Cassius Winston

Summer League Commitments: Hawks, Kings, Mavericks, Sixers

Free agent swingman Chandler Hutchison has agreed to play summer league with the Hawks, a league source told Hoops Rumors. Hutchison has spent time with the Bulls, Wizards and Suns since being drafted with the 22nd overall pick in 2018.

The 26-year-old joined Phoenix on a two-way contract this past season. Upon being waived in January, he joined the Heat’s G League affiliate, where he averaged 11.4 points in 20 games.

There’s more summer league news tonight:

  • The Kings have received a commitment from guard DJ Steward to play in Las Vegas, a source told Hoops Rumors. Steward attended training camp with the team in the fall. He averaged 14.6 points per game in the G League this season.
  • Former Boise State star Derrick Alston Jr. will play summer league with the Mavericks, Hoops Rumors has learned. Alston played for the Jazz’s G League affiliate this season, averaging 18.4 points and 6.4 rebounds per game.
  • The Sixers are adding Cassius Winston and Justin Smith to their summer league roster, according to sources. Winston, 24, has spent time with the Wizards on a two-way contract, while Smith, 23, briefly played for the Raptors’ G League affiliate this past season.

Southeast Notes: Bamba, Wizards, Winston, Todd, Hawks

Magic center Mohamed Bamba, who is eligible for restricted free agency this summer, hopes to stick around in Orlando long term, writes Khobi Price of the Orlando Sentinel.

“I want to be here,” Bamba said of his NBA future. “I just want to make that clear. I’ll let that stuff handle itself and continue to work.”

As Price details, Bamba enjoyed his best year as a pro during the 2021/22 NBA season, averaging a career-best 10.6 PPG, 8.1 RPG, 1.7 BPG and 1.2 APG across a career-most 25.7 MPG as a starter alongside fellow big man Wendell Carter Jr., who was drafted one slot behind Bamba in 2018. Bamba also did a good job protecting the rim, Price notes. A career 68.5% free-throw shooter, the 7’0″ Bamba also connected on a career-best 78.1% from the charity stripe on a modest 1.0 attempts per game.

There’s more out of the Southeast Division:

  • After a disappointing 35-47 season, the Wizards face a fascinating summer. Bobby Marks of ESPN (Insider link) provides a thorough preview of Washington’s offseason, contending that it all starts at finding a reliable point guard to play alongside shooting guard Bradley Beal, who could decline his $36.5MM player option this summer and enter free agency. Center Thomas Bryant will also be an unrestricted free agent. Marks notes that, when it comes to assets, the team possesses 10 tradable player contracts and a lottery pick in the upcoming draft.
  • Wizards head coach Wes Unseld Jr. intends to monitor the development of the team’s two most recent second-round selections, reserve point guard Cassius Winston and backup forward Isaiah Todd, writes Chase Hughes of NBC Sports Washington“It’s a big offseason for those two,” Unseld said. “It’s a big offseason for all of our young guys. You’re going to have a season of ebbs and flows. Consistency is the thing we’re searching for and that’s one thing that young players at times have difficulty with… I thought Cash had some really good moments. Not a ton of sample size with the Wizards, but even with [Washington’s NBAGL affiliate the Capital City Go-Go]. Both he and Isaiah had big games and great opportunities to learn and grow.” Winston averagd 12.7 PPG and 4.6 APG as a reserve with the Go-Go, while Todd logged 12.1 PPG and 5.2 RPG for Washington’s G League club.
  • While the Hawks won Game 3 on Friday to pull to within 2-1 in their first-round series, the Heat’s performance so far is showing Atlanta what the team still needs in order to make consistently deep playoff runs, writes Chris Kirschner of The Athletic. Kirschner opines that finding a great perimeter defender needs to be a top priority for the Hawks in their roster-building, as Miami All-Star small forward Jimmy Butler has largely been dominant against Atlanta wings De’Andre Hunter, Bogdan Bogdanovic and Kevin Huerter.

Wizards Re-Sign Cassius Winston To Two-Way Deal

The Wizards have re-signed point guard Cassius Winston to a two-way contract, Fred Katz of The Athletic tweets.

Winston, who also played on a two-way deal last season, was a restricted free agent this month after the team extended him a qualifying offer. That qualifying offer was the equivalent of another two-way contract with a $50K partial guarantee, so it’s possible Winston simply accepted it.

The No. 53 overall pick in the 2020 draft, Winston appeared in 22 games off the bench as a rookie. The former Michigan State star averaged 1.9 PPG in 4.5 MPG. He also played in one postseason game.

Washington’s other two-way slot is also available.

Southeast Notes: Bamba, Oubre, Gill, Wizards

Mohamed Bamba won’t play for the Magic when Summer League starts on Sunday, but he’s practicing with his teammates in Las Vegas, writes Chris Hays of The Orlando Sentinel. The third-year center got a path to regular minutes for the first time in his career when Orlando unloaded its veteran centers last spring and turned the position over to Bamba and Wendell Carter Jr.

