JaMychal Green

Northwest Notes: Nurkic, Jokic, Green, Rubio, Conley

A fractured right wrist may prevent Trail Blazers center Jusuf Nurkic from earning a $1.25MM bonus this season, as Bobby Marks of ESPN notes (via Twitter). Nurkic would earn that bonus if he plays in at least 62 games and Portland wins at least 44 games. Those thresholds are prorated downward from 70 and 50, respectively, to account for the 72-game season.

As we noted last night in our story on Nurkic’s injury, the Blazers do have an open spot on their 15-man roster and an open two-way contract slot, so they have options if they want to add depth up front with Nurkic and Zach Collins (ankle) both sidelined.

Portland is currently $1.87MM below the luxury tax line, according to Marks. Since two-way signings don’t count toward the tax and there’s no deadline to sign a player to a two-way deal this season, that option could appeal more to the Blazers.

Here’s more from around the Northwest:

  • Nuggets center Nikola Jokic raved about new teammate JaMychal Green after Thursday’s win over Golden State, as Alex Ladibou of Nuggets.com writes. “I’ve always said JaMychal is a guy I’d like to play with for the rest of my life,” Jokic said. “He is amazing.” A source tells Mike Singer of The Denver Post that Jokic expressed a similar sentiment privately to Green after the game.
  • Britt Robson of The Athletic feels the Timberwolves made a mistake by bringing Ricky Rubio back to Minnesota during the offseason, since Rubio’s style doesn’t mesh particularly well with D’Angelo Russell‘s. Minnesota has a -22.3 net rating so far this season when the two point guards share the court.
  • Mike Conley had a down year in his first season with the Jazz in 2019/20, but is now finding his comfort zone, writes Tony Jones of The Athletic. Conley, an unrestricted free agent in 2021, is averaging 17.3 PPG and 5.6 APG on .452/.430/.774 shooting in 11 games so far in ’20/21 after putting up just 14.4 PPG and 4.4 APG on .409/.375/.827 shooting last season.

Northwest Notes: Roby, Green, Little, Dort

During a 118-107 loss to the Magic on Tuesday, Thunder power forward Isaiah Roby demonstrated why Oklahoma City kept him on their regular season roster despite having a scoreless rookie year, according to James Jackson of The Oklahoman. Roby scored 19 points and pulled down seven rebounds in his first NBA start.

“I was really happy for him tonight, he played a phenomenal game,” center Mike Muscala said of Roby’s performance for the Thunder. “I thought he played great defense too and rebounded well. … After not playing in the first two games and then coming out and starting against [Magic center Nikola Vučević], I thought he did a really good job.”

There’s more out of the Northwest Division:

  • New sharpshooting Nuggets power forward JaMychal Green is set to play in his first game for Denver tonight, hosting the Suns, after missing the first five games of the season due to a calf strain, according to Mike Singer of The Denver Post. Green signed a two-year, $15MM deal with the Nuggets during the offseason.
  • 20-year-old Trail Blazers forward Nassir Little suffered through an intense 22 days with COVID-19, as Jason Quick of The Athletic details. He lost 20 pounds, experienced grinding headaches, and lost his senses of smell and taste. “For me, I was on the worst part of the spectrum, the hard end of the disease,” Little said. “It hit me really bad. For about seven to 10 days, I was just really miserable.”
  • Upstart second-year Thunder wing Luguentz Dort could nab an All-Defensive team inclusion this season despite being on a rebuilding squad, according to Nick Crain of Forbes. Veteran teammate George Hill thinks Dort is well on his way to carving out a niche on that end of the ball. “He’s going to be one of the best defenders in this league,” Hill said.

Western Notes: Melton, Gobert, Wiggins, Oubre

Grizzlies guard De’Anthony Melton is the latest player to miss game action due to the coronavirus pandemic. He won’t play against Atlanta on Saturday due to COVID-19 health and safety protocols, the team’s PR department tweets. Melton played 25 minutes in Memphis’ season-opening loss to San Antonio on Wednesday.

