Malcolm Brogdon

Knicks Notes: Daniels, Draft Prospects, Pacers, Hardaway

Australian guard/forward Dyson Daniels, who played with G League Ignite this past season as team’s de facto point guard, is on the Knicks‘ radar with the No. 11 pick, reports Marc Berman of The New York Post. Daniels is a defensive-minded initiator who’s a strong rebounder and passer, and the Knicks have been looking for a lead guard for a long time.

I wanted to show NBA people he was a point guard,” Ignite head coach Jason Hart told The Post during Wednesday’s workouts. “So now when he gets drafted, they can put him at another position, but I think he’s a point guard because he can guard them. And he’s a natural pass-first type guy. So I played him at point guard. That’s what he looked to me. I was a point guard. And he had the same qualities point guards have. He just happened to be 6-7 [Daniels measured 6-7 ¹/₂ in shoes Wednesday].”

Hart added that Daniels brings intangible qualities and wisdom that belie his young age (he turned 19 in March).

He’s a young player with a lot of wisdom and know-how,” Hart said, per Berman. “That’s why a lot of NBA teams are intrigued by him. He knows how to do a lot of things to make a successful team. With his size, skill set and being an elite defender, he has the upside where his offense will catch up.”

Here’s more on the Knicks:

  • The Knicks are keeping tabs on several players who might land at the back-end of the lottery if they keep their first-round pick, including Daniels, Baylor forward Jeremy Sochan, Memphis center Jalen Duren, and Duke center Mark Williams, writes Steve Popper of Newsday.
  • Fred Katz of The Athletic lists 10 prospects who might be a good fit in New York, including the aforementioned players and some new ones, such as Ohio State guard Malaki Branham and Wisconsin guard Johnny Davis.
  • In a separate story for the Post, Berman speculates that the Knicks might revisit trade talks with the Pacers centered around Myles Turner and/or Malcolm Brogdon, both of whom the Knicks are reportedly interested in. Brogdon might be more considered more expendable after Indiana acquired Tyrese Haliburton in February.
  • The team never made an official announcement about it, but the Knicks have hired Tim Hardaway to serve as a scout, and he’s been interviewing draft prospects at the combine this week, sources tell Berman (Twitter link). The elder Hardaway was recently elected to the Hall of Fame.

Central Notes: Portis, Hill, Hayes, Brogdon

Bobby Portis and Grayson Allen helped the Bucks survive the absence of Khris Middleton in a Game 3 rout of the Bulls, writes Eric Nehm of The Athletic. Portis took Middleton’s spot in the starting lineup and posted 18 points and 16 rebounds as Milwaukee pulled away early. Allen hit five three-pointers on his way to a career playoff high of 22 points.

It was a timely performance for Portis, who will have to decide on a $4.565MM player option that was included in the two-year deal he signed last offseason. Portis was in demand last summer before opting to return to the team that he helped win a championship.

“I just take the shots that are given to me,” Portis said. “I’m a guy that, I don’t really try to go get the game, I let the game come to me. If somebody doubles Giannis (Antetokounmpo) or they build a wall and I’m open, then that’s the shot that you have to shoot for the possession. It’s possession-for-possession in the playoffs, half-court setting, and obviously, teams’ defenses are always going to be built around trying to stop ’34,’ so the guys around him have to be able to open the floor up and knock down shots and space the floor, so just let the game come to us.”

There’s more from the Central Division:

  • Bucks guard George Hill may miss extended time with an abdominal strain, tweets Jim Owczarski of The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel. Hill hasn’t played since being hurt on April 8, and coach Mike Budenholzer said his condition shouldn’t be considered “day to day.”
  • The Pistons believe second-year guard Killian Hayes could benefit from a summer of pick-up basketball, according to Omari Sankofa II of The Detroit Free Press. They saw improvement in Hayes’ mental approach to the game this season and want him to experience a setting where he has to win to keep playing. “You guys play pick-up. How hard do you have to play to stay on the court,” coach Dwane Casey asked reporters. “If not, you wait until next, waiting three more games. He’s never had to go through that, and that’s not a knock on him. It’s just something a young man, 18, 19-year-old had to go through. He played on club teams in Europe that practiced three times a day, structured. He hasn’t had a chance to go out and spread his wings and do some of the things he can do.”
  • Pacers guard Malcolm Brogdon, who was shut down for the season on March 18 because of back pain, is looking forward to more time playing alongside new backcourt partner Tyrese Haliburton next season, per Wheat Hotchkiss of NBA.com“He’s a great young talent, great young point guard,” Brogdon said. “Super unselfish. He’s the guy you want to play with. He’s the guy that’s going to help you win. I think the fit is great for me, for the organization. I’m excited to play with him.”