“For me it was no-brainer,” Bamba said of his decision to come to Las Vegas. “We got a new coach, new system, new guys and I just wanted to get well acclimated way before training camp.”

Jamahl Mosley, who has taken over as head coach, said this week that it was encouraging to see Bamba join the team on his own. Bamba said he’s looking forward to playing under Mosley.

“He’s made it clear that my presence (on the floor) is needed, is wanted and it’s just all about getting out there and putting in the right amount of work,” Bamba said. “Practicing with the team only helps the chemistry of the team. Coming out here … I had a choice, either to stay in Orlando and work with the coaches that didn’t come to Summer League or come here and add in these good deposits from the team.”

There’s more from the Southeast Division:

  • Free agent forward Kelly Oubre received offers from eight other teams before deciding to sign with the Hornets, tweets Stefan Bondy of The New York Daily News. Oubre’s agent, Torrel Harris of Unique Sports International Management, says the Knicks, Lakers, Clippers, Bucks, Nuggets, Nets, Trail Blazers and Cavaliers all presented offers to Oubre.
  • Today marked the guarantee date for Wizards power forward Anthony Gill, tweets Fred Katz of The Athletic. Gill will make $1,517,981 in 2021/22, giving Washington 13 fully guaranteed contracts. That doesn’t include center Daniel Gafford, whose $1,782,621 won’t be guaranteed until the league-wide guarantee date of January 7.
  • Wizards Summer League players Cassius Winston, Issuf Sanon and Isaiah Todd have all been placed in the NBA’s health and safety protocols, according to Chase Hughes of NBC Sports Washington (Twitter link). Their replacements include former NBA players Cheick Diallo and Derrick Walton Jr. (Twitter link)

Wizards Issue QOs To Mathews, Winston; Will Make Bonga UFA

The Wizards will not issue a qualifying offer to Isaac Bonga, thereby making him an unrestricted free agent, reports ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski (via Twitter).

The 6’8″ point forward saw his playing time cut nearly in half from the 2019/2020 season to last year. Despite the flashes of potential he showed, the Wizards now find themselves with a logjam of forwards, and Bonga appears to be the odd man out. His QO would’ve been worth about $2.08MM.

The Wizards are, however, extending qualifying offers to guards Garrison Mathews and Cassius Winston, according to a tweet from The Athletic’s Fred Katz. Both players finished the season on two-way contracts with Washington.

Mathews, who went undrafted in 2019, was a revelation as a feisty sharp-shooter for the Wizards this season, and even started 24 games. Winston, last year’s No. 53 overall pick, wasn’t able to crack Washington’s rotation in a major way during his rookie year, but the accomplished collegiate point guard has potential as a shooter and pick and roll play-maker, and the Wizards have need of guards.

Mathews’ qualifying offer will be a standard minimum-salary contract with a small partial guarantee, while Winston’s will be another two-way deal.

Wizards Notes: Brooks, Bertans, Winston, Hachimura, Avdija

Wizards head coach Scott Brooks doesn’t think the All-Star Game should be played this season, Fred Katz of The Athletic tweets. The league and the National Basketball Players Association agreed to hold it in Atlanta next month.

“I saw (LeBron James‘) thoughts on it. I agree. I’m upset,” Brooks said. “I love Atlanta, but I don’t want to go. I’ve been to two All-Star Games…and I don’t want to go. I agree with him.”

We have more on the Wizards:

  • Davis Bertans re-signed with the club for five years and $80MM in November, but his 3-point stroke has been off this season. Katz breaks down Bertans’ struggles in an in-depth Athletic story. Bertans is shooting 33.1% from long range after making 42% of his attempts the past two seasons and it appears he still doesn’t have his legs under him, according to Katz.
  • Rookie guard Cassius Winston has been transferred to the Erie BayHawks to play in the G League season in Orlando, the team tweets. Washington’s G League team, the Capital City Go-Go, is not participating in the event. The second-round pick out of Michigan State has appeared in six NBA games and will receive much-needed playing time in Orlando.
  • Prior to Washington’s 27-point loss to Miami on Friday, second-year forward Rui Hachimura and rookie forward Deni Avdija appeared to be trending in the right direction after the team’s COVID-19 pause, Ava Wallace of the Washington Post writes.

Wizards Sign Cassius Winston To Two-Way Contract

12:42pm: It’s a one-year contract, according to The Athletic’s Fred Katz (Twitter link).

7:31 am: The Wizards have signed former Michigan State point guard Cassius Winston to his first NBA contract, inking him to a two-way deal, according to the league’s official transactions log.

Winston, who spent a full four-year college career with the Spartans, is coming off a 2019/20 season in which he averaged 18.6 PPG, 5.9 APG, and 2.5 RPG with a shooting line of .448/.432/.852 in 30 games (32.7 MPG).

The No. 53 overall pick in the 2020 draft, Winston was technically selected by Oklahoma City, but was sent to Washington in a draft-night trade.

Winston will join guard Garrison Mathews to fill the Wizards’ two-way contract slots, as our tracker shows.

Thunder Acquire Schofield, Second-Rounder Krejci From Wizards

NOVEMBER 19: The Thunder also acquired Admiral Schofield from Washington in the deal, which is now official, according to a tweet from the Wizards.


NOVEMBER 18: The Wizards selected guard Vit Krejci with the No. 37 but they’re trading him to the Thunder, Shams Charania of The Athletic tweets. Washington will receive the No. 53 pick in this draft plus additional compensation, Ben Standig of The Athletic tweets.

The Wizards used that pick on Michigan State point guard Cassius Winston. Winston led the Spartans to the Final Four as a junior and averaged 18.6 PPG and 5.9 APG as a senior.

The additional competition will be a future second-rounder, David Aldridge of The Athletic tweets.

Krejci of the Czech Republic won’t be able to play in the NBA in the near future. While playing for the Spanish team Casademont Zaragoza, the 20-year-old Krejci suffered an ACL injury that required surgery in early October. He’s a member of the Czech Republic national team and projects as a 6’8” combo guard.

Central Notes: Winston, Pistons, McConnell, Avdija

Pistons general manager Troy Weaver is bullish on the NBA potential of second-round 2020 draft prospect Cassius Winston, a Michigan State guard, per Rod Beard of The Detroit News“I’ve watched him throughout his career and I’ve been a big fan and hoping for the best,” Weaver said. “I think he has the spirit, that he’ll fight his way in, whether he gets drafted or not. I think he will give himself a great chance.”

Beard notes that Winston does not project to be a lottery pick, but could be drafted late in the first round on November 18. The Pistons currently own the No. 7 pick, but are among the several teams that could benefit from trading back.

There’s more out of the Central Division:

  • Omari Sankofa II of the Detroit Free Press assesses five bargain free agents the Pistons could target using their room exception, including Kings center Harry Giles, Pacers shooting guard Justin Holiday, and veteran Magic point guard D.J. Augustin.
  • Pacers backup point guard T.J. McConnell is on a $3.5MM non-guaranteed contract for the 2020/21 season. J Michael of the Indy Star posits that McConnell could remain a useful, cost-effective role player on what could be a feisty Indiana team. Alternately, the Pacers could buy McConnell out for $1MM to open up his spot on the roster.
  • As we relayed earlier, 6’7″ swingman Deni Avdija is rumored to be a potential draft target for the Bulls with the fourth pick in this year’s draft.

Draft Notes: Ball, Edwards, Maxey, Yurtseven, More

LaMelo Ball, a candidate to be the No. 1 pick in this year’s draft, reportedly met virtually with New York and Golden State earlier in the year and had an in-person visit with the Timberwolves this week. He’s also expected to meet with the Hornets, Bulls, and Warriors (again) next week.

While Ball has been getting familiar with the teams at the very top of the draft, Rick Bonnell of The Charlotte Observer said during an appearance on Sports Radio WFNZ this week that he has heard from multiple sources that Ball “is not performing very well at job interviews.”

“He is not improving his perception via job interview,” Bonnell said, per Dan Feldman of NBC Sports. “There are people drafting later in the top ten who were not preparing for the possibility of Ball still being around. And I’m not saying that he will not be a top-three pick. I am saying that I know for a fact that there are teams later in the top ten who are doing more research on him, because they no longer think it’s a given he will.”

With the 2020 NBA draft less than three weeks away, we’re knee-deep in smokescreen season, so it’s difficult to know how seriously to take reports like these. Jon Krawczynski of The Athletic dug into the “art of subterfuge” in a new article, noting that the Timberwolves and Warriors – both of whom are said to be interested in trading down – are taking different approaches during the pre-draft process.

While Golden State has been rumored to have real interest in over a half-dozen prospects, Minnesota has been very tight-lipped about the No. 1 pick. In each case, teams that might be interested in trading up haven’t been able to get a clear sense of whether or not the Wolves or Warriors will take the player they want.

Here’s more on the draft:

  • NBA scouts and executives weren’t allowed to be in the gym for the televised Pro Day for Anthony Edwards and Tyrese Maxey on Thursday, as Marc Berman of The New York Post writes. A source tells Berman that some agents were unhappy with the setup, feeling as if it was “unwarranted exposure” for Rich Paul‘s clients. The Knicks were among the teams watching the event on TV, Berman adds.
  • Former Georgetown big man Omer Yurtseven has had virtual meetings with 19 teams, he told Keith Smith of RealGM. However, he’s disappointed he hasn’t got a chance to conduct in-person workouts for all those clubs. “It’s been tough to not be able to work out directly for teams,” Yurtseven said. “I’ve spent a lot of time working on my lateral quickness. I know I needed to be quicker to play in the NBA. I worked on that a lot and can’t wait to show teams.”
  • Eamonn Brennan of The Athletic identifies five prospects he thinks are sleepers in the 2020 draft, including Kansas center Udoka Azubuike, Michigan State guard Cassius Winston, and Charleston guard Grant Riller.