Antoine Mason

Eastern Notes: Pistons, Wizards, Carroll

Pistons coach/executive Stan Van Gundy had the opportunity to veto the team’s hire of Arn Tellem as the vice chairman of Palace Sports and Entertainment, David Aldridge of writes. “[Team owner] Tom [Gores] told me, if you’re not comfortable with this, you can veto this,” Van Gundy said. “And I had no intention of doing that. I have 100 percent confidence in Tom. I respect his intellect. I respect his integrity.

Van Gundy will still make the final calls on personnel in Detroit, but he plans to use Tellem’s experience and knowledge in determining player values, Aldridge adds. “Clearly he has a lot of contacts and people that have a loyalty to him,” Van Gundy said. “And that’s what most people will focus on. But the other side that will help us even when it’s with people that Arn doesn’t have a relationship with is, Arn’s been through this so many times with so many clients, he knows what pushes players’ buttons in the recruiting process. He’s been on the other side of it to know what works and what doesn’t. He can bring to us the other side and educate us on the other side of things.”

Here’s more from the Eastern Conference:

  • The Wizards have workouts scheduled on Wednesday for Traevon Jackson (Wisconsin), Antoine Mason (Auburn), Gabriel Olaseni (Iowa), M.J. Rhett (Mississippi), Satnam Singh (India), and Maurice Walker (Minnesota), the team announced.
  • Kentucky shooting guard Devin Booker and Wisconsin forward Sam Dekker will work out for the Hornets on Wednesday, Rick Bonnell of The Charlotte Observer tweets.
  • DeMarre Carroll reiterated past comments indicating that the Hawks will be his first choice in free agency this summer, adding that he’ll nonetheless keep his options open as he spoke in a radio interview on Paul Gant’s “Go For It” show (audio link; transcription via Kurt Helin of ProBasketballTalk).

Chuck Myron contributed to this post.

Draft Notes: Kentucky, Poeltl, Jones

Kentucky University will attempt to set a new record this year by having seven players drafted by NBA teams this June. Kevin Pelton, Fran Fraschilla, and Chad Ford of (Insider subscription required) released their scouting reports on Devin Booker, Karl-Anthony Towns, Willie Cauley-Stein, and Trey Lyles, all of whom announced that they will be leaving Kentucky. Also declaring for the draft today for the Wildcats were Dakari Johnson, Aaron Harrison, and Andrew Harrison.

Here’s more from the college ranks:

  • Utah freshman center Jakob Poeltl is still undecided about entering the 2015 NBA draft, Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports tweets. Poeltl is the No. 11 overall prospect according to Jonathan Givony of DraftExpress and Ford (Insider subscription required) places the big man at No. 14.
  • Auburn senior guard Antoine Mason, son of former NBA player Anthony Mason, has signed a deal with agent Keith Glass, Adam Zagoria of tweets. Mason is a longshot to be selected in June and doesn’t appear amongst the top 100 prospects in either Givony’s or Ford’s rankings.
  • Tyus Jones, Duke’s freshman point guard, hasn’t made up his mind regarding entering this year’s NBA draft, Chip Scoggins of The Star Tribune writes. “I don’t have a timeline,” Jones told Scoggins. “I’m just going to take it slowly and weigh both options. Ultimately just make the right and smart decision. I don’t have a timeline. I’ll sit down with my family, sit down with my coaches and talk about everything and get as much information as possible.” Jones is ranked No. 21 by Givony and No. 24 by Ford.
  • The Rockets are one of the teams that are looking at selecting Jones if he were to enter the draft, Darren Wolfson of 1500 ESPN Twin Cities tweets. Houston owns the Pelicans‘ first-rounder this year, which is likely to fall in the No. 14-18 range, Wolfson adds, which is where the team could target Jones.