Milos Teodosic

Milos Teodosic Unlikely To Return To Clippers?

One year after arriving in Los Angeles from the EuroLeague, Milos Teodosic may see his time with the Clippers come to an end. The Clips are leaning toward parting ways with Teodosic this offseason, a league source tells Orazio Cauchi of Sportando.

Teodosic is one of four Clippers with a player option for 2018/19. Wesley Johnson ($6.1MM) has already opted in, but DeAndre Jordan ($24.1MM), Austin Rivers ($12.7MM), and Teodosic ($6.3MM) still have decisions to make.

Teodosic’s situation is somewhat unusual, since his salary will only become partially guaranteed if he exercises his player option. The Clippers would be on the hook for $2.1MM, but could eliminate the remaining $4.2MM from their books if they waive him by July 15, according to Basketball Insiders’ contract data. It’s essentially an informal mutual option — both the player and the team would have to pick up their sides for the veteran point guard to return to L.A. next season.

Teodosic had a solid NBA rookie season after a successful run in Europe, averaging 9.5 PPG, 4.6 APG, and 2.8 RPG with a .419/.379/.848 shooting line. However, he was limited to just 45 games due to injury issues. Concerns over Teodosic’s foot are one reason why the Clippers are considering going in another direction, Cauchi notes. The 31-year-old suffered a tear of the plantar fascia in his left foot near the end of the season, ending his year early.

If the Clippers do decide to waive Teodosic – or if he simply turns down his player option – it’s not clear what his next move would be. He talked during the season about how much he was enjoying his NBA experience, but there’s a growing feeling that he may consider a return to Europe if he becomes a free agent, according to Sportando.

Pacific Notes: Durant, Curry, Teodosic, Lakers

Kevin Durant has already said he will re-sign with the Warriors this summer, but it will likely be for a significantly higher salary than his previous contract. During an appearance on the Warriors Plus/Minus podcast, Durant addressed his decision to take a $10MM pay cut last summer, which helped enable Golden State to comfortably re-sign Andre Iguodala and Shaun Livingston.

Durant said that money has never been a driving force behind his decisions and he is more focused on playing well and dealing with contractual matters later. However, Durant also noted that he does not want to set a precedent for himself where the team can take advantage of him in future negotiations.

“I thought that, at that time, it was a good deal,” Durant said of his 2017/18 contract. “But that’s not setting a good precedent for me if I’m like, ‘Man, I’m taking [a $10MM discount].’ Now, they’re going to start taking advantage of me. You know what I’m saying? I know it’s a business, too. So, I’ve got a business to handle as well.”

For his part, Durant has put himself in position for another significant payday this offseason. In 68 games, he averaged 26.4 PPG, 6.8 RPG, and 5.4 APG for the Warriors.

Check out more Pacific Division notes below:

  • Per a report from yesterday, the Warriors expect to have two-time Most Valuable Player Stephen Curry for their Game 2 matchup against the Pelicans on Tuesday. Curry missed the first-round series against the Spurs — which Golden State won 4-1 — and was “50-50” heading into Saturday’s Game 1.
  • Milos Teodosic came to the Clippers this past season as one of the most popular and decorated players in Europe. While his first season was mired with injuries, his prolific passing ability was on display. Also, when healthy, the Clippers were 29-16 with Teodosic on the court, according to the Clippers’ website.
  • With the Thunder eliminated from the postseason, the focus now shifts to the Lakers pursuing top-tier free agents – including Paul George – to team up with their young studs, Mark Heisler of the Orange County Register writes.

Pacific Notes: Teodosic, Gallinari, Hart, Cook

It looks like Milos Teodosic‘s rookie season may be coming to an early end. The Clippers announced today that the point guard suffered a tear of the plantar fascia in his left foot. According to the club, Teodosic will be sidelined “indefinitely” and will be re-evaluated in two weeks.

The Clippers’ playoff hopes remain very much alive — with seven games left to play, the team is only a game behind the Jazz, 1.5 games behind the Timberwolves, and two games back of the Pelicans. Still, if the Clips are unable to sneak into the postseason, Teodosic’s season figures to be over — the regular season comes to an end on April 11, and he’s due to be re-evaluated on April 13.

