Cameron Johnson

Suns Sign Cameron Johnson, Ty Jerome, Jalen Lecque

First-round pick Cameron Johnson has signed his rookie scale contract with Phoenix, according to the NBA’s transactions log.

The Suns selected the sharpshooting forward out of North Carolina with the No. 11 pick after trading down from No. 6 in a deal with the Timberwolves. The move represented the biggest surprise in the lottery.

[RELATED: 2019 NBA Draft Pick Signings]

Terms of Johnson’s contract weren’t announced, but under the rookie scale he is eligible to earn $4,033,440, $4,235,160, $4,437,000 and $5,887,899 in his first four seasons.

Phoenix also signed the 24th pick, Ty Jerome, who was acquired in a trade with the Celtics, and Jalen Lecque, who agreed to sign with the Suns shortly after he went undrafted (Twitter link). Like Johnson, Jerome will get a standard rookie scale contract, but terms of Lecque’s deal aren’t known.

Suns Acquire Saric, Johnson From Wolves For Culver

JULY 6: The Timberwolves have officially acquired the draft rights to No. 6 pick Jarrett Culver in exchange for Saric and the rights to No. 11 pick Cameron Johnson, the team announced today in a press release.

JUNE 20: The Timberwolves and Suns have reached an agreement on a trade, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, who reports (via Twitter) that Minnesota is moving up to No. 6. In exchange for the sixth overall pick, Phoenix is receiving Dario Saric and the No. 11 overall pick, says Woj.

It’s the second trade agreement of the day for the Suns, who also reached a deal to send T.J. Warren and the No. 32 pick to the Pacers. Saric will help fill in the gap in the frontcourt created by Warren’s departure, slotting in as a stretch four alongside franchise center Deandre Ayton.

Saric, 25, averaged 10.6 PPG and 5.6 RPG with a .437/.365/.880 shooting line last season in 81 games for the Sixers and Timberwolves. He was part of the package Philadelphia sent to Minnesota in exchange for Jimmy Butler, and has now been dealt twice in the last year.

Meanwhile, new Timberwolves head of basketball operations Gersson Rosas, who wasn’t part of the front office when the team acquired Saric last fall, is showing right away that he’s not afraid to be aggressive. Minnesota is now in position to potentially draft one of the top point guards of the 2019 class — with the Hawks expected to draft De’Andre Hunter at No. 4, at least one of Darius Garland or Coby White should still be on the board at No. 6.

There have been rumors in recent weeks linking the Timberwolves to point guards, since Tyus Jones and Derrick Rose are headed for free agency and Jeff Teague is entering the final year of his contract. We’ll have to wait to see what Rosas has in mind for the No. 6 pick though.

According to Wojnarowski (via Twitter), Rosas had been trying to move up to No. 4 or No. 5 before ultimately reaching a deal with the Suns for No. 6.

Draft-Night Notes: Bazley, Thunder, Bulls, Suns

Some teams holding mid-first-round picks have expressed interest in forward Darius Bazley and he could go earlier than projected, Jeff Zillgitt of USA Today tweets. A McDonald’s All-American, Bazley didn’t go to college and instead spent the year preparing for the draft.

We have more draft nuggets:

  • The Thunder are engaged in trade talk with teams to move back in first round from the No. 21 pick, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski tweets.
  • The Bulls didn’t shop shooting guard Zach LaVine when they explored ways to move up in the lottery, K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune tweets. Chicago wound up holding onto the No. 7 pick and selecting North Carolina point guard Coby White. LaVine has three years and $58.5MM remaining on his contract.
  • The Suns’ selection of North Carolina power forward Cameron Johnson at No. 11 after trading down from the No. 6 pick earlier in the day was the surprise of the lottery. According to SInow’s Jake Fischer, it was an even bigger surprise due to injury concerns. Several teams red-flagged Johnson out of the first round due to his history of ailments on both hips (Twitter link).
  • The Sixers are trying to move up from the No. 24 pick, Keith Pompey of the Philadelphia Inquirer tweets. They’re hoping to snag either UNC small forward Nassir Little or USC shooting guard Kevin Porter Jr. and could wind up with one of them even if they don’t make a deal, Pompey adds.

