Dennis Schröder

Pacific Notes: Kawhi, Schröder, Gasol, D. Jones

Clippers star Kawhi Leonard was forced to leave Friday night’s game early after an errant elbow from teammate Serge Ibaka connected with his face, sending him to the floor and causing him to bleed profusely from his mouth. While the injury looked bad initially, head coach Tyronn Lue said after the game that he thought Leonard would be “fine,” tweets Malika Andrews of ESPN.

The collision left Leonard requiring eight stitches to treat a mouth laceration, per Ohm Youngmisuk of ESPN. However, Nicolas Batum said he spoke to Kawhi after the game and agreed with Lue’s assessment that the two-time Finals MVP should ultimately be fine.

“You don’t want a player, any player, (to) go down like that with blood all over him and everywhere on the floor,” Batum said. “I think he’s good. I just saw him in the locker room; he was OK, and that was kind of scary in the moment.”

Here’s more from around the Pacific:

  • Addressing rumors that he and the Lakers may attempt to work out an in-season extension, point guard Dennis Schröder said on Friday night that he’s “very comfortable” with his new team and is interested in negotiating a new deal in the coming months as long as it’s fair for both sides, tweets Jovan Buha of The Athletic.
  • After going scoreless in his Lakers debut, newly-signed center Marc Gasol expressed confidence that he’ll bounce back and find his fit going forward, as Buha writes for The Athletic. While Gasol only scored two points on Friday and has yet to make a field goal, he was more effective in the Lakers’ blowout win over Dallas, grabbing nine rebounds and avoiding the foul trouble that plagued him in the opener.
  • Damian Jones‘ 2020/21 salary was initially set to become fully guaranteed at the start of the regular season, but he and the Suns have agreed to push that deadline back to February 25, per ESPN’s Bobby Marks (Twitter link).

Lakers Hope To Extend Schröder Later This Season

The Lakers already like what they see from their new point guard and want to lock him up long-term.

They have begun discussions with point guard Dennis Schröder on a contract extension, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski. Schroder, who is making $16MM this season, will be an unrestricted free agent in the summer if he doesn’t sign an extension.

However, Schröder has a major incentive to wait until after mid-February to finalize an extension and that’s when discussions are expected to pick up again, Wojnarowski adds.

This isn’t the first time the Lakers have engaged Schröder’s representative, Alex Saratsis, regarding an extension. Schröder turned down an initial offer for an additional two years and $33.4MM, the maximum allowable offer the Lakers could make prior to February 16. That’s because Schröder was traded by the Thunder during the offseason, making him only eligible for a two-year extension with a five percent raise in salary.

He could be extended for four years and as much as $83MM after February 16, up to the time he’d become a free agent.

Schröder had 14 points, 12 assists and eight rebounds in the team’s opener against the Clippers.

Even if an extension agreement isn’t reached during the season, the Lakers hold Schröder’s Bird Rights and he can thus go over the salary cap to re-sign him during the 2021 offseason.

In the deal with OKC, the Lakers gave up Danny Green and the draft rights to No. 28 pick Jaden McDaniels, who was flipped to Minnesota in a separate trade.

Pacific Notes: Schröder, Lakers, Suns, Warriors, Kings

New Lakers point guard Dennis Schröder left Wednesday’s preseason game with what was referred to after the game by head coach Frank Vogel as a “mild” ankle sprain, tweets Kyle Goon of The South California News Group (Twitter link).

While the Lakers will continue to check on Schröder’s ankle today and tomorrow, he told reporters that the injury is “nothing to worry about,” per Bill Oram of The Athletic (Twitter link). It sounds like he should be ready to go for L.A.’s regular season opener next week and may even be available for the team’s preseason finale on Friday.

