Gabe York

Central Notes: York, Middleton, Ball, Brown

An unexpected conversation with Kevin Durant left a huge impression on Pacers guard Gabe York, who finally reached the NBA last month after years of trying, writes James Boyd of The Indianapolis Star. York, 28, signed a two-way contract with Indiana and appeared in two games, including the season finale against the Nets.

“He comes up to me talking about, ‘Yo, I seen the struggle. I seen the journey that you went through to get here, bro, like for real, congrats. I know it’s been work,'” York said. “And just knowing that KD said that (expletive), I’m really like, ‘Wow, bro. People really watched (my journey).'”

After going undrafted out of Arizona in 2016, York spent time in Germany, Greece, Israel and Italy before joining the Pacers’ G League affiliate in Fort Wayne. He admits being nervous before his NBA debut, but that stopped once he got into the game.

“My nerves went away instantly and for whatever reason in my brain, in my mind it told itself, ‘It was like, ‘Nah, you belong here,'” York said. “It felt right. Nothing felt forced. Nothing felt too fast, too nothing. … When you’re in the G League or when you’re overseas, you just keep watching TV, keep watching the NBA and you just see stats and you see players, you think they’re bigger than what they are. And then once you get on the court with them, you’re like, ‘I played basketball for 20 years, bro.’ You need to guard me, (too).”

There’s more from the Central Division:

  • Bucks guard Khris Middleton is making progress in his recovery from an MCL sprain in his left knee, but he’s not ready to start playing again, tweets Chris Mannix of Sports Illustrated. Coach Mike Budenholzer, who expressed hope last week that Middleton might be able to return at some point during Milwaukee’s second-round series with the Celtics, told reporters today that Middleton has been able to do “a little” on the court, but there’s nothing significant to update.
  • After playing just 35 games this season, Bulls guard Lonzo Ball is focused on being healthier in the future, says K.C. Johnson of NBC Sports Chicago. Ball suffered a bone bruise, then had surgery for a torn meniscus and didn’t play after January 14.
  • The Bulls are unlikely to bring back Tristan Thompson and Matt Thomas next season, but they face a more difficult decision on  Troy Brown Jr., Johnson states in a mailbag column. They have a June 29 deadline to extend a qualifying offer to Brown to make him a restricted free agent.

Central Notes: Casey, Bucks, Holiday, York

The Pistons haven’t won much since Dwane Casey became their head coach, but he has impressed owner Tom Gores with the way he has developed young talent, writes Rod Beard of The Detroit News. Casey was the reigning Coach of the Year when he was brought in to oversee the Pistons’ rebuilding project, and while the on-court success has been limited, Gores is convinced that Casey has the franchise moving in the right direction.

Casey received a contract extension last spring that will run through the 2023/24 season, and Gores indicated Friday that he wants him to serve as head coach for much longer.

“I want to see Dwane more than next year. Dwane has threaded the needle this year, because to lose a lot — and we lost a lot of games — the key is whether can you keep everybody’s spirit alive,” Gores said. “So, he has the ability to keep everybody’s spirit alive. I just think it’s such a talent. … He really understands how to keep these guys engaged while they’re going through a hard time. So, he’s really threaded the needle. He really has this ability to just to keep everybody inspired, and the players love him, and I do too.”

There’s more from the Central Division:

  • As the Bucks prepare to defend their NBA championship, they have two players on the roster who understand how hard that can be, notes Lori Nickel of The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel. Serge Ibaka was a member of the Raptors when they staged their title defense in Orlando after the league-wide shutdown due to the pandemic, and Wesley Matthews was on the Lakers, who were knocked out in the first round last season.
  • Bucks guard Jrue Holiday has earned a $306K bonus for playing in 66 games, marking the fifth straight season he has achieved the bonus, tweets Bobby Marks of ESPN. Because the incentive was considered likely, Milwaukee’s luxury tax projection won’t be affected.
  • The Pacers awarded a game ball to Gabe York, who made his NBA debut today at age 28, per James Boyd of The Indianapolis Star. York, who signed a two-way contract on Thursday, played 15 minutes and scored seven points. “Gabe is a good player,” said teammate Isaiah Jackson. “I played with him in the G League a couple times, so we’ve always been cool. It was just crazy seeing him out there doing his thing. I was telling him when we was sitting out, ‘I know it’s a lot right now, but just let the game just come to you. Don’t try to force it. … Once you get out there, it’s just natural.'”

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.

