Harry Giles

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.”

Pacific Notes: Hill, Giles, Chriss, Ball

If the trade rumors surrounding George Hill are true, the Kings would be parting with a valuable mentor for first-round pick De’Aaron Fox, writes Jason Jones of The Sacramento Bee. Hill’s playing time has been sporadic lately as coach Dave Joerger tries to commit more minutes to his younger guys. Hill is averaging 27.2 minutes and 10.5 points per game, both down significantly from last season in Utah.

“If it’s me with my leadership skills, if it’s me on the court, if it’s me in the weight room or the locker room,” Hill said. “Whatever, just try to do the best I can, stay professional in every situation and have fun doing it. There’s a reason why I’m here. God put me in this situation for a reason that I don’t know. So I’ve got to stay the course, trust the process and keep being a pro about it and figure it out on the fly.”

There’s more tonight from the Pacific Division:

  • The Kings used an analytic approach to the Harry Giles situation before opting to shut down the rookie for the season, relays Ailene Voisin of The Sacramento Bee. A franchise that has disdained analytics in the past researched Giles’ condition thoroughly before arriving at the decision. “We trusted modern sports medicine,” said assistant GM Brandon Williams. “That was the start of it. We knew we had to be careful because his ceiling is so high. Until you get to know Harry, you treat him as a fragile being. ‘Banged up. Went to Duke.’ We decided to wait for January, which is two years since his last [ACL] injury, and figure it out from there. What we learned these last few weeks was that the ACL is healed. Then the question became, ‘Do we push it?’”
  • An injury to Suns forward Marquese Chriss appears worse than the team originally thought, according to Scott Bordow of The Arizona Republic. Chriss has missed four games with a right hip flexor strain and may need a second MRI. “I don’t really know what’s going on with it,” he said. “Some days it feels good, some days it doesn’t. I’ve been able to get on the floor to shoot. Running is the hardest thing to do right now. It’s frustrating that I’m not able to play.”
  • Lakers rookie Lonzo Ball is making progress from a knee injury that has sidelined him for the past three games, but he still isn’t close to returning, tweets Tania Ganguli of The Los Angeles Times. Coach Luke Walton said Ball is several steps away from playing again.

Kings’ Harry Giles Won’t Play In 2017/18

The Kings will shut down rookie center Harry Giles for the rest of the season, according to James Ham of NBC Sports California, who reports that Giles won’t make his NBA debut in 2017/18. The club has confirmed the news, announcing its decision in an official press release.

According to the Kings’ announcement, Giles is “entirely healthy” and hasn’t experienced any setbacks as he continues to work his way back from multiple ACL injuries. However, citing scientific research into ACL rehabilitation, the Kings say that they’ve decided the 2017 first-rounder will focus on “more vigorous practice activity and individual workouts” rather than appearing in any games this season.

As Ham notes, Giles, who is still just 19 years old, is one of just six players in the history of the NBA to attempt to return to the court after tearing his ACLs in both knees. The Kings, who were already incorporating several rookies into their lineup this season, including De’Aaron Fox and Bogdan Bogdanovic, recognized that they could afford to be patient with Giles, initially ruling him out until sometime in 2018 back in October.

The Kings are now targeting 2018 Summer League for Giles’ official pro debut. While the former Duke Blue Devil badly wants to get on the court this season, he tells Sean Cunningham of ABC10 in Sacramento (Twitter link) that he’s on board with the organization’s plan for him.

Kings Notes: Cauley-Stein, Giles, Draft, Bogdanovic

As losses continue to pile up for the Kings, Willie Cauley-Stein suggests that Dave Joerger run the team like a college coach, relays Jason Jones of the Sacramento Bee. The Kings are now 1-7 in their last eight games with a roster that features 10 players with three or fewer seasons of NBA experience.

“If you’re not doing your job right, next man up, you get your turn next time it comes around,” Cauley-Stein said. “I think it’s got to happen like that, even for myself.”

The Kings have fallen to last in the West and are third in our latest Reverse Standings.

There’s more tonight out of Sacramento:

  • The team is being careful with first-round pick Harry Giles, who has yet to play this season because of physical concerns, Jones notes in a mailbag column. Giles hasn’t practiced much in front of the media, but team sources say he has shown impressive athleticism and shooting range in controlled settings. He is also a fast learner who has picked up the game through film sessions. Jones reports that Giles’ knees are in good shape and the Kings are focused on building up his strength to start playing.
  • The Kings’ only shot at picking up a first-round pick before the trade deadline is if a contender wants to take a chance on George Hill, Jones adds in the same piece. Hill is making $20MM this season, so matching salaries would be an issue, especially since Sacramento already has a full roster. Jones thinks the Kings might make a stronger effort to acquire a first-rounder next year, when their pick will be sent to the Sixers or Celtics.
  • Bogdan Bogdanovic isn’t a typical rookie, and the Kings aren’t treating him like one, Jones writes in a separate story. The Serbian shooting guard is 25 and has years of international experience, making him one of the leaders on a young team. The former draft-and-stash prospect agreed to a three-year, $27MM deal last summer. “He’s not a rookie,” Hill said. “To you guys he is, but to us, he’s a seasoned vet. He’s been battle tested and been playing high-level basketball his whole life now. He just knows how to play the game the right way. We feed off that. He plays with that edge, that grit, he just wants to win.”

