Ed Davis

Central Notes: Davis, Warren, Jackson, Lonzo

Veteran reserve center Ed Davis understands why a rebuilding Cavaliers team wants him on the roster, per Chris Fedor of the Cleveland Plain Dealer (Twitter link).

“I’m authentic with everything,” Davis said. “For these guys, I’m not in competition. I’m not trying to beat out (starting center Jarrett Allen) for his minutes or take the rookie (Evan Mobley)’s minutes. Anything that is coming from me is coming from an honest place. I know my role. I know why I’m here.”

The 32-year-old big man inked a non-guaranteed deal with the club last week. He averaged just 2.1 PPG and 5.0 RPG over 23 games as a back-up for the lottery-bound Timberwolves during the 2020/21 season.

There’s more out of the Central Division:

  • Pacers small forward T.J. Warren continues to recover from a stress fracture in the navicular bone in his left foot, per Scott Agness of Fieldhouse Files (via Twitter). Agness reports that Warren remains in a walking boot, and appears to still be weeks away from returning to practices with Indiana. Warren missed all but four games during the 2020/21 season with the injury. A valuable two-way contributor when healthy, the 28-year-old will reach free agency in 2022.
  • Pistons head coach Dwane Casey has indicated that wing Josh Jackson earned a spot in the club’s rotation, per Omari Sankofa II of the Detroit Free Press (Twitter link). “He’s definitely in the rotation the way he’s played and played with confidence, defending without fouling,” Casey said. “His growth has been fantastic.” Jackson, selected with the fourth pick in the 2017 draft out of Kansas, has bounced around during his NBA tenure so far.
  • New Bulls starting point guard Lonzo Ball will be looked on to help open up the floor as another high-level passer for a suddenly ball handler-heavy Chicago team, per K.C. Johnson of NBC Sports Chicago“Lonzo instinctively on made baskets does a really good job of getting high outlets,” raved head coach Billy Donovan. “There are times where the ball gets inbounded and he’s looping and there are guys already down the floor and we can do that. There’s a balance there for him.”

Cavs Notes: Davis, James, Rubio, Garland, Rotation

The Cavaliers‘ signing of Ed Davis on Wednesday came as a bit of a surprise, given the timing of the move and the fact that Cleveland already has a good amount of frontcourt depth. However, according to Chris Fedor of Cleveland.com, head coach J.B. Bickerstaff pushed for the addition of Davis, who is considered one of the NBA’s best locker-room presences and mentors.

Davis’ one-year, minimum-salary contract is non-guaranteed, per Fedor. However, the expectation is that the veteran center will be part of the Cavaliers’ 15-man roster to start the regular season.

Here’s more on the Cavs:

  • Justin James, who also signed with the Cavs on Wednesday, will likely play in the team’s preseason finale on Friday and will get a chance to earn one of the team’s open two-way slots, says Fedor. If James doesn’t get a two-way contract, he could still become an affiliate player for the Cleveland Charge.
  • In another story for Cleveland.com, Fedor takes an in-depth look at how the Cavaliers acquired Ricky Rubio early in the offseason and what role they expect him to play in 2021/22. Although Rubio won’t be part of the starting five, Bickerstaff will be counting on him for starter-type minutes, and one member of the organization told Fedor that he thinks the Spaniard will work his way into Cleveland’s closing five.
  • Fedor adds in the same story that Rubio has taken starting point guard Darius Garland “under his wing.” The two guards, whose lockers are next to each other, talk daily and watch film together, writes Fedor.
  • After indicating earlier this month that he planned on a 10-man rotation for the regular season, Bickerstaff now thinks the Cavs’ regular rotation could include just nine players, tweets Fedor. Bickerstaff believes the versatility of Evan Mobley and Lauri Markkanen, along with his desire to have Rubio play starter minutes, reduces the need for a 10th regular.

Cavaliers Sign Ed Davis, Justin James

The Cavaliers have announced a pair of signings, stating in a press release that they’ve added big man Ed Davis and guard Justin James to their roster. Cleveland now has a full 20-man squad.

Davis, 32, spent the 2020/21 season with the Timberwolves, playing a limited role in the team’s frontcourt. The center averaged 2.1 PPG and 5.0 RPG in 23 games (13.0 MPG).

Davis, an 11-year veteran who has 691 career regular season games under his belt, isn’t the kind of player who typically gets signed and quickly waived this week for G League purposes, so it will be interesting to see what the Cavs’ plan for him is. The team only has 11 players on fully guaranteed contracts, so there’s room for Davis to make the 15-man regular season roster.

