Christian Watford

Eastern Notes: D-League, Jenkins, Magic

Chris Babb, Tim Frazier, Rodney McGruder and Christian Watford are joining the Celtics D-League affiliate, the team announced (Twitter links). The Celtics are using their ability to retain the D-League rights to up to four camp cuts to keep Frazier, McGruder and Watford out of the D-League draft, but they don’t have to do so with Babb, since he played for Boston’s D-League team last season.

Here’s more from the east:

  • The Magic‘s D-League team has signed Seth Curry, Peyton Siva, Kadeem Batts and Drew Crawford, the club announced, The Magic waived the foursome last week.
  • The first two years of Anderson Varejao‘s extension with the Cavs are fully guaranteed with the third year being a team option, Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports reports (Twitter link).
  • Varejao will make $9,638,554 the first year; $10,361,446 the second year of the deal, with $9.36MM guaranteed; and the third season is set at $10MM,  Eric Pincus of Basketball Insiders reports (Twitter link). If Varejao is on the Cavs‘ roster past August 1st, 2017 then $4.5MM of the third year will become guaranteed, adds Marc Stein of (Twitter link).
  • John Jenkins admitted he’s upset that the Hawks decided to decline his rookie scale team option for 2015/16, but he called it “part of the game” and a potential blessing in disguise, observes Chris Vivlamore of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
  • While it’s still a bit too early in the season for any coaches to truly be on the hot seat just yet, Fran Blinebury of takes a look at eight coaches who are under the most pressure this year, including David Blatt (Cavs), Mike Budenholzer (Hawks), and Derek Fisher (Knicks).

Chuck Myron contributed to this post.

C’s Waive McGruder, Murphy, Frazier, Watford

MONDAY, 3:43pm: The Celtics have officially waived McGruder, Murphy, Frazier and Watford, the team announced via press release.

SUNDAY, 10:22pm: In addition to the previously mentioned trio, Frazier has now also been waived, according to the RealGM transactions log. The team has made no formal announcement yet.

10:25pm: The Celtics have waived McGruder, Murphy and Watford, according to the RealGM transactions log, though the team has yet to make a formal announcement. Frazier has not been waived yet, though all indications are that he will be tomorrow, as Marc D’Amico of tweets.

TUESDAY, 10:59am: The Celtics will waive Rodney McGruder, Erik Murphy, Tim Frazier and Christian Watford, coach Brad Stevens told reporters, including Gary Washburn of The Boston Globe (Twitter link). All are on non-guaranteed contracts, except for Murphy, whose deal is partially guaranteed for $100K. The moves will leave the Celtics with 16 players, all of whom have fully guaranteed pacts, with one more cut to come before opening night.

Murphy is the only one of the trio with NBA regular season experience, having appeared briefly in 24 games last season with the Bulls, who drafted him 49th overall in 2013. He was nonetheless an afterthought in a series of cap-related moves that began when the Jazz claimed him off waivers from the Bulls late last season. Utah sent him to Cleveland in a three-for-one swap in July, and the Cavs shipped him to the Celtics in their Keith Bogans trade. McGruder, who went undrafted in 2013, was in an NBA training camp for the second autumn in a row after spending last October with the Thunder. Watford also went undrafted that year, though he signed a pair of deals with the C’s this year as Boston waived him to accommodate the Bogans trade, then brought him back. Frazier has had a more conventional tenure with Boston after going undrafted this past June.

The moves still leave president of basketball operations Danny Ainge with a decision to make with Monday’s opening-night roster deadline looming. Will Bynum appeared at one point this weekend to be the guaranteed contract set to go, but the Celtics have yet to commit to parting ways with him.

Eastern Notes: Pierce, Vucevic, Stephenson

Paul Pierce figures coach Jason Kidd‘s departure from the Nets helped dampen the team’s enthusiasm to re-sign the forward to a new deal this summer, as Pierce tells reporters, including Andy Vasquez of The Record. Pierce cites Kidd as one of the primary reasons he encouraged the Celtics to trade him to Brooklyn in 2013, as Vasquez notes. There’s more on key figures who changed places as well as one who’s committed to stay where he is among the news from around the Eastern Conference:

