Kelan Martin

Eastern Notes: Harris, Irving, Harden, Bucks, Martin

Sixers forward Tobias Harris has become a reliable secondary option on offense for the franchise, Tom Moore of the Bucks County Courier Times writes.

Harris, a respected leader in the team’s locker room, is averaging 23.6 points, 9.3 rebounds and 34.6 minutes per game during the playoffs. He’s shot 54% from the floor during those contests, trailing only Joel Embiid in points per game.

“I would list him right now as one of my favorite teammates ever,” teammate George Hill said. “He has a great sense of awareness of how things are going. He’s very open-minded, he listens (and is) just a great guy to be around. I think he’s a big leader for us and we’re going to continue to lean on him as we go through this journey.”

Here are some other notes from the Eastern Conference:

  • The Nets won’t allow Kyrie Irving‘s ankle sprain to impact James Harden‘s return from a hamstring injury, head coach Steve Nash said, as relayed by Michael Scotto of HoopsHype (Twitter link). Harden missed most of Game 1 and hasn’t played since, with Brooklyn now missing two of its top three players due to injuries. “I think it’s an independent case. I don’t want James to be rushed back,” Nash said. “If he’s able to play next game and the game after, that’s fantastic.” As of Sunday night, no return timeline has been issued for either player.
  • Eric Nehm of The Athletic examined how the Bucks can improve their offense prior to Game 4 on Sunday. Milwaukee bounced back with a much better offensive effort in the contest, winning 107-96 while shooting 44% from the floor. The team also recorded 27 assists in the outing.
  • Brendan Rourke of Pacers.com reviews the season from Kelan Martin, who appeared in a total of 35 games. The 25-year-old Martin joined the Pacers last November after playing 31 games with the Timberwolves in 2019/20.

Eastern Notes: Schofield, Magic, Cavs, Heat, Pacers

Word broke last Thursday that the Magic intended to sign Admiral Schofield to a 10-day contract using a hardship exception, but two days later, we learned that the deal had fallen through.

As Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN explains (via Twitter), there were “inconsistencies” in Schofield’s COVID-19 testing that held up his signing and forced the Magic to move on. Orlando ended up bringing back Donta Hall, while Schofield was eventually confirmed to be negative for the coronavirus, per Wojnarowski.

It’s a tough break in what has been a difficult season for Schofield. After spending his rookie season with the Wizards, the 24-year-old was traded and waived in November, struggled in the G League after being selected first overall in the NBAGL draft, and – barring a last-minute signing – ultimately won’t end up playing any NBA games in his second professional season.

Here are a few more notes from around the Eastern Conference:

  • Joe Vardon of The Athletic argued on Monday that the Cavaliers made a mistake by signing Anderson Varejao to a ceremonial contract rather than trying to develop a young prospect using that roster spot, but Evan Dammarell of Forbes says the Cavs have already proven this season that they’re capable of developing young talent, based on the growth of youngsters like Dean Wade, Lamar Stevens, and Mfiondu Kabengele. While I’m not sure that’s a convincing case to not try to develop another player, it’s worth noting that Varejao was signed using a short-term hardship exception — if the Cavs had opted for a prospect instead, they wouldn’t have been able to sign that player to a multiyear contract.
  • Victor Oladipo (knee) still isn’t traveling with the Heat on their current road trip, but the recent return of Tyler Herro to the backcourt has given the team a boost, writes Khobi Price of The Sun Sentinel.
  • Scott Agness of Fieldhouse Files makes the case for why letting veteran assistant coach Dan Burke go was the worst move of the Pacers‘ 2020 offseason, while J. Michael of The Indianapolis Star suggests that Pacers swingman Kelan Martin – who began the season on a partially guaranteed contract – has earned more playing time.

Contract Details: Temple, Vonleh, Sixers, T. Johnson, More

Garrett Temple‘s new one-year contract with the Bulls is worth exactly the amount of the room exception ($4.767MM), according to Keith Smith of Yahoo Sports (Twitter link). However, Chicago is an over-the-cap team without the room exception available and used a portion of its mid-level exception to complete its deal with Temple.

Meanwhile, Noah Vonleh‘s one-year, minimum-salary contract with the Bulls is entirely non-guaranteed for the time being, per Smith (Twitter link). Vonleh won’t have to wait too long to find out whether or not that money will be guaranteed though — if he’s still on the roster through opening night, he’ll receive his full guarantee, Smith says.