COVID Updates: Cheatham, Brown, Simpson, York

Here’s are the latest updates regarding players entering or exiting the league’s health and safety protocols or on 10-day contracts:

  • Zylan Cheatham‘s 10-day contract with the Heat expired after the team’s game against the Rockets on Friday, Anthony Chiang of the Miami Herald tweets. The Heat still have six other players on 10-day contracts and six players in protocols. Cheatham never appeared in a game with the Heat and entered protocols on Dec. 29.
  • Charlie Brown Jr. won’t receive another 10-day from the Mavericks, JD Shaw of Hoops Rumors tweets. Brown made three cameo appearances for Dallas.
  • Gabe York agreed to a 10-day contract with the Magic on Dec. 29. However, he tested positive for COVID-19 the next day, scuttling the deal, Justin Spears of Tucson.com reports. York has been playing with the G League Fort Wayne Mad Ants, the Pacers’ affiliate.
  • Guard Zavier Simpson agreed to a 10-day with the Thunder on Monday. However, he has also entered protocols, according to Shaw. It’s still possible Simpson could sign a contract once he’s cleared.

Magic, Gabe York Agree To 10-Day Deal

The Magic will sign free agent guard Gabe York using a hardship exception, a source tells ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski (Twitter link). York will receive a 10-day contract.

York has played for a series of international and G League teams since going undrafted out of Arizona in 2016. The 28-year-old had been playing for the Fort Wayne Mad Ants this season, averaging 18.3 PPG, 4.4 APG, and 1.7 SPG on .475/.487/1.000 shooting in nine games (29.3 MPG) for the Pacers’ G League affiliate.

The Magic currently have five players in the health and safety protocols, with York set to become the fifth player to join the team on a 10-day hardship deal.

While Orlando would be eligible to continue carrying all five of those players as long as five players remain in the protocols, it’s possible York will take Tim Frazier‘s spot on the roster — Frazier, whose 10-day deal expires on Thursday night, has struggled during his brief stint with the Magic, making just 3-of-17 shots from the field and recording as many fouls as points (10).

2021/22 NBA G League Draft Results

The NBA G League held its draft for the 2021/22 season on Saturday afternoon.

The 28 G League teams affiliated with NBA teams participated in the event, with the G League Ignite and Mexico City Capitanes sitting it out. The Ignite and Capitanes will be taking part in the NBAGL’s Showcase Cup this fall, but won’t be part of the 36-game regular season that tips off in late December.

The first player selected in today’s draft was former St. John’s point guard Shamorie Ponds, who was picked by the Delaware Blue Coats, the Sixers‘ G League affiliate. Ponds has a little NBA experience, having appeared in four games as a rookie in 2019/20 while on a two-way contract with Toronto.

Among the other notable picks were Nate Darling by the Agua Caliente Clippers of Ontario at No. 5 and LiAngelo Ball by the Greensboro Swarm at No. 14. Last week, the Clippers and Hornets signed and waived Darling and Ball, respectively, in an effort to secure their affiliate rights, but were unable to get those rights for procedural reasons. The two teams had to use the draft to make sure they landed those players.

The Knicks also signed and waived veteran guard Brandon Knight during the preseason and were unable to get his affiliate rights due to a procedural issue. However, Westchester passed on Knight with the No. 4 overall pick today, and the Heat‘s affiliate, the Sioux Falls Skyforce, snatched him up at No. 6. We’ll see if Knight is no longer in the Knicks’ plans or if the Skyforce intend to trade his rights to Westchester.

Lance Stephenson to the Grand Rapids Gold (Nuggets) at No. 13 and Dwyane Wade‘s son Zaire Wade to the Salt Lake City Stars (Jazz) at No. 10 were a couple of the other notable picks that played out as expected.

Here are the full 2021/22 G League draft results:


Round One:

