Earl Clark

International Notes: James, Koufos, Kaba, Delaney, Clark

EuroLeague powerhouse CSKA Moscow has agreed to a two-year contract extension with former NBA guard Mike James, according to a report from Russian outlet Izvestia (hat tip to Sportando). James enjoyed a brief NBA stint in 2017/18 when he appeared in 36 games for Phoenix and New Orleans, but has otherwise spent his professional career overseas, playing for teams in Greece and Italy before joining CSKA.

Meanwhile, the same Izvestia report also indicates that CSKA Moscow isn’t expected to exercise its second-year option on veteran center Kosta Koufos, who signed a one-plus-one deal with the team in 2019. Koufos spent over a decade in the NBA, playing in 686 games from 2008-19, but it’s not clear if the 31-year-old would draw any stateside interest if and when he becomes a free agent.

Here are a few more NBA-adjacent updates on international basketball leagues:

  • Alpha Kaba, whose NBA rights are held by the Hawks, is joining French team Nanterre 92, according to a report from BeBasket (French link). A 24-year-old forward/center, Kaba was selected by Atlanta with the No. 60 pick in the 2017 draft, but has continued to play in France since then.
  • Spanish team FC Barcelona has parted ways with veteran guard Malcolm Delaney, per a team press release (h/t to Sportando). A standout EuroLeague contributor who spent two seasons with the Hawks from 2016-18, Delanyed is in talks with Italian club Olimpia Milano and has drawn interest from Olympiacos in Greece, reports Emiliano Carchia of Sportando.
  • Veteran forward Earl Clark, who appeared in 261 NBA games from 2009-15, has parted ways with Spanish team San Pablo Burgos, according to the club (h/t to Sportando). Clark has spent time in China, Turkey, Montenegro, Spain, and the G League since last playing in the NBA.

Earl Clark Will Play In Turkey

NBA veteran Earl Clark, who was cut by the Nets last year, will play in Turkey next season, according to Orazio Cauchi of Sportando. Clark, who played in the D-League and China in 2015/16, will sign a deal with the Besiktas franchise.

Clark last played for Brooklyn at the end of the 2014/15 season, averaging 2.7 points and 2.3 rebounds in 10 games. The Nets signed the 6’10” power forward in late March of 2015, but released him during the offseason. He was part of a D-League trade in January, going from the Suns‘ Bakersfield affiliate to the Sixers‘ Delaware affiliate.

The 28-year-old had a journeyman NBA career after the Suns made him a lottery pick out of Louisville in 2009. He also played for the Magic, Lakers, Cavaliers and Knicks during his six years in the league. Clark’s best season was with L.A. in 2012/13, when he averaged 7.3 points per night in 59 games.

And Ones: Papanikolaou, Clark, Inglis, RFAs

Kostas Papanikolaou, whom the Nuggets waived last week, will return to Olympiacos in Greece, according to Sport24 (translation via Emiliano Carchia of Sportando). Papanikolaou, who won two Euroleague titles during his last stint with Olympiacos, will sign a contract that runs through June 2019. He was released twice this season by Denver, most recently on January 8th, just before the remainder of his veteran’s minimum salary of $845,059 would have been guaranteed for the season. Papanikolaou also played for the Rockets during his season and a half in the NBA, averaging 3.6 points in 69 games with the two franchises. The 6’8″ forward was sent to Denver in the July 20th trade that brought Ty Lawson to Houston.

There’s more from around the basketball world:

  • Former lottery pick Earl Clark, who is playing in the D-League while hoping to earn a 10-day contract, was part of a trade Saturday, writes Paul Coro of The Arizona Republic. Clark was sent from the Suns‘ Bakersfield affiliate to the Sixers‘ Delaware affiliate in exchange for a second-round D-League draft pick. The 27-year-old, who played 10 games with the Nets last season, hopes the move will give him a fresh start in his quest to return to the NBA. “It’s a grind,” Clark said of the D-League. “It’s definitely different from any other league. I just felt like [the NBA] was within my reach if I came down here and played well. I believe in my talent. I told myself I’m going to give myself another year to make this NBA thing work.”
  • The Bucks have sent Damien Inglis to the D-League, the team announced Saturday. Because Milwaukee doesn’t have a direct affiliate, Inglis will be assigned to the Westchester Knicks. He played for the Canton Charge during an earlier trip to the D-League.
  • Chasing restricted free agents is a risky way to pursue talent, according to Eric Pincus of Basketball Insiders. The danger is that while teams wait for other organizations to decide whether to match an offer, top talent could be signing elsewhere. Prominent RFAs this summer will include Andre Drummond, Harrison BarnesBradley BealFestus Ezeli, Allen Crabbe and Evan Fournier.

