Bogdan Bogdanovic

Multi-Team Deal Possible For Jae Crowder

Several teams have expressed interest in Suns forward Jae Crowder and there’s speculation that a trade could get done soon, according to Eric Pincus of Bleacher Report. Crowder, who had been a starter during his first two years in Phoenix, is working out on his own while he waits for a deal to be completed.

The Bucks, Hawks and Warriors are among the most prominent suitors for Crowder, sources tell Pincus, and an unidentified executive believes the final version of the deal could include as many as five teams.

Pincus hears that Milwaukee has offered Grayson Allen for Crowder, while Atlanta is willing to part with some combination of Bogdan Bogdanovic, Justin Holiday and John Collins. The Suns don’t have any immediate interest in either of those offers, Pincus adds.

As reported earlier today by Jake Fischer of Yahoo Sports, the Rockets could play an important role in a multi-team deal. Shams Charania of Yahoo Sports stated last week that Phoenix had interest in Kenyon Martin Jr., and Pincus speculates that veteran guard Eric Gordon could also be included in a trade that sends Crowder and Dario Saric to another team. Pincus hears that Houston would want “real value” to get involved, whether it’s in the form of young talent or draft assets.

The Warriors could be a team to watch in the Crowder sweepstakes if they’ve become more willing to unload some of their young players after an 8-10 start, Pincus writes. Golden State’s defense has regressed after losing Gary Payton II and Otto Porter in free agency, and Crowder is the type of multi-positional defender who could fix those issues.

The Warriors also need help with rebounding after falling from seventh to 25th in the league in that category, and rival executives expect them to target another big man as well as a defensive wing. Pincus cites Myles Turner and Jakob Poeltl as possibilities, though the Pacers may decide to keep Turner after their strong start. The Spurs are limited to less than $13MM as the starting point for an extension offer to Poeltl, and the team may be inclined to trade him rather than risk losing him in free agency.

Golden State would have to send out nearly $16MM in salary to acquire both Crowder and Poeltl, but it’s limited in what it can offer until Donte DiVincenzo, JaMychal Green, Andre Iguodala and Kevon Looney become trade-eligible later this season.

Pincus offers a sample trade in which send the Warriors send James Wiseman and Ryan Rollins to the Spurs, while the Rockets get Jonathan Kuminga from Golden State and Saric from Phoenix. Another Pincus suggestion has the Warriors keeping Kuminga while shipping Moses Moody and either Patrick Baldwin or Rollins to the Rockets, while San Antonio gets Baldwin or Rollins along with Wiseman.

Bogdan Bogdanovic On Suns’ Radar

Bogdan Bogdanovic is a potential trade target for the Suns, according to Kevin O’Connor of The Ringer, who reports that the Hawks swingman is among the players on Phoenix’s radar.

Bogdanovic could be part of the return if the Suns and Hawks were to make a deal involving forward Jae Crowder, who has reportedly drawn interest from Atlanta. John Collins has been mentioned as another possible target in a Crowder trade between the Suns and the Hawks, but there have been conflicting reports on whether Phoenix has real interest in Collins, due at least in part to his pricey long-term contract.

Collins is owed $23.5MM this season, with two guaranteed years beyond this one and a $26.58MM player option for 2025/26. Bogdanovic has an $18MM cap hit this season and an $18MM player option for 2023/24.

As O’Connor writes, Bogdanovic “checks a lot of boxes as a shooter, ball handler, and rock-solid defender.” However, he has yet to play at all this season after undergoing knee surgery in May, and it’s unclear when he’ll be ready to make his season debut.

This is the second time we’ve heard Bogdanovic linked to the Suns. Jake Fischer of Yahoo Sports first brought up the possibility during the preseason, writing that front office personnel had speculated about the possibility of a Crowder/Landry Shamet package in exchange for Bogdanovic.

A source told Fischer at the time that Shamet wasn’t part of the Suns’ discussions with the Hawks, but Phoenix would have to add at least one player to Crowder ($10.18MM cap hit) in order to match salaries. Dario Saric ($9.24MM) and Torrey Craig ($5.12MM) are among the Suns’ other possible trade candidates, as O’Connor notes.

Southeast Notes: Wright, Carter, Hampton, Bogdanovic, Clifford

With veteran guard Delon Wright sidelined indefinitely due to a strained right hamstring, the Wizards missed his perimeter defense in a 127-117 loss to the Pacers Friday night, per Chase Hughes of NBC Sports Washington.

Though the 6’5″ combo guard is averaging a modest 6.5 PPG, 3.3 APG and 2.5 RPG in his four games with Washington, he gives the team size as a reserve guard and wing toughness that it had lacked last season, Hughes opines.