Here are a few more items from around the Pacific division:

  • While Teodosic’s season is over, the Clippers will get injured forward Danilo Gallinari back on Friday night, per Brad Turner of The Los Angeles Times (Twitter link). Gallinari, the team’s prized 2017 free agent acquisition, has been bothered by injuries all season and has been out since February 22 with a hand issue.
  • Speaking of hand injuries, Lakers rookie Josh Hart, who underwent surgery on his left hand nearly a month ago, is set to return to action on Friday night as well, according to Ohm Youngmisuk of ESPN (Twitter link). Hart won’t be on a minutes limit.
  • Eric Pincus of Bleacher Report takes an early look at the Lakers‘ potential top targets for this summer’s draft and free agent period.
  • The Warriors haven’t yet approached Quinn Cook about the possibility of converting his two-way contract into an NBA deal, he said on Thursday night (video link). Still, Anthony Slater of The Athletic suggests that move still looks like a “sure thing” to make Cook playoff-eligible. The 25-year-old guard has thrived for the injury-plagued Dubs lately, averaging 20.6 PPG, 5.1 APG, and 4.7 RPG on .547/.526/.800 shooting in his last seven games.

Pacific Notes: Teodosic, Harrison, Suns, Warriors

Milos Teodosic granted reporters, including Elliott Teaford of The Orange County Register, a rare interview to discuss his decision to leave Europe and join the Clippers this past offseason. Prior to this season, Teodosic was regarded by many as the best basketball talent not signed to an NBA deal.

Injuries have slowed Teodosic this year but the 30-year-old has shown more than a few glimpses of his creative passing ability. In 37 games (30 starts), the Serbian point guard is averaging 9.3 PPG and 5.0 APG. While he wishes he came to the NBA earlier in his career, Teodosic said he would have retired with regrets if he didn’t join the Clippers.

“This is the best league in the world with the best players. I’m real happy that right now I’m here playing with these great players right next to me,” Teodosic said. “I believe I came a little bit late. I’m 30 or 31, so I wish I came when I was 25 or 26, so I can work on my body and my game. At least I came here. If I didn’t come, I for sure would be sorry.”

Check out other Pacific Division notes below:

  • A pair of historic performances earned Suns guard Shaquille Harrison a pair of 10-day contracts that turned into a multi-year pact. NBA.com’s Cody Cunningham looks at Harrison’s journey from undrafted prospect to being tasked with defending Damian Lillard in his second NBA game. “His confidence in me brings out my confidence,” Harrison said of coach Jay Triano giving him the assignment. “It’s an honor to be out there with him trusting me. It makes me play even harder because I know I’ve got the trust and he believes in my abilities. It’s easy to go out there and have fun and do what I do.”
  • Teams purposely tanking to secure better draft lottery positioning has become a major talking point in the NBA. The Suns‘ poor play and resting veterans could be seen as a possible tanking attempt, but if it were the case, Devin Booker would not be playing nearly 40 MPG since the break, Scott Bordow of Arizona Central Sports notes.
  • Suns general manager Ryan McDonough said the team will conduct a “wide-ranging” search for a head coach this offseason, Bordow writes in a separate story. Interim head coach Jay Triano will be among those considered, along with current and former NBA head coaches and possibly college coaches.
  • The Warriors have been mostly universally praised for their roster construction, which has led to two NBA championships in three seasons. However, Marcus Thompson II of The Athletic (subscription required and recommended) delves into Golden State’s offseason moves to see if the team made any missteps when assembling its roster for the 2017/18 campaign.

Clippers Notes: Jordan, Boban, Teodosic

Of all this season’s trade candidates who didn’t end up being dealt, DeAndre Jordan may have been the most frequent subject of trade rumors. However, after sticking with the Clippers through last month’s deadline, Jordan doesn’t seem eager to leave Los Angeles this summer. Although he’ll have the opportunity to become a free agent in July, Jordan tells Michael Lee of Yahoo Sports that his preference is to stay where he is.

“I’m here and that’s what I’m focused on,” Jordan said. “I’m excited. Like I told somebody the other day, I hope I can play another 10 years here. That’s what I’m focused on now.”

Jordan, who spoke about the “great times” he has had over the course of his 10 years with the Clippers, is probably unlikely to exercise his player option for 2018/19, according to Lee. However, even if he opts out, the veteran center could ink a new deal with the Clips. Whether such a deal is in the cards remains to be seen.

Here’s more on the Clippers:

  • Center Boban Marjanovic was an afterthought in this season’s Blake Griffin blockbuster, with the analysis of that deal mostly focusing on the other pieces the Clippers received — Tobias Harris, Avery Bradley, and a first-round pick. However, Marjanovic has been proving his value to the Clippers as of late, writes Elliott Teaford of The Daily Breeze. Boban has one more year left on his deal after this season and will earn $7MM in 2018/19.
  • Clippers point guard Milos Teodosic says he has no regrets about leaving Europe to come to the NBA, as he tells Broderick Turner of The Los Angeles Times. “So far, I really enjoy [playing in the NBA],” Teodosic said. “I’m happy to be here and I really enjoy playing with the best players in the world and against the best players in the world.”
  • Earlier today, we opened up a discussion on the Western Conference playoff race, which features the ninth-seeded Clippers looking to work their way into the top eight.

