Malachi Richardson

Woj’s Latest: Cavaliers, Clippers, Kings, Jazz

In his latest piece for ESPN.com, Adrian Wojnarowski goes into extensive detail on the deadline deals completed last week by the Cavaliers, and offers some fascinating tidbits on how those trades got done, and one potential blockbuster that didn’t get done. Let’s dive in and round up the highlights…

  • Before making his series of trades, Cavaliers GM Koby Altman got an elusive face-to-face sitdown with LeBron James to let his star player know what he was working on. Altman later met with LeBron again to tell him that the trades for Jordan Clarkson, Larry Nance, George Hill, and Rodney Hood were complete, and to ask for his blessing on the deal that sent Dwyane Wade to Miami, says Wojnarowski.
  • Altman had received ownership approval to trade Jae Crowder, Channing Frye, Iman Shumpert, and the Cavs’ own 2018 first-round pick to the Clippers for DeAndre Jordan, according to Wojnarowski. Los Angeles was on board with the deal, but wanted to find a third team to take Shumpert and to give the Clips a center, since they didn’t want another shooting guard. Altman and Clippers GM Michael Winger weren’t able to find that third team, and since L.A. was unwilling to take on Shumpert (or Tristan Thompson or J.R. Smith) and the Cavs had some reservations about extending Jordan’s contract in the offseason, the deal ultimately fell through.
  • The three-way trade between the Cavaliers, Kings, and Jazz nearly fell apart on deadline day when Sacramento insisted that Georgios Papagiannis be included in the deal. According to Woj, Cleveland and Utah were “adamant” that Papagiannis had never been discussed, but Kings assistant GM Brandon Williams insists that his notes confirm that either Papagiannis or Malachi Richardson would be included.
  • As an aside, Wojnarowski writes that Williams was handling negotiations because GM Vlade Divac “seldom gets on the phone for the trade-building parts,” even though any Kings trade requires his approval, along with the approval of owner Vivek Ranadive.
  • The Cavaliers were very much against Papagiannis’ inclusion in the trade, since taking on his $2.3MM cap hit would have cost the club significantly more than that in tax payments. Utah also had no interest in acquiring the former lottery pick, with Wojnarowski suggesting that Jazz GM Dennis Lindsey was “livid” about the insertion of Papagiannis and was ready to call off the trade. As for the Kings, they were hoping to move 2016’s 13th overall pick to avoid the embarrassment of waiving him themselves, says Woj.
  • Eventually, Altman was able to work out a solution and talked Lindsey into it, per Wojnarowski. Papagiannis’ rest-of-season salary for this year and his guaranteed salary for 2018/19 totaled $3.2MM, and the Cavaliers were willing to pay that amount to Sacramento, but Cleveland was limited to sending out $2.1MM for the rest of this league year. Altman convinced the Jazz to send the Kings the remaining $1.1MM, with Lindsey getting a little something out of the deal: the ability to swap 2024 second-round picks with the Cavs. The Kings, having been compensated for Papagiannis’ remaining salary, simply waived him rather than insisting he be a part of the trade.

NBA G League Assignments/Recalls: 2/12/18

Here are Monday’s G League assignments and recalls from around the NBA:

  • The Timberwolves have recalled rookie center Justin Patton from the G League, according to the team (Twitter link). Patton has yet to make his NBA debut, but looked good for the Iowa Wolves on Sunday, scoring a team-high 21 points.
  • Newly-acquired Raptors shooting guard Malachi Richardson has been assigned to the G League, the team announced today (via Twitter). Richardson doesn’t figure to get much run for a Toronto team with a deep bench, but he should have a chance to play major minutes for the Raptors 905 against Maine on Monday night.
  • The Bulls assigned a trio of players to the G League today, according to the club (Twitter link). Kris Dunn, Cristiano Felicio, and Noah Vonleh were sent to the Windy City Bulls for practice and will be recalled after that, the team announced.
  • Patrick McCaw, who has been spending time in the G League to get more minutes, was recalled by the Warriors today, the team confirmed in a press release. The Santa Cruz Warriors scored 131 points on Sunday, but McCaw had just six of them, on 2-of-11 shooting.

Kings, Raptors Swap Malachi Richardson, Bruno Caboclo

9:29pm: The Kings have officially acquired Caboclo for Richardson, the team announced in a press release.

