Mike Scott

Contract Details: Redick, Bertans, Clippers, O’Quinn

J.J. Redick‘s new deal with the Sixers gives him plenty of protection in the unlikely event that Philadelphia wants to trade him. Because he re-signed on a one-year deal and will have Early Bird rights at the end of it, he receives the ability to block any trade involving him during the 2018/19 league year, since he’d lose those Early Bird rights in the event that he’s moved.

On top of that, Redick has a 7.5% trade kicker in his new deal, according to Eric Pincus of Basketball Insiders (Twitter link), which would give him a bonus if the Sixers do trade him and he approves the deal. That bonus would be worth about $919K, since Redick’s new contract has a value of $12.25MM, per Pincus.

Here are a few more details on newly-signed contracts, courtesy of Pincus:

  • The Spurs‘ new two-year agreement with Davis Bertans has a base value of $7MM annually, but Bertans can also earn $250K in unlikely incentives per year (Twitter link). The deal can be worth up to $14.5MM in total.
  • The Clippers split their full mid-level exception right down the middle, with Luc Mbah a Moute and Mike Scott each receiving $4,320,500 (Twitter link). L.A. will be hard-capped this season as a result of using the full MLE.
  • Jarred Vanderbilt, the 41st overall pick in this year’s draft, got a three-year, minimum-salary contract from the Nuggets with two fully guaranteed seasons (Twitter link). The third year will be non-guaranteed until July 15, 2020.
  • Kyle O’Quinn received the Pacers‘ full room exception ($4.449MM) on his one-year contract (Twitter link).

Lowe’s Latest: Kawhi, Sixers, Celtics, Scott, More

The Sixers have not made Markelle Fultz available in Kawhi Leonard trade talks with the Spurs, and the Celtics haven’t been willing to include Jaylen Brown in their discussions with San Antonio, ESPN’s Zach Lowe confirms in his latest article.

We’ve heard variations on Lowe’s report for the last week or two, with ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski (video link) recently suggesting that the Sixers don’t want to discuss Fultz, Joel Embiid, or Ben Simmons in Leonard talks, and adding that the Celtics’ top five players have been “off-limits” in negotiations with the Spurs — presumably, Woj was referring to Brown, Jayson Tatum, Kyrie Irving, Gordon Hayward, and Al Horford.

Lowe’s full piece on the Leonard situation features several more tidbits of note, including some items only tangentially related to a possible Leonard trade. Let’s round up the highlights…

  • LeBron James isn’t pressuring the Lakers to add a second star for now, according to Lowe, who says that James “has faith in the combined powers of his supernova talent and the Lakers brand.” LeBron also recognizes that Brandon Ingram has considerable upside and is aware that many star free agents could be on the market in 2019, Lowe notes.
  • Lowe classifies rumors that Jimmy Butler and Kyrie Irving want to play together as “credible chatter.” However, the Celtics remain confident that they’ll be able to re-sign Irving next year, per Lowe.
  • Details of Mike Scott‘s contract agreement with the Clippers have yet to surface, but Lowe indicates the deal will use part of the team’s mid-level exception rather than being a minimum-salary signing.
  • Lowe’s piece is worth checking out in full, particularly for a section in which he brainstorms hypothetical wild-card suitors for Leonard, exploring whether the Raptors, Trail Blazers, Wizards, Timberwolves, Thunder, Heat, Rockets, Bucks, Nuggets, Warriors, Pistons, or Kings might be fits — many are quick “no”s, but some generate some intriguing hypothetical deals.

Clippers Sign Mike Scott To One-Year Deal

JULY 9th, 5:59pm: The signing is official, according to the team’s PR Twitter feed. The one-year deal is said to be worth approximately $4.3MM, per ESPN’s Zach Lowe (Twitter link).

JULY 2nd, 3:48pm: The Clippers have agreed to terms on a deal with veteran free agent Mike Scott, reports ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski (via Twitter). According to Woj, Scott will sign a one-year contract with Los Angeles.

The Clippers were said to have strong interest in Anthony Tolliver, meeting with him on the first day of the free agent period Sunday. However, once Tolliver committed to the Timberwolves, L.A. shifted its focus to other options and did well to land Scott, who will add depth at forward behind Tobias Harris and Danilo Gallinari.

Scott, a 6’8″ power forward, had a strong season for the Wizards in 2017/18, averaging 8.8 PPG and 3.3 RPG in a part-time role (18.5 MPG). He also set career highs in FG% (.527) and 3PT% (.405).

The Wizards had made it a priority to bring back Scott, according to Candace Buckner of The Washington Post (Twitter link), but he’ll head west for the coming season, leaving Washington to look elsewhere for frontcourt help.

