Derrick White

World Cup Notes: Team USA, White, Young

Head coach Gregg Popovich is strongly considering taking 15 players to Australia later this month in advance of the World Cup as opposed to cutting the roster down to a dozen players prior to leaving the country, Marc Stein of the New York Times tweets. FIBA regulations state that teams can only carry 12 players for the World Cup itself, though the remaining players could simply attend alongside the coaching staff and never suit up.

Here’s more surrounding the World Cup:

  • Spurs guard Derrick White and Kings big man Marvin Bagley III are the strongest contenders to be promoted from the Select Team to Team USA’s primary World Cup roster, tweets Stein. Bleacher Report’s Ric Bucher suggests (via Instagram) that White’s promotion has already happened, while Bagley’s is likely.
  • Mitchell Robinson is dealing with a knee injury, as Marc Berman of the New York Post relays. The Knicks center initially suffered the injury over the weekend and returned to practice on Tuesday and re-injured it the following day. A source close to the situation describes the ailment as “just soreness.”
  • Hawks guard Trae Young left Team USA’s training camp because of a minor eye infection, sources tell Brian Windhorst of ESPN.com (Twitter link). Young had been practicing with the Select Team.
  • Chris Boucher has withdrawn from the World Cup for personal reasons, Josh Lewenberg of the TSN tweets. The Raptors big man had been practicing with Canada’s National Team.

Team USA Updates: Millsap, Plumlee, Harrell, Select Team

USA Basketball has issued a press release announcing a series of updates relating to the team it’s putting together for the 2019 World Cup in China, as well as the training camp that will take place in August before that event. Here are the highlights of that announcement:

More withdrawals:

Nuggets big man Paul Millsap has joined the ever-growing list of players from Team USA’s initial 20-man roster who have decided not to participate in this year’s World Cup. As expected, Cavaliers power forward Kevin Love has also withdrawn from Team USA’s 2019 roster.

Millsap and Love join Bradley Beal, Anthony Davis, Eric Gordon, James Harden, Tobias Harris, Damian Lillard, and CJ McCollum among the original invitees who have removed their names from World Cup consideration.

New invitees:

Team USA confirmed that Thaddeus Young, Marcus Smart, Julius Randle, and Jaylen Brown will join the training camp roster for next month, as previous reports indicated.

In addition to those four players, two big men will join the roster as well, with Clippers center Montrezl Harrell and Nuggets center Mason Plumlee have received invitations from USA Basketball. Assuming the remaining 11 players from the original 20-man roster remain committed, that would bring the roster back up to 17.

[UPDATE: Harrell may turn down his invitation]

Those 11 other players are Harrison Barnes, Andre Drummond, Kyle Kuzma, Brook Lopez, Kyle Lowry, Khris Middleton, Donovan Mitchell, Jayson Tatum, P.J. Tucker, Myles Turner, and Kemba Walker.

Select Team:

For the first time, USA Basketball confirmed the players who will make up the Select Team at next month’s training camp in Las Vegas. The members of the 13-man Select Team will practice and scrimmage with Team USA’s training camp invitees, and will be coached by Jeff Van Gundy.

It’s possible that a player could be elevated from the Select Team to the primary roster and eventually find his way onto the 12-man squad that will play in China, but that’s probably a long shot.

The 13 players who will play for the Select Team are as follows:

  1. Jarrett Allen (Nets)
  2. Marvin Bagley III (Kings)
  3. Mikal Bridges (Suns)
  4. Jalen Brunson (Mavericks)
  5. John Collins (Hawks)
  6. Pat Connaughton (Bucks)
  7. De’Aaron Fox (Kings)
  8. Joe Harris (Nets)
  9. Jonathan Isaac (Magic)
  10. Mitchell Robinson (Knicks)
  11. Landry Shamet (Clippers)
  12. Derrick White (Spurs)
  13. Trae Young (Hawks)

Team USA’s training camp will take place during the week of August 5, while the World Cup itself is scheduled to run from August 31 to September 15.

NBA Announces 2018/19 All-Defensive Teams

The NBA has officially announced its All-Defensive teams for the 2018/19 season, with Jazz center Rudy Gobert once again coming in as the leading vote-getter.

