Jamel Artis

Western Rumors: Hart, Bender, Ellis, Artis

The Lakers made some controversial additions after LeBron James committed to them but guard Josh Hart believes they will improve, not disrupt, the chemistry of the team, RealGM’s Keith Smith reports. Hart is especially on board with the signing of point guard Rajon Rondo. “We like the guys we got. Rajon will really help us stabilize the lead guard spot,” Hart said. “Lonzo (Ball) is going to learn a ton from him. Lance (Stephenson) brings toughness and defense from the bench. JaVale (McGee) does the occasional silly thing, but he does so many good things people skip over.”

We have more from the Pacific Division:

  • Suns power forward Dragan Bender struggled mightily in summer league action entering a make or break year, Smith writes in the same piece. Bender had a difficult time defending on the perimeter and couldn’t consistently knock down his 3-point attempts, Smith continues. Overall, Bender shot 37% from the field in Las Vegas. The Suns hold a $5,896,519 team option on his 2019/20 contract and have until the end of this year’s training camp to decide whether to exercise it.
  • The Kings agreed to sign Jamel Artis to a training-camp deal because small forward is a position of need, according to Noel Harris of the Sacramento Bee. Sacramento also has Bogdan Bogdanovic, Nemanja Bjelica and Justin Jackson at that spot. Artis played for the Cavs summer-league team against the Kings and posted 14 points, seven rebounds, three assists and a steal. He saw action in 15 games with the Magic last season.
  • Suns assistant Ty Ellis is expected to be named the head coach of the G League’s Stockton Kings, Adam Johnson of 2 Ways & 10 Days reports. Ellis was the former head coach of the G League’s Northern Arizona Suns before joining Phoenix’s staff after Earl Watson was fired last season. Ellis will replace Darrick Martin, Sacramento’s G League coach the last two seasons.

Kings Sign Jamel Artis To Two-Year Deal

Forward Jamel Artis has agreed to a two-year contract with the Kings, Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN tweets. The signing is official, per RealGM’s transactions log.

Artis played 15 games, including one start, with the Magic last season. Artis, 25, posted averages of 5.1 PPG, 2.5 RPG and 1.2 APG in 18.6 MPG.

The contract is a training-camp deal, as Sacramento already has 16 players with guaranteed contracts on the roster. Both Wojnarowski and James Ham of NBC Bay Area Sports (Twitter link) note that Artis will be competing for a spot on the 15-man roster during camp.

The Kings do have a two-way contract slot available.

The 6’7” Artis went undrafted in 2017 after playing college ball at Pittsburgh. He was released by the Knicks during training camp, then signed a two-way deal with Orlando.

The Magic declined to give him a qualifying offer this summer, making him an unrestricted free agent. Artis hooked on with the Cavs’ summer league squad and averaged 11.8 PPG, 6.6 RPG and 1.8 APG in 31.4 MPG while playing five games in Las Vegas.

Two-Way QO Decisions: Walton, Cooke, Craig, More

Derrick Walton Jr. has received a qualifying offer from the Heat, Ira Winderman of the South Florida Sun Sentinel tweets. Walton, who had been on a two-way contract with the Heat, will thus be a restricted free agent next month. The undrafted 6’1” point guard out of Michigan appeared in 16 games with Miami last season.

As is the case for all two-way players who remain eligible to sign another two-way deal, the qualifying offer Walton received from the Heat will be a two-way contract offer with a $50K guarantee.

We have several other qualifying offer decisions involving two-way players to pass along:

