Leandro Barbosa

Leandro Barbosa Announces Retirement, Joins Warriors’ Coaching Staff

Longtime NBA guard Leandro Barbosa has announced his retirement as a basketball player, indicating in an Instagram post that he’ll be rejoining the Warriors as a “player mentor” coach. The team has issued a press release confirming the hiring of Barbosa.

“I guess I am ready for a new beginning, a new road,” Barbosa wrote. “Nevertheless I will continue with the good old orange ball. The transition will be quick, as it always has been to me. It is a great joy to announce my return to the Golden State Warriors as a Player Mentor Coach. I have no doubts I will feel right at home, after all, it was always like that as a player and it has been that way ever since.”

Barbosa only spent two of his 14 NBA seasons in Golden State, but he was an important scorer off the bench for the Warriors from 2014-16, winning his first and only NBA championship with the team in 2015.

The Brazilian Blur spent the first seven years of his NBA career in Phoenix, winning the Sixth Man of the Year award in 2007 when he averaged 18.1 PPG and 4.0 APG on .476/.434/.845 shooting for the Suns. Barbosa also had stints with the Raptors, Pacers, and Suns, as well as two reunions with the Suns later in his career.

For his career, Barbosa averaged 10.6 PPG and 2.1 APG on .459/.387/.821 shooting in 850 regular season NBA games, appearing in another 119 postseason contests. The 37-year-old hasn’t played in the NBA since the 2016/17 season, having spent the last few years in his home country playing in the Brazilian League.

And-Ones: Parker, Ware, Nouhi, Brazil

Longtime Spurs guard Tony Parker has long-term plans to own an NBA team, he told Marc J. Spears of The Undefeated. Parker, the president and majority owner of French team ASVEL Lyon-Villeurbanne, is part of the French group Olympique Lyonnais and hopes to eventually purchase an NBA franchise. “Right now, we have different objectives and goals,” he told Spears. “But in five to 10 years … I am the type of person who always dreams big.”

We have more from around the basketball world:

  • Former NBA point guard Casper Ware has opted out of his NBL contract with the Sydney Kings, ESPN’s Olgun Uluc reports. Ware was the highest paid foreign player in the NBL this past season and would have had his 2020/21 salary cut by 50% under a new agreement between the league and its players. The Kings will continue to hold Ware’s NBL rights if he chooses to return to Australia for the upcoming season. Ware, who averaged 17.9 PPG this past season, played for the Sixers during the 2013/14 season.
  • Belgian guard Ayoub Nouhi has decided to forgo his final two years of college ball with UT-Arlington and begin his pro career, according to Sportando’s Ennio Terrasi Borghesan. Nouhi did not enter his name in the 2020 draft, but would become auto-eligible in 2021 if he plays professionally this year. He appeared in 26 games as a sophomore, averaging 1.9 PPG in 12.5 MPG.
  • Brazil’s NBB league has cancelled the remainder of its season, Marc Stein of the New York Times tweets. Former NBA guard Leandro Barbosa tested positive for COVID-19 after the league halted play in March.

And-Ones: Wiseman, Barrett, Dedmon, Barbosa, DeMarco

The latest 2020 mock draft has Memphis freshman center James Wiseman going to the Knicks with the No. 1 pick. ESPN’s Jonathan Givony has Georgia guard Anthony Edwards going to the Cavaliers at No. 2 and North Carolina guard Cole Anthony heading to the Suns at No. 3.

We have more from around the basketball world:

International Notes: Lawson, Barbosa, Neal, Ajinca

Veteran NBA guard Ty Lawson, who spent last season in China before signing with the Wizards for their brief playoff run, is headed back overseas to his old team, according to Emiliano Carchia of Sportando. As Carchia relays, Lawson has re-signed with the Shandong Golden Stars of the Chinese Basketball Association, replacing another former NBA guard, Andrew Goudelock. Goudelock is out for the season with a knee injury.

In 46 contests in China last season, Lawson averaged 25.5 PPG, 6.5 APG, and 2.2 SPG, shooting 40.1% on three-point attempts. Although he parlayed that performance into a spot on a playoff roster upon returning to the NBA, the 31-year-old didn’t end up on a regular season roster for the 2018/19 NBA season. China’s season ends before the NBA league year does, so we’ll see if Lawson can once again find an NBA home once his overseas deal expires.

Here are a few more notes on former NBA players joining new teams or drawing interest internationally:

  • Brazilian guard Leandro Barbosa is continuing his playing career in his home country, with Minas Tenis Clube recently announcing the signing of Barbosa. The 36-year-old spent most of his lengthy NBA career with Phoenix.
  • Former Spurs guard Gary Neal, who also spent time with five other NBA clubs, has officially signed with Turkish club Banvit, the team announced in a press release (hat tip to Emiliano Carchia of Sportando). Neal last appeared in the NBA during the 2016/17 season, when he played two games for Atlanta.
  • Former NBA guard Manny Harris is also playing in Turkey, as Carchia notes. Harris, who appeared in 93 NBA games for the Cavaliers, Lakers, and Mavericks, has officially joined Turkish club Bahcesehir (Twitter link).
  • Veteran NBA big man Alexis Ajinca, who was cut in October after being traded to the Clippers, is a candidate to play for ASVEL in France in the new year. Carchia hears that Ajinca has been telling people he’ll join ASVEL and relays a report from Le Progress that also links Ajinca to the French team.