Atlantic Notes: Sixers, Draft, Anunoby

The Sixers want to select someone in the mold of Landry Shamet with the No. 24 overall pick.

“[Shamet has] always been an overcomer and mature and very very self-aware,” senior director of scouting Vince Rozman said (via Keith Pompey of the Philadelphia Inquirer). “…I think those are the guys that tend to make it in that range, because they know their role and they know what’s going to be asked of them.”

Pompey suggests that Cameron Johnson fits the profile and speculates that the UNC product may slip in the draft because of his age. Johnson turned 23 in March.

Here’s more from the Atlantic Division:

Draft Updates: Bol, Claxton, Norvell, Green Room

As expected, Oregon center Bol Bol held a Pro Day on Wednesday in Los Angeles, according to ESPN’s Jonathan Givony, who tweets that about a dozen NBA teams attended the event, including five general managers. Bol, who is viewed as one of the draft’s biggest high-risk, high-reward prospects, is coming back from surgery on his left foot and wanted to use the Pro Day to ease concerns about his health, says Givony.

Givony adds that Bol showed on Wednesday why he’s considered a top-five prospect in terms of talent, and Sam Vecenie of The Athletic (Twitter link) also hears from teams that the young big man looked good. However, Vecenie points out that the questions about Bol weren’t going to get answered in a non-contact open gym setting. He remains one of the draft’s most intriguing wild cards.

Here are a few more draft-related updates:

  • Georgia big man Nicolas Claxton has canceled and shut down all of his workouts for non-lottery teams, a source tells Vecenie (Twitter link). Claxton, who ranks 29th on ESPN’s big board, feels good about where he’ll be picked based on the feedback he’s received so far, per Vecenie.
  • Gonzaga guard Zach Norvell Jr., the 63rd prospect on ESPN’s big board, said today he’s been told he’s projected to be drafted in the 20-40 range, tweets Rod Beard of The Detroit News. Norvell also said that he’s had 15 workouts during the pre-draft process (Twitter link).
  • Two more draft prospects have been invited to the Green Room for next Thursday’s event, according to reports. Jonathan Givony of ESPN.com tweets that Georgian center Goga Bitadze has received an invite, while Evan Daniels of 247Sports.com adds Keldon Johnson (Kentucky) to the list (Twitter link). Sixteen other Green Room invitees were previously reported.
  • In addition to his previously-reported workouts, Cameron Johnson (UNC) has auditioned for the Timberwolves, Celtics, Thunder, Sixers, and Warriors, tweets Gery Woelfel of Woelfel’s Press Box.
  • ESPN’s Jonathan Givony, Mike Schmitz, and Kevin Pelton (Insider link) named several of their favorite draft sleepers, singling out Grant Williams (Tennessee), Dylan Windler (Belmont), and Zylan Cheatham (Arizona State), among others.

Southeast Notes: Wizards, Hayes, Heat, Draft

The Wizards will work out six prospects on Wednesday, according to the team’s website. Bryce Brown (Auburn), Harry Froling (Marquette 2018), Jessie Govan (Georgetown), Frank Howard (Syracuse), Anthony Lee (Kutztown), and Myles Stephens (Princeton) will all participate in drills for Washington.

Here’s more from around the Southeast Division:

  • The Heat have invited Jaxson Hayes for a workout, according to Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald. However, the big man has no plans to visit Miami, as he’s expected to be selected before the Heat pick at No. 13.
  • Charles Cooke has worked out for the Heat, Jackson writes in the same piece. Cooke, who went undrafted out of Dayton in 2017, is in play for the team’s summer league team.
  • The Heat gave Duncan Robinson a $250K guarantee and Yante Maten a $100K guarantee in their respective contracts with the team, Jackson relays (same piece). Both players have trigger dates down the line that would bring additional guaranteed salary.
  • The Magic have worked out Cameron Johnson (UNC) and Kris Clyburn (UNLV), according to Josh Robbins of The Athletic (Twitter link). Orlando has the Nos. 16 and 46 overall picks in the draft.

Bucks Notes: Kaminsky, Lopez, Hill, Giannis

In the market for a big man who could stretch the floor at the trade deadline, the Bucks made an effort to acquire Frank Kaminsky from the Hornets, but were turned down, sources tell Sean Deveney of Sporting News. Having missed out on Kaminsky, Milwaukee instead sent a handful of second-round picks to New Orleans to acquire Nikola Mirotic.

