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Suns To Meet With Jimmer Fredette

Jimmer Fredette‘s next shot at the NBA might come in Phoenix. John Gambadoro of Arizona Sports is reporting that Fredette will meet with the Suns tomorrow about the possibility of filling an open roster spot.

Fredette, 30, is available after his Shanghai Sharks were eliminated from the Chinese Basketball Association playoffs on Tuesday. He has been a star in China since leaving the NBA in 2016, and led the CBA in scoring this season at 36.9 points per game.

The 10th pick in the 2011 draft, Fredette played for four teams in five seasons and hasn’t been in the NBA since signing a 10-day deal with the Knicks three years ago. He was never more than a part-time player in the league, averaging 6.0 PPG in 235 games.

Pelicans Claim Christian Wood; Waive Jason Smith

5:37pm: The move is official, according to a tweet from the Pelicans.

4:10pm: The Pelicans picked up former Bucks forward Christian Wood on waivers, tweets ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski. Jason Smith has been waived to create a roster opening, according to Shams Charania of The Athletic (Twitter link).

Milwaukee parted with Wood on Monday to make room for Tim Frazier, who was signed to bolster the backcourt after an injury to Malcolm Brogdon. There was speculation that Wood might draw interest on the waiver wire because of the promise he showed in the G League and a $1,645,357 salary for next season that is non-guaranteed. He will receive $822,679 if he’s not waived before opening night, tweets ESPN’s Bobby Marks. With the waiver claim, New Orleans inherits Wood’s $1,512,601 cap charge for this year, which is removed from the Bucks’ books.

Wood, 23, got into just 13 games during his time in Milwaukee, playing less than five minutes per night. He made a huge impact in the G League, averaging 29.3 PPG, 14.0 RPG, 2.4 APG and 2.1 BPG on 55.9% shooting in 28 games (35.3 MPG) for the Wisconsin Herd. He has previous NBA experience with the Sixers and Hornets.

Wood may get a greater chance to prove himself with the Pelicans, who are playing Anthony Davis on a limited schedule and are thinking about shutting down Jrue Holiday and E’Twaun Moore for the rest of the season.

Smith finds himself on waivers after playing just two games for New Orleans following a trade from the Bucks last month. The 33-year-old was on his third team this season, playing six games for Milwaukee and 12 for Washington.

Lakers Signing Scott Machado To 10-Day Deal

Scott Machado will sign a 10-day contract with the Lakers, tweets Michael Scotto of The Athletic.

The 28-year-old was in training camp with L.A., but was waived just before the season began. His only prior NBA experience was six games with the Rockets during his rookie year of 2012/13.

Machado has spent this season with the South Bay Lakers in the G League, where he posted a 16.4/3.4/8.0 line in 45 games. He was recently named G League Player of the Week, according to Scotto.

The Lakers have a full 15-man roster, but Andre Ingram‘s 10-day deal is about to expire, so it appears the team will opt not to re-sign him to create room for Machado.

Bucks’ Mirotic Fractures Thumb, Expected To Miss At Least 2-4 Weeks

The injury bug continues to plague the Bucks, according to Shams Charania of The Athletic, who reports (via Twitter) that Nikola Mirotic has sustained a slight fracture of his left thumb. League sources tell Charania that Mirotic is expected to be sidelined for at least two to four weeks.

Mirotic had just entered Milwaukee’s starting lineup within the last few days, replacing Malcolm Brogdon, who is expected to be on the shelf for at least six weeks due to a foot injury. Now the Bucks will have to find another new starter to replace Mirotic, who may be out until the playoffs — the final day of the regular season is three weeks from today.

Acquired by the Bucks at last month’s trade deadline, Mirotic missed his first few games due to a strained right calf, but had settled in nicely since then, averaging 11.6 PPG and 5.4 RPG on .415/.356/.870 in 22.9 minutes per contest for Milwaukee.

With Mirotic sidelined, the Bucks may have to lean a little more heavily on the likes of Ersan Ilyasova and D.J. Wilson in the frontcourt. New addition Pau Gasol could see some action as well, as the club looks to secure the No. 1 seed in the Eastern Conference.

Doc Rivers Plans To Be With Clippers For A “Long Time”

Everyone is going to the Lakers — or at least that’s what the rumor mill might lead readers to believe. The latest subject of Lakers-related speculation was Doc Rivers, as there were whispers that he might be considering leaving the Clippers for the club’s intra-city rivals. Rivers dismissed that idea today.

“I have a job and the Lakers have a coach,” Rivers said, via Ben Golliver of the Washington Post (Twitter link). “I’m going nowhere. I can tell you that, straight, up front. I’m going to be here until [Clippers owner] Steve Ballmer says get out. I plan on being here a long time.”

