Cory Joseph

Pacers Re-Sign James Johnson

Following the expiration of his second 10-day contract with Indiana on Wednesday night, veteran forward James Johnson has re-signed with the Pacers, the team announced in a press release.

As expected, veteran point guard Cory Joseph was waived to open up a spot on the 15-man roster for Johnson. Indiana acquired Joseph from Golden State along with $5.68MM in cash earlier in the day.

Johnson has now signed four separate contracts with Indiana since the 2023/24 season began. He originally inked a non-guaranteed minimum-salary contract on December 15, but was waived to accommodate the trade for Pascal Siakam a month later. Johnson returned to the Pacers on a pair of 10-day contracts and now that he’s ineligible to sign another 10-day pact, has finalized a rest-of-season deal with the club.

Johnson, who will turn 37 later this month, doesn’t see much action for the Pacers, having logged just 24 total minutes across five appearances so far this season. However, he’s a valued veteran presence in the locker room and brings some toughness and physicality to a relatively young team.

A prorated minimum-salary contract for Johnson will pay him $1,230,816 the rest of the way and will count toward Indiana’s cap for $777,703.

The Pacers now have a full 15-man roster, but they’re expected to open up a spot by waiving Furkan Korkmaz, who was acquired from Philadelphia on Thursday.

Pacers Acquire Cory Joseph, Will Waive Him

5:53pm: The trade is official, the Warriors confirmed in a press release (Twitter link).

3:47pm: The Pacers intend to waive Joseph, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski (Twitter link). Essentially then, Indiana’s motive in the deal was to sell off the worst of its 2024 second-round picks.

2:23pm: The Pacers are acquiring veteran guard Cory Joseph from the Warriors, according to The Athletic’s Shams Charania. Indiana is sending out a second-round pick for Joseph and cash (Twitter links).

The pick will be in this year’s draft and will be the least favorable of the three second-rounders the Pacers currently control, per Anthony Slater of The Athletic (Twitter links). That second-rounder will likely be Milwaukee’s or Cleveland’s.

The Pacers are receiving $5.8MM in cash from Golden State and will also acquire Charlotte’s top-55 protected 2025 second-rounder, reports John Hollinger of The Athletic (Twitter link).

Golden State will reduce its luxury tax penalty by $13.5MM by lopping off Joseph’s $2MM cap hit, Yossi Gozlan of Hoops Hype tweets. The Warriors now have a $172.8MM projected luxury tax penalty with a $379MM combined payroll and tax payments.

Indiana has a roster spot opening, so it doesn’t need to waive a player to make room for Joseph. The Pacers have plenty of depth at point guard, so it’s unclear whether it has any plans for the 32-year-old. Joseph has appeared in 26 games off the bench this season, averaging 2.4 points and 1.6 assists in 11.4 minutes.

Joseph played the past two seasons and part of the previous campaign with Detroit.

Fischer’s Latest: Point Guard Rumors, Sixers, Rockets, More

After Charlotte was able to secure a first-round pick from Miami in this week’s deal for Terry Rozier, teams with quality guards available are expected to use that return as a benchmark, according to Jake Fischer of Yahoo Sports, who suggests that the Wizards, Trail Blazers, and Raptors want “at least a first-round pick” for Tyus Jones, Malcolm Brogdon, and Bruce Brown, respectively.

It will presumably be more difficult to extract a first-round pick for a player headed for free agency in 2024 and 2025 than it was for Rozier, who has two more years left on his contract beyond this one. Still, as Fischer notes, there will be no shortage of teams in the market for backcourt help at this season’s deadline.

Sources tell Yahoo Sports that the Lakers are “chief among backcourt buyers” as they seek a point guard upgrade on D’Angelo Russell. The Knicks, Bucks, and Sixers are among the other potential buyers at that position, while the Nets have “poked around” the market too, per Fischer.

Fischer names the Cavaliers and Timberwolves as two other clubs expected to peruse the market in search of backcourt depth and notes that the Spurs will always be a team to watch for point guards until they find a long-term answer at the position to pair with Victor Wembanyama.

