Axel Toupane

Warriors Waive L.J. Figueroa, Axel Toupane

The Warriors announced on Saturday (via Twitter) that they have waived L.J. Figueroa and Axel Toupane, both of whom signed Exhibit 10 contracts with the club. Both players are likely to play for the team’s G League affiliate this season.

Figueroa appeared in one preseason game, while Toupane signed with the club on Friday. Golden State’s roster has now been trimmed to 15 players — including guard Chris Chiozza on a two-way contract.

Prior to signing with Golden State, Figueroa went unselected in the 2021 NBA Draft. Toupane, for his part, has made stops with the Nuggets, Bucks, Pelicans and various overseas clubs during his career.

Warriors Waive Gary Payton II, Avery Bradley, Two Others

The Warriors made several roster cuts late on Friday night following their final preseason game, announcing in a press release that they’ve cut guards Gary Payton II, Avery Bradley, and Mychal Mulder, as well as big man Jordan Bell.

The four players had been vying for the 15th spot on Golden State’s regular season roster. Instead, it seems the team has decided to keep that spot open — at least for now.

As Anthony Slater of The Athletic explains, if the Warriors had decided to carry a 15th man, it almost certainly would’ve been Payton. In fact, there’s a possibility the club could bring back the 28-year-old on a new deal if he clears waivers, according to Slater.

The language in Payton’s contract called for him to receive a $659K partial guarantee if he had made the opening-night roster. The Warriors, who are far over the luxury tax line, would face a tax penalty worth several million dollars if they were to commit to that partial guarantee, which they weren’t prepared to do.

According to Slater, if Golden State re-signs Payton, it would likely be to a non-guaranteed deal that doesn’t include any trigger dates, so the team would essentially be paying the guard by the day until the league-wide guarantee date in January.

Bradley, Mulder, and Bell, meanwhile, figure to be on the lookout for new jobs if and when they clear waivers on Monday. All three players have multiple years of NBA experience on their résumés and Bradley, in particular, will be among the more accomplished veterans hitting the market this week. However, many teams around the NBA don’t have the flexibility – or the desire – to make last-minute additions to their 15-man regular season rosters.

It’s worth noting that Golden State does still have an open two-way contract slot. However, of the four players released today, only Mulder qualifies to sign a two-way deal. Perhaps that’s a possibility if he goes unclaimed on waivers.

In addition to their four cuts, the Warriors also announced that they’ve signed free agent forward Axel Toupane. That move was almost certainly made for G League purposes — Toupane will likely be cut on Saturday.

Bucks Sign Axel Toupane To Two-Way Contract

MARCH 15: The Bucks officially signed Toupane to his two-way deal on Sunday, per a team press release.

MARCH 13: The Bucks will sign swingman Axel Toupane to a two-way contract, tweets Shams Charania of The Athletic.

The 28-year-old played for Santa Cruz during the just-completed G League season, averaging 17.9 points, 8.1 rebounds and 3.3 assists in nine games. He was in training camp with the Warriors before being waived in December.

Toupane has previous NBA experience, playing 21 games for the Nuggets during the 2015/16 season, and two games each for the Bucks and Pelicans in 2016/17. He had been playing overseas before joining the G League this year.

Milwaukee has a two-way slot open after waiving Jaylen Adams last week. A report prior to the All-Star break suggested that Myles Powell would fill that slot, but that deal was never made official.

Warriors Waive Kaleb Wesson, Axel Toupane, Dwayne Sutton

The Warriors have officially released three training camp invitees, announcing today in a press release that they’ve requested waivers on forwards Kaleb Wesson, Axel Toupane, and Dwayne Sutton.

Wesson, Toupane, and Sutton were all on Exhibit 10 contracts and weren’t expected to make Golden State’s 15-man regular season roster, so today’s announcement doesn’t come as a major surprise. Sutton was viewed as a candidate to have his Exhibit 10 pact converted into a two-way deal, but it appears that won’t happen after all.

All three players are good bets to join the Santa Cruz Warriors, Golden State’s G League affiliate, assuming the club takes part in the proposed NBAGL bubble, as is expected.

The Warriors now have 17 players on their preseason roster. Since 16 of those players are on standard contracts and just one (Nico Mannion) is on a two-way deal, they’ll need to make at least one more roster move before they’re set for the regular season. Juan Toscano-Anderson, one of three players with a non-guaranteed salary, may be the odd man out.

Golden State will reportedly sign Jeremy Lin as well, though he’s ticketed for Santa Cruz and will be released shortly after inking his deal.

Warriors Fill Out 20-Man Camp Roster

The Warriors have signed Axel ToupaneDwayne Sutton and Kaleb Wesson, according to the RealGM transactions log.

Toupane, a forward from France, and Sutton, a swingman from Louisville, received Exhibit 10 contracts. Their invitations to camp include the possibility of earning a bonus if they joins the team’s G League affiliate in Santa Cruz.

The 28-year-old Toupane has previous NBA experience, signing with the Nuggets late in the 2015/16 season. He appeared in 21 games for Denver, averaging 3.6 points and 1.5 rebounds per night, but was waived before the next season began. He had brief stays with the Bucks and Pelicans in 2016/17, getting into two games with each team.

Sutton is a candidate to earn a two-way contract, since Golden State still has one of those slots available. The 6’5″ 23-year-old Sutton was an All-ACC Honorable Mention with the Cardinals last season.

Wesson, an undrafted big man out of Ohio State, received a training camp deal that likely also includes Exhibit 10 language. He averaged 12.9 PPG, 7.0 RPG, 1.6 APG, 0.8 BPG and 0.8 SPG in three seasons with the Buckeyes. Wesson is also a candidate for the two-way spot.