Ballmer previously reworked Rivers’ contract, allowing him an opt-out in 2019. According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski (Twitter link), that extension has been again reworked into a longer deal.

“This summer, we decided to extend my contract,” Rivers explained. “…[Steve] did something I don’t think any owner would do. He gave me an out where I could opt out this summer.

“We wanted to test each other, we thought this was the right fit, but we wanted to make sure. As my dad said, ‘Trust everybody, but cut the cards.’ It was one of those things.

“Early this year, we both decided let’s end this thing, take this out, extend it and make it a longer deal. We’ve long decided on that but we chose not to say anything about it.

“…Steve was a man of his word. He gave a coach a chance to do what he wanted to do. This coach chose to stay right where he’s at and I’m very happy about it.”

The exact terms of the extension have not yet been made public, but Rivers said that his job “is not done,” adding that one of the reasons he came to the Clippers was to win a championship. Another goal was to make the franchise a free agent destination.

What’s clear is that Rivers plans to be part of the Clippers’ free agent pitches this summer as they compete with the Lakers and many other teams for top available talent.

Jason Terry To Play In BIG3

Former NBA champion and Sixth Man of the Year Jason Terry is the latest big-name addition to the BIG3, the league announced today (via Twitter).

Terry, 41, appeared in 51 games for the Bucks just last season, but despite his desire to play a 20th NBA season, he didn’t catch on with a team in 2018/19. Instead, he’ll set his sights on Ice Cube‘s three-on-three league, as he’ll participate in the 2019 BIG3 season. Speaking to James Herbert of CBSSports.com, Terry said he decided to join the BIG3 because of his “love for the game and for the fans.”

“Watching the BIG3 the last two years — the first year I was able to attend the championship game in Vegas, last year I was at one of the home games in Dallas — sitting courtside, I promised Cube, the very first year that I retire, that I will play in the BIG3,” Terry said.

Terry, who currently ranks fifth on the NBA’s all-time list with 2,282 three-pointers made, also vowed to take full advantage of the ability to attempt four-point shots in the BIG3.

“I love it. I love that dynamic of the game,” Terry told Herbert. “I think it’s a part of the game that, guys in today’s NBA, they shoot it from long range but they only get three points for it. Now we’re out here in the BIG3, I’m going to get four points for something that I ordinarily did. An extra point goes a long way for me.”

Joe Johnson, Al Jefferson, Lamar Odom, Gilbert Arenas, Kendrick Perkins, Josh Smith, and Mario Chalmers are among the other players that have committed to playing in the BIG3 in 2019. The league also announced a couple more additions to its player pool in recent days, confirming (via Twitter) that NBA veterans Ronnie Brewer and Brandon Rush will participate this season.

Bucks Sign Tim Frazier, Waive Christian Wood

MARCH 19, 10:22am: The Bucks have officially signed Frazier to a rest-of-season deal, according to a press release from the team.

MARCH 18, 11:05am: The Bucks have officially waived Wood, the team announced today (via Twitter).

MARCH 18, 9:32am: The Bucks are making a change to their 15-man roster in the wake of Malcolm Brogdon‘s foot injury, according to Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports, who reports (via Twitter) that the team will sign free agent guard Tim Frazier. Milwaukee will waive forward Christian Wood to open up a spot for the new addition.

It’s a logical move for the Bucks, who carried Frazier on their roster during training camp and the preseason last fall before releasing him. The 28-year-old was claimed off waivers by the Pelicans at that point, but once New Orleans fell out of playoff contention in February, the club cut Frazier to take a flier on EuroLeague sharpshooter Dairis Bertans.

In 47 games (17 starts) this season with the Pelicans, Frazier averaged 5.0 PPG, 4.4 APG, and 2.9 RPG with a .451/.351/.780 shooting line.

Signing Frazier will allow the Bucks to address an area of need, with Brogdon expected to miss approximately six to eight weeks due to a minor plantar fascia tear in his right foot. However, the move will cost the team Wood, who was a “valued member” of the organization, as Haynes tweets.

The 23-year-old played sparingly for Milwaukee this season, but has put up massive G League numbers, averaging 29.3 PPG, 14.0 RPG, 2.4 APG, and 2.1 BPG on 55.9% shooting in 28 games (35.3 MPG) for the Wisconsin Herd. He’s expected to draw interest from other NBA clubs, per Haynes, though he wouldn’t be playoff-eligible this spring.