Here’s more from Fischer:

  • Veteran point guard T.J. McConnell was viewed as a possible target for teams looking for backcourt help, but the Pacers have indicated to potential trade partners that they don’t want to move him, Fischer reports. Some of the backup point guards who are available around the NBA, per Fischer, are Davion Mitchell (Kings), Cameron Payne (Bucks), Cory Joseph (Warriors), and Devonte’ Graham (Spurs).
  • Kyle Lowry isn’t expected to join the Hornets prior to the trade deadline as Charlotte looks to flip him to a new team. If he’s still a Hornet once the deadline passes, Lowry will be a strong candidate for a buyout, and the Sixers appear to be a “real possibility” for the Philadelphia native, says Fischer.
  • The Sixers are prioritizing fit alongside Joel Embiid and Tyrese Maxey as they consider their trade options. They don’t appear to have significant interest in Bruce Brown and will have to seriously consider whether Dejounte Murray is the right piece next to Maxey, given the Hawks‘ high asking price for Murray, Fischer writes. Atlanta is reportedly seeking two first-round picks and a starting-caliber player for the guard.
  • The Rockets have their eye on a pair of Trail Blazers, according to Fischer, who says Malcolm Brogdon and Robert Williams have both drawn interest from Houston. The Lakers and Knicks are among the other teams that have been connected to Brogdon.
  • The Pelicans and Magic are two teams that rival executives expect to be in the market for a point guard in the summer, though New Orleans is focused more on the center spot for now, per Fischer.

Warriors Notes: Moody, Podziemski, Joseph, CP3, Siakam

While Jonathan Kuminga‘s frustration with his fluctuating role was the bigger news this week, it sounds like he’s not the only Warriors youngster who has sought clarity on his place in the team’s rotation. According to Jason Dumas of KRON4 News (Twitter link), general manager Mike Dunleavy Jr. has been “directly asked” about the team’s plan for Moses Moody, who would also like a more consistent role.

“The people around Moses, they’re frustrated with the lack of having a role and the lack of consistency,” Dumas said during a subsequent radio appearance on 95.7 The Game (Twitter video link). “He’s in the rotation one day, he’s out of the rotation one day. For lack of a better term, he almost seems like the sacrificial lamb, so to speak. Whenever there’s a logjam, he’s gonna be the guy that falls out.

“From what I’ve been told, Moses loves the Bay Area and he loves playing for the Warriors, but I think it’s understandable that someone in his position with a lot of talent, young, would be frustrated and would want a clearer path to playing time, whether it be here or somewhere else.”

Moody was a DNP-CD for three consecutive games leading up to Friday’s contest vs. the Pistons. The third-year shooting guard received a standing ovation when he checked into that game in the fourth quarter, as Marcus Thompson II of The Athletic notes (via Twitter), though he ultimately went scoreless in six minutes of action.

Here’s more on the Warriors:

  • Chris Paul‘s hand injury will help create more regular minutes in the rotation for Moody, head coach Steve Kerr confirmed on Friday (Twitter link via Anthony Slater of The Athletic). Kerr said that rookie Brandin Podziemski and veteran Cory Joseph will also get some additional ball-handling reps during Paul’s absence.
  • Marcus Thompson II of The Athletic doesn’t expect Paul’s hand injury to have much of an impact on his trade value, even if it sidelines him beyond the February 8 deadline. As Thompson explains, if the Warriors decide to move CP3, they’d likely be sending him to a team that wants him more for his large expiring salary than for what he can provide on the court.
  • Appearing on a Bleacher Report live stream on Friday (Twitter video link), veteran NBA reporter Chris Haynes said that rival executives view Golden State as a potential “dark horse” suitor in the Pascal Siakam sweepstakes.
  • Prior to Friday’s victory over Detroit, Kevin O’Connor of The Ringer questioned some of the Warriors’ rotation decisions and took a deep dive into the club’s recent struggles, while Marcus Thompson II covered similar ground in a story for The Athletic.

Warriors Notes: Green, Joseph, Payton, Thompson, Paul, Gay, McGruder

The Warriors provided a minor injury update on Draymond Green, who expects to miss four-to-six weeks with a left ankle sprain. According to the team, Green will be reevaluated in two weeks (Twitter link via Anthony Slater of The Athletic).

Golden State also had an update on veteran guard Cory Joseph, who signed with the Warriors in free agency. Joseph sustained a back injury while preparing with the Canadian national team for the World Cup, which caused him to miss the tournament.