As for James, he spent his first two NBA seasons with the Kings after being selected 40th overall in the 2019 draft out of Wyoming. He didn’t play a regular role for Sacramento, but appeared in 72 games across two seasons, averaging 3.2 PPG and 0.9 RPG with a shooting line of .446/.343/.544 in 7.5 minutes per contest.

The 24-year-old was waived by the Kings earlier this offseason, signed a two-way deal with Utah, and then was released by the Jazz as well. The Cavs may view him as a potential affiliate player for the Cleveland Charge.

Wolves Notes: Trade Deadline, Gordon, McDaniels, Collins, Power Forward

The Timberwolves allowed the trade deadline to pass without making a move, opting not to make a trade just for the sake of doing so, president of basketball operations Gersson Rosas said.

Minnesota was most heavily linked to forward Aaron Gordon, who was moved from Orlando to Denver on deadline day. The team has struggled with injuries and currently holds the league’s worst record at 10-34.

“You don’t make a trade for the sake of making a trade,” Rosas explained, as relayed by Chris Hine of the Star Tribune. “We haven’t seen this group together enough starting with our best two players and everybody else. That played a big part in it. We want to see what we have in order to make the best-educated decisions we can make.”

As a whole, an astounding 23 teams were involved in trades on deadline day this year, though Minnesota naturally wasn’t one of them.

Here are some other notes from Minnesota today:

  • A significant hurdle in the Wolves’ talks to acquire Gordon was the availability of rookie Jaden McDaniels, Hine writes. Minnesota and Orlando held discussions for multiple weeks, but Orlando reportedly wanted McDaniels in a potential agreement. Rosas and his team ultimately balked at the idea of parting ways with the 20-year-old.
  • Don’t expect the Wolves to stop monitoring Hawks big man John Collins in the coming months, Hine contends. Collins will be a restricted free agent this summer and received interest from Minnesota until the deadline passed. The 23-year-old has averaged 18.1 points, 7.8 rebounds and 30.6 minutes per game this season.
  • The power forward position remains an area of concern for the franchise, Hine relays. What remains to be seen, however, is whether the solution will come internally or externally. “The one thing we don’t want to do is plug a long-term hole with a short-term solution that’s not going to be there when we need it,” Rosas said. “So we’ll continue investing in and developing our young players to see if the answer is there. Jaden gives us a lot of excitement and a lot of optionality there, but it’s a need.”
  • A source tells Hine that the Timberwolves could have made trades involving Ed Davis and Ricky Rubio, but opted against it.

Scotto’s Latest: Lowry, Aldridge, Oladipo, Wolves

The Heat are among the teams that have reached out to the Raptors about veteran guard Kyle Lowry, league sources tell Michael Scotto of HoopsHype. Some of the players discussed in a possible deal include Goran Dragic, Kelly Olynyk and Kendrick Nunn, according to Scotto.

Lowry, who will turn 35 this month, continues to remain productive, averaging 18.0 points, 7.2 rebounds and 5.5 rebounds through 31 games. He recently pledged his loyalty to the franchise, but didn’t offer a guarantee that he will re-sign with Toronto when he becomes a free agent this summer.

As a one-year Bird player, Dragic has veto power over any trade, Scotto notes. If Dragic agrees to a deal and a new team declines his $19.44MM option for next season, his Bird rights will be reduced to Non-Bird when he enters free agency. Olynyk is headed for unrestricted free agency, while Nunn will be a restricted free agent if he receives a $4.7MM qualifying offer.

Scotto offers a few more tidbits in advance of the March 25 trade deadline:

  • The Heat have also talked to the Spurs about veteran big man LaMarcus Aldridge, who won’t play again until San Antonio can work out a deal. According to Scotto, Miami offered Avery Bradley, Maurice Harkless and Meyers Leonard to match salary and would be willing to include a minimum contract such as Chris Silva or KZ Okpala or possibly draft picks. The Spurs will have many suitors for Aldridge, and several league executives expect the Celtics to get involved with their $28.5MM trade exception, Scotto adds. Boston is about $19.9MM below the hard cap and would have to send at least $4.1MM in contracts to San Antonio in return.
  • Rockets guard Victor Oladipo may be the top player available before the deadline, a few executives tell Scotto. The Knicks and Heat are among the teams that are reportedly interested. Scotto adds that Christian Wood is the only player the rebuilding Rockets might consider untouchable.
  • Several teams have inquired about Timberwolves veterans Ed DavisRicky RubioJuan Hernangomez and Jake Layman. Minnesota would like to acquire a young forward such as the Hawks‘ John Collins or the Magic’s Aaron Gordon, Scotto notes, and has future first-rounders to offer starting in 2023.