If Wood goes unclaimed on waivers, the Bucks will remain responsible for his $1,512,601 cap hit for 2018/19, but would be off the hook for $1,645,357 salary for 2019/20, since it’s non-guaranteed. Wood might be an appealing target on waivers though, since his two-year, minimum-salary contract allows any club to place a claim using the minimum salary exception. If he’s claimed, his cap charge would be removed from Milwaukee’s books.

Frazier, meanwhile, would have a $205,098 cap hit for the rest of the season if the Bucks officially sign him today.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Hawks Sign Deyonta Davis To 10-Day Deal

10:21am: The Hawks have officially signed Davis to a 10-day contract, the club announced today in a press release. The deal will run through Thursday, March 28.

8:57am: The Hawks are set to sign G League big man Deyonta Davis to a 10-day contract, reports Shams Charania of The Athletic (via Twitter). Atlanta opened a spot on its 15-man roster on Monday when Tyler Zeller‘s 10-day deal expired, so no corresponding move will be necessary.

Davis, 22, was selected with the 31st overall pick in the 2016 draft and appeared in 98 total games in two seasons for the Grizzlies, averaging 4.3 PPG and 3.2 RPG in 12.1 minutes per contest. However, Memphis traded him to the Kings during the 2018 offseason and he was subsequently waived.

Having failed to catch on with an NBA team for the 2018/19 season, Davis headed to the G League, where he has appeared in 43 games for the Santa Cruz Warriors. The former Michigan State standout has recorded 9.7 PPG, 7.4 RPG, and 1.3 BPG in 23.4 MPG for Golden State’s NBAGL affiliate.

With their spot in the lottery fairly secure, the Hawks have been using 10-day contracts to audition various players during the season’s second half. Davis will be the fourth player to sign at least one 10-day deal with Atlanta in 2019, joining Zeller, Jordan Sibert, and B.J. Johnson. Johnson’s second 10-day pact is set to expire this Thursday night, so the Hawks will open up another roster spot at that time.

Davis will earn $85,458 on his 10-day contract with the Hawks.

Jazz, Grizzlies Could Revisit Conley Trade Talks In Offseason

Prior to this season’s trade deadline, the Jazz and Grizzlies engaged in serious discussions about a deal that would have sent Mike Conley to Utah. While the two sides ultimately didn’t agree to terms on a deadline deal, those talks could pick back up in June, front office executives tell Kevin O’Connor of The Ringer.

The exact details of Utah’s February offer for Conley aren’t known, but the Jazz were believed to be offering at least a first-round pick and a pair of expiring veteran contracts (Ricky Rubio and Derrick Favors). Memphis reportedly sought a second first-round pick or point guard Dante Exum, and the Jazz weren’t willing to go that high.

The Grizzlies moved on from veteran center Marc Gasol at last month’s deadline, signaling that they’re ready to break up their longtime core and retool their roster. In other words, Conley is a good bet to be back on the trade block this summer. However, a report after the deadline suggested that Memphis also doesn’t mind the idea of hanging onto its point guard and building around Conley and Jaren Jackson, so an offseason trade certainly isn’t a foregone conclusion.

Conley remains under contract for $32.5MM in 2019/20, with a $34.5MM early termination option for 2020/21. That’s a steep price to pay for a point guard in his 30s, but the former Ohio State standout has been as good as ever this season, averaging a career-high 20.7 PPG to go along with 6.4 APG, 3.4 RPG, and 1.4 SPG.

The Jazz, meanwhile, could be on the lookout for a point guard this summer with Rubio set to reach unrestricted free agency and Exum once again plagued by health issues.

C.J. McCollum To Be Re-Evaluated In One Week With Popliteus Strain

Trail Blazers guard C.J. McCollum has avoided a major injury, with an MRI revealing that he suffered a popliteus strain in his left knee against the Spurs on Saturday, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski (Twitter link).

McCollum will be re-evaluated in one week, Wojnarowski reports.

“God looked out for me,” McCollum told Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports (Twitter link). “Could’ve been a lot worse.”

McCollum, 27, exited Saturday’s game early after landing awkwardly on his knee. He appeared to be in significant pain, immediately being helped to the locker room and sending a scare throughout the Blazers organization. Initial X-rays were negative after the game.

McCollum has averaged 21.3 points, four rebounds and 2.9 assists in 68 contests this season, shooting 46% from the field and 38% from 3-point range. He’s in his sixth straight season with the team since being drafted 10th overall in 2013.

The Blazers are gearing up to make a playoff run behind the likes of McCollum, Damian Lillard, Jusuf Nurkic and others, holding the fourth-best record in the West at 42-27 with less than a month remaining in the regular season.