Leandro Barbosa To Play In Brazil

Veteran guard Leandro Barbosa is continuing his playing career in his home country of Brazil, having joined Franca Basquete, the team recently announced (Instagram link). Barbosa’s agreement with the Brazilian club was first reported by Giancarlo Giampietro (Twitter link).

Barbosa, who will turn 35 next Tuesday, began his basketball career in Brazil back in 1999 and has played there as recently as the 2013/14 season. However, he has spent the majority of the last 15 years playing for NBA teams, appearing in 969 total regular season and playoff games for the Suns, Warriors, Raptors, Celtics, and Pacers.

Most recently, the Brazilian guard played a part-time role for the Suns last season, rejoining the franchise with which he started his career. In 67 games (14.4 MPG), Barbosa averaged 6.3 PPG, 1.6 RPG, and 1.2 APG, with a shooting line of .439/.357/.889. Phoenix elected not to guarantee Barbosa’s full $4MM salary for 2017/18 though, waiving him in July to save $3.5MM.

The exact terms of Barbosa’s deal with Franca Basquete aren’t clear — it’s possible he’ll be free to explore NBA opportunities later in the season, if there’s any interest.

Suns Waive Leandro Barbosa

The Suns are waiving veteran guard Leandro Barbosa, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN (via Twitter). The timing of the move doesn’t come as a surprise — Barbosa’s salary for 2017/18 would have become fully guaranteed if he remained under contract beyond today.

Barbosa, 34, joined the Suns on a two-year contract last summer, but the second year was only partially guaranteed for $500K. By cutting Barbosa, Phoenix will save $3.5MM on his $4MM total salary.

The Brazilian guard played a part-time role for the Suns last season, rejoining the franchise with which he started his career. In 67 games (14.4 MPG), Barbosa averaged 6.3 PPG, 1.6 RPG, and 1.2 APG, with a shooting line of .439/.357/.889.

Phoenix entered the offseason with aspirations of landing an impact player like Blake Griffin or Paul Millsap. However, after seeing several Western Conference teams – including the Rockets, Thunder, Timberwolves, and Nuggets – make impact moves to load up their rosters, the Suns opted to stay out of the fray. They’ll focus instead on developing their young players and plan to use their cap room to accommodate other teams’ salary dumps, acquiring draft picks or young players in the process.

Pacific Notes: Collison, Chriss, Suns, Williams

With his eight-game suspension about to end, Darren Collison is ready to take over as the Kings‘ starting point guard, writes Ailene Voisin of The Sacramento Bee. The suspension, which concludes with tonight’s game, was imposed after Collison pleaded guilty to one count of misdemeanor domestic battery.Ty Lawson has struggled to run the team in his absence, and Sacramento needs Collison as a stabilizing force after a 2-5 start. “Basketball is an escape,” he said. “I’ve been able to practice and be around the team, and that has helped a lot. Being around the guys has been great. But this is definitely one of the hardest things I’ve ever gone through.”

There’s more from the Pacific Division:

  • The Suns are thrilled by what they’ve seen from rookie power forward Marquese Chriss, who was acquired in a draft-day trade with the Kings, according to Jason Jones of The Sacramento Bee. Phoenix is bringing Chriss along slowly, giving him 15 minutes per night in his first six games, and he has responded with averages of 6.2 points and 3.3 rebounds. Although he is only 19, Chriss believes he is mature enough for the NBA. “Off the court I’ve never had any problems, I never get in conflicts or things like that,” he said. “I’m real mellow, kind of just handle my business and put my head down. I’m just adjusting like everybody else is, getting up every morning, coming to the gym with the mentality that I want to get better and every day has a purpose.”
  • Former Suns coach Alvin Gentry thinks the team made wise moves in reacquiring two of his former players this offseason, relays Paul Coro of The Arizona Republic. Gentry had high praise for Jared Dudley and Leandro Barbosa, who both returned to Phoenix as free agents. “When I was there, they were great,” Gentry said. “They’re great locker room guys. There’s a maturity about them that they understand where they are in their careers and they’re going to do everything they can to help the young guys. You can put them on the court and they can be productive. That’s a win-win-win all the way around.”
  • The Lakers‘ young players are getting attention, but veteran Lou Williams is helping to close out games, writes Bill Oram of The Orange County Register. The 30-year-old guard had 10 points in the fourth quarter Friday night as L.A. blew out the Warriors“The game turns up down the stretch,” said coach Luke Walton. “It’s harder to run offenses, defenses and they’re flying at you. They’re trapping and switching. So it’s nice to have a vet out there among those young guys. When we call a play and the play is off, Lou can adjust.”

