Chris Clemons

Summer League Commitments: Bulls, Hawks, Mavericks, Magic

The Bulls have agreed to a summer league deal with point guard Carlik Jones, a source told Hoops Rumors. Jones signed 10-day contracts with the Mavericks and Nuggets this past season. He averaged 22.1 points per game with Dallas’ G League affiliate, shooting an efficient 46% from the floor.

Jones, 24, was also named to the All-NBA G League Third Team and NBA G League All-Rookie Team. He played for the Mavericks in summer league last year after going undrafted.

Here are some other summer league commitments to share:

  • The Hawks have received a summer league commitment from Chris Clemons, a league source told Hoops Rumors. Clemons averaged 21.3 points per game with the Celtics’ G League affiliate this season, which included a 52-point outing. The 5’9″ point guard was one of the top scorers in the G League this season.
  • Free agent guard Jalen Lecque has accepted a summer league invite from the Mavericks, a source told Hoops Rumors. The 22-year-old averaged 16.8 points per game with the Wisconsin Herd this season, shooting 42%. He holds experience with the Suns and Pacers.
  • Free agent forward Emanuel Terry has committed to playing summer league with the Magic, according to a source. Terry, 6’9″, holds brief NBA experience with the Suns and Heat. He averaged 15.6 points and 8.4 rebounds with the Stockton Kings this year.

Dion Waiters, Tyreke Evans Among FAs Attending Mavs’ Mini-Camp

The Mavericks are hosting a free agent mini-camp this week that will have over 30 players in attendance, our JD Shaw reports (via Twitter).

The list of participants includes a handful with extensive NBA experience, including veteran guards Dion Waiters, Tyreke Evans, and Langston Galloway.

Jalen Lecque, Chris Clemons, Emanuel Terry, Grant Riller, Jay Huff, and Tyler Hall are among the other mini-camp invitees who have played in at least one regular season NBA game. A.J. Lawson, Andrew Andrews, Isaiah Brown, Justin Gorham, and Sekou Wiggs are some of the participants without NBA experience (Twitter links).

Teams are permitted to carry up to 20 players during the offseason, giving them some flexibility to take fliers on veterans or youngsters who could come to training camp on non-guaranteed contracts and compete for a 15-man roster spot.

It’s possible one or more of the players at Dallas’ mini-camp this week will make a strong enough impression to earn a camp invite. As Shaw notes, some of the mini-camp participants could also be invited to join the Mavericks’ Summer League team next month.

It’s worth noting that even after agreeing to trade four players for Christian Wood, the Mavs don’t project to have a ton of open 15-man roster spots for 2022/23. Dallas will have nine players on guaranteed salaries, plus Maxi Kleber and Frank Ntilikina on non-guaranteed contracts. Jalen Brunson and Theo Pinson are free agents, but the team reportedly wants to bring back both. If all of those players return, it would leave just two openings on the Mavs’ standard regular season roster.

Eastern Notes: Knicks, R. Williams, Isaac, Portis

The Knicks held a free agent mini-camp this week, according to Adam Zagoria of ZagsBlog (Twitter link), who says a number of players with NBA experience were in attendance.

Guards Devon Dotson and Chris Clemons, swingman DaQuan Jeffries, forwards Louis King and George King, and big men Alize Johnson and Reggie Perry were among the players who participated in the Knicks’ mini-camp, per Zagoria. John Petty, Craig Randall, Carlik Jones, Aaron Henry, and A.J. Lawson also took part.

The Knicks won’t necessarily sign any of the free agents who attended the mini-camp, but it gave them a chance to see some of the talent that’s out there as they mull possible Summer League and training camp invites.

Here’s more from around the Eastern Conference:

  • Celtics big man Robert Williams, who is still listed as questionable for Game 6 on Friday, was diagnosed with a bone bruise in his left knee after colliding with Giannis Antetokounmpo in Game 3, head coach Ime Udoka said today. Williams’ injured knee is the same one he had surgery on in March, but that procedure isn’t the cause of his current absence. “There’s no problems with the surgery at all,” Udoka said, per Andrew Lopez of ESPN. “It’s just that specific hit that he took (in Game 3).”
  • Because of the injury-related language and games-played requirements in Jonathan Isaac‘s contract with the Magic, his $17.4MM annual salaries for the next three years are now partially guaranteed instead of fully guaranteed, as Keith Smith of Spotrac tweets. Isaac has missed two straight seasons due to an ACL tear, but there’s no indication that the Magic are considering waiving him, which is the only way they could avoid paying his full salaries.
  • Bobby Portis only shot 4-of-14 from the floor in the Bucks‘ Game 5 win on Wednesday, but he grabbed 15 rebounds and made the sort of crucial hustle plays the team values, writes Jim Owczarski of The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Averaging a double-double (11.3 PPG, 10.4 RPG) so far this postseason, Portis is once again displaying his value ahead of possible free agency. He holds a $4.6MM player option for 2022/23.