Gobert, a candidate for Defensive Player of the Year, was listed on 99 of 100 ballots, with 97 of those ballots giving him a First Team vote, for a total of 196 points (two points per First Team vote; one point per Second Team vote). The All-Defensive nod ensures that the big man receives a $500K bonus, which had been considered likely since he was named to an All-Defensive team last season, tweets ESPN’s Bobby Marks.

Gobert was closely followed by fellow Defensive Player of the Year candidates Paul George (Thunder) and Giannis Antetokounmpo (Bucks), who received 195 and 193 total points, respectively.

[RELATED: NBA Announces 2018/19 All-Rookie Teams]

Pelicans guard Jrue Holiday secured a $100K bonus by earning a spot on the All-Defensive Second Team, notes Marks (via Twitter). Like Davis, he was an All-Defensive player last season as well, so that bonus had been considered likely — his cap hits for this year or next won’t be impacted by him earning it.

Here are the full voting results for the All-Defensive First and Second Teams, with each player’s point total noted in parentheses:

First Team:

Second Team:

Raptors guard Danny Green actually totaled 66 points, including 19 First Team votes, while Clippers guard Patrick Beverley had 48 points (14 First Team votes). However, All-Defensive teams are determined by position, so they didn’t make the cut because they ranked fifth and sixth in voting among guards.

Pacers center Myles Turner (39 points), Rockets forward P.J. Tucker (38), Raptors forward Pascal Siakam (24), and Spurs guard Derrick White (15) were the other leading vote-getters.

You can find the full voting results right here.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Southwest Notes: Faried, Grizzlies, Caboclo, White

After being phased out of Denver’s rotation in 2017/18 and then becoming an afterthought in Brooklyn for the first half of this season, Kenneth Faried has experienced a career resurgence with the Rockets in recent weeks.

As Kelly Iko of The Athletic details, part of that resurgence can be attributed to Faried’s newfound three-point shot — after making three shots from beyond the arc in his first 453 NBA games, the big man has made six of 13 since arriving in Houston. As Faried tells it, he always had the ability to expand his shooting range, but wasn’t encouraged to do so until he signed with the Rockets.

“People always said I couldn’t shoot the three, and it wasn’t that. I just never took them,” Faried said. “Now that I’m taking them, people go, ‘Whoa, your shot is nice actually. Wow. You have a soft shot.’ I always had this, I just never did it. It was a respect thing — I knew how to get on the floor for my coaches.”

While Faried is currently day-to-day with a hip issue, he looks like a potential fixture in the Rockets’ rotation moving forward. In 16 games with the club (27.9 MPG), he has posted 14.9 PPG and 9.4 RPG on 60.2% shooting, and has even earned some playing time alongside center Clint Capela.

Here’s more out of the Southwest:

  • The Grizzlies will send their first-round pick to the Celtics if it falls outside of the top eight this spring, and have indicated they’d prefer to surrender it in 2019 rather than in a future year. David Cobb of The Memphis Commercial Appeal explains why, and lays out the various scenarios for that pick.
  • Bruno Caboclo‘s new two-year deal with the Grizzlies doesn’t include any guaranteed money for next season, Eric Pincus of Basketball Insiders confirms (via Twitter). However, according to Pincus, Caboclo will get a partial guarantee worth $300K if he remains under contract through July 10.
  • After missing six games for the Spurs in February, second-year guard Derrick White is back in the team’s lineup. San Antonio will need White to stay healthy down the stretch as the team pushes to secure a spot in the postseason, as Tom Orsborn of The San Antonio Express-News writes. “Derrick is important because he keeps everything a little bit more together,” head coach Gregg Popovich said. “Everybody understands where to be with Derrick out there. He has a great pace about him.”

Southwest Notes: Mavericks, Conley, White

In what is a surprise to many, the Mavericks are the current kings of Texas, having jumped out to a strong 13-11 start. As Brad Townsend writes for SportsDay Dallas, the additions of Luka Doncic and DeAndre Jordan have helped boost the Mavericks from the lottery to the playoff picture.

Doncic has been sensational as a rookie, averaging 18.2 points, 6.5 rebounds and 4.1 assists per game while hitting several clutch shots down the stretch of games. Jordan has improved the Mavericks’ rebounding and has provided an interior presence that the team has lacked in recent years.

Meanwhile, the Mavericks’ bench has been very successful, as J.J. Barea and Dwight Powell have played well in their specified roles. With Rick Carlisle at the helm, the Mavericks appear to be a very competitive team this season that has a good chance of sneaking into the playoffs.