“It’s tough,” shooting guard Bradley Beal said of life without Wright. “You could see it tonight because he’s a pest on defense, he gets us those deflections. He’s just everywhere. He’s a pest. He gets in on the bigs, he gets those reach-ins, a lot of those things. He gets into the ball. Really good defender.”

The 30-year-old out of Utah signed a two-year, $16MM deal with Washington during the offseason. He suffered a grade two hamstring strain, and is expected to be unavailable for six-to-eight weeks. Hughes thinks that Beal, Monte Morris, and Will Barton will need to step up on the defensive side of the ball in the absence of Wright, as will small forward Deni Avdija, who has emerged as a versatile defender thus far, capable of defending smaller backcourt players.

There’s more out of the Southeast Division:

  • Magic starting center Wendell Carter Jr. has made a representation change. Khobi Price of The Orlando Sentinel tweets that the 6’10” big man has inked a new deal with LIFT Sports Management. Meanwhile, Price reports in a separate piece that Carter’s Orlando teammate R.J. Hampton is departing LIFT after the Magic opted not to exercise its team option on his fourth season.
  • Hawks guard Bogdan Bogdanovic is gradually moving through his recovery process from a May knee surgery. Atlanta is excited about the progress Bogdanovic has managed to make through his rehabilitation thus far, writes Lauren Williams of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “I’m back to the court activities, and I feel good, just a little out of basketball shape,” Bogdanovic told Williams. “You know, I need a rhythm back, you know, change of direction, explosive moves. But now I’m focusing on that.” Retired Hawks sharpshooter Kyle Korver, now the team’s director of player affairs and development, has made himself available to Bogdanovic so that the current Atlanta wing can tweak the mechanics of his shooting form post-surgery. “He helped me a lot, you know, especially through the challenging times, where I couldn’t, like, figure it out, how to make that transition, from use, to what I’m doing in the weightlifting room with the strength coaches, and everybody else, (physical therapy), how to translate it on the court,” Bogdanovic said.
  • Hornets head coach Steve Clifford can be credited at least in part with the club’s solid 3-3 start to the 2022/23 season, writes Roderick Boone of The Charlotte Observer. “I think Steve is one of the most underrated coaches in the league,” Warriors head coach Steve Kerr said. “His defensive schemes are really sharp. He always does some interesting things against us to make us think, to make us work for baskets. His teams tend to execute really well on the offensive side.” Clifford’s players appreciate the organization he is bringing to bear for the club during his second go-around running the show. “He communicates very well on what he wants from us, and if we don’t do that he holds us accountable,” Kelly Oubre said. “That’s everything in this league because obviously we have a young team, but at the end of the day we are trying to grow and learn and be the best in our profession.”

Southeast Notes: Suggs, Martin, Bogdanovic, Leonsis

Jalen Suggs hasn’t been able to avoid injury issues since coming to the NBA, writes Khobi Price of The Orlando Sentinel. After being limited to 48 games as a rookie, the Magic guard suffered a capsule sprain and bone bruise in his left knee in an October 7 preseason contest, then had to leave Friday’s game with a sprained right ankle.

Suggs twisted the ankle in the third quarter after being fouled and landing awkwardly on a drive to the basket. He was able to shoot his free throws, but then hopped to the locker room with help from trainers and didn’t return. An MRI today confirmed that it’s a sprain, and Suggs’ return will depend on how he responds to treatment, the Magic tweeted.

“My heart goes out to the kid,” coach Jamahl Mosley said. “He’s working and continuing to battle no matter what happens. He’s continued to put the work in despite injuries. He’s doing the work with the film. He’s a resilient, tough kid. He’s going to continue to bounce back.”

There’s more from the Southeast Division:

  • The Hornets may be without Cody Martin for a while, according to Roderick Boone of The Charlotte Observer. Martin sat out Friday’s game with left quad soreness after getting injured in the first quarter of the season opener. He also missed all but one preseason game while recovering from left knee tendiopathy. “Hopefully, it’s not anything that’s going to linger,” coach Steve Clifford said. “When he first went in (Wednesday’s) game … he kind of stumbled and his knee bent, the one that he’s had issues with. So it flared back up and so obviously we need to be careful with this. They had done a great job getting him back. He’s, to me, is a critical, critical player on our team and we need what he brings. But the priority right now is just to get him healthy.”
  • Hawks guard Bogdan Bogdanovic still has a way to go before returning from knee surgery, per Lauren Williams of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Coach Nate McMillan said Bogdanovic hasn’t progressed beyond light shooting and drills, and the medical staff can’t determine how close he is to playing until they can watch him at practice.
  • A group led by Wizards owner Ted Leonsis has emerged as the frontrunner to buy baseball’s Washington Nationals, report David Aldridge, Brittany Ghiroli and Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic. Leonsis also owns the NHL’s Capitals and the WNBA’s Mystics.

