Harry Giles

NBA G League Assignments/Recalls: 11/12/18

Here are Monday’s assignments and recalls from around the NBA:

  • The Grizzlies recalled rookie point guard Jevon Carter from the Memphis Hustle, per a tweet from Grizzlies’ PR.
  • The Kings recalled rookie big man Harry Giles to their G League affiliate in Stockton, tweets James Ham of NBC Sports California.
  • The Thunder announced in an email that they have recalled Abdel Nader from the Oklahoma City Blue.

NBA G League Assignments/Recalls: 11/11/18

Here are Sunday’s assignments and recalls from around the NBA:

Kings Exercise Options On Five Players

The Kings showed their commitment to the youth movement by exercising the rookie scale options on five players — guards De’Aaron Fox and Buddy Hield, small forward Justin Jackson and big men Harry Giles and Skal Labissiere, according to a team press release.

Teams have until the end of the month to make rookie scale option decisions but Sacramento beat the deadline by nearly a week. The biggest salary commitment, due to his status as the fifth overall pick in the 2017 draft, goes to Fox. He’ll have a salary just shy of $6.44MM for the 2019/20 season. Hield’s fourth-year option will result in a $4.86MM cap hit.

Jackson’s third-year option is worth $3.28MM while Giles will make approximately $2.58MM. Labissiere’s fourth-year option will cost nearly $2.34MM.

All of those affirmative option decisions were expected with the possible exception of Labissiere’s contract. However, he’s off to a productive start this season, averaging 8.5 PPG and 4.7 RPG.

Fox is emerging as one of the cornerstones of the franchise, averaging 17.6 PPG, 6.6 APG and 1.4 steals through five games during his sophomore campaign. Hield is scoring at a 14.0 PPG clip thus far while making 43.2% of his 3-point tries. Jackson has posted 9.0 PPG, 5.0 RPG and 1.6 APG, while Giles is averaging 3.8 PPG and 3.0 RPG while working his way back from major knee issues.

You can find all the rookie scale option decisions around the league here.

Kings’ Frontcourt Logjam Worth Monitoring

The Kings are projected by most oddsmakers and NBA analysts to be the Western Conference’s worst team in 2018/19, but there are several young players on the roster who should be fun to watch. Marvin Bagley III, 2018’s second overall pick, is one of those players, while 2017 first-rounder Harry Giles, who generated buzz with his play this summer after missing his entire rookie season, is another.

However, Bagley only played 12 minutes in Sacramento’s opening-night game on Thursday, while Giles saw just 10 minutes of action. It’s certainly not unusual for rookies to have modest roles to start the season, but the Kings’ frontcourt rotation in their first game highlighted the logjam that exists at the four and five, as Jason Jones of The Athletic details.

With Willie Cauley-Stein and Nemanja Bjelica starting at center and power forward, respectively, and Justin Jackson also playing at the four in some lineups, head coach Dave Joerger suggests it may be “tough” to find minutes for Bagley, especially since the club is thinking long-term with its top pick, Jones writes. For his part, the No. 2 overall pick said he’s “trying to stay patient” when it comes to his playing time.

“I can only control what I can control,” Bagley said after Thursday’s loss. “And whenever my number is called, I’ve just got to go hard, go 100%, and try to do whatever I can to try to help us win. I think I did all right for what I did tonight, how much time I played tonight.”

Besides Cauley-Stein, Bjelica, Jackson, Bagley, and Giles, there are a few more big men on the Kings’ roster who would like to earn some minutes up front. Skal Labissiere didn’t play in the club’s opener, and neither did veteran Zach Randolph, who wasn’t even active for the game. Throw in Kosta Koufos, who should be healthy soon after battling a hamstring injury, and you have seven or eight players vying for playing time at two positions.

In other words, there will likely be “unhappy bigs every night” in Sacramento this season, as Jones tweets.

The Kings, who don’t have serious playoff aspirations, are unlikely to address their frontcourt logjam right away, but this is a situation worth monitoring over the course of the season. At least one trade before the deadline seems likely, and vets like Randolph and Koufos could ultimately be strong buyout candidates if they’re not moved by February. Stay tuned.