  • The Pelicans will not make Charles Cooke a qualifying offer, Michael Scotto of The Athletic tweets. Cooke, an undrafted 6’5” shooting guard out of Dayton, appeared in 13 games for the Pelicans.
  • The Nuggets made a qualifying offer to Torrey Craig, ensuring he’ll be a restricted free agent, Gina Mizell of the Denver Post writes.  The 6’6” Craig saw quite a bit of action with Denver last season, averaging 4.2 PP and 3.3 RPG in 16.1 MPG while making 39 appearances. The 27-year-old went undrafted in 2014, then played in Australia and New Zealand before the Nuggets signed him.
  • The Magic will not make a qualifying offer to Jamel Artis, Sportando tweets. The 6’7” Artis, who went undrafted out of Pittsburgh in 2017, saw action in 15 games and averaged 5.1 PPG, 2.5 RPG and 1.2 APG in 18.6 MPG. Artis will be on the Cavaliers‘ Summer League squad, Dave McMenamin of ESPN tweets.
  • The Kings have issued a qualifying offer to two-way player JaKarr Sampson, per RealGM’s transactions log. No QO is listed for Jack Cooley, Sacramento’s other two-way player, so it’s possible Cooley will reach the market as an unrestricted free agent.

Luke Adams contributed to this post.

Southeast Notes: J. Johnson, Hezonja, G League, Batum

James Johnson may be the latest addition to the Heat’s long list of injured players, writes Ira Winderman of The-Sun Sentinel. Johnson will have an MRI today to determine the extent of a lower-leg issue that forced him to leave Saturday’s game. He is in the midst of another productive season, averaging 10.9 points, 5.2 rebounds and 4.1 assists in 28 games, and an extended absence would be a significant blow to a team already reeling from injuries.

Miami is without center Hassan Whiteside, who has missed two weeks with a bone bruise on his left knee and won’t join the team for a two-game road trip, along with Justise Winslow [strained knee], Okaro White [foot surgery] and Rodney McGruder [leg surgery]. The injuries have created more playing time for rookie Bam Adebayo and free agent additions Kelly Olynyk and Jordan Mickey.

“I’ve spent a lot of time with J.J. He’s talked to me a lot,” Mickey said. “He’s always said, ‘Eventually your number will get called.’ I’m not happy in this particular position [with Johnson out], but I’ll be ready, Coach needs me and I’m already ready.”

There’s more from the Southeast Division:

  • Injuries are also creating an opportunity for Magic small forward Mario Hezonja, notes Josh Robbins of The Orlando Sentinel. With Jonathan Isaac, Aaron Gordon and Arron Afflalo all sidelined, Hezonja has started the past three games with uneven results, Robbins notes. The fifth player taken in the 2015 draft, Hezonja may be looking at his last chance to prove himself before unrestricted free agency next summer. Orlando declined to pick up his fourth-year option in October. “You’ve just got to find your own rhythm but still be in the system,” Hezonja said. “If I go out [and try to excel] individually, I’m going to look good, but we’re going to lose. We’re not going to win a lot of games like that. Everybody has to step up like that, has to have that mindset.”
  • The Magic are enjoying the benefits of having a G League affiliate close to home, relays John Denton of NBA.com. The organization moved its affiliate from Erie, Pa., to Lakeland, Fla., over the summer, which is paying off with the recent rash of injuries. Jamel Artis and Adreian Payne were able to attend practice with the Magic Tuesday morning, even though they had a G League game that night, then were available for Wednesday’s NBA contest.
  • Nicolas Batum offered a reminder of why the Hornets gave him a five-year, $120MM contract with with a season-high 23-point performance Saturday, writes Rick Bonnell of The Charlotte Observer. For most of this season, Batum has been deferring to other players on offense after returning from a torn ligament in his left elbow that he suffered in the preseason. “I was trying to adjust myself to the other guys way too much,” he said, “when sometimes I have to let them adjust to me.”

Jamel Artis Signs Two-Way Deal With Magic

OCTOBER 16th, 7:34pm: The signing is official, per team press release.

OCTOBER 15th, 8:37am: Jamel Artis, who was waived by the Knicks in early October, has agreed to a two-way contract with the Magic, tweets Michael Scotto of Basketball Insiders.

The 6’7″ swingman signed a partially guaranteed deal with New York in June after going undrafted out of Pitt. He played for the Knicks’ entry in the Orlando Summer League, averaging 8.8 points per game.
The move fills Orlando’s allotment of two-way contracts, with Adreian Payne holding the other one. The Magic trimmed their roster to the league limit on Friday by waiving Damjan Rudez and Kalin Lucas.

