Coty Clarke

Atlantic Notes: Hinkie, Wroten, Larranaga, Clarke

Sixers GM Sam Hinkie is neither wonderful nor terrible, and the team would be unwise to cut ties with him completely in the wake of the marginalization of his role, opines Marcus Hayes of the Philadelphia Daily News. His autonomy is gone in the wake of the team’s hiring of Jerry Colangelo as chairman of basketball operations, but Hinkie, through his collection of draft assets and other promising young talent, is an asset himself, Hayes argues. Hinkie has said he isn’t worried about his job security, even though the Sixers are reportedly considering a move that would further reduce his role.

See more from the Atlantic Division:

  • Tony Wroten‘s minimum-salary pact with the Knicks is non-guaranteed for next season, but a $25K partial guarantee kicks in if he’s still under contract at the end of October 1st, reports Eric Pincus of Basketball Insiders (Twitter link). That partial guarantee would increase to $125K if he sticks through opening night and jump to $345K if he makes it through December 15th, Pincus also shows.
  • Georgia Tech has reached out to Celtics assistant Jay Larranaga about the school’s head coaching job, reports Jeff Goodman of The well-respected Larranaga interviewed for the Sixers job three years ago and has drawn mention as a potential candidate for other NBA openings since. Mark Murphy of the Boston Herald reported last year that Larranaga wouldn’t leave the Celtics for a college job, but it’s unclear if that’s still his stance.
  • Coty Clarke has returned to the D-League affiliate of the Celtics following the expiration of his second 10-day contract with Boston’s NBA club, reports Chris Reichert of Upside & Motor (Twitter link).

Atlantic Notes: Colangelo, Rambis, Galloway, Clarke

Sixers chairman of basketball operations Jerry Colangelo has an in with plenty of NBA stars as managing director of USA Basketball, but it’s off-base to suggest marquee players will flock to the Sixers anytime soon because of that, contends Derek Bodner of Philadelphia magazine. The Sixers are too far from contention to become the rare NBA team capable of convincing top-flight free agents to take discounts to sign with them, Bodner argues, suggesting the onus instead is on Colangelo and the rest of the Philly front office to make wise choices without any inherent advantage. The year ahead is critical for Colangelo and the Sixers, as Liberty Ballers managing editor Jake Pavorsky detailed Friday in the latest edition of our Top Bloggers series.
See more from the Atlantic Division:
  • Kristaps Porzingis has broken out of his slump, as Fred Kerber of the New York Post examines, and the numbers show he’s putting up essentially the same sort of production under Knicks interim coach Kurt Rambis as he did under the fired Derek Fisher, notes Ian Begley of That dismisses one of the arguments against the team removing the interim tag from Rambis’ title, Begley suggests.
  • The Knicks have reportedly given up on the idea of Langston Galloway as a point guard, but Rambis insists the team is still high on the soon-to-be free agent, Newsday’s Al Iannazzone relays. New York can make him a restricted free agent with a qualifying offer of about $1.18MM. “We like his defense, we like his ability to organize and execute our offense,” Rambis said. “We just continue to challenge him to broaden his game . . . He’s just not playing at his best right now.”
  • A versatile forward is what the Celtics probably want if they’re to fill their roster vacancy, coach Brad Stevens said today, according to Adam Himmelsbach of The Boston Globe (Twitter link). Coty Clarke, whom the team has elected not to re-sign following the expiration of his second 10-day contract, would ostensibly fit that bill, but Boston prefers the flexibility of an open roster spot over another deal for him, wary of the possibility that an injury will create a need at another position, Himmelsbach wrote this weekend. Any new deal for Clarke would have to cover the rest of the season and the playoffs.

Celtics Rumors: Clarke, Crowder, Thomas, Smart

The Celtics won’t give Coty Clarke another contract after his second 10-day deal expires today, according to Adam Himmelsbach of The Boston Globe. Boston would have needed to sign the 6’7″ small forward for the rest of the season to keep him on the roster. A source told Himmelsbach the Celtics will consider bringing back Clarke in the future, but the team prefers to keep an open roster spot heading into the playoffs to guard against injury. Clarke, who spent most of the season with Boston’s D-League affiliate in Maine, first signed with the Celtics on March 7th. He saw six minutes of action in three games.

