Isaia Cordinier

New York Notes: Gibson, Johnson, Cordinier, Claxton

Veteran big man Taj Gibson appreciates the impact that Knicks head coach Tom Thibodeau has had on his lengthy NBA career, writes Steve Popper of Newsday. Gibson has been coached by Thibodeau during portions of three of his four NBA stops, with the Bulls, Timberwolves and Knicks.

“Well, my whole career with him has been great,” the 12-year Knicks veteran said of Thibodeau. “He’s just been a great coach in how to be ready in all facets — to be a sixth man, starting, not playing, I’m just always ready.”

There’s more out of the City That Never Sleeps:

  • Nets reserve power forward Alize Johnson had a huge game against his old team, the Pacers, grabbing 20 points and 21 rebounds off the bench (the first time a backup had notched such numbers in three years). Armed with a fresh multiyear deal from his new franchise, Johnson was a man on a mission, writes Brian Lewis of the New York Post“I didn’t play much when I was here (in Indiana),” Johnson noted. “I was ready to go out there and prove to everybody that I belong in the NBA and want to stay here for a long time.”
  • There are whispers that newly-minted First Team All-EuroCup guard Isaia Cordinier may join the Nets next season, tweets international reporter Chema de Lucas (h/t Net Income of Nets Daily). The Nets acquired Cordinier’s draft rights in a 2018 trade.
  • Athletic Nets center Nicolas Claxton has returned to the gym to rehabilitate, and head coach Steve Nash anticipates he could return for Brooklyn in a week, tweets Malika Andrews of ESPN. With former starting center LaMarcus Aldridge now retired, Claxton should be a major part of Brooklyn’s frontcourt rotation in the postseason.

Nets Notes: Harris, Irving, Prospects, Crabbe

Nets forward Joe Harris is among the players eligible for free agency next summer, and he appears certain to receive a raise on his current $7.67MM salary. As Bryan Kalbrosky of HoopsHype relays, ESPN’s Zach Lowe said on a podcast this week that league insiders have speculated Harris will be able to double his current annual salary on his next contract.

Harris has emerged as one of the NBA’s best long-distance shooters in recent years. After making 2.4 threes per game with a league-best .474 3PT% in 2018/19, he’s knocking down 2.8 per game at a 43.6% rate this season. As Lowe notes, Harris isn’t just a one-way player either — he can hold his own on the defensive end.

Because Harris signed a two-year contract with the Nets in 2018, he won’t be eligible to receive an extension from the team before he reaches the open market, so Brooklyn will have to fight off other suitors next summer in order to retain him.

Here’s more from out of Brooklyn:

  • Kyrie Irving will miss his 17th consecutive game on Saturday, having not accompanied the Nets on their trip to San Antonio. Malika Andrews of ESPN.com takes an in-depth look at where things stand with Irving’s shoulder injury and whether he’s getting close to a return, as well as what the team’s plan is for Spencer Dinwiddie when Irving is back.
  • Net Income of NetsDaily checks in on the progress being made by Brooklyn’s draft-and-stash prospects, including 2016 second-rounder Isaia Cordinier and this year’s No. 56 pick Jaylen Hands. Cordinier is having a strong season in France, while Hands is beginning to make an impact for the Long Island Nets in the G League.
  • Allen Crabbe had a disappointing second year with the Nets in 2018/19 that ultimately ended with a trade sending him to Atlanta. Speaking to Stefan Bondy of The New York Daily News, Crabbe described the knee injury that limited him to 43 games last season, explaining that he didn’t recover with rest like the team hoped. “It was just two steps going forward and four steps back is what it felt like,” Crabbe said. “It felt like we put a lot of time with the rehab and getting better and it just didn’t want to cooperate.”

Nets Notes: Irving, Prince, Cordinier

The Nets are a far more high-profile team this season than they were a year ago, thanks to the offseason additions of Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving. However, as Brian Mahoney of The Associated Press writes, this year’s team still appears to be on a similar level as last year’s, which finished with a modest 42-40 record.

While Brooklyn once again looks good enough to be competitive in just about every game, that doesn’t necessarily mean the team win a ton of those games. Still, as Mahoney relays, head coach Kenny Atkinson is optimistic that there’s room for the Nets to improve.

