DaQuan Jeffries

Hawks Release DaQuan Jeffries, Two Others

The Hawks have cut three players from their preseason roster, announcing in a press release that they’ve requested waivers on swingman DaQuan Jeffries, center Johnny Hamilton, and guard Ibi Watson.

Of the three, only Jeffries has NBA experience. The 24-year-old averaged 4.1 PPG and 2.3 RPG in 31 games (15.9 MPG) for the Kings and Rockets in 2020/21, and also spent the ’19/20 season in Sacramento. However, he was a non-guaranteed contract this fall, so Atlanta won’t take on any dead money as a result of releasing him.

Like Jeffries, Hamilton and Watson also weren’t owed guaranteed money. Watson is probably a good bet to join the College Park Skyhawks, Atlanta’s G League affiliate, but it’s not clear if Hamilton will head to the NBAGL too — he has played in international leagues over the last two seasons.

After today’s roster moves, the Hawks’ roster is technically ready for the regular season, with 15 players on standard contracts (14 on guaranteed deals, plus Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot) and a pair on two-way pacts. However, Atlanta could still make more moves before Monday’s deadline for teams to set their regular season squads.

Hawks Sign DaQuan Jeffries, Waive A.J. Lawson

12:00pm: In order to make room on the roster for Jeffries, the Hawks have waived guard A.J. Lawson, who had been on an Exhibit 10 contract, per a team press release confirming both transactions. Lawson could end up playing for the College Park Skyhawks, Atlanta’s G League affiliate.

10:57am: The Hawks have agreed to sign free agent wing DaQuan Jeffries, according to Chris Kirschner of The Athletic, who reports (via Twitter) that Jeffries will get a partially guaranteed contract.

Jeffries, 24, made his NBA debut with the Kings during the 2019/20 season and saw limited minutes for the team across two seasons before being released this past April. He was claimed off waivers by the Rockets and ended up averaging 4.1 PPG and 2.3 RPG in 31 games (15.9 MPG) for Sacramento and Houston in 2020/21.

The Rockets cut Jeffries during the final week of the regular season and he was once again claimed off waivers, this time by the Spurs. However, he didn’t appear in a regular season game with San Antonio and the club opted not to pick up his option for the 2021/22 season, making him a free agent.

The Hawks have a full 20-man roster and will have to trade or waive a player in order to officially add Jeffries. As for whether he has a chance to make the regular season squad, that remains to be seen — the size of his partial guarantee could provide a hint, once it’s reported.

Atlanta has 14 players on fully guaranteed salaries, so the 15th spot appears up for grabs. A player who spent training camp with the team might have a leg up for that spot, but camp invitees Jahlil Okafor and Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot haven’t been particularly effective in the preseason so far. Of course, the Hawks may also elect not to carry a 15th man to start the season.

2021 NBA Qualifying Offer Recap

Players eligible for restricted free agency don’t become restricted free agents by default. In order for a team to make a player a restricted free agent, it must extend a qualifying offer to him. The qualifying offer, which is essentially just a one-year contract offer, varies in amount depending on a player’s previous contract status.

A qualifying offer is designed to give a player’s current team the right of first refusal. Because the qualifying offer acts as the first formal contract offer a free agent receives, his team then has the option to match any offer sheet the player signs with another club. If a player doesn’t receive a qualifying offer, he becomes an unrestricted free agent and is free to sign with any team — his previous club is given no formal opportunity to match.

You can read more about qualifying offers here.

Listed below are the details on which players did and didn’t receive qualifying offers this summer. Our list is based on various reports and team announcements leading up to the August 1 deadline, along with information from RealGM’s official NBA transactions log.

It’s possible that one or two qualifying offers slipped through the cracks and will be reported later today before free agency officially gets underway — if so, we’ll update this list. For now though, this is what the qualifying offer landscape looks like. The players who received QOs will be restricted free agents, while the players who didn’t will be unrestricted.

Received qualifying offers:

Players on standard contracts:

Players on two-way contracts:

Note: Qualifying offers for two-way players are one-year, two-way contracts with a $50K guarantee unless otherwise indicated.