There’s more this morning out of Boston:

  • Jae Crowder, who hasn’t played since suffering a high ankle sprain March 11th, is considered day-to-day and could return this week, Himmelsbach relays in the same piece. There were initially fears that the injury could sideline Crowder through the first round of the playoffs.
  • Isaiah Thomas, who on Saturday made his second trip to Phoenix since being traded in February of 2015, told Paul Coro of The Arizona Republic that this visit was much less emotional. Everybody when I got to the arena was showing a lot of love, like the workers and all that,'” the All-Star point guard said. It’s a place that I like. I like the city. When I was here, they showed me a good time. There’s no bad feelings no more. It was just that one game. Now, it’s just another team, another game.”
  • Marcus Smart, whose recent shooting woes have led to trade speculation, impressed coach Brad Stevens with his all-around game in Saturday’s win, writes Chris Forsberg of Smart was just 2 of 7 from the field but had eight rebounds, four assists, a steal and a block. “Those are the things that make Marcus special,” Stevens said. “Sometimes those go in a box score, sometimes they don’t. But he does them every game.”

And-Ones: Skiles, White, D-League, Butler

Despite the Magic being out of the playoff hunt, which gives the team an opportunity to evaluate its younger players for the future, coach Scott Skiles noted that playing time will still need to be earned through hard work and performance, Brian Schmitz of The Orlando Sentinel relays. “It’s imperative that we get away from just playing guys regardless of what they do. That’s a terrible mistake, in my opinion. I don’t think that’s how guys develop properly,” Skiles said.

You also have to verbalize it to guys — and it has been a whole bunch of times — we want guys to earn their minutes and understand how you perform is important,” Skiles continued. “If you’re a young player and you have a bad game or something, you certainly don’t want them sulking or getting too down about it. But on the other hand, you want them to have some sense of urgency that, ‘I have to perform. This is big-time pro sports,’ and it’s not just, ‘That’s OK because I’m here to develop and by Year four I’ll magically be [a great player].’ That’s not the way it works.

Here’s more from around the league:

  • Suns affiliate player Terrico White has a signed contract to play for Israel’s Nes-Ziona at the end of the D-League season, according to international journalist David Pick (Twitter link), bringing clarity to some conflicting reports about his status. White, the 36th pick in the 2010 draft, was on Phoenix’s NBA roster for the preseason this past fall.
  • Bulls swingman Jimmy Butler said that he doesn’t think he’ll need to undergo surgery this offseason on his injured left knee, K.C. Johnson of The Chicago Tribune relays (via Twitter). Butler also noted that he hasn’t been informed by any doctors that the malady would require going under the knife to repair, Johnson adds.
  • The Thunder recalled Josh Huestis from their D-League affiliate, the team announced via press release.
  • The Celtics have recalled Coty Clarke and James Young from their D-League affiliate in Maine, the team announced. This concludes Clarke’s second assignment to the Red Claws and Young’s 11th.

Chuck Myron contributed to this post.

Atlantic Notes: Lin, D-League, Cleamons

Jeremy Lin isn’t interested in discussing the pointed comments that Amar’e Stoudemire had made regarding some Knicks players being unhappy with Lin’s rapid rise to stardom during the 2011/12 season, Daniel Popper of The New York Daily News writes. “I can’t speak on behalf of somebody else talking about somebody else,” Lin told Popper. “When you talk about journalism or being a professional or whatever, that’s not really what I like to do. I don’t like to guess or assume or predict or whatever. So I’m just going to stay out of it.” The assumption was made that Stoudemire was referring to Carmelo Anthony, though Stoudemire later denied that he was talking about the small forward. For what it’s worth, Lin said his relationship with ‘Melo during their stint together was fine, Popper adds. “He was always nice to me. He took us out to eat,” Lin said. “I’ve hung out with him a few times and stuff. And so, like I’ve said for a long time, I’ve never had issues with him.

Lin’s contract with the Hornets includes a player option for next season, and when asked if the chances of him opting out and returning to New York would increase if Anthony was no longer with the team, Lin told Popper that there were “many factors at play.” The point guard said his agent reached out to the Knicks last summer but was told the team had no interest, the Daily News scribe notes.

Here’s more from the Atlantic Division:

  • Knicks assistant Jim Cleamons is interested in the vacant head coaching position at the University of Pittsburgh, Paul Zeise of 93.7 The Fan relays (Twitter link). Cleamons previously coached college ball for Youngstown State in the late 1980s and owns a career NCAA mark of 12-44.
  • The Nets may need to look overseas and to other undervalued markets in order to find impact players this summer, Tim Bontemps of The Washington Post writes. While Brooklyn is expected to have in the range of $40MM in cap space, the projected jump in the cap means that there will be plenty of competition for free agents, Bontemps notes.
  • The Celtics have assigned swingman James Young and power forward Coty Clarke to their D-League affiliate, the team announced. This will be Young’s 11th assignment on the season to Maine and Clarke’s second.

Celtics Sign Coty Clarke To Second 10-Day Deal

FRIDAY, 9:24am: The signing is official, the team announced.

THURSDAY, 5:40pm: The Celtics will sign Coty Clarke to a second 10-day contract, a source told Adam Himmelsbach of the Boston Globe (Twitter link).