  • Nikola Vucevic is careful to point out that he hasn’t put pen to paper on an extension with the Magic, but he nonetheless made it clear that he’s ecstatic about the agreement that agent Rade Filipovich and the team have reached, as Josh Robbins of the Orlando Sentinel details.
  • Representatives for Lance Stephenson urged the Pacers to offload other players to find room for the shooting guard under the tax line this summer, with the names of Luis Scola and Donald Sloan arising in the talks, but Indiana held firm against doing so, reports Shams Charania of RealGM. The Alberto Ebanks client has said he cried when he told the Pacers he was signing with the Hornets instead, but Stephenson tells Charania that he hasn’t spoken to Pacers president of basketball operations Larry Bird since he made up his mind to join Charlotte.
  • Charania also hears from a source who confirms that Jason Maxiell is the leading contender for a regular season roster spot among the Hornets camp invitees, as the RealGM scribe writes in the same piece. Coach Steve Clifford seems in favor of keeping Maxiell, writes Rick Bonnell of the Charlotte Observer.
  • Christian Watford will play for the Celtics‘ D-League affiliate assuming he clears NBA waivers, reports David Pick of (Twitter link). That means the C’s are following through on their plan to keep Watford’s D-League rights, though Pick hears that the power forward turned down many offers from European teams to instead go to the D-League.
  • Phil Jackson shared his scouting report on every Knicks player with Charley Rosen, writing for The coach-turned-executive admits camp invitees Langston Galloway and Travis Wear are destined for the D-League.

Atlantic Notes: Raptors, Celtics, Teletovic, Sixers

The Sixers have company in their opposition to draft lottery reform, but it looks like change is inevitable. That figures to make a long season even longer in Philadelphia, but in the meantime, there’s news on the Sixers amid the latest from the Atlantic Division:

  • Greg Stiemsma would seem the favorite for the 15th regular season roster spot on the Raptors based on Toronto’s needs at center, writes Ryan Wolstat of the Toronto Sun, but Jordan Hamilton and Will Cherry are making strong cases for themselves, as Wolstat examines. Each has a partial guarantee of $25K.
  • The Celtics signed Tim Frazier, Rodney McGruder and Christian Watford with the intention of keeping their D-League rights, notes Chris Forsberg of Boston is set to release the trio, as well as Erik Murphy, from its NBA roster soon.
  • Mirza Teletovic plans to listen to offers from the Nets as well as other teams when his contract expires after the season, as he said this week to Avaz, a newspaper in his native Bosnia and Herzegovina, as Robert Windrem of Nets Daily translates. The Nets can make Teletovic a restricted free agent, though their right of first refusal wouldn’t apply if he chose to go back overseas.
  • JaKarr Sampson has been especially impressive, as Sixers coach Brett Brown told reporters this week as he discussed the team’s players fighting for a regular season roster spot, observes Keith Pompey of the Philadelphia Inquirer.

Contract Details: Papanikolaou, Suns, Sixers

Teams have made several roster moves in the past few days as they’ve prepared for camp, leaving a few loose ends to resolve contractually. Eric Pincus of Basketball Insiders provides a few answers to the questions left unresolved, so we’ll pass along his revelations here:

  • The Rockets essentially reversed the salaries in each year of Kostas Papanikolaou‘s deal after the league forced the team to sign him to a new contract. He’ll make slighly more than $4.591MM this year and nearly $4.798MM next season, Pincus reports (Twitter link). It’s unclear whether the contract has guarantee dates, like the original pact, but it does include a signing bonus of almost $207K, according to Pincus (Twitter links).
  • The extensions that Markieff Morris and Marcus Morris signed with the Suns include salaries that go down in year two before rising again in years three and four, Pincus reveals (Twitter links). An earlier report had indicated that they were all escalating salaries.
  • Zoran Dragic will only make $1.5MM this year and the same amount in 2015/16, so his Suns contract is slightly less lucrative than thought, as Pincus details (Twitter link). Those figures include a signing bonus of about $413K.
  • The Sixers used some of their cap space to give Jerami Grant, this year’s No. 39 overall pick, a four-year contract that’s fully guaranteed for the first two seasons and non-guaranteed thereafter, according to Pincus (Twitter link). The final season also features a team option, Pincus adds. The salary of nearly $885K in the first year is more than the rookie minimum, but it’s otherwise a minimum-salary arrangement.
  • Christian Watford‘s new deal with the Celtics covers one year at the minimum salary and is non-guaranteed, Pincus shows (Twitter link). That makes him eligible to have signed an Exhibit 9 Contract that would keep the C’s from paying him if he were to suffer an injury in preseason, though it’s not clear whether it is indeed one of those sorts of pacts.

Celtics Re-Sign Christian Watford

The Celtics have re-signed power forward Christian Watford, the team announced via press release. The statement also confirmed the team’s deals with shooting guard Rodney McGruder and point guard Tim Frazier. The C’s waived Watford on Saturday to accommodate the team’s acquisition of four players in return for Keith Bogans, but they had an agreement to re-sign Watford even as they let him go, since Boston released others to make room. The Celtics had the capacity to exceed the minimum salary with Watford, McGruder and Frazier, but it’s unlikely they’ve done so. The amount of guaranteed money for the trio is unclear.