Free Agent Rumors: Gordon, Brewer, Favors

While the Magic plan to pursue a long-term deal with restricted free agent Aaron Gordon, another team to keep an eye on is the Lakers, Marc Spears of ESPN tweets.

It’s no surprise that Gordon, a 23-year-old fresh off of a career year with averages of 17.6 points and 7.9 rebounds per game, is generating interest in free agency but Zach Lowe of ESPN writes that Orlando may not have much pressure to go as high as the max to retain him.

The Lakers join a number of other teams apparently interested in poaching Gordon’s services, including the Pacers (story) and Kings (story).

  • The Rockets have scheduled a meeting with free agent wing James Nunnally, per international basketball reporter David Pick (Twitter link). Nunnally, who has also been linked to Portland and Minnesota, played for Turkish team Fenerbahce last season and knocked down 55% of his three-pointers in EuroLeague play, making him an interesting fit for Houston.
  • Having already been linked to several potential targets since the free agent period opened, the Timberwolves have also “planted seeds” with Corey Brewer and Davis Bertans, according to Darren Wolfson of 5 Eyewitness News (Twitter link). As Wolfson observes, Minnesota has made a habit in recent years of spreading a wide net in free agency, inquiring on dozens of players.
  • In a later tweet, Darren Wolfson of 5 Eyewitness News added that the Timberwolves have also checked in on Derrick Favors, Mike Scott, David Nwaba and Ian Clark.

FA Rumors: Grant, Scott, George, McCullough

The Bulls, Pacers, and Magic are among the teams expected to push the Thunder for free agent forward Jerami Grant, a source tells Jordan Schultz of Yahoo Sports (Twitter link). Grant emerged as a key bench piece for Oklahoma City in 2017/18, averaging 8.4 PPG and 3.9 RPG with a .535 FG%. However, the Thunder may be hard-pressed to retain him if Paul George returns, since the club would be well over the tax line, making a competitive offer for Grant worth exponentially more expensive due to potential tax penalties.

Here are a few more notes and rumors on free agency, with the new NBA league year just two days away:

  • The Wizards are hoping to re-sign Mike Scott in free agency, but the veteran forward is expected to draw significant interest on the open market, according to Chase Hughes of NBC Sports Washington. Hughes suggests that as many as 10 teams are preparing to reach out to Scott’s representatives.
  • In an interesting piece for ESPN.com, Royce Young takes an in-depth look at the Thunder‘s year-long recruitment of Paul George, explaining how the club has put itself in position to be a serious suitor for the star forward this offseason.
  • Wizards forward Chris McCullough, who will become an unrestricted free agent on Sunday, has committed to playing for the Sixers‘ Summer League team, as Keith Pompey of The Philadelphia Inquirer details.
  • Coming off a big EuroLeague season, James Nunnally is re-testing the NBA market, according to international basketball reporter David Pick, who tweets that Nunnally worked out for the Trail Blazers and will also get a look from the Timberwolves.
  • One player agent who spoke to Alex Kennedy of HoopsHype said he’s worried that many agents will be fired this summer as a result of a tight market. “It’s going to be the worst free-agent market in terms of money that I’ve seen since I started working as an agent,” the agent said. “It’s going to be a very, very difficult summer for anyone who isn’t getting a max contract.” ESPN’s Kevin Pelton took a closer look at the team-friendly market and identified a few free agents who might get squeezed.

Wizards Notes: Roster, Shooting, Scott, Porter

John Wall would like to see the Wizards make changes to their roster this offseason, and it seems like a safe bet that they’ll do so, since they haven’t been shy about changing up their bench pieces in recent years, writes Chase Hughes of NBC Sports Washington. However, as Hughes outlines, the franchise will also have to make bigger decisions about whether its current core has the necessary qualities to take the Wizards where they want to go.

The Wizards’ starting lineup – Wall, Bradley Beal, Otto Porter, Markieff Morris, and Marcin Gortat – was one of the NBA’s most effective five-man units in 2016/17, but didn’t repeat that success this past season due to health issues and general inconsistency. Those five players are expensive, and Morris and Gortat are entering contract years, so making changes at power forward and/or center wouldn’t be a surprise, according to Hughes. Anything beyond that would qualify as a major shake-up.

Here’s more on the Wizards:

  • In his end-of-season comments to the media, head coach Scott Brooks expressed a desire for Washington to become a better three-point shooting club. In order to achieve that goal, the Wizards will have to add more shooters to their roster this offseason, particularly with Jodie Meeks set to serve the remaining 19 games of his suspension to open the year, writes Candace Buckner of The Washington Post.
  • After a successful comeback season – including a solid performance in the playoffs – Mike Scott has set himself up well for free agency this summer, says Chase Hughes of NBC Sports Washington. Scott, who may be in line for a multiyear deal, said at season’s end that he’d be happy with a role similar to the one he played this season, per Hughes.
  • In a separate article for NBC Sports Washington, Hughes examines the next steps for Otto Porter to expand his game and continue to make good on his maximum-salary contract.

