Lester Quinones

Warriors Working Out Ben McLemore, Elfrid Payton, Others

The Warriors are bringing in a number of veteran free agents this week for workouts, league sources tell Shams Charania and Anthony Slater of The Athletic.

According to Charania and Slater, some of the free agents taking part in the workouts are Ben McLemore, Elfrid Payton, Rondae Hollis-Jefferson, Kenneth Faried, Miye Oni, Ty-Shon Alexander, Wesley Saunders, and Jon Axel Gudmundsson.

Golden State also held similar free agent workouts in August, according to Charania and Slater, who say that Shabazz Muhammad, Solomon Hill, Tyler Cook, and Kelan Martin were among the players who participated in those sessions about two weeks ago.

The purpose of this week’s workouts is twofold — as Tim Kawakami of The Athletic tweets, the players currently on the Warriors’ roster are beginning their informal pre-camp work at the team’s facility this week, so the free agents who join them will help ensure there are enough bodies to play 5-on-5 scrimmages. Additionally, there’s an expectation that the Warriors could sign one or more of the auditioning veterans to their 20-man training camp roster, per Charania and Slater.

Golden State currently has 18 players under contract (13 on guaranteed standard deals), with Jerome Robinson expected to be the 19th. That leaves one spot available for now.

Andre Iguodala has yet to decide whether he’ll retire or return to the Warriors for another season, so it’s possible he could fill that 20th and final roster spot (and become the 14th man on the team’s projected regular season roster). Robinson, Mac McClung, Pat Spencer, and Trevion Williams are among the camp invitees who could compete for a place on the 15-man regular season roster, especially if Iguodala doesn’t return.

Charania and Slater also note that that, while Lester Quinones and Quinndary Weatherspoon are currently on two-way deals, those roster spots are flexible. According to The Athletic’s duo, the Warriors are high on Weatherspoon, who is a candidate to join the 15-man roster either this fall or later in the season

Lester Quinones Signs Two-Way Deal With Warriors

JULY 5: Quinones’ two-way deal with the Warriors is now official, the team announced (via Twitter).


JUNE 23: The Warriors are adding Memphis guard Lester Quinones on a two-way contract, Shams Charania of Stadium tweets.

Quinones averaged 10 PPG, 3.5 RPG, 1.3 APG and 1.2 SPG during his junior season. He shot 44.9% from the field and 38.9% on 3-point attempts.

Golden State had guards Chris Chiozza and Quinndary Weatherspoon on two-way deals at the end of the season, but Chiozza is no longer eligible for a two-way contract and there’s no guarantee Weatherspoon will be back.

New York Notes: Nets, M. James, Knicks, Workouts

After playing with the Nets down the stretch in the 2020/21 season, veteran guard Mike James is interested in returning to Brooklyn, a league insider tells NetsDaily. James remains close with star forward Kevin Durant, who traveled to Europe to watch his former teammate play in the EuroLeague this spring.

With Kyrie Irving, Patty Mills, and Goran Dragic all eligible for free agency, the Nets’ backcourt could undergo some changes this offseason, so a reunion with James isn’t out of the question. The team still controls his Non-Bird rights and could offer him either a minimum-salary deal or something slightly above it.

Still, it’s unclear whether the Nets have interest in bringing back James, who threw some cold water on NetsDaily’s report himself in a reply on Twitter.

“(I don’t know) how to even take this rumor,” James wrote. “Would I like to play alongside my friend Kevin? Yes. But I’d also like to play alongside my 10 other of my close friends. Some play in the NBA, Europe and some don’t play professional.”

Here’s more on the NBA’s two New York teams:

  • The Knicks worked out a handful of possible lottery targets on Monday. In addition to TyTy Washington, G League Ignite guard Dyson Daniels and Ohio State wing Malaki Branham were also in town to audition for the team, according to Fred Katz of The Athletic and Ian Begley of SNY.tv (Twitter links).
  • Memphis forward Josh Minott, viewed as a probable second-round pick, also worked out for the Knicks on Monday, tweets Adam Zagoria of ZagsBlog.com.
  • Memphis shooting guard Lester Quinones is working out for the Knicks on Tuesday and the Nets on Thursday, a source tells Jake Weingarten of StockRisers.com (Twitter link). Quinones has previously worked out for the Warriors and Lakers, among other teams.
  • Notre Dame forward Paul Atkinson, the 2020 Ivy League Player of the Year at Yale, will work out on Tuesday for the Nets, tweets Zagoria.
  • Fred Katz of The Athletic explores several hypothetical scenarios in which the Knicks trade up from No. 11, weighing how many assets they’d have to give up and whether their potential trade partners would have legitimate interest.

Southeast Notes: Heat, Magic, Quinones, Wizards

After an exciting 53-29 season that saw them get to within one win of its second NBA Finals appearance in three seasons, the Heat appear set to make some adjustments during the summer to get over the hump. Ira Winderman of the South Florida Sun Sentinel notes that the Heat rarely leave a stone unturned in the free agency and trade markets, and that the team could pursue adding All-Star talents like guards Donovan Mitchell and Bradley Beal if they become available.