  1. Delaware Blue Coats (Sixers): Shamorie Ponds
  2. College Park Skyhawks (Hawks): Tyler Hagedorn
  3. Fort Wayne Mad Ants (Pacers): Gabe York
  4. Westchester Knicks (Knicks): Justin Turner
  5. Agua Caliente Clippers of Ontario (Clippers): Nate Darling
  6. Sioux Falls Skyforce (Heat): Brandon Knight
  7. Texas Legends (Mavericks): Eddie Stansberry
  8. Motor City Cruise (Pistons): Jaylen Johnson
  9. Iowa Wolves (Timberwolves): Michael Gbinije
  10. Salt Lake City Stars (Jazz): Zaire Wade
  11. Texas Legends (Mavericks): Loudon Love
  12. Santa Cruz Warriors (Warriors): Alan Griffin
  13. Grand Rapids Gold (Nuggets): Lance Stephenson
  14. Greensboro Swarm (Hornets): LiAngelo Ball
  15. Lakeland Magic (Magic): TJ Haws
  16. Cleveland Charge (Cavaliers): B.J. Taylor
  17. Windy City Bulls (Bulls): Scottie Lindsey
  18. Maine Celtics (Celtics): Isaiah Ross
  19. Iowa Wolves (Timberwolves): Ruot Monyyong
  20. Lakeland Magic (Magic): Marlon Stewart
  21. Stockton Kings (Kings): Joe Young
  22. Iowa Wolves (Timberwolves): Samir Doughty
  23. Greensboro Swarm (Hornets): Chudier Bile
  24. Capital City Go-Go (Wizards): Rodney Pryor
  25. Windy City Bulls (Bulls): Tim Bond
  26. Greensboro Swarm (Hornets): Tyree White
  27. Cleveland Charge (Cavaliers): Montell McRae
  28. Rio Grande Valley Vipers (Rockets): Cullen Russo

Round Two:

  1. Memphis Hustle (Grizzlies): Karim Mane
  2. College Park Skyhawks (Hawks): Kalob Ledoux
  3. Memphis Hustle (Grizzlies): Gerard Tarin
  4. Delaware Blue Coats (Sixers): Barra Njie
  5. Raptors 905 (Raptors): Tahj Eaddy
  6. Grand Rapids Gold (Nuggets): Trevon Duval
  7. Lakeland Magic (Magic): Gary Chivichyan
  8. Motor City Cruise (Pistons): Ryan Daly
  9. Wisconsin Herd (Bucks): Keaton Wallace
  10. Salt Lake City Stars (Jazz): Pedro Bradshaw
  11. Austin Spurs (Spurs): Alexis Wangmene
  12. Fort Wayne Mad Ants (Pacers): Ian DuBose
  13. Sioux Falls Skyforce (Heat): Mike Smith
  14. Lakeland Magic (Magic): Jaire Grayer
  15. Raptors 905 (Raptors): Blake Francis
  16. Cleveland Charge (Cavaliers): Jack Pagenkopf
  17. Lakeland Magic (Magic): Devonte Patterson
  18. Fort Wayne Mad Ants (Pacers): Jordan Allen
  19. Birmingham Squadron (Pelicans): Devearl Ramsey
  20. Long Island Nets (Nets): Chris Walker
  21. Rio Grande Valley Vipers (Rockets): Eric Demers
  22. Birmingham Squadron (Pelicans): Derrick Griffin
  23. Santa Cruz Warriors (Warriors): JaQuan Lyle
  24. Capital City Go-Go (Wizards): Jachai Taylor
  25. Westchester Knicks (Knicks): Lydell Elmore
  26. Greensboro Swarm (Hornets): Ikenna Ndugba
  27. Oklahoma City Blue (Thunder): Tevin King
  28. Agua Caliente Clippers of Ontario (Clippers): Kammeon Holsey

Round Three:

  1. South Bay Lakers (Lakers): Elijah Cain
  2. College Park Skyhawks (Hawks): Landon Taliaferro
  3. Fort Wayne Mad Ants (Pacers): Will Vorhees
  4. Westchester Knicks (Knicks): Asante Gist
  5. Stockton Kings (Kings): Princepal Singh
  6. Grand Rapids Gold (Nuggets): Trevor John
  7. Raptors 905 (Raptors): Tristan Jarrett
  8. Motor City Cruise (Pistons): Devon Baulkman
  9. Wisconsin Herd (Bucks): Jaylen Bland
  10. Salt Lake City Stars (Jazz): J.C. Show
  11. Austin Spurs (Spurs): No pick
  12. Memphis Hustle (Grizzlies): No pick
  13. Sioux Falls Skyforce (Heat): Joel Ntambwe
  14. Delaware Blue Coats (Sixers): No pick
  15. Texas Legends (Mavericks): Lamonte Bearden
  16. Stockton Kings (Kings): No pick
  17. Delaware Blue Coats (Sixers): No pick
  18. Maine Celtics (Celtics): Lindsey Drew
  19. Iowa Wolves (Timberwolves): Artur Labinowicz
  20. Long Island Nets (Nets): Jaylen Fisher
  21. Agua Caliente Clippers of Ontario (Clippers): Randy Onwuasor
  22. Iowa Wolves (Timberwolves): Seth Allen
  23. Santa Cruz Warriors (Warriors): Jovan Mooring
  24. Capital City Go-Go (Wizards): Jermaine Haley
  25. Windy City Bulls (Bulls): Kerwin Roach
  26. Greensboro Swarm (Hornets): Isaiah Blackmon
  27. Oklahoma City Blue (Thunder): Marlon Taylor
  28. Rio Grande Valley Vipers (Rockets): Jimond Ivey

Teams will fill out their rosters with affiliate players, returning-rights players, tryout players, and players who are assigned to the G League from the NBA roster (including those on two-way contracts).