Contract Details: DeRozan, Barbosa, Spurs

DeMar DeRozan‘s new five-year contract with the Raptors has a maximum salary in the first year, but it’s not a true max deal, as Eric Pincus of Basketball Insiders details. In years two through five, DeRozan will earn a salary of $27,739,975 annually, a figure which will fall increasingly below the max over the length of the contract. In total, Pincus pegs the five-year value of DeRozan’s deal at $137.5MM, which is slightly lower than the figure initially reported ($139MM), so it’s possible the pact features unlikely incentives. Still, it looks like Toronto got a bit of a hometown discount, since DeRozan surely could’ve commanded a full max from other suitors.

Here are a few more contract and salary updates from Pincus:

  • Leandro Barbosa‘s two-year contract with the Suns was reported to have a team option on its second year. Pincus clarifies that Barbosa’s 2017/18 salary, worth $4MM in total, is partially guaranteed for just $500K.
  • Davis Bertans, joining the Spurs as a draft-and-stash prospect, received a fully-guaranteed two-year contract worth the minimum from San Antonio.
  • Ryan Arcidiacono and Bryn Forbes also got two-year minimum-salary deals from the Spurs. However, their salaries are only partially guaranteed in year one. Arcidiacono got a $75K guarantee, while Forbes received a $125K guarantee.
  • Undrafted rookie Fred VanVleet inked a two-year minimum-salary deal with the Raptors, receiving a $50K guarantee in year one from the team. He’ll face an uphill battle in his attempt to earn his roster spot, with three point guards ahead of him on the depth chart.

Suns Sign Leandro Barbosa

JULY 19, 2:01pm: The Suns have officially signed Barbosa, the team announced today (via Twitter).

JULY 6, 11:00pm: The deal includes a team option on the second year, Ramona Shelburne of ESPN.com tweets.

10:54pm: The Suns have agreed to a deal with unrestricted free agent Leandro Barbosa, Adrian Wojnarowski of The Vertical reports (via Twitter). The pact is worth $8MM over two-years, Wojnarowski adds. It’s unknown if the deal includes any options, be it player or team.

The 33-year-old makes his return to Phoenix, where he spent the first seven years of his career after being selected No. 28 overall in the 2003 NBA Draft. The veteran also made a brief 20-game pit stop with the franchise during the 2013/14 campaign.

Barbosa was a member of the Western Conference champion Warriors this past season, appearing in 68 games and averaging 6.4 points, 1.7 rebounds and 1.2 assists in 15.9 minutes per contest. He shot .462/.355/.839 from the field on the year.

Grizzlies Notes: Coaching Search, Joerger, Conley

Former Pacers coach Frank Vogel will be part of a long list of candidates to replace Dave Joerger, according to Ronald Tillery of The Commercial Appeal. Tillery expects the Grizzlies to reach out to veteran coaches David Blatt, Brian Shaw, Mark Jackson and Jeff Van Gundy. GM Chris Wallace promised a “thoughtful and comprehensive” process, adding that there is no rush to find a replacement. He plans to consider college coaches as well as NBA assistants. “We don’t have a guy,” Wallace said. “We’ll talk to people and see how it goes. It’s not about dealing from a pre-existing category. It’s about finding the right guy. We’re very much in the preliminary stages.” Tillery writes that “reshaping” the team, which the front office didn’t believe Joerger was willing to do, will be among the responsibilities for the next coach.

There’s more out of Memphis:

  • Wallace’s call for stability in the organization is laughable, writes Geoff Calkins of The Commercial Appeal, pointing out that in the past four years, the Grizzlies have been through an ownership change, two GM changes and two coaching changes. Joerger had been expressing his unhappiness in subtle ways throughout the season, Calkins notes, and felt betrayed when Jeff Green and Courtney Lee were dealt away at the trade deadline. Joerger also said the roster was “old and slow” and repeatedly praised Jazz rookie Rodney Hood, whom the Grizzlies passed over in the draft. Calkins questions whether free agent point guard Mike Conley will want to re-sign with an organization that has seen so much turnover.
  • The Grizzlies may not have enough to offer on the free agent market, according to Ben Dowsett of Basketball Insiders. Memphis must decide by June 29th whether to pick up a $9.4MM option for next season on Lance Stephenson. If the Grizzlies keep him and all their other contracts while renouncing Matt Barnes and Chris Andersen, they will have about $60MM in guaranteed salary against a cap projected at more than $90MM. However, Conley carries a $14MM cap hold, which means money must be cut in other areas for the team to offer a max contract. Vince Carter and JaMychal Green are possibilities, as they both have contracts that won’t be guaranteed until January. Brandan Wright and his $5.7MM deal could be traded to clear more room. Dowsett speculates about Eric Gordon, Joe Johnson, Arron Afflalo, Gerald Henderson and Leandro Barbosa as possible free agent targets.