And-Ones: Key Dates, Las Vegas, 2021 Draft, Clemons

If a team wants to waive a player who is on an expiring contract, that move will have to be made by Thursday at 5:00 pm ET, tweets ESPN’s Bobby Marks. Players on multiyear deals can be cut after that, but a player in the final year of his contract must clear waivers before Sunday.

Sunday is also the last day for NBA teams to officially sign a player or convert a player from a two-way contract to a standard deal, Marks adds. That deadline has typically varied from team to team, depending on when the club plays its final regular season game — this year, all 30 teams will play their regular season finales on April 10.

Here are a few more odds and ends from around the basketball world:

  • Having bought a 66-acre parcel of land in Las Vegas, the Oak View Group intends to build and run an arena that could one day attract an NBA team, writes Mike Vorkunov of The Athletic. The plan is to open the arena in 2026, and consultant Marc Badain says it will be “NBA-ready.” The league has long stated that expansion isn’t in its immediate plans, but if and when that changes, Seattle and Las Vegas are considered two of the top candidates for franchises.
  • Within the same story, Vorkunov also explores the increased number of fines the NBA has handed out to players who use profanity this season, examining why those penalties have become more frequent and where the league seems to draw the line.
  • John Hollinger of The Athletic takes an in-depth look at the NBA’s impressive 2021 draft class and considers whether it could end up rivaling the 1996 class, which Hollinger considers the best ever.
  • As Hoops Rumors’ JD Shaw first reported (via Twitter), Maine Celtics guard Chris Clemons was named the NBA G League’s Player of the Month for March. He averaged 29.0 points, 5.6 assists, 5.4 rebounds, and 2.0 steals per game in 11 appearances, including a 52-point outburst on March 17 vs Lakeland.

COVID-19 Updates: Grizzlies, Harrell, Thybulle, Bolmaro, More

All the Grizzlies players who were recently placed in the NBA’s health and safety protocols have now been cleared, head coach Taylor Jenkins said on Thursday evening (Twitter link via Damichael Cole of The Memphis Commercial Appeal). After three Memphis players exited the protocols on Wednesday, John Konchar and Xavier Tillman were the only players still affected — they’re apparently out of the protocols now too.

Here are more updates on COVID-19 and the health and safety protocols:

  • Wizards big man Montrezl Harrell has cleared the protocols and is questionable to play on Friday in Chicago, tweets Chase Hughes of NBC Sports Washington.
  • Matisse Thybulle is no longer on the Sixers‘ injury report, as Keith Pompey of The Philadelphia Inquirer tweets, which is a good indication he’s out of the protocols.
  • Timberwolves rookie Leandro Bolmaro has entered the COVID-19 protocols, according to the team (Twitter link). He’s the only Minnesota player in the protocols for now.
  • The NBA’s latest injury report lists Mavericks guard Isaiah Thomas as simply “not with team” and Cavaliers forward Cedi Osman as probable to play on Friday in Portland as he takes part in return to competition reconditioning, so it sounds like both players have exited the protocols. However, Thomas has been ruled out for tonight’s game and his 10-day contract will expire overnight.
  • Hawks guard Chris Clemons has entered the protocols, per Sarah K. Spencer of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution (Twitter link). Clemons’ 10-day deal expires tonight, so his time in Atlanta could be over.
  • The NBA will continue daily COVID-19 testing of players who haven’t received a booster shot through the All-Star break, reports ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski. All players and coaches, regardless of vaccination status, will also continue to be tested daily through January 15, Wojnarowski adds.

Hawks Sign Cameron Oliver, Chris Clemons To 10-Day Contracts

DECEMBER 29: Oliver and Clemons have officially joined the Hawks on 10-day deals, the team announced in a press release. Atlanta is now carrying an unprecedented nine extra players via hardship exceptions and 26 players in total.


DECEMBER 28: With their roster ravaged by COVID-19, the Hawks will sign Cameron Oliver and Chris Clemons to 10-day contracts under the hardship provision, tweets Shams Charania of The Athletic.

Atlanta already had 10 players in the league’s health and safety protocols, and that number grew today when Bogdan Bogdanovic, Gorgui Dieng and Malik Ellison were all added, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN (Twitter link). Trae Young cleared protocols Monday after submitting two negative COVID-19 tests.

Oliver, a 25-year-old forward, has been in the G League with the South Bay Lakers, averaging 14.4 points and 7.1 rebounds in 14 games. He was in training camp with the Lakers, but was waived before the season began. He played four games for the Rockets last season after signing a 10-day deal in May.

Clemons, a 24-year-old guard, was playing for the Maine Celtics in the G League, where he averaged 16.3 points, 4.9 rebounds and 4.0 assists in 14 games. He was with the Celtics in training camp and played 33 games for the Rockets during the 2019/20 season.

Celtics Waive Mathews, Pinson, Kornet, Clemons

The Celtics have waived guard Garrison Mathews, according to Adam Himmelsbach of The Boston Globe (Twitter link). The team is also cutting Theo Pinson, Luke Kornet, and Chris Clemons, per Jared Weiss of The Athletic (Twitter link). All four players were on non-guaranteed contracts.

