Elijah Millsap

USA Basketball Announces Roster For First World Cup Qualifiers

USA Basketball has announced its 12-man roster for the first round of the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019 Americas Qualifiers, bringing back four members of the squad that won gold earlier this year in FIBA’s AmeriCup tournament.

Here’s Team USA’s full 12-man roster:

The squad, which will be coached once again by Jeff Van Gundy, is comprised almost entirely of G League players, since most of the qualifying tournaments take place during the NBA season, preventing NBA players from participating. Team USA’s goal is for Van Gundy’s squad of G Leaguers to qualify for the 2019 World Cup, which will take place in August and September, when NBA players will be free to participate.

The new-look USA Basketball program is off to a good start, having gone 5-0 this summer to win a gold medal at the AmeriCup tournament. Drew, Hearn, Munford, and Warney were all part of that team.

This time around, Team USA will face Puerto Rico on November 23 and then Mexico on November 26. After those contests, the first round of World Cup qualifiers will resume in February before concluding in July. The top three teams in each first-round group will advance to the second round, which begins in September 2018 and concludes in February 2019, so the qualifying process will take some time to play out.

Meanwhile, the G League teams temporarily losing players to Team USA will be permitted one free move per lost player from the available player pool, tweets Adam Johnson of 2 Ways & 10 Days.

And-Ones: E. Millsap, Koenig, Eddie, Jeanne

Former NBA guard Elijah Millsap has signed with the Iowa Wolves of the G League, tweets Chris Reichert of 2 Ways and 10 Days. The 30-year-old played two games for the Suns last season after joining the team just before the season ended, but spent most of the year in the G League. He came to training camp with Phoenix, but was waived last month.

Millsap went undrafted out of Alabama-Birmingham in 2011 and played internationally and in the G League before getting an opportunity with Utah in the middle of the 2014/15 season. He spent a year and a half with the Jazz, averaging 4.2 points in 67 games.

There’s more news from the NBA, the G League and overseas:

  • Bronson Koenig, who was waived by the Bucks and Bulls during preseason, was involved in a G League trade today, according to Nicola Lupo of Sportando. The Windy City Bulls, Chicago’s affiliate, sent Koenig to the Grand Rapids Drive, Detroit’s affiliate, in exchange for the returning rights of Gary Talton, who is playing in Lithuania. Koenig, who was among the first players to sign a two-way contract, is a rookie guard out of Wisconsin.
  • Jarell Eddie, who was also with Chicago during preseason, has re-signed with Windy City, Lupo relays in a separate item. Eddie spent most of last season with the G League squad before inking a pair of 10-day contracts with the Suns in March. The 26-year-old small forward appeared in five games with Phoenix and played 26 games for the Wizards the previous year.
  • Restricted free agents could be facing another tough market in 2018, writes Sean Deveney of The Sporting News. With their teams holding the right to match any offer, restricted free agents have historically enjoyed little bargaining power, and the small number of teams with significant cap room next summer will make their situation even worse. Deveney identifies Magic forward Aaron Gordon and Rockets center Clint Capela as two players who might cash in, but says most will struggle to find offers.
  • French center Jonathan Jeanne, who was considered a draft prospect this year before being diagnosed with Marfan syndrome, may have reached the end of his career, reports Orazio Cauchi of Sportando. His French team, Le Mans Sarthe, has declared Jeanne “unfit to practice professional sports” after discussing his condition with specialists. The disorder affects the body’s connective tissue.

G League Notes: Bolomboy, E. Millsap, Tavares

The 2017 NBA G League draft will take place on Saturday, and former Jazz forward Joel Bolomboy is expected to be the first overall pick, a source tells Dakota Schmidt of Ridiculous Upside (Twitter link).

Phoenix’s G League affiliate, the Northern Arizona Suns, made a trade earlier today with the Iowa Wolves that saw the Suns acquire the No. 1 overall pick in exchange for the returning rights to Elijah Millsap, among other pieces. However, Schmidt suggests (via Twitter) that it wouldn’t be a surprise to see that first overall pick change hands again in the next 24 hours.

