Cameron Payne

NBA D-League Assignments/Recalls: 3/24/17

Here are Friday’s D-League transactions:

  • The Bulls recalled Cameron Payne from Windy City, the team announced via press release. Payne has made nine NBA appearances since being acquired from OKC, scoring 54 points on 33.9% shooting in that span. In his most recent D-League stop, Payne scored 14 points with eight assists and seven rebounds in a win over the Iowa Energy.

NBA D-League Assignments/Recalls: 3/23/17

  • The Cavaliers recalled center Larry Sanders from their D-League affiliate, the Canton Charge, the team announced on its website. Sanders signed with Cleveland on March 13th after Andrew Bogut suffered a leg fracture. Sanders made a brief appearance in one game with the Cavs last week and also played a game with the Charge before his recall.
  • The Thunder assigned forward Josh Huestis to the Oklahoma City Blue, according to a team press release. Huestis is averaging 14.0 PPG and 6.3 RPG for the Blue, who play the Rio Grande Valley Vipers on Friday.
  • The Bulls assigned point guard Cameron Payne to the Windy City Bulls, according to the D-League team’s Twitter feed. Payne played against the Iowa Energy on Thursday and had 14 points and eight assists in 26 minutes.


NBA D-League Assignments/Recalls: 3/22/17

Here are Wednesday’s D-League assignments and recalls from around the NBA:

  • The Nuggets have assigned Malik Beasley to their D-League affiliate, the Sioux Falls Skyforce, according to a team press release. This will be Beasley’s sixth assignment this season.
  • The Bulls have recalled Cameron Payne from the Windy City Bulls, according to a team press release. Payne played for Chicago’s D-League affiliate on Tuesday, scoring 22 points in 25 minutes.
  • The Raptors have recalled Pascal Siakam from their D-League affiliate, the Raptors 905, according to the team’s Twitter feed. Siakam is one of several 2016 first-rounders whom have been sent to the D-League this season, as Luke Adams of Hoops Rumors details.
  • The Cavaliers have assigned Kay Felder to the Canton Charge, according to the team’s website. Felder has appeared in nine games for Cleveland’s D-League affiliate, scoring 30.4 points per game.
  • The Warriors have assigned Kevon Looney to the Santa Cruz Warriors, according to the team’s website. Looney has appeared in three games for the Warriors’ D-League affiliate this season.

NBA D-League Assignments/Recalls: 3/20/17

Here are the D-League transactions from Monday:

Central Notes: Bulls, Harris, Bucks, World Peace

Bulls coach Fred Hoiberg will have to decide soon whether to emphasize making the playoffs or developing young talent, writes Vincent Goodwill of CSNChicago. Chicago is coming off a terrible week, losing four straight games and slipping to 10th in the East. Hoiberg continues to experiment with different combinations, playing everyone but Nikola Mirotic in the first half of each game.

Last month’s five-player trade that sent Taj Gibson and Doug McDermott to Oklahoma City clouded the team’s direction, Goodwill writes, with newly acquired Cameron Payne now the team’s third “point guard of the future” since Dwyane Wade signed last summer. “We’re doing everything we can to compete to win, at the same time we have some young guys we wanna get on the floor. It’s a balance,” Hoiberg said. “It’s guys, we want to get them out there and see how they play then make a decision in the second half.”

There’s more from the Central Division:

  • The Pistons have climbed back to .500, sparked by the insertion of Tobias Harris into the starting lineup, notes Aaron McMann of MLive. Harris scored 28 points Saturday against the Knicks and helped Detroit build a comfortable early lead. “He came out really aggressive,” said teammate Marcus Morris. “It was good to have him back in the starting lineup. We know what he can do. We know how well he can score the ball. So, it’s not really surprising to us.”
  • The Bucks have named Steve Brandes president of their new D-League affiliate, the team announced on its website. The Oshkosh, Wisc., franchise will begin play next season.
  • At age 37, Metta World Peace has assumed the role of a mentor with the young Lakers. But the former Ron Artest still has strong regrets about the effect he had on the Pacers almost 13 years ago, writes Mark Montieth of Artest was suspended for the season after charging into the crowd in Detroit on November 19, 2004, to confront a fan. That effectively killed Indiana’s title chances and led to the breakup of a promising young team. “We were supposed to win a ring together,” World Peace recalls. “Everything revolved around me, because I was unstable. That’s what I feel bad about to this day. That’s something I can never, ever forgive myself for. It’s something I have to recognize. We were on our way. [GM] Donnie [Walsh] put a helluva team together. I wanted to win a championship here. That was a big thing to me. And to Reggie [Miller]. At my most unstable point, it was the end of Reggie’s career.”