“We have three new starters and we’re still working through getting on the same page,” Atkinson said. “You say well, that’s your job, to get it done. And we’re working towards that. We’re not there yet.”

Here’s more on the Nets:

  • According to Joe Vardon of The Athletic, sources close to Kyrie Irving expressed frustration with an ESPN report claiming that the point guard’s “mood swings” were a cause for concern among Nets officials. As Vardon writes, Irving wants the focus this season to be what he does on the court, rather than anything he says or does off of it.
  • Brian Lewis of The New York Post takes an in-depth look at why Taurean Prince may appreciate his new two-year, $29MM contract extension with the Nets more than an average NBA player would.
  • The Nets have six draft-and-stash players under team control, and while many of them likely won’t ever play in the NBA, Net Income of NetsDaily is keeping an eye on the group, just in case it features any gems. NetsDaily’s latest check-in includes a look at 22-year-old Isaia Cordinier, who is playing for a new club in France after joining Brooklyn’s Summer League team in July.

Atlantic Notes: Cordinier, Fall, Guy, Norvell

Shooting guard Isaia Cordinier is hopeful of landing a two-way contract with the Nets, according to a NetsDaily.com report.  Cordinier anticipates playing with Brooklyn’s summer league team. The 6’5” Cordinier was taken in the second round by the Hawks last June and shipped to the Nets in the Jeremy Lin trade. Cordinier played in the French league this season after missing the 2017/18 season due to surgery on both knees to treat tendinitis.

We have more from around the Atlantic Division:

  • Central Florida center Tacko Fall’s workout with the Knicks, which was scheduled for Monday, was postponed due to travel issues, Ian Begley of SNY-TV tweets. Fall is expected to reschedule his visit. The 7’7” Fall made a strong impression at the G League Elite Camp and Draft Combine.
  • Virginia guard Kyle Guy will be among the prospects the Raptors will evaluate on Tuesday, Blake Murphy of The Athletic tweets. The Raptors will also work out three other guards, including Canadian Andrew Nembhard, Matt Morgan (Cornell) and John Konchar (Purdue Fort Wayne). Centers Dewan Hernandez (Miami-Fla.), and Zach Hankins (Xavier) are the other prospects working out.
  • The Celtics worked out Gonzaga shooting guard Zach Norvell Jr. on Monday, A. Sherrod Blakely of NBC Sports Boston tweets. Norvell is ranked No. 16 among shooting guard prospects by ESPN’s Jonathan Givony. Penn State’s Josh Reaves, ranked No. 20 on the shooting guard list by Givony, was also in for a visit, according to Bryan Kalbrosky of Celtics Wire.

Atlantic Notes: B. Brown, Butler, Anunoby, Nets

After telling ESPN on Monday night that head coach Brett Brown would be retained by the Sixers for the 2019/20 season, managing partner Josh Harris insisted today that Brown was never on the hot seat and knew during the series vs. Toronto that his job wasn’t in jeopardy (Twitter link via Keith Pompey of Philly.com).

“Lots (has) been made about this in the press, and truthfully, you can’t believe what you’re hearing,” Harris said of the Brown rumors, per Jon Johnson of WIP (Twitter link).

While the Sixers ultimately decided to stick with Brown, it’s odd that Harris should act as if the decision was never in doubt, according to Derek Bodner of The Athletic. In a tweet, Bodner points out that the team had a number of opportunities to squash speculation about Brown’s job security in recent weeks and months, and never did so.

Here’s more from around the Atlantic:

  • Although he was quiet at times and saw his stats dip during the regular season after joining the Sixers, Jimmy Butler showed in the playoffs why he’ll still be one of the top free agents on the market this summer. As Marc Narducci of Philly.com relays, Butler believes the offers he gets this July will reflect that. “Technically I think, knock on wood, I will get a max contract anywhere I choose to go,” Butler said on Monday. “So if you are talking a four-year, five-year, that is more than enough money anyway. I think I still have more than enough money now from my first deal.”
  • Raptors forward OG Anunoby is starting to get more active, but it’ll still be another week before he can get up close to full speed, head coach Nick Nurse said today (Twitter link via Blake Murphy of The Athletic). In other words, Anunoby – who is recovering from an appendectomy – sounds unlikely to play a real role in the Eastern Finals unless he’s able to get back near the end of the series.
  • Draft-and-stash prospect Isaia Cordinier expects to play for the Nets in this year’s Summer League and hopes to join the team at some point, as he tells French site BeBasket (link via NetsDaily).
  • Illinois State wing Milik Yarbrough was among the prospects who worked out for the Nets last week, tweets Nicola Lupo of Sportando.

