Bojan Bogdanovic

Reactions To Kings-Trail Blazers Trade

Today’s five-player trade with Portland is the start of an in-season reboot for the Kings, writes Jason Jones of The Athletic. Sacramento was willing to provide financial relief for the Trail Blazers by taking on the remainder of Kent Bazemore‘s $19.3MM expiring contract in the deal, which also netted Anthony Tolliver and a pair of future second-round picks.

By sending out three players in return, the Kings create roster flexibility that could be important in a potential trade of Dewayne Dedmon, Jones adds. The center, who signed a three-year, $40MM contract in free agency, lost his starting job after four games and has been vocal in his displeasure over a reduced role.

Jones notes that the deal is an admission that the summer’s free agency haul was a disappointment. Dedmon appears on the way out, and sending Trevor Ariza to Portland probably had to be done to make that happen. Jones relays that coach Luke Walton was fond of Ariza, but his contract is only partially guaranteed for next season so he may not have been part of the Kings’ future.

Jones believes anyone on Sacramento’s roster — apart from De’Aaron Fox, Marvin Bagley III and Buddy Hield — is a candidate to be traded by the February 6 deadline, even Bogdan Bogdanovic, who will be a restricted free agent this summer.

There’s more reaction to today’s trade announcement:

  • The Kings have been collecting second-rounders and were happy to add two more, observes James Ham of NBC Sports Bay Area. With the addition of Portland’s picks in 2024 and 2025, Sacramento now has 13 second-round selections over the next six seasons. Ham adds that the value of those picks could increase once the league lowers the age requirement for the draft to 18, which is expected by 2022.
  • The trade is a signal that the Blazers have decided to “punt” the rest of the season, claims John Canzano of The Oregonian. He calls it understandable considering Portland had the highest payroll in the league and no playoff hopes other than possibly snatching the eighth seed. He also questions why president of basketball operations Neil Olshey decided to blow up a roster that reached the Western Conference finals last year, trading Evan Turner to the Hawks for Bazemore and sending Meyers Leonard and Maurice Harkless to the Heat for Hassan Whiteside.
  • Jason Quick of the Athletic talked to Bazemore on Friday night about the possibility of being traded. Bazemore had been hoping for a long stay in Portland, but he took a wait-and-see approach after several weeks of hearing his name in trade rumors. “I’ve been around long enough now, man, another day in the life, bro,” he said. “I ain’t even thought about it, honestly. Been traded before … I just go out and ready to go and continue to get better and be my best when the time is right.”

And-Ones: Pacers, Favors, Zhou, Teodosic

The Pacers were thrilled to see Goga Bitadze still available when the team picked at No. 18, J. Michael of the Indianapolis Star relays. The scribe hears that many within the league were surprised Bitadze was still available at that spot. However, several executives told Michael that had they been running the Pacers, they wouldn’t have taken the center unless they planned on trading either Myles Turner or Domantas Sabonis.

Most of the executives Michael spoke to believe that if the team decides to trade either Turner and Sabonis, the latter will be the one to go. Turner is entering the first season of a four-year, $80MM contract, while Sabonis is entering the last year of his rookie deal.

Here’s more from around the league:

  • The Pelicans were Derrick Favors‘ preferred destination once it was clear the Jazz were moving him, Tony Jones of The Athletic tweets. Utah needed to trade Favors in order to accommodate the Bojan Bogdanovic signing.
  • Former Rockets center Zhou Qi plans to play in Europe next season, Emiliano Carchia of Sportando relays. Zhou has not yet picked a team.
  • Milos Teodosic will make slightly over €5MM during his three-year contract with Virtus Bologna, Carchia passes along in a separate piece. Teodosic last played for the Clippers during this past season.

Jazz Sign Bojan Bogdanovic To Four-Year Deal

JULY 7: The Jazz have made it official, announcing in a press release that they’ve signed Bogdanovic.

