Duane Washington

Contract Details: Muscala, Harden, Blazers, More

The new contract that veteran forward/center Mike Muscala signed with the Thunder is essentially identical to the one he signed with the team in 2021, Hoops Rumors has learned.

Muscala’s new deal covers two years and has matching $3.5MM cap hits in each of those two seasons for a total of $7MM. The first year is guaranteed, while the second year is a team option. All of those details also applied to the two-year, $7MM contract he signed in ’21.

The Thunder chose to decline Muscala’s $3.5MM team option for 2022/23 back in June, but will now pay him that exact salary next season, with another $3.5MM team option for ’23/24. Since Oklahoma City had Muscala’s Bird rights, the club didn’t have to dip into its mid-level exception to complete the signing.

Here are a few more details on recently signed contracts from around the NBA:

  • James Harden‘s new two-year contract with the Sixers will pay him exactly $33MM in 2022/23 and includes a 2023/24 player option worth $35.64MM. The two-year, $68.64MM pact includes a 15% trade kicker.
  • The training camp contracts that Norvel Pelle and Isaiah Miller signed with the Trail Blazers include Exhibit 10 language. That gives Portland the option of converting either contract into a two-way deal before the regular season begins.
  • The new two-way contracts signed by Duane Washington (Suns) and Trent Forrest (Hawks) are each just for one season.

Eastern Notes: Haslem, Robinson, Wizards, Pistons, Pacers, Washington

The Heat have a standing offer out to veteran big man Udonis Haslem, which means it’s up to the 42-year-old if he wants to return next season, Ira Winderman of the Sun Sentinel confirms in his latest “Ask Ira” mailbag.

Haslem has played fewer than 20 games in each of his past six seasons, but he plays an immense role in developing the team’s young players. He’s also served as a locker room leader, owning 19 years of NBA experience and winning three championships. He’s previously stated he has no interest in coaching.

Within the same article, Winderman also considered Duncan Robinson‘s status as a trade candidate, suggesting that Miami is unlikely to move Robinson for only a modest upgrade. With Robinson set to make $17MM this season, the Heat would likely need him for salary-matching purposes in order to acquire an impact player, so the club will be patient as it explores the trade market.

Here are some other notes from the Eastern Conference:

Suns Sign Duane Washington To Two-Way Deal

AUGUST 3: The Suns have issued a press release officially announcing the signing of Washington.


AUGUST 2: Free agent guard Duane Washington Jr. has agreed to a two-way contract with the SunsESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski tweets.

Washington, 22, averaged 9.9 PPG and 1.8 APG in 20.2 MPG for the Pacers as a rookie last season while appearing in 48 games, including seven starts. Washington went undrafted out of Ohio State.

Phoenix has both of its two-way slots open, so the team will able to sign another two-way player in addition to Washington, who adds depth at the point behind Chris Paul and Cameron Payne.

Washington was waived last month as Indiana cleared cap space to give restricted free agent Deandre Ayton an offer sheet that Phoenix matched. Washington played most of last season on a two-way deal, then received a standard multiyear contract. However, his salary for next season was not guaranteed and he was waived just before it became guaranteed.

Pacers Waive Duane Washington, Three Others

7:18pm: The four cuts are now official, according to a press release from the Pacers.


3:15pm: The Pacers are waiving Duane Washington and using the waive-and-stretch provision on Malik Fitts, Juwan Morgan and Nik Stauskas in order to create the necessary cap space to sign Deandre Ayton to a maximum-salary offer sheet, sources tell Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN (Twitter link).

Washington, 22, went undrafted last year after three college seasons with Ohio State. He signed a two-way contract with the Pacers and had a productive rookie season, appearing in 48 games (20.2 MPG) while averaging 9.9 PPG, 1.7 RPG and 1.8 APG on .404/.377/.754 shooting. More than half of his field goal attempts came from beyond the arc.