California Notes: Thomas, Teodosic, Clippers, Kings

Isaiah Thomas has played in just one game with the Lakers since he was traded from Cleveland on Thursday, so it’s too early to tell how he’s adjusting to his new Lakers teammates. Still, the results of that one game were promising, Elliot Teaford of the Orange County Register writes.

Thomas came off the bench to contribute 22 points and 6 assists in Saturday’s loss to the Mavericks. After the game, Thomas admitted that he watched the Lakers as a spectator this season and was aware of the talent the roster wields.

“I just wanted to come in with energy,” Thomas said. “I just wanted to bring something to the table. I just wanted to bring that energy, bring that intensity and make plays. The ball happened to go in. All these guys are talented. I watched this team from afar.”

Check out other news pertaining to California’s NBA teams:

  • Thomas’ journey from a top-five finish for the NBA MVP last season to Cavaliers castoff has brought uncertainty to his impending free agency, NBA.com’s David Aldridge writes. Opinions about Thomas’ future earning varied among several executives Aldridge questioned. One executive said Thomas’ Lakers debut made him look like a $12-$15MM per year player while others feel he will need to settle for a mid-level exception.
  • Marc Stein of the New York Times has an entertaining feature on Clippers point guard Milos Teodosic. The Serbian playmaker was regarded as the best player in the world not signed to an NBA deal until he arrived stateside this past offseason. In his chat with Stein, Teodosic discusses the myth that he eats cheeseburgers for breakfast, as well as his NBA future.
  • The Clippers are still in the thick of the playoff race, but their injury-riddled season has forced the team to get creative with lineups. After a busy trade deadline, the team can now focus on establishing a routine lineup for the remainder of the season, Broderick Turner of the Los Angeles Times writes.
  • The Kings are in a good cap space situation, but the team’s vision is gearing toward the summer of 2019, James Ham of NBC Sports writes. That summer, the Kings will be rid of all veteran contract commitments and will be in prime position to strike in the market.

Pacific Notes: Jackson, Jordan, Clippers

A difficult string of games in which the Suns were noticeably better without Josh Jackson than with him precipitated a change in his relationship with head coach Jay Triano. Now, Scott Bordow of the Arizona Republic writes, the first-year forward has started to regain the coaching staff’s trust.

When Triano told Jackson that he was losing his confidence in him, he asked the player what he might suggest to repair the situation. Since then, the two have watched film of Suns games.

[Jackson suggested they watch film of Suns games] just to see what [Triano] sees,” Jackson said. “Sometimes, two people look at the same play and see two totally different things. He has a basketball mind and he’s really smart, so just trying to see what he sees and trying to pick his brain a little bit.

In the three games since, Jackson has averaged 14 points, 5.7 rebounds and 3.0 assists per game for the Suns, shooting an impressive .486 from the field and .556 from three.

There’s more from the Pacific Division this afternoon:

  • The Clippers were treated to some good news on Thursday when it was revealed that Blake Griffin could return to action following a concussion and Milos Teodosic after another bout of plantar fascia issues (NBA.com report). Of course, in true Clippers fashion, DeAndre Jordan sprained his ankle hours later and had to leave the match (ESPN report).
  • The NBA fined Warriors forward Draymond Green $25K for comments critical of officials on Saturday, Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN tweets. The Dubs took down the Clippers that night.
  • Clippers head coach Doc Rivers thinks that NBA players seem to get injured more often than they used to because they’re not playing basketball enough. Per Elliott Teaford of the Orange County Register, Rivers posits that players do more things outside of the sport these days and that consistently reliable Jamal Crawford is one example of a guy that is constantly playing the game outside of his professional commitment.

Pacific Notes: Teodosic, Davis, Fox

There’s no exact timetable for Milos Teodosic‘s return, Broderick Turner of the Los Angeles Times writes. The seasoned Clippers rookie is making progress after missing Saturday’s contest but remains sidelined with the same injury that plagued him earlier this season.

Teodosic missed 22 games with the plantar fascia injury from October to mid-December but managed to work his way back into a significant role in the Clippers rotation.

On the season, Teodosic has averaged 8.4 points and 5.2 assists in 24.4 minutes per game for the Clippers.

There’s more out of the Pacific Division tonight:

  • The Warriors always tend to have an eye on their major long-term goals, kicking around possible acquisition targets that they could pursue when the time is right. Tim Kawakami of The Athletic writes that one of those targets could be Anthony Davis.
  • Rookie guard De’Aaron Fox has made a conscious effort to be more aggressive to take advantage of his speed, specifically in half-court sets. As Jason Jones of the Sacramento Bee writes, the decision paid off in a recent Kings‘ win. “I was just able to create and if it wasn’t my assist it was a hockey assist – so it was a pass and another pass. Just trying to be able to start the offense and get the defense moving.
  • The Suns won’t be welcoming big man Alan Williams back to the lineup before February but the 24-year-old is still heavily involved with his team. Scott Bordow of the Arizona Republic writes that Williams has become a very noticeably enthusiastic supporter of his teammates.