G League training camps open on Monday, with the Showcase Cup tournament tipping off on November 5.

Wizards Notes: Bertans, Beal, Playoffs

Davis Bertans is expected to see a significant raise on his $7MM salary when he hits free agency this summer. As we passed along earlier today, one Eastern Conference executive believes it’s possible that he commands $20MM annually on his next deal.

The Wizards have Bertans’ Bird rights, though they already owe $97.7MM to the eight players with guaranteed deals next season. That could make retaining the power forward a tough task without making corresponding moves.

Here’s more from Washington:

  • Playoffs? Bradley Beal said that remains the goal for the Wizards, as he told Hoops Rumors and other media in attendance during the franchise’s game against the Pistons. “That’s the goal, that’s every day for us,” Beal said. “Especially in mind in the back of my head. I know, especially once All-Star hits, that second half is just flying. We have to tighten up and try to get some wins here before the break because that’s usually the time when teams like to ease off the pedal a little bit. We have to take advantage of [that], that advantage of our schedule, take care of our bodies, and rally together.”
  • Ian Mahinmi, who is in the final season of his four-year, $64MM contract, has been playing well for the Wizards lately and he credits his teammates for putting him in good position to be an offensive force. “It’s a good feeling. You know me, I’m not a really big stat guy. Honestly, I like to impact the game especially on the defensive end,” the center said following the Wizards’ contest on MLK day. “If you see the way I scored today, it’s really a credit to my teammates. They find me at the right the time, the right place to dunk the ball, to shoot a couple of threes. It’s a great feeling.”
  • The Capital City Go-Go have acquired former University of Virginia guard London Perrantes, according to the team’s PR department. The G League squad has sent Gabe York to the Canton Charge in exchange for Perrantes.

And-Ones: NBA Awards, G League, Smith, York

For an entertaining piece about the process of NBA award voting, Alex Kennedy of HoopsHype interviewed voters, players and PR staffers about some behind-the-scenes aspects of how awards are handed out at the conclusion of an NBA season.

Some of the more interesting tidbits include:

  • Team PR representatives and agents will actually sometimes call a voter and argue for their respective player, coach, etc. by getting into details regarding stats, achievements, records, etc. They’ll also even point out flaws of other candidates.
  • Voters generally put a lot of work into their voting process, as social media reprisal is a scary thing (the NBA publicizes the voters’ choices each season). This can be a double-edged sword – you want to hold each voter accountable but you also want voters to have the confidence to stray from the pack if they have a reasonable basis for doing so.
  • Some more prominent writers choose not to vote for awards, as there is potential for blow-back from players, coaches, etc. they didn’t vote for, especially since the newest CBA essentially grants salary raises based on media votes.

The whole piece is worth a read. Below are some additional odds and ends from around the basketball world:

  • The NBA has released a statement regarding the success of the G League’s development of players, reporting that a total of 52% of players on 2018/18 NBA end-of-season rosters played in the G League at some point.
  • Per Keith Smith of Yahoo Sports, G League guard Scoochie Smith has signed a contract with Peristeri BC of The Greek Basket League. Smith, 24, averaged 12.2 points and 6.3 assists per game for the Canton Charge during the 2018/19 season.
  • Smith also passes along word of another overseas signing by a G League guard in Greece, with Gabe York of the Lakeland Magic joining AEK Basketball Club, also of The Greek Basket League. York averaged 16.4 PPG and 3.0 APG this past G League season.

Magic Sign Devin Davis, Waive Gabe York

The Magic announced a pair of roster moves on Thursday, signing free agent forward Devin Davis to a contract while waiving guard Gabe York.

Davis, 23, played 55 games over two seasons (2016-18) at the University of Houston. He was the only member of his team to start in all 35 games during his senior season last year, averaging 10.9 points, 6.3 rebounds and 1.3 assists per contest. He went unselected in the 2018 NBA Draft.

York, who signed with the Magic for camp earlier in the month, spent time in Germany last season with Medi Bayreuth. He played 44 games with the Magic’s G League affiliate Lakeland Magic during the 2016/17 season.

The Magic have 20 players under contract for training camp, with their first preseason game set to commence on October 1 against the 76ers.