Allen Crabbe

NBA G League Assignments/Recalls: 11/7/19

Here are Thursday’s assignments and recalls from around the NBA G League:

  • The Nuggets have assigned rookie forward Vlatko Cancar to the Erie BayHawks, the team’s PR department tweets. The 2017 second-round selection has appeared in one game, a two-minute cameo on Oct. 31. Denver doesn’t have a G League affiliate.
  • The Clippers assigned center Mfiondu Kabengele and guard Derrick Walton Jr. to the Agua Caliente Clippers for a practice and then recalled them, Jovan Buha of The Athletic tweets.
  • The Bulls assigned swingman Denzel Valentine, who missed last season due to an ankle injury, to the Windy City Bulls, the team’s PR department tweets. Valentine practiced with the G League team and is expected to remain with them for their first two games on Friday and Saturday. Rookie power forward Daniel Gafford was also assigned to the Windy City Bulls and will remain for their season opener, according to another team tweet.
  • The Spurs assigned forward Chimezie Metu to their Austin affiliate, then recalled him prior to their game against Oklahoma City, according to a team press release. He’ll be re-assigned to Austin for its season opener on Friday.
  • The Hawks assigned swingman Allen Crabbe to the College Park Skyhawks for a practice and then recalled him, according to Sarah Spencer of the Atlanta Journal Constitution and the team’s PR department (Twitter links). Crabbe is working his way back from knee surgery.
  • The Hornets assigned two rookies, guard Cody Martin and forward Caleb Martin, to the Greensboro Swarm for a practice and then recalled them, according to a team press release. They also recalled rookie forward Jalen McDaniels, according to another team release.

Injury Updates: Kuzma, Nene, Crabbe, Hawks

After a report earlier this week indicated that Kyle Kuzma wouldn’t be healthy for the start of the Lakers‘ training camp, the team has confirmed as much, announcing in a press release that Kuzma is rehabbing a stress reaction in his left foot.

According to the Lakers, Kuzma hasn’t been cleared to practice and is scheduled to undergo an MRI next month when the team returns from its trip to China. The second of L.A.’s two international preseason games vs. Brooklyn takes place in Shenzhen on October 12, so Kuzma’s MRI presumably won’t happen until sometime after that contest.

The Lakers provided updates on a couple more players, announcing that rookie Talen Horton-Tucker is receiving treatment for a stress reaction in his right foot and will be a limited participant in camp. Camp invitee Jordan Caroline, meanwhile, is expected to miss 10-12 weeks after undergoing surgery on his left foot earlier this month.

Horton-Tucker has a guaranteed contract and his spot on the Lakers’ roster won’t be affected by his injury, but Caroline is on a non-guaranteed deal and figures to be waived in the coming days or weeks.

Here are a few more injury updates from around the NBA:

  • The Rockets announced today that Nene has re-aggravated a chronic adductor injury and won’t be able to participate in training camp, as David Aldridge of The Athletic relays (via Twitter). Based on the incentives in Nene’s deal, it’s unlikely he’ll play much this season anyway, but health problems would further reduce the likelihood of him seeing regular action.
  • The Hawks issued a series of injury updates on their players, including John Collins (hip strain), Kevin Huerter (knee pain), Alex Len (low back pain; left ankle sprain), and Allen Crabbe (right knee surgery). Collins, Huerter, and Chandler Parsons (load management) are expected to be somewhat limited in training camp, while Crabbe will likely miss all of camp and the preseason. Len’s status remains up in the air.
  • Keith Pompey of Philly.com takes a look at the work Sixers shooting guard Zhaire Smith has put in to get healthy after missing nearly his entire rookie season due to injury and illness.

Kevin Huerter Talks Hawks’ Draft, 2019/20 Goals

Culture and locker-room fit were important considerations for the Hawks as they made roster moves this offseason, second-year shooting guard Kevin Huerter tells Alex Kennedy of HoopsHype. As Huerter explains, head coach Lloyd Pierce talked on multiple occasions about not bringing in anyone who would be detrimental to the culture the team is trying to build in Atlanta.