Nets Notes: Free Agency, Dudley, Russell, Tsai

The Nets‘ 2018/19 campaign came to an end on Tuesday night, as the club lost its fourth straight game to the Sixers and dropped the series by a 4-1 margin. Still, the season has to be considered a success for Brooklyn, a team that wasn’t expected to make the playoffs coming into the year. The Nets’ unexpected postseason berth figures to be one of the franchise’s many selling points as it pursues top free agents this summer, writes Seerat Sohi of Yahoo Sports.

The Nets will have a handful of their own free agents to make decisions on as well, but role players like Jared Dudley recognize that they won’t necessarily be the club’s top priority in July. Dudley, at least, is okay with that, as Brian Lewis of The New York Post relays.

“I loved my New York situation here. … I’d have no problem coming back here. I don’t say that on every exit interview,” Dudley said. “Brooklyn has to do what’s best for them. If I’m them, I’m going big-game hunting for the big fish, then you can fall in line.”

Here’s more on the Nets as their offseason begins:

  • League sources have intimated that D’Angelo Russell will be seeking a maximum-salary contract as a restricted free agent, according to Lewis. It’s not yet known if the Nets will be willing to go that high, or if they’ll be forced to by a rival offer sheet. However, Russell told Stefan Bondy of The New York Daily News this week that “everybody is on the same page” regarding his free agency.
  • Nets GM Sean Marks wasn’t the only one to face discipline as a result of his decision to enter the referees’ locker room after the club’s Game 4 loss over the weekend. Brooklyn minority owner Joseph Tsai was fined $35K for tweeting support for Marks (link via The Associated Press). “My partners and I have spoken and the entire Nets ownership group support our GM Sean Marks for protesting the wrong calls and missed calls,” Tsai wrote. “NBA rules are rules and we respect that, but our players and fans expect things to be fair.”
  • In an interesting piece for The Athletic, Michael Scotto spoke to executives, agents, and players about the pros and cons of the contrasting rebuilding models employed by the Nets and Sixers.
  • The trade that sent Jeremy Lin to Atlanta last summer was viewed primarily as a salary dump for the Nets, but the club also acquired the rights to draft-and-stash prospect Isaia Cordinier in the swap. NetsDaily explores whether Cordinier could become a sneaky-useful asset for Brooklyn.

Atlantic Notes: LeVert, Valanciunas, Nets Prospects, Redick

Caris LeVert‘s impressive early-season performances could make the Nets a more attractive free agent destination, Kevin O’Connor of The Ringer points out. The Nets guard, who is averaging 24.7 PPG, 4.7 RPG and 4.0 APG, is a versatile talent who can mesh with anyone because of his passing, cutting and spot-up shooting, O’Connor continues. Brooklyn’s front office looks smart for taking LeVert off the table in trade discussions with the Timberwolves for Jimmy Butler, O’Connor adds.

We have more from the Atlantic Division:

  • There hasn’t been any grumbling from Raptors players who have seen their minutes reduced, Ryan Wolstat of the Toronto Sun reports. Jonas Valanciunas, Norman Powell and Pascal Siakam, among others, will see their playing time fluctuate depending on the opponent. “We are sharing the minutes. We don’t know what matchups are going to come to us,” Valanciunas told Wolstat. “We have versatility. Just have different things for different matchups. We have different lineups, different people going at some different players.”
  • Nets draft-and-stash prospects Aleksandar Vezenkov and Isaia Cordinier are off to good start overseas, according to a NetsDaily.com post. Vezenkov, a 6’9” forward has played three Euroleague games for Olympiacos and is averaging 9.7 PPG and 3.3 RPG in 17.0 MPG. Cordinier, a 6’5” shooting guard who plays in the French League, returned to action on Friday after missing last season with knee tendinitis. It’s uncertain whether they’ll pursue NBA careers next season. Another draft-and-stash player, Juan Pablo Vaulet, was sent home by his Argentine team for undisclosed reasons.
  • Sixers guard J.J. Redick believes the Magic made a smart move by trading him to the Bucks five years ago, Josh Robbins of The Athletic reports. Redick was heading into unrestricted free agency at the time but would have liked to finish out that season with Orlando. He would have considered a long-term deal with the Magic that summer. Orlando acquired forward Tobias Harris and two other players in the deal. “The trade for Tobias was definitely in Orlando’s favor,” Redick told Robbins. “You get a guy who’s going to get you 18 [points] and 8 [rebounds] at 22, or whatever age Tobias was at the time. … Things obviously didn’t turn out great for them subsequently, but I think they made the right call.”