Injury Updates: Suggs, Nets, Westbrook, Bogdanovic

Magic guard Jalen Suggs, who was diagnosed with a left knee capsule sprain and bone bruise after leaving the team’s October 7 preseason game, will be available when Orlando opens its regular season on Wednesday in Detroit, head coach Jamahl Mosley said on Sunday (link via Khobi Price of The Orlando Sentinel).

It’s a somewhat surprising update, since bone bruises can be troublesome ailments and the Magic have generally taken a conservative approach when bringing back young players from injuries during the last couple years.

One orthopedic surgeon who spoke to Price last week speculated that the capsule sprain would take about two-to-four weeks to heal, while the bone bruise might extend Suggs’ recovery timeline beyond that. However, that surgeon didn’t assess Suggs first-hand, and it appears the former No. 5 overall pick will comfortably beat that estimated timeline.

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

  • The Nets confirmed today that Joe Harris (foot) and Seth Curry (ankle) will not be available for the team’s regular season opener on Wednesday, tweets Kristian Winfield of The New York Daily News. Harris and Curry, both of whom are coming back from ankle surgery, will continue to go through contact practices this week, with Brooklyn expecting to offer another update on Thursday.
  • Russell Westbrook‘s left hamstring injury isn’t considered serious, according to Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports, who tweets that the Lakers guard will be listed as day-to-day after undergoing some tests. There’s no structural damage to the hamstring, Haynes adds.
  • Hawks swingman Bogdan Bogdanovic is making progress as he continues to recover from knee surgery, but he’s unlikely to be available for the team’s regular season opener on Wednesday, head coach Nate McMillan told reporters on Sunday (Twitter link via Lauren L. Williams of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution).
  • While Kings rookie forward Keegan Murray isn’t dealing with an injury, he has been placed in the NBA’s health and safety protocols, reports Sean Cunningham of Fox 40 Sacramento (Twitter link). It’s unclear if Murray will be cleared to play in the team’s regular season opener on Wednesday.

Jae Crowder Rumors: Hawks, Jazz, Celtics, Grizzlies

Rival teams are a little surprised by the way the Suns have handled the Jae Crowder situation, according to Jake Fischer of Yahoo Sports, who notes that keeping a player away from the team generally lowers his trade value. Crowder didn’t join the Suns for training camp this fall as the two sides attempt to find him a new NBA home.

“I thought the way Phoenix played the situation was strange,” a Western Conference executive told Fischer. “You’re not a super deep team. You’re a contender. Doesn’t it seem like there’s some other way to resolve this other than him sitting out and hurting your depth?”

An Eastern Conference exec who spoke to Fischer offered a similar assessment: “For Jae to hold out is pretty rare. It’s pretty extreme. It’s really interesting they didn’t just play hardball with him.”

A Shams Charania report earlier this week indicated that the Hawks are among the teams with interest in Crowder, and Fischer confirms that Phoenix and Atlanta have had conversations about the veteran forward throughout the offseason. The Hawks are believed to be one of Crowder’s preferred landing spots, along with the Heat, Fischer writes.

As for what the Hawks might be willing to give up for Crowder, that remains unclear. Front office personnel have speculated about the possibility of a Crowder/Landry Shamet package for Bogdan Bogdanovic, but one source told Fischer that Shamet isn’t part of the Suns’ discussions with the Hawks. Some league executives have wondered if Atlanta would give up De’Andre Hunter in a deal for Crowder, says Fischer, but there’s no indication the team is exploring that scenario.

As I suggested on Monday, a package of Justin Holiday and a young player such as Jalen Johnson could theoretically work from a salary-matching perspective. According to Fischer, it’s possible that structure would work if a third team were involved, allowing the Suns to acquire a different player on their wish list.

Here’s more on Crowder from Fischer:

  • The Suns have inquired about acquiring Jazz guard Jordan Clarkson in exchange for Crowder, sources tell Fischer. It’s unclear whether Phoenix would be willing to attach a draft asset to Crowder to land Clarkson. The rebuilding Jazz wouldn’t have much interest in Crowder as a player, so they’d need to be enticed to make a deal.
  • The Suns are believed to have interest in Celtics guard Derrick White, but Boston hasn’t entered the mix for Crowder so far, according to Fischer.
  • While the Grizzlies could theoretically build a package for Crowder around Danny Green‘s expiring contract, there are a couple roadblocks, as Fischer explains. The Suns don’t want to take on Green while he recovers from a torn ACL and are reluctant to send Crowder to a Western Conference rival unless the deal makes Phoenix significantly better. Sources tell Fischer that Memphis isn’t actively pursuing Crowder.