Kings Notes: Hill, Giles, Draft Picks, Sampson

George Hill didn’t need words to express his frustration after Saturday’s loss to the Bucks, writes James Ham of NBC Sports Bay Area. Hill used emojis — 26 dark red “pouting face” symbols” — in a tweet he sent out shortly after the game. Hill played just 18 minutes last night and was part of the starting lineup that was pulled after three minutes when it fell into a 14-0 hole.

The adjustment to Sacramento has been difficult for the 31-year-old point guard, who signed a three-year, $57MM deal over the summer. Through 21 games, he is averaging 8.9 points and 2.4 assists in 25.6 minutes while sharing time with rookies De’Aaron Fox and Frank Mason. He’s taking five fewer shots per night than he did last season in Utah.

Barring a trade, Hill is committed to the Kings through at least the end of next season. His contract includes a non-guaranteed $18MM for 2019/20.

There’s more today out of Sacramento:

  • Kings fans shouldn’t count on seeing Harry Giles play this season, writes Jason Jones of The Sacramento Bee. The organization is being very careful with the rookie out of Duke, who has a long history of medical problems with both knees. Team doctors will evaluate him next month, which will mark two years since his last ACL surgery, and determine the best course for further rehab. The Kings want to see how he responds to increased activity in practice before thinking about playing him, and Jones believes that probably means keeping him sidelined for the rest of the year.
  • The Kings might be tempted to take on another team’s unwanted contract to pick up a draft pick for next summer, but they would have to consider the long-term implications of such a move, Jones writes in the same story. Sacramento’s first-rounder for 2019 will go to either Philadelphia or Boston. While Sacramento might like to add to its youth movement, it doesn’t want to take on an expensive, long-term deal that would drain future cap room. The team is counting on having market flexibility when its youngsters start to mature, which is why Zach Randolph was only signed for two seasons and Hill’s contract has a third-year buyout.
  • Injuries and foul trouble gave two-way player JaKarr Sampson a rare chance to play Saturday, Jones notes in a separate story. In just his third game of the season, the 24-year-old small forward logged 24 minutes and impressed the coaching staff with his energy and enthusiasm.

Kings Notes: Labissiere, Temple, Giles, Fox

Second-year power forward Skal Labissiere is trying to remain upbeat despite a loss of playing time, writes Jason Jones of The Sacramento Bee. Although the Kings are emphasizing youth this season, that’s not true at Labissiere’s position, where veteran Zach Randolph was brought as a free agent and has claimed the starting role.

Labissiere got a rare opportunity with 25 minutes in Saturday’s blowout loss to the Knicks, nearly as many as in the three previous games combined. The 21-year-old said he will continue to be “happy for my teammates” while working to improve.

Labissiere frequently stays after practice to work on post moves, and Randolph believes he has a bright future ahead. “I tell him, ‘Just keep playing,’” Randolph said. “He played good [Saturday]. The kid works hard and that’s all you can do, keep working and that’s what Skal does every day. He puts his time in and he works.”

There’s more today from Sacramento:

  • Garrett Temple has seen a lot of NBA cities while playing for six teams in nine years, and he would like to finish his career with Sacramento, relays James Ham of NBC Sports Bay Area. Temple, 31, has a player option worth $8MM for next season. He is in the middle of a three-year, $24MM deal he signed in the summer of 2016 and said he feels like he has found a home with the Kings. “I can see myself finishing my career here, I can definitely see that,” Temple said. “I have a great relationship with the front office. I have a great relationship with the coaching staff, the fans as well.”
  • The Kings are being cautious with rookie Harry Giles, copying the Sixers’ approach with Joel Embiid, writes Ailene Voisin of The Sacramento Bee. “Their injuries are different,” said assistant GM Brandon Williams, who formerly worked for Philadelphia, “and I think there is a little more data on Harry simply because there are not as many navicular fractures [Embiid’s foot injury] than anterior cruciate [ACL] tears. What we learned from Philly probably more than anything was that it was best to be honest and open with your fans. We didn’t want to abuse that relationship. So rather than be coy about what we were doing, we sort of laid it out there.” Giles’ extensive injury history was the reason he dropped to 20th in this year’s draft. He had two ACL tears in high school, then a meniscus tear in his left knee shortly after he arrived at Duke. He will be out of action until at least January, when Sacramento’s medical staff will re-evaluate his condition.
  • The performance of rookie point guard De’Aaron Fox is bringing hope of the start of a new era in Sacramento, according to Tim Bontemps of The Washington Post.