“I think every player we brought in has some sort of relationship with one of our coaches or [executives], so they know that we’re bringing in really good guys,” Huerter said. “I think that was really important, first and foremost, especially with a team that could still go through a lot of ups and downs. You don’t want someone in the locker room who is making everyone miserable.”

While Huerter is optimistic about what Allen Crabbe, Jabari Parker, Evan Turner, and Chandler Parsons can contribute on the court, he views those incoming veterans as guys who will “contribute off the court as well,” as he tells Kennedy.

Huerter spoke to Kennedy about many more topics, including the Hawks’ draft, their future free agent outlook, and their expectations for the 2019/20 season. The Q&A is worth checking out in full, but here are a few highlights from the former Maryland standout:

On the Hawks drafting De’Andre Hunter, Cam Reddish, and Bruno Fernando:

“I thought our draft was great. There are very few teams that can come out of the draft saying they got exactly who they wanted, but those three guys are literally the exact players we wanted going into the draft. Anytime that happens, it’s an extremely successful draft.

“I think those guys bring a different dynamic to our team that we didn’t have. De’Andre is a 3/4 and he’s a really good defender, so he was a great pick for us. Cam just has so much potential on the offensive end and what his ceiling could be makes him great for us as well. Bruno is NBA-ready. I think it can be tough for some bigs as they enter the NBA because of how physical it is, but Bruno is physically NBA-ready. Again, I thought it was a really good draft for us.”

On whether free agents will seriously consider the Hawks as they continue to improve:

“Hopefully. Any team that wins becomes pretty attractive to free agents. You see that happen a lot. But for me, our core group of guys could – and should – be enough for us. That’s the way that winning teams are built, at least in the old days. When you want to want to build something that lasts, it’s homegrown guys. But, again, hopefully if we win, [players will want to sign here] and we can figure out which positions we need moving forward. Adding free agents down the line won’t be a bad thing, but first you need to win and then everything else comes with it.”

On whether the Hawks have discussed a goal of making the playoffs in 2019/20:

“Honestly, no. Playoffs, for us, isn’t really a word we talk about – all we talk about is winning more than 29 games. We know how honestly close we were last year – we weren’t too far off from that eighth seed – but we’re probably not going to talk about it for most of the year. It’s not something we talk about in the locker room, trying to sneak in [to the playoffs]. It’s literally just, ‘We’re going to win more than 29 games and continue to get better.’ Then whatever happens, happens.”

Hawks Acquire Allen Crabbe In Trade With Nets

JULY 6: A month after it was agreed upon, the Nets have officially traded Crabbe to the Hawks along with the No. 17 pick (Nickeil Alexander-Walker) and a lottery-protected first-round pick in exchange for Prince and the Hawks’ 2021 second-rounder, according to press releases from both teams.

Brooklyn will, of course, use its cap room to sign Irving and Durant.

JUNE 6: The Nets and Hawks have agreed to a trade that will send Allen Crabbe, the No. 17 pick in the 2019 draft, and a lottery-protected 2020 first-round pick to Atlanta in exchange for Taurean Prince and a 2021 second-round pick, reports ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski (Twitter links).

The move will allow the Nets to clear more than $17MM from their books for the 2019/20 season by swapping Crabbe’s expiring $18.5MM deal for Prince’s ($3.48MM) and clearing the cap hold for the No. 17 pick. That will put Brooklyn on track to enter the offseason with more than $47MM in cap space. The Nets will now have a clearer path to creating two maximum-salary cap slots if they’re willing to renounce D’Angelo Russell‘s cap hold.

[RELATED: Latest On D’Angelo Russell]

The fact that the Nets were willing to agree to move Crabbe so early in the offseason signals that they have big plans for that extra cap room, which is particularly intriguing given the recent rumors linking Kyrie Irving to Brooklyn. According to Wojnarowski (via Twitter), Irving is “serious” about the Nets, and Brooklyn is looking to beat out the Knicks and the rest of the NBA for top free agents this summer.