Here are several more details on newly-signed contracts from around the Eastern Conference:

  • Justin Anderson‘s two-year, minimum-salary contract with the Sixers has a $125K partial guarantee in year one, while Ryan Broekhoff‘s one-year, minimum-salary deal with the club is non-guaranteed, according to Smith (Twitter links).
  • Tyler Johnson is already assured of his salary for 2020/21, as his one-year, minimum-salary contract with the Nets is fully guaranteed, per Smith (Twitter link).
  • Kelan Martin‘s new two-year deal with the Pacers features a $723K partial guarantee in year one and is non-guaranteed in year two, tweets ESPN’s Bobby Marks. Indiana is now over the luxury tax line by $577K, though I expect the team will look to sneak back below that line later in the season, whether or not Martin remains on the roster.
  • Oshae Brissett‘s new multiyear deal with the Raptors features a $300K guarantee for year one, tweets Blake Murphy of The Athletic. That guarantee signals that Brissett probably has a leg up in battle for Toronto’s 15th regular season roster spot.

Pacers Sign Guards Cassius Stanley, Naz Mitrou-Long

The Pacers have finalized agreements with two guards, signing rookie Cassius Stanley to a two-way contract and Naz Mitrou-Long to an Exhibit 10 deal, according to a press release on the team’s official site.
Indiana selected Stanley with the No. 54 pick in the 2020 draft out of Duke. The 6’6″ guard started all of his 29 games during his lone season with Duke in 2019/20, averaging 12.6 PPG and 4.9 RPG, while converting on 36% of his 3.0 long-range attempts a night. After two seasons with the Jazz, Mitrou-Long appeared in five games for the Pacers last season, averaging 9.4 MPG.
The announcement also confirmed several other previously-reported signings. Forward JaKarr Sampson will return for his second season with Indiana on a fully-guaranteed veteran’s minimum deal. Wing Kelan Martin, formerly with the Timberwolves, will join the Pacers on a two-year deal, though the speculation is that it will not be fully-guaranteed.
Forward Brian Bowen II, who suited up for six games with the Pacers last season, will occupy the club’s second two-way player contract slot alongside Stanley.
Mitrou-Long joins center Amida Brimah and forward Rayshaun Hammonds as the Pacers with Exhibit 10 contracts. All three will join the team for training camp, with an opportunity to make the club’s opening night roster. These are one-year, minimum salary deals that can carry an optional player bonus ranging from $5K to $50K.

Pacers, Kelan Martin Agree To Deal

The Pacers and free agent wing Kelan Martin have agreed to a deal, agent Mike Lindeman tells Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN (Twitter link).

Wojnarowski indicates the agreement covers two years. However, as Bobby Marks of ESPN notes (via Twitter), Indiana had been about $1.12MM below the luxury tax line with 14 players on guaranteed contracts. As such, Martin’s deal – which would count for $1.62MM for tax purposes – seems unlikely to be fully guaranteed unless the team has another move lined up to sneak back below the tax line.

Martin emerged as a rotation player in Minnesota last season, averaging 6.4 PPG and 3.1 RPG in 31 games (16.0 MPG), though he struggled with his shot (.392 FG%, .260 FT%).

The 25-year-old initially received a qualifying offer from the Timberwolves, making him a restricted free agent. The club withdrew that QO on Sunday though, allowing him to become unrestricted and to sign outright with Indiana.

Wolves Pull QO For Kelan Martin

The Timberwolves have rescinded their two-way qualifying offer for wing Kelan Martin, reports Jon Krawczynski of The Athletic (Twitter link). The move makes him an unrestricted free agent.

Martin emerged as a rotation player in Minnesota last season, averaging 6.4 PPG and 3.1 RPG in 31 games (16.0 MPG), though he struggled with his shot (.392 FG%, .260 FT%).

Although the Wolves liked him enough to initially make him a restricted free agent, there likely wouldn’t have been enough minutes to go around for him next season, given the team’s wing depth, tweets Krawczynski.

The Wolves still have a qualifying offer out to their other two-way free agent, Jordan McLaughlin.

All-Star Brandon Ingram, Others Receive Qualifying Offers

Pelicans All-Star forward Brandon Ingram has become a restricted free agent after New Orleans extended him his $9.48MM qualifying offer, Keith Smith of Yahoo Sports tweets.

The No. 2 pick by the Lakers in 2016, Ingram was one of the key players moved in the mega-blockbuster summer 2019 trade that sent Anthony Davis from the Pelicans to Los Angeles. He was voted the Most Improved Player and received his first All-Star berth during his inaugural season with the Pelicans in 2019/20. He is widely considered one of the best free agents among the 2020 class.

The Pelicans also issued a qualifying offer to two-way player Zylan Cheatham, Smith noted in a separate tweet. The 6’5″ forward out of San Diego State and Arizona State saw his first NBA action in three games for New Orleans during this past season.

Listed below are a few more updates on two-way players being issued qualifying offers across the NBA. These offers are one-year, two-way deals with a $50K guarantee. While these players are free to accept their QOs, most will probably seek a standard contract with their current team or an offer sheet with a new club, if possible.