We have more Western Conference news:

  • Despite the emphasis on the 3-point shot, Rudy Gobert remains a big part of the Jazz’s offense, according to Sarah Todd of the Deseret News. Gobert made 8-of-10 field-goal attempts in the team’s season-opening victory over Portland while scoring 20 points. “When we move the ball that way it doesn’t really matter who gets the shot,” Gobert said. “I’m able to get my teammates open by just setting the screen or running the floor, or by catching the ball and then swinging to the open shooter. It’s fun.” Gobert signed a five-year, $205MM extension on Sunday.
  • Warriors wings Andrew Wiggins and Kelly Oubre Jr. are off to very slow starts, Nick Friedell of ESPN notes. Wiggins, who was acquired by Golden State in February, and Oubre, who was added in the offseason, shot a combined 14-for-58 from the field and 2-for-21 from the 3-point line in the first two games this season. Coach Steve Kerr isn’t pushing the panic button. “Kelly’s going to be fine. Andrew will be fine,” Kerr said. “Those guys are proven players in this league. I’ve got to do a better job of putting them in positions to get comfortable, too.”
  • Big man JaMychal Green left the Clippers and signed with the Nuggets on a two-year, $15MM contract. Nuggets coach Michael Malone saw that as an example of Denver’s reputation around the league, Mirjam Swanson of the Orange County Register writes. “The fact that he decided to join us, I think, was a sign of respect,” Malone said. “He wanted to be a part of the team he saw in the Western Conference semifinals when we played head to head.”

Northwest Notes: Porter, J. Green, Hood, Towns

Michael Porter Jr. is confident that he’s ready to be the third star the Nuggets are looking for, writes Ohm Youngmisuk of ESPN. Porter got uneven playing time at the beginning of last season, but injuries gave him a chance to be a starter and he became a star at Disney World, earning a spot on the All-Seeding Games second team.

Denver is counting on a strong second season from Porter after losing Jerami Grant and Torrey Craig in free agency. That leaves a huge hole at the wing spots, and Porter is ready to build on what he has learned.

“I kind of saw everything last year,” he said. “We played LeBron (James) in the playoffs, I played against Kawhi (Leonard)Paul George, all the best players at my position. So I feel like I have some experience now going into this season that I didn’t have last year in my first year playing. I went from DNPs to starting on a Western Conference finals team in the playoffs. I learned a lot in one year and looking to carry that over to this year. I want to make a really big jump. I’ve been working really hard in all the areas that I saw that I need to get better in the playoffs. I’m excited and I feel like I’m ready.”

There’s more from the Northwest Division:

  • Nuggets players are excited about the addition of free agent forward JaMychal Green, according to Alex Labidou of NBA.com. Denver was looking to add toughness, which Green has displayed by establishing a presence in the league after going undrafted in 2012. “I’m just glad he’s on our team. He’s one of those power forwards you hate to go up against,” Paul Millsap said. “He’s a guy I’ve battled against for many years. He’s always had an attitude to be relentless and to win.” 
  • Trail Blazers swingman Rodney Hood is ready for a fresh start after a year filled with personal tragedy and recovery from an Achilles tear he suffered last December, notes Aaron Fentress of The Oregonian. Hood is close to being cleared for five-on-five play and is expected to back up new additions Robert Covington and Derrick Jones Jr.
  • Timberwolves center Karl-Anthony Towns is heading into a new season with the pain of losing his mother and six other loved ones to COVID-19 still fresh on his mind, writes Jon Krawczynski of The Athletic. Towns talked about the difficulty of focusing on basketball in the midst of so much tragedy. “I play this game more because I just love watching my family members seeing me play a game I was very good and successful at,” he said. “It always brought a smile for me when I saw my mom at the baseline and in the stands and stuff and having a good time watching me play. It’s going to be hard to play. It’s going to be difficult to say that this is therapy. I don’t think this will ever be therapy again for me. But it gives me a chance to relive good memories I had. I guess that’s the only therapy I’m going to get from it. It’s not going to really help me emotionally or anything.”

Northwest Notes: Blazers, Bogdanovic, Green, Nuggets

The Trail Blazers were aggressive about seeking out roster upgrades this offseason, trading for Robert Covington and Enes Kanter while signing Derrick Jones in free agency and bringing back Rodney Hood on a new deal.

According to Jason Quick of The Athletic, a push from Damian Lillard provided president of basketball operations Neil Olshey with some extra motivation as he completed those transactions. Lillard said he’s been “transparent” with Olshey about wanting the team to make roster moves that give the Trail Blazers a “real shot” at winning a title.

“That’s just what I’ve been communicating to him: ‘Come on man, let’s really make a run for it. Let’s go for it,'” the Trail Blazers’ star point guard said. “Let’s not be the organization that says, ‘Oh, we’ve made the playoffs this many years in a row. We’ve got a good culture, we’ve got this …’ Let’s put ourselves out there and try to do whatever we can do to give ourselves a real shot. Let’s try to bring the glory back to Portland.”

Covington and Jones will likely open the regular season as the Trail Blazers’ starting forwards, head coach Terry Stotts said on Tuesday, per Casey Holdahl of Blazers.com. That would mean Carmelo Anthony coming off the bench, which is something the team discussed with him before he re-signed.