Clarke, a 6’7” combo forward out of Arkansas, has played just three minutes in two games with the Celtics thus far and also had a stint with the team’s D-League affiliate in Maine during that span. Clarke was the team’s choice to fill the roster opening when it reached a buyout agreement with David Lee. Lee signed with the Mavericks after clearing waivers.

He has spent most of the season with the Red Claws, appearing in 40 games and averaging 16.1 points, 7.4 rebounds and 2.5 assists in 25.9 minutes.

“Our front office has been thrilled about him and thrilled about his play in Maine the whole year,” Coach Brad Stevens recently told the Celtics media. “We obviously have a familiarity with him from being here in the fall and so we thought it was a great opportunity to bring a guy on board while we have some practice time to really get a chance to evaluate him within our system, with our team, as the season has progressed.”

This season has represented a return stateside for the former University of Arkansas player who spent last season with Hapoel Kazrin in Israel after going undrafted in 2014. He gives the team additional depth at the forward spot with Jae Crowder expected to sit out at least two more weeks with an ankle injury.

Atlantic Notes: Clarke, Turner, Kilpatrick, D-League

Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge stayed away from the buyout market, grabbing D-League star Coty Clarke over some of the bigger names that were available, writes Gary Washburn of The Boston Globe. Boston, after waiving little-used David Lee, hardly made any pursuit of Joe Johnson, Kevin Martin, Ty Lawson or any of the other veterans who hit the open market. Instead, Ainge opted for Clarke, who has yet to play after signing a 10-day contract Monday. “We thought Coty was the best guy available,” Ainge said. “He’s had a terrific year in Maine. He’s been with our organization all year. He knows our stuff and there’s a little bit of continuity there. There’s some carryover to what our players do in [Maine] and what our players do in Boston. So we thought it was the easiest transition. And we didn’t desperately need someone that was out there. Like, for example, David Lee was a terrific player, but we had too many guys at that position. So Coty is a little bit different in that he can shoot the 3-ball and switch and guard multiple positions.”

There’s more on the Celtics and the rest of the Atlantic Division:

  • Ainge is hoping the team can reach a long-term deal to keep Evan Turner in Boston, Washburn writes in the same story. The impending free agent swingman has developed into a reliable reserve, averaging 10 points, 4.9 rebounds and 4.5 assists while playing about 27 minutes per game. “As you know, I’m a fan of Evan, and I think he’s had a really good year,” Ainge said. “I think he’s had a good two years [with the Celtics]. He won a lot of games for us. Down the stretch of games, he’s a good guy to have on your team. He’s a versatile player. He plays multiple positions.”
  • The Nets are happy with the production they’ve gotten from Sean Kilpatrick, who signed a second 10-day contract with the team Wednesday, according to NetsDaily. Part of the youth movement new GM Sean Marks has instituted, the 26-year-old shooting guard has averaged 9.4 points per game while shooting 50% from 3-point range during his time with Brooklyn.
  • The Celtics recalled James Young from their D-League affiliate in Maine and sent Jordan Mickey to the Red Claws, the team tweeted today.
  • The Raptors recalled Bruno Caboclo from Raptors 905 in the D-League, according to a tweet from the organization.

Atlantic Notes: Rambis, ‘Melo, Carroll, Ainge

Knicks president Phil Jackson acknowledges he has a close relationship with Kurt Rambis and that he talks more frequently with the interim coach than with former coach Derek Fisher, as Ian Begley of relays from the Zen Master’s chat with reporters today (Twitter link). Jackson wouldn’t commit to keeping Rambis beyond the season but hinted that he’d like to see him earn the removal of his interim tag, observes Frank Isola of the New York Daily News (on Twitter), which jibes with an earlier report that Jackson was pulling for Rambis to win the permanent job when he named him interim boss. Jackson didn’t appear eager to move on from Carmelo Anthony either, saying he still feels as though ‘Melo is a franchise cornerstone, Begley relays (Twitter link). Jackson cited the team’s system when he said he’s not going to obsess over chasing an elite point guard in free agency this summer, according to Begley (via Twitter), so the triangle remains at the heart of all things Knicks. See more from the Atlantic Division:

  • DeMarre Carroll is likely to return later this month, according to Josh Lewenberg of, though the Raptors didn’t give a timeline today after he visited his surgeon, Sportsnet’s Michael Grange notes (Twitter link). Some questions existed about whether Carroll would return to play at all this season after he underwent right knee surgery in January, but it appears that dire outcome won’t come to pass.
  • Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge is the best negotiator Rockets GM Daryl Morey says he’s come across, tweets Jake Fischer of SI Now, relaying Morey’s comment from the MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference today. Ainge and Morey have only pulled off one trade, a three-teamer with the Trail Blazers in 2012 that sent Courtney Lee to Boston.
  • The Celtics have recalled Coty Clarke and Jordan Mickey from the D-League, the team announced (Twitter link). The pair, along with James Young, went to D-League Maine on Thursday for what turned out to be a one-game stay. Clarke, a 10-day signee, had a team-high 18 points on 6-of-7 shooting while Mickey scored 14.

