Bruce Bowen

NBA G League Assignments/Recalls: 11/15/18

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

Clippers Not Retaining Bruce Bowen As TV Analyst Following Kawhi Criticism

Clippers television analyst Bruce Bowen won’t be returning for the 2018/19 season, reports ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski. According to Wojnarowski, the decision is believed to be related to Bowen’s comments criticizing Kawhi Leonard during Leonard’s standoff with the Spurs earlier in the offseason.

As Wojnarowski explains, even though Bowen was under contract with Fox Sports West and not the Clippers, the club has “significant input” in the hiring of its TV broadcast team, and “withheld approval” on a contract extension for Bowen. The two sides had been expected to move forward on a new deal before Bowen made those critical comments about Leonard, per Wojnarowski.

During an appearance on Sirius XM Radio in June (link via, Bowen suggested there was “nothing but excuses” coming from Leonard’s camp, adding that he felt Kawhi was getting “bad advice.”

“First, it was, ‘Well I was misdiagnosed,'” Bowen said of Leonard at the time. “Look here: You got $18MM this year, and you think that they’re trying to rush you? You didn’t play for the most part a full season this year. And you’re the go-to guy, you’re the franchise and you want to say that they didn’t have your best interest at heart? Are you kidding me?”

While personnel decisions related to television broadcasts typically don’t fall within Hoops Rumors’ purview, the Clippers’ apparent motivations here are of particular interest. As Wojnarowski observes, eliminating Bowen from their broadcast seems to be a “clear message” from the Clips about how they plan to “protect star players” within the organization.

The Clippers are poised to have a ton of cap room available during the summer of 2019, and will likely pursue Leonard – who reportedly wants to play in Los Angeles – along with other star free agents. Bowen’s dismissal from the club’s broadcast “speaks to the high-stakes repercussions” surrounding next year’s free agent class, Wojnarowski notes.