimmy Butler this offseason,” doesn’t make it entirely clear just how willing the Bulls would be to trade the swingman who signed a five-year, $92.34MM deal last summer, but it nonetheless looks like it’s not out of the question.

Several executives who spoke with Mannix identified the Magic as a team to watch regarding Butler, as Mannix wrote earlier this week, when he confirmed earlier reporting that the Celtics, among others, reached out to gauge Chicago’s interest in a deal at the deadline. The Bulls turned those teams away, but execs told Mannix that they’re going to try again.

Butler made waves in December when he criticized coach Fred Hoiberg, who’s also in the first year of a five-year contract, for his laid-back demeanor and said he wanted to be coached harder. Butler insisted that he didn’t mean to call out Hoiberg, but some around the Bulls have seen Butler as selfish and were confused about why Butler wasn’t embracing Hoiberg’s offense, as K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune reported around that time.

The Bulls played well for a stretch after Butler’s comments about the coach, winning seven of their next nine games, but injuries to Butler and others and poor play in the time since have left Chicago at 37-37, two games behind the Pacers for the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference. A strained left knee kept Butler out for a month earlier this season, and he sat three more games right after coming back March 5th, leading Vertical colleague Bobby Marks to express concern about his long-term health in the same video.

Butler has played in every game since March 14th but has averaged only 14.3 points in 33.8 minutes per game. Overall, he’s posting a career high 21.0 points per game this season.

What would a fair deal for Butler look like? Leave a comment to share your thoughts.

Hoops Rumors Community Shootaround 3/30/16

Lakers rookie D’Angelo Russell has reportedly upset the bulk of the team’s roster thanks to a prank gone terribly wrong. Teammates are ostracizing Russell, who recorded a private conversation in which Nick Young spoke about being with women other than his fiancee, the Australian rapper Iggy Azalea, according to a report by Baxter Holmes and Marc Stein of ESPN.com. Some within Lakers brass are upset with Russell, too, but they’ve left the matter to the players thus far, Holmes and Stein write. Coach Byron Scott has notoriously harped on Russell’s maturity, work ethic and attitude, and several team sources who spoke with Mark Medina of the Los Angeles Daily News had levied the same criticisms even before the video was exposed.

Young and Russell were friends, with the swingman at times publicly sticking up for the 2015 No. 2 overall pick, but sources who spoke with Medina believe the now-strained friendship is beyond repair. Young went out of his way to avoid crossing Russell’s path at Staples Center before Friday’s game, according to Medina. No Lakers would sit with Russell for a recent breakfast meeting, Holmes and Stein hear. Another time, Lou Williams stood up and walked away when Russell sat next to him in the locker room, according to Holmes and Stein.

The sanctity and privacy of the locker room is one of the most important unwritten rules in all of team sports. Athletes are under the microscope from media and fans almost constantly and the locker room is supposed to act as a buffer and a safe haven where players can be free to relax and be themselves. Russell’s actions, while likely not malicious in intent, definitely crossed a line, and it remains to be seen if the relationship between Russell and his teammates can be repaired.

Russell has had a difficult rookie campaign on the court as well, struggling to make the jump to the NBA as a point guard after one season at Ohio State. He’s appeared in 72 contests, including 40 as a starter, and is averaging 13.1 points, 3.4 rebounds and 3.4 assists on the year. His play of late has shown improvement, but this rift between him and his teammates could set back the progress of the entire franchise. Chemistry and trust are vital to the success of any team, even more so between a point guard and his running mates, and if the rest of the Lakers are freezing him out off the court, it’s fair to wonder how this may impact the team in the long run.

This brings me to the topic for today: Should the Lakers look to trade D’Angelo Russell?