Southeast Notes: Budenholzer, Scott, Clifford, Weltman

The Hawks can expect a first-round pick if coach Mike Budenholzer bolts for another team, according to Michael Cunningham of the Atlanta Journal Constitution. Budenholzer, who has two years left on his contract, was granted permission to interview for the Suns job. The Celtics received an unprotected first-round pick in the 2015 draft when the Clippers hired Doc Rivers in 2013, Cunningham notes. The Suns own extra first-round picks in the 2019 and 2021 drafts from previous trades, Cunningham adds.

In other developments around the Southeast Division:

  • Forward Mike Scott has emerged as a key member of the Wizards’ second unit in their playoff series against the top-seeded Raptors, Chase Hughes of NBCSports.com notes. Scott was the only productive bench player Washington had in Game 1, as he scored 14 of its 21 points. A productive series would help Scott land a contract this summer. He signed a one-year, $1.47MM deal with the Wizards last summer.
  • Steve Clifford, who was fired as the Hornets coach last week, believes the team didn’t play with the same attitude it showed in previous years. Clifford made the comments during a press conference posted on the team’s website. “We’ve always had spirit. We didn’t have that this year,” he said. “Some games (we did), but not nearly the togetherness and spirit we’ve had in other years. They know that.”
  • The Magic are in no rush to hire a new coach after firing Frank Vogel following the regular season, John Denton of the team’s website reports. President of basketball operations Jeff Weltman indicated that during a postseason press conference. “It is something that you’d rather do sooner than later so that we can get a guy in place and have our new staff around so that they can get their arms around our players, develop relationships and develop our young guys,’’ Weltman said. “All of that factors in. It would be better sooner, but as I always say … `we’re going to get it right before we get it fast.’ Hopefully, we can do both on this.’’

2018 Free Agent Stock Watch: Washington Wizards

The Wizards made the bold decision to commit max money to three organization grown players long-term and will permanently have their hands full managing their finances as a result. In order to make the strategy work, they’ll need to be responsible with where they spend the rest of their budget.

While the club already projects to dip into the luxury tax this season and next (with over $29MM in guaranteed money tied up in Marcin Gortat and Ian Mahinmi in 2018/19 alone), they’ll get a chance to practice financial restraint this summer with a handful of free agents that they can afford to part ways with if they feel the need to.

Tim Frazier, PG, 27 (Down) – Signed to a two-year, $4.1MM deal in 2016
One season removed from a fantastic stint as a spot starter in New Orleans in 2016/17, Frazier hasn’t had much of an impact since coming over in a draft day trade last June. The Wizards were in need of a reliable backup point guard when they targeted Frazier but seem to have grown comfortable with the idea of Tomas Satoransky handling backup point guard duties in John Wall‘s absence. For that reason, Frazier will probably have to choose between rounding out the club’s rotation as a third-string playmaker or look elsewhere.

Sheldon Mac, SG, 25 (Down) – Signed to a two-year, $1.8MM deal in 2016
A torn Achilles has rendered Mac unable to suit up in 2017/18. He’ll hit restricted free agency in the summer but don’t expect any suitors until he can prove that he’s healthy enough to battle for a rotation spot. That’ll likely have to happen in the G League.

Chris McCullough, PF, 23 (Down) – Signed to a three-year, $3,8MM deal in 2015
The Wizards, to this point, have shown little interested in working McCullough into their rotation. The 23-year-old showed some flashes of promise during his rookie campaign with the Nets in 2015/16 but then again many fringe NBA players have looked half-decent in Brooklyn’s lineup the last few years. If all goes well, McCullough will find another squad to break training camp with next fall. It’s hard to say whether or not there will be much more beyond that.

Jodie Meeks, SG, 30 (Up) – Signed to a two-year, $6.7MM deal in 2017
After several years of struggling to stay on the court, Meeks has shown that he can contribute modestly off the bench. While his player option for 2018/19 comes in at a rather cheap $3.5MM for a player with his experience, don’t be surprised if the veteran elects to return. There may be a team out there willing to give the career .417 three-point shooter more than that on the open market but an argument can be made that Meeks could benefit more in the long run from simply focusing on staying healthy and relevant where he is, while worrying about free agency in 2019.