With Mirotic and Brook Lopez both headed for unrestricted free agency this summer, however, Deveney expects the Bucks to circle back to Kaminsky, who will be eligible for restricted free agency. Milwaukee’s ability to land him will depend on a number of factors, including how serious the Hornets are about re-signing him and what happens with the Bucks’ own free agent bigs. Still, it’s a potential pairing to watch, particularly if Kaminsky becomes unrestricted and is available at a discount.

Here’s more on the Bucks:

  • In a separate article for Sporting News, Deveney previewed the Bucks’ offseason, suggesting that the team will make Khris Middleton its top priority in free agency this summer over Lopez, Malcolm Brogdon, and others.
  • After the Bucks’ season ended last weekend, Lopez said he’d “love to be back,” while George Hill – who is expected to be waived to avoid his full $19MM guarantee – said that money has never been the most important factor for him in free agency, as Malika Andrews of ESPN.com relays.
  • In an interesting piece for The Athletic, Eric Nehm spoke to Giannis Antetokounmpo about what the Bucks star learned during his first extended playoff run, and how he’ll apply those lessons going forward. “There are so many things I thought were tough in the regular season,” Antetokounmpo said after playing three rounds of postseason basketball. “They’re not.”
  • The Bucks recently worked out UNC forward Cameron Johnson, per Gery Woelfel of Woelfel’s Press Box (via Twitter). The 21st player on ESPN’s big board, Johnson may no longer be available by the time Milwaukee picks at No. 30.

Knicks Notes: Irving, Barrett, L.A., Pro Day

Free agency has not even begun, so this list is by no means set in stone, but as we sit here this evening, there appear to be four teams with a realistic shot of landing Kyrie Irving this summer – the Celtics, Knicks, Nets, and Lakers. For what it’s worth, Irving’s head coach from high school, Kevin Boyle, believes that Irving will sign with the Knicks, per Ian Begley of SportsNet New York.

“I think there’s a good chance in my opinion that Kyrie ends up here [in New York],” Boyle said. “In my gut, I would think that would work best for him and I would think that [the Knicks] have a really strong chance of that happening.”

Boyle made it clear that he was speaking as a fan and not someone who knows what Irving’s plans are this offseason, but this a man who spent time with Irving on the basketball floor and may have a better idea of what he’s thinking than some other pundits.

Irving will likely be one of the top candidates on the free agent market this summer after being named All-NBA Second Team earlier today, despite reports of some teams having second thoughts about adding him to their roster.

There’s more news from the Knicks:

  • In his conversation with Begley, Boyle adds that R.J. Barrett, the presumptive pick of the Knicks with the No. 3 overall pick in this summer’s draft and another player that Boyle coached in high school, should be in the conversation with Zion Williamson as the best NBA prospect in the 2019 Draft.
  • With the Lakers quickly overtaking the Knicks as the most dysfunctional franchise in the NBA, the Knicks have an opportunity to entice free agents without having to overcome the Lakers’ mystique, opines Frank Isola of The Athletic.
  • In more news from Ian Begley of SNY (Twitter link), the Knicks are among a large contingent of teams attending a joint Pro Day for Arkansas’ Daniel Gafford and North Carolina’s Cameron Johnson in Miami on June 7. Johnson is currently the No. 22-ranked prospect by ESPN, while Gafford comes in at No. 38.

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.

Full List Of 2019 NBA Draft Combine Participants

The NBA has revealed its list of 66 players who have been invited to next week’s draft combine in Chicago and who are expected to attend. The combine will take place from May 15-19.

While a small handful of top prospects often skip the event, that won’t be the case this year — Zion Williamson and Ja Morant are on the league’s list of 66 names, along with R.J. Barrett, Cam Reddish, Jarrett Culver, Darius Garland, De’Andre Hunter, and many more. Of course, those top prospects may not participate fully in all of the workouts and scrimmages at the combine.

A few more names figure to be added to this list, as a select number of the 40 draft-eligible prospects participating in the G League Elite Camp earlier in the week are expected to receive invites to the combine.