Axel Toupane Will Get Exhibit 10 Deal With Warriors

The Warriors will sign French forward Axel Toupane to an Exhibit 10 contract, tweets Anthony Slater of The Athletic. Toupane will receive an invitation to training camp, with the possibility of earning a bonus if he joins the team’s G League affiliate.

The 28-year-old has previous NBA experience, signing with the Nuggets late in the 2015/16 season. He appeared in 21 games for Denver, averaging 3.6 points and 1.5 rebounds per night, but was waived before the next season began. He had brief stays with the Bucks and Pelicans in 2016/17, getting into two games with each team.

Toupane has played overseas since leaving the NBA and was most recently with SIG Strasbourg in France. He has also played for the French national team.

World Cup Updates: Lithuania, Joseph, Nigeria, France

The Lithuanian national team has announced its roster for the 2019 World Cup, according to Donatas Urbonas, who tweets that the 12-man squad will include Grizzlies center Jonas Valanciunas and Pacers big man Domantas Sabonis in the frontcourt. Former Knicks forward Mindaugas Kuzminskas is also on the roster.

Lithuania is viewed as a contender to make a deep run in this year’s tournament, but it won’t have an easy path to even make it out of the first round. The Lithuanian national team is part of a group that also includes Australia, Canada, and Senegal — only two of those clubs will advance to the round of 16.

Here’s more on the 2019 World Cup, which will tip off in just four days in China:

And-Ones: Age Limit, Summer League, Hibbert, Toupane

As we’ve relayed previously, NBA commissioner Adam Silver announced during an NBA Board of Governors meetings in Las Vegas last week that the NBA is ready to make changes to its age limit, thereby potentially allowing high school seniors the opportunity to jump straight to the NBA once again.

However, according to Jonathan Givony of ESPN, teams have been told privately by league officials not to expect a change to the age limit until the 2022 NBA Draft at the earliest.

Assuming the 2022 NBA Draft allows high school players to jump directly to the NBA, players entering their freshman year of high school this fall will be the first ones to benefit from this potential rule change.

As for any trades that could be affected by this, no team has as yet traded an unprotected 2022 first-rounder, and the only one that could potentially change hands at this point was sent by the Mavericks to the Hawks in order to move up in this year’s draft and select Luka Doncic.

It will be interesting to see whether teams will be wary of trading draft picks in 2022 and beyond before a final ruling is made on this issue.

Here are a few more odds and ends from around the NBA:

  • In a Q&A piece for ESPN, several different writers spoke about who they believed to be the standouts and disappointments from this year’s NBA Summer League. Wendell Carter, Kevin Knox, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, and Deandre Ayton were among the rookies recognized, while John Collins and Josh Hart were two players who were mentioned as probably too good to have even played in this year’s summer league.
  • In an interview with TMZ Sports, former NBA player Roy Hibbert says that he is done playing professional basketball, explaining that “It’s just time to move on.” Hibbert, 31, was named an All-Star as recently as 2014, but saw his impact dwindle over his last few years in the league as he got older and the game got smaller and quicker.
  • French forward Axel Toupane, who appeared in 25 total NBA regular season games in 2016 and 2017, has signed with EuroLeague club Olympiacos B.C. after helping lead Zalgiris Kaunas to the EuroLeague Final Four last season, reports Emiliano Carchia of Sportando.

And-Ones: Blatt, Trade Details, Toupane

After interviewing for multiple NBA head coaching jobs this offseason, David Blatt has reached an agreement that will keep him in Europe. As Orazio Cauchi of Sportando relays, Blatt has signed a two-year contract to coach Greek powerhouse Olympiacos.

The former head coach of the Cavaliers, Blatt has spent most of his career overseas. Over the last two seasons he served as the head coach for Turkish team Darussafaka, and prior to his stint in Cleveland, he coached Maccabi Tel Aviv in Israel. Now, Blatt – who met with the Bucks and Knicks this spring before they hired Mike Budenholzer and David Fizdale, respectively – will continue his coaching career in Greece.

Here are a few more odds and ends from across the NBA:

  • Eric Pincus of Basketball Insiders has the details on a couple trades that went down on draft night, reporting that the Rockets bought the No. 52 overall pick from the Jazz for $1.5MM and the Trail Blazers sent the Kings $1.5MM in their deal for Gary Trent Jr.‘s draft rights (Twitter links).
  • Axel Toupane, who appeared in 25 total NBA regular season games in 2016 and 2017, is working out privately for NBA clubs this week, reports Shams Charania of Yahoo Sports (Twitter link). A 6’7″ wing, Toupane played for Zalgiris Kaunas in 2017/18, helping lead the Lithuanian club to a spot in the EuroLeague Final Four.
  • In an excellent breakdown for, Bobby Marks previews the coming offseason for all 30 teams, detailing each club’s key decisions and cap situation.

Axel Toupane Will Play In Lithuania

Axel Toupane, who was waived Tuesday by the Pelicans, has signed with Zalgiris Kaunas in Lithuania, according to Dario Destri of Sportando.

The 6’7″ swingman agreed to a non-guaranteed minimum salary deal with New Orleans late last season and appeared in two games with the Pelicans. He also played two games for the Bucks on a 10-day contract in February. Toupane spent most of the season with Raptors 905, Toronto’s affiliate in the G League.

Tuesday was a salary guarantee date for Toupane, whose partial guarantee would have risen from $25K to $200K if he had been kept on the Pelicans’ roster.