Washington received a promotion at the end of the season when his two-way deal was converted to a standard contract, but his salary for next season was non-guaranteed. He and the team previously agreed to push back his guarantee date from July 6 until July 15, so he’ll be released one day in advance of that deadline.

Fitts, Morgan and Stauskas were all sent to Indiana for salary-matching purposes as part of the trade that saw Malcolm Brogdon head to Boston. Each of the three players received significant guarantees on their minimum-salary contracts in order to complete the trade, but obviously none of them were part of Indiana’s long-term plans.

The stretch provision allows teams to pay players they waive over multiple years. In this case, the three salaries will be spread out over three seasons, because they were all waived between July 1 and August 31 and only had one year on their contracts.

Of the four players being waived, Washington seems like the best bet to immediately find a new team, whether it’s via waiver claim or a new deal after clearing waivers. Despite being a rookie, he had the most productive season in 2021/22, even if it was due in part to Indiana’s disappointing season that saw the team finish with a 25-57 record.

Pacers, Duane Washington Push Back Salary Guarantee Date

5:07pm: Agness has now corrected his initial report, tweeting that the Pacers and Washington agreed to push back the guard’s salary guarantee date to July 15.


4:47pm: The 2022/23 contract for Pacers guard Duane Washington became fully guaranteed today as he remained on the roster past the guarantee date, tweets Scott Agness of Fieldhouse Files.

Washington, who will make $1.56MM next season, also has a non-guaranteed $1.84MM contract for 2023/24. The guarantee date for that season is June 30, 2023.

The 22-year-old signed a two-way deal with Indiana last summer after going undrafted out of Ohio State. He was upgraded to a standard contract in early April, shortly before the end of the regular season.

Washington appeared in 48 games as a rookie, making seven starts, and averaged 9.9 points, 1.7 rebounds and 1.8 assists in 20.2 minutes per night.

Central Notes: LaVine, DeRozan, Holiday, Hill, Bucks, Pacers

Should the Bulls be worried about Zach LaVine going to another team as an unrestricted free agent this summer? Darnell Mayberry of The Athletic explores that topic, noting that while Chicago can offer LaVine more years and money (five years, $212MM) than other teams (four years, $157MM), the two-time All-Star was noncommittal at his end-of-season media session.

I’ve been here for the last five years, and I’ve really enjoyed my time,” LaVine said. “I think the city – and I hope everybody – understands how much I care about the Bulls and what I’ve done for the city and things like that.

Obviously, you guys have been a really soft spot in my heart, and I have to do this as a business decision as a man, not to just be viewed one way, and be, like, ‘I’m automatically coming back’ or ‘I’m automatically leaving.’ It’s unrestricted free agency. For my family and me, I have to go into this like it’s a decision where I have to be open-eyed.”

Here’s more from the Central:

  • In a question and answer session with Joe Cowley of The Chicago Sun-Times, Bulls star DeMar DeRozan said he thinks Bucks guard Jrue Holiday is the most underrated player in the NBA at the moment. “Wow, that’s a great one … most underrated … most underrated from my opinion and one of my favorite players to watch I would say is Jrue Holiday, yeah, Jrue Holiday,” DeRozan said.
  • Bucks veteran guard George Hill is listed as probable for Saturday’s Game 3 against the Celtics, tweets Eric Nehm of The Athletic. Hill has been dealing with an abdominal strain and has yet to play this postseason, but he was able to practice on Thursday and could see some action today.
  • Jamal Collier of ESPN lists four keys to the Bucks repeating as NBA champions this season. One key is making up for the production of injured star Khris Middleton, who’s sidelined with a sprained MCL. “Khris clearly is a huge part of what we do, but we have a lot of talented guys on our team,” Brook Lopez said. “We’re going to see a lot of different guys, I think, stepping up on different nights.”
  • Keifer Sykes recently spoke to James Boyd of The Indianapolis Star about his rookie season with the Pacers. Sykes was waived by the team just before the season ended. “I did everything that I could do,” Sykes said. “Even when I look up and think about the day I got cut, the night before, after that (last home) game, I was in the gym until like 12 or 1 a.m., so I squeezed everything I got out of the Pacers thing. That’s not gonna stop me from having camps back home and finishing it with this one. I’m very much at peace with the situation. … A lot of players don’t have peace in free agency.”
  • Sykes was waived to accommodate standard deals for undrafted Pacers rookies Terry Taylor and Duane Washington, who were both promoted from two-way contracts. Taylor said it was a dream come true, as Boyd relays in another story. “My agent called me and was like, ‘Yo, we’re gonna get this done Thursday (April 7),’ so he was telling me congrats,” Taylor said. “After we hung up the phone, I just prayed because it finally happened. My dream came true.”

