Justin Patton

NBA G League Assignments/Recalls: 12/27/17

Here are the notable G-League transactions around the NBA today:

  • The Hornets have recalled Malik Monk from the Greensboro Swarm, according to the team’s Twitter feed. The 2017 No. 11 overall pick appeared in one G League game and he scored 25 points.
  • The Spurs have assigned Derrick White to the Austin Spurs, according to the team’s website. White has played in six games to date with the G League club and he’s averaging 11.7 points, 3.3 rebounds, and 2.9 assists in 22.3 minutes per game.
  • The Wolves have assigned Justin Patton to the G League, according to the team’s Twitter feed. Patton has already appeared in six games for the Iowa Wolves, scoring 9.5 points per contest.

NBA G League Assignments/Recalls: 12/24/17

Here are the G-League transactions from around the NBA today:

  • The Hawks have recalled guard Tyler Dorsey and big man Mike Muscala from the organization’s G League affiliate, the Erie BayHawks, the team announced in a press release. Dorsey has appeared in 10 games for the Hawks this season while Muscala has played in nine contests.
  • The Wolves announced that the 18th overall pick from this year’s NBA Draft, Justin Patton, has been recalled from the team’s G League affiliate, the Iowa Wolves (via Jerry Zgoda of the Star Tribune). Patton had been sidelined with a broken left foot to start a season before starting a G League assignment earlier this month. Patton, 20, appeared in six games with Iowa.
  • The Magic have recalled center Khem Birch from their G League affiliate, the Lakeland Magic, the team announced (via Twitter). Birch, 25, has appeared briefly in four games for Orlando this season.

Wolves Notes: Garnett, Rotation, Jones, Patton

Kevin Garnett was the greatest player in Timberwolves history, but it seems unlikely that he’ll get involved with the franchise during his post-playing career unless something changes with the team’s ownership situation. Garnett said as much back in April, when he suggested that he could see himself returning to the Wolves at some point, but criticized current owner Glen Taylor in the process.

Asked more recently by Shlomo Sprung of Awful Announcing about the possibility of rejoining the Timberwolves in an ownership or management capacity, Garnett again expressed interest in the idea, but once again indicated that he wouldn’t want to coexist with Taylor.

“I don’t want to be partners with Glen, and I wouldn’t want to be partners with Glen in Minnesota,” Garnett said. “I would love to be part of a group that buys him out and kind of removes him and go forward.”

With Taylor showing little interest in selling his controlling share of the franchise, a reunion with Garnett appears to be unrealistic at this point. Here’s more from out of Minnesota:

  • During his time in Chicago, Tom Thibodeau earned a reputation for leaning heavily on his starters, perhaps to a fault. Despite receiving some criticism for that approach, Thibodeau is taking a similar approach in Minnesota, indicating this weekend that he’s comfortable sticking with an eight-man rotation, per Kent Youngblood of The Star Tribune. Jimmy Butler is tied for third in the NBA in minutes per game, while Andrew Wiggins is sixth and Karl-Anthony Towns is also in the top 20.
  • Backup point guard Tyus Jones is one of those eight Timberwolves currently in the rotation, and when he replaced Jeff Teague in the starting lineup for three games, he averaged 40.0 MPG. He spoke to Youngblood about Thibodeau’s lineup habits, along with a few other topics.
  • Rookie center Justin Patton made his professional debut on Friday with the Iowa Wolves, Minnesota’s G League affiliate. While Patton played well, he’s on a minutes limit, and is expected to remain in the G League for several weeks, Youngblood writes for The Star Tribune. “We want to make sure he can handle playing a certain amount of minutes in a game there,” Thibodeau said. “Basically it’s three, four weeks of games and practices. That sort of thing.”

NBA G League Assignments/Recalls: 12/03/17

Here are Saturday’s G League assignments and recalls from across the NBA:

  • The Nets have assigned guard Isaiah Whitehead to their affiliate, the Long Island Nets, the team announced in a press release on Sunday. Whitehead has averaged  6.3 PPG, 1.6 RPG and 1.8 APG in eight games with Brooklyn this season.
  • The Timberwolves have assigned center Justin Patton to their affiliate, the Iowa Wolves, according to the team’s media relations department (via Twitter). The Timberwolves acquired the draft rights to the 20-year-old Patton in the same deal that sent Jimmy Butler to Minnesota, but he has yet to play this season due to surgery on his left foot.
  • The 76ers have recalled guard Furkan Korkmaz from their affiliate, the Delaware 87ers, per Keith Pompey of The Philadelphia Inquirer (via Twitter). Korkmaz has appeared in five games for the Sixers this season.
  • The Hawks have recalled forward Nicolas Brussino from their affiliate, the Erie Bayhawks, per Michael Cunningham of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution (via Twitter). Brussino has appeared in four games for Atlanta this season.