Los Angeles Notes: Bogut, Hart, Teodosic

Andrew Bogut broke his leg less than a minute into his Cavaliers debut last March, prematurely ending his 2016/17 season, Cavaliers tenure, and possibly his career. After a long summer of rehab, Bogut signed a one-year deal with the Lakers and has served as a mentor for the young NBA team, ESPN’s Nick Metallinos writes.

Bogut has not played much this season; he is averaging a career-low 7.7 minutes per game. He also has taken a DNP in 10 of the Lakers’ 26 games. Still, the Australian big man said he understood playing time would be limited when he signed with the team.

“I knew there wasn’t going to be a whole lot of minutes because I was the 15th guy signed to the roster,” Bogut said to ESPN. “I’ve just been trying to mentor some of the younger guys. We’ve got a really young and inexperienced team that bring a lot of energy and talent, so just some direction is needed every now and then and being one of the elder guys, [I’m] just trying to help them in the locker room.”

The Lakers are built on young talents such as Lonzo Ball, Kyle Kuzma, Brandon Ingram, and Jordan Clarkson. In his age 33 season, Bogut said that being a mentor is more important than having minutes.

Check out other news coming out of Los Angeles:

  • Lakers rookie Josh Hart had an impressive first NBA start on Wednesday against the Cavaliers, posting 11 points and 10 rebounds in the loss. After four collegiate seasons at Villanova, Hart said he is prepared for the big stage and head coach Luke Walton agrees, Bill Oram of the Orange County Register writes.“It showed where he came from as a college player winning a national title and playing with a big-time program for many years,” Walton said of Hart’s performance. “That big stage did not faze him at all today.”
  • After missing two months due to a foot injury, Clippers point guard Milos Teodosic will be on a minutes restriction as the organization tries to keep him healthy, Broderick Turner of the Los Angeles Times writes. “Milos, because of the minutes restrictions, we can’t play him on back-to-backs,” Clippers head coach Doc Rivers said. “So we have to sit him.” However, Rivers noted that this is temporary and that Teodosic’s minutes restriction should be lifted later in the season.

Los Angeles Notes: Ball, Bryant, Teodosic, Gallinari

After Lonzo Ball‘s outspoken father, LaVar Ball, recently made critical comments of the Lakers and head coach Luke Walton, the organization held a private meeting with LaVar, asking him to tone down his remarks, ESPN’s Ramon Shelbourne writes.

The elder Ball confirmed the meeting — which was organized by Lakers president of basketball operations Magic Johnson and general manager Rob Pelinka — took place and said both sides finding common ground is critical to both his son and the team.

“It was the best thing, man. Everybody’s going to try to make it an ego thing, like I’m trying to tell them what to do or they’re trying to tell me to tone it down,” LaVar said of the meeting. “It’s not about that. It’s about coming together and to get a solution to this problem.”

Among LaVar’s criticisms were Walton not playing Lonzo for long enough stretches, adding that he could coach his son better. Walton downplayed LaVar’s comments in recent days and has praised Lonzo’s team-first mindset and contributions. As the season — and Lonzo’s career progresses — LaVar said he would continue speaking his mind with the goal of helping his son improve.

“It may sound crazy to other people, but I really just want the best for Lonzo, and the best for Lonzo is going to be what’s best for the organization,” LaVar said. “Because if everybody winning, we good.”

Read up on more news coming out of Los Angeles:

  • Former Lakers superstar Kobe Bryant has made several comments about Lonzo in recent days and his latest take on the 20-year-old point guard directly addressed his father, Bill Oram of the Orange County Register writes. Bryant said that pressure placed on Lonzo is “completely inconsequential” as long as he proves himself on the court. “The only time that matters is when he has to think of an answer,” Bryant said. “What matters is what he does in the gym before practice, during practice and after practice. That’s the only thing that matters.”
  • Michael Lee of Yahoo Sports profiled Clippers rookie point guard Milos Teodosic, chronicling his journey from one of the most creative passers in the game as an international player to a starter in the NBA.
  • Danilo Gallinari returned to the Clippers lineup after missing 13 games with a glute injury and he will now likely miss several games with a new glute injury, ESPN’s Lawrence Murray writes. Injuries have allowed Gallinari to appear in just 11 games this season, averaging 13.4 PPG. “It’s been that type of season thus far,” head coach Doc Rivers said. “Things can change. Right now, they are, they keep changing back to somebody getting hurt.”