Pacers Notes: Taylor, Washington, York, Hinton, Cavs’ Pick

Pacers rookie Terry Taylor got a total of $1.225MM in guaranteed money in his new three-year contract with the Pacers, reports ESPN’s Bobby Marks (via Twitter). Having been promoted from a two-way deal, Taylor got a $600K rest-of-season salary, with a $625K partial guarantee for 2022/23.

Duane Washington, who was also promoted to the standard roster from his two-way contract, received $950K in rest-of-season money, but won’t have any of his salary for ’22/23 guaranteed, Marks notes.

The Pacers used their mid-level exception to sign both Taylor and Washington, which permitted the team to give them three-year contracts and salaries above the minimum in 2021/22. Their second and third seasons will be worth the minimum.

Washington will have his minimum salary for ’22/23 guaranteed if he remains under contract through July 6, while Taylor will need to remain on his deal through July 10 to earn a full guarantee for next season.

Here’s more out of Indiana:

  • Gabe York, a 28-year-old rookie who signed a two-way contract with the Pacers on Thursday, is thrilled to finally get the opportunity to make his NBA debut this weekend, writes James Boyd of The Indianapolis Star. “It’s been seven years, long time since I’ve been trying for this dream to kind of happen,” York said. “Five years overseas, played one stint in the G League with the Lakeland Magic. Seven years of just blood, sweat and tears finally getting this opportunity, so I’m definitely excited and ready for this moment for sure.”
  • York added that his mother was “crying all on the phone” when he told her about his deal with Indiana and said he’d “try not to cry” himself when he makes his NBA debut. “Got the NBA contract for a little bit,” he said. “Now next season is to try to stay in the NBA for a full season and get my mom to stop working.”
  • Nate Hinton, the other player who signed a two-way deal with Indiana on Thursday, has entered the league’s COVID-19 health and safety protocols, as Boyd relays (via Twitter).
  • The Pacers are far removed from the playoff picture, but they’ll have a rooting interest in the play-in tournament next week, Boyd observes in a separate article for The Star. If the Cavaliers earn a playoff berth, Indiana will get Cleveland’s 2022 first-round pick. If the Cavs are eliminated in the play-in, they’ll keep that pick and would instead owe the Pacers their 2023 first-rounder (also lottery-protected).

Gabe York, Nate Hinton Sign Two-Way Deals With Pacers

The Pacers have signed G League guards Gabe York and Nate Hinton to two-way contracts, the team announced in a press release.

Indiana also confirmed that Duane Washington and Terry Taylor, who had both been on two-way deals, have received standard contracts that will cover multiple years. The team officially waived Keifer Sykes to make room on the 15-man roster for both players.

York averaged 21.8 points, 4.8 rebounds and 4.4 assists in 34 games with the Fort Wayne Mad Ants. The 28-year-old played three seasons in the G League and spent time overseas as well after going undrafted out of Arizona in 2016. His only previous NBA experience came in attending training camp with the Magic in 2018 on an Exhibit 10 contract.

Hinton, 22, averaged 18.1 points, 9.5 rebounds and 2.1 assists for Fort Wayne in his second G League season. He signed a 10-day contract with the Pacers on December 30 and played two total minutes in two games. Undrafted out of Houston in 2020, he appeared in 21 games with the Mavericks last season.

