Donovan Williams

Scotto’s Latest: Irving, Rockets, McMillan, D. Williams, Goodwin, Sumner

It seemed highly unlikely at times this past summer and fall that Nets star Kyrie Irving would even finish the season in Brooklyn, let alone stick with the team beyond 2022/23. But now several executives around the NBA believe that Irving will remain with the Nets this summer rather than leaving for a new team in free agency, according to Michael Scotto of HoopsHype.

“I think Kyrie ends up with a short extension with the Nets,” one executive predicted. “A sign-and-trade for Kyrie this summer would be tough given the length needed and assets to make it happen from another team. I think there’s an incentive for an extension on a one-plus-one or two-year deal.”

The Lakers, who were rumored to have interest in Irving during the 2022 offseason, loom as perhaps the biggest threat to lure him away from the Nets during the summer of 2023. They’re currently on track to open up about $30MM in cap space and could offer Kyrie the opportunity to form a Big Three alongside LeBron James and Anthony Davis.

Here’s more from Scotto:

  • The Rockets are expected to go “star hunting” during the offseason, according to Scotto, who notes that Houston will have a significant chunk of cap space and wants to be more competitive in 2023/24.
  • Echoing previous reports, Scotto says the prevailing belief from outside the Hawks‘ organization is that head coach Nate McMillan won’t still be coaching the team next season.
  • Donovan Williams‘ new two-way contract with the Hawks covers next season in addition to the rest of this one, according to Scotto, who tweets that Atlanta has long been intrigued by Williams’ upside.
  • Wizards two-way player Jordan Goodwin is a strong candidate to be promoted to Washington’s 15-man roster before the end of this season, assuming the team can open up a spot, league sources tell Scotto. Goodwin is 10th among Wizards in minutes played this season, having earned playing time over several players who are on standard contracts.
  • Before he signed with the Nets over the summer, guard Edmond Sumner also received interest from the Suns, Pistons, and Pacers, per Scotto. Sumner worked out for Phoenix and had a workout scheduled with Detroit that he had to miss due to COVID-19.

Hawks Sign Donovan Williams To Two-Way Deal, Cut Jarrett Culver

JANUARY 17, 10:13am: The Hawks have officially signed Williams to a two-way contract, as expected, the club confirmed in a press release.


JANUARY 14, 4:13pm: The Hawks have requested waivers on Culver, the team announced in a press release.


JANUARY 14, 1:16pm: Free agent swingman Donovan Williams is set to sign a two-way deal with the Hawks, sources inform Shams Charania of The Athletic (Twitter link). To make room, Atlanta will waive two-way shooting guard Jarrett Culver. Point guard Trent Forrest remains with the Hawks in the team’s other two-way slot.

Williams is currently with the Brooklyn’s NBAGL Long Island affiliate. The UNLV alum had been averaging 15.6 PPG for the Long Island Nets this year, per Charania.

According to Lauren L. Williams of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution (Twitter link), the Hawks view Williams as more of a project, but one possessing potentially higher upside than Culver. John Hollinger of The Athletic tweets that Williams showed what he was capable of during this season’s G League Winter Showcase, when he had two of his best games of the season.

In 10 games with the Hawks, including one start, Culver averaged 4.4 PPG and 3.8 RPG in just 13.7 MPG. The 23-year-old out of Texas Tech will now look to join his fourth NBA team in as many seasons, following prior stints with the Timberwolves and Grizzlies.

Nets Waive Donovan Williams; Heat Adding Jon Elmore

In a pair of unrelated moves, the Nets have waived Donovan Williams (Twitter link via Chris Milholen of NetsDaily), while the Heat are signing Jon Elmore to an Exhibit 10 contract, reports Anthony Chiang of The Miami Herald (via Twitter).

Williams, who was also on an Exhibit 10 deal, went undrafted this year out of UNLV. The 6’6” wing averaged 12.7 PPG and 3.3 RPG as a junior at UNLV last season, knocking down 43.6% of his 3-point attempts. If he goes unclaimed, he’ll be eligible for a $50K bonus if he spends at least 60 days with the Long Island Nets, Brooklyn’s G League affiliate.

Elmore, 26, went undrafted in 2019 after a standout college career at Marshall. He’s played professionally for European clubs in Italy, Hungary, Greece and Lithuania over the past three years.

According to Chiang, Elmore will report to Miami’s practice on Saturday prior to being waived, with the 6’3″ guard heading to the Heat’s G League affiliate, the Sioux Falls Skyforce. If he spends at least 60 days with the Skyforce, Elmore would receive a bonus worth up to $50K.

