Ben Bentil

Forward Ben Bentil Signs With French Team

Forward Ben Bentil has signed overseas with Champagne Chalons-Reims, Chris Reichert of The Step Back tweets via a press release from the French club.

Bentil had a brief stay in the NBA last season. The 6’9” Bentil appeared in three games with the Mavericks after signing a 10-day contract in February, but didn’t score a point in 10 minutes of action. He wasn’t offered another 10-day deal.

The Pistons brought him in for a June mini-camp but didn’t sign him.

Bentil played a couple of months in China last season before rejoining the G-League’s Fort Wayne Mad Ants. He played 22 games for the Pacers’ affiliate last season, averaging 12.1 PPG and 4.5 RPG.

Bentil was an early entrant to the 2016 draft, exiting Providence after his sophomore season. He was drafted in the second round with the 51st overall pick by the Celtics. Bentil received a partially guaranteed contract but was cut during training camp. The Pacers briefly picked him up in October and gave him $50K before waiving him.

Pistons Notes: Downtown Move, Kennard, FA Workouts

The Detroit City Council voted on Tuesday in favor of several key agreements related to the Pistons’ move downtown, as Christine Ferretti and Jennifer Chambers of The Detroit News report. However, while Tuesday’s votes finalized approvals for the Pistons’ new practice facility and headquarters, there are more roadblocks that will need to be cleared before the club’s move to the Little Caesars arena is fully approved.

On June 20, the Detroit city council is scheduled to vote on the issuance of $34.5MM in proposed taxpayer-funded DDA bonds. Shortly after Tuesday’s city council session took place though, a federal judge granted a June 19 lawsuit that seeks to halt that June 20 vote, per Louis Aguilar of The Detroit News. As Aguilar explains, that lawsuit seeks to allow Detroit and Wayne County residents to vote on whether taxpayer money should be put toward the new arena and team facilities.

As the Pistons wait for resolution to the legal battle over their potential new arena, here are a few more items related to the team:

Mavericks Sign Jarrod Uthoff To 10-Day Deal

MARCH 9: The Mavericks have signed Uthoff to a 10-day contract, the team officially announced today in a press release.

MARCH 8: The Mavericks intend to fill one of their open roster spots by signing Jarrod Uthoff to a 10-day contract, according to Shams Charania of The Vertical (via Twitter). When Uthoff finalizes his deal, he’ll become the fifth player to ink a 10-day contract with the Mavs this season.

[RELATED: Hoops Rumors’ 10-day contract tracker]

Uthoff, 23, went undrafted of the University of Iowa and received a training camp invite from the Raptors last summer. After failing to earn a spot on Toronto’s regular season roster, the 6’9″ forward headed to the D-League, where he has played 35 total games for the Raptors 905 and Fort Wayne Mad Ants.

Since joining Indiana’s D-League affiliate in Fort Wayne, Uthoff has thrived, averaging 17.1 PPG, 9.1 RPG, and 1.5 BPG to go along with a red-hot .548/.500/.909 shooting line in 11 games. Chris Reichert of The Step Back ranked Uthoff sixth on his list of D-League prospects earlier this week, writing that the former Iowa standout has been playing like a top-five D-League player. In Reichert’s view, Uthoff is an NBA-caliber player and “some team is going to get really lucky when they realize it.”

The Mavs may be that team — Dallas has already struck gold with NBADL call-up Yogi Ferrell this season, and Quinn Cook has played well for the club since signing a 10-day deal at the end of February.

Cook and Ben Bentil both had their 10-day contracts with the Mavs expire overnight, and the club’s agreement with Uthoff suggests at least one of those two players won’t be back. Bentil is likely the odd man out, since he has played less than Cook and his skill-set overlaps more with Uthoff’s. We’ll see if the Mavs announce a second 10-day pact for Cook at the same time that they confirm Uthoff’s deal.

Mavs Sign Ben Bentil To 10-Day Contract

FEBRUARY 26: The signing is official, tweets Earl K. Sneed of

FEBRUARY 24: The Mavericks have signed Ben Bentil to a 10-day contract, according to Marc Stein of ESPN (Twitter link). Bentil, 21, had recently rejoined the Fort Wayne Mad Ants of the D-League after playing 11 games in China.

According to Stein, Dallas plans to have completed deals with Bentil and Quinn Cook by Sunday. Bentil, who can fill in at the 3 or 4, was selected over fellow D-League standouts Manny Harris and Pierre Jackson (Twitter links). Jackson had already signed two 10-day contracts with Dallas this year, and would have needed to be signed through the season.