Willie Reed Files $13.5MM Arbitration Claim Against Andy Miller, ASM

10:40am: The Heat deny making a three-year, $15MM offer to Reed, tweets Ira Winderman of The Sun-Sentinel.

8:46am: Multiple players are parting ways with agency ASM and agent Andy Miller, and Willie Reed has filed an arbitration claim seeking $13.5MM, league sources Jeff Goodman and Chris Haynes of ESPN.com. Reed alleges he was defrauded by the agency.

The agency’s troubles are related to former agent Christian Dawkins, who was one of 10 people arrested this week in the FBI’s probe into fraud and corruption in NCAA recruiting. Dawkins was reportedly let go by ASM back in May after racking up more than $40K in charges on a player’s Uber account. An investigation by the National Basketball Players Association determined that worked out to 1,865 Uber rides, and “all but a small number” of those charges were made without the player’s permission.

However, despite no longer being certified, Dawkins remained the primary ASM representative for multiple players, including Reed, Edmond Sumner, and Justin Patton. All three of those players have now severed ties with Dawkins, Miller, and ASM, according to Goodman and Haynes, who note that Reed left the agency in July, while Sumner and Patton have done so this week.

Sources tell ESPN that Dawkins advised Reed to turn down a three-year, $15MM offer from the Heat this summer, suggesting he’d receive more lucrative offers. The big man ultimately signed a one-year, minimum salary deal with the Clippers that will pay him about $1.5MM, which explains why his arbitration claim is worth $13.5MM.

While Miller has until October to respond to Reed’s claim, it remains to be seen whether the agency will retain all of its higher-profile clients in the wake of a federal raid on ASM’s offices. Miller and ASM represent dozens of NBA players, including big names like Kyle Lowry, Serge Ibaka, Myles Turner, and Kristaps Porzingis.

Northwest Notes: Anthony, Wolves, Nurkic, Nuggets

Agreeing on a trade to acquire Carmelo Anthony on Saturday took the Thunder roster from formidable to elite. Joining the reigning NBA Most Valuable Player, Russell Westbrook, and fellow offseason acquisition, Paul George, gives Anthony the winning culture he craved in New York the last four seasons. Despite the upgrade, the Thunder are still far from the Western Conference’s best team, Fred Kerber of the New York Post writes.

Several rival executives explained to Kerber that the defending champion Warriors are still the best team in the West. While the Thunder can give Golden State a challenge, and possibly fend up the Spurs and Rockets for second place, one scout said the underwhelming package the Knicks received for Anthony is also alarming.

“Are the Thunder a better team than they were yesterday? Yes. Are the Knicks a worse team than they were yesterday? Yes. The fact they got a second-round pick says they really wanted Carmelo gone. And they needed another center? Unless they’re going to buy [Joakim] Noah out. Kanter is a horrible defender,” the scout said to Kerber.

The Warriors have been to the last three NBA Finals, winning two of them. Factoring in a roster that has two-time MVP Stephen Curry, one-time MVP Kevin Durant, and stalwarts Draymond Green and Klay Thompson, the Thunder will have a lot of work to do before claiming dominance over the West.

Below you can read additional news around the Northwest Division:

Wolves Rumors: FAs, Muhammad, Wiggins, Roth

The Timberwolves are still carrying just 11 players on guaranteed contracts for 2017/18, but head coach and president of basketball operations Tom Thibodeau expects that number to increase in the near future. As Jerry Zgoda of The Star Tribune details, Thibodeau and the Wolves plan to add three players on guaranteed minimum contracts, retaining some flexibility with the 15th and final roster spot.

As has been the case for more than a month now, the Wolves intend to add a backup point guard and two wings to their roster. While the market for backup point guards has thinned out considerably, there are still several interesting wings on the market, including Tony Allen, Gerald Green, Anthony Morrow, and Mike Dunleavy.

Here’s more on the Wolves:

  • Of course, as Minnesota looks to add a couple wings, Shabazz Muhammad remains an option, if he’s willing to settle for a minimum salary contract, writes Zgoda. “There’s an opportunity here for him,” Thibodeau said of Muhammad. “He has several opportunities to look at.”
  • The process of signing Andrew Wiggins to a contract extension will be delayed by his agent change, but Thibodeau and the Wolves still expect that deal to get done in the “next few weeks,” as Zgoda details.
  • Nemanja Bjelica and Justin Patton continue to recover from foot injuries. According to Zgoda, Thibodeau is hopeful that Bjelica will be ready for training camp and Patton will good to go for the Wolves’ regular season opener.
  • Thibodeau confirmed that the Wolves explored the possibility of acquiring Kyrie Irving from the Cavaliers, per Zgoda. “You have the responsibility to explore every possibility,” Thibodeau said. “If it makes sense for us, we’ll do it. If it doesn’t, we move on. We love the players we have. We know there’s a lot of work to do.”
  • Former Timberwolves player and current scout Scott Roth is set to become the first head coach of the Iowa Wolves, Minnesota’s newly-purchased G League affiliate, according to Zgoda. Roth will be tasked with his helping to develop young players for the Wolves, as well as implementing Thibodeau’s strategic concepts in Iowa.