  • Two-way Raptors small forward Oshae Brissett was tendered a qualifying offer, JD Shaw of Hoops Rumors tweets. The 6’7″ 21-year-old out of Syracuse appeared in 19 games for Toronto, and is now a two-way restricted free agent.
  • Timberwolves two-way players Kelan Martin and Jordan McLaughlin were both extended qualifying offers by Minnesota, making them two-way restricted free agents, per Keith Smith of Yahoo Sports (Twitter link). Martin, a 6’5″ small forward out of Butler, appeared in 31 games with the Timberwolves, averaging 6.4 PPG and 3.1 RPG. McLaughlin, a 5’11” point guard out of USC, averaged 7.6 PPG and 4.2 APG across 30 games for Minnesota. He also exhibited a solid three-point stroke, knocking down 38.2% of his 2.5 three-point attempts.
  • The Knicks have made two-way point guard Jared Harper a qualifying offer, making him a restricted free agent, per Keith Smith of Yahoo Sports (Twitter link).
  • 6’5″ Jazz two-way forward Jarrell Brantley has been given a qualifying offer by the Jazz, effectively making him a restricted free agent, per Tony Jones of The Athletic (Twitter link). Brantley appeared in nine games for Utah.

Timberwolves Notes: Saunders, Draft, Martin, Garnett

It has been nearly two months since the Timberwolves won the draft lottery, but no clear favorite has emerged for the No. 1 pick, coach Ryan Saunders tells Sid Hartman of The Star Tribune. The most commonly mentioned names are Georgia guard Anthony Edwards, Memphis center James Wiseman, Dayton power forward Obi Toppin and point guard LaMelo Ball, who most recently played in Australia.

“A lot of players are interesting to me, a lot of them,” Saunders said. “Like I said, we’re open. This draft has a number of very talented players and we’re a group that is very open-minded.”

Minnesota holds not only the top pick, but also Nos. 17 and 33. There’s a lot of evaluation to be done before the November 18 draft, but Saunders said it has been slowed by coronavirus-related restrictions that placed a ban on in-person workouts.

“Can’t do any of that. It has been a lot of Zoom meetings and interviews and then just evaluating,” Saunders said. “We do a lot of work, and we have a number of people in this organization, (assistant general manager) Gianluca Pascucci, he does a lot of work with our draft. These guys are putting together a great plan and a great step-by-step process to what we’ll do.”

There’s more from Minnesota:

  • As one of eight teams not invited to Orlando, the Wolves didn’t get the benefit of seeing how their roster would come together after a pair of significant trades at the February deadline, Hartman adds in the same story. Saunders said an offseason priority will be finding players who fit comfortably with D’Angelo Russell, who played just 12 games for Minnesota after being acquired from Golden State, and Karl-Anthony Towns“That was one of the things that was so disappointing about not playing late in the season because we felt we were going to be able to do more things with some of the other guys that we acquired around (Towns),” Saunders said.
  • After landing a two-way contract with the Wolves last season, Kelan Martin is working to expand his game, writes Ben Stinar of Forbes. Martin was a star at Butler, but had to play overseas and go through the G League to get an NBA opportunity.
  • Kevin Garnett was in Minneapolis this week, but refused to comment on a potential sale of the Timberwolves, according to Chris Hine of The Star-Tribune. In July, Garnett expressed an interest in purchasing the team as part of a group of investors.

Wolves Sign Kelan Martin To Two-Way Contract

The Timberwolves have become the latest NBA team to fill both two-way contract slots for the 2019/20 season, announcing today in a press release that they’ve signed free agent forward Kelan Martin to a two-way deal.

Martin, who played his college ball at Butler, went undrafted in 2018 after averaging 21.2 PPG and 6.3 RPG with a .447/.364/.844 shooting line in 35 games as a senior. He headed overseas to begin his professional career, spending last season with German club Riesen Ludwigsburg.

After participating in a free agent mini-camp with the Raptors in June, Martin caught on with the Timberwolves for Summer League play, recording 12.9 PPG and 6.6 RPG in seven contests (21.9 MPG) in Las Vegas. His performance helped earn him a two-way deal from Minnesota — he’ll join Jordan McLaughlin, the Wolves’ other two-way player.

As our tracker shows, the Timberwolves are the 17th team to officially fill both their two-way contract slots this offseason. The club now has 18 players under contract, with Tyus Battle also reportedly in line for an Exhibit 10 deal.

Raptors Hosting Free Agent Mini-Camp

As the Raptors‘ players and coaches focus on preparing for a potential NBA Finals close-out game in Oakland on Thursday night, the team’s front office will take a closer look at a number of veteran free agents over the next two days in Toronto.

According to a press release, the Raptors will host a free agent mini-camp at its practice facility on Wednesday and Thursday, with 23 players scheduled to attend.

Those players are as follows:

McLemore, Patton, and Payne – all former first-round picks – are perhaps the most well-known players on the list of participants, but they aren’t the only ones with some NBA experience. Artis, Brussino, Costello, Lofton, Thomas, and Weber have each appeared in at least one regular season game as well.