Knicks Waive Jamel Artis

The Knicks have begun trimming their roster in advance of the regular season, announcing today (via Twitter) that they’ve waived forward Jamel Artis. The club is now carrying 19 players.

Artis, a 6’7″ swingman out of Pitt, signed with the Knicks this summer as an undrafted free agent. He made his debut for the club on Tuesday night against the Nets, and was reasonably productive in limited action, scoring five points in seven minutes.

Assuming Artis clears waivers and doesn’t sign with another NBA team, he’ll be eligible to join the Westchester Knicks, the Knicks’ G League team, as an affiliate player. The Knicks also have an open two-way slot and could sign Artis to a two-way contract. However, if that was the plan, the club likely would’ve kept him on the roster a little longer and simply converted his deal to a two-way pact, rather than waiving him.

With Artis out of the picture, the Knicks are now carrying three players on non-guaranteed contracts — Jarrett Jack, Xavier Rathan-Mayes, and Nigel Hayes. With 15 players on fully guaranteed salaries, it will be an uphill battle for any of those camp invitees to make the regular season roster.

Knicks Notes: Houston, Hardaway, Anthony, Contract Details, Artis

Knicks assistant general manager Allan Houston feels that New York is on the right track, relays Bob Herzog of Newsday. Although he would not comment on whether Carmelo Anthony would be playing for the Knicks next season, Houston was effusive in his praise of his new bosses, president Steve Mills and general manager Scott Perry.

“Steve and Scott have been intentional in their language about what we want to be,” said Houston. “It starts with identifying what you want to be and then going out and doing it. When I was here playing, it was very exciting and we had an identity. It’s about establishing that identity again. From what I’ve seen, the players are buying into it. I think it’s the first time in a long time that’s been the case.”

Houston also spoke enthusiastically about Tim Hardaway Jr., the Knicks’ notable free agent signing this offseason: “I’m excited for him. People tend to forget he was 20 years old coming into this environment [as a rookie]. Everybody has to grow. Everybody has to mature. He’s developed all the way around and he’s prepared himself for this. That’s the mindset I took. You want to be valuable to your family, your community, your franchise.”

Here are other relevant details regarding the Knicks:

  •  Anthony is headed for an awkward preseason, writes Marc Berman of The New York Post. The star small forward has told the Knicks that he is only willing to waive his no-trade clause for a deal with the Rockets, but the two sides have not been close on a trade. Berman writes that there is a chance that Melo will be forced to attend training camp, which will begin September 25. If Anthony holds out, it will cost him money. If he attends training camp, expect a great deal of awkwardness.
  • Bobby Marks of ESPN reports that both Knicks free agent signees Jamel Artis and Xavier Rathan-Mayes have an Exhibit 10 in their contract. This means that each player would receive a $50K bonus if he is waived and would pend 60 days with the Knicks G-League team. Unlike the protection for Nigel Hayes, the Exhibit 10 bonus doesn’t impact the Knicks cap.
  • In another story penned by Marc Berman, the writer explains how the Knicks ensured that the undrafted Artis would not get away after his impressive Summer League performance. After a forgettable first game, Artis averaged 10.1 points, while shooting over 50% in his last four contests. “I feel great about making the team,’’ Artis said. “It’s just my competitiveness. I feel I bring a lot to the game and am better than a lot of people, but I want to keep being humble. I feel I’m better than some guys that got drafted.’’

Knicks Sign Jamel Artis To Partially Guaranteed Deal

AUGUST 21: The Knicks have officially signed Artis, the team announced in a press release. It’ll be a one-year deal, and will likely end up with Artis joining the Westchester Knicks, New York’s G League affiliate.

JUNE 24: The Knicks have agreed to a partially guaranteed contract with undrafted free agent Jamel Artis out of Pitt, posts Ian Begley on ESPN Now.

The 6’7″ senior swingman will be part of the Knicks’ summer league team and will be given a chance to earn a place on the roster in training camp. He averaged 18.2 points per game with the Panthers this year and had a season-high 43 against Louisville.

New York has already promised training camp deals to Wisconsin’s Nigel Hayes and Vanderbilt’s Luke Kornet, so the competition for the final roster spots will be intense. In addition, Florida’s Canyon Barry will be auditioned during summer league for a possible training camp invitation.