Atlantic Notes: Porzingis, Biyombo, D-League

Knicks power forward Kristaps Porzingis denies that his struggles of late are because he hit the “rookie wall” and is worn down by the long NBA season, Stefan Bondy of The New York Daily News writes. “It happens. Bad games happen. Two or three games later I have a great game,” Porzingis said after scoring just six points against the Nuggets on Tuesday. “It’s just ups and downs, especially my rookie season. It’s all a learning experience, especially some games you don’t feel as well, some games you feel better. But I try to find that consistency where I can play at the same level. I’m not there yet.

Interim coach Kurt Rambis critiqued Porzingis’ shot selection, expressing a desire for the rookie to operate in the post area more, but Rambis still believes big things are ahead for the young Latvian, Bondy notes. “I’m not concerned at all. He’s still 20 years old. He’s got a lot to learn and my mindset is not going to change about him,” Rambis said. “He’s going to be great. There’s no doubt in my mind. But if we thought it was all going to happen this season, and he was going to be perfect and not make mistakes and going to do everything right, and he was going to solve all the mysteries of basketball this year, it just wasn’t going to happen.

Here’s more from the Atlantic Division:

  • Bismack Biyombo says he’s extremely happy with the Raptors and would love to remain in Toronto, Josh Lewenberg of TSN Sports relays (Twitter links). It’s unclear if Biyombo’s remarks indicate he intends to exercise his player option worth $2,940,630 for 2016/17 or if he is referring to opting out and seeking a long-term pact. The TSN scribe notes that Biyombo will likely have to sacrifice financially if he wishes to remain with the Raptors, with Toronto already committed to almost $70MM in guaranteed salary for next season.
  • The Celtics have assigned Coty Clarke, James Young and Jordan Mickey to their D-League affiliate, the team announced. This will be Clarke’s first official D-League assignment on the year, though he was a member of the Red Claws prior to signing his 10-day deal with Boston. Neither Young nor Mickey is a stranger to Maine, with this being Young’s 10th and Mickey’s 11th trip there this season.
  • The Raptors have recalled Bruno Caboclo, Lucas Nogueira and Delon Wright from their D-League affiliate, the team announced.

Atlantic Notes: Clarke, Kilpatrick, Marks, ‘Melo

Celtics 10-day signee Coty Clarke sought a meeting with D-League coach Scott Morrison earlier this season while he was playing a reserve role for the Boston affiliate, and after the two spoke about Clarke’s role and what the team needed from him, Morrison put him in the starting lineup and Clarke helped the team thrive, as Chris Reichert of Upside & Motor chronicles. The Maine Red Claws went 11-2 before the Celtics called up the combo forward on his 10-day deal this week, a signing that Chris Forsberg of examines.

“First and foremost, as I told our team [Monday], he was by no means given a 10-day. He was rewarded [for] his great play [in Maine],” Celtics coach Brad Stevens said, according to Forsberg. “He really has played great. Our front office has been thrilled about him and thrilled about his play in Maine the whole year. We obviously have a familiarity with him from being here in the fall and so we thought it was a great opportunity to bring a guy on board while we have some practice time to really get a chance to evaluate him within our system, with our team, as the season has progressed.”

See more from the Atlantic Division:

  • More Nets moves are to come soon as new GM Sean Marks operates quickly on multiple fronts, NetsDaily hears in the wake of the team’s hiring of Trajan Langdon as assistant GM Tuesday (Twitter link). Brooklyn has a decision to make regarding Sean Kilpatrick, whose 10-day contract expired overnight.
  • Marks has superb people skills, Hawks coach/executive Mike Budenholzer observed, and Chris Paul called him one of the best teammates he’s ever had as both displayed confidence in the new Nets GM, The Record’s Andy Vasquez details. “I’ve never been a GM or anything like that,” Paul said. “But I know his work ethic and what makes him who he is. … I’m biased. Sean’s a friend of mine. I’m rooting for him. I want to see him succeed and, like I said, with his drive and work ethic, I’m sure he won’t sleep until he turns it around.”
  • Interim Knicks coach Kurt Rambis has been clearer in communicating what he wants the Knicks to do on offense, while former coach Derek Fisher placed more of an emphasis on player development, as Carmelo Anthony observed this week, according to Marc Berman of the New York Post (Twitter link).