Doron Lamb

Southwest Rumors: Nowitzki, Rockets, Lamb

Dirk Nowitzki remains the focal point for the Mavericks and while he’s slowed down in some ways, he’s handling the burden well, according to Tim MacMahon of ESPNDallas.com. While the 37-year-old power forward can’t create off the dribble like he used to, he’s shooting over 50% from the field as well as on his 3-point attempts, MacMahon continues. Dallas has been unable the past four offseasons to make him their second-best player, MacMahon adds, but he’s still one of the league’s most efficient shooters. Nowitzki’s body has held up remarkably well over the years, Eddie Sefko of the Dallas Morning News points out, but the Mavs need to have a diverse attack with a variety of players taking big shots.

In other news around the Southwest Division:

  • With his full complement of point guards available, interim Rockets coach J.B. Bickerstaff plans to juggle them in creative ways, Jonathan Feigen of the Houston Chronicle reports. Patrick Beverley, Ty Lawson and Jason Terry will share the position and Bickerstaff will pair them up at times, Feigen adds. “I think we’re going to try to play those guys together,” Bickerstaff told Feigen. “We’re going to stick with our same starting lineup. We like the leadership Jet [Terry] brings with that first group. But then we’re going to bring those other guys in off the bench.”
  • Doron Lamb, who was waived by the Mavericks during training camp in 2014, has signed with Buducnost in Montenegro, the team announced via Facebook (translation via Sportando’s Emiliano Carchia). The Mavs had retained Lamb’s D-League rights by making him one of their affiliate players with NBA experience. Lamb previously played in the NBA with both the Bucks and Magic.
  • Power forward Ryan Anderson is averaging more than 19 points a game but Pelicans coach Alvin Gentry said his defense has been even more essential to his club, Jeff Zillgitt of USAToday.com reports. “Ryan’s really scoring the basketball. But where he’s really helped us is that he’s really improved defensively,” Gentry told reporters, including Zillgitt. “His rebounding and physicality that he plays with has been the things that have helped us the most.”

And-Ones: Cavs, D-League, Temple

Not surprisingly, three of the NBA’s four unbeaten teams reside in the Western Conference, where the Warriors, Rockets and Grizzlies are all 3-0. The East’s lone unbeaten is the franchise that’s won the last four conference championships, but it’s nonetheless surprising to see the Heat back atop the conference standings after they lost LeBron James this past summer. While we wait to see if Miami will continue to reign without King James, here’s the latest from around the league:

  • The Cavs feel like they made concessions in their final extension offer to Tristan Thompson, which exceeded $48MM over four years, but neither side has any hard feelings in the wake of the failed negotiations, according to Sam Amico of Fox Sports Ohio.
  • NBA teams kept the D-League rights to 47 players cut during camp this year, the D-League announced, listing all of them. The Mavs, Warriors and Suns used all four spots available to each NBA team to reserve the rights to such players, so they can’t keep the D-League rights to anyone they waive during the regular season, unlike the rest of the teams in the NBA. Renaldo Balkman, Bernard James, Doron Lamb, Hasheem Thabeet, Peyton Siva, Malcolm Lee and Earl Barron are this year’s “affiliate players” with NBA experience.
  • Garrett Temple refrains from drinking, smoking and tattoos, and he’s convinced the straight-arrow approach has helped him win jobs during his career, as Jorge Castillo of The Washington Post observes. Injuries to others have thrust Temple into the starting lineup for the Wizards, who re-signed him this summer for two years at the minimum salary.

Mavs Waive James, Johnson, Lamb

The Mavericks have officially waived Bernard James, Ivan Johnson, and Doron Lamb, the team has announced. These moves bring Dallas’ preseason roster count down to the league maximum 15, so no further roster moves would be required prior to beginning the regular season. This also means that Charlie Villanueva and his non-guaranteed contract is likely to make the regular season roster, though that’s just my speculation.

James’ contract was fully guaranteed for $915,243, and the team has reportedly looking to trade the center, but apparently no takers were found. Lamb’s deal came with no guarantee, but Johnson’s contract included a partial guarantee of $25K, which the  Mavs will be responsible to pay.

