Patrick McCaw

And-Ones: McCaw, Cole, LeBron, D. Whitehead, League Pass

Team USA isn’t filled with stars for this summer’s competition, but their absence could help players like Patrick McCaw and Norris Cole get another shot at the NBA, writes Tim Reynolds of The Associated Press. They’re part of the American team participating in the FIBA AmeriCup tournament, which begins Friday in Brazil.

“I think it’s more about representing the USA for me right now,” said McCaw, who played for three teams in five years and won championship rings in his first three NBA seasons. “I want to make it back to the NBA. I know that’s a process. And I know one day, whenever, next week, next month, next year, when it’s supposed to happen, it’ll happen. But right now, I’m just focusing on this USA, wearing these three letters, giving my all to this team and representing the United States of America.”

The odds may be even longer for Cole, who went to the NBA Finals with the Heat during his first three seasons in the league. Cole has been out of the league since 2017 and has been trying to revive his career with a long list of overseas teams.

“I still have the ability,” said Cole, who will turn 34 in October. “God has still blessed me with the ability. I still have the fire, the hunger and I still feel like I have something to prove, things that I would like to accomplish as a player. That feeling of winning a championship, the mission, the goal, the work to try to get to that point again, that’s what drives me as a competitor. And I want that feeling again.”

There’s more news from around the basketball world:

  • LeBron James talks to Chris Ballard of Sports Illustrated about his desire to eventually play in the NBA with his teenage sons. Bronny is a high school senior and will be eligible for the draft in 2024, but Bryce is only 15 and can’t get to the league until 2027, raising questions of whether LeBron has that many years left. “I feel like I could play for quite a while,” he said. “So it’s all up to my body, but more importantly, my mind. If my mind can stay sharp and fresh and motivated, then the sky’s not even a limit for me. I can go beyond that. But we shall see.”
  • Duke’s Dariq Whitehead, projected as a top-10 pick in next year’s draft, had surgery on Tuesday for a fracture in his right foot, per Myron Medcalf of ESPN. Whitehead is out indefinitely and the school says he will return sometime “this fall.”
  • The NBA has reduced the price of League Pass by more than half for the upcoming season, according to Jacob Feldman of Yahoo. The standard price has been cut from $230 to $100, and the premium package has fallen from $280 to $130.

Team USA Announces Camp Roster For AmeriCup

At the same time that 24 European nations will be competing in this year’s long-awaited EuroBasket tournament, Team USA will be going for gold in the 2022 AmeriCup, another event that hasn’t taken place in five years. The U.S. team won the 2017 AmeriCup and was preparing to defend its title in 2021 before the event was pushed back a year due to the delay of the Tokyo Olympics.

With the 2022 AmeriCup around the corner, Team USA has announced the 15 players who will take part in training camp from August 23-27 in Las Vegas before the squad chooses a 12-man roster for the September event. Those 15 players are as follows:

While not every player on Team USA’s training camp roster has NBA experience, many do, including Meeks (539 regular season games), Cole (360), McCaw (199), Clark (170), Johnson (103), Mason (103), and Pargo (86). Sword, Cheatham, Lamb, and Zimmerman have also made brief NBA appearances.

The U.S. team will be coached by Jazz assistant Alex Jensen.

The AmeriCup, also known as the Americas Basketball Championship, used to be part of the qualifying process for the Olympics and the FIBA World Cup, but now it’s a stand-alone event.

This year’s tournament will take place from September 2-11 in Recife, Brazil. Sixteen teams have been divided into four groups of four teams apiece. After each team plays three round robin games within its group, the top two teams in each group – along with the two best third-place teams – will move onto the quarterfinals.

Team USA will be seeking its eighth overall AmeriCup gold medal and its first back-to-back golds since winning the event in 1997 and 1999.

Jazz Notes: Far From Contending, Mini-Camp, Prospect Workouts

All four of the 2021/22 Conference Finalists — the Warriors, Mavericks, Celtics and Heat — proved how far the Jazz are from contending for a championship, Sarah Todd of The Deseret News opines.

Todd notes that head coach Quin Snyder, whose status remains uncertain for next season, said Utah was very close to competing at the highest level at his end-of-season press conference.

This year, I thought that our record didn’t necessarily reflect what we could do in the playoffs. I felt like we were this close to having a spark and kicking it in and finding that unity, that extra secret sauce, and taking off. And obviously that didn’t happen,” Snyder said, per Eric Walden of The Salt Lake Tribune.

Todd disagrees. Even assuming the Jazz had advanced past Dallas in the first round (they lost in six games), Todd is doubtful the Jazz would have been able to take the Suns to seven games in the second round, as Dallas was able to do.

She also doesn’t think the Jazz would have fared any better than the Mavs did against the Warriors in the Western Conference Finals, if they’d gotten past Phoenix.