If Russell is renounced, the Nets would have enough cap space for Irving and another maximum-salary free agent, unless that player has 10+ years of NBA experience (like Kevin Durant). In that scenario, the club would have to make one more modest cost-cutting move.

Besides creating extra cap flexibility, the Nets also pick up a solid young wing with three-and-D potential in Prince. The 25-year-old has averaged 13.9 PPG, 4.3 RPG, and 2.4 APG with a .431/.387/.834 shooting line in 137 games (29.3 MPG) over the last two seasons in Atlanta. He’s extension-eligible this offseason and will be a restricted free agent in 2020 if he doesn’t get a new deal.

From the Hawks’ perspective, acquiring Crabbe in exchange for Prince and their 2021 second-round pick will allow them to pick up two extra first-round selections, which could be used to add two more young prospects to their core or could be dangled in subsequent trade discussions.

Atlanta is now armed with three top-20 picks in the 2019 draft (Nos. 8, 10, and 17). There have been rumors that the Hawks have explored the idea of packaging their two top-10 picks to move up — adding the No. 17 selection to the mix should give the club more leverage in those discussions.

Meanwhile, the on-court impact of swapping out Prince for Crabbe shouldn’t be significant, as they play fairly similar roles. While Crabbe’s lucrative contract isn’t team-friendly, he has still been a very good three-point shooter in recent years, posting a .396 3PT% since signing his four-year deal in 2016, and his deal will expire after the 2019/20 season.

The Hawks’ cap room for 2019 will be cut nearly in half by the deal, but the team still projects to have about $23-25MM in space.

As Bobby Marks of ESPN.com observes (via Twitter), the two teams won’t be able to complete the trade until July, since the Hawks won’t have the cap room necessary to absorb Crabbe’s contract until the new league year begins.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Eastern Notes: Celtics, Crabbe, Clarkson, Sixers

The Celtics have reached an agreement to add another new assistant coach to Brad Stevens‘ staff, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, who reports that the team is bringing aboard Kara Lawson. A former WNBA and Olympic champion, Lawson has worked as a TV analyst for the Wizards for the last three years.

According to Wojnarowski, Lawson had talked to multiple NBA teams in recent years about possible coaching roles, but was convinced to accept an offer from the Celtics based on the opportunity to work with Stevens.

Here’s more from around the Eastern Conference:

  • Allen Crabbe, who will be a member of the Hawks once their trade with Brooklyn becomes official in July, was arrested in Los Angeles on a DUI charge on Wednesday, writes Chris Vivlamore of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Since the trade hasn’t technically been finalized, the Hawks can’t yet comment on Crabbe’s arrest.
  • Jordan Clarkson has hired a new agent, becoming the latest member of the Cavaliers to sign with Rich Paul and Klutch Sports for representation, reports Joe Vardon of The Athletic (via Twitter). Klutch also reps Tristan Thompson, J.R. Smith, and Darius Garland.
  • The Sixers officially announced in a press release that they’ve hired Ime Udoka and Joseph Blair as assistant coaches. The hiring of Udoka, who comes over from San Antonio, was reported during the first week of June.
  • Revisiting the circumstances surrounding the KnicksKristaps Porzingis trade, Sam Amick of The Athletic writes that Porzingis threatened to return to Spain to rehab his ACL injury if New York didn’t move him. A source tells Amick that Porzingis was aware he’d be fined if he made that decision without the team’s permission, but was ready to deal with the consequences.

Atlantic Notes: Crabbe, Draft, Sixers’ No. 24

The Nets are heading into the most crucial offseason under GM Sean Marks. The franchise is armed with cap space, owns a bevy of draft selections (Nos. 17, 27, and 31 overall picks), and has young talent on hand, all parts that make Brooklyn a reportedly desirable destination for marquee free agents.

Michael Scotto of The Athletic examines what strategy the Nets should take with their picks. Attaching a draft selection to Allen Crabbe in order to shed his $18.5MM salary via trade makes sense, especially if the team intends to pursue two marquee free agents. Without making moves like this, the Nets only project to have roughly 30.4MM in salary cap space, as our Salary Cap Digest shows.