Eastern Notes: Embiid, D-League, Bulls

Sixers GM Sam Hinkie noted that while Joel Embiid adhered to the prescribed recovery plan for his injured right foot, the team would have liked the center to be more focused at times regarding his rehab, Tom Moore of Calkins Media writes. “He [Embiid] gets thrown into the NBA and the thing you love the most is taken away from you,” Hinkie said. “I found his diligence to be good. At the same time, I’ve had conversations with him that everybody’s got to step up their focus. The stakes are very high. It’s clear to everyone however high they were, they’re higher [now].” Embiid underwent a second surgical procedure on his injured right foot this week, and he is expected to miss the entire 2015/16 campaign.

Here’s more out of the Eastern Conference:

  • The Raptors have secured the D-League rights to several players via the expansion draft, and a number of recognizable names are up and down the list, Michael Grange of Sportsnet.ca notes (on Twitter). Some of the better known players selected by the team include Earl Clark, Nolan Smith, Dee Bost, Dahntay Jones, and Ricky Ledo, Grange relays.
  • The Bulls chose to stand pat for the most part this offseason regarding making roster moves, with the team still believing that its core has the capability of reaching the NBA Finals, a plan that center Joakim Noah agrees with, Vincent Goodwill of CSNChicago.com writes. “I think continuity is gonna be great for us,” Noah told Goodwill. “Even though it’s the same group, it’s still gonna be change at the leadership role as far as coaching. So it’s gonna be very different. So having the same team brings stability as well.
  • Lamar Patterson, who inked a two-year pact with the Hawks this offseason, hopes that shedding 22 pounds of weight from his 6’5″ frame will help him earn a regular season roster spot, Jake Fischer of SI.com writes. The guard spent last season with Tofas Bursa of Turkey, averaging 11.2 points and 3.6 rebounds in 28.3 minutes per game. Patterson, who turns 24 next month, led the Hawks in scoring at the Las Vegas Summer League with 13.1 PPG to go along with 5.1 RPG in 25.8 MPG.

Nets Waive Earl Clark

AUGUST 10TH, 4:02pm: The move has indeed taken place, the team announced via press release.

AUGUST 3RD, 8:07pm: The Nets will waive forward Earl Clark this week so that he can pursue a deal elsewhere, league sources told RealGM’s Shams Charania (Twitter link). Mike Mazzeo of ESPN.com confirms the impending transaction and notes that the Nets will be down to 16 players under contract for the upcoming season (Twitter links).

Clark epitomizes the journeyman label, having played for six teams since entering the league in 2009/10. The 6’10” Clark appeared in 10 games with the Nets last season, averaging 2.7 points and 2.3 rebounds in 9.3 minutes. 

Back in June, Alex Kennedy of Basketball Insiders reported that the 27-year-old wanted to stay with Brooklyn but his non-guaranteed salary made him expendable (Twitter links). Clark was scheduled to earn $1,185,784.

Atlantic Notes: Clark, Cauley-Stein, Erman

Earl Clark‘s future with the Nets still remains unclear even after the forward spoke with GM Billy King, Alex Kennedy of Basketball Insiders relays (Twitter links). The 27-year-old wishes to remain with Brooklyn, but realizes his non-guaranteed salary for next season could make him expendable, Kennedy notes. Clark, who is scheduled to earn $1,185,784 during the 2015/16 campaign, indicated he would likely play in an NBA summer league if he is let go by the Nets, the Basketball Insiders scribe adds.

