Malik Beasley

Nuggets Notes: Bol, Malone, Rotation, Porter, Craig, Murray

The Nuggets have recalled rookie center Bol Bol from the G League but they’re not burning any of the 45 days he’s allotted to spend in the NBA on his two-way contract, according to Mike Singer of the Denver Post.

Bol is expected to remain with the Nuggets for a couple of weeks but won’t practice or play before being sent back down to the Windy City Bulls. He’ll be listed as out due to “injury management” for his surgically repaired left foot, Singer adds. Bol has averaged 11.5 PPG, 6.5 RPG and 2.3 BPG in less than 17 MPG with Windy City.

We have more on the Nuggets:

  • The league has instituted coach’s challenges this season but like many of the men who patrol the sidelines, Michael Malone likes to save his challenge for crunch time, Eric Spyropoulos of the team’s website notes. “As you see it kind of play out, most coaches like to keep it (the challenge) in their pocket for late game situations. The only time I can see using it early is if you’re trying to protect a great player (from foul trouble),” Malone said.
  • The Nuggets have plenty of depth, which has created a pleasant dilemma for Malone on a game-by-game basis, Nick Kosmider of The Athletic points out. Mason Plumlee, Monte Morris and Jerami Grant have defined reserve roles but Torrey Craig, Juancho Hernangomez, Michael Porter Jr. and Malik Beasley have seen major fluctuations in playing time. “It’s not easy from a player or coach’s standpoint,” Plumlee said. “But I’ll say guys have handled it as well as any team I’ve been on.”
  • Porter has appeared in 10 games, averaging 3.8 PPG in 9.0 MPG, and Malone hopes to expand his role, according to John Hollinger of The Athletic“I have to find ways to play him this year,” Malone said. “This cannot be a wasted year for him.”
  • Craig has lost playing time but he’s not creating any problems in the locker room, Singer relays in a separate story“We all get along, we’re all happy for each other when each other have success,” he said. “I’m not one to sit here and pout when my teammates are doing good. If they’re doing good and we’re winning, I’m happy.”
  • Jamal Murray will play for Team Canada next summer, Michael Grange of Sportsnet Canada reports. Canada will host an Olympic qualifying tournament in Victoria, B.C. in late June, and then head to Tokyo if the team snags one of the six remaining spots in the 12-team Olympic tournament.

Northwest Notes: Beasley, Collins, Jazz, Nuggets

The Nuggets made a “very aggressive” attempt to lock up Malik Beasley to a rookie scale extension before last week’s deadline, a league source tells Mike Singer of The Denver Post. However, the two sides couldn’t strike a deal, and Beasley remains on track for restricted free agency in 2020, an outcome that doesn’t bother him.

“I feel like I have no pressure at all,” the Nuggets guard said of his contract year. “I’ve had pressure my whole life, so this is nothing. This is basketball, so it’s going to be fun. I put in a lot of work, so it’s going to be easy.”

In some instances, extension discussions between a team and a player can get contentious, particularly if no agreement is reached during the preseason. As Singer writes though, Beasley doesn’t sound like someone who will hold a grudge against the Nuggets when contract negotiations resume next summer: “It was great talks from both parties and just couldn’t figure something out. It doesn’t hurt my relationship with them, it doesn’t hurt anything on the court.”

Here’s more from around the Northwest:

  • Although Zach Collins underwent an MRI on his injured shoulder earlier this week, the Trail Blazers have yet to reveal the results or announce a timeline for his return to action, writes Casey Holdahl of Blazers.com. The recovery process from a dislocated shoulder is generally measured in weeks rather than days, so it’s probably safe to assume Collins will be out for a little while.
  • Mike Conley and Bojan Bogdanovic are starting to show why the Jazz brought them in this summer to boost the team’s offense. Aaron Falk of UtahJazz.com examines Conley’s breakout game vs. the Clippers on Wednesday, while Tony Jones of The Athletic looks at how Bogdanovic is taking some pressure off Donovan Mitchell.
  • Because the Nuggets don’t have a G League affiliate of their own, their two-way players – PJ Dozier and Bol Bol – will play for the Windy City Bulls, Chicago’s NBAGL affiliate, as Adam Johnson of 2 Ways & 10 Days tweets. It’s not clear whether more than one G League team expressed interest in taking on Dozier and Bol, but in that scenario, Denver would have had the opportunity to choose where to send them.

Northwest Notes: Beasley, Hernangomez, Teague, Hall

Prior to Monday’s rookie scale contract extension deadline, the Nuggets aggressively pursued deals for Malik Beasley and Juan Hernangomez, according to Shams Charania of The Athletic (Twitter link). However, while all sides made an effort in those discussions, neither Beasley nor Hernangomez signed a new contract on Monday.