Here’s more from the Atlantic Division:

  • Oregon’s Bol Bol is a name to keep an eye on for the Nets, Scotto adds in the same piece. Bol, who is getting attention from the Cavaliers at No. 5 overall, could drop out of the lottery because of medical concerns. Brooklyn could find itself with a similar opportunity to the one it had in 2017 with Caris LeVert.
  • Jarrett Culver (Texas Tech) has met with the Knicks. Stefan Bondy of the New York Daily News relays (Twitter link). Culver, who is reportedly on the Hawks’ radar, is a top-10 prospect and New York owns the No. 3 overall pick.
  • North Carolina’s Cameron Johnson and Purdue’s Carsen Edwards could be options for the Sixers in the first round, Keith Pompey of The Philadelphia Inquirer writes. Philadelphia owns the No. 24 overall pick in addition to four second-rounders.

New York Notes: Russell, Crabbe, Perry, Free Agents

Re-signing point guard D’Angelo Russell will be the top priority for the Nets this summer, writes Michael Scotto of The Athletic. After making several recent runs at restricted free agents such as Tyler Johnson, Allen Crabbe and Otto Porter, Brooklyn will be on defense this year, hoping Russell doesn’t receive an offer that’s too outrageous to match.

The Nets would like to have enough cap flexibility to offer two max contracts and will be handcuffed if Russell receives a substantial offer shortly after free agency begins on July 1, Scotto notes. Brooklyn will have just two days after the moratorium to decide to match, which could tie up money the organization is hoping to use elsewhere.

Scotto considers the Pacers to be a threat to make a move on Russell, with Darren Collison and Cory Joseph both headed toward free agency. That leaves rookie Aaron Holiday as the only other point guard on the roster, and Scotto says Indiana may like the idea of teaming up Russell with Victor Oladipo. Still, he believes the Nets will match any offer unless they find themselves in position to add two elite free agents.

There’s more today from New York City:

  • Scotto lists Brooklyn’s other offseason priorities as trading Crabbe’s $18.5MM salary to open cap space, adding a veteran center to back up Jarrett Allen and finding another stretch four. Scotto notes that the Hawks, Bulls, Mavericks, Pacers, Suns and Kings all have enough cap room to add Crabbe, and the Nets will consider using the stretch provision if they can’t find a taker. Free agents Robin Lopez, Aron Baynes, Boban Marjanovic, Zaza Pachulia, Tyson Chandler and Kyle O’Quinn are possibilities as reserve centers, while Nikola Mirotic, Anthony Tolliver, Mike Scott and Omri Casspi are free agents forwards with 3-point range.
  • The Knicks will prioritize talent over position in the draft, relays Marc Berman of The New York Post. Team president Steve Mills and GM Scott Perry discuss the process in a new “MSG 150” TV show that will air tonight and tomorrow. “Where we are at right now, talent is important,” Perry said. “If it’s very close, then you may lean towards the position of need, but if there is a clear delineation between the talent, I think you always err on the side of talent.”
  • Mike Vorkunov of The Athletic examines all the free agents that the Knicks might consider this summer. Kevin Durant tops the list, of course, but Vorkunov rates plenty of others, including role players who could be useful if New York gets the stars it wants.

Nets’ Allen Crabbe Opts In For 2019/20

Nets shooting guard Allen Crabbe has exercised his player option for the 2019/20 season, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN.com (via Twitter). The move locks in his $18.5MM salary for next year, putting him on track to reach unrestricted free agency in 2020.

Crabbe initially signed a four-year offer sheet worth nearly $75MM with the Nets back in 2016. The Trail Blazers matched that offer and retained Crabbe for the following season, but traded him to Brooklyn in a salary-dump deal during the 2017 offseason.

The 27-year-old’s play during his two years with the Nets has been somewhat underwhelming. After shooting 41.1% from three-point range in Portland, he has made 37.8% of his attempts in Brooklyn, albeit on a higher volume of shots. In 2018/19, he was limited to just 43 games due to knee issues and averaged 9.6 PPG in 26.3 minutes per contest.