Central Notes: G. Hill, Lopez, Pacers, Cunningham

Bucks guard George Hill will remain sidelined for Game 2 of the team’s first-round series vs. Chicago on Wednesday due to an abdominal strain, tweets Jim Owczarski of The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. The injury, which Hill suffered on April 8, also kept him on the sidelines for Game 1 on Sunday.

As Owczarski relays, Bobby Portis (right calf bruise) and Jordan Nwora (back soreness) also showed up on the Bucks’ injury report for Game 2, but both are listed as probable and look like good bets to be active.

Here’s more from around the Central:

  • Bucks center Brook Lopez was limited to just 13 appearances during the regular season due to a back injury, but he’s healthy at the right time and looks like he has fresh legs, writes Steve Megargee of The Associated Press. The resurgence of Lopez, who scored 18 points in a season-high 32 minutes in Game 1 on Sunday, makes the Bucks more dangerous on both ends of the court and gives them a size advantage vs. Chicago, according to Megargee.
  • In his preview of the Pacers‘ offseason, ESPN’s Bobby Marks (Insider link) observes that the team must decide if it wants to continue rebuilding in 2022/23 or pivot back to competing for the playoffs. That decision will affect whether Indiana decides to retain or shop veterans like Malcolm Brogdon and Buddy Hield, Marks writes.
  • The three players selected immediately after Cade Cunningham in the 2021 draft look like future stars, but Cunningham’s second-half performance on the court and the leadership qualities he displayed off of the court show that the Pistons made the right call with the No. 1 pick, says Rod Beard of The Detroit News (subscriber link).

Central Notes: Brogdon, Turner, Holiday, Pistons, Cade

Malcolm Brogdon has been the subject of some trade speculation since the team acquired Tyrese Haliburton — some rival executives reportedly believe the Pacers will look to move the veteran guard this offseason.

However, speaking to reporters on Monday as part of his exit interview, Brogdon said he feels comfortable with his current team and has a “great relationship” with head coach Rick Carlisle, per Joel Lorenzi of The Indianapolis Star. In other words, while it’s possible the Pacers could trade him this offseason, it doesn’t sound like that would be his preference.

“I want to be here,” Brogdon said. “I feel like I’ve built a home here. They’ve paid me here and extended me here. And I fit. I like Carlisle, I like the coaching staff and I love my teammates. This is a player’s league, but a lot of time we don’t make the decisions. So for me it’s about getting healthy, getting better this summer and coming back ready.”

Here’s more from around the Central:

  • Entering a contract year in 2022/23, Pacers big man Myles Turner admitted on Monday that the possibility of an extension is “always in the back of my mind,” but said he’s more focused on coming back healthy next season to “remind everybody what I’m about” (link via Matthew VanTryon of The Indianapolis Star). Turner didn’t play after January 14 due to a foot injury.
  • Jrue Holiday, whose contract calls for a $306K bonus if he plays in at least 67 games and averages at least 3.15 rebounds per game, logged just eight seconds of game time on Sunday in his 67th appearance of the season to ensure he received that bonus, as ESPN’s Bobby Marks tweets. The Bucks guard averaged 4.5 RPG this season.
  • In an Insider-only story for ESPN.com, Marks takes an in-depth look at some of the most important roster decisions facing the Pistons this offseason, including Marvin Bagley III‘s free agency and a handful of team options.
  • No. 1 overall pick Cade Cunningham, who averaged 21.0 PPG, 6.4 APG, and 5.8 RPG on 45.7% shooting in 21 games after the All-Star break, may have gotten hot too late to win the Rookie of the Year award, but his strong second-half performance is a reminder that he’s a player the Pistons can build around going forward, writes Vincent Goodwill of Yahoo Sports.

Lakers Rumors: Nurse, Davis, LeBron, Westbrook, Carmelo

Once the Lakers officially dismiss head coach Frank Vogel, Raptors head coach Nick Nurse is expected to be one of the team’s top targets, reports Shams Charania of The Athletic. The Lakers are hoping that Nurse is an option, according to Charania, who acknowledges that it’s unclear whether Nurse “will be attainable or whether he would have interest.”

In order to even talk to Nurse, the Lakers would have to get permission from the Raptors, since the former Coach of the Year remains under contract in Toronto for two more years. Nurse would then have to be interested in leaving a stable, well-run organization for one that was mired in dysfunction this season. And the Lakers would likely have to be willing to give up substantial draft compensation to acquire Nurse from the Raptors.

Given all of those obstacles, I’d be shocked if Nurse emerged as a realistic candidate for the Lakers’ job, but it doesn’t hurt to ask. As one Eastern Conference executive observed to Sean Deveney of Heavy.com, Nurse is represented by Andy Miller at Klutch Sports, the same agency that reps LeBron James and Anthony Davis.

“I would expect the Lakers to at least ask about Nick Nurse,” the executive told Deveney. “… He got the big contract with the Raptors and he is secure there. They’re not going to let him go. But it makes him look better and Klutch look better if they are asking for him, right? So yeah, I would not be surprised to see the Lakers ask about him but more as a favor to Klutch. Maybe they won’t because he is so far out of reach. But, you scratch my back, I’ll scratch yours, that is how things work.”

Here’s more on the Lakers:

  • Anthony Davis said on Sunday that he still believes a roster built around him and LeBron James can contend for a title moving forward, as Dave McMenamin of ESPN writes. “I think us two can. We’ve shown that we can,” Davis said.
  • While James and Davis are widely expected to remain in Los Angeles going forward, Russell Westbrook‘s future is cloudier. According to Charania, rival executives believe the Pacers will be open to discussing trades involving Malcolm Brogdon and Buddy Hield and could emerge as a Westbrook suitor, which is something Marc Stein suggested over the weekend. While Brogdon and Hield would be good fits on the Lakers’ roster, L.A. would likely have to attach sweeteners to Westbrook to realistically make any deal with Indiana.
  • James told reporters today that an MRI on his left ankle showed that he won’t require surgery or any injections, but he’ll have to stay off of it for the next four-to-six weeks (Twitter link via Mark Medina of NBA.com). LeBron also said that he and the Lakers could have extension discussions later this offseason once CBA rules allow for it (Twitter link via McMenamin). James will become extension-eligible in August.
  • Asked about potential roster moves and the possibility of playing with Westbrook next season, James said he’ll defer to the front office. I’m not here to make decisions for the front office and that nature,” he said (Twitter links). “But I loved being teammates with Russ.”
  • Steve Bulpett of Heavy.com spoke to multiple league sources about the Lakers’ disappointing season and the perception that head coach Frank Vogel was being undermined. “On a regular basis, (Kurt) Rambis would get on Vogel in front of staff and players — in practices, in the hallway where everybody can see it. He wasn’t taking it behind closed doors and laying it out,” one source said. “And what position does Rambis have? What’s his title? His title is friend of Jeanie Buss. Trust me, Frank Vogel would have been happy to have been fired from that mess.”
  • Addressing Vogel’s firing, Bill Oram of The Athletic contends that the way the news leaked – before the team formally informed Vogel – should be a warning sign for potential replacements.
  • Asked about his priorities in free agency this offseason, Carmelo Anthony said he’d like to win a championship, but also wants to be somewhere he’ll be happy. “If I gotta be unhappy to try to go fight and win a championship, I don’t want that. I don’t want that unhappiness,” he said, per McMenamin (Twitter link). “… I think at this point in my carer, it’s about just being happy and being able to wake up and come to work every day with a good attitude. Being positive.”

Pacers Rumors: Carlisle, Brunson, Brogdon, Westbrook, Hield, Turner

Pacers head coach Rick Carlisle appears committed to his role for the future, Marc Stein writes at Substack. As we recently relayed, Carlisle denied that he’s interested in switching to a front office role, addressing the rumors in a brief statement.

“I just want to be completely clear on this. I don’t know what the assumptions are that people are making about this, why this would be the case,” Carlisle said, according to Stein. “When I came here, we had hoped to have a really good season this year. We had some struggles early, and it morphed into a change in direction, but that’s OK. It has not quelled my enthusiasm for being back with the Indiana Pacers or taking on this challenge one single bit.”

