Dorell Wright

FA Rumors: LaVine, Parker, Jefferson, Beasley

While the Bulls and Zach LaVine aren’t necessarily close to a deal, the team has had communication with LaVine and his representatives, writes K.C. Johnson of The Chicago Tribune. According to Johnson, the Bulls assured LaVine that speculation they wanted to do a $14MM-per-year deal wasn’t accurate, and have “proactively” negotiated in good faith with his camp on a deal that could be in the range of $18MM annually.

That seems like a very reasonable number for LaVine, particularly since only two other teams can currently offer a deal worth anything close to that, and neither of those teams seems to be pushing hard for the Bulls guard. As Johnson details, the Bulls don’t want to let LaVine get away and aren’t eager to have him play on his qualifying offer, so it seems like there’s a good chance the two sides will eventually get something done.

Here are a few more free agent notes and rumors from around the NBA:

  • The market for Bucks RFA Jabari Parker hasn’t materialized like he hoped, tweets Jordan Schultz of Yahoo Sports, noting that there may be some league-wide concern about Parker’s attitude and health.
  • After being waived by the Pacers, Al Jefferson is considering playing overseas for the 2018/19 season, Indiana president of basketball operations Kevin Pritchard said today (Twitter link via Tony East of 8 Points, 9 Seconds).
  • Michael Beasley hasn’t heard from the Knicks since free agency began, according to Marc Berman of The New York Post. A source tells Berman that Beasley, who is drawing interest from a couple teams, is “disappointed” in the lack of interest from the Knicks, but understands that they’re “going young.”
  • Longtime NBA forward Dorell Wright is finalizing an agreement to sign with Lokomotiv Kuban in Russia, tweets international basketball reporter David Pick.

Western Notes: Clippers, Nuggets, Bjelica, Musa

The Clippers will bring in some first-round candidates for a pre-draft group workout on Wednesday, league sources tell Michael Scotto of The Athletic (Twitter link). According to Scotto, Miles Bridges (Michigan State), Kevin Knox (Kentucky), Aaron Holiday (UCLA), and Mitchell Robinson will participate in the session.

The Clippers currently hold the 12th and 13th overall picks in the draft, presenting a number of potential opportunities and directions for the club. Bridges and Knox are viewed as two potential lottery picks who may still be on the board at No. 12, while Holiday and Robinson are ranked slightly lower on most big boards.

Let’s round up a few more Western Conference notes…

  • Speaking last week to reporters, Nuggets president of basketball operations Tim Connelly said the team will target a strong defensive player with two-way versatility with the No. 14 pick, and didn’t rule out the possibility of trading or waiving highly-paid players to maintain cap flexibility. Matt L. Stephens of The Denver Post has the story and the quotes.
  • The Jazz and Suns are among the teams that could show interest in power forward Nemanja Bjelica this summer, a source tells Orazio Cauchi of Sportando. Bjelica is eligible for restricted free agency, so the Timberwolves have the chance to match any offer he receives, assuming they extend a qualifying offer.
  • Bosnian wing Dzanan Musa, a potential first-round pick who will be keeping his name in the 2018 NBA draft, has workouts on tap with the Trail Blazers, Nuggets, Spurs, and Jazz, tweets Scott Agness of Vigilant Sports.
  • Darren Wolfson of 5 Eyewitness News passes along word of a few more of the players who participated in the Timberwolvesveteran mini-camp on the weekend, tweeting that that Hollis Thompson, Dorell Wright, and Jordan McRae took part, among others.
  • Veteran guard Rodney Stuckey is participating in a free agent mini-camp with the Trail Blazers, a league source tells Michael Scotto of The Athletic (Twitter link).

And-Ones: De Colo, Okafor, Shumpert, Wright

French guard Nando De Colo has enjoyed some of the best seasons of his playing career in recent years, including earning EuroLeague MVP honors for CSKA Moscow in 2016. However, while De Colo is happy to continue playing in Europe and is concentrating on that for the time being, he admits that he hasn’t closed the door on the possibility of an NBA return.

De Colo spent two seasons with the Spurs and Raptors from 2013 to 2015, but never got to play a significant role during his first stint in the NBA, as he tells Spanish media outlet Farhampton Magazine (link via TalkBasket.net).