Did not receive qualifying offers:

Players on standard contracts:

Players on two-way contracts:

Note: Some players who finished the season on two-way contracts signed two-year deals, making them ineligible for free agency this summer. They remain under contract. Additionally, some of the players listed below did not have spent enough time on an NBA active roster to be eligible for a qualifying offer.

Salary information from Basketball Insiders was used in the creation of this post.

Southwest Notes: Jeffries, Grizzlies, Olynyk, Pelicans

While DaQuan Jeffries will technically be part of the Spurs‘ roster for their play-in game on Wednesday and any other games they may play this season, he won’t see any action for the club in 2020/21, tweets Tom Orsborn of The San Antonio Express-News.

Jeffries, who was claimed off waivers by the Spurs on Saturday, is mainly a developmental pickup, according to Orsborn, who suggests that the team will evaluate the young swingman during the summer. However, it’s worth noting that Jeffries has a team option for 2021/22, which San Antonio will have to pick up or decline prior to free agency and Summer League play. If the Spurs don’t exercise that option, Jeffries could move on to another club.

Here are a few more Southwest notes:

  • The Grizzlies have joined the list of teams increasing the number of fans they’ll allow into their building for the postseason, announcing in a press release that they’ll bump the capacity of FedEx Forum from 20% to 40%. Of course, the Grizzlies will end up just hosting a single play-in game if they’re unable to earn one of the final two playoff spots in the West.
  • With free agency around the corner, Rockets big man Kelly Olynyk said his newfound familiarity with the team and its staff will be a factor in his offseason decision. “I know the coaching staff here, the organization, the people,” Olynyk said (video link via Mark Berman of Fox 26 Houston). “I know I have a role here if I decide to come back and I think they would welcome it.”
  • After a disappointing showing in 2020/21, the Pelicans will be under pressure to take a major step forward next season, according to Will Guillory of The Athletic, who states that finishing 10 games below .500 again won’t be acceptable.

Spurs Claim DaQuan Jeffries Off Waivers

The Spurs have claimed DaQuan Jeffries off waivers, tweets Shams Charania of The Athletic.

This is the second time this season that the 23-year-old shooting guard has been claimed on waivers. The Rockets claimed him in early April, and he appeared in 13 games, averaging 4.9 points and 3.2 rebounds per night, before being released Thursday.

Jeffries started the season with the Kings, averaging 3.5 PPG and 1.6 RPG in 18 games before they waived him April 3. He also played 13 games for Sacramento as a rookie last season.

San Antonio has a roster opening, so another move won’t be necessary to add Jeffries. As was the case when he was claimed off waivers by the Rockets, Jeffries will take his existing contract with him as he joins the Spurs, so he’ll still have a $1.7MM team option for 2021/22.

The Spurs will close out their season Sunday afternoon against the Suns before heading to the play-in tournament.

DaQuan Jeffries Waived By Rockets

Rockets swingman DaQuan Jeffries has been waived by the club, tweets Mark Berman of Fox 26 in Houston. Across 13 games (including three starts) with the Rockets, Jeffries averaged 4.9 PPG, 3.2 RPG, and 1.2 APG in 20.1 MPG.

Prior to his stint with the Rockets, Jeffries appeared in 18 games (including two starts) for the Kings this year, averaging 3.5 PPG and 1.6 RPG in 12.9 MPG.

As an undrafted rookie out of Tulsa on a two-way contract, the 6’5″ 23-year-old played in 13 games with Sacramento during the 2019/20 season. Over 27 games (including 22 starts) for the Kings’ G League affiliate, the Stockton Kings, Jeffries averaged 16.6 PPG, 6.9 RPG, 1.9 APG and 1.2 SPG across 31.0 MPG that same season.

The move opens up a spot on Houston’s 15-man roster, which the team will use to sign Khyri Thomas to a multiyear contract.

Rockets Claim DaQuan Jeffries

7:29pm: The Rockets have officially claimed Jeffries, according to a team press release.

4:28pm: The Rockets will claim former Kings forward DaQuan Jeffries off waivers, Shams Charania of The Athletic tweets.

Jeffries, a 23-year-old shooting guard, is under contract through next season. He was placed on waivers Saturday by Sacramento. 

The Rockets had an open roster spot after waiving Ben McLemore.