Central Notes: Payne, Mirotic, Bucks, Parker

The Bulls had reportedly been seeking first-round picks in exchange for players like Taj Gibson and Doug McDermott prior to the trade deadline, but instead they sent both Gibson and McDermott to the Thunder – along with a second-rounder – for a package headlined by point guard Cameron Payne. As Shams Charania of The Vertical writes, the Bulls paid a hefty price for Payne, who is now hoping he can deliver on the team’s belief in him, calling the move to Chicago a “blessing in disguise.”

“It’s going to take time, but I want to be the guy for the Bulls’ future,” Payne told Charania. “I felt like OKC wanted something else, and I’m happy that Chicago felt the need to come trade for me. With what they gave up to get me, it meant a lot.”

Let’s round up a few more items from around the Central division…

  • Within the piece linked above, Charania also notes that the Bulls had “several serious discussions” about trading Nikola Mirotic prior to the deadline, and were seeking a first-round pick in return. Ultimately, Chicago hung onto Mirotic, and now the team will have to see if it can hang onto him in restricted free agency this July.
  • With the Knicks in Milwaukee on Wednesday, Derrick Rose acknowledged that the Bucks are somewhat intriguing as a potential free agent destination this summer, given Milwaukee’s proximity to his hometown and his family in Chicago. Marc Berman of The New York Post has the details, along with the quotes from Rose.
  • Speaking to reporters for the first time since going down with a torn ACL last month, Bucks forward Jabari Parker said today that he believes he can come back even stronger, according to Charles F. Gardner of The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. “I don’t want to be the same player,” said Parker, who is still on crutches. “I wouldn’t be myself if I don’t challenge myself to do better things, bigger things. … I know I can be better.” Parker, who said he hopes to play 40 or 50 games this season, will be eligible for an extension later this year, as I discussed earlier today.

Bulls Notes: Valentine, Payne, Wade

The Bulls didn’t end up shipping off Jimmy Butler at the deadline, as had been rumored, but that doesn’t mean they weren’t thinking about their future. General manager Gar Forman spoke with ESPN Chicago Friday about the organization heading forward. Forman noted that the trade the club did make (Taj Gibson and Doug McDermott for Cameron Payne, Anthony Morrow and Joffrey Lauvergne), will free up more time for rookie Denzel Valentine.

In the same conversation Forman reveals that they tried to trade for Payne on draft night last June but were unable to. He mentions that they “absolutely loved” him coming out of the draft and think he’ll be a player for their future.

Later in the discussion, when the topic turned to Fred Hoiberg, Forman said that he foresees the head coach coming back to in 2017/18. For more insights about the Bulls, consider listening to the full 20-minute chat at ESPN.

There’s more out of Chicago:

  • Veteran guard Dwyane Wade doesn’t have a clear read on whether or not the Bulls’ front office would want him to pick up his player option this summer and return to the team for 2017/18. “I haven’t had that conversation about next season with the guys,” he told Nick Friedell of ESPN. “[…] I take my option seriously and I always look into what’s the best thing for me to do.” For now, Wade adds, he just wants to play basketball.
  • The Bulls will have a better idea of what shape their rebuild will take this offseason, writes Neil Johnson of ESPN Analytics (Insider). Johnson asks if the Bulls can truly rebuild around Jimmy Butler or whether,  by retaining him, they’re delaying the inevitable.
  • For what it’s worth, Jimmy Butler told K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune that he has faith in the Bulls’ front office and is exactly where he wants to be.
  • Newly acquired guard Anthony Morrow caused a bit of a stir when it was announced that he’d wear No. 1 with his new club. The veteran quickly changed course when Bulls fans protested at the thought of him wearing Derrick Rose‘s former number.

Bulls Notes: Rondo, Butler, Hoiberg, Gibson

The Bulls don’t plan to buy out Rajon Rondo, tweets K.C. Johnson of The Chicago Tribune. GM Gar Forman confirmed that tonight, telling reporters the organization would rather hold onto the veteran point guard and use his contract as a trade chip in the offseason. Rondo signed a two-year deal with Chicago in July, but only $3MM of his $13,397,000 salary for next season is guaranteed before June 30. Rondo’s time with the Bulls has been a disappointment, as he was benched briefly, then relegated to the second unit. Although he has been effective in that role, there’s no guarantee it will continue after today’s trade for Cameron Payne.