JUNE 30: The Jazz have agreed to a four-year, $73MM deal with free agent Bojan Bogdanovic, tweets Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN.

Bogdanovic scored a career-high 18 points per game last season with Indiana, also holding career-best shooting marks of 49.7% from the field and 42.5% from 3-point range. The Jazz have agreed to trade veteran forward Derrick Favors – who has a $17.65MM non-guaranteed salary – to New Orleans to clear space for the incoming forward.

Utah plans to add Bogdanovic, a talented offensive option on the wing, to a roster that already includes the likes of Mike Conley, Donovan Mitchell, Joe Ingles and Rudy Gobert.

In addition to Bogdanovic, the Jazz also agreed to a two-year, $10MM deal with free agent forward Ed Davis.

As for the Pacers, they pivoted away from Bogdanovic – and many of their other free agents – by agreeing to acquire T.J. Warren, Malcolm Brogdon, and Jeremy Lamb.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Jazz Emerging As Threat For Bojan Bogdanovic

JUNE 30, 12:33am: The Jazz are emerging as a significant threat to sign Bogdanovic, according to Tony Jones and Shams Charania of The Athletic (Twitter link). Sources tell the Athletic duo that Utah could have a competitive offer on the table for the free agent forward as soon as Sunday night.

JUNE 29, 8:08pm: The Jazz have “significant interest” in Pacers forward Bojan Bogdanovic, sources tell Tony Jones of The Athletic (Twitter link).

Bogdanovic is among the best shooters on the free agent market and would give Utah a significant threat on the perimeter. He shot a career-high .425 from 3-point range this year while averaging 18.0 points per game. He is also extremely durable, playing 80 and 81 games in his two seasons with Indiana.

With most of their rotation headed for free agency, the Pacers have hard decisions to make on who to keep, which could make Bogdanovic an easier target for someone else. Indiana’s situation was complicated by Friday’s unexpected retirement of starting point guard Darren Collison.

Free Agent Rumors: Knicks, Pelicans, Looney, Satoransky, More

Following up on recent reports that have linked the team to Julius Randle and Bobby Portis, Ian Begley of SNY.tv confirms that the Knicks will have “strong interest” in those young bigs if they can’t land their top free agent targets. However, as we’ve heard repeatedly in recent days, New York prefers not to offer contracts longer than two years to its secondary targets, according to Begley, who acknowledges that either Randle or Portis could get a longer-term offer from another team.

Begley also confirms that the Knicks have weighed the idea of pursuing DeMarcus Cousins in free agency, as was previously reported. According to Begley though, some in the organization have indicated that going after a younger player like Randle or Portis is a higher priority than pursuing Cousins, who is entering his age-29 season.

  • The Pelicans are among the teams expected to show interest in free agent big man Kevon Looney, writes former Sporting News reporter Sean Deveney (Facebook link). As Deveney notes, New Orleans will have cap flexibility and could use another veteran big man in the frontcourt with Anthony Davis and potentially Julius Randle departing.
  • Tomas Satoransky, who will become a restricted free agent after receiving a qualifying offer from the Wizards, is expected to receive interest from the Mavericks, Pacers, Magic, and Celtics, writes Chase Hughes of NBC Sports Washington. According to Hughes, the Jazz also had Satoransky on their list of targets before swinging a deal for Mike Conley. I’d imagine the Celtics would be out of the running as well if they can land Kemba Walker.
  • Appearing on a recent ESPN podcast with Zach Lowe, Brian Windhorst said he got word a month ago that the Spurs were interested in free agent forward Bojan Bogdanovic. As Windhorst notes though, San Antonio doesn’t have the cap room to make a play for Bogdanovic and would need to make a cost-cutting move for it to be a realistic possibility.