Here’s more from around the Northwest:

  • Jazz forward Bojan Bogdanovic, who is coming off of wrist surgery, said on Tuesday that he’s “really happy” with where he’s at in his recovery process, though he admitted he’s not sure whether or not he’ll be ready for the start of the season. Eric Walden of The Salt Lake Tribune has the details.
  • The Clippers, Lakers, Spurs, Sixers, and Bucks were among the teams that had interest in JaMychal Green in free agency, per Mike Singer of The Denver Post, but the veteran forward ultimately chose the Nuggets. Green cited the Nuggets’ unselfish play, young talent, and tenacity in explaining his decision. “Blowing a 3-1 lead, they just fought,” Green said, referring to Denver’s Western Conference Semifinals win over his Clippers. “It just showed you the type of heart they had.”
  • The Nuggets experienced more roster turnover than usual this fall. Now, facing an unorthodox training camp and preseason schedule, head coach Michael Malone says it’ll be a challenge to get everyone integrated and comfortable before the regular season begins. “Continuity has been one of our greatest strengths for the last few years, and this is probably the first time in my five going on six years we’ve had this much of a turnover,” Malone said, according to Kendra Andrews of The Athletic. “So that will be the biggest challenge.”

Nuggets Notes: Campazzo, Lineup, Green, Arena, Roster

Having officially signed a two-year contract with the Nuggets, longtime EuroLeague star Facundo Campazzo is excited about finally making it to the NBA, as he wrote for HoopsHype. Campazzo said that he also received interest from the Knicks and Timberwolves before signing with Denver.

“Aside from being super happy about becoming an NBA player, I’m also ecstatic about doing it so with the Nuggets,” he wrote. “There was mild interest from New York and Minnesota made a hard run at my services with my friend Pablo Prigioni recruiting me all the time, but it was impossible to say no to Denver.”

As Campazzo explained, the Nuggets’ ability to contend was a major factor in his decision. He also got feedback from fellow Argentines Manu Ginobili, Andres Nocioni, and Luis Scola about the Nuggets organization and the city of Denver, which helped win him over.

“It goes without saying that signing with the Nuggets is a dream come true, but it’s by no means mission accomplished for me,” Campazzo wrote. “I’m coming here to stay and have a relevant NBA career.”

Here’s more on the Nuggets:

  • Discussing his projected starting five today, Nuggets head coach Michael Malone said that no one besides Jamal Murray and Nikola Jokic are locked in yet, tweets Mike Singer of The Denver Post. Malone did single out Michael Porter Jr. though, telling reporters that the young forward has a chance to be an “All-League talent” (Twitter link via Ohm Youngmisuk of ESPN).
  • JaMychal Green said today that he’s not concerned about whether or not he starts, as long as he gets consistent minutes (Twitter link via Singer). The veteran forward also said he nearly signed with Denver a year ago as a free agent (Twitter link via Singer).
  • The Nuggets have formally announced that they won’t be hosting fans at Ball Arena in Denver to start the 2020/21 season due to coronavirus-related regulations and concerns.
  • The Nuggets plan on going through training camp with just 17 players under contract and won’t bring in camp invitees to fill out the final three spots, a source tell Singer (Twitter link). After signing RJ Hampton today, the Nuggets have 15 players officially locked up, with Paul Millsap and Zeke Nnaji still to be finalized.

Wolves Rumors: Hernangomez, Edwards, Rubio, Beasley

Timberwolves restricted free agent forward Juan Hernangomez initially sought an offer in excess of $10MM per year, sources tell Jon Krawczynski of The Athletic. Unwilling to meet that price right off the bat, the Wolves “essentially told” Hernangomez to prove he could get an offer from another club while they went looking for possible alternatives at power forward, writes Krawczynski.

Minnesota ended up reaching out to a number forwards in free agency, including Derrick Jones (as previously outlined), Paul Millsap, Jae Crowder, and JaMychal Green, and inquired on possible trades involving Magic forward Aaron Gordon, Rockets forward P.J. Tucker, and Cavaliers big man Larry Nance Jr., sources tell Krawczynski.

The Timberwolves didn’t have any luck with any of those potential targets, but held firm on their offer to Hernangomez, who mulled the possibility of accepting the one-year qualifying offer worth $4.64MM, per Krawczynski. Ultimately, the two sides came to an agreement on a three-year, $21MM deal that has a third-year team option.