Here’s more from around the Pacific:

  • John Hollinger of The Athletic generally liked the offseason moves made by the Lakers and Suns, but questioned each team’s approach to its center spot. He isn’t sure Montrezl Harrell is a great fit in a lineup with LeBron James and Anthony Davis, given his defensive shortcomings and his inability to stretch the floor. Hollinger also wondered if Jalen Smith was a bit of a reach at No. 10 and didn’t love Phoenix’s signing of Damian Jones, calling him one of the NBA’s worst rotation players last season.
  • With Klay Thompson out for the season, the Warriors will need to consider how to add extra shooting to their lineup, writes Ethan Strauss of The Athletic. Strauss suggests that keeping Mychal Mulder on the roster and playing some three-guard lineups would help, and notes that Golden State also still has a disabled player exception worth $9.3MM that could be used to add a shooter at some point.
  • The Kings have promoted Rico Hines, announcing in a press release that they’ve named him an assistant coach and the club’s director of player development. Hines was the head coach of the G League’s Stockton Kings before joining Sacramento’s staff as a player development coach a year ago.

Lakers Notes: Schroder, Davis, Dudley, Cap Room

Dennis Schröder expects to start with the Lakers, according to ESPN’s Dave McMenamin. Schroder, who was acquired from the Thunder, said that was addressed by his representatives before the trade was completed. “I think my agent talked to the organization (about starting) before they was trading me,” he said “So, that’s that.” Schroder served a sixth-man role with Oklahoma City. His main competition for a starting job would presumably be Alex Caruso, though LeBron James is the de facto point guard and led the league in assists last season.

We have more on the Lakers:

  • Anthony Davis, who remains an unrestricted free agent, will meet with the team on Tuesday, according to Broderick Turner of the Los Angeles Times. Davis, who will joined by agent Rich Paul, is widely expected to sign a max deal of undetermined length during training camp.
  • Davis might wait to see if Giannis Antetokounmpo signs an extension with Milwaukee before he decides how to structure his contract, Brian Windhorst of ESPN suggests (video link). The Lakers could have a significant amount of cap flexibility if Davis signs a two-year contract with a player option, which would help them pursue the two-time MVP.  However, Antekounmpo doesn’t have to make a decision until December 21 and it’s doubtful Davis will want to wait that long.
  • Jared Dudley has agreed to re-sign for one more season and he has the power to block a trade under the one-year Bird rule, Eric Pincus of Bleacher Report tweets.
  • Dudley’s veteran minimum deal will leave the Lakers $2.9MM below the hard cap, Bobby Marks of ESPN notes (Twitter link). That would allow the club to add a player in mid-January or in early April after buyouts are executed around the league.

Lakers, Thunder Finalize Dennis Schröder, Danny Green Trade

NOVEMBER 18, 11:46pm: The deal is now official, the Lakers confirmed in a press release. The Lakers received Schröder in exchange for Green and the draft rights to No. 28 pick Jaden McDaniels, who will be flipped to Minnesota in a separate trade. Green will also be moved in another deal.

NOVEMBER 15, 10:56am: The teams have an agreement in principle on a deal, tweets Shams Charania of The Athletic.

NOVEMBER 15, 10:02am: The Lakers are expected to acquire guard Dennis Schröder from the Thunder when the trade moratorium lifts on Monday, tweets ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski. Oklahoma City will receive the 28th pick in Wednesday’s draft and guard Danny Green in return.

Woj adds that the trade is “well on course to be completed” and that other teams that were pursuing Schröder have moved on to different players.

L.A. owes a protected first-rounder in 2021 to the Pelicans, so the deal can’t be finalized until the Lakers make their draft pick Wednesday night, points out Bobby Marks of ESPN (Twitter link).

Schröder, 27, will make $15.5MM this season in the final year of his contract. He has spent two years in Oklahoma City and averaged 18.9 points and 4.0 assists off the bench last season. In Los Angeles, he’ll become a primary play-maker for the Lakers and could be the team’s third scoring option behind LeBron James and Anthony Davis.

Green, 33, will make $15.4MM in 2020/21, so the salaries match up for a deal. He signed with the Lakers last summer and averaged 8.0 PPG in 68 games. He has played for the last two NBA champions and will be a free agent again in 2021.

Schröder may be just the first of several veterans moved by Oklahoma City this fall — Chris Paul and Steven Adams are also considered trade candidates. Theoretically, the team could also immediately flip Green to a new team as well.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Lowe’s Latest: Beal, Celtics, Culver, Heat, Gordon, More

Teams with interest in Bradley Beal haven’t given up hope that the Wizards will consider trading him this fall, according to Zach Lowe of ESPN, who notes that multiple “strong playoff teams” have looked into what it would take to acquire a top-10 pick and may be seeking extra assets to swing a big trade for someone like Beal.

However, the Wizards have shown zero interest in trading Beal, even for the No. 1 or No. 2 pick in this year’s draft, sources tell ESPN. The Timberwolves (No. 1) and Warriors (No. 2) are both known to be hoping to trade their selections for an All-NBA caliber player like Beal (or Ben Simmons or Devin Booker), but it seems unlikely that such a deal will materialize, says Lowe.

For the Wizards to really consider the idea of moving Beal, he may have to tell the team he would prefer to play elsewhere, per Lowe. Perhaps that will happen down the road if Washington doesn’t bounce back from a second consecutive lottery finish, but it hasn’t to this point.

Here’s much more from Lowe:

  • Lowe confirms the Celtics have explored using their three first-round picks to trade up in the draft, but says Boston is considering a number of options with those picks, including trying to trade for a “solid veteran.” Since so many teams are in win-now mode, there aren’t many of those players available, according to Lowe, who says that Larry Nance Jr. and Dennis Schröder are among the players who could be under-the-radar targets for teams looking to upgrade their rotations.
  • Jarrett Culver‘s name has popped up in trade rumors, but Lowe thinks the Timberwolves would only move him in a package for a star, or for a draft pick that would help acquire a star. Lowe adds that he thinks Minnesota will dangle the No. 17 pick and James Johnson‘s expiring contract in search of a veteran contributor.
  • While Lowe thinks the Heat should be able to re-sign Goran Dragic on a big one-year deal, he expects it to be tougher for Miami to take the same approach with Jae Crowder, who will likely receive multiyear offers in the mid-level range.
  • Rival executives have pitched the idea of the Mavericks acquiring Rudy Gobert from the Jazz, but Lowe is skeptical there will be a match there and believes Dallas will have a tough time acquiring a third star via trade this offseason.
  • It’s unclear what sort of leaguewide interest there is in Magic forward Aaron Gordon. Lowe points to the Trail Blazers as a potential match, but says the two teams have never seriously discussed a swap involving Gordon and CJ McCollum and isn’t sure whether lesser assets like Zach Collins or Anfernee Simons would appeal to Orlando.
  • Lowe’s offseason preview is jam-packed with many more notes and is worth checking out in full. We relayed a number of Lowe’s other most intriguing tidbits in our stories earlier today, including items on the Bucks, Pistons, and Knicks.

Atlantic Notes: Gasol, Lowry, Durant, Paul

The Raptors might offer Marc Gasol a one-year deal, but he’ll likely have more pursuers, according to The Toronto Star’s Doug Smith. Although Gasol didn’t have a notable impact in the postseason, the Raptors can re-sign the veteran center to a short-team deal and preserve cap space for next summer. However, he might get a multi-year offer elsewhere or play overseas.

We have more from the Atlantic Division:

  • Raptors point guard Kyle Lowry will become an unrestricted free agent after next season and it’s quite possible he could finish his career elsewhere, Smith writes in a separate story. It’s unlikely the Raptors will offer him an extension beforehand, since they’re hoping to keep their options open in 2021 free agency. Lowry, who will make $30.5MM next season, has shown he has plenty left in the tank. But his long run with the team could eventually end if Fred VanVleet is re-signed this summer.
  • Kevin Durant has been working out and playing full court with Nets teammates in Los Angeles, Net Income of NetsDaily relays. Durant, who sat out this season rehabbing his ruptured Achilles, says he feels “like myself” but still has a long way to go to reach his previous level. “I’m in a stage now where we’re just hooping every day,” Durant said on Joe Budden’s podcast. “I feel good waiting for next season to get back.”
  • How could Chris Paul land in Philadelphia? A number of Athletic writers explore various trade possibilities with either Paul or fellow Thunder guard Dennis Schroder – or even both – winding up with the Sixers.

Montrezl Harrell Named Sixth Man Of The Year

Clippers center Montrezl Harrell has won the NBA’s Sixth Man of the Year award for the 2019/20 season, reports Shams Charania of The Athletic (via Twitter). Harrell beat out fellow finalists Dennis Schröder and teammate Lou Williams for the award.

Harrell, 26, enjoyed the best season of his career in 2019/20, averaging 18.6 PPG, 7.1 RPG, and 1.1 BPG on 58.0% shooting in 63 games (27.8 MPG) for the Clippers. Although he was technically the team’s backup center behind Ivica Zubac, Harrell was typically relied upon in the team’s closing lineups.

As Fred Katz of The Athletic observes (via Twitter), Harrell’s win represents a deviation from the norm, as the award almost always goes to a high-scoring guard. In the last decade, Williams and Jamal Crawford have won the award multiple times, with Eric Gordon, J.R. Smith, and James Harden also taking it home. Lamar Odom was the last non-guard to be named Sixth Man of the Year in 2011.

The Sixth Man of the Year was one of the few NBA awards this summer whose outcome was in doubt, as Schröder and Williams also submitted strong cases. The Thunder point guard averaged 18.9 PPG, 4.0 APG, and 3.6 RPG on .469/.385/.839 shooting, while Williams – who won the award in 2018 and 2019 – put up 18.2 PPG, 5.6 APG, and 3.1 RPG.

Harrell received 58 of 100 potential first-place votes for the award, with Schröder getting 35 and Williams receiving the final seven. Here are the full voting results, per the NBA:

  1. Montrezl Harrell, Clippers (397 total points)
  2. Dennis Schröder, Thunder (328)
  3. Lou Williams, Clippers (127)
  4. Christian Wood, Pistons (17)
  5. George Hill, Bucks (17)
  6. Goran Dragic, Heat (6)
  7. Derrick Rose, Pistons (5)
  8. Davis Bertans, Wizards (2)
  9. Dwight Howard, Lakers (1)

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Dennis Schroder, P.J. Tucker Fined For Game 5 Scuffle

Thunder guard Dennis Schroder and Rockets forward P.J. Tucker have each been fined $25,000 for their involvement in a scuffle that occurred on Saturday, the NBA announced in a press release.

The incident occurred with 6:51 remaining in the third quarter of Game 5, with both players being ejected following the altercation. Schroder was fined for making contact to Tucker’s groin area, while Tucker was fined for approaching Schroder, making contact with him, and escalating the situation, the league said.

“It’s never that,” Schroder said on whether his blow was intentional, as relayed by Erik Horne of The Athletic (Twitter link). “We’re competitors. We go out there and compete as hard as we can, but for me, my family didn’t raise me that way to hurt somebody intentionally.”

Tucker was asked on Sunday whether he believes the statement and whether Schroder reached out after the incident, to which he replied, “No and no,” Mark Berman of Fox 26 tweets.

The Rockets ultimately routed the Thunder 114-80, taking a 3-2 series lead. Tucker finished with five points and two steals in 21 minutes, while Schroder recorded 19 points in 20 minutes of work. The two teams will meet for Game 6 on Monday night.

Dennis Schröder Returns To NBA’s Campus

Thunder guard Dennis Schröder has returned to the NBA’s campus at Walt Disney World, a team spokesperson confirmed to Joe Mussatto of The Oklahoman on Tuesday. Schröder left Orlando over a week ago in order to be with his wife for the birth of their second child.

Assuming Schröder tested negative for the coronavirus for each of the last seven days while away from the campus, the expectation is that he’ll have to quarantine for just four days now that he’s back at Disney World. We don’t know exactly when Schröder returned and began quarantining, so it remains to be seen whether he’ll be available to play in Oklahoma City’s final seeding game on Friday vs. the Clippers.

At the very least, Schröder figures to miss Wednesday’s game against Miami. If the veteran guard doesn’t clear quarantine in time for Friday’s game, the Thunder will plan to work him back into the rotation during the first game of the postseason next week, barring any quarantine- or testing-related complications.

While he was away from the NBA’s campus, Schröder was named a finalist for the NBA’s Sixth Man of the Year award for 2019/20. He has enjoyed the best year of his career in OKC this season, averaging 18.9 PPG, 4.0 APG, and 3.7 RPG with career-best shooting percentages of 46.9% from the floor and 37.9% from beyond the arc.