As we noted this afternoon in our recap of this year’s rookie scale extension activity, Beasley and Hernangomez are two of the extension-eligible players who are now on track for restricted free agency next summer. It will be particularly interesting to see how things play out for Beasley, who reportedly turned down a three-year, $30MM offer from the Nuggets earlier in the offseason. If he repeats or improves upon last year’s numbers, he could be one of the best young players available on the 2020 market.

Here’s more from around the Northwest:

  • Timberwolves point guard Jeff Teague, who was bothered by a nagging left ankle injury for much of last season, underwent a procedure in April to address that injury. Asked whether he feels fully healthy heading into the season, Teague offered the following assessment, per Chris Hine of The Star Tribune: “I feel OK. I don’t think I’ll ever be 100 percent, but I feel OK.”
  • Pacers big man Domantas Sabonis isn’t going anywhere for the time being after signing a new four-year extension, but Darren Wolfson of SKOR North notes (via Twitter) that the Timberwolves talked to Indiana about Sabonis in June. It’s unclear if the Wolves attempted to re-engage last week when the Pacers briefly explored the market for Sabonis.
  • After spending his first professional season as a “draft-and-stash” prospect, 2018 second-rounder Devon Hall may have an opportunity to contribute to the Thunder in 2019/20. Maddie Lee of The Oklahoman takes a closer look at what’s on tap this season for Hall, one of the club’s two-way players.

Nuggets Notes: Free Agents, Beasley, Murray

The Nuggets are about to find out whether a roster full of players who deserve regular minutes is really a good problem to have, writes Nick Kosmider of The Athletic. That’s how coach Michael Malone has been framing the situation, but keeping everyone happy on one of the league’s deepest teams could be a season-long challenge. Coming off a 54-win season, Denver traded for Jerami Grant this summer and will have to incorporate 2018 lottery pick Michael Porter Jr.

Playing time will be important with potentially half the roster heading into a contract year. Paul Millsap and Mason Plumlee both have expiring deals, and Grant could become an unrestricted free agent as well if he declines a $9.3MM option for 2020/21. Juan Hernangomez and Malik Beasley are both eligible for rookie scale extensions, while Monte Morris and Jarred Vanderbilt will be eligible for extensions next summer. Torrey Craig is headed for restricted free agency.

“Sacrifice is the biggest word in our locker room,” Morris said. “We’re so deep that you have to be able to know sometimes that it ain’t gonna be your night. It’s knowing that you can be the so-called hero with six points on any given night.”

There’s more out of Denver:

  • The team has a little more than a week to reach an extension with Beasley before facing the prospect of matching a very expensive offer sheet next summer, Kosmider notes in a separate story. Beasley already rejected a three-year, $30MM offer and recently hired Rich Paul of Klutch Sports as his new representative. The fourth-year shooting guard has a chance to cash in if he can repeat last year’s outbreak, which saw him average 15.9 PPG while shooting 55% from the floor and 50% from 3-point range. “I don’t think you can look at an 82-game season as a fluke,” Malone said. “… He built up to that. He worked toward that and when the opportunity presented itself, he took advantage of it.”
  • It was only a matter time of time before Jamal Murray signed a maximum-salary contract, so Denver determined it made sense to do it sooner rather than later, writes Mike Singer of The Denver Post. With championship hopes this season, the Nuggets wanted to resolve Murray’s contract situation early so he could focus on basketball.
  • Denver isn’t likely to make a trade early in the season, Singer adds in the same piece. Barton, Hernangomez and Gary Harris all missed time with injuries last year, so that depth could be needed until opportunities emerge closer to February’s trade deadline.

Nuggets, Malik Beasley Engaged In Extension Talks

The Nuggets are engaged in talks with Malik Beasley and his representatives – including agent Rich Paul of Klutch Sports – about a potential contract extension, a league source tells Mike Singer of The Denver Post.

As a former first-round pick entering the fourth and final year of his rookie deal, Beasley is eligible to sign an extension up until October 21, the day before the regular season begins. If he and the Nuggets don’t work something out by then, he’ll be eligible for restricted free agency during the summer of 2020.

Bobby Marks of ESPN reported last week that Beasley turned down a three-year, $30MM extension offer from the Nuggets, and a source confirms to Singer than the team did make an offer in that range. However, according to ESPN’s report, Beasley declined that offer before changing agents, so it’s not clear where negotiations stand with Paul and Klutch Sports.

After playing limited minutes in his first two NBA seasons, Beasley emerged as one of the Nuggets’ most effective bench players in 2018/19, averaging 11.3 PPG on .474/.402/.848 shooting in 81 games (23.2 MPG). He’s also still just 22 years old and could continue to improve — Singer speculates that a strong 2019/20 could increase Beasley’s value to $14-16MM per year.