Here’s more out of Minnesota:

  • The Timberwolves chose Anthony Edwards with the No. 1 pick last week because they believe he has the clearest path of any of this year’s draft-eligible prospects to becoming a multi-time All-Star, says Krawczysnki.
  • Sources tell The Athletic that the team’s acquisition of Ricky Rubio was partly motivated by seeing what the veteran point guard did for Donovan Mitchell and Devin Booker at his previous stops and a belief that he’ll aid Edwards’ development.
  • The Knicks told Malik Beasley he’d be their Plan B in free agency if they couldn’t land Gordon Hayward, according to Krawczynski. Recognizing that New York could be a threat to put forth a troublesome offer sheet, the Wolves went in with an aggressive pitch on the opening night of free agency and secured a commitment from Beasley on the spot. Sources tell The Athletic that Beasley has appreciated the support he’s received from the franchise since running into off-court legal problems.
  • The Timberwolves officially announced Beasley’s new deal today. Keith Smith of Yahoo Sports (Twitter link) has the year-by-year financial breakdown of that contract, which guarantees the swingman $43MM+ over three years.

Pistons Acquire Jerami Grant In Sign-And-Trade With Nuggets

NOVEMBER 22: The Pistons have officially announced the acquisition of Grant. Interestingly, the team’s press release states that it’s a sign-and-trade, with Grant and the draft rights to Nikola Radicevic being sent to Detroit, while Denver receives cash considerations.

The move will allow the Nuggets to create a traded player exception worth about $9.5MM.


NOVEMBER 20: The Pistons are signing veteran free agent Jerami Grant to a three-year contract worth $60MM, sources tell Shams Charania of The Athletic (Twitter link). The move will reunite Grant with new Pistons GM Troy Weaver, who worked in Oklahoma City’s front office during the forward’s stint with the team.

Grant, 26, was acquired by the Nuggets during the 2019 offseason from the Thunder in exchange for a first-round pick. He came off the bench for most of the season in Denver, averaging 12.0 PPG and 3.5 RPG with a shooting line of .478/.389/.750 in 71 games (26.6 MPG). He entered the team’s starting lineup in the playoffs due to Will Barton‘s absence and played a key role in Denver’s run to the Western Finals.

Grant’s size, defensive versatility, and ability to knock down outside shots made him a popular free agent this fall, though it’s still a bit surprising that the rebuilding Pistons were the team to land him. Detroit entered this week with cap room but have made a series of moves eating into that cap room and will have re-open some of it to complete the Grant signing.

The Nuggets, meanwhile, will be on the lookout for frontcourt players after two of their key free agents – Grant and Mason Plumlee – agreed to deals with Detroit tonight. According to Denver-area reporter T.J. McBride (Twitter link), the Nuggets offered to match Grant’s three-year, $60MM offer from the Pistons, but he chose Detroit because he wants a bigger role.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Nuggets Sign JaMychal Green To Two-Year Deal

NOVEMBER 30: The Nuggets have officially signed Green, the team announced in a press release.


NOVEMBER 21: The Nuggets have reached an agreement to sign free agent forward JaMychal Green to a two-year, $15MM contract, league sources tell Shams Charania of The Athletic (Twitter link). The deal will include a second-year player option.

Denver’s depth chart took a hit earlier tonight when power forward Jerami Grant and center Mason Plumlee both agreed to sign with the Pistons. Signing Green will allow the team to replenish some of that lost frontcourt depth.

Green’s numbers don’t jump off the page, but he’s a reliable three-point shooter (39.4% over the last two seasons) and a versatile frontcourt defender who can play the five in smaller lineups. He averaged 6.8 PPG and 6.2 RPG in 63 games (20.7 MPG) for the Clippers last season and was an important role player for the team in the postseason.

Based on the reported figures for Green’s new deal, it appears the Nuggets will use a chunk of their mid-level exception to bring him aboard.

Meanwhile, the Clippers will now be looking to fill some holes in the frontcourt themselves. Although they agreed to re-sign Marcus Morris, they’ve now lost both Green and Montrezl Harrell since free agency opened.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

JaMychal Green Declines Player Option, Hits Free Agency

Athletic Clippers forward JaMychal Green is turning down his $5MM player option and will hit the open market as a free agent, Shams Charania of The Athletic and Stadium tweets. Green had inked a two-year, $10MM deal with the starry Clippers, with an opt-out clause for this season, last year ahead of an anticipated deep postseason run.

Green now joins fellow Clippers forwards Montrezl Harrell and Marcus Morris in free agency as Los Angeles weighs options for how to reshape its front court, following a disappointing 2019/20 postseason that saw the Clippers falling in seven games to the Nuggets during the conference semifinals.

Though the 6’8″ Green did not provide the scoring punch or positional versatility of Morris or Harrell, he carved out a consistent rotation role with the Clippers last season nevertheless. In 20.7 MPG, Green averaged 6.8 PPG and 6.2 RPG. He could be an intriguing option for many contenders as an affordable, floor-spacing big man. He connected on 38.7% of his 3.8 three point attempts per game and shot 75% from the charity stripe.