According to Slater, the Warriors described the injury as a lower back lumbar strain, and Joseph will be reevaluated in two weeks. That means he’ll miss training camp.

Here’s more on the Warriors:

  • At Monday’s Media Day (Twitter links via ESPN’s Kendra Andrews), Green said he was disappointed with the injury, but he’s pleased with how his ankle is responding thus far and is focused on being in “even better shape by the time, whenever it is, that I start playing … it’s an opportunity for me to get better and continue to improve.”
  • Guard Gary Payton II was limited to just 15 games last season due to a lingering adductor injury, but he’s healthy now and says there’s a “night and day” difference entering 2023/24. “Ready to play 82 (games),” he said, per Slater (Twitter link).
  • Klay Thompson will be a free agent in 2024 unless he signs a contract extension. As Andrews tweets, Thompson says it’s “possible” a deal comes together in the next few months. “If not, life is still great,” he said. “I’m playing basketball in my 13th year in the NBA.”
  • There’s been a lot of speculation about who will start for the Warriors this season after the team traded for Chris Paul, who has never come off the bench in his long NBA career. But Paul noted that he was a reserve for Team USA at the 2008 Olympics, and he’s not concerned about starting in ’23/24. Anybody who knows me knows that I’m all about winning,” Paul said, per Andrews (Twitter link). “Whatever I can do to help the team win.”
  • According to Keith Smith of Spotrac (Twitter link), both Rudy Gay and Rodney McGruder  signed non-guaranteed Exhibit 9 deals for training camp. Exhibit 9’s can only be one-year, minimum-salary contracts and do not count against the salary cap until the start of the regular season. Exhibit 9 contracts are primarily used to limit the team’s liability in the event of an injury.

World Cup Notes: Jackson, Reaves, Murray, Bogdanovic

Grizzlies big man Jaren Jackson Jr. was named the standout of training camp in a straw poll of Team USA players taken by Joe Vardon of The Athletic. The American World Cup team wrapped up camp on Sunday in advance of tonight’s first exhibition game, and Jackson made a strong impression on his teammates.

“Jaren, particularly (Saturday), his energy and the way he went to the glass and went to the foul line every other possession,” Jalen Brunson said. “He was just really a force (in the Saturday scrimmage against the Select Team).”

As its best rim protector and most versatile big man, Jackson will be important to Team USA’s chances of capturing a gold medal. He’s looking forward to the international competition, noting that it’s conducive to his style of play, which often gets him into foul trouble in the NBA.

“It’s more physical in FIBA,” Jackson said. “You can use your chest a lot more. You can’t really use your hands, so that’s the similarity (with the NBA), but you can use your chest in FIBA just to get him off you or whatever the case. The defense gets a lot of benefit of the doubt, for the most part.”

There’s more World Cup news to pass along:

  • Even after a breakout season, Austin Reaves was surprised to receive an invitation to join the Team USA roster, per Steve Carp of The Sporting Tribune. Entering the league as an undrafted player, Reaves doesn’t have the credentials of his more heralded teammates, but his performance with the Lakers caught the attention of USA Basketball managing director Grant Hill. “I was shocked,” Reaves said. “As a kid, you watch (USA Basketball) and you fantasize taking that last shot to win the gold medal. Now I’m here and with a chance to contribute and be part of it. It’s a tremendous honor personally and to also represent the Lakers.”
  • Nuggets guard Jamal Murray will miss Team Canada’s exhibition games in Europe as his status for the World Cup is evaluated, tweets Michael Grange of The Canadians will play three times this week in Germany and twice next week in Spain before the actual tournament begins August 25. Canada will also be without newly signed Warriors guard Cory Joseph, who experienced an issue with his back during training camp, Kassius Robertson, who will report to his new EuroLeague team instead, and Oshae Brissett, who is rehabbing an injury (Twitter link).
  • Hawks guard Bogdan Bogdanovic tells Eurohoops that he’s optimistic about Serbia’s chances even though it won’t have NBA Finals MVP Nikola Jokic or new Thunder guard Vasilije Micic. “Given that it’s a relatively young team, we’ve managed well,” Bogdanovic said. “… We play a fast and attractive style of basketball.”

Pacific Notes: Durant, Bates-Diop, Curry, Joseph

Kevin Durant takes credit for helping to lift the NBA’s ban on marijuana and talks about his desire to eventually get into ownership in an interview with CNBC, relays Dana Scott of The Arizona Republic.