This has been the second contract agreement with a D-League player today for Dallas, as the team also struck a deal with Cook to a 10-day contract this afternoon.

And-Ones: Davis, Harris, Blair, Bentil

Anthony Davis left today’s game versus the Pacers after injuring his right hip and left thumb. The X-rays he received on both areas came back negative, according to the team’s Twitter feed. Davis hurt his left hip last week against the Knicks, which forced him to miss the ensuing contest against the Nets. The Pelicans won’t play again until Wednesday, so the team will have a couple of days to evaluate Davis’ latest ailment. The big man has only missed three games this season, though he missed parts of six other contests because of various injuries.

Here’s more from around the league:

  • Gary Harris injured his right ankle today and he’s not expected to play on Tuesday when the Nuggets take on the Lakers, Christopher Dempsey of The Denver Post relays. Injuries have prevented Harris from suiting up in 21 of the team’s 38 games this season.
  • The Texas Legends, the D-League affiliate of the Mavs, have acquired DeJuan Blair, according to Chris Reichert of The Step Back (Twitter link). Blair played for the Wizards last season before the team traded him to the Suns in the Markieff Morris deal. Phoenix waived the power forward just days after the trade.
  • Ben Bentil has rejoined the Fort Wayne Mad Ants of the D-League, Reichert reports (Twitter link). Bentil played for the Mad Ants earlier in the season before taking a deal in China.

Ben Bentil To Play In China

After appearing in just a single D-League game for the Fort Wayne Mad Ants, rookie power forward Ben Bentil is headed to China as an injury replacement, according to Adam Johnson of D-League Digest, who adds (via Twitter) that Fort Wayne is expecting Bentil back later in the season.

It has been an eventful offseason for Bentil, who left Providence after his sophomore year to enter the NBA draft, then was selected 51st overall by the Celtics. Boston, however, had a crowded roster and didn’t have room for Bentil — the team hoped to send him to its D-League affiliate in Maine after giving him a $250K guarantee. Instead, Bentil briefly signed with the Pacers – who gave him a $50K guarantee – and joined Indiana’s D-League affiliate in Fort Wayne.

In his first and only contest with the Mad Ants, Bentil led the club to a blowout victory with a team-high 27 points and 10 rebounds in 45 minutes. Just a few days later though, it appears he has received a more enticing offer from a Chinese team.

Terms of Bentil’s new deal aren’t known, but if it’s a standard CBA contract, he’ll be in China until at least February, and potentially longer than that if his team makes a postseason run. Dakota Schmidt of Ridiculous Upside tweets that Fort Wayne expects Bentil back in about two months, so the 21-year-old may not play the full CBA season.

Because he was waived by Celtics, Bentil’s NBA rights are no longer held by Boston, meaning he could be picked up by any of the league’s 30 teams upon his return if he impresses overseas.

NBA D-League Affiliate Players For 2016/17

Throughout the offseason, and in the weeks leading up to the start of the regular season, NBA teams are permitted to carry 20 players, but that total must be cut down to 15 in advance of opening night. However, up to four players waived by teams before the season can be designated as affiliate players and assigned to their D-League squads.

The players have some say in the decision — if they’d prefer to sign with a team overseas, or if they get an opportunity with another NBA club, they’re free to turn down their team’s request to have them play in the D-League. Most NBA and international teams have fairly set rosters by late October though, so having the opportunity to continue playing in the same system is appealing to many of those preseason cuts. Especially since they’ll maintain NBA free agency while they play in the D-League.

There are a few other rules related to D-League affiliate players. A player whose returning rights are held by a D-League team can’t be an affiliate player for another club, which is why undrafted free agents from the current year are commonly signed and assigned. Additionally, an affiliate player must have signed with his team during the current league year, which explains why we often see players signed and quickly waived in the days leading up to the regular season. And, of course, not every NBA team has a D-League affiliate, so clubs like the Hawks, Nuggets, or Clippers have no place to send affiliate players.