Watford went undrafted out of the University of Indiana in 2013, spending time in summer league with the Pacers, Mavs, Pistons and Warriors the past two offseasons and heading to Israel’s Hapoel Eilat for the 2013/14 season. He averaged 12.3 points and 6.3 rebounds in 27.9 minutes per game in his final season with the Hoosiers.

The additions, plus the long-awaited official announcement of the C’s deal with Evan Turner, gives Boston 20 players for camp. Presuming Turner’s deal is fully guaranteed, the Celtics have 16 such contracts, plus a partial guarantee to Erik Murphy, meaning the team will have to return to the trading block to avoid having dead money on the books come opening night. It also means that Watford is unlikely to remain for the regular season, though it’s possible the C’s will retain his D-League rights.

Celtics Cut, Agree To Re-Sign Christian Watford

11:20pm: The release has taken place, according to the RealGM transactions log, but Watford and the team have agreed on a new deal that he would sign Monday, presuming he clears waivers, as Shams Charania of RealGM reports (Twitter link). It’s an odd turn of events, particularly since the injury to Rajon Rondo would suggest the team would prioritize point guards rather than a big man like Watford. Boston hasn’t publicly acknowledged waiving Watford, just as the team never formally announced that he’d signed, making the situation even more strange. In any case, adding Watford again would force the C’s to cut ties with two other players before they can make their deal with Turner official.

3:39pm: The Celtics are waiving power forward Christian Watford, a source tells Chris Forsberg of (Twitter link). Forsberg’s tweet indicates the release has already taken place, but there’s been no formal announcement of such a move. Boston never officially announced his signing, either, but reports indicated that he put pen to paper last month. The C’s had to remove one player from their roster following Thursday’s Keith Bogans trade and the releases of Chris Johnson and Chris Babb, which left them with 21 contracts, one over the preseason limit.

Watford didn’t last long enough with Boston to suit up for the team, having spent summer league with the Pistons and Warriors instead. He played summer league with the Pacers and Mavs last year, but that’s been the extent of his NBA experience since he went undrafted out of Indiana University in June 2013. Watford, now 23, spent this past season playing with Hapoel Eilat in Israel, averaging 9.6 points and 5.2 rebounds in 26.1 minutes per game.

The Celtics still must clear one more player before they can turn their agreement with Evan Turner into an official contract. Tim Frazier, John Lucas IIIRodney McGruder and Malcolm Thomas are all on non-guaranteed deals, so it’s most likely that one of them will be cut.

Celtics Sign McGruder, Watford

SEPTEMBER 29TH: The deals are official, the team announced via press release.

AUGUST 20TH: The Celtics have signed Rodney McGruder and Christian Watford to one-year deals, reports Mark Deeks of ShamSports. The team hasn’t announced the signings, but they are reflected on RealGM’s transaction log. The two players were added along with Tim Frazier, who is a training camp invite. It’s very likely that both McGruder and Watford are joining Boston on non-guaranteed summer contracts to compete for a roster spot.

Both McGruder and Watford went undrafted in 2013, and both spent last year playing overseas. McGruder spent time with the Thunder for training camp last summer, but was cut from the roster prior to the season. Boston has 14 guaranteed contracts on the books for 2014/15, and this will bring their total roster count, including non-guaranteed deals, up to the summer maximum of 20. However, the team also has a deal with Evan Turner that’s yet to become official, meaning they will have to waive or trade one of the 20 players under contract before formally signing him.

McGruder is a shooting guard who averaged 11.7 PPG and 4.8 RPG at Kansas State. Watford, a power forward, averaged 12.3 PPG and 5.9 RPG in four years at Indiana. Deeks places their odds of making the team as “not remotely likely” in a separate tweet.

Draft Workout Updates: Friday

With just six days left until the 2013 draft, NBA teams continue to bring in prospects to work them out and gather as much information as they can. Here are the latest updates on workouts taking place today, over the weekend, and early next week:

  • Allen Crabbe will work out Tuesday with the Bucks and Wednesday for the Nets, reports Scott Howard Cooper of Crabbe, widely projected as a late first-rounder at best, made it a priority to visit the Bucks, who have the No. 15 pick (Twitter links).
  • Mason Plumlee wasn't on the list the Pistons released of players with whom the team has met, but he was scheduled to work out for Detroit on Friday, according to MLive's David Mayo.
  • We heard about Vander Blue's workout with the Bucks today (below), and Charles F. Gardner of the Journal Sentinel notes that Blue has also auditioned for the Mavs, Spurs, Hawks, Sixers, Pistons and Magic, with another workout on tap for Monday with the Grizzlies.