Given his modest production, there was never a doubt that Crabbe would opt into the final year of his contract, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that he’s a lock to be on the Nets’ roster next season. Michael Scotto of The Athletic suggested earlier this week that he wouldn’t be surprised if the club explores the trade market for Crabbe, perhaps dangling Denver’s late first-round pick or an early second-rounder in an effort to sweeten the deal.

As long as Crabbe remains on the roster, his $18.5MM cap hit will limit the Nets’ ability to make major moves in free agency this summer. With that money – along with cap holds for D’Angelo Russell and their first-round picks – on the books, Brooklyn projects to have up to about $30.3MM in cap space, which wouldn’t be enough for a maximum salary contract for a veteran player (with seven-plus years of experience).

[RELATED: Maximum Salary Projections For 2019/20]

If the Nets don’t find a trade they like for Crabbe and want to create a max slot, waiving and stretching him could also be an option. Doing so would reduce his 2019/20 cap hit to just under $6.2MM, though it would add identical charges to the team’s books for the following two seasons as well.

Crabbe is the latest in a string of veterans who have picked up player options since the regular season ended in April, joining Jeff Teague, Kent Bazemore, Dwight Howard, and others. The full breakdown of this year’s player option decisions can be found right here.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Nets Notes: Atkinson, Assistants, Free Agency

Kenny Atkinson’s obsessive focus on individual player development led to his contract extension, Michael Scotto of The Athletic reports. ESPN reported on Monday that the Nets head coach would receive an extension, which Scotto confirms. Brooklyn is in playoff contention after winning 20 and 28 games the last two seasons.

“He has done arguably as good of a job as any coach in the league when you look at his improvement each year,” swingman Joe Harris said. “Obviously, I’m again biased just because I’m around him day in and day out and I see his approach and his competitiveness, his toughness, what he’s preached to us has trickled down to each one of the guys. He embodies what we are as an organization. We’re obviously not getting to this point without a leader like that.”

We have more on the Nets:

  • Members of Atkinson’s staff received two-year extensions, Scotto tweets. Atkinson’s staff include Bret Brielmaier, Chris Fleming, Jordan Ott, Pablo Prigioni, Jacque Vaughn, Adam Harrington and Travon Bryant.
  • The Nets will be an attractive free agent destination even if their playoff bid comes up short, Brian Lewis of the New York Post writes. Kyrie Irving will give them consideration, a source told Lewis. There’s also a general feeling that free agents respect what Brooklyn has built and the culture around the franchise. “We’ve competed and won enough games this year that they know that all we need is another All-Star, another dynamic player to take the franchise over the top,” forward Ed Davis told Lewis. “I think that’s what those top-tier free agents that’s what goes through their minds. That’s how they think.”
  • Allen Crabbe underwent knee surgery on Thursday, likely ending his disappointing season.

Allen Crabbe Undergoes Knee Surgery

Nets guard Allen Crabbe underwent successful right knee arthroscopic surgery on Thursday, the team announced in a press release.

The surgery was conducted by Dr. Riley Williams lll at the Hospital for Special Surgery, the team said. Crabbe had been dealing with general knee soreness, missing nine straight contests and 35 of his last 50 games. The team did not issue a timeline for his return.

Crabbe was a key player on the Nets last season, scoring a career-best 13.2 points on 46% shooting from the field. His shooting mark slipped to 37% this year likely due to the knee injury, having only appeared in 43 games.

Crabbe, 26, holds a player option with the Nets for next season worth $18.5MM. He was acquired by Brooklyn in exchange for Andrew Nicholson during the summer of 2017.

The Nets are in the midst of a final playoff push with one week left of the season, holding a 39-40 record and leading the No. 9 place Heat by 0.5 games. They’ll travel to Milwaukee on Saturday, Indiana on Sunday, then back to Brooklyn for a final regular-season showdown against Miami next Wednesday at the Barclays Center.