It’s not clear if the team will look to send any of these players to the NBA D-League at this time. Teams can retain the D-League rights for up to four players. Lamb would seem to be the most likely of the bunch for Dallas to try and develop down in the D-League, seeing as he’s the youngest of the players that were waived, and has the most potential upside.

Mavs Notes: Additions, Chandler, Lamb, Analytics

The new-look Mavericks introduced most of their offseason additions today at a press conference, as Earl K. Sneed of Mavs.com writes. In adding Chandler Parsons, Raymond Felton, Tyson Chandler, Jameer Nelson, Al-Farouq Aminu and Richard Jefferson, Dallas bolstered a roster that took the champion Spurs to seven games with six veterans that were primary starters on NBA rosters last season, as owner Mark Cuban explained:

“I think we’ve got a group where everybody has had their own personal success but not a lot of team success or great team success,” Cuban said. “So, coming here, we don’t have guys that are looking to just throw up numbers. They’ve already done that and now they’re looking to win. You know, they’re not 21 or 22 anymore, and they’re ready to win. That’s going to have a big impact.”

Here are some other notes coming out of Dallas on Tuesday:

  • Cuban also implied today that he made a mistake in allowing Chandler to leave Dallas in free agency in 2011, writes Tim MacMahon of ESPN Dallas. Cuban was responding to a question from a fan who asked whether Chandler, who will again be a free agent next summer, will remain in Dallas beyond this season. Neither Cuban nor Chandler, who also spoke to media, offered many clues as to the answer, though MacMahon indicates that both sides are happy to be reunited.
  • As Eric Pincus of Basketball Insiders confirms, Doron Lamb‘s minimum-salary deal with the Mavericks covers just one season (via Twitter).
  • Many of the Mavericks additions were strategic decisions based on an improving analytical department, writes Jeff Caplan of NBA.com. Both Cuban and head coach Rick Carlisle discussed the team’s analytics push at length on Tuesday, according to Caplan, who adds that Mavs stats guru Roland Beech was given “carte blanche to hire as needed” in an effort to catch up to the stats-savvy Spurs.

Mavs Sign Doron Lamb

The Mavericks have signed shooting guard Doron Lamb, the team announced (Twitter link). All of the terms aren’t immediately clear, but Dallas is limited to giving out no more than the minimum salary. There’s no guaranteed money involved, according to Tim MacMahon of ESPNDallas (on Twitter).

Lamb, who turns 23 in November, has been on the market since shortly after the Magic waived him at the end of June to avoid guaranteeing his minimum salary for the season. Up to that point he’d been on the same contract that he’d signed after the Bucks made him the 42nd overall pick in 2012. He put up similar numbers in his first two seasons in the league, split between Milwaukee and Orlando. The Arn Tellem client has averaged 3.5 points in 12.7 minutes per game in the NBA, but he’s made his mark with 39.4% shooting on 1.3 three-point attempts per contest.

It’ll be an uphill battle for Lamb if he’s to make the opening-night roster, since Dallas already has 15 fully guaranteed deals, plus partially guaranteed arrangements with Eric Griffin and Ivan Johnson. Charlie Villanueva is also with the Mavs on a non-guaranteed deal.

Magic Waive Doron Lamb

The Magic have waived Doron Lamb, the team announced, confirming a report from Josh Robbins of the Orlando Sentinel. His minimum-salary contract was set to go from non-guaranteed to fully guaranteed if the team hadn’t waived him by the end of Tuesday.

The 22-year-old shooting guard hits unrestricted free agency after his second season in the league, having averaged 3.6 points in 13.1 minutes per game for Orlando this past year. He came to the Magic as part of the J.J. Redick trade with the Bucks at the deadline in 2013.

Milwaukee made the Arn Tellem client the 42nd overall pick in 2012, but last season’s production to similar to his output as a rookie. He’ll likely be in the market for another minimum-salary deal, perhaps with a partial guarantee.

Magic Notes: Harkless, Nicholson, Canada

Hoops World's Alex Kennedy wrote about the young core Rob Hennigan has acquired since his term as Magic general manager started in 2012. The Magic's roster has been growing closer this offseason, akin to the young Thunder team Hennigan worked for before joining the Magic. 

