Daniel Nwaelele

Grizzlies Waive Daniel Nwaelele

The Grizzlies waived shooting guard Daniel Nwaelele on Monday, bringing their roster down to 19 players, the team announced via press release. The 6’5” Nwaelele was signed as a free agent late last month but had little chance to stick, since Memphis has 14 players with guaranteed contracts.

Nwaelele is headed to the Warriors’ D-League affiliate in Santa Cruz, international journalist David Pick reports.

Nwaelele has yet to appear on an NBA regular season roster, but he was with the Spurs for camp in 2013. He made the Warriors’ D-League team at an open tryout in 2012. He returned to the Warriors D-League team after his preseason stint with the Spurs, and in 2013/14, he averaged 12.4 points and 4.4 rebounds in 31.1 minutes per game. Prior to his D-League stints, Nwaelele played professionally in Israel.

The 31-year-old went undrafted out of the Air Force Academy in 2007 and then spent several years fulfilling his military commitment.

Grizzlies Sign Five For Camp

The Grizzlies have formally signed Yakhouba Diawara, Ryan Hollins, Michael Holyfield, Lazeric Jones and Daniel Nwaelele, the team announced via press release. All five moves were expected, based on previous reports. The moves give Memphis a full 20-man roster for the preseason, as our roster count shows. All are making the minimum salary, since the Grizzlies don’t have the capacity to give more after signing Brandan Wright for the mid-level exception earlier in the offseason, and all are reportedly non-guaranteed

Diawara, 33, returns to the NBA after an absence of more than five years. The native of France played last season in Italy. Shams Charania of Yahoo Sports first reported the deal between Memphis and the swingman.

Hollins, who turns 31 next month, gives the Grizzlies depth on the interior. Marc J. Spears of Yahoo Sports first reported the deal, and he and Chris Herrington of The Commercial Appeal had details about the arrangement, which covers one season.

Holyfield went undrafted this year out of Sam Houston State but joined the Grizzlies for summer league this year before formally signing with the team. Eric Pincus of Basketball Insiders first reported the deal for the center who turns 23 in November, revealing that it’s a one-year pact.

Jones is a 25-year-old point guard who went undrafted out of UCLA in 2012 and has spent time overseas since then, playing in Israel, Greece and Hungary. Charania first reported the deal, and Pincus reports that it’s a one-year contract.

Nwaelele is a 31-year-old Air Force veteran who’s spent much of his time since going undrafted in 2007 serving out his military commitment. Marc