Ultimately, the Todd believes the flawed roster was too much to overcome, and Utah’s front office will have a tough job improving it this summer.

Here’s more from Utah:

Patrick McCaw Signs G League Deal

Veteran Patrick McCaw has signed a NBA G League contract and will be suiting up for the Delaware Blue Coats, the Sixers‘ affiliate, according to Michael Scotto of HoopsHype (Twitter link).

McCaw, 26, was the 38th overall pick of the 2016 draft by the Bucks. He was traded to the Warriors on draft night, and spent his first two seasons with the club, winning two championships in the process.

He had a peculiar path after that, as he turned down a qualifying offer from Golden State in the summer of 2018 and a subsequent two-year, $5.2MM offer with a guarantee on the first year. That offer would have paid him substantially more than he ended up earning with the Cavs and Raptors during the 2018/19 season. McCaw explained that he didn’t want to re-sign with the Warriors because he was seeking “a new opportunity.”

McCaw’s stint with the Cavs in 2018/19 was brief, appearing in just three games before being waived, then signed with the Raptors and won his third championship in three seasons in a limited, reserve role. However, he struggled with left knee injuries the past few seasons with Toronto, and was waived in April of last year. He has been a free agent ever since.

In 199 career games with the three teams, McCaw holds averages of 3.8 points, 1.6 rebounds and 1.4 assists in 16.9 minutes per contest. He’s a rangy, versatile defender, but isn’t a threat on offense.

Raptors Release Patrick McCaw

APRIL 9: The Raptors have officially waived McCaw, the team announced in a press release.


APRIL 8: The Raptors intend to waive injured swingman Patrick McCaw, Shams Charania of The Athletic tweets.

Blake Murphy of The Athletic adds (Twitter link) that McCaw has appeared in just five games for Toronto since March 2020. Left knee injuries have limited his availability, as he has had surgery to address the issues twice while with the Raptors.

The 6’7″ shooting guard/small forward out of UNLV was selected with the No. 38 pick in the 2016 NBA draft, and spent his first two seasons as a bench contributor for the Warriors on consecutive title-winning teams before logging time on the Cavaliers and Raptors.

Between his years spent with the Warriors and Raptors, the defensively-inclined McCaw has won three championships. Most recently, McCaw’s knee problems have sidelined the 25-year-old since March 22.

By waiving him now, the Raptors are giving McCaw time to sign on with another team and remain eligible to play in the postseason, though whether or not a team will take a chance on him at present remains an open question. Tomorrow is the last day a player can be released and retain his postseason eligibility.

Raptors’ Starters Siakam, VanVleet Cleared To Practice

The Raptors, who have been decimated by the league’s health and safety protocols, are getting closer to having their team back at full strength.

Starters Pascal Siakam and Fred VanVleet, as well as reserves Malachi Flynn and Patrick McCaw, have been cleared to practice on Tuesday, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski tweets. The Raptors play at Detroit on Wednesday.

That leaves only OG Anunoby remaining under the COVID-19 restrictions. He’s listed as out for Wednesday’s game by the team, according to Blake Murphy of The Athletic (Twitter link). VanVleet is listed as doubtful to play, while Siakam, Flynn, McCaw are listed as questionable.

Toronto’s coaching staff, including Nick Nurse, were also placed under those protocols during the week leading up to the All-Star break.

The team’s fortunes have nosedived while playing shorthanded. The Raptors have lost five straight to fall five games below .500.

Injury/Protocol Notes: Reddish, Durant, Thompson, Raptors

Hawks forward Cam Reddish reportedly received a PRP injection earlier this month and was ruled out for at least two weeks at that time, per general manager Travis Schlenk. However, it sounds like Reddish’s absence will extend well beyond that window.

According to Shams Charania of The Athletic, Reddish has an initial recovery timeline of four-to-six weeks following the non-surgical procedure to address his right Achilles soreness. Even if we assume one of those weeks has already passed, it still sounds like we won’t see Reddish back on the court until sometime in April.

Here are a few more updates from around the NBA on players who are injured or in the league’s health and safety protocols:

  • Nets star Kevin Durant is expected to miss another week or two as the team takes a cautious approach to his left hamstring strain, sources tell Charania. Durant has now been on the shelf for over a month, but it hasn’t slowed down Brooklyn at all — the team has won 10 of its last 11 games.
  • As we relayed on Sunday, Warriors sharpshooter Klay Thompson is aiming to return early next season from his Achilles tear. However, he admitted that he’s not expecting to look like his old self right away. I’ll be honest, I don’t expect to come back balls-to-the-wall, 38 minutes a night, guarding the best player, running around 100 screens,” Thompson said (video link via Anthony Slater of The Athletic). “I’m going to get to that point. I guarantee that. But… it might be 20 minutes to start the season… We’ll see where I’m at. This is usually a 12-month process with the Achilles and that’ll take me to mid-November.”
  • Raptors head coach Nick Nurse expects his five players in the health and safety protocols – Fred VanVleet, Pascal Siakam, OG Anunoby, Patrick McCaw, and Malachi Flynn – to all return at some point this week, according to Doug Smith of The Toronto Star, who says some of those players are out of quarantine and doing work in the team’s gym.