There’s more from the Southwest division:

  • Mike Conley is struggling with a dislocated finger, which hampered his play against the Lakers last week. As David Cobb reveals for Commercial Appeal, Conley had trouble holding the ball, which obviously isn’t a good thing for the Grizzlies‘ leading guard. Conley believes the swelling and discomfort will improve in the coming days.
  • Derrick White continues to work on regaining his confidence and comfort after coming back from injury earlier this season. Jabari Young of The Athletic details the support that White has received from the Spurs‘ coaching staff and some of his teammates as he looks to make his mark in the Spurs’ depleted backcourt.
  • A recent Southwest notes post detailed Dirk Nowitzki‘s upcoming return to action, how the addition of Joakim Noah impacts other bigs on the Grizzlies roster and much more.

Injury Updates: Powell, Butler, Muscala, White

It sounds like Raptors swingman Norman Powell will be sidelined for an extended period, as Blake Murphy of The Athletic tweets. Powell, who suffered a subluxation (partial dislocation) of his left shoulder in Monday’s win over Utah, currently has his arm in a sling and will undergo further tests once the team is back in Toronto.

In an official press release issued this afternoon, the Raptors didn’t offer a timeline for Powell’s recovery, announcing that he’ll be out indefinitely. However, head coach Nick Nurse told reporters today that the 25-year-old will likely be on the shelf for “weeks,” with ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski suggesting (via Twitter) that it could be four to six weeks.

Here are a few of the more noteworthy injury updates from around the NBA:

  • Jimmy Butler, the subject of ongoing trade rumors and speculation, “should be a go” for the Timberwolves tonight against the Lakers, head coach Tom Thibodeau said today (Twitter link via ESPN’s Brian Windhorst). Butler has missed two of Minnesota’s last four games due to “general soreness” and “precautionary rest.”
  • The Sixers continue to have trouble getting all their new rotation players healthy at the same time. Wilson Chandler is back in action now, but Mike Muscala will miss at least the next week after breaking his nose in a practice on Tuesday, per the team (link via Chris Mannix of SI.com).
  • A trio of injured players are just about ready to make their 2018/19 debuts. Spurs point guard Derrick White will be available to play tonight (Twitter link via Jeff McDonald of The San Antonio Express-News), as will Kings wing Bogdan Bogdanovic (Twitter link via James Ham of NBC Sports California). Meanwhile, Nets forward DeMarre Carroll may play as soon as Friday in Denver (link via Brian Lewis of The New York Post).

Southwest Notes: Gentry, Morrow, Gasol, White

Pelicans coach Alvin Gentry weighed in on the comments made by former NBA commissioner David Stern, labeling the importance of staying focused on the current team instead of outside noise. Stern ripped Pelicans GM Dell Demps this week, calling him a “lousy general manager.”

“For us, we worry about our team,” Gentry said, according to Will Guillory of The Athletic (Twitter link). “We worry about our franchise. I’ve got a great working relationship with Dell. I think we’ve got a good team that we put out on the floor because of he and (president) Mickey (Loomis). That’s all I need to say. I think what has happened here is our franchise has a really bright future and that’s all that needs to be said.”

The Pelicans have started the 2018/19 season on a red-hot note, winning each of their three games in impressive fashion. Led by Anthony Davis, Jrue Holiday and a nice collection of young assets, New Orleans has designed its roster to compete for many years to come.

The Pelicans also released a statement on Stern’s comments, backing their general manager and claiming their excitement for playing under current NBA commissioner Adam Silver.

Here are other notes from the Southwest Division:

  • Free agent Anthony Morrow is interested in joining the Rockets if the team looks for additional shooting, according to The Athletic’s Kelly Iko. “Absolutely,” Morrow said. Mike (D’Antoni) knows I love him, tell him to give me a call.”
  • Marc Gasol is dealing with neck soreness and is considered day-to-day, the Grizzlies said (Twitter link). Gasol suffered the injury on Wednesday against the Kings, with fears that he could miss extended time.
  • Despite having no timetable for a return, Spurs guard Derrick White continues to progress in his recovery from left heel pain that’s sidelined him since the preseason, according to Tom Orsborn of the San Antonio Express-News (Twitter link). “He’s progressing as they hoped,” coach Gregg Popovich said.