Nets Sign UNLV’s Donovan Williams To Exhibit 10 Deal

OCTOBER 12: The Nets have officially signed Williams, tweets Brian Lewis of The New York Post.


JUNE 24: Donovan Williams has agreed to a contract with the Nets, Jake Weingarten of Stockrisers.com tweets. It’s an Exhibit 10 deal, JD Shaw of Hoops Rumors reports (Twitter link).

The 6’6” wing averaged 12.7 PPG and 3.3 RPG as a junior at UNLV last season, knocking down 43.6% of his 3-point attempts. Williams played his first two college seasons with Texas.

An Exhibit 10 is a one-year, non-guaranteed minimum-salary contract that counts toward a team’s 20-man offseason roster limit, but doesn’t count against the cap unless the player makes the regular season roster.

A player on an Exhibit 10 contract can earn a bonus of up to $50K if he’s waived and then joins his team’s G League affiliate.

Atlantic Notes: Barnes, Udoka, Celtics, Knicks, Williams, Nets

After initially being against the Celtics‘ decision to suspend head coach Ime Udoka for the season, former NBA player Matt Barnes has since retracted those comments, Jason Anderson of the Sacramento Bee writes. Barnes says the situation is much worse than he originally realized.

“Last night, I spoke on this Ime Udoka situation without having all the facts, and I think as a part of the media, often the media speaks to something, and when they’re wrong, they won’t come out and say it,” Barnes said.

“Since I’m a part of the media now, and I try not to be like everyone else, I try to report and talk with facts and honesty, and I clearly have to say, last night, without knowing all the facts, I spoke on Ime Udoka’s defense, and after finding out the facts after I spoke, I erased what I posted because this situation in Boston is deep. It’s messy. It’s 100 times uglier than any of us thought.”

Barnes added that it’s not his place to share what he heard. Shams Charania of The Athletic initially reported that Udoka was suspended for having an improper, intimate and consensual relationship with a Celtics female staff member, but later stated that the staffer had accused Udoka of making “unwanted comments” to her.

Here are some other notes from the Atlantic:

Southeast Notes: Wizards, Magic, Williams, Heat, Hawks

The Wizards are scheduled to work out six draft-eligible players on Monday, according to Josh Robbins of The Athletic (Twitter link). Oklahoma’s Jordan Goldwire, Arkansas’ Chris Lykes, Kansas’ Remy Martin, Kansas State’s Mike McGuirl, Alabama’s Jaden Shackelford and Notre Dame’s Blake Wesley will attend the session.

As noted by Robbins, all six players are guards. The Wizards, who own the 10th and 54th overall picks in the draft, are coming off a season in which they finished with a 35-47 record, missing the playoffs.

Here are some other notes from the Southeast Division:

Northwest Notes: Eason, Connelly, Wolves, Thunder, Terry

LSU forward Tari Eason, who headlined the Trail Blazers‘ six-player workout on Friday, already has some connections to the franchise, writes Aaron Fentress of The Oregonian. A Seattle native, Eason’s high school coach was one-time Portland star Brandon Roy, and the Blazers’ roster already includes another recent LSU standout, Trendon Watford.

Although Portland likes Eason enough to see him in person, he probably won’t be in the mix for the seventh pick, which is the Blazers’ only current selection in the first round. Fentress notes that Eason has a wide variety of projections in mock drafts and has worked out for other teams ranging from Washington at No. 10 to Minnesota at No. 19. Eason says he’s tried to avoid such predictions as he prepares for draft night.

“I don’t really have a preference or really look into that sort of thing,” he said. “I don’t really get caught up in that. I just control the things that I can control.”

There’s more from the Northwest Division:

  • New Timberwolves president of basketball operations Tim Connelly is approaching the draft with an open mind, according to Jon Krawczynski of The Athletic. Minnesota needs more size, but may not find any attractive options with the 19th pick. The team also has three second-rounders at 40, 48 and 50 that may be used to facilitate a trade. “We feel good about adding another valuable piece, a good player at 19,” Connelly said. “There will potentially be some pretty cool opportunities to use that as a trade asset as well. Anytime you have four draft picks, it’s exciting. It’s the one day of the year where you really control what you can do, largely.”
  • Six players worked out Friday for the Timberwolves, tweets Andrew Slater of Pro Insight. They are Christian Braun of Kansas, Jordan Hall of St. Joseph’s, Dereon Seabron of North Carolina State, Jalen Williams of Santa Clara, Bryce McGowens of Nebraska and Donovan Williams of UNLV.
  • ESPN’s Jonathan Givony (Insider link) tries to build an ideal draft for the Thunder using their four picks. Givony’s simulation gives Oklahoma City Gonzaga’s Chet Holmgren at No. 2, Kentucky’s Shaedon Sharpe at No. 12, Wake Forest’s Jake LaRavia at No. 30 and Khalifa Diop of Gran Canaria at No. 34.
  • Jason Terry had his interview today as the Jazz search for their next head coach, tweets Tony Jones of The Athletic. Utah assistants Alex Jensen and Lamar Skeeter also interviewed this week.