Jeffries signed a two-year, $3MM contract in November which included a $1.7MM team option on the second season. Houston can take a look at Jeffries the rest of this season and see if it wants to exercise that option.

Jeffries missed time this season due to a Grade 3 ankle injury and fell out of Sacramento’s rotation. He averaged 3.1 PPG and 1.6 RPG across 17 games for the Kings this season after appearing in 13 games as a rookie on a two-way contract last season.

He had a season-high 18 points against Milwaukee on February.

Kings Waive DaQuan Jeffries

12:32pm: Jeffries has officially been waived, the team tweets.

10:43am: The Kings will waive DaQuan Jeffries, according to James Ham of NBC Sports Bay Area. Sacramento will reportedly use the roster spot freed up by waiving Jeffries, though it remains to be seen whom the team might sign, Ham adds.

Jeffries was in his second NBA season with the Kings but struggled to stay on the floor. He missed time to begin the season due to an ankle injury and despite cracking the starting lineup, was not able to remain in the rotation.

All told, Jeffries averaged 3.1 PPG and 1.6 RPG across 17 games for the Kings this season. As Ham notes, the 23-year-old has shown potential as a three-and-D weapon but may need more time in the G League to develop his game.

California Notes: Poole, LeBron, Kings, Wiggins

Anthony Slater of The Athletic wonders if second-year reserve point guard Jordan Poole should be given the keys to the Warriors‘ bench ahead of current main backup point guard Brad Wanamaker.

Poole has struggled to carve out consistent minutes in Golden State’s rotation this season, as he appears better-suited toward a play-maker role than an off-ball one, and yet he has frequently been slotted in the latter position to accommodate Wanamaker. Poole has flashed his bona fides in the NBAGL Orlando “bubble” thus far, averaging 22.4 PPG, 4.4 RPG, and 3.8 APG in eight games for the Santa Cruz Warriors.

There’s more out of California:

  • Lakers All-Star forward LeBron James is happy with his heavy minutes load, even in his 18th NBA season, according to Dave McMenamin of ESPN. In February alone, James has played more than 40 minutes in four games. “This is a fast turnaround from last season, and we all wish we could have more rest,” James acknowledged. “But I’m here to work, I’m here to punch my clock in and be available to my teammates.” With starters Dennis Schroder and Anthony Davis both recently sidelined, James has been needed more than usual to help Los Angeles. He is currently averaging 35.0 MPG.
  • Kings backup swingmen DaQuan Jeffries and Robert Woodard II represent the ideal athletic, big wing defenders Sacramento’s front office is targeting, writes Jason Anderson of the Sacramento Bee.“Toughness on the defensive side of the ball is definitely something [Jeffries] brings,” center Richaun Holmes said. Kings head coach Luke Walton also expressed excitement for Woodard. “Woodard, obviously he’s a rookie and he needs a ton of experience himself, and he’s getting some good experience down in the [NBA G League] bubble right now.”
  • Warriors assistant coach Ron Adams lauded the defensive development of swingman Andrew Wiggins, according to Drew Shiller of NBC Sports Bay Area. “His total defensive game is coming along,” Adams said. “He’s getting better on the help side.” Adams cited one area in which he would like to see Wiggins continue to grow. “Like any player he has a few things he can improve — we’d like to see him rebound [he’s averaging 4.7 per game] a little bit better.”

DaQuan Jeffries Returns To Kings Practice

Kings swingman DaQuan Jeffries has returned to team practice, per Jason Jones of The Athletic (Twitter link).

Jeffries was on a two-way contract during his 2019/20 rookie season, but the club elevated him to its 15-man roster and fully guaranteed his deal ahead of the 2020/21 season. He has yet to play in a regular season game during this sophomore campaign.

Back soreness was the initial culprit behind Jeffries’ lack of availability for Sacramento in all but one preseason game this year. While recuperating, Jeffries incurred a Grade 3 left ankle sprain in December after landing on Jabari Parker‘s foot during a scrimmage, which sidelined him until now.

Jeffries appeared in 13 games for Sacramento during his rookie season, averaging 10.8 minutes per contest.

Jason Anderson of the Sacramento Bee tweets that Jeffries has been listed as questionable to return to the court for the Kings in a Friday contest against the Magic.