Gary Harris, Will Barton, and Michael Porter all missed significant time last season, so if they’re all healthy to start the ’19/20 season, it will be interesting to see how Beasley’s role is affected. The Nuggets have a deep, talented rotation when everyone is healthy, but the former Florida State standout showed last season that he deserves a regular role.

In addition to Beasley, Juan Hernangomez is another extension-eligible player who is in the Nuggets’ long-term plans, Singer notes.

Malik Beasley Declined Three-Year, $30MM Extension Offer

Before his recent agent change, shooting guard Malik Beasley turned down a three-year, $30MM contract extension offer from the Nuggets, sources tell Bobby Marks of ESPN.com (Insider link). Beasley, who is entering the final year of his rookie scale contract, is eligible to sign a new deal up until October 21.

After playing limited minutes in his first two NBA seasons, Beasley emerged as one of the Nuggets’ most effective bench players in 2018/19, averaging 11.3 PPG on .474/.402/.848 shooting in 81 games (23.2 MPG). The former Florida State standout is still just 22 years old, so it’s possible he’ll take another step forward this season, which would line up for a nice payday in restricted free agency in 2020.

Pointing to Beasley’s up-and-down performance in the playoffs, Marks suggests that a three-year, $30MM contract – which is approximately equivalent to a mid-level deal – is a fair price. However, with Rich Paul and Klutch Sports now representing him, the former first-round pick figures to be seeking a more lucrative offer.

The four-year, $53MM contract signed in 2018 by Nuggets swingman Will Barton could be a relevant point of reference in negotiations, as Marks observes. Beasley outplayed Barton last season, and if he does so again in 2019/20, he’d have a strong case to top his teammate’s deal.

With Paul Millsap, Mason Plumlee, and a handful of other players on expiring contracts this season, the Nuggets currently only have about $93MM in guaranteed money on their cap for 2020/21, so they can afford to lock up Beasley if the two sides find common ground.

Nuggets Notes: Bol, Beasley, Porter, Small Forward

Nuggets rookie Bol Bol told reporters at Media Day that he expects to be cleared for five-on-five drills sometime in late October or November, relays Kyle Fredrickson of The Denver Post. Bol is still recovering from a season-ending foot injury he suffered last year at Oregon. He signed a two-way deal with Denver after being drafted with the 44th pick, but hasn’t been medically cleared to start playing again.

Bol said the team has been “taking it slow” regarding his rehabilitation and no plan has been set for when he might be able to return. He may spend the entire season in the G League, but because the Nuggets don’t have a direct affiliate, his playing time will be determined by another organization.

“It’s kind of like a check-step process,” Bol said of his recovery. “Month by month, you check in to see how I am doing. But I think in the next month or two I’ll be able to (play) five-on-five.”

There’s more from Media Day in Denver:

  • With three weeks left before the deadline for a rookie scale extension, Malik Beasley is focusing on his game and letting newly hired agent Rich Paul take care of negotiations, tweets Nick Kosmider of The Athletic. Beasley, who will be a restricted free agent next summer if no deal is reached, chose Klutch Sports as his representative last week.
  • Michael Porter Jr. remains a mystery after sitting out his rookie year and most of his lone college season with back issues, but he’s ready to start proving he was worth a lottery pick, tweets Chris Dempsey of Altitude Sports. Porter said it was tough to skip Summer League again, but he has been focused on preparing for the season. “My time will come eventually,” Porter said. “So I’ll be patient. I’ve been working through this stuff for a couple of years, so what’s another month or so?”
  • Coach Michael Malone promises an “open competition” for the starting spot at small forward, Dempsey tweets.

Northwest Notes: Whiteside, Beasley, Schroder, Scott

Center Hassan Whiteside has never averaged more than one assist in any season but he predicts that will change dramatically in his first season with the Trail Blazers, Jason Quick of The Athletic reports.

“I think I’m going to blossom a lot here,” Whiteside told Quick. “[The Trail Blazers] have so much movement, they have so many different plays and reads, I can probably get a triple-double with assists here. You know, I’ve been getting so many assists and dimes … I’m playing more like a point-center here.”