Draft Notes: Mohammed, Decisions, 2022 Mock Drafts, More

Georgetown guard Aminu Mohammed, the No. 80 prospect on ESPN’s big board, will remain in the 2022 NBA draft, sources tell Jon Rothstein of CBS Sports (Twitter link). Mohammed averaged 13.7 PPG, 8.2 RPG, 1.8 APG, and 1.6 SPG in 31 games (32.2 MPG) as a freshman for the Hoyas, but struggled with his shot, posting a slash line of .379/.310/.722.

Guard Donovan Williams will also stay in the draft, he told Rothstein (via Twitter). Williams put up 12.7 PPG and 3.3 RPG for UNLV last season.

Northern Iowa guard AJ Green is staying in the draft, he told Cole Bair of 1650KCNZ and The Cedar Rapids Gazette (Twitter link). Green was a two-time Missouri Valley Conference Player of the Year for the Panthers.

Former Texas Tech guard Kevin McCullar is withdrawing from the draft and transferring to Kansas, reports Jeff Goodman of Stadium (via Twitter). McCullar averaged 10.1 PPG, 4.6 RPG, 3.1 APG, and 1.4 SPG as a junior in 2021/22.

With the NCAA’s withdrawal deadline less than four hours away, here are some more draft-related notes:

  • Former Minnesota guard Payton Willis worked out for the Timberwolves on Tuesday and also has a workout scheduled with the Grizzlies later this week, according to Darren Wolfson of 5 Eyewitness News (Twitter link). Willis has exhausted his eligibility after spending five seasons in college.
  • Jonathan Givony of ESPN provides his latest mock draft for ’22 (Insider link). He has Michigan’s Caleb Houstan, who just announced he’s staying in the draft, going No. 25 to the Spurs.
  • Jonathan Wasserman of Bleacher Report also released an updated mock draft, with inside information on several prospects. He reports that G League Ignite guard/forward Dyson Daniels could go as high as No. 4, while Ohio State’s Malaki Branham, another draft riser, could be a lottery pick in the Nos. 8-14 range.
  • In a separate article for ESPN (Insider link), Givony explores which ’22 draft prospects are comparable to five breakout players of the ’21/22 postseason. He writes that G League Ignite guard Jaden Hardy, projected to go No. 22 in his mock, resembles Golden State’s Jordan Poole as an aggressive scorer with questionable shot selection and defense.

David Roddy, Jake LaRavia, Others Declaring For NBA Draft

Colorado State junior David Roddy will test the NBA draft waters this spring, retaining the option to return to school, he tells Jonathan Givony of ESPN.

Roddy, who is the No. 31 prospect on ESPN’s big board, was named the Mountain West Conference Player of the Year this season after averaging 19.2 PPG, 7.5 RPG, 2.9 APG, and 1.2 SPG with a .571/.438/.691 shooting line in 31 games (32.9 MPG). The 6’6″, 260-pound forward helped lead Colorado State to its first NCAA tournament appearance in nine years.

“I am looking forward to showing NBA teams that I can thrive in any situation,” Roddy told ESPN. “Whether the pace is slow or fast, free flowing or stagnant, there are so many facets and intricacies that I have learned over time that will help me be one of the best and most important players on the court. But mostly I am just excited to chase a childhood dream and make it a reality.”

Wake Forest forward Jake LaRavia is also entering the 2022 NBA draft while maintaining his college eligibility, he announced on Tuesday night (via Twitter).

After transferring from Indiana State to Wake Forest, LaRavia was a full-time starter for the Demon Deacons as a junior in 2021/22, averaging 14.6 PPG, 6.6 RPG, 3.7 APG, and 1.7 SPG on .559/.384/.777 shooting in 33 games (34.2 MPG).

According to Mike Schmitz of ESPN, LaRavia doesn’t project to be a “true defensive stopper,” but he players hard and has good instincts and should be able to defend multiple positions at the next level. He’s currently the No. 40 prospect on ESPN’s board.

Here are some of the other players who are putting their names in the 2022 draft pool:

Expected to forgo remaining NCAA eligibility and stay in the draft:

Testing the draft waters:

Our running list of early entrants for this year’s draft can be found right here.