According to Weiss, the plan is for Pinson, Kornet, and Clemons to report to the Maine Celtics in the G League, along with Ryan Arcidiacono and Juwan Morgan, who were released on Friday. However, it doesn’t sound like Mathews will join them — he’ll become an unrestricted free agent if and when he clears waivers.

The moves will leave the Celtics with 16 players under contract, including 15 on standard deals. Jabari Parker and Bruno Fernando, who were battling to hold off those camp invitees for spots on the regular season roster, will remain with the team, Weiss notes.

Boston still has an open two-way slot.

Celtics Sign Luke Kornet, Chris Clemons To Camp Deals

The Celtics officially completed their previouslyreported deals with big man Luke Kornet and guard Chris Clemons on Friday, signing both players to training camp contracts, per RealGM’s transactions log.

Kornet, 26, has appeared in a total of 133 regular season games for the Knicks, Bulls, and Celtics since entering the NBA in 2017/18 out of Vanderbilt. The 7’2″ forward/center was traded from Chicago to Boston at the 2021 deadline and played a semi-regular role for the Celtics down the stretch, putting up 4.4 PPG and 2.9 RPG in 18 games (14.1 MPG).

Clemons played on a two-way deal with Houston two seasons ago after going undrafted out of Campbell. He appeared in 33 games that year but he tore his Achilles prior to the 2020/21 campaign. He was waived in January after Houston acquired Kevin Porter Jr.

Both Kornet and Clemons will likely be waived shortly, and are good bets to join the Maine Celtics, Boston’s G League affiliate.

Celtics To Sign Chris Clemons To Camp Deal

The Celtics are signing Chris Clemons to an Exhibit 10 contract, Jared Weiss of The Athletic tweets.

Clemons played on a two-way deal with Houston two seasons ago after going undrafted out of Campbell. He appeared in 33 games that season but he tore his Achilles prior to the 2020/21 season. He was waived in January after Houston acquired Kevin Porter Jr.

Clemons will likely be waived and play for the Maine Celtics in the G League, where he could earn a $50K bonus if he remains on their roster for 60 days.

Cavs Trade Kevin Porter Jr. To Rockets

JANUARY 22: The trade is now official, according to press releases from the Rockets and Cavaliers. Houston confirmed in its announcement that Clemons has been released to make room for Porter.

“After careful and thoughtful evaluation, we made the very difficult and collective decision to make this trade,” Cavs GM Koby Altman said in a statement. “Given the culture and environment we have worked to cultivate here in Cleveland, we feel this move is in everyone’s best interest. Kevin has a bright career ahead of him as a professional basketball player and, at his core, is a good person.”


JANUARY 21: The Cavaliers are sending second-year swingman Kevin Porter Jr. to the Rockets, Shams Charania of The Athletic reports (via Twitter).

In exchange, the Cavs will receive a future protected second-round draft pick from Houston, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski adds (via Twitter). Tim MacMahon of ESPN tweets that the pick is top-55 protected and will most likely never actually be conveyed to Cleveland.

As Chris Fedor of Cleveland.com notes, the primary benefit of the deal for the Cavs is to open up a roster spot and to move off Porter’s guaranteed rookie-scale salary for this season ($1.72MM) and 2021/22 ($1.78MM). Since Houston can absorb Porter’s salary into a traded player exception, Cleveland won’t have to take a player back in the deal.

After throwing a locker room tantrum on January 15 when he discovered his locker had been relocated, Porter was instructed by the Cavaliers to clean out his locker and expect to be waived or traded.

Porter, who initially dropped in the 2019 draft due to off-court concerns, has had a tough second season. In November, he was arrested on charges of mishandling a firearm (a felony), plus driving without a license and marijuana possession (both misdemeanors). Last month, a grand jury cleared Porter of all charges.

Porter has not suited up for the Cavaliers at all this season. During a solid rookie outing, however, the No. 30 2019 draft pick out of USC impressed with averages of 10.0 PPG, 3.2 RPG, 2.2 APG and 0.9 SPG across 50 contests.

The Rockets, now in asset-accrual mode after sending perennial MVP candidate James Harden to the Nets in a four-team trade last week, are taking a flyer on a talented player in this deal. The hope, according to Fedor and MacMahon (Twitter link), is that veteran player development coach John Lucas can help Porter get his career back in track in Houston.

In order to open up a roster for Porter, the Rockets will waive injured guard Chris Clemons, per Jonathan Feigen of The Houston Chronicle (Twitter link).

Clemons’ minimum salary for 2020/21 was initially non-guaranteed, but Houston will be obligated to pay it in full after he suffered a season-ending Achilles tear. The Rockets are in better position to eat that money following the Harden deal — team salary is now comfortably below the luxury tax line rather than above it, and the club is no longer right up against its hard cap.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images. Luke Adams contributed to this story.