We have more from the Northwest Division:

  • If the Nuggets don’t sign guard Malik Beasley to an extension, they could move him prior to him becoming a restricted free agent, Mike Singer of the Denver Post speculates. Beasley recently hired Rich Paul to represent him and he views himself as a starter but there’s no spot in the lineup for him, Singer continues. If the Nuggets offer Beasley in the $10-11MM annual range and he turns it down, they could theoretically try to trade him for a first-round pick after giving up next June’s first-rounder for Jerami Grant, Singer adds.
  • With Chris Paul and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander on the roster, Dennis Schroder‘s playing time would seemingly take a hit. Thunder GM Sam Presti insists that’s not the case, as he detailed to Erik Horne of The Oklahoman“There probably will be some discovery with how we see the team develop over the course of time, and (coach) Billy (Donovan) has got to make sure that the team is growing through the season and not just staying fixated because that’s how we started. And Dennis will be a huge … part of the team. He’s just that talented.”
  • Point guard Mike Scott had reportedly agreed to a one-year contract with the Jazz but he was not listed on the training camp roster that the club released on Friday. Scott, not to be confused with the Sixers forward who shares the same name, has spent the last four seasons overseas after coming out of Idaho in 2015. It’s still possible that Scott could be added, though the Jazz would have to drop someone from the 20-man roster.

Charania’s Latest: Nets, Heat, CP3, Noah, Clippers

Despite the fact that multiple Nets players are reportedly pushing for the team to sign Carmelo Anthony, Brooklyn appears very unlikely to do so at this point, league sources tell Shams Charania of The Athletic.

According to Charania, the Nets are more likely to fill their 20-man offseason roster they’ve worked out in recent weeks, including perhaps veteran forward Lance Thomas and swingman C.J. Williams. Dante Cunningham and Luol Deng are among the other free agents who have emerged as viable targets for Brooklyn, Charania adds.

With Wilson Chandler facing a 25-game suspension, the Nets could theoretically move on from the former Nugget to open up a spot on their 15-man regular season roster, but they currently have no plans to do so. As Charania points out, keeping Chandler on the suspended list during his 25-game ban will allow the franchise to recoup some of his salary. Plus, team executives believe Chandler would be quickly scooped up by another team if he were released later in the season.

Here are a few more items of interest from Charania’s latest round-up:

  • The Heat still have some level of trade interest in Thunder point guard Chris Paul, according to Charania. Miami is expected to wait to see how the start of the season goes before seriously considering whether to renew its pursuit of CP3, who would reciprocate the Heat’s interest.
  • Free agent big man Joakim Noah intends to join the Clippers for workouts this week, sources tell Charania. Noah’s father first suggested earlier this month that his son would be working out for the Clippers.
  • Nuggets guard Malik Beasley, who is eligible for a rookie scale extension up until October 21, has hired Rich Paul and Lucas Newton of Klutch Sports for representation, says Charania.
  • Although DeMarcus Cousins is only a one-year contract and seems likely to miss the entire 2019/20 season due to his torn ACL, the Lakers aren’t ready to move on from him yet. The Lakers wants to integrate him into the club’s culture, according to Charania, who notes that Cousins is expected to be around the team during its mini-camp in Las Vegas this week.

Nuggets Notes: Beasley, Hernangomez, Bol, Cancar

Possible extensions for Malik Beasley and Juancho Hernangomez are the last pieces of business the Nuggets may address before the opening of training camp, writes Mike Singer of The Denver Post. Denver’s front office acted quickly to give Jamal Murray a max extension, but the others aren’t clear-cut decisions, and Singer examines the positives and negatives of reaching deals with both players before the October 21 deadline.

Beasley emerged as a valuable bench player last season after injuries to Gary Harris and Will Barton. He averaged 15.9 PPG and shot 55% from the field as a starter, including 50% on 3-pointers. He enters this season as Harris’ primary backup, but still needs to improve on defense before coach Michael Malone will be comfortable playing him late in games. Singer speculates that based on last year’s performance, Beasley may want to skip an extension and try his luck as a restricted free agent next summer.

Hernangomez is coming off an injury-plagued season that saw him fall out of the rotation by the second half of the season. He had core surgery after the season ended and is coming off a strong performance with Spain’s gold medal-winning World Cup team. Hernangomez doesn’t have an established role and figures to compete for playing time with Barton, Torrey Craig, Michael Porter Jr. and Jerami Grant.

There’s more today from Denver:

  • It may be time for the Nuggets to move some of their depth in exchange for an established star, suggests Nick Kosmider of The Athletic. If the Wizards decide to part with Bradley Beal, for example, Kosmider believes Denver could put together a competitive offer involving Harris, Porter and a future first-rounder or possibly Hernangomez, Monte Morris, Beasley and a future pick. Other possible targets could include Kevin Love, Jeff Teague or one of the Raptors‘ veterans.
  • Bol Bol may spend his entire rookie season in the G League, Kosmider states in a mailbag column. Bol was a highly touted college prospect before injuries cut his season short, and the Nuggets view him as a project that will take time to develop, Kosmider adds, which is why he was signed to a two-way contract. Bol’s progress may be complicated because Denver doesn’t have a direct G League affiliate, which means much of the work will be done by another organization.
  • Vlatko Cancar may be in the same position, but his standard contract gives him a better chance to win a role in training camp, Kosmider notes in the same piece.