Nets Trade Jeremy Lin To Hawks

JULY 13: The trade is now official, according to a pair of press releases issued by the Nets and Hawks. Atlanta receives Lin, Brooklyn’s 2025 second-round pick, and the right to swap 2023 second-rounders with the Nets in exchange for Cordinier and a heavily-protected 2020 second-rounder, as detailed below.

[RELATED: Cap implications of the trade for Nets, Hawks]

JULY 12: The Nets have agreed to a trade that will send Jeremy Lin to the Hawks, reports ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski. The deal will allow Brooklyn to clear the cap space necessary to take on a pair of expiring contracts from the Nuggets in another deal.

According to Wojnarowski, the Nets will receive Portland 2020’s second-round pick (top-55 protected) and the rights to 2016 draft-and-stash second-rounder Isaia Cordinier in the trade.

In addition to Lin, the Hawks will acquire a 2025 second-round pick and the right to swap picks with the Nets in 2023, Woj adds. His report doesn’t mention anything about first-round picks, so we’ll assume for now that the ’23 pick swap applies to second-rounders.

For the Hawks, adding Lin will mean further bolstering a point guard depth chart that already features leading scorer Dennis Schroder and fifth overall pick Trae Young. Schroder has been frequently cited as a potential trade candidate and Young’s performance in Summer League action has been up and down, so Lin could provide some added stability at the position. His presence also could expedite a Schroder trade, as Wojnarowski reports.

Of course, it may be premature to pencil in Lin for 25-30 minutes per game for the upcoming season, since he’s coming off a major knee injury. The veteran point guard admitted recently that he has yet to play 5-on-5 ball, but fully expects to be ready for training camp. The Hawks plan to keep him, tweets David Aldridge of TNT.

As we detailed earlier today, the Hawks had upwards of $18MM in cap room available, with the flexibility to increase that number to nearly $24MM by renouncing free agents and waiving non-guaranteed players. No additional moves will be required in order to absorb Lin’s $12.5MM expiring contract using their current cap space.

As ESPN’s Bobby Marks notes (via Twitter), Lin also had a 10% trade kicker, so if he doesn’t waive it as part of the deal, the Nets would pay that $1.25MM bonus and the 29-year-old’s cap hit would increase to $13.75MM.

General manager Travis Schlenk had said that the Hawks didn’t expect to pursue major free agents, noting that the team’s “free agency is going to be trades.” The acquisition of Lin reflects that plan, though it’s still a somewhat surprising move. Given where the Hawks are in their rebuilding process, it would have made more sense to me if Atlanta had used its cap room to take on the Nuggets’ unwanted contracts and acquired a pair of picks in the process.

That’s exactly what the Nets will do with their newly-created cap room after moving Lin. As we detail in a separate story, shedding Lin’s salary will allow Brooklyn to take on Kenneth Faried and Darrell Arthur from Denver. The Nets will receive a first-round pick and a second-round pick from the Nuggets for their troubles.

Meanwhile, the Nets should still have plenty of depth in their backcourt heading into the 2018/19 season, with Spencer Dinwiddie and D’Angelo Russell capable of handling point guard duties.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Hawks GM Talks Offseason, Millsap, Cordinier, Kaba

It has been an interesting offseason in Atlanta for new Hawks general manager Travis Schlenk, whose roster no longer features three of the team’s top four players in terms of minutes played. Paul Millsap departed in free agency, Dwight Howard was traded, and the Hawks opted not to match a pricey offer sheet for Tim Hardaway.