Mike Scott, PF, 29 (Up) – Signed to a one-year, $1.7MM deal in 2017
The Wizards got a key rotation piece for dirt cheap over the summer and the forward has done nothing but raise his stock over the course of the season. Expect teams to take an interest in the veteran role player with impressive efficiency numbers and the ability to put points on the board. Washington would likely be happy to retain him but will be limited in what they can offer him.

Jason Smith, C, 32 (Down) – Signed to a three-year, $15.7MM deal in 2016
Smith hit free agency at the perfect time back in 2016. This summer, in contrast, teams won’t be so willing to cough up significant money for career reserves with forgettable portfolios. Smith’s stints with the Magic, Knicks and Pelicans hardly justified the contract he signed two summers ago but he’s done even less since arriving in Washington. For that reason, expect him to accept his $5.5MM player option.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Southeast Notes: Wall, Hezonja, Olynyk

The Wizards may be without John Wall this weekend, Chase Hughes of NBC Sports Washington writes. The point guard continues to experience discomfort in his knee and underwent an MRI on it this afternoon.

John is definitely going to be questionable tomorrow,” Wizards head coach Scott Brooks said. “We’ll see how he feels [Saturday morning] and then make a decision from there.

The knee issues can be traced back to two weekends ago when members of the Wizards training staff administered a pair of IVs to help Wall recover from migraines and a general sickness. That fluid, however, collected in his knee.

The problem, Wall says, is that his mobility hasn’t returned despite having already had the fluid drained. If it doesn’t return soon, the 27-year-old All-Star who missed the team’s Friday afternoon practice, could miss his third game of the young NBA season.

There’s more out of the Southeast Division:

  • Despite their best efforts, the Magic didn’t find a taker for Mario Hezonja prior to October 31, Zach Lowe of ESPN writes. That date is significant because the team was forced to decide whether or not to extend the swingman through 2018/19. When no trade materialized, the club declined the option. Now, Lowe writes, a team should buy low on the project and see if they can develop him into a serviceable rotation player. Despite going fifth overall in the 2015 NBA Draft, the 22-year-old has averaged just 5.3 points through his first three seasons.
  • At this point in the season, Kelly Olynyk is not projected to hit the 1,700-minute plateau that would trigger an extra $1MM in salary, Ira Winderman of the Sun Sentinel writes. The big man is averaging 18.5 minutes per game for the Heat so far in 2017/18.
  • Backup forward Mike Scott has thrived in his first year with the Wizards. The 29-year-old has averaged 8.6 points and 3.4 rebounds per game off the bench in Washington and the man he replaces in the starting lineup has taken notice of his playing style. “I think he’s trying to steal my game,” Markieff Morris joked. “We kind of resemble each other a lot more than what I thought before he got here.

Southeast Notes: Hornets, Wizards, Jordan

The Hornets struggled to keep leads when their starters – particularly Kemba Walker and Cody Zeller – were on the bench last season. The question ahead of 2017/18 then, Rick Bonnell of the Charlotte Observer asks, is whether or not that will change this season.

Gone are all of Walker’s and Zeller’s backups, a veritable laundry list of players from Ramon Sessions, Brian Roberts and Briante Weber to Spencer Hawes, Roy Hibbert and Miles Plumlee. In their place are Michael Carter-Williams and Dwight Howard, both of whom were attained by the Hornets at relative bargains over the summer.

Of course the addition of Carter-Williams will provide size and defense to the Hornets’ second unit but the real draw is Howard, not because of what he’ll add off the bench but because of what his addition to the starting lineup entails.

As we’ve already written, head coach Steve Clifford has already committed to starting Howard when the season begins, that means Zeller himself will be able to work directly with the Hornets’ second unit to help do for them what he did for the starting five in 2016/17.

There’s more from the Southeast Division:

  • The Wizards will have a number of players to replace Markieff Morris with when the season tips off. The forward is currently expected to miss six to eight weeks with a sports hernia. “We have versatility and we have depth. We can go in many different directions. We can go small. We can throw Kelly Oubre]in there. We can throw Jason Smith in there. Mike Scott we can put in there. There’s a lot of players that we can throw into the mix,” head coach Scott Brooks told Chase Hughes of CSN Mid-Atlantic.
  • Hornets majority owner Michael Jordan will soon have a stake in another professional sports franchise. Jordan is part of Derek Jeter‘s group that has been approved to buy the Miami Marlins, Rick Bonnell of the Charlotte Observer writes.
  • Only time will tell how Hawks head coach Mike Budenholzer and new general manager Travis Schlenk mesh over the next few years but the dynamic between the two could be worth watching as the organization’s priorities shift from winning ball games to developing for the future. Michael Cunningham of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution writes that Budenholzer will embrace the rebuild, whether that’s his preference or not.