Southeast Notes: Ball, Plumlee, Beal, Wizards, Hawks

The Hornets brought in LiAngelo Ball on a non-guaranteed contract and he enters training camp with the aim of joining his brother LaMelo Ball on the 15-man roster, he told Rod Boone of the Charlotte Observer.

“I feel like I can be a part of the team. I’m just going to play my hardest,” LiAngelo said. “But I feel like my game will carry itself and hopefully I can make the team and play with my brother.”

We have more from the Southeast Division:

  • Mason Plumlee started all 73 games in which appeared for the Hornets last season. Head coach Steve Clifford said the plan is for Plumlee to remain the starter with Nick Richards the favorite to back him up at center, Boone tweets.
  • Wizards star Bradley Beal, who signed a five-year max extension this summer, says there’s one more box to check off in his career — to show that he’s a “winner,” Chase Hughes of NBC Sports Washington writes. “I’ve shown I can score with the best of them, I’ve shown I can be an All-Star, I’ve shown I can be an All-NBA player,” he said. “I’ve checked every box. Now I have to win and be a winner. That’s my final box that I want to check and will check.”
  • Wizards president of basketball operations Tommy Sheppard said the team’s offseason additions should make the club tougher and more tenacious, according to Bijan Todd of NBC Sports Washington. “What happens is, one or two players can change the way your team is perceived by the other team,” Sheppard said. “You got one or two tough guys, all of a sudden people are like, ‘Hey, don’t mess with this guys.’…It brings it out of [other players] when you look to your left and your right and there’s a lot more fight next to you, it comes out in you too.”
  • Other than Bogdan Bogdanovic, who is still rehabbing from knee surgery performed in May, the members of the Hawks‘ roster came to camp in excellent shape and good health, Lauren Williams of the Atlanta Journal Constitution writes. “I expected them to pass the test if they did anything this summer, and we had some guys put up some good numbers,” coach Nate McMillan said. “But everybody passed the test, and we can move on. (We) came in today, I thought these guys would be a little sore. But they came out and had another good intense practice.”

Hawks Rumors: Collins, Hunter, Injuries, Murray

The Hawks kicked off the NBA’s Media Day season this morning, with general manager Landry Fields telling reporters that John Collins is “still here for a reason” after a summer of trade speculation, tweets Atlanta reporter Brad Rowland.

Trade talk is nothing new for Collins, who has seemingly been on the block since signing a five-year, $125MM deal last offseason. There were numerous rumors involving Collins leading up to this year’s draft, and he was reportedly part of the package the Hawks offered to Brooklyn in an attempt to acquire Kevin Durant.

Fields said Collins understands the situation and has remained professional (Twitter link). The GM added that Collins has expressed his opinion on the constant trade talks, but he understands what the team is doing (Twitter link).

There’s more from the team’s media session:

  • Fields said negotiations are continuing with De’Andre Hunter and the team hopes to have an rookie scale extension in place before the October 17 deadline, tweets Lauren L. Williams of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. According to head coach Nate McMillan, Hunter has been able to go through normal workouts this summer, which he couldn’t do last offseason because of a medical procedure (Twitter link).
  • Fields also provided health updates on a few players, saying Bogdan Bogdanovic is “not going to be 100% for training camp” after having surgery on his right knee in May (Twitter link). The team is focused on getting Bogdanovic back to full health at some point during the season, Fields added. He also said first-round pick AJ Griffin has been “full go” for a few weeks following a foot injury that prevented him from playing in Summer League (Twitter link), and second-year power forward Jalen Johnson will also be ready for camp after a non-surgical procedure on his left knee (Twitter link).
  • McMillan was in constant contact with Trae Young as the Hawks worked out a trade with the Spurs for Dejounte Murray, Williams tweets. The coach added that Young is looking forward to having a chance to play off the ball this season. Fields admitted having two traditional ball-handlers in the backcourt might be “a little clunky at first,” but he expressed confidence that Young and Murray will figure out their roles (Twitter link).
  • Fields plans to keep the 15th roster spot open due to luxury tax concerns, tweets Mike Vorkunov of The Athletic. The Hawks are about $1MM over the tax line, and Fields indicated the team’s performance will determine whether he tries to get back under the threshold. “It’s going to be a day-to-day thing,” he said.