Atlantic Notes: Raptors, Barrett, Smart, Rose, Knicks

The Raptors were severely short-handed prior to the All-Star break due to the league’s health and safety protocols and those issues will carry over to this weekend. Starters Pascal Siakam, Fred VanVleet and OG Anunoby, as well as Patrick McCaw and Malachi Flynn, won’t play against Charlotte on Saturday, Josh Lewenberg of TSN Sports tweets. They’re also expected to miss Sunday’s game against Chicago.

We have more from the Atlantic Division:

  • Knicks guard RJ Barrett plans to play for Team Canada in the Olympic qualifying tournament this summer, Mike Vorkunov of The Athletic tweets. Barrett is optimistic about Team Canada’s prospects. “We got an All-NBA team,” Barrett said.
  • Marcus Smart‘s return from a calf strain provides the Celtics with more offensive versatility, according to Jared Weiss of The Athletic. The Celtics can now put four scorers on the floor who can create plays off the dribble. Smart also solves many of the team’s spacing issues with his hard cuts to the basket, Weiss adds.
  • The Knicks, who acquired Derrick Rose last month, will continue to look for upgrades before the trade deadline, coach Tom Thibodeau told Vorkunov and other media members. “I have a strong bias towards good players,” he said. “I know (the front office is) looking at all the possibilities. If something makes sense for us, we’ll do it.” Rose will miss the team’s game against the Thunder on Saturday due to the league’s health and safety protocols, Vorkunov tweets.

Raptors Remain Short-Handed Due To COVID-19

A week off for the All-Star break didn’t resolve the Raptors‘ coronavirus situation, tweets Josh Lewenberg of TSN Sports. Fred VanVleetPascal SiakamOG AnunobyMalachi Flynn and Patrick McCaw all remain in the league’s health and safety protocols and won’t be available for Thursday’s game with the Hawks.

Toronto’s issues with the virus began in late February when a member of the coaching staff reportedly tested positive, forcing head coach Nick Nurse and most of his assistants into contact tracing. Assistant coach Sergio Scariolo, who was in quarantine at the time after coaching the Spanish national team, has been filling in as head coach ever since. There’s no update on the status of the coaches, but Lewenberg suggests that more information may be available after practice later today (Twitter link).

Siakam, who returned an inconclusive rapid test at the same time, has been in the protocol for 12 days, Lewenburg adds (via Twitter). The other four players have been sidelined for eight days each.

The Raptors’ February 28 game against the Bulls was postponed because Toronto didn’t have enough eligible players, and a game against the Pistons was rescheduled from March 2 to March 3. Currently in eighth place in the East, the Raptors are 1-2 since their COVID-19 problems began.

Raptors Notes: COVID Absences, Depth, Lowry, Harris

After playing without several key rotation players on Wednesday night vs. Detroit due to the NBA’s health and safety protocols, the Raptors will be missing those same players on Thursday in Boston. As Tim Bontemps of ESPN tweets, the club officially announced that Fred VanVleet, Pascal Siakam, OG Anunoby, Malachi Flynn, and Patrick McCaw remain in the protocols and have been ruled out for tonight’s game.

Kyle Lowry and Norman Powell, the only starters unaffected by the protocols, combined to score 57 points on 19-of-31 shooting on Wednesday, but the rest of the Raptors contributed just 48 total points on 15-of-46 shooting. Toronto will need more from its supporting cast on Thursday if the club hopes to knock off the Celtics.

Here’s more on the Raptors:

  • While any team would struggle without three of its starters, the Raptors’ blowout loss to the lowly Pistons on Wednesday shone a light on the team’s lack of reliable depth, writes Michael Grange of Sportsnet.ca. The absences of key players provided a chance for one or two role part-timers to step up and make a case for more minutes, but no one really seized that opportunity, Grange adds.
  • There are compelling reasons both for and against trading Kyle Lowry at the deadline, according to Eric Koreen of The Athletic, who explores the dilemma facing the Raptors and notes that the team is under pressure to get the decision right.
  • The Raptors have reassigned rookie guard Jalen Harris to the Raptors 905 at Walt Disney World after recalling him for Wednesday’s game, tweets Blake Murphy of The Athletic. Harris now should have a chance to clear the G League bubble’s quarantine protocols in time to play for Toronto’s affiliate in the NBAGL postseason tournament next week.