Spurs’ Derrick White To Miss 6-8 Weeks

1:05pm: The Spurs have provided an official update on White, announcing that he suffered a left plantar fascia tear. The press release didn’t provide a specific timeline for his return.

10:23am: The Spurs‘ injury luck has gone from bad to worse this preseason, as a third San Antonio player – and second point guard – is expected to miss an extended period of time. Derrick White has suffered a heel injury and will be sidelined for six to eight weeks, according to head coach Gregg Popovich (Twitter link via Jeff McDonald of The San Antonio Express-News).

It’s a bad break for White, who had been poised to take on a larger role for the Spurs with starting point guard Dejounte Murray expected to miss the entire season with a torn ACL. Initial reports in the wake of Murray’s injury suggested that San Antonio would replace him from within, but with White also on the shelf now, it’s possible those plans could change.

Patty Mills and non-guaranteed camp invitee Nick Johnson are now the only healthy point guards on the roster, though DeMar DeRozan figures to assume some of the ball-handling duties. The Spurs could keep an eye on the waiver wire in the next few days — if any reliable veteran point guards become available, they could be of interest to San Antonio.

White, the Spurs’ first-round pick in 2017, played limited minutes in his rookie season, averaging 3.2 PPG and 1.5 RPG in 17 games (8.2 MPG). With Tony Parker no longer on the roster, San Antonio was set to lean more heavily on White in 2018/19, even before Murray went down. That likely won’t happen until December now.

Meanwhile, this year’s first-round pick – Lonnie Walker – is also expected to be out until at least mid- to late-November after undergoing knee surgery.

Spurs Plan To Replace Murray From Within

There’s no sign the Spurs will acquire a point guard via trade or free agency in the aftermath of Dejounte Murray‘s season-ending knee injury, Jabari Young of The Athletic reports.

Murray was diagnosed with a torn right ACL after suffering the knee injury against the Rockets on Sunday. San Antonio is prepared to go into the season with Derrick White, its first-round pick out of Colorado last year, as the starter. White appeared in 17 games in his rookie campaign but the Spurs would prefer to leave veteran Patty Mills on the second unit, Young continues.

Discussions with veteran free agent guard Jamal Crawford did not gain traction, Young adds.

Coach Gregg Popovich wouldn’t commit to White as the starter but that appears to be the path he’ll choose.

“We know what his skills are,” Popovich told Young and other media members. “But we have to wait to see who works with who the best and what seems to fit spacing-wise and how many basketballs we might need at a specific time in a game. But wherever we put Derrick, he’s going to be in the mix someplace.”

White posted solid numbers in the G League last season after recovering from a wrist fracture and continued to fill the stat sheet in summer league play, Spencer Davies of Basketball Insiders notes.

Murray’s strength is defense while White is considered a better shooter. White possesses a better mid-range shot than Murray and has drawn comparisons to former Spurs guard George Hill.

Leaving Mills on the second unit with Marco Belinelli, Davis Bertans, Bryn Forbes, and either Pau Gasol or Jakob Poeltl would be a better fit since he can look to score more often with that group, according to Young.

 

Spurs Exercise 2019/20 Options On Jakob Poeltl, Derrick White

The Spurs have exercised the 2019/20 options in the contracts of Jakob Poeltl and Derrick White, the team announced in a press release. The club also exercised the $2.3MM option in Dejounte Murray’s contract for the season, as we noted earlier.

Poeltl was traded to the Spurs as part of a package featuring Kawhi Leonard and DeMar DeRozan in July, and is expected to provide depth in the frontcourt for San Antonio. His maturity and focus at the age of 22 has impressed Spurs’ staffers in his short time with the team.

Poeltl appeared in all 82 contests with the Raptors last season, holding per-game averages of 6.9 points, 4.8 rebounds and 18.6 minutes. He was drafted with the No. 9 pick in 2016 after playing two collegiate seasons at Utah.

White, a 6’5″ combo guard who’s in his second NBA season, was selected by the Spurs with the 29th pick in 2017. He played just 17 games last season with the franchise, spending most of his time with the team’s G League affiliate Austin Spurs.

The Spurs have a cap charge of $3.7MM for 2019/10 by picking up Poeltl’s team option, and a separate charge of $1.9MM by exercising White’s option. Poeltl’s rookie contract is due to expire in 2020, while White has a fourth-year option for the 2020/21 campaign.