Timberwolves Sign Justin Patton To Rookie Deal

The Timberwolves have officially signed first-round pick Justin Patton to his rookie contract, the team announced in a press release. The move was made official earlier this week.

Patton, the 16th overall pick in this year’s draft, was part of a trade that sent Zach LaVine, Kris Dunn, and the No. 7 pick (Lauri Markkanen) to Chicago. Patton arrived in Minnesota along with Jimmy Butler as part of that blockbuster deal.

Unfortunately, Patton’s pro career didn’t get off to a great start. The former Creighton center won’t be participating in Summer League with the club, having suffered a foot fracture during a workout, the Wolves announced on Tuesday. Patton underwent surgery to repair a broken fifth metatarsal in his left foot and will be sidelined indefinitely, per the team.

As our breakdown of this year’s rookie scale salaries shows, Patton’s four-year deal with Minnesota will be worth about $12.81MM, with a first-year salary just shy of $2.25MM.

Western Rumors: Gasol, Faried, T-Wolves, Young

While a handful of Western Conference teams have made major roster moves so far this offseason, the Grizzlies have been fairly quiet. The team reached an agreement to sign Ben McLemore, but also lost Zach Randolph and has yet to lock up its other free agents like JaMychal Green and Tony Allen.

With their window of contention potentially closing, would the Grizzlies consider moving Marc Gasol? Two league executives suggest to Chris Mannix of The Vertical that Gasol is a player worth keeping an eye on as a possible trade candidate. Mannix’s note is tucked away in a larger piece about the Celtics‘ next moves, and as he points out, Gasol would make a lot of sense as a target for Boston. However, there’s no indication that any talks have happened or that Memphis is even considering such a roster shake-up, so it sounds like speculation at this point.

Here’s more from around the Western Conference:

  • Teams are calling the Nuggets to inquire about Kenneth Faried, tweets Alex Kennedy of HoopsHype. With Paul Millsap arriving in Denver, the Nuggets’ frontcourt is getting crowded, and the team probably wouldn’t mind getting out from under Faried’s contract, so a trade remains a possibility.
  • Darren Wolfson of 5 Eyewitness News, who reported on Tuesday that the Pacers might be interested in working out a sign-and-trade deal with the Timberwolves for C.J. Miles, suggests that Indiana is further along on a Miles sign-and-trade scenario with another team (Twitter link). Meanwhile, Minnesota is waiting on Nick Young, having made him a two-year offer that is likely worth the room exception, tweets Wolfson.
  • In other Timberwolves news, first-round pick Justin Patton won’t be participating in Summer League with the club, having suffered a foot fracture during a workout, the team announced on Tuesday. Patton underwent surgery to repair a broken fifth metatarsal in his left foot and will be sidelined indefinitely, per the team.

Bulls Trade Jimmy Butler To Timberwolves

JUNE 22, 8:58pm: The trade is now official, with commissioner Adam Silver announcing it during the TV broadcast of tonight’s draft. The Wolves used the No. 16 pick on Creighton’s Justin Patton to complete the deal.

6:44pm: The Timberwolves are set to acquire Bulls forward Jimmy Butler, with K.C. Johnson of The Chicago Tribune tweeting that the two sides have reached an agreement in principle on a Butler deal.Jimmy Butler vertical

According to Johnson (via Twitter), the Bulls will receive Zach LaVine, Kris Dunn, and the No. 7 overall pick. The Wolves will also receive the No. 16 selection from Chicago. Marc Stein of ESPN.com (via Twitter) first reported that a deal was close.

The deal reunites Butler with Tom Thibodeau, his former coach in Chicago, who now serves as coach and president of basketball operations in Minnesota. Butler has been an All-Star the past three seasons and averaged 23.9 points and 6.2 rebounds with the Bulls this year.

The Timberwolves are taking on much more salary in the deal than they are unloading. They had about $24MM in available cap room after waiving Nikola Pekovic on Tuesday and receiving cap relief for his remaining salary.

Butler has three seasons left on the $95MM deal he signed with the Bulls in 2015. He is due to make nearly $18.7MM next year and more than $19.8MM in both 2018/19 and 2019/20. He also has a 5% trade bonus in his contract, tweets Bobby Marks of The Vertical, giving him an extra $1.8MM over the next three seasons.

In return, the Bulls will receive LaVine, a promising 22-year-old combo guard whose season ended in early February when he suffered a torn ACL in his left knee; and Dunn, the fifth overall pick last year. Both players are on rookie contracts and were discussed when the two teams talked about a Butler trade a year ago. Chicago will also land Lauri Markkanen, the seventh overall pick.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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