“The truth is that going to San Antonio was a somewhat complicated decision because I knew I could continue in Europe,” De Colo said. “I had contacts with Barcelona, for example. On the other hand, I wanted to go to the NBA and see how it was. In the Spurs, I didn’t have the opportunities I expected. I think that is a part of life that you can’t control.”

At age 30, De Colo still has time to return to the NBA, but given his starring role for CSKA, it’d be no surprise if he decided to remain overseas to finish his career.

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

  • The Timberwolves don’t have any interest in Jahlil Okafor, according to Darren Wolfson of 5 Eyewitness News (Twitter link). Okafor, who had his 2018/19 turned down by the Sixers, remains on the trade block and may even end up seeking a buyout.
  • Cavaliers swingman Iman Shumpert will be sidelined for at least the next five to seven days due to knee soreness, the team announced today in a press release. Shumpert, the subject of trade rumors throughout the offseason, is averaging a career-low 18.2 minutes per contest early this season for Cleveland.
  • Longtime NBA forward Dorell Wright, who appeared in 549 regular season games over the course of 11 NBA seasons, has signed in Germany with Brose Bamberg, the team recently announced (via Twitter). Wright last played in the NBA for Portland during the 2014/15 season.
  • Former NBA forward Al Harrington has taken an unusual career path since his days as a player ended, having gotten into the medical marijuana business. David Aldridge of NBA.com has an interesting and in-depth look at Harrington, who wants to encourage the NBA to consider the benefits of medical marijuana.

Clippers To Waive Dorell Wright, Xavier Munford

The Clippers are poised to cut a pair of camp invitees, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of The Vertical, who reports (via Twitter) that the team will waive Dorell Wright and Xavier Munford today. Both players have non-guaranteed salaries, so releasing them won’t affect the Clippers’ cap.

Wright, 30, spent most of last season in China before signing with the Heat in mid-April. He didn’t play any regular season games with Miami, but did appear in five playoff contests, averaging 3.2 points and 3.8 minutes per game. Prior to last season, Wright had appeared in 549 total NBA regular-season contests, spending time with the Heat, Warriors, Sixers, and Trail Blazers over the course of 11 years. In those seasons, he averaged 8.4 PPG and 3.8 RPG, and shot 36.5% on three-point attempts.

According to Ira Winderman of The South Florida Sun Sentinel (Twitter link), Wright bypassed an opportunity to return to China for the 2016/17 season in the hopes of earning a roster spot with the Clippers, his hometown team. Now that he’s returning to the free agent market, perhaps the veteran forward will head back overseas.

As for Munford, the 22-year-old made his NBA debut in March with the Grizzlies, joining the injury-ravaged Memphis roster for the stretch run. In his 14 contests with the team, Munford averaged 5.7 PPG, 2.2 RPG, and 1.6 APG, while connecting on 39.1% of his three-point attempts. Prior to getting called up by the Grizzlies, Munford scored an impressive 20.4 PPG to go along with 6.4 APG and a .412 3PT% for the 2015/16 Bakersfield Jam in the D-League.

The Clippers’ roster had featured 15 players on guaranteed salaries, with Wright and Munford representing the only non-guaranteed camp invitees, so the moves don’t come as a surprise. While Los Angeles could tweak its roster during the final couple weeks before the regular season begins, it appears the team will head into opening night with its current 15-man squad.

Contract Details: Brand, Rockets, Thunder, Pacers

With training camps underway, teams have now officially finalized the contract agreements with various camp invitees that had been reported over the past several weeks, meaning we have plenty of contract details to round up. As usual, Eric Pincus of Basketball Insiders has been busy reporting those details, updating his salary pages for teams around the NBA.

Because we have so many updates to pass along from Pincus, we’ll divide them up by players who received some guaranteed money from their teams, and those who didn’t. All of the links below point to the Basketball Insiders team salary pages, so be sure to click through for additional information.

Here are the latest salary updates from across the league, via Pincus:

Players receiving guaranteed money:

These players aren’t necessarily assured of regular-season roster spots. In fact, many of them likely received guarantees as an incentive to accept a D-League assignment. Still, for some players, larger guarantees should increase their odds of making 15-man rosters.

  • Thomas Walkup (Bulls): One year, minimum salary. $69.5K guaranteed.
  • Keith Benson (Heat): Two years, minimum salary. $75K guaranteed.
  • Henry Sims (Jazz): One year, minimum salary. $75K guaranteed.
  • Alex Poythress (Pacers): One year, minimum salary. $35,381 guaranteed.
  • Kevin Seraphin (Pacers): Two years, $3.681MM. First year ($1.8MM) guaranteed.
  • Julyan Stone (Pacers): One year, minimum salary. $50K guaranteed.
  • Gary Payton II (Rockets): Two years, minimum salary. First year ($543,471) guaranteed.
  • Isaiah Taylor (Rockets): Two years, minimum salary. $50K guaranteed.
  • Kyle Wiltjer (Rockets): Two years, minimum salary. $275K guaranteed.
  • Cat Barber (Sixers): One year, minimum salary. $50K guaranteed.
  • Elton Brand (Sixers): One year, minimum salary. $1MM guaranteed.
  • Derrick Jones (Suns): Three years, minimum salary. $42.5K guaranteed.
  • Alex Caruso (Thunder): One year, minimum salary. $50K guaranteed.
  • Kaleb Tarczewski (Thunder): One year, minimum salary. $75K guaranteed.
  • Chris Wright (Thunder): One year, minimum salary. $100K guaranteed.

Players receiving no guaranteed money:

The following players all signed one-year, minimum salary contracts with no guaranteed money. Many of these deals are “summer contracts,” which won’t count against a team’s cap unless the player earns a spot on the 15-man roster.

Clippers, Dorell Wright Agree To Deal

The Clippers have increased their training camp roster count to 17 players, according to Dan Woike of The Orange County Register, who reports (via Twitter) that the team is bringing in veteran forward Dorell Wright.

[RELATED: Clippers to sign Xavier Munford]

Wright, 30, spent most of last season in China before signing with the Heat in mid-April. He didn’t play any regular season games with Miami, but did appear in five playoff contests, averaging 3.2 points and 3.8 minutes per game. The Heat elected not to bring back the 6’9″ small forward after the postseason ended.

Prior to last season, Wright had appeared in 549 total NBA regular-season contests, spending time with the Heat, Warriors, Sixers, and Trail Blazers over the course of 11 years. In those seasons, he averaged 8.4 PPG and 3.8 RPG, and shot 36.5% on three-point attempts.

The Clippers already appear to have their roster for the coming season fairly set, with 15 players on guaranteed salaries. However, the team will bring in a few more players to compete in camp. Wright is the second reported camp invitee for Los Angeles, along with Xavier Munford.

Arthur Hill contributed to this post.

Wolves To Work Out Dorell Wright, Rasual Butler

Dorell Wright and Rasual Butler are among the players invited to a workout the Timberwolves have scheduled next week for veteran free agents, tweets Darren Wolfson of 5 Eyewitness News in Minneapolis.

Wright, 30, spent most of last season in China before signing with the Heat in mid-April. He didn’t play any regular season games with Miami, but did appear in five playoff contests, averaging 3.2 points and 3.8 minutes per game. The Heat elected not to bring back the 6’9″ small forward after the postseason ended.

The 37-year-old Butler appeared in 46 games for the Spurs last season before being waived in March. The 6’7″ swingman has been with eight franchises in his 14-year NBA career.

Heat Notes: Johnson, Wade, Haslem, McRoberts

The poison-pill contract that the Nets offered to Tyler Johnson will be difficult for Miami to match, writes Manny Navarro of The Miami Herald. Johnson will receive $50MM over for years, but the deal is heavily backloaded so that most of the money comes in the third and fourth seasons. The payout is $5.628MM in the first season and $5,881,260 in the second, followed by $18,858,765 in season three and $19,631,975 in season four. The Heat already have $70.3MM committed for the 2018/19 season among Chris Bosh, Hassan Whiteside and Goran Dragic. Miami will also need cap space in those years to keep Justise Winslow and Josh Richardson. Heat officials will have three days to make their decision once Johnson signs his deal with Brooklyn, but Whiteside and Richardson have already posted farewell messages on social media (Twitter links).

There’s more tonight out of Miami:

  • The Bucks will meet with Dwyane Wade sometime after the Fourth of July, tweets ESPN’s Marc Stein. Wade began looking at other teams after being unhappy with Miami’s initial contract offer. Milwaukee doesn’t have room to sign Wade to the deal he wants, but it could if it finds a taker for Greg Monroe (Twitter link).
  • If the Heat give approximately $20MM to Wade and don’t land Kevin Durant, they will have to fill the roster with a $2.9MM room exception and minimum contracts, writes Barry Jackson of The Miami Herald. Most of the room exception may be needed to re-sign Udonis Haslem. Miami hasn’t pursued Gerald Green since free agency began, but he could become an option if there’s nobody better at a minimum salary. The team appears to have no interest in bringing back Dorell Wright.
  • Miami may want to think twice about sacrificing Josh McRoberts for cap room, writes Ira Winderman of The Sun-Sentinel. The Heat may have to move his nearly $5.8MM salary for 2016/17 to create enough cap space to meet Wade’s demands, but if they keep the veteran big man, he might be the starter at power forward next season if Bosh isn’t healthy.

Heat Rumors: Whiteside, Wade, Johnson, Deng

In his Sunday column for The Miami Herald, Barry Jackson detailed a disagreement the Heat and Chris Bosh had over the idea of using blood thinners to allow him to return to the court as we outlined here. In addition to the report on Bosh though, Jackson provided the latest rumors and details on several other Heat-related topics, with a focus on the team’s free agents. Let’s dive in and round up the highlights…

  • The Heat would prefer to lock up Hassan Whiteside for something a little below the max, selling him on the lack of income tax in Florida, his comfort level with the Heat, and the fact that his current team could offer him bigger raises than any other suitor. Still, as Jackson points out, another free agent center option like Al Horford would have a higher max salary than Whiteside, so Miami could easily justify going to the max to keep the club’s incumbent center.
  • The Heat’s preference for Dwyane Wade‘s next deal would be to make it for just one year, to give the franchise flexibility in 2017. One Heat person estimates to Jackson that a one-year contract for Wade would be in the $15-20MM neighborhood.
  • Miami would like to re-sign Joe Johnson, but he may not be as willing as he was earlier this year to accept a discount to play in South Beach. The Heat would likely dangle the $2.9MM room exception for Johnson.
  • An Eastern Conference official expects Luol Deng to get a two-year deal that pays him at least $12MM annually. That price may be too steep for the Heat, even though they’d like to bring Deng back.
  • Amar’e Stoudemire, Gerald Green, and Dorell Wright aren’t expected to return to the Heat, though that could change if Stoudemire and Green are willing to re-sign for the minimum.

Heat Notes: Whiteside, Wright, Dragic

Hassan Whiteside‘s playoff performance may help the Heat determine how much they’re willing to pay him, writes Barry Jackson of The Miami Herald. If Whiteside contributes to a long postseason run, team president Pay Riley will be more inclined to give him a long-term contract starting at about $22MM per season. But an early exit or a poor performance might make management think twice about committing so much to the 26-year-old center, even though he led the NBA in blocks this season, tied for third in rebounding and finished third in field-goal percentage. “It’s very meaningful,” Whiteside said of the postseason. “Every day is a day I can try to leave an impression on the Heat. They really emphasize winning here. I want to make a good impression.”

There’s more news out of Miami:

  • Whiteside never enjoyed the reserve role that coach Erik Spoelstra had him play for about two months, according to Michael Wallace of ESPN.com. A lineup tweak just before the playoffs made Whiteside a starter again, and Dwyane Wade was glad to see it. “Coach did it and we all support whatever decisions he makes,” Wade said. “We haven’t played with [Whiteside] since [Chris Bosh] went out, so this is our first time. It was good as we get prepared for the playoffs.”
  • Dorell Wright may not get off the bench much in the playoffs, but he couldn’t be happier to be back in Miami, relays Ira Winderman of The Sun-Sentinel. The 30-year-old Wright, who played in China most of this season, officially signed with the Heat on Tuesday. Miami drafted Wright out of high school in 2004 and he spent his first six NBA seasons with the team. “It’s awesome, man, just the energy I felt as soon as I walked into the building was great,” he said. “It’s been a long time, somewhere I grew as a man, as a player, as a professional,” Wright said. “So just happy to be back. It’s been a long little journey for me.”
  • Goran Dragic‘s play in the postseason may also determine his future in Miami, Winderman writes in a separate piece. Winderman speculates that the Heat may decide to move Dragic this summer and use his salary-cap room on someone else.