There’s more out of the Southeast Division:

  • The Magic worked out Memphis guard Lester Quinones over the weekend, according to Jake Weingarten of StockRisers.com (Twitter link). Quinones played for three seasons with the Tigers, averaging 10.1 PPG, 4.3 RPG, 1.8 APG and 0.9 SPG across 87 games, including 81 starts. The Magic possess the top pick in the 2022 draft, as well as the No. 32 and No. 35 selections in the second round.
  • The Wizards are set to work out several young hopefuls tomorrow ahead of the draft, per Ava Wallace of the Washington Post (Twitter link). Wallace notes that Vanderbilt guard Scotty Pippen Jr., LSU forward Tari Eason, Baylor guard James Akinjo, and Connecticut guard R.J. Cole will be working out for Washington. The Wizards possess the No. 10 and No. 56 picks in the upcoming 2022 NBA draft. Eason is the highest-ranked prospect among these four, coming in at No. 18 on ESPN’s big board.
  • In case you missed it, we took a look at the Hawks‘ 2022 offseason, examining the personnel that could be on the move, both among players under contract for the 2022/23 season and free agents.

Southeast Draft Notes: Murray, Hawks, Wizards, Hornets

The Magic hold the No. 1 pick and Iowa’s Keegan Murray isn’t expected to go higher than No. 4 in the lottery. That didn’t prevent Orlando from doing its due diligence on the high-scoring wing. Murray came in for a pre-draft workout on Thursday, Khobi Price of the Orlando Sentinel tweets. The two sides also had a discussion during the draft combine in Chicago, Price adds.

We have more developments from the Southeast Division:

Draft Decisions: Timme, Sasser, Quinones, Bernard, More

Big man Drew Timme, ranked No. 63 on ESPN’s big board, has withdrawn from the 2022 NBA draft and will return to Gonzaga for his senior season, he announced via Twitter.

Timme was the 2021/22 West Coast Conference Player of the Year and a two-time All-American for the Bulldogs, but he struggled defensively and needs to “modernize his game” by adding a three-point shot and improving on the boards, according to ESPN’s Jonathan Givony.

Houston guard Marcus Sasser also announced (on Twitter) that he’s withdrawing from the draft and returning to the Cougars for his senior season. He’s No. 70 on ESPN’s board, so he was considered a fringe second-round pick, but shot an impressive 43.7% from deep (on 8.6 attempts) while averaging 17.7 PPG and 2.2 SPG in ’21/22.

Meanwhile, Memphis junior Lester Quinones will stay in the draft and turn pro, a source tells Steven Johnson of The Daily Memphian. Johnson writes that Quinones has impressed teams in workouts and could become a second-rounder despite being unranked by ESPN.

UCLA’s Jules Bernard will forgo his extra year of eligibility and stay in the draft, a source tells Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN (Twitter link). Bernard worked out for the Lakers earlier today, and Kyle Goon of The Southern California News Group reports (via Twitter) that the swingman had a solid performance.

Here are a handful of other early entrants withdrawing from the draft, with the NCAA’s withdrawal deadline about to strike:

Pacific Notes: James, Kuminga, Booker, Kings Draft Workout

LeBron James can sign a two-year extension this offseason and it increasingly appears he’s on board with the team’s future plans. Brian Windhorst said on ESPN’s Get Up show that James and Lakers owner Jeanie Buss are “in a good place” as the franchise tries to move on from a disastrous season (hat tip to Hoops Hype).

“From what I understand, LeBron and Jeanie are in a good place right now, despite the frustrations of this season,” Windhorst said. “LeBron believes that a few tweaks and some health can actually turn this thing around, and they can be super competitive. He is invested, wants to be there.”

We have more from the Pacific Division:

  • Jonathan Kuminga didn’t play in Game 6 against the Grizzlies but Draymond Green believes the Warriors rookie has a very bright future, as he told Marc Spears of Andscape. “He can be a perennial All-Star in this league,” Green said. “That’s up to him and the work he puts in. But he has the skills, the tools, he can see the floor, he has the opportunity if he puts the work in to be a perennial All-Star.”
  • Devin Booker finished fourth in the voting for the Most Valuable Player award but the Suns guard should be at the forefront of the conversation for next year’s award, Duane Rankin of the Arizona Republic writes. Along with his scoring and play-making, Booker has cut down on his turnovers and improved defensively.
  • The Kings brought in six draft prospects on Thursday, Jason Anderson of the Sacramento Bee tweets. That group included Will Richardson (Oregon), Jamal Bieniemy (UTEP), Lester Quinones (Memphis), Jeriah Horne (Tulsa), Kenneth Lofton Jr. (Louisiana Tech) and Efe Abogidi (Washington State).

Trevion Williams, Jalen Williams, Others Entering 2022 Draft

Purdue forward/center Trevion Williams will forgo his final year of college eligibility and sign with an agent, the school announced today in a press release. After testing the draft waters a year ago, Williams will go pro this time around.

The No. 45 prospect on ESPN’s big board, Williams came off the bench for the Boilermakers for most of 2021/22, averaging 12.0 PPG, 7.4 RPG, and 3.0 APG in 37 appearances (20.1 MPG). In his scouting report on Williams, Mike Schmitz of ESPN said the senior is one of the best passing big men in the country.

Another Williams, Santa Clara junior guard Jalen Williams, is also entering the 2022 NBA draft, according to Jonathan Givony of ESPN, who notes that Williams will maintain his college eligibility. Jalen is ranked just three spots behind Trevion on ESPN’s board, at No. 48.

Jalen Williams earned First-Team All-WCC honors after leading the conference in scoring, with 18.0 PPG on .513/.396/.809 shooting. His defensive versatility, passing feel, and shooting potential all intrigue NBA teams, says Givony.

Here are some of the other prospects recently declaring for the draft:

Expected to remain in the draft:

Testing the draft waters: