Ed Davis

Eastern Trade Rumors: Cavs, Schröder, Beal, Dinwiddie, Burks, Magic

Before acquiring Caris LeVert from Indiana, the Cavaliers talked to the Clippers about a possible deal involving Luke Kennard, according to reports from Michael Scotto of HoopsHype and Jake Fischer of Bleacher Report.

Meanwhile, Jared Weiss of The Athletic suggests the Cavaliers may not be done dealing yet, writing that they remain in the mix for Celtics guard Dennis Schröder. A Cleveland offer for Schröder would likely include a draft pick and two players from a group that includes Ed Davis, Dylan Windler, and Kevin Pangos, says Weiss.

Even as the Cavs remain in the market for more backcourt help, it doesn’t appear likely they’re prepared to move on from injured guard Collin Sexton. According to Scotto, teams have called to inquire on Sexton, who will be a restricted free agent this summer, but Cleveland would prefer to keep him.

Here are a few more trade rumors from around the Eastern Conference:

  • There’s still no indication the Wizards will do anything this week with Bradley Beal, who is getting his injured wrist evaluated, writes ESPN’s Brian Windhorst. The team still wants to keep him long-term and hasn’t heard anything from Beal that indicates he’s not committed to the franchise, sources tell ESPN.
  • The Wizards have, however, continued to communicate their interest in trading their other starting guard, Spencer Dinwiddie, says Fischer. According to Fischer, it’s unclear what sort of market exists for Dinwiddie, who is having a poor season in D.C.
  • As the Knicks continue their attempts to move a veteran or two, they’ve exhibited interest in acquiring players on expiring contracts, says Windhorst. Among the vets being shopped by New York, Alec Burks has generated the most interest, Fischer reports.
  • According to Fischer, league personnel think the Magic will end up trading Terrence Ross in a deal similar to the Evan Fournier move from a year ago, which netted them a pair of second-round picks. Fischer adds that Gary Harris is considered a buyout candidate if he’s not traded at the deadline.

Five More Players Receive Salary Guarantees

The Hawks are hanging onto forward Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot, guaranteeing his salary for the rest of the 2021/22 season, reports Michael Scotto of HoopsHype (Twitter link). The decision assures Luwawu-Cabarrot of his full $1,939,350 salary, which counts against Atlanta’s cap for $1,669,178.

After two seasons in Brooklyn, Luwawu-Cabarrot signed a one-year, minimum-salary deal with the Hawks in September. He has appeared in 24 games so far, averaging 4.5 PPG and 1.5 RPG on .387/.381/.813 shooting in 13.9 minutes per contest. He’ll be an unrestricted free agent in the summer of 2022.

Here are more updates on salary guarantees:

  • According to Scotto (via Twitter), Pacers forward Oshae Brissett has survived today’s salary guarantee deadline and is assured of receiving his $1,701,593 salary. Brissett has emerged as a three-and-D piece in Indiana’s rotation since joining the team last April, registering 8.2 PPG and 4.5 RPG with a .399 3PT% in 49 total games (20.7 MPG) across parts of two seasons. The club holds a $1.85MM option on him for next season.
  • The Cavaliers are retaining center Ed Davis and guaranteeing his salary, tweets Scotto. Davis isn’t playing much for Cleveland, logging just 112 total minutes across 12 games so far, but he’s considered a strong veteran presence in the locker room. His salary is $2,641,691, while his cap hit is $1,669,178.
  • The Bucks are guaranteeing Wesley Matthews‘ salary for 2021/22, tweets Eric Nehm of The Athletic. Milwaukee decided to move on from DeMarcus Cousins this week, but will hang onto Matthews, who signed a minimum-salary contract with the team last month. Matthews is on the books for a $1,237,494 cap hit and is earning a $1,958,495 salary.
  • Timberwolves wing Jaylen Nowell has received a rest-of-season guarantee, according to Dane Moore of Blue Wire Pods (Twitter link). Nowell, whose $1,782,621 salary and equivalent cap hit are now locked in, is averaging 7.5 PPG, 1.9 RPG, and 1.9 APG in 24 games (13.8 MPG) for Minnesota so far this season. The Wolves will have to make a decision this summer on his $1.93MM team option for 2022/23.

COVID-19 Updates: Wizards, Trail Blazers, Heat, Rockets, Sixers, I. Thomas, More

The league continues to be battered by players entering and exiting the health and safety protocols. If any of the players entering the protocols registered a confirmed positive COVID-19 test, they’ll remain sidelined for at least six days or until they can return two consecutive negative tests at least 24 hours apart.

Here are the latest updates from around the NBA:

Injury/COVID Notes: J. Green, P. Tucker, E. Davis, T. Brown

Rockets rookie Jalen Green is on track to play on Thursday in Indiana, reports Jonathan Feigen of The Houston Chronicle. Houston has a back-to-back road set on Wednesday and Thursday vs. the Bucks and Pacers, respectively, so the team is eyeing the second game in that back-to-back for Green’s return.

The No. 2 pick in the 2021 draft, Green has been sidelined for nearly a month due to a strained left hamstring, which he suffered on November 24. He averaged 14.0 PPG, 3.1 RPG, and 2.3 APG on .382/.378/.807 shooting in his first 18 NBA games (30.8 MPG) and will be looking to improve upon those numbers when he returns to the court.

Here are a few more updates from around the league related to injuries and COVID-19:

  • Bulls wing Troy Brown has exited the health and safety protocols and is rejoining the team, a source tells Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN (Twitter link). Chicago still has five players in the protocols.
  • The Cavaliers have placed veteran big man Ed Davis in the health and safety protocols, according to Wojnarowski (Twitter link). Cleveland is facing a significant COVID-19 outbreak, with eight players in the protocols, but should have enough players available to continue its schedule, says Wojnarowski.
  • An MRI on P.J. Tucker‘s left knee injury revealed no structural damage, says Anthony Chiang of The Miami Herald. The Heat have diagnosed Tucker’s injury as lower left leg nerve inflammation and ruled him out for Tuesday’s game vs. Indiana. It’s unclear how much more time he might miss.

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.