The Pacers are viewed as a team that may pursue Mavericks guard Jalen Brunson in free agency this summer, Stein reports. Brunson played under Carlisle for three years in Dallas. Signing the 25-year-old could motivate Carlisle further, though Detroit and New York are also expected to bid for his services.

There’s more out of Indiana today:

  • The Pacers have left several rival teams with the impression that they’ll attempt to trade Malcolm Brogdon this offseason, Stein relays. Trading Brogdon would open a spot for Brunson, who could pair with Tyrese Haliburton in the backcourt.
  • If the team doesn’t sign Brunson, it could also examine a possible Russell Westbrook trade with the Lakers, Stein notes. A deal for Westbrook would likely include Buddy Hield, whom the Lakers coveted before trading for Westbrook last offseason. It could also include Brogdon and draft compensation from the Lakers. Indiana acquired Hield in a deal with Sacramento earlier this season.
  • One player the Pacers do want to keep is Myles Turner, according to Stein. Turner saw his name surface in trade rumors this season. He averaged 12.9 points, 7.1 rebounds and 2.8 blocks in 29.4 minutes per game, shooting 51% from the floor. He’s under contract for next season at $18MM.

Central Notes: Turner, Pacers, Stephenson, Holiday, Beilein

Considered a prime trade candidate earlier in the season, Pacers center Myles Turner ultimately stayed put after he injured his foot and Indiana opted to move Domantas Sabonis instead. Appearing on the HoopsHype podcast with Michael Scotto, Scott Agness of Fieldhouse Files said he believes Indiana should either trade or extend Turner this offseason rather than having him enter 2022/23 on an expiring contract with a retooling team.

Agness believes the Pacers are more likely to bring back Turner than to move him, but notes that the Mavericks would be one team of interest to Turner if he’s shopped, since he was born and raised in the Dallas area. Scotto spoke to four NBA executives who believe the Pacers could get at least a protected first-round pick for Turner if he’s traded this offseason.

Within the same podcast, Agness acknowledged that the Pacers could gauge the trade market for Malcolm Brogdon and Buddy Hield, but he doesn’t view either player as a lock to be dealt. Agness also expressed skepticism that Indiana will be able to re-sign big man Jalen Smith, since he expects other teams to exceed a $4.67MM starting salary, which is the most the Pacers can offer.

Here’s more from around the Central:

  • Veteran wing Lance Stephenson is interested in re-signing with the Pacers this offseason, regardless of whether the team attempts to reload for another playoff push or leans further into rebuilding mode, according to Scotto. Stephenson would like to spend the rest of his career in Indiana, Scotto adds.
  • Having logged 2,075 minutes this season, Jrue Holiday has earned a $306K bonus in his contract with the Bucks, tweets ESPN’s Bobby Marks. Holiday is also on track to receive a bonus based on his games played and rebounds per game, Marks adds (via Twitter).
  • John Beilein‘s brief head coaching stint in Cleveland was a disaster, but he has embraced a new role out of the spotlight with the Pistons, as Omari Sankofa II of The Detroit Free Press details. Detroit’s senior advisor of player development, Beilein is a “meticulous note-taker,” Sankofa writes. “There’s some guys that, with one approach, shoot 45%,” Beilein said. “With another approach, shoot 20%. I keep this. Or left-hand dribble versus right-hand dribble, they shoot drastically different percentages. I’m keeping that stuff that they probably don’t have in the NBA databook, whether a guy shoots a hang dribble or a quick dribble. That’s not in the computer, but I can compute it.”

Pacers Notes: Sykes, Brogdon, Stephenson, Turner, McConnell, Warren

Pacers guard Keifer Sykes, a rookie at age 28, has taken a remarkable path to the NBA, according to James Boyd of The Indianapolis Star. It’s an in-depth look at Sykes’ journey — from the harrowing gun violence of his youth in Chicago’s South Side, to starring for the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, several stops overseas and much, much more.

Sykes’ mother, Lisa, was thrilled when she learned that his contract had been guaranteed for the remainder of the season.