It’s clearly a retooling period for the Hawks, but Schlenk is averse to calling it a full-fledged rebuild. He touched on that topic and several other items of note during a conversation with Chris Vivlamore of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, so let’s dive in and round up a few highlights from the Q&A…

On whether the Hawks are rebuilding and where they stand now:

“We don’t want to concede to losing. I think a lot of times that what the term rebuilding means, you are conceding to losing. We don’t want to do that. We want to be competitive every night. The term I like to use, we are investing in the future. We have young guys. We have probably five more first-round picks over the next two years to add to this group. We are investing in our future. The young guys we have, we want to keep developing them. We want to keep our flexibility, collect assets, build the guys we have. Investing in the future. The end goal is to be able a team able to compete for a championship. We didn’t feel like maintaining where we were – where you go 60, 48, 43 (wins). We have to start going up again.”

On Millsap’s departure and why the Hawks didn’t make a stronger effort to bring him back:

“We were in contact with his representation throughout the whole process. We knew he was going to get a very good deal. Where we are as a franchise and the path we are on, it just didn’t make sense for us at this time.

“Like I’ve maintained from the beginning, our goal is to maintain our flexibility. Get good guys on good contracts. Going into free agency, we weren’t going to be out of the gates early. We are going to take our time and let everything play out. That’s what we’ve done as we sit on [July] 10th and we’ve signed one guy.”

On what the Hawks still plan to add in free agency:

“We’ll sign a third point guard. We are deciding to we get a veteran guy or do we get a young guy that we think has upside. Do we bring in a couple guys and let them battle it out? We are going to sign a power forward for sure. We’ll sign a center for sure. Probably sign three more big guys so we end up with six.”

On the plans for 2016 second-round pick Isaia Cordinier and 2017 second-rounder Alpha Kaba:

“I think Alpha will go back to Mega Leks or another team in Europe. I haven’t really talked to his agent but I expect he’ll go back there. Cordinier has expressed a desire to play in Erie (with Atlanta’s G League team). We’ve talked to his agent a little bit. We aren’t really sure if he’ll go back but he’s expressed a desire to maybe do that. We’ll figure all that out in the next month.”

Hawks Notes: Howard, Millsap, Bazemore, Workout

Dwight Howard expressed anger today after his exit interview about his deteriorating role with the Hawks, relays Jeff Schultz of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Howard saw less playing as the season wore on, then averaged just 26.2 minutes per game during the playoff series with Washington. Coach/executive Mike Budenholzer believed the offense worked better without Howard and frequently opted for a smaller lineup with Paul Millsap at center. This comes just months after the Hawks gave Howard $70.5MM over three years to return to his hometown. “It was very difficult,” Howard told reporters. “I want to play. I want to be out on the floor. I want to make a difference. I want to make an impact, and I can’t do that on the bench.”

There’s more from the Southeast Division:
  • Earlier today, we told you that Millsap intends to opt out of his nearly $21.5MM deal for next year. Even though he’s hitting the open market, the 32-year-old power forward says his first choice is to remain in Atlanta, according to Chris Vivlamore of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “Eventually I probably will opt out, yes,” Millsap said. “But I want to be here. I think talks have been pretty good, so we’ll see what happens.” Millsap led the Hawks in scoring this season at 18.1 points per game, and was second in rebounds, assists, steals and blocks. Vivlamore expects him to get maximum offers this summer, but Atlanta has the advantage of Bird rights. The Hawks can offer five years at up to $205MM, while other teams will be limited to four years at $158.4MM.
  • The Hawks’ efforts to keep Millsap will stretch from the front office to the locker room. Owner Tony Ressler has said the organization will make “every effort imaginable” to re-sign Millsap, and Charles Odum of The Associated Press writes that teammates will be involved as well. “I’m definitely recruiting Millsap to come back,” said Kent Bazemore.
  • Utah’s Kyle Kuzma was among the players at the Hawks’ pre-draft workout this morning, Vivlamore tweets. The junior power forward is ranked 59th in the latest mock draft from Jonathan Givony at DraftExpress.
  • Rookies Taurean Prince and DeAndre’ Bembry are definites for summer league, according to Budenholzer, and they may be joined by Isaia Cordinier, a second-round pick in 2016 who spent this season in France (Twitter link).