Earlier updates:

  • Anthony Bennett will visit the Bobcats on Saturday, though his injured rotator cuff will prevent him from working out, tweets Rick Bonnell of the Charlotte Observer.
  • Pelicans GM Dell Demps traveled Friday to get a close look at Victor Oladipo, sources confirmed to John Reid of The Times Picayune.
  • Keith Langlois of passed along a list of players who met with the Pistons this past week: Trey Burke, Michael Carter-Williams, C.J. McCollum, Cody Zeller, Derrick Nix, Dexter Strickland, Augusto Cesar Lima, Jared Berggren, Kenny Boynton and Karron Johnson (All Twitter links).
  • The Kings updated the workout schedule on their website, which shows Shabazz MuhammadDoug Anderson, A.J. Davis, John Dickson, Mfon Udofia and Kwame Vaughn coming in Saturday. McCollum will be in for a workout on Monday, Cowbell Kingdom's James Ham tweets.
  • Today's workout for the Timberwolves is expected to be the last one for the team, tweets Jerry Zgoda of the Star Tribune, adding that Mason Plumlee, Kelly Olynyk, Colton Iverson, and Christian Watford were in attendance.
  • Chris Vivlamore of the Atlanta Journal Constitution passes along a couple tweets from Gorgui Dieng, surmising that the big man appears to be in Atlanta for a workout with the Hawks.
  • The Suns' workout today is headlined by Glen Rice Jr., according to Paul Coro of the Arizona Republic, who has the full list of participants in a pair of tweets.
  • Vander Blue, Grant Jerrett, Brock Motum, Dejan Musli, Nemanja Nedovic, and Andrew Smith are working out for the Bucks today, according to the team's PR Twitter feed.
  • Tim Hardaway Jr. and Erick Green will be among the prospects working out for the Nets on Monday, the team announced in a press release.
  • Hardaway Jr. was also among the prospects who worked out for the Clippers today, along with Tony Snell, Ricky Ledo, and Reggie Bullock (link via Eric Patten of
  • The Pacers announced today that they'll work out a a handful of prospects tomorrow: Matt Dellavedova, Angel Sharpless, Jamaal Franklin, Zeke Marshall, and Jeff Withey.

Draft Notes: Jazz, Noel, Cavs, Suns, Blazers

We unveiled the first edition of Hoops Rumors' 2013 mock draft earlier today, as our own Alex Lee ran through picks one through 30. We'll have our second and final mock up next week, just in time for Thursday night's draft, and given the lack of consensus on this year's class, it wouldn't be a surprise to see major changes to our board over the next several days. Here are the latest draft-related notes and rumors:

  • The Clippers worked out E.J. Singler, Carrick Felix, Alex Oriakhi, and Jackie Carmichael at their Playa Vista training center this morning (
  • Among those who will participate in a pre-draft workout with the Wizards tomorrow include Keith Clanton, D.J. Cooper, Joffrey Lauvergne, Korie Lucious, Nicolo Melli, and Maurice Sutton, according to the team's official website
  • The Timberwolves will host Mason Plumlee, Kelly Olynyk, Christian Watford, and Colton Iverson tomorrow, as per the team's official PR Twitter account

Earlier updates:

  • Today's NBA AM piece from Steve Kyler of HoopsWorld is heavy on draft content, including an interview with Nerlens Noel and updates on Alex Len, the Jazz, and possible draft-and-stash candidates.
  • Sources within the Cavaliers organization seem somewhat "cool" on Noel, according to Jason Lloyd of the Akron Beacon Journal. Still, Lloyd says the Cavs continue to prioritize long-term results rather than a short-term desire to make the playoffs, so Noel's inability to make an immediate impact likely wouldn't be a significant factor in the club's decision at No. 1.
  •'s Chad Ford (Insider-only link) has unveiled his annual tiered rankings of the draft class, and none of this year's prospects qualified for either the first or second tier.
  • While most of the focus among Suns fans figures to be on the team's fifth overall pick, Phoenix also has the 30th and 57th selections. Paul Coro of the Arizona Republic has the names of the candidates for those picks who worked out for the team today, including Jeff Withey and Deshaun Thomas (Twitter link).
  • Steven Adams, Rudy Gobert, and Ricky Ledo are among the prospects working out for the Trail Blazers today, and Chris Haynes of believes one of them could end up being the No. 10 pick (Twitter links).