Pacers To Sign Duane Washington, Terry Taylor To Multiyear Contracts

The Pacers will promote both of their two-way players, Duane Washington and Terry Taylor, to the standard 15-man roster and sign them to new multiyear contracts, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN (Twitter link).

Indiana has a full 15-man roster and will need to make room for Washington and Terry. Justin Anderson‘s 10-day deal expires tonight, so he’ll likely be one casualty of the roster crunch. The other will be guard Keifer Sykes, who is being waived, according to Shams Charania of The Athletic (Twitter link).

Washington, 22, signed a two-way contract with the Pacers last August after going undrafted out of Ohio State. He has averaged 9.6 PPG, 1.8 RPG, and 1.8 APG in 46 NBA appearances (20.1 MPG), with a shooting line of .394/.366/.763.

Taylor initially signed an Exhibit 10 deal to join Indiana for training camp, then was waived in October before rejoining the team in December on a two-way contract. He has since made a strong impression on the franchise by putting up 9.6 PPG and 5.2 RPG with a .629 FG% in 31 games (21.3 MPG).

Obviously, the lottery-bound Pacers don’t need to worry about either Washington or Taylor being playoff-eligible, so their promotions are more about locking them up to team-friendly contracts rather than having them become free agents this offseason. The terms of the new deals are unclear, but they’re unlikely to be fully guaranteed or worth more than the minimum beyond this season.

Sykes, also a first-year player, was another Pacers camp invitee who was released in October before rejoining the team in December. The 28-year-old averaged 5.6 PPG and 1.9 APG on .363/.300/.882 shooting in 32 games (17.7 MPG). Sykes had been on a two-year contract, but his salary for 2022/23 wasn’t guaranteed, so Indiana won’t be on the hook for any money beyond this season.

After officially promoting Washington and Taylor, the Pacers will have a pair of open two-way slots that they could fill before the regular season ends on Sunday if they so choose.

Central Notes: Washington Jr., Caruso, Blaha, Pistons

Pacers two-way rookie Duane Washington Jr. received high praise from coach Rick Carlisle after scoring 19 points on Saturday, James Boyd of the Indianapolis Star writes. Washington helped Indiana defeat San Antonio 119-108, shooting 7-of-9 from the floor in 21 minutes of action off the bench.

“I had somebody at the table to sub for him,” Carlisle said of Washington. “He hit a 3, and the play kept going, and he hit another 3, and I sent Chris (Duarte) back (to the bench), and then he hit a third 3.

“Wash is an aggressive player that’s fearless and unselfish. He gives himself a chance to get going every night, and generally he does it in a way that’s within the team concept and is in the rhythm of the game.”

Washington signed with the Pacers after going undrafted last August. He’s averaging 9.1 points per game this season, shooting 39% from the floor and 37% from three-point range.

Here are some other notes from the Central Division:

  • The Bulls were sparked by Alex Caruso‘s return from a fractured right wrist on Saturday, Joe Cowley of the Chicago Sun-Times writes. Caruso finished with 11 points, four assists and four steals off the bench, helping his team defeat Cleveland 101-91 at home. “He had a major impact, just having another competitor out there,’’ teammate Ayo Dosunmu said of Caruso. “He makes [defense] easier for a lot of us. He’s a veteran; he’s won; he’s played in those high-level games. You have that, and it boosts the entire team morale.’’
  • Pistons legendary play-by-play commentator George Blaha will miss the rest of the season due to a heart bypass procedure that’ll take place on Tuesday, the team announced in a press release. Blaha is expected to make a full recovery. He has called more than 3,400 Pistons games since 1976.
  • Omari Sankofa II of The Detroit Free Press examines why winning should matter more than the lottery for the Pistons. Detroit, tied with Orlando for the second-worst record in the league at 18-50, is 5-5 in its last 10 games.