With all that in mind, here are the NBA D-League affiliate players to start the 2016/17 season:

Austin Spurs (San Antonio Spurs)

Canton Charge (Cleveland Cavaliers)

Delaware 87ers (Philadelphia 76ers)

Read more

Eastern Notes: McGruder, Bentil, Kidd-Gilchrist

 The Heat announcing that Rodney McGruder made the team’s regular season roster may have surprised some around the league, but coach Erik Spoelstra loves the player’s work ethic and grit, writes Manny Navarro of The Miami Herald. “You love his perseverance, his fortitude, the grit,” Spoelstra said. “These things you can’t teach, you have to go through life experiences to develop it. The way he came through is almost text book in how you would want to develop a player — go overseas, learn how to handle more responsibilities and then start the process of training camp and summer league. Then, play a season and a half with our D-League team under our staff and really develop there and then finish off with another summer league, a full summer of development, a training camp, all the way to the 11th hour. And he just pushed through and persevered and worked on just getting better as a basketball player. You really root for guys like that. By the end of it, he really felt like a veteran Miami Heat player through all those experiences. But a lot of guys don’t have the type of makeup to be able to go through all those experiences without getting discouraged.

Here’s more from the East:

  • Ben Bentil got a solid partial guarantee of $250K when he signed with the Celtics earlier this year, and after he was cut by Boston, he received some more guaranteed money from a second time. Per Chris Reichert of Upside and Motor (via Twitter), the Pacers – who will send Bentil to their D-League affiliate in Fort Wayne – guaranteed $50K of his salary for the few hours he spent on the NBA roster.
  • Hornets small forward Michael Kidd-Gilchrist is tired of questions regarding his twice injured shoulder and insists he is 100% healthy entering the season, Rick Bonnell of The Charlotte Observer writes. “I don’t want to talk about my injury anymore,” Kidd-Gilchrist said. “I’ve been back to my old self ever since I started playing again. I feed off my energy. That’s always how I’ve played. My goal is to be healthy the whole season. When I get to that point, I’ll say ‘Yes! Let’s Go!’
  • The relationship between LeBron James and Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert has come a long way over the past few seasons, Dave McMenamin of notes. “I think everybody learns every day in the decisions they make and the things they do,” Gilbert said. “It was just a whole different feeling from Day 1 [when James came back in 2014]. Keep in mind that we just had one bad night in five years that we were here with LeBron — remember the first two [years James played in Cleveland], Gordon Gund ran and owned the team. But we never had a bad day until the way it ended. And as bad as it was, it was one day, it was one night and everybody is a grown man and obviously we focused on the job here. And sometimes things happen for a reason, right? You just never know it at the time.

Luke Adams contributed to this post.

Pacers Sign, Waive Ben Bentil

2:12pm: A few hours after signing him, the Pacers have waived Bentil, the team announced in a press release. Indiana’s roster is now back to 15 players, making it regular-season-ready.

12:16pm: Pacers head coach Nate McMillan confirmed that Bentil is expected to join Indiana’s D-League affiliate, the Fort Wayne Mad Ants, tweets Scott Agness of

10:26am: After getting down to 15 players over the weekend, the Pacers are back up to 16, announcing in a press release that they’ve signed rookie forward Ben Bentil to a contract. Indiana’s interest in Bentil was reported late on Saturday night by Mark Porcaro.

[RELATED: Pacers waive Jeremy Evans, Julyan Stone]

The 51st overall pick in this year’s draft, Bentil averaged 21.1 PPG and 7.7 RPG at Providence last season, and signed a three-year contract with the Celtics as one of the team’s six draft picks. Although he received a strong partial guarantee of $250K from Boston, Bentil always seemed to be on the outside looking in with the Celtics, who had a crowded roster this fall. He was waived by the C’s on Friday, and a report indicated he’d look to sign with another NBA team rather than joining Boston’s D-League affiliate.

While it’s possible the Pacers will keep Bentil on their 15-man roster and cut someone else with a guaranteed salary, it’s far more likely that the club will waive the 21-year-old later today and assign him to the Fort Wayne Mad Ants. With that $250K guarantee from the Celtics in hand, Bentil can afford to spend some time in the D-League, especially if he sees a potential path to a call-up.

Pacers Interested In Ben Bentil?

Rookie forward Ben Bentil, who was waived by the Celtics on Friday, has an offer to join the Pacers’ D-League affiliate in Fort Wayne, tweets freelancer and Hoops Rumors contributor Mark Porcaro.

The 6’9″ Bentil was taken 51st overall out of Providence in this year’s draft. He appeared in three preseason games for Boston, averaging 5.0 points and 4.3 rebounds.

Bentil is on waivers, so he could be claimed by the Pacers or any other team. He reportedly will look for an opportunity with another franchise if he isn’t claimed and is not interested in rejoining the Celtics as part of their D-League affiliate. Boston signed Bentil to a three-year contract with a $250K guarantee.