There’s more post-deadline news out of Chicago:

  • The Celtics were willing to include one of the Nets’ first-rounders in trade talks for Jimmy Butler, but sources tell Johnson that Boston wanted to place protections on it (Twitter link). The scope of those protections was not released.
  • Bulls executive John Paxson says the organization wouldn’t commit to rebuilding without “certainty” and never got close to that in any of the offers for Butler (Twitter link). He acknowledges that trade discussions with the Celtics will probably start again by June, and insists Chicago’s playoff fate won’t factor into the decision on Butler (Twitter link).
  • Paxson hasn’t wavered in his support for coach Fred Hoiberg, saying there has been growth in his second season behind the bench (Twitter link).
  • The deal that sent Taj Gibson to Oklahoma City was made to create more playing time for Bobby Portis and Denzel Valentine (Twitter link). “When you’re trying to develop a team with young players, you need them to get on the floor,” Paxson said (Twitter link).
  • Gibson said he knew of eight teams that were trying to trade for him (Twitter link). “The hardest part was seeing people’s faces on the way out,” Gibson said in a radio interview. “It’s family.”
  • Gibson would consider coming back to Chicago “at the right price,” tweets Nick Friedell of He will be a free agent this summer after making $8.95MM this season. Gibson also indicated that he would consider being a coach with the Bulls when his playing days are finished (Twitter link).

Thunder Acquire Doug McDermott, Taj Gibson

6:44pm: The deal is official, according to press releases issued by both teams.

1:44 PM: The two teams are nearing a deal that will send Payne to Chicago and both McDermott and Gibson to OKC, according to Shams Charania of The Vertical (Twitter link). The Bulls will receive Anthony Morrow and Lauvergne in addition to Payne, while the Thunder will receive a 2018 second-round pick. Roberson is not involved in the deal.

1:28 PM: The Thunder and Bulls continue to have trade discussions regarding Doug McDermott and Taj Gibson, Marc Stein of relays (Twitter links). Frank Isola of the New York Daily News (Twitter links) hears that the two teams are closing in on a deal that will send McDermott to OKC in exchange for Andre Roberson and Cameron Payne.

Oklahoma City has been trying to figure out what a new deal for Roberson would look like in the offseason, Adrian Wojnarowski of The Vertical reports (Twitter link). Roberson will be a restricted free agent at the end of the season and a trade could signal that OKC feels the price tag will be too high. A Roberson trade is not imminent, as Vincent Goodwill of Comcast Sportsnet (Twitter link) hears that the deal could simply be Payne for McDermott.

The Thunder are exploring a trade that would bring both McDermott and Gibson to the team, according to Stein. Earlier today, we learned that the Bulls have been seeking a first-round pick in exchange for Gibson for quite some time. Oklahoma City has already shipped out a pair of future first-round picks in previous deals, so the first selection the franchise can trade is its 2022 pick. If OKC is to acquire both players, Stein (Twitter link) hears that it would take Payne, Joffrey Lauvergne, and draft compensation for the Bulls to oblige.

Gibson will be an unrestricted free agent after the season. The Bulls lost Pau Gasol to free agency last season and the experience has “motivated” to get something for Gibson rather than going through the same scenario once again this summer, K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune notes on Twitter.

Northwest Notes: Thunder, McCollum, Thibodeau

Though he’s played sparingly for the Thunder since making his return, the addition of Cameron Payne has made head coach Billy Donovan‘s job setting each game’s active lineup that much harder. With Payne in the mix, players like Kyle Singler and Semaj Christon have been inactive, writes Erik Horne of The Oklahoman.

Horne relays that Thunder coaches generally decide close to the morning shootaround which of their players will be inactive for the upcoming game. In some scenarios, as was recently the case with Victor Oladipo, those decisions are delayed until later in the day to accommodate for the fluctuating status of injured players.

As a coach you always want every guy to dress, for every guy to play and be available, but we can’t do that,” Donovan says. “The decisions are a little bit easier because of the kind of guys we have on our team.”

There’s more out of the Northwest Division:

  • Veteran Brandon Rush didn’t disappoint when called to produce for the Timberwolves, writes Kent Youngblood of the StarTribune. Rush’s ability to knock down threes and stretch the floor did not go unnoticed by his coach and teammates while he filled in for Zach LaVine. “That shows how valuable he is,” Minnesota big man Karl-Anthony Towns said. “And how professional he is, to be ready for the moment he was needed.” With LaVine’s status still uncertain, Rush could be featured prominently once again.
  • The Timberwolves are showing progress on the defensive end of late, Youngblood writes in a separate piece for the StarTribune. Youngblood cites the team’s eighth-best net rating (plus-2.3) since December 13 as a sign that things are turning around. “One game doesn’t solve everything for us,” says Tom Thibodeau, a head coach renowned for his defense. “But I like the direction we’re moving in now.”
  • At the halfway point of the 2016/17 campaign, Ryan McDonald of the Deseret News evaluates the Jazz. The team was considered a potential playoff contender during the offseason and McDonald concludes that thanks in part to the depth of their roster, Utah is not only on track to make the postseason for the first time since 2012, but to potentially claim home-court advantage in the first round.
  • It’s time to seriously consider C.J. McCollum among the league’s best shooters, says Zach Lowe for ESPN. Given McCollum’s first rate pull-up jumper, Lowe is ready to lump the Trail Blazers guard in with the likes of Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson and Kyle Korver.
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