The Suns star, who’s involved in cannabis business ventures, said he reached out to commissioner Adam Silver about removing the drug prohibitions from the new Collective Bargaining Agreement. Players were previously required to enter the league’s treatment and counseling program after a first offense and faced fines and suspensions for multiple violations.

“I actually called him and advocated for him to take marijuana off the banned substance list,” Durant said. “I just felt like it was becoming a thing around the country, around the world that it was the stigma behind it wasn’t as negative as it was before. It doesn’t affect you in any negative way.”

Durant talked about his numerous business interests, which he said were starting to take up too much of his time. He and his agent, Rich Kleiman, agreed that he’ll take a step back from those commitments to focus more on basketball. Durant also discussed his longtime dream of becoming an NBA team owner, preferably with a new franchise in Seattle, where he debuted in the league.

“That would be cool for sure in a perfect world,” Durant said. “Whatever opportunity comes up, hopefully I can be a part of something special. But yeah, Seattle would be the ideal spot. They deserve to have a team there again, and I would love to be a part of the NBA in that fashion. But we’ll see.”

There’s more from the Pacific Division:

  • Keita Bates-Diop is a defensive specialist, but he can help the Suns‘ offense as well, Gerald Bourguet of PHNX Sports writes in an examination of what the free agent forward will bring to the team. “I think you’re gonna be surprised at some of the stuff he’s able to do around the rim with his length,” said Doug McDermott, who played alongside Bates-Diop in San Antonio. “Like, he can finish layups I’ve never seen just ’cause how long his arms are.”
  • In a new PBS documentary, Warriors guard Stephen Curry says he still feels like he’s in “the prime of my career, in a sense of what I’m able to accomplish.” The project, titled ‘Stephen Curry: Underrated,’ traces his journey from unproven prospect to the top three-point shooter in NBA history.
  • Veteran guard Cory Joseph is thrilled to have the chance to back up Curry and Chris Paul after signing a one-year deal with the Warriors, per Dalton Johnson of NBC Sports Bay Area. Joseph called it an “unbelievable opportunity” during an introductory press conference via Zoom. “I get to learn from two of the greats to ever do it at their position,” he said. “I’m extremely excited. I’m sure I’ll get there and learn a lot from them.”

And-Ones: Team Canada, Ownership Stakes, Cap Room, Giles

While a Team USA roster led by Jalen Brunson, Anthony Edwards, Brandon Ingram, and Mikal Bridges will enter the 2023 World Cup as the frontrunner next month, Team Canada’s initial 18-man group features some real star power.

The extended roster, announced this week by Canada Basketball, is headlined by Nuggets guard Jamal Murray, Thunder guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Thunder forward Luguentz Dort, Knicks forward RJ Barrett, and Rockets forward Dillon Brooks.

It also features five other players currently on NBA rosters: veteran big men Dwight Powell (Mavericks) and Kelly Olynyk (Jazz), guards Nickeil Alexander-Walker (Timberwolves) and Cory Joseph (Warriors), and forward Oshae Brissett (Celtics). Purdue’s star center Zach Edey is on the roster too.

Team Canada will have to make a few cuts to get down to 12 players for the World Cup, and it’s possible some of the more notable names will drop out in order to focus on the NBA season. However, league sources tell Joe Vardon of The Athletic that Murray has reaffirmed his commitment to the team despite a lengthy postseason run with the Nuggets this spring.

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

  • The minimum stake that someone can own in an NBA franchise has been lowered, according to Mike Vorkunov of The Athletic, who says a minority shareholder can now control as little as 0.5% of a team, down from 1%.
  • A total of eight teams operated below the cap this offseason, having entered the league year with $277MM in combined cap room, per Yossi Gozlan of HoopsHype. As Gozlan outlines, over half of that league-wide cap space was used to accommodate trades or contract negotiations rather than free agent signings.
  • Sean Cunningham of FOX40 in Sacramento (video link) caught up with free agent big man Harry Giles to talk about the 25-year-old’s efforts to make it back into the NBA, as well as the new rule related to two-way contracts that will unofficially be named after him.