My heart was just filled with so much joy when he got what he wanted, and that’s to play in the NBA for his dream,” Lisa Sykes said. “When I see him play against his favorite people, seeing him playing against Chris Paul and he went to Chris Paul’s camp, it’s like it’s (full) circle.”

It’s a fascinating story and I recommend checking out the full article.

Here’s more from Indiana:

  • Head coach Rick Carlisle provided injury updates on several players Thursday, including Malcolm Brogdon, who suffered a concussion during Tuesday’s 127-124 loss to Cleveland. Brogdon was struck by an errant elbow from Evan Mobley and will be sidelined for the back-to-back road games this weekend against the Spurs and Hawks, Boyd of The Indianapolis Star tweets.
  • Lance Stephenson aggravated his left ankle sprain during Thursday’s practice and had to leave the court early, Carlisle said. He’s unsure whether Stephenson will be able to play in the upcoming games this weekend, per Boyd (Twitter link). Stephenson has missed four of the team’s last six games, including two straight.
  • Myles Turner and T.J. McConnell are making progress from their foot and wrist injuries, respectively. Carlisle said Turner was able to do 30 minutes of non-contact work during Thursday’s practice and has been gradually ramping up activity, but there’s still no timeline on his return (Twitter link via Boyd). Carlisle called McConnell week-to-week. Given Indiana’s place in the standings (22-45, fifth-worst in the NBA) and the fact that both players are under contract through at least next season, it wouldn’t be surprising if they’re held out for the remainder of the season.
  • In one of the more bizarre and unfortunate storylines of the 2021/22 season, T.J. Warren continues to be sidelined with a stress fracture in his left foot. He hasn’t played at all this season after playing just four games last season, originally suffering the injury in December of 2020. Carlisle said there was “no update on T.J Warren” when asked about his status by James Boyd of the Indianapolis Star (via Twitter). Warren will be an unrestricted free agent this summer.

And-Ones: Brantley, NBA Awards, Seattle, Brogdon

Former NBA player Jarrell Brantley has been sued by Russia’s UNICS Kazan after he left the country, Ian Begley on SNY.tv tweets. The Russian club has sued Brantley for $250K after he returned to the U.S. with his wife and infant daughter. The forward will pursue G League opportunities but he could be blocked from playing in that league because he requires permission from Kazan. Brantley played 37 games with the Jazz from 2019-21.

We have more from around the basketball world:

  • It’s a coin flip between Joel Embiid and Nikola Jokic in the race for the NBA’s Most Valuable Player award, Zach Harper of The Athletic opines. Ja Morant has moved up to the third spot with his offensive outbursts in recent weeks. Harper updates his rankings on numerous postseason awards in his column.
  • Seattle mayor Bruce Harrell is confident the NBA will return to the city, but the league denied that any expansion plan is in the works, Kurt Helin of NBC Sports writes. “The odds are high,” Harrell said. “We’re very intentional about it. I chase down rumors and I chase down actual people in a position to make that happen. I feel good about our opportunity.” A league spokesman told NBC Sports that there’s “no truth” to a report that expansion is on the front burner this offseason.
  • Pacers guard Malcolm Brogdon has some interest in playing for the Polish national team and the country’s basketball federation will try to make it a reality, according to a Eurohoops.net report. Brogdon’s connection to Poland comes from his wife, who has Polish roots and relatives who live in the country.

And-Ones: Brown, Brogdon, Biyombo, Udoka, Snyder, Russia, Smith

Jaylen Brown, Malcolm Brogdon and Bismack Biyombo have been re-elected as VPs on the National Basketball Players Association’s Executive Committee, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski tweets. They’ll serve new three-year terms, according to the players’ union.

We have more from around the basketball world:

  • The Celtics’ Ime Udoka and Jazz‘s Quin Snyder were named Coaches of the Month for February, NBA Communications tweets. Boston had a 9-2 record during the month, while Utah went 8-1.
  • In the aftermath of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the NBA has suspended all activities in Russia, Mark J. Burns of the Sports Business Journal tweets. According to Burns’ source, that includes activities related to content distribution such as digital and broadcast. There is no timeline on when business activities will resume in Russia.
  • Forward Roscoe Smith, who has appeared in 149 G League games, has signed in Palestine with Orthodoxi Beit Jala, agent Derek James of Global Pipeline Agency told JD Shaw of Hoops Rumors (Twitter link).