Free Agent Rumors: Dedmon, Birch, Beverley, Brogdon

Over the weekend, we passed along comments from ESPN’s Zach Lowe, who said during a podcast with colleagues Bobby Marks and Jonathan Givony that the Timberwolves have legit interest in D’Angelo Russell. Besides outlining Minnesota’s apparent plan for making a run at Russell, Lowe – and Marks – also shared a few more interesting tidbits on free agency, so let’s dive in and round up the highlights…

  • Hawks center Dewayne Dedmon has been receiving plenty of interest from teams as a mid-level target, according to Lowe, who refers to Dedmon as “sneakily the most coveted under-the-radar free agent in the league.”
  • Marks adds that Magic big man Khem Birch has also generated substantial interest, though he cautions that teams may not want to tie up cap room in an offer sheet for the RFA-to-be.
  • Lowe and Marks both believe Clippers point guard Patrick Beverley will do very well in free agency. After initially viewing Beverley as a mid-level type player, Marks now believes that the veteran could get an offer closer to $14-15MM per year.
  • Despite a history of foot issues that could limit his value to some extent, the Bucks are “bracing” for a big offer sheet for Malcolm Brogdon, per Lowe. If Brogdon gets a deal in the range of $20MM+ per year, Milwaukee may have to decide between becoming a taxpaying team or letting him go.
  • According to Lowe, the Bucks and Pacers have “walk-away” numbers for Brogdon and Bojan Bogdanovic, respectively, if the bidding gets too high, though he’s not sure what those specific numbers are.

And-Ones: Wiseman, Barrett, Dedmon, Barbosa, DeMarco

The latest 2020 mock draft has Memphis freshman center James Wiseman going to the Knicks with the No. 1 pick. ESPN’s Jonathan Givony has Georgia guard Anthony Edwards going to the Cavaliers at No. 2 and North Carolina guard Cole Anthony heading to the Suns at No. 3.

We have more from around the basketball world:

Pacers Rumors: Oladipo, Bitadze, Turner, Young

Speaking on Thursday night to reporters, including J. Michael of The Indianapolis Star, Pacers president of basketball operations Kevin Pritchard acknowledged that the team isn’t expecting to have Victor Oladipo ready to go to start the 2019/20 season. Oladipo continues to recover from the torn quad tendon he suffered in January.

“I’m hopeful that he’s going to be back in December, January,” Pritchard said of Oladipo. “To put a true timeline is not really fair.”

Here are several more Pacers notes worth passing along:

  • First-round pick Goga Bitadze will join the Pacers right away rather than being stashed overseas, Michael writes. “Of any of the guys we’ve drafted in the last few years, I think he’s more polished and ready to play in an NBA game than a normal kid coming out of college,” Pritchard said of the Georgian center.
  • While the Pacers are committed to playing Myles Turner and Domantas Sabonis together, with one of the two at power forward, the team will have trade options available, Michael writes. Multiple league sources have told Michael that no one on Indiana’s roster is really untouchable, though he doesn’t expect the team to move Turner, as he tweeted prior to the draft.
  • Bojan Bogdanovic remains the Pacers’ top priority in free agency, while Thaddeus Young appears less likely to be retained, per Michael.
  • Pritchard expects to be active in free agency as the Pacers look to fill out their roster, Michael relays. “We’ve got a lot of holes to fill. We’re going to have a lot of money to go out into the marketplace,” Pritchard said. “July 1 is going to be where the real dirty work starts. We got to make some hay in free agency.”
  • More from Pritchard, via Michael: “We’ll try to be a good team next year. We’re not going to go young and try to start at the bottom. We want to win again.”

Lakers Notes: Davis, Kuzma, LeBron, Free Agents

The Lakers would have benefited by waiting longer, but it appears their deal with the Pelicans for Anthony Davis will be completed when the moratorium ends July 6, tweets ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski. He adds that there’s still a chance it won’t be finalized until July 30, which would enable L.A. to operate over the cap and count its No. 4 pick, which is headed to New Orleans, as salary. As Wojnarowski explains in a full story, the Lakers would have $32.5MM in cap room to chase free agents under that scenario, but only $27.8MM if the trade becomes official earlier.