4:51pm: The Kings have changed course and will now keep Caboclo on their roster, tweets Sean Cunningham of ABC 10 Sacramento. The Kings are waiving Georgios Papagiannis to clear the roster spot necessary for their other trade.

1:04pm: The Kings plan to release Caboclo once the trade is complete, tweets Jason Jones of The Sacramento Bee.

Sacramento will still owe him the rest of his $2.45MM salary for this season, but the Kings need to open a roster spot to complete a deal with Cleveland and Utah that brings in Iman Shumpert and Joe Johnson while sending out George Hill. Sacramento also gets rid of the nearly $1.6MM Richardson is owed next season, along with future options on his rookie contract.

12:32pm: The Raptors and Kings are finalizing a deal to swap Bruno Caboclo for Malachi Richardson, tweets Shams Charania of Yahoo Sports.

A first-round pick in 2016, Richardson has been somewhat of a disappointment in Sacramento after being acquired in a draft-night trade. He has played just 47 games in a season and a half and is averaging 3.5 points while shooting .365 from the field and .299 from 3-point range.

Toronto also had high hopes for Caboclo when it made him the 20th pick in the 2014 draft, but he has spent almost his entire career in the G League. He has played just 25 games at the NBA level, including two this season.

The Raptors save close $1MM in the deal, which was made to provide more flexibility in the buyout market, tweets Josh Lewenberg of TSN.

Kyler’s Latest: G. Hill, Kings, Mavs, Randle, Parker

In the wake of this week’s massive Blake Griffin trade, Steve Kyler of Basketball Insiders assessed the trade market in an effort to determine which teams may be the next to make moves. We covered some of Kyler’s Clippers-related items on Tuesday, and a Rodney Hood/Stanley Johnson note from his article was reported elsewhere, but there are plenty more tidbits worth rounding up. Let’s dive in…

  • The rumored deal involving George Hill between the Cavaliers and Kings isn’t dead yet, but both teams are exploring the market in search of trades they might like more, per Kyler. The two teams could revisit a Hill swap on or before February 8.
  • The Kings still appear willing to move a young player or two for a first-round pick, with Skal Labissiere and Malachi Richardson among those trade candidates, Kyler writes.
  • The Mavericks‘ preferred target is Julius Randle, but they may start to seriously consider Labissiere if the Lakers don’t engage in Randle talks, says Kyler. Still, Mavs sources tell Kyler that they place a lot of value on first-round picks, so it sounds like they’ll be reluctant to move one.
  • Bucks sources have “aggressively downplayed” the idea that the team will trade forward Jabari Parker, who is returning this week from an ACL injury. However, the team acknowledges that its cap situation could complicate contract talks with the former No. 2 overall pick this offseason. Bucks ownership appears willing to commit to Parker if management wants to lock him up, according to Kyler, who notes that the forward would be a prime trade chip if Milwaukee wants to make a splash for a big-name center.

Kings Make Skal Labissiere, Malachi Richardson Available

The Kings have made Skal Labissiere and Malachi Richardson available for a possible trade, Jason Jones of the Sacramento Bee writes. Jones cites the possibly looming George Hill trade as the driving factor behind their looking to unload a young player.

If the Kings are to take on Iman Shumpert and Channing Frye from the Cavaliers as has been reported (in addition to draft compensation), they would need to first clear up a roster spot.

Last season the Kings addressed a similar scenario by waiving Matt Barnes ahead of the DeMarcus Cousins trade in which they netted one additional player. This time around, however, the club could potentially benefit more from parlaying one of their prospects into something valuable than just outright releasing somebody.

While Richardson has been buried behind players like Bogdan Bogdanovic and Buddy Hield in the depth chart, Labissiere showed considerable promise following the Cousins deal that went down part-way through his rookie season.

Labissiere, still just 21 years old, is averaging 8.0 points and 4.4 rebounds per game in 2017/18 but posted 10.8 points and 6.0 rebounds in 22.4 minutes per game after the All-Star break in 2016/17 (sans Cousins).

NBA G League Assignments/Recalls: 1/14/18

Here are the G League moves from around the league today:

NBA G League Assignments/Recalls: 1/10/18

Here are Wednesday’s G League assignments and recalls from around the NBA:

  • The Magic assigned center Khem Birch to their Lakeland affiliate, the team announced in a tweet. The rookie has played seven games for Orlando, averaging three minutes per night.
  • The Kings assigned Georgios Papagiannis and Malachi Richardson to their affiliate in Reno, tweets Jason Jones of the Sacramento Bee.