Here’s the full list of 66 names announced by the NBA today, in alphabetical order:

  1. Nickeil Alexander-Walker, G, Virginia Tech (sophomore)
  2. R.J. Barrett, G/F, Duke (freshman)
  3. Charles Bassey, C, Western Kentucky (freshman)
  4. Darius Bazley, F, Princeton HS (OH) (N/A)
  5. Bol Bol, C, Oregon (freshman)
  6. Jordan Bone, G, Tennessee (junior)
  7. Brian Bowen, F, USA (born 1998)
  8. Ky Bowman, G, Boston College (junior)
  9. Ignas Brazdeikis, F, Michigan (freshman)
  10. Moses Brown, C, UCLA (freshman)
  11. Brandon Clarke, F, Gonzaga (junior)
  12. Nicolas Claxton, F, Georgia (sophomore)
  13. Jarrett Culver, G/F, Texas Tech (sophomore)
  14. Luguentz Dort, G, Arizona State (freshman)
  15. Devon Dotson, G, Kansas (freshman)
  16. Carsen Edwards, G, Purdue (junior)
  17. Bruno Fernando, F, Maryland (sophomore)
  18. Daniel Gafford, F/C, Arkansas (sophomore)
  19. Darius Garland, G, Vanderbilt (freshman)
  20. Quentin Grimes, G, Kansas (freshman)
  21. Kyle Guy, G, Virginia (junior)
  22. Jaylen Hands, G, UCLA (sophomore)
  23. Jaxson Hayes, F/C, Texas (freshman)
  24. Tyler Herro, G, Kentucky (freshman)
  25. Jaylen Hoard, F, Wake Forest (freshman)
  26. Talen Horton-Tucker, G, Iowa State (freshman)
  27. De’Andre Hunter, F, Virginia (sophomore)
  28. Ty Jerome, G, Virginia (junior)
  29. Cameron Johnson, G, UNC (senior)
  30. Keldon Johnson, F, Kentucky (freshman)
  31. Mfiondu Kabengele, C, Florida State (sophomore)
  32. Louis King, F, Oregon (freshman)
  33. Romeo Langford, G, Indiana (freshman)
  34. Dedric Lawson, F, Kansas (junior)
  35. Jalen Lecque, G, Brewster Academy (NH) (N/A)
  36. Nassir Little, F, UNC (freshman)
  37. Charles Matthews, G, Michigan (junior)
  38. Jalen McDaniels, F, San Diego State (sophomore)
  39. Ja Morant, G, Murray State (sophomore)
  40. Zach Norvell Jr., G, Gonzaga (sophomore)
  41. Jaylen Nowell, G, Washington (sophomore)
  42. Jordan Nwora, F, Louisville (sophomore)
  43. Chuma Okeke, F, Auburn (sophomore)
  44. KZ Okpala, F, Stanford (sophomore)
  45. Miye Oni, G/F, Yale (junior)
  46. Eric Paschall, F, Villanova (senior)
  47. Shamorie Ponds, G, St. John’s (junior)
  48. Jordan Poole, G, Michigan (sophomore)
  49. Jontay Porter, F, Missouri (sophomore)
  50. Kevin Porter Jr, G, USC (freshman)
  51. Neemias Queta, C, Utah State (freshman)
  52. Cam Reddish, F, Duke (freshman)
  53. Naz Reid, C, LSU (freshman)
  54. Isaiah Roby, F, Nebraska (junior)
  55. Luka Samanic, F, Croatia (born 2000)
  56. Admiral Schofield, G, Tennessee (senior)
  57. Simisola Shittu, F, Vanderbilt (freshman)
  58. Killian Tillie, F, Gonzaga (junior)
  59. PJ Washington, F, Kentucky (sophomore)
  60. Tremont Waters, G, LSU (sophomore)
  61. Quinndary Weatherspoon, G, Missippi State (senior)
  62. Coby White, G, UNC (freshman)
  63. Kris Wilkes, G, UCLA (sophomore)
  64. Grant Williams, F, Tennessee (junior)
  65. Zion Williamson, F, Duke (freshman)
  66. Dylan Windler, G, Belmont (senior)

Rui Hachimura (Gonzaga) and Matisse Thybulle (Washington) are among the potential first-round picks who aren’t on the NBA’s list of combine participants, as noted by Jeremy Woo of SI.com and ESPN’s Jonathan Givony (Twitter links).