Knicks Notes: Hardaway, Beasley, Artis, Porzingis

The Knicks made a sizable commitment to Tim Hardaway Jr. this offseason, bringing the former Knick back home after inking him to a four-year, $71MM deal. While there’s a lot of apprehensions about Hardaway’s deal, Knicks’ assistant general manager and former guard Allan Houston cannot wait to see how the team’s draft pick from 2013 establishes himself, Thomas Lipe of the New York Post writes.

Speaking at Hofstra University with his youth program, Houston said the current version of Hardaway is more seasoned and talented than several years ago.

“I’m excited for [Hardaway],” Houston said. “When you’re 20 years old and you’re coming into this environment, everybody has to grow and everybody has to mature. He’s developed all the way around and he’s prepared himself for this. So he’s prepared for it.” 

Houston himself is no stranger to large contracts with the Knicks as he signed a six-year, $100MM pact with the team in 2001. While Houston was more established at the time of his deal, he was also older and injuries prevented him from playing out the entirety of the contract. Hardaway, still just 25 years old, brings youth and upside to a rebuilding Knicks team. Houston feels that Hardaway can live up to expectations by not just strong on-court performance but strong off court work as well.

“The mindset I took is: you come in, you put your work in, you treat your whole being, your whole life, like you want to make the most out of it,” Houston said. “You want to be valuable, not in terms of money, but you want to be valuable to your family, your community, to the franchise. That’s where [Hardaway’s] mindset is.”

Read additional notes surrounding the Knicks below:

  • In a resounding interview with Marc Berman of the New York Post, free agent signing Michael Beasley referred to himself as a “walking bucket” who has not received the respect he deserves. The former second overall pick says he’s long past his prior marijuana suspension and said that people still dwelling on his past issues need to emulate him by growing up. For his career. Beasley has averaged 12.8 PPG and 4.7 RPG across nine NBA seasons with five different teams.
  • Just prior to signing with the Knicks, Jamel Artis spoke to Adam Zagoria of FanRag Sports. The former Pittsburgh forward expressed his excitement to join the New York squad and said his offensive skill set would mesh well with the current core.
  • A recent report indicated the Cavaliers‘ interest to acquire a budding young star in a trade for Kyrie Irving with Kristaps Porzingis topping the list. Fred Kerber of the New York Post cites league source who claim “no proposal exists” in which the Knicks part with Porzingis for Irving. Kerber adds that while the New Jersey native Irving would like a homecoming to New York, it will not come at the expense of the team’s Latvian standout.

Knicks Notes: Rose, Artis, Porzingis

After impressing the Knicks in his exit interview, Derrick Rose may have secured himself a spot with the franchise next season, Charley Rosen of FanRag Sports writes. The free agent guard will, however, have to make some adjustments should the team re-sign him.

Rosen notes that Rose will have to learn to make quicker decisions with the ball and limit the amount of times he penetrates without a plan, something he was able to do with ease during the early stages of his career.

Should the veteran enthusiastically buy into the triangle and hone up his defense in a follow up season with the franchise, he could be the team’s short-term answer at point guard until rookie Frank Ntilikina is ready to take on a larger role.

There’s more out of New York:

  • When the Knicks signed undrafted rookie Jamel Artis to a partially guaranteed deal this week, they landed a player who is eager to fill a role in the triangle offense, Adam Zagoria of FanRag Sports writes. “I’ll fit in that system very well. I’m a versatile player and I’m a shooter, so I can space the floor in the triangle,” he said.
  • Count Malik Monk‘s poor fit within the triangle as one of the major reasons why the Knicks didn’t select him with their eighth overall pick, Moke Hamilton of Basketball Insiders writes. Frank Ntilikina, on the other hand, is precisely the type of player Phil Jackson prefers as his lead guard.
  • Team president Phil Jackson is wary of building a future together with Kristaps Porzingis after the 21-year-old famously blew off his exit meeting with the franchise, Marc Berman of the New York Post writes. The worry, Berman notes, is to what extent Porzingis could damage the organization with future acts of rebellion.