Northwest Notes: Wolves, Campazzo, Hartenstein, McCollum

Following a 2-0 start, the Timberwolves have lost four straight games and are struggling to stay competitive without star center Karl-Anthony Towns available. As Chris Hine of The Star Tribune details, head coach Ryan Saunders attempted to jump-start the club on Sunday by shaking up his starting lineup, inserting Juan Hernangomez and Ed Davis in place of Ricky Rubio and Naz Reid.

According to Hine, the plan was to help Russell establish some pick-and-roll chemistry with Davis, his former teammate in Brooklyn, and to reduce Reid’s minutes against Nikola Jokic in the hopes of avoiding foul trouble.

Jarrett Culver, playing the three instead of the four in the new-look lineup, had his best game of the young season, and Davis led the team in rebounding, but the Timberwolves still lost by 15 points and Hernangomez’s early struggles continued. Still, Saunders said after the game that he saw some positive signs from the fifth-year power forward.

“I did think he had some good defensive possessions. I thought that helped us,” Saunders said of Hernangomez. “His size and length helped us a little bit even though we got beat on the glass, I thought he was able to get his hands on a few. He had some good looks, missed a couple that he’ll usually make around the basket. So for that reason, I see progress with Juancho as well.”

Here’s more from around the Northwest:

  • Former Real Madrid star Facundo Campazzo had looked relatively invisible in his first five NBA games, but he showed on Sunday why the Nuggets brought him over from Spain this offseason, writes Mike Singer of The Denver Post. “I thought this was the best version of Facundo Campazzo that you could imagine,” head coach Michael Malone said of the 29-year-old point guard, who had 15 points and three steals in Denver’s win over Minnesota.
  • Before he signed with the Nuggets as a free agent in November, Isaiah Hartenstein drew interest from the Trail Blazers, Cavaliers, Pelicans, and Wizards, league sources tell Singer in a separate Denver Post story.
  • Typically a slow starter, Trail Blazers guard CJ McCollum has been excellent so far in 2020/21, having averaged 28.0 PPG with a .431 3PT% in six games. Jason Quick of The Athletic takes a look at what has fueled the hot start for McCollum, who said he’s motivated by wanting to secure a postseason berth without having to take part in the play-in tournament again.

Knicks Trade Ed Davis To Wolves For Spellman, Evans, Pick

NOVEMBER 24: The Timberwolves have officially acquired Davis from the Knicks in exchange for Spellman, Evans, and a future draft pick, the team confirmed today in a press release. According to the Wolves, the pick going to the Knicks is Minnesota’s 2026 second-rounder.


NOVEMBER 22: The Knicks will trade big man Ed Davis to the Timberwolves for big man Omari Spellman, shooting guard Jacob Evans and the rights to a future second-round pick, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN (via Twitter).

Evans and Spellman, sent by the Warriors to Minnesota at the 2020 deadline as part of the D’Angelo RussellAndrew Wiggins deal, will earn a combined $4MM in 2020/21. Davis, meanwhile, is set to make $5MM this season.

Given the added money and the fact that the Timberwolves are surrendering a draft asset in the deal, it looks as if the Wolves like Davis and intend to retain him. At just 31 years old, the athletic journeyman could help spell sharpshooting star center Karl-Anthony Towns.

Davis had career-lows in minutes (10.8 MPG in just 28 games), points (1.8 PPG) and rebounds (3.8 RPG) during his 2019/20 season with the Jazz. Utah agreed to send him to New York earlier this week in a salary-dump deal.

Considering that the Knicks acquired two 2023 second-round draft picks for taking on Davis’ salary originally, it is impressive that the club has now added a third second-round draft pick in moving off his salary.

With these new additions, the Knicks now have 16 players on their roster, aside from their two-way players. Marc Berman of the New York Post has said the Knicks like Spellman, but it’s not clear whether or not Evans will be retained.

Luke Adams contributed to this report.

Wolves Notes: Rubio, Edwards, Davis, Beasley

In a conversation with Jon Krawczynski of The Athletic, Ricky Rubio discussed his first stint with the Timberwolves, his impending second stint with the franchise, and the experience of being traded twice in the span of days. Rubio said he found out about his involvement in the SunsChris Paul trade last week when Shams Charania broke the news on Twitter.

“It’s not the way you want to know, especially my agent was talking with the team and they said my name was off the table when all the rumors and all the stuff happened,” Rubio said. “You feel like everything that they have said to you all year and buying into a new project and a young team and they need you, blah, blah, blah. It seems like nothing’s true.”

As Krawczynski writes, Rubio wasn’t upset about the move itself, since he understands why the Suns would want Paul. Still, he was stung by the way he found out. Now, after initially making his NBA debut for the Timberwolves as a 21-year-old, the point guard is looking forward to returning to the team as a veteran who can help guide a young squad.

“It started to really make more sense for me to really connect the puzzle and get to Minnesota and help a young team with a lot of talent and already have done really good things,” he told Krawczynsi. “I feel like I can fit in the puzzle.”

Here’s more on the Wolevs:

  • In an in-depth story on how the Timberwolves decided to use the No. 1 pick in this year’s draft on Anthony Edwards, Krawczynski cites sources who say that the team never really got close to trading that pick. The Wolves were unwilling to accept what they considered subpar value to move down and risk missing out on the Georgia guard, per Krawczynski. “He stood head and shoulders above any player in this draft and we were excited to be at No. 1 to be able to select him,” president of basketball operations Gersson Rosas said of Edwards.
  • Michael Rand of The Star Tribune makes a case for why he believes veteran center Ed Davis could be the Timberwolves’ most important new player for the 2020/21 season.
  • Three days after agreeing to a new $60MM deal with the Timberwolves, Malik Beasley made a court appearance today. Beasley, who faces a pair of felony charges related to a September incident, was told to have no contact with the alleged victims and a potential witness, tweets Krawczynski. His next court appearance will be on December 17.

Jazz Trade Ed Davis To Knicks

NOVEMBER 23: The Jazz have issued a press release officially confirming that they’ve sent Davis and two future second-rounders to New York in exchange for cash considerations.

Now that the move is official, it clears the path for the Knicks to flip Davis to Minnesota in an agreed-upon deal with the Timberwolves.


NOVEMBER 19: The Jazz have reached an agreement to trade veteran big man Ed Davis to the Knicks, league sources tell Tony Jones of The Athletic (Twitter link). New York will also receive a pair of 2023 second-round pick in the deal, per Adrian Wojnarowski and Brian Windhorst of ESPN (Twitter link).

Davis, who signed a two-year, $9.8MM deal with the Jazz a year ago, didn’t end up being relied upon as a regular part of the club’s rotation. He appeared in just 28 contests, logging 10.8 MPG and establishing new career lows in PPG (1.8) and RPG (3.8).

Davis is owed a guaranteed $5MM salary for the 2020/21 season, so this is essentially a salary dump for the Jazz, who are hoping to re-sign Jordan Clarkson and maintain enough cap flexibility to utilize their full $9.3MM mid-level exception. The Knicks will have upwards of $40MM in cap room in free agency, so they’ll have no problem taking on Davis’ contract.

After acquiring the Pistons’ 2023 second-round in last night’s draft, the Knicks will pick up two more second-rounders for that draft in this swap. It seems the team’s focus on ’23 is no accident — Marc Berman of The New York Post suggested earlier today (via Twitter) that the Knicks “really love” the 2023 draft, which they believe will be the first without the one-and-done rule in place, allowing high-schoolers to enter.

Ed Davis To Miss Utah’s First-Round Series

Jazz big man Ed Davis will miss the team’s first-round series with a left knee MCL injury, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski (Twitter link).

Davis is expected to be re-evaluated in a few weeks, Wojnarowski adds. Utah is set to open the playoffs against Denver on Tuesday, with the team already missing Mike Conley due to the birth of his child. Conley is expected to miss at least two games of action and could sit more.

Davis, 31, has appeared in just 28 games with the Jazz this season, averaging 1.8 points, 3.8 rebounds and 10.8 minutes per contest. Davis had success during the 2018/19 campaign with Brooklyn, holding per-game averages of 5.8 PPG and 8.6 RPG in 81 total contests. He originally signed with the Jazz in July of 2019.

As for the Nuggets, the team is set to play Game 1 without the likes of Gary Harris (right hip muscle strain), Will Barton (right knee soreness) and Vlatko Cancar (left foot fracture).