Kings Notes: McLemore, Mason, Giles, Bagley

Shooting guard Ben McLemore has been among the pleasant surprises in Kings‘ training camp, relays Jason Anderson of The Sacramento Bee. The Kings made McLemore the seventh pick in the 2013 draft and he spent the first four years of his NBA career in Sacramento before signing with the Grizzlies last year. The Kings brought him back in a trade this summer.

“My confidence is on high and I want to continue to get better each and every day, help my teammates … and do whatever they want me to do,” McLemore said. “That’s defensive, offensive, whatever the case might be. I’ve prepared myself all summer for this moment, so I’m ready.”

A knee injury to Bogdan Bogdanovic that required arthroscopic surgery could provide an early-season opportunity for McLemore. Bogdanovic is projected to miss four to six weeks, opening up some minutes in the backcourt. McLemore believes he can claim them and likes the up-tempo approach the Kings have adopted.

“The style of play they want to play, it fits me perfect, the way I play, the things I do,” he said. “I shoot the ball well, I run the floor, play defense, all those kinds of things.”

There’s more today from Sacramento:

  • Frank Mason is counting on better judgment to help him win an expanded role this season, Anderson adds in the same story. A backup point guard, Mason excels at getting to the basket but his drives often resulted in turnovers or forced shots. “[Last] year, I got in there and made a couple of wrong decisions, and some games I made the right decisions,” Mason said. “It’s just watching film and making the right reads and the right plays.”
  • Harry Giles is happy that his long wait to play in an NBA game is almost over, Anderson relays in a separate story. The 20th player drafted in 2017, Giles sat out all of last season as the Kings tried to protect his knees after a series of surgical procedures. He showed promise during summer league play and will make his debut in a Kings’ uniform tomorrow night in the preseason opener. “I love Harry’s game,” said teammate Willie Cauley-Stein. “He’s going to be a beast. Like most of us, coming into the league, you’ve got to find that pace, and once you find that pace it’s going to be scary.”
  • Kings fans probably won’t see Giles and this year’s top pick, Marvin Bagley, in the lineup together for a while, Anderson writes in another piece.

Pacific Notes: Lakers, Giles, Ferrell, McMillan

Lakers president Magic Johnson is getting rave reviews from owner Jeanie Buss on the job he has done in remaking the team, relays Dan Feldman of NBC Sports. Johnson’s standout move was luring free agent LeBron James to L.A., but he also cleared away a lot of cap space and convinced a series of veterans to accept one-year deals so the Lakers can take another big swing in free agency next summer.

“I have complete faith in Magic Johnson in terms of his ability to be a leader, to know how to put together a winner,” Buss said this week in an appearance on the Rich Eisen Show. “And I have patience. And I think what he’s done has exceeded my expectations, how quickly they’ve kind of turned around the roster.”

There’s more today from the Pacific Division:

  • Harry Giles still hasn’t seen any NBA action, but he has been the most intriguing Kings story of the summer, notes Noel Harris of The Sacramento Bee. The Kings were extremely cautious with Giles after making him the 20th pick in the 2017 draft, sitting him out the entire season to make sure his knees were fully recovered from a series of surgeries that date back to high school. Giles was impressive in Summer League action and was picked as the Rookie of the Year favorite by ESPN’s Kevin Pelton.
  • Yogi Ferrell may have a prominent role off the bench in the Kings‘ backcourt, writes James Ham of NBC Sports Bay Area in an examination of the team’s potential guard rotation. Sacramento was able to land Farrell in free agency after he pulled out of an agreement with the Mavericks in search of more guaranteed money. Ham expects newly acquired Ben McLemore to be bought out or traded and notes that the team would like to move Iman Shumpert, but is having trouble finding a taker for his $11.4MM salary.
  • Jamelle McMillan is enjoying a homecoming after being added to the Suns‘ coaching staff, writes Cody Cunningham of NBA.com. The son of Pacers head coach Nate McMillan, Jamelle played four seasons at Arizona State before starting his coaching career. At age 29, he is one of the NBA’s youngest assistants.

Pacific Notes: Kings, Clippers, Lakers

The Kings added to their glut of big men when they drafted power forward Marvin Bagley with the second pick of the 2018 draft. Now, James Ham of NBC Sports Bay Area writes, head coach Dave Joerger will have to figure out how to juggle the frontcourt rotation.

Given his stature as one of the top picks in the summer draft, Bagley is a lock to play significant minutes for the Kings. He could see time at both the four and the five.

Ham writes that Harry Giles, a first-rounder in 2017, could see major minutes in his first taste of NBA action as well. The big man may have to shake off rust after sitting out last year to fully recover from knee injuries, but could be part of the Kings’ starting frontcourt of the future.

There’s more from the Pacific Division this evening:

  • A batch of coaching changes demonstrate the Clippers‘ franchise-wise commitment toward player development, Tomer Azarly of the team’s official site writes. The club will have Casey Hill join Doc Rivers’ staff after serving last year as the head coach of the team’s G League squad. Brian Adams will take his place with the Ontario affiliate and Natalie Nakase will move from the G League to big league squad’s development staff.
  • Clippers‘ forward Danilo Gallinari will ask the team to let him play for the Italian national club in September, Emiliano Carchia of Sportando writes. Gallinari was limited to just 21 games last season due to a fractured hand but appears to be healthy this summer.
  • A panel of ESPN staffers has concluded that the team that added the greatest basketball player of his generation will have the biggest turnaround this season. Alas, LeBron JamesLakers are also expected to suffer from the most team turmoil, according to ESPN’s panel.

Kings Notes: Giles, Free Agents, Summer League, Fox

Harry Giles is “on a mission” as he prepares for his first game action since being drafted by the Kings last year, relays James Ham of NBC Sports Bay Area. Giles will suit up for Sacramento’s summer league team, which begins play Monday in the California Classic.

“It’s game day!” Giles told the media after today’s mini-camp. “I remember this time last year, I said, ‘My time is coming.’ My time is now and I’ve got to go attack it.”

The Kings took a cautious approach with Giles, who suffered ACL tears in both knees while in high school. Team officials have marveled over Giles’ court vision and passing, Ham adds, and have been impressed by the intensity and physicality he has displayed in workouts. He is expected to have a significant role next season if he can remain healthy.

There’s more today from Sacramento:

  • The Kings should resist the temptation to make an immediate splash in free agency, writes Jason Jones of The Sacramento Bee, who advises the team to save its money for 2019. The organization has about $17MM in cap space, and Jones states it should avoid a repeat of last year with the signing of veterans Zach Randolph, George Hill and Vince Carter. The Kings are rumored to have interest in Milwaukee’s Jabari Parker and Chicago’s Zach LaVine, but both are restricted free agents and would require more moves to balance the roster if they come to Sacramento. The Kings, who don’t have a first-round pick in next year’s draft, appear willing to take on a bad contract to acquire one.
  • De’Aaron Fox will participate in the California Classic, but isn’t on the Kings’ roster for the Las Vegas Summer League, according to Jon Schultz of The Sacramento Bee.
  • The Kings are hoping to increase their tempo next season, and Fox has been studying Chris Paul in an effort to get ready, Jones writes in a separate story. Speed was among Fox’s greatest attributes in college, but he rarely got to show it off during his rookie season on the league’s lowest scoring team. Fox has been watching film of Paul and has talked to Bobby Jackson and Peja Stojakovic, who both played with Paul early in his career. “Even at a young age, in his rookie year, he demanded [his teammates play fast],” Fox said. “He doesn’t just run by himself and nobody runs with him; he forces his teammates to do it with him, and that’s one thing I admire about him, he’s a true leader.”

Pacific Notes: Bogdanovic, Harrell, Randle, Giles

Kings guard Bogdan Bogdanovic admits that playing for a lottery-bound team has worn him out mentally, as he told Jason Jones of the Sacramento Bee“It’s more mental because we’re out of the playoffs and these games don’t give you the same feedback at the end of the game,” Bogdanovic said. The Serbian is averaging 11.9 PPG and 3.3 APG in 27.9 MPG during his first NBA season.

In other news around the Pacific Division:

  • Montrezl Harrell has proven to be much better than a typical throw-in to a blockbuster deal, Elliott Teaford of the Orange County Register notes. The Clippers power forward is averaging 10.9 PPG on 64.4% shooting after getting tossed into the Chris Paul trade with the Rockets last offseason. “He’s been terrific. That was a find for us,” coach Doc Rivers said. “He just does more things than we knew. He’s a scoring post guy. We thought he was just an energy guy.” Harrell is also a contract bargain, as the team can make him a restricted free agent with a $1.84MM qualifying offer.
  • Entering the summer as a restricted free agent, Lakers forward Julius Randle has displayed some durability this season, as Bill Oram of the Orange County Register points out. Randle is the only Laker on pace to play in every game. “That’s a goal of mine,” Randle said. “I want to be out there competing with them every night, and as long as Coach (Luke Walton) lets me go, I’m going to be fine. I’m going to be out there.”
  • Kings rookie big man Harry Giles is eager to prove himself in summer-league play, Jones reports in a separate story. Giles has yet to make his NBA debut, as he spent the season recovering and rehabbing from multiple knee injuries. “I can understand having a guy coming off injury, that’s a rookie that hasn’t played, so I understand ‘Why are they hyping him?'” Giles said. “But … I’m ready to go. It’s not about the hype, it’s not about the media, it’s about me getting on the court and playing ball in Vegas. That’s my main goal, I don’t even think about anything else.”

Pacific Notes: Thomas, Ball, Giles, Looney

Lakers guard Isaiah Thomas was facing a tough free agent market even before Wednesday’s announcement that he will have season-ending surgery on his right hip, according to Chris Mannix of Yahoo Sports.

Only a few teams have the cap room available to give Thomas the kind of contract he was expecting, and most of them aren’t good fits. The Sixers already have Markelle Fultz, the Mavericks are set with rookie Dennis Smith Jr. and the rebuilding Bulls and Hawks aren’t likely to invest heavily in a 29-year-old guard with serious injury concerns.

“No one is going long there [with a deal], in all likelihood,” former Cavaliers GM David Griffin said. “[The hip] is a very significant factor. His whole game is predicated upon quickness and creating shot separation. If he can’t do that, he is a small non-defender.”

The Lakers have expressed interest in re-signing Thomas, but that’s only if they strike out on their primary targets in free agency.

There’s more news from the Pacific Division:

  • Lonzo Ball will have an MRI on his left knee today, but the Lakers rookie isn’t overly concerned about the results, relays Ohm Youngmisuk of ESPN. Ball had to leave last night’s game after being kneed in the back of the leg in the third quarter. “It wasn’t in the spot that I previously hurt that caused me to miss a lot of games, so I wasn’t too worried about it,” Ball said. “It’s just kind of like a bruise. It just hurts, but I should be back soon.”
  • The Kings believe injured rookie Harry Giles has a bright future, but that won’t stop them from drafting a big man if they get an early lottery pick, writes Jason Jones of The Sacramento Bee. Giles, who has sat out the entire season after undergoing three knee operations in four years, tells Alex Kramers of NBA.com he knows he will eventually get a chance to prove himself. “I know that my time is coming,” he said. “It’s not like I’m [thinking], ‘I might not play. I might not do this or do that.’ I know it’s about just me working and getting better. I have to look at it like it’s only getting me ready for when my time really comes.”
  • Kevon Looney is making the most of his playing time with the injury-ravaged Warriors, writes Monte Poole of NBC Bay Area. The third-year power forward/center has finally gotten past the hip problems that required surgery early in his career. “He’s always had that game,” said teammate Andre Iguodala. “But the NBA is all about that confidence and opportunity. He’s feeling better, too. But even when he was hurting with his hips, I could always see his game.”