Hawks Notes: Murray, Bogdanovic, Skyhawks

New Hawks guard Dejounte Murray, a 2022 All-Star with the Spurs, will help shore up Atlanta’s backcourt defense thanks to his abilities to track passes, steal the ball in a variety of ways, and gobble up rebounds at a high rate for his 6’4″ frame, John Schuhmann of writes in a detailed analysis of how Murray can help his new team right the ship following a disappointing 2021/22 season.

Starting alongside All-Star point guard Trae Young, Murray is a solid driver with the ball, an above-average passer (he averaged 9.2 APG last season), and an effective mid-range jump shooter, though Schuhmann notes that Murray struggles as a catch-and-shoot three-point shooter.

There’s more out of Atlanta:

  • Hawks shooting guard Bogdan Bogdanovic has progressed to on-court work in his native Serbia as he continues to rehab following a May right knee surgery, reports Johnny Askounis of Eurohoops. The 6’6″ wing is expected to be able to suit up for the Hawks’ preseason. Bogdanovic appeared in 63 contests for Atlanta in 2021/22, averaging 14.1 PPG, 4.0 RPG, 3.1 APG, and 1.1 SPG, while posting shooting splits of .431/.368/.843.
  • Three players from the Hawks’ NBAGL affiliate, the College Park Skyhawks, are playing on Team USA’s 12-man roster in the current qualifying window for the 2023 World Cup. Skyhawks personnel believes that’s another sign that Atlanta’s G League club can serve as a development hub for young talent, writes Lauren Williams of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. The Skyhawks players competing with Team USA are DaQuan Jeffries, Langston Galloway and Malik Ellison“It validates a lot,” Skyhawks GM Tori Miller said. “Our end goal in College Park, it’s all about staff development and career developments and trying to create a pipeline of talent for the Atlanta Hawks… Knowing that we’re bringing in quality guys into the program, from a character standpoint and also from a talent standpoint, because being selected by Team USA, it’s more than talent, right?”
  • In case you missed it, free agent power forward Chris Silva has signed a contract with the Hawks, and appears poised to test his mettle in the team’s September training camp.

Southeast Notes: Poole, Murray, Banchero, Bogdanovic, Echenique

The Magic will be ready with an offer sheet if Warriors guard Jordan Poole reaches free agency next summer, an unidentified Eastern Conference executive tells Sean Deveney of Heavy. Although Poole is an important contributor for Golden State, luxury tax considerations put his future with the organization in doubt. If he doesn’t reach an agreement on a rookie scale extension before the start of the upcoming season, he’ll be a restricted free agent in 2023.

“I’d watch out for the Magic to be ready to make an offer if he’s restricted, knowing there’s a good chance Golden State is not going to match,” the executive said.

The 23-year-old Poole is coming off his best season, averaging career highs with 18.5 points, 3.4 rebounds and 4.0 assists per game and making 51 starts for a team that won the NBA title. He would provide some much-needed perimeter scoring for a young Orlando team that solidified its frontcourt with Franz Wagner and Paolo Banchero in the last two drafts. The Magic could have close to $60MM in cap room and may be in range to add two max free agents.

There’s more from the Southeast Division:

  • Former NBA player Jamal Crawford is downplaying a dispute between new Hawks guard Dejounte Murray and Banchero in a pro-am game last week, tweets Landon Buford. “There’s no issues; they’re brothers, competitive basketball court stuff,” Crawford said. “I’ve had spats like that with my brothers. There’s nothing to read into.”
  • Hawks shooting guard Bogdan Bogdanovic has resumed training after knee surgery in May and recently posted Instagram photos of his workout with tennis star Novak Djokovic in Serbia. Bogdanovic was able to participate in Atlanta’s first-round playoff series against Miami, but underwent the operation shortly after the Hawks were eliminated.
  • Jaime Echenique received a huge welcome when he returned to Colombia last month after becoming the first player from his homeland to appear in an NBA game, writes Chase Hughes of NBC Sports Washington. Echenique played just one game for the Wizards in December and spent most of the season with the team’s Capital City G League affiliate. He recognizes the importance of his accomplishment, but is focused on expanding his NBA opportunities. “He said you have to take this as big as it is,” Echenique said in relaying a conversation with a friend. “Out of the 75 years of the NBA, out of 50 million Colombians, you are the first one. I was like ‘Yeah, that’s a big deal.’ Whether it was a 10-day [contract] or three minutes or whatever people want to call it, I did it.”