In all fairness to Russell, he is just 20 years old, which leaves him plenty of time to mature and grow as a person. The point guard certainly has a wealth of talent and has shown flashes of greatness on occasion this season, which bodes well for his future as a player, but it remains to be seen if his teammates will get over this act of betrayal. There may be serious personal consequences for Young, whose relationship could end over Russell’s clandestine video being made public. Regardless of what you think of Young’s actions in a moral sense, it wasn’t Russell’s place to reveal them to the world. The Lakers are a rebuilding team and many of their current players likely won’t be returning next season, so the current locker room dynamic may be altered as a result. But the question still remains as to how any new teammates will react to Russell and if it will hurt the franchise’s free agent recruiting efforts.

Now it’s time to turn the discussion over to you. Do you think that Los Angeles should part ways with Russell as a result of his actions? Or do you believe he is too valuable a player to trade? Will this scandal blow over, or do you think the Lakers’ locker room is irreparably broken? Take to the comments section to share your thoughts and opinions on the matter. We look forward to what you have to say.

And-Ones: Dunleavy Sr., Diallo, Murray

Mike Dunleavy Sr. has officially been hired as head coach of Tulane, the university announced. “We could not be more excited to welcome Mike Dunleavy to the Green Wave family,” Tulane’s athletic director Troy Dannen said. “His reputation as a great evaluator of talent, master of strategy and teacher of the game define him today as one of the top basketball minds in the country at any level. His commitment to Tulane athletics is a game changer for our program.” Dunleavy has zero college coaching experience but owns a career NBA mark of 613-716 from his stints with the Lakers, Bucks, Trail Blazers and Clippers.

Here’s more from around the league:

  • Hawaii junior combo forward Stefan Jankovic intends to sign with an agent and enter the 2016 NBA draft, Jon Rothstein of CBSSports.com reports (via Twitter). The 22-year-old is the No. 78 ranked junior according to Jonathan Givony of DraftExpress.
  • Creighton junior point guard Maurice Watson Jr. intends to declare for the draft but won’t hire an agent, Jeff Goodman of ESPN.com tweets. Watson is the No. 70 ranked junior according to Givony.
  • Kansas freshman forward/center Cheick Diallo, who has announced his intention to enter this year’s NBA draft, may be better served to return to school for another season, Adam Zagoria of SNY.tv relays. “He will get drafted but he could be in a much better position if he stayed another year to develop. He is headed to the D-League if he stays in the draft,” an NBA executive told Zagoria regarding Diallo’s NBA prospects.  The young big man is currently ranked 36th in Chad Ford’s ESPN Insider rankings and 39th according to Givony.
  • University of Washington freshman Dejounte Murray intends to sign with agent Rich Paul of Klutch Sports, reports Chris Haynes of The Northeast Ohio Media Group (on Twitter). Hiring an agent would eliminate the possibility of the combo guard returning to school in 2016/17. The 19-year-old is the No. 37 overall prospect, according to Givony, though Haynes notes that Murray is a potential lottery selection come June.
  • The Celtics have assigned James Young to their D-League affiliate, the team announced. This will be Young’s 12th jaunt to Maine on the season.

2015/16 Salary Cap Update: Sacramento Kings

The NBA’s salary cap for 2015/16 is set at $70MM, which is good for an 11% increase from last season, and the luxury tax line is fixed at $84.74MM. With the February 18th cutoff date for trades and the de facto deadline of March 1st for buyouts now past, we at Hoops Rumors are in the process of updating the salary cap commitments for each NBA franchise for the 2015/16 campaign. Here’s the cap breakdown for the Sacramento Kings, whose regular season roster can be viewed here:

  • 2015/16 Salary Cap= $70,000,000
  • 2015/16 Luxury Tax Line= $84,740,000
  • Fully Guaranteed Salary Commitments= $72,671,296*
  • Remaining Cap Room= $2,671,296
  • Amount Below Luxury Tax Line= $12,068,704

*Note: This figure includes the $882,630 due Wayne Ellington, who was waived via the stretch provision, plus the $25,000 owed to Marshall Henderson, and the $30,000 due Vince Hunter, both of whom were waived.