Here’s more from the Atlantic Division:

  • NBA commissioner Adam Silver told reporters, including Rod Boone of Newsday (on Twitter), that he has talked to Nets owner Mikhail Prokhorov about how to drum up more interest in the NBA over in Russia.
  • Kentucky big man Willie Cauley-Stein has a workout scheduled with the Knicks on June 16th, Adam Zagoria of SNY.tv tweets.
  • Celtics assistant coach Darren Erman departed for a post on Alvin Gentry‘s coaching staff in New Orleans because the Pelicans offered him a spot as a member of the bench staff, something Boston could not, Mark Murphy of The Boston Herald writes. “We heard rumors about the connections Erman had made in Golden State, where Alvin is now, though Alvin wasn’t in Golden State with Erman,” Celtics executive Danny Ainge said. “The people at Golden State, including a few of the players, were encouraging Alvin that if he got the job, Erman was the guy he needed to hire. . . . We didn’t want to lose him. We just didn’t have a spot on the bench for him here.”

Zach Links contributed to this post.

Atlantic Notes: Randolph, Brown, Clark

It would make sense for the Nuggets to claim Shavlik Randolph off waivers today from the Celtics, as Marc Stein of ESPN.com points out (Twitter links). Denver is nearly $1.864MM shy of the salary floor, but claiming Randolph’s $1,227,985 minimum salary would close the majority of that gap. The entire amount of Randolph’s salary would count toward Denver’s team salary as far as the floor is concerned, but the Nuggets would only be on the hook for the last prorated bit of actual pay Randolph is to receive this season. The Nuggets would otherwise have to distribute the entire shortfall beneath the salary floor among their existing players. A waiver claim of Randolph would absolve the C’s from paying the remainder of his salary and take his entire cap figure off their books, though the effect would be negligible compared to what such a move would do for Denver.

It’s unclear if the Nuggets indeed plan on making a claim, so while we wait to see how that turns out, here’s more from the Atlantic Division:

  • Brett Brown wasn’t fully supportive of the deadline trade that sent out Michael Carter-Williams, writes Sean Deveney of The Sporting News, echoing what Carter-Williams said shortly after the deal. Still, the only tension between the coach and the Sixers front office is minimal, Deveney hears.
  • Sixers GM Sam Hinkie signaled to Tom Moore of Calkins Media that he has no plans to make significant free agent signings in the offseason (Twitter link). The team hasn’t signed a player to a contract with a total value of as much as $4.5MM in either of the last two summers, as our free agent trackers from 2013 and 2014 show.
  • Nets signee Earl Clark will have a $200K partial guarantee on his minimum salary for next season if he remains under contract through October 26th, as Eric Pincus of Basketball Insiders tweets and shows on his Nets salary page.

Atlantic Notes: Amundson, Clark, Celtics

Louis Amundson plans to play in Europe if the Knicks do not re-sign him, Marc Berman of the New York Post reports. The 32-year-old power forward, who becomes an unrestricted free agent this summer, has played on 10 NBA teams and doesn’t want to look for another if New York declines to make him an offer, Berman continues. “I would like to play. I’ve been in this league, so I know what that’s like,” Amundson told Berman. “So, I think going overseas would be a new experience for me I think I’d enjoy. I’d get an opportunity to play. So yeah, everything’s on the table.’’  Knicks GM Steve Mills told season ticket holders last week that the team was interested in bringing Amundson back, Berman adds.

In other news around the Atlantic Division:

  • The Knicks should also consider offering Andrea Bargnani a veteran’s minimum contract, Ian Begley of ESPNNewYork.com opines. While Bargnani has generally been a disappointment in his two years with the Knicks, his play since the All-Star break has made coach Derek Fisher take notice, Begley adds. Bargnani becomes an unrestricted free agent after the season and the club has indicated it would consider making a minimum-salary offer to him. “I think the way he’s finishing this season is not only showing us, but also showing other teams as well, that he’s a very capable player still at this point in his career,” Fisher said to New York reporters. “I think he’s trying to prove that to everyone, including us.”
  • Earl Clark’s new contract with the Nets is non-guaranteed for next year, with a partial guarantee if he makes the opening-day roster, a source told Devin Kharpertian of The Brooklyn Game (Twitter link), The team announced on Monday that it had reached a two-year agreement with the 27-year-old forward. Clark has appeared in six of the team’s last seven games, including Monday night’s victory over Portland.
  • The Celtics, who made several trades this season with an eye toward the future, are now scoreboard watching as they fight for a playoff spot, Chris Forsberg of ESPNBoston.com reports. Boston controls its playoff destiny and the players want to experience the postseason, Forsberg adds. “Even when we’re playing, I’m trying to look at the [out-of-town] scores throughout our game,”  Isaiah Thomas said to Boston beat reporters. “And then, after the games, I’m looking at the standings. It’s fun, but it’s hectic a little bit.”