The youthful Magic players mentioned in the piece, Maurice Harkless, Tobias Harris, Nikola Vucevic, rookie Victor Oladipo, Andrew Nicholson, Kyle O'Quinn, and Doron Lamb only took a couple weeks off after the season concluded in April before returning to Orlando.

Once in town, they all work out, lift weights and scrimmage five-on-five together before hanging out off the court to grab food, play cards or watch TV at someone's house at night.

Said Harkless of all the time spent together, “I think it’s really important. We pretty much spend all of our time together, whether it’s in the gym or just hanging out at a guy’s house playing video games, watching TV or playing Spades. We just spend a lot of time together. I think it’s really good. It’s going to help us build chemistry, on the court and off of the court.”

It's that same chemistry Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook, Serge Ibaka, Jeff Green, James Harden and Eric Maynor developed while they were all growing together in Oklahoma City with Hennigan looking on. Whether the Magic go on to reach the upper-tier as one of the NBA's true title-contenders, remains to be seen, but Magic fans have to like the growing bond between their young players.

  • This summer, Josh Robbins of the Orlando Sentinel reported that the Magic were going to pick up the options on four of the players mentioned in Kennedy's piece who are all on their rookie-scale deals: Harris, Vucevic, Harkless and Nicholson.
  • Picking up the options on all four – they have until October 31st, but Robbins believed the options could be picked before the 1st of October – means they'll be under contract in Orlando through the 2014/15 season. Next summer, the Magic will decide on fourth-year options for Harkless and Nicholson and an extension for Vucevic. 
  • Nicholson played well for team Canada tonight during their 81-74 loss to the Dominican Republic at the FIBA Americas qualifying tournament, tweets the Toronto Sun's Ryan Wolstat. Nicolson's play was one of the only bright spots in the game for Canada (Twitter).
  • According to another Wolstat tweet, Canada needs Puerto Rico to beat Venezuela tonight and Mexico tomorrow while Canada also needs to defeat Argentina tomorrow to grab a spot in the 2014 FIBA World Championships in Spain next summer.

Zillgitt On Wizards, Rockets, Redick, FIBA

Jeff Zillgitt of USA Today has a new column in which he touches on a variety of topics from around the NBA and elsewhere in the basketball world. Here are the highlights:

  • Wizards head coach Randy Wittman talks to Zillgitt about the difficulty of keeping the locker room engaged as Washington heads towards another losing season.
  • Zillgitt takes a look at the Rockets' offense, which has vaulted them into the thick of the playoff race behind the explosive play of James Harden.
  • Zillgitt also gives an update on the status of Royce White, who has struggled in the D-League but does not concern the Rockets organization.
  • The Magic received excellent value in return for J.J. Redick, Zillgitt writes. He praises the aquisition of cheap, young assets in Doron Lamb and Tobias Harris, as well as a capable veteran with an expiring contract in Beno Udrih.
  • Many international players in the NBA are looking ahead to FIBA's Eurobasket tournament this summer, Zillgitt writes.

Recap Of Deadline Trades

A complete recap of trades that were completed before Thursday's trade deadline:

Bucks To Acquire Redick In Six-Player Deal

The Magic have agreed to trade J.J. Redick to the Bucks, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports (via Twitter). According to Wojnarowski, Milwaukee will send Doron Lamb, Beno Udrih, and Tobias Harris to Orlando in the deal (Twitter link). Along with Redick, Gustavo Ayon and Ish Smith are heading to Milwaukee, tweets Wojnarowski.

After a flurry of Redick rumors leading up to the deadline, the Bucks emerged as the frontrunners in the hours leading up to 2:00pm, as the Spurs, Pacers, and other suitors fell out of the running. While it initially appeared that Milwaukee was targeting Redick to replace Monta Ellis if Ellis was part of a Josh Smith trade, the club ultimately pulled the trigger on Redick anyway, meaning the sharpshooter will join a backcourt that features Ellis and Brandon Jennings.

Meanwhile, the Magic had been seeking a first-round pick in exchange for Redick, but will instead acquire a pair of young prospects in Lamb and Harris, along with Udrih's $7.37MM expiring contract, which will come off the books this summer. According to various reports, the only first-round picks Orlando was offered for Redick would have been very late in the first round. Given the value of draft picks and rookie-scale contracts in the new CBA, teams seemed reluctant to give up any picks better than that.

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