Cap Exceptions Available:

  • Room= $1,473,212

Cash Available to Send Out In Trades= $3,400,000

Cash Available to Receive Via Trade= $3,400,000

Note: Despite the trade deadline having passed, the NBA season technically doesn’t end until June 30th. Teams are able to again make trades upon the completion of the regular season or when/if they are eliminated from the playoffs, whichever comes later. So these cash limits still apply.

The Basketball Insiders salary pages were used in the creation of this post.

Eastern Notes: Afflalo, Powell, Zeller

The Knicks‘ decision to switch him to a reserve role isn’t sitting well with Arron Afflalo, who now appears all but assured to opt out of his deal for 2016/17 and become an unrestricted free agent this offseason, writes Marc Berman of The New York Post. Afflalo took to his personal Instagram account to voice his displeasure, writing, “Two years of just control what you can control right?… while making years of growth appears as if it has just stopped. Yeah, OK. 10th year coming up and this time around that [expletive] won’t be forgotten.’’

When asked by reporters to explain the Instagram post, Afflalo said, “It didn’t mean much, to be honest. Just a statement to myself. That’s about it. I plan on growing next year. Frustration ain’t the word,’’ Afflalo added. “It is what it is. People can have their opinion of what they feel you bring to a team. That’s their opinion. My opinion may be different. For now it’s about the team, being professional and doing your job. ‘’

Here’s more from the Eastern Conference:

  • Afflalo refutes Knicks interim coach Kurt Rambis‘ account that the two had a discussion about the benching, emphatically stating that there was no miscommunication between the pair and that no conversation occurred, writes Stefan Bondy of The New York Daily News. “There’s no breakdown in communication,” Afflalo said. “We never had the communication. …I don’t know why he would say there was a conversation.
  • Power forward Josh Powell, whom the Bucks waived this preseason, has signed with Indios de Mayaguez of Puerto Rico, the team announced (translation via Orazio Cauchi of Sportando). Powell spent the earlier part of this season with San Lorenzo in Argentina.
  • One of the positives that came out of Al Jefferson missing six weeks due to a knee injury this season was that it proved to the Hornets that Cody Zeller is a legitimate NBA center, writes Rick Bonnell of The Charlotte Observer. The 23-year-old is averaging 9.0 points and 6.3 rebounds in 24.7 minutes per game and could provide Charlotte with a fallback if Jefferson were to depart as an unrestricted free agent this summer.

Malik Beasley To Enter Draft

MARCH 30th, 7:52pm: Beasley has hired ASM Sports to represent him, which would eliminate the opportunity for him to return to Florida State, Alex Kennedy of Basketball Insiders tweets.

MARCH 21st, 8:15pm: Florida State has announced that freshman Malik Beasley will enter the NBA draft, tweets Jeff Goodman of ESPN.com. Goodman doesn’t believe Beasley is simply taking advantage of new regulations that allow players to work out for NBA teams without losing their eligibility, suggesting his ultimate decision may match up with that of fellow FSU freshman Dwayne Bacon Jr. (Twitter link).

A 6’4″ shooting guard, Beasley averaged 15.6 points and 5.3 rebounds per game for the Seminoles, whose season ended last week with a loss to Valparaiso in the NIT. ESPN draft specialist Chad Ford puts him “firmly on the first-round bubble” (Twitter link). Ford has Beasley listed 45th overall and eighth among shooting guards in his latest mock draft. Jonathan Givony of DraftExpress puts Beasley 32nd on his list of the top 100 prospects.

Beasley would have been “foolish” not to enter the draft this year, tweets Mike Schmitz of The Vertical on Yahoo Sports. In his evaluation of the 19-year-old, Schmitz says Beasley offers athleticism, shooting and slashing ability and is particularly dangerous in the open court. Question marks include his abilities as a shot creator, playmaker and defender.