That figure would be reduced even further if Davis insists on a $4MM trade kicker, which he has the option to waive. Accepting it would leave L.A. with just $23.8MM, not nearly enough to compete for an elite free agent. Wojnarowski notes that delaying the deal wouldn’t benefit the Pelicans, who would have $19MM in cap space if the trade becomes official July 6, but only $15MM if they have to wait until July 30.

There’s more Lakers news to pass along:

  • The Pelicans wanted Kyle Kuzma to be included in the deal, but the Lakers opted to part with future first-round picks so they could keep him, according to Tania Ganguli and Broderick Turner of The Los Angeles Times. Kuzma, who posted an 18.7/5.5/2.5 line in his second NBA season, was among the players rumored to be on the table when the teams negotiated in February.
  • Lakers GM Rob Pelinka had to make four phone calls yesterday before Pelicans executive David Griffin responded, Turner tweets. Pelinka’s willingness to include three first-round picks turned out to be too enticing for New Orleans to pass up.
  • The Lakers’ last attempt to combine two stars failed because of a personality conflict between Kobe Bryant and Dwight Howard, but Ben Golliver of The Washington Post doesn’t believe that will happen this time. Davis already has a good relationship with LeBron James, appearing on his HBO show “The Shop,” and James has an added incentive to make the partnership work because they share the same agent in Rich Paul.
  • The Lakers will be seeking low-cost veterans to round out their roster, which might be good news for Reggie Bullock, observes Kevin Pelton of ESPN. Bullock, who was acquired from the Pistons at the trade deadline, has a cap hold of just $4.8MM. L.A. holds his full Bird rights and can exceed the cap to re-sign him.
  • If the Lakers don’t land a third star in free agency, they will likely pursue another shooter such as J.J. Redick, Seth Curry or Bojan Bogdanovic, suggests Eric Pincus of Bleacher Report.

Woj’s Latest: Durant, Conley, Pacers, Draft Rumors

On Tuesday night, we relayed a pair of rumors from ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, who said on the network’s televised mock draft special that the Lakers, Mavericks, and Knicks are among the teams interested in pursuing point guard Kemba Walker, but also cautioned that the Lakers aren’t considered frontrunners for any top free agents.

During ESPN’s draft special, Wojnarowski offered up several more tidbits worth passing along, so we’ll round them up in the space below (all links via Sagar Trika unless otherwise indicated):

  • Picking up his 2019/20 player option with the Warriors is probably a “last resort” for Kevin Durant, since he should still receive maximum-salary or near-max offers as a free agent, Wojnarowski said this morning on Get Up (video link via ESPN). We heard on Tuesday that Durant’s Achilles injury isn’t expected to deter suitors, even if it keeps him out for all of next season. Marc Berman of The New York Post confirmed today that the Knicks remain very interested in signing Durant.
  • Wojnarowski identifies the Jazz, Pacers, and Celtics as potential suitors for trade candidate Mike Conley (Twitter link). Of course, Boston would only make sense as a trade partner for the Grizzlies if Kyrie Irving leaves.
  • According to Wojnarowski, the Pacers are interested in bringing back Bojan Bogdanovic and would also like to re-sign Thaddeus Young, assuming the price is right (Twitter link).
  • The Hawks are a team to watch on draft night and may be a candidate to move up to No. 5, in Wojnarowski’s view (Twitter links). Woj expects GM Travis Schlenk to be creative and would be surprised if Atlanta ends up using both the No. 8 and No. 10 overall picks.
  • Even if the Suns and Bulls draft point guards with their first-round picks, they’d each likely try to sign a veteran in free agency, says Wojnarowski (Twitter link).
  • The Thunder are in “absolute win-now mode,” and Wojnarowski believes they’ll be aggressive with the No. 21 pick in trade talks (Twitter link).