Kings Notes: Sampson, Richardson, Randolph, Hill

The Kings would like to give more playing time to small forward JaKarr Sampson, but they are limited by his two-way contract, writes Jason Jones of The Sacramento Bee. Sampson can’t spend more than 45 days in the NBA and must be signed to a regular contract if he exceeds that number. To do that, the team would have to open a roster spot and part with one of its 15 guaranteed contracts.

Sampson has played just six games in Sacramento, but has impressed the coaches with his defensive abilities. He has the size to guard wing players who otherwise give the Kings problems. He is also averaging 5.0 points and 5.0 rebounds in 17 minutes per night. He has previous NBA experience with the Sixers and Nuggets, but was out of the league last season.

There’s more news from Sacramento:
  • Personnel moves have cut into the opportunities for second-year shooting guard Malachi Richardson, Jones adds in the same story. Last year’s trade for Buddy Hield and the addition of Bogdan Bogdanovic have pushed Richardson down in the rotation. He faces competition at small forward from Garrett Temple, Vince Carter and rookie Justin Jackson. Richardson has gotten into just 13 games so far this season.
  • Free agent addition Zach Randolph considers himself a “dinosaur” because of the way he plays, but he has become the team’s best player, Jones states in a separate story. In the first season of a two-year, $24MM contract, the 36-year-old is averaging 15.2 points and 7.0 rebounds in 26 games. That’s despite a low-post game that seems best suited to another era. “Basketball is basketball; it’ll all come around,” Randolph said. “…You’ve still got to play in that paint; you’ve still got guys rolling. When you need a bucket, you go to the post. It comes back around.” Randolph adds that he hasn’t considered retirement and believes he can play several more seasons.
  • After a rough start in Sacramento, fellow offseason signee George Hill has stepped up his game, Jones notes in the same story. Hill is shooting better than 53% in his last nine games and he provides a veteran presence to ease the pressure on rookies De’Aaron Fox and Frank Mason.

NBA G League Assignments/Recalls: 12/9/17

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

Kings Notes: Hill, Randolph, G League, Draft

George Hill becomes eligible to be traded in six days, and Jason Jones of the Sacramento Bee expects rumors involving the Kings point guard to start emerging soon. Like most players who signed contracts over the offseason, Hill can be traded beginning December 15. He probably envisioned a larger role when he inked a three-year, $57MM deal with Sacramento, as he is getting just 25.5 minutes per night, even though he has started all 23 games that he has played.

Hill’s playing time might diminish even further if he stays with the Kings. First-round pick De’Aaron Fox is Sacramento’s point guard of the future and the organization views him as a developing star. Second-round pick and fellow point guard Frank Mason has been a pleasant surprise, leaving Hill to play off the ball more often. His numbers are down across the board after averaging 16.9 points for the Jazz next season, and Jones suggests a trade would be best for both Hill and the Kings.

There’s more out of Sacramento:

  • Zach Randolph, another veteran offseason free agent addition, has developed into the Kings’ most consistent player, Jones writes in the same piece. Coach Dave Joerger doesn’t believe in using young players just for development purposes, so Randolph has pushed rookie forward Justin Jackson and second-year forward Skal Labissiere to the bench. Joerger’s policy is to reward production with playing time, and Randolph has earned his minutes by averaging 15.0 points and 6.8 rebounds per night.
  • The Kings made the right decision to send Jackson, Labissiere and Malachi Richardson to the G League this week, Jones contends in a separate story. Sacramento doesn’t have enough playing time to devote to the nine first- or second-year players on its roster. Fox and Mason are joined by rookie Bogdan Bogdanovic in the rotation, and Joerger is reluctant to use too many young players at the same time. “It’s just generally not great practice for us if we put at least four young guys on the floor together,” he said. “It can get ugly.”
  • The Kings’ focus has changed since adding free agents Hill, Randolph and Vince Carter over the summer, according to Tony Jones of The Salt Lake Tribune. Those signings were made by Scott Perry, who has since left the organization to become GM of the Knicks. The new regime reportedly told its three free agent additions and fellow veteran Garrett Temple that the emphasis is now on acquiring a top five pick in next year’s draft rather than contending for the playoffs.
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