Here are a few more G League notes and updates, with a focus on more former NBA players like Bolomboy and Millsap:

  • Edy Tavares, whose returning rights are held by the Raptors 905, is headed back to the G League after being waived by Cleveland, according to a report from Gigantes (English link via Sportando).
  • The Rockets‘ G League affiliate, the Rio Grande Valley Vipers, sent a first-round pick to the Long Island Nets in exchange for R.J. Hunter‘s returning rights. Hunter, a former first-round pick, intends to suit up for the Vipers, his agent confirms to Adam Johnson of 2 Ways & 10 Days (Twitter link).
  • The Long Island Nets acquired the returning rights to Okaro White and Jamaal Franklin in a trade with the Memphis Hustle, according to a press release. White is still on the Heat‘s NBA roster and recently had his 2017/18 salary guaranteed, so Brooklyn’s affiliate seems unlikely to get its hands on him this season.
  • The Texas Legends, the affiliate of the Mavericks, has acquired Will Bynum‘s returning rights, suggesting the veteran guard could join the organization for the G League season, tweets Eddie Sefko of The Dallas Morning News.
  • Cliff Alexander, who was in camp with New Orleans earlier this month, had his returning rights traded to the Wisconsin Herd, the Bucks‘ G League affiliate, per a team release. “Cliff is a highly-skilled big man who is among the best in the league at his position,” Herd GM Dave Dean said in a statement. “He has a tremendous upside and we are excited to add him to the Wisconsin Herd family.”

Suns Waive Tidjan Keita, Elijah Millsap

2:45pm: In addition to cutting Keita, the Suns have also waived swingman Elijah Millsap, tweets Scott Bordow of The Arizona Republic. Having dropped Millsap’s non-guaranteed deal, Phoenix is now ready for the regular season, with 15 NBA players and two on two-way contracts.

1:54pm: The Suns have waived French forward/center Tidjan Keita, according to the team website. Keita just signed on Friday, so the organization seems to have plans for him in the G League.

The 20-year-old got an invitation to camp based on a pre-draft workout with the team in May and an impressive showing with Toronto’s entry in the Las Vegas Summer League.

The move brings the Phoenix roster down to 18 players, including two-way deals for Alec Peters and Mike James. One more move will be necessary to reach the limit.

Suns Sign Elijah Millsap To Multiyear Deal

1:55 PM: Phoenix will sign Millsap to a multiyear contract, according to the team’s website.

12:52 PM: The Suns will sign Elijah Millsap for the rest of the season, tweets Shams Charania of The Vertical.

The 28-year-old shooting guard spent this season with the Northern Arizona Suns in the D-League, averaging 19.8 points per night in 50 games. He has previous NBA experience with the Jazz, spending parts of the 2014/15 and 2015/16 seasons in Utah. Millsap, the younger brother of the Hawks’ Paul Millsap, played in Israel and the Philippines after being waived in January of 2016.

The Suns have been carrying an open roster spot since the trade deadline, so they won’t have to make a corresponding move to add Millsap.

D-League Notes: New Rules, Henry, Obekpa

The D-League is a prime venue for the NBA to test out the viability and effectiveness of new rules and procedures. The league announced a number of experimental rule changes that will be in place when the 2016/17 D-League campaign kicks off (h/t to Jeff Zillgitt of USA Today). We listed those below, along with some other news regarding the D-League:

  • Each team will be entitled to a “Reset Timeout” in the final two minutes of the fourth quarter and final two minutes of any overtime period. “Reset Timeouts” do not allow teams to huddle, but otherwise mirror standard timeouts, allowing teams to advance the ball (when applicable) and make unlimited substitutions. If either team huddles or prevents the ball from immediately being put back into play, it will result in a delay of game being issued to the offending team. The “Reset Timeout” replaces the “Advance Rule” which has been in use in the D-League the past two seasons.
  • A 75-second limit on the duration of instant replay reviews has been implemented, except in circumstances where the review is for a hostile act or altercation, could lead to an ejection, there is a technical equipment problem or other atypical circumstances.
  • The 24-second clock will reset to 14 seconds after an offensive rebound or when the offensive team is the first team to retain possession after the ball contacts the rim.
  • Xavier Henry, who was waived by the Bucks in September, has signed a contract with the Santa Cruz Warriors as a returning player, Adam Johnson of D-League Digest tweets.
  • Undrafted free agent Chris Obekpa will join Santa Cruz as an affiliate player for the Warriors, Johnson relays (on Twitter).
  • Shooting guard Elijah Millsap, who spent time last season overseas with the Israeli club Maccabi Tel Aviv, has signed a D-League contract with the Northern Arizona Suns, Johnson tweets.
  • Perry Ellis, who was waived by the Hornets on Saturday, is joining Charlotte’s D-League affiliate, Johnson relays (via Twitter).

Pelicans Get 16th Roster Spot, Eye Guards

1:42pm: The Pelicans are expected to use the roster spot on a guard, just as they did in December, the last time they had a hardship exception, Kushner writes. They signed Jimmer Fredette then, as Kushner points out. Fredette is once more a free agent following the expiration of his 10-day contract with the Knicks.

1:16pm: The NBA has given the Pelicans a 16th roster spot via hardship to offset their injuries, sources tell Scott Kushner of The New Orleans Advocate (Twitter link). The team has two days from the time the league formally grants the provision to use it. The roster spot lasts 10 days, though the team can apply to renew it.

It appears the latest injury to Eric Gordon triggered the hardship. Gordon is reportedly having surgery today after breaking his right ring finger for the second time in less than two months, and the Pelicans fear the soon-to-be free agent will miss the rest of the season. Tyreke Evans, Quincy Pondexter and Bryce Dejean-Jones have already suffered seasonending injuries. The hardship comes into play when at least four players are likely to miss two or more weeks, and with Gordon under the knife, that appears to be the case for New Orleans.

Injuries have ravaged the Pelicans throughout the season, capsizing what appeared to be a team on the rise, and Coach Alvin Gentry this past weekend acknowledged the need to shift the focus to the long-term future rather than an 11th-hour bid for a playoff spot. Thus, with six and a half games separating them from a playoff spot, the Pelicans seem more likely to go after players with upside than older veterans. Shams Charania of The Vertical on Yahoo Sports linked the team to Orlando Johnson and Elijah Millsap in a January report that also mentioned Dejean-Jones, who eventually joined the team. Millsap just reached a buyout agreement with Israel’s Maccabi Tel Aviv, sources told Sportando’s Orazio Cauchi (Twitter link),

Elijah Millsap Signs With Maccabi Tel Aviv

SATURDAY, 2:45pm: The signing is official, the team announced (h/t Sportando).

THURSDAY, 10:17pm: Free agent shooting guard Elijah Millsap is close to signing with the Israeli club Maccabi Tel Aviv, Michael Scotto of Sheridan Hoops reports (via Twitter) and Adam Johnson of D-League Digest confirms (on Twitter). The sides have reached agreement, as international journalist David Pick clarifies (Twitter link). The arrangement will cover the rest of the season and won’t include any NBA escape clause, Pick tells Hoops Rumors. Millsap drew mention as a possible 10-day contract candidate for the Pelicans, who signed Bryce Dejean-Jones earlier today.

Millsap was waived earlier this month by the Jazz, who cut him rather than guaranteeing his minimum salary contract for the remainder of the season. The 28-year-old brother of Hawks combo forward Paul Millsap had seen his minutes decrease this season to 8.6 per contest in 20 appearances after averaging 19.7 minutes a night in 47 games with Utah last year. His career stats are 4.2 points, 2.8 rebounds and 1.1 assists to accompany a shooting line of .332/.284/.683.

The 28-year-old client of Brendrick DeAngelo Simmons and Daniel Hazan has been to training camp with the Lakers, Thunder and Bucks since going undrafted out of UAB in 2010, and he spoke with Zach Links of Hoops Rumors in September 2014 about his journey to the NBA.

Pelicans Eye Millsap, Johnson, Dejean-Jones

The Pelicans are expected to consider several wing players for 10-day contracts now that Quincy Pondexter is set to miss the entire season, reports Shams Charania of Yahoo Sports, who mentions free agents Elijah Millsap, Orlando Johnson and Bryce Dejean-Jones by name. New Orleans has been carrying an open roster spot since trading Ish Smith to the Sixers last month.

Millsap cleared waivers last week from the Jazz, who cut him rather than guarantee his contract for the rest of the season. The 28-year-old brother of Paul Millsap had seen his minutes dwindle this season, to 8.6 per contest in 20 appearances, after he averaged 19.7 minutes a night in 47 games with Utah last year.

Johnson, who was the 36th overall pick in 2012, has been playing for the D-League affiliate of the Spurs for the past month, averaging 15.5 points in 32.3 minutes per game, with sizzling 50.7% shooting on 73 attempts from 3-point range. The 26-year-old last appeared in the NBA during the 2013/14 season with the Pacers and Kings.

Dejean-Jones signed with the Pelicans in August as an undrafted free agent after winning a spot on the New Orleans summer league team. He averaged 8.8 points in 18.2 minutes per game during the preseason, but a rash of injuries at other positions helped persuade the Pelicans to cut him before opening night. He’s since joined the Jazz affiliate in the D-League and has posted 18.5 points in 31.5 minutes per contest across six appearances.

Which player makes the most sense for the Pelicans, or is there another name they should consider? Share your thoughts with a comment.

Jazz Release Elijah Millsap

2:11pm: The move is official, the team announced.

2:06pm: The Jazz have told Elijah Millsap that they’re waiving him, reports Shams Charania of Yahoo Sports. Charania indicates that the team has already released his non-guaranteed contract, though Utah has yet to make an official announcement. His minimum-salary pact would become fully guaranteed if not waived by the close of business Thursday, and it would also be guaranteed if another team claims him off waivers and keeps him after that date. Several other clubs are expected to have interest in the 6’6″ swingman, according to Charania. Millsap is in the second season of a three-year deal, so only a limited number of teams can snag him off waivers, unlike players signed to two-year minimum contracts.

The move, once official, will bring Utah down to 14 players, one under the limit. Chris Johnson also has a non-guaranteed contract, and while Jeff Withey has a partial guarantee of $200K, he’s already earned more than that by virtue of sticking on the roster as long as he has. That means Utah can waive Withey and avoid further financial obligation, just as with Johnson and Millsap.

Millsap, a younger brother of former Jazz power forward Paul Millsap, joined Utah on a 10-day contract almost a year ago to the day. Once that expired, he signed another 10-day deal and finally the three-year pact as the Jazz turned him into a rotation mainstay last season. That changed this year, as his 19.7 minutes per game from 2014/15 dwindled to 8.7 in 2015/16. He shot just 28.2% in 173 attempts from the floor this season, so it appears the team concluded his defensive prowess couldn’t make up for his offensive shortcomings. The 28-year-old client of Brendrick DeAngelo Simmons and Daniel Hazan has been to training camp with the Lakers, Thunder and Bucks in the past since going undrafted out of UAB in 2010, and he spoke with Zach Links of Hoops Rumors in September 2014 about his journey to the NBA.

The Jazz gave out more 10-day contracts than any other NBA team last season, so it wouldn’t be surprising to see them use Millsap’s roster spot to again cycle through players on those short-term deals. Millsap would be eligible to re-sign with Utah if he clears waivers, though that would seem unlikely.

Can you envision another NBA team as a better fit for Millsap? Leave a comment to share your thoughts.