Nets Sign Earl Clark To Two-Year Deal

9:32am: The signing is official, the team announced via press release.

MONDAY, 7:54am: Clark’s salary for next season is non-guaranteed, a league source tells NetsDaily (Twitter link). It’s a minimum-salary deal, since that’s all the Nets can hand out.

7:19pm: The Nets and Earl Clark have reached an agreement on a two-year deal, with a team option for 2015/16, Shams Charania of RealGM tweets citing league sources.

SUNDAY, 5:56pm: The Nets will likely re-sign combo forward Earl Clark after his 10-day contract with the team expires today, Tim Bontemps of the New York Post tweets. Clark has played in five of the Nets’ six games since the team signed him on March 27th. His best game was Saturday against the Hawks when he scored 11 points and grabbed seven rebounds. With guard Alan Anderson battling an ankle injury, Clark provides decent insurance off the bench.

The 27-year-old had been a free agent following a stint with China’s Shandong Lions before inking the prior 10-day deal with Brooklyn. The five-year veteran has seemingly seized the opportunity with the Nets after struggling to find work in the NBA this season. Clark had so much trouble that he told Rod Boone of Newsday he was surprised he landed with the Nets.

The Grizzlies cut ties with him after they signed him to a non-guaranteed contract for training camp. He was later grabbed off waivers in late October by the Rockets, only to be released by the team just a few days later. He played in six games for Houston’s D-League affiliate this year and averaged 26.2 points and 8.0 rebounds in 34.3 minutes. Clark bounced to China in mid-December and produced 26.4 PPG and 10.3 RPG in 32.6 MPG for Shandong.

His last NBA action before joining the Nets came last season with the Knicks after he signed a pair of 10-day contracts. His best season was the 2012/13 campaign with the Lakers when he scored 7.3 PPG in 23.1 MPG. That season netted him a two-year, $8.5MM deal with the Cavs, who traded him midway through the first year of that contract to the Sixers, who quickly waived him right after.

Atlantic Notes: Embiid, Celtics, Clark

Sixers draftee Joel Embiid‘s weight is finally getting down into the range that the team is comfortable with, which pleases coach Brett Brown, Keith Pompey of The Philadelphia Inquirer writes. “He’s ticking boxes in regards to increased time on the court and reduced weight,” Brown said of the rookie center. “His weight is going down. His needle is clearly pointing in the right direction. And you heard me say this a lot lately, he’s setting the stage for a great summer. He sees his reward will be summer league, trying to get ready to actually play again.”

Here’s more from the Atlantic Division:

  • Chris Herring of The Wall Street Journal takes a look at how Kentucky junior Willie Cauley-Stein would fit with the Knicks. Herring posits that New York could look to select the big man if they fall out of the top three picks in the draft lottery.
  • Celtics team president Danny Ainge believes that he’ll learn a lot about the makeup of his players whether or not Boston secures a playoff spot this season, Jimmy Toscano of CSNNE.com writes. “I’m not really hanging on [making the playoffs]. I think it’s a great opportunity for me to evaluate and Brad [Stevens] to evaluate what we’re made of, who can step it up, players that can play meaningful minutes,” Ainge said. “And our young guys can learn through this, you don’t judge them from one game to the next, but see how our guys react and bounce back from difficult losses and bad performances. So far our guys have passed the test. So I’m excited about the next ten games, like you said. We do control our own destiny. We have a tough schedule ahead of us still and I’m excited about that.
  • Earl Clark, who inked a 10-day deal with the Nets today, says that he’s surprised to be with the team, Rod Boone of Newsday tweets. Clark says that he was at home working out when his agent called and told him to pack for Brooklyn, Boone adds.