Pacific Notes: Saric, Joseph, Duarte, Castleton, U’Ren

Adding Dario Saric was a high priority for the Warriors and new general manager Mike Dunleavy Jr. snared the 6’10” Saric on a still unofficial one-year veteran’s minimum contract. Dunleavy believes Saric is a great fit, giving the club a big man who can space the floor, Dalton Johnson of NBC Sports Bay Area writes.

“We’ve had a lot of success signing guys who probably should make more than the minimum and have been able to come in and help our team,” Dunleavy said.

Golden State may bring in another big man to fill another roster spot or on a two-way, Anthony Slater of The Athletic tweets.

The Warriors also added Cory Joseph on a one-year contract as a backup point guard to Stephen Curry and Chris Paul. Joseph spent the last few seasons with the Pistons.

“He’s a guy who’s going to be willing to come in and do whatever it takes each and every day. Chris and Steph will see a lot of the minutes at point guard, but Cory will always stay ready,” Dunleavy said. “He was excited to sign here and we’re excited to have him.”

We have more from the Pacific Division:

  • Chris Duarte said he was caught off guard when the Pacers traded him to the Kings, according to Jason Anderson of the Sacramento Bee. “I was surprised,” Duarte said. “I was at home with the family when I received a call. This is how the business works. … This is a great team, great franchise, great fan base. I’ve seen videos of how loud the fans get, so I love that.” The Kings gave up two second-round picks for Duarte, who battled an ankle injury last season.
  • Colin Castleton is making a good impression on the Lakers’ Summer League team, Sean Deveney of notes. Castleton, who had 21 points, 14 rebounds and three assists during their second game on Sunday against the Hornets, is on a two-way contract. “I wanted to develop my first year, learn from the best players in the world, which they have, a great organization from the front office to the coaches, everybody there is great,” the big man said.
  • The Warriors lost an executive to the WNBA. The Phoenix Mercury are hiring Nick U’Ren as their GM, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski writes. U’Ren had been Golden State’s executive director of basketball operations. He’ll begin his GM duties after the Mercury’s season ends.

Free Agency Notes: Collison, Suns, Jerome, White, Cap Room, Joseph

Free agent guard Darren Collison didn’t play in the NBA at all last season and has appeared in just three games since 2019, but he hasn’t given up on earning a spot on an opening-night roster this fall. According to Chris Haynes of TNT and Bleacher Report (Twitter link), Collison worked out last week for the Suns and had a “great showing.”

The Suns, who entered free agency with eight players under contract, have reached deals with seven free agents, so they project to have a full 15-man roster. However, Haynes says the club continues to be “aggressive” in seeking role players.

One way Phoenix could open up a roster spot is by waiving or trading Isaiah Todd, whose inclusion in the Bradley Beal trade seemed to be more about Washington moving off his guaranteed 2023/24 salary than the Suns specifically targeting him. Still, any form of salary dump will be costly for a Suns team that projects to be well over the tax line and doesn’t have any future draft picks left to trade.

Here are a few more notes related to free agency:

  • The Warriors withdrew their qualifying offer to Ty Jerome, while the Nuggets did the same with Jack White, per RealGM’s transactions log. Reports on Saturday indicated that Jerome had reached a contract agreement with the Cavaliers and that White is poised to sign with the Thunder. With those qualifying offers no longer on the table, the two players are no longer restricted free agents, clearing the path for them to freely join their new teams as unrestricted FAs.
  • Once coveted for its power to attract a top free agent, maximum-salary cap room no longer has the cachet it once did, according to John Hollinger of The Athletic, who notes that the Rockets were the only team this summer to use a significant chunk of cap space to sign a marquee free agent (Fred VanVleet) to a huge, multiyear deal. Most other teams with room have used it for trades, renegotiations, or smaller (and/or shorter-term) signings. As Hollinger observes, the new contract extension rules in the 2017 CBA have resulted in fewer stars reaching the open market, with 2019 standing out as the last big summer of free agent movement.
  • Warriors guards Chris Paul and Stephen Curry are 38 and 35 years old, respectively, and have each dealt with injuries over the years. The addition of Cory Joseph, who agreed to a one-year deal with Golden State on Sunday, will help ensure that those veteran stars get the rest they need during the regular season, according to Dalton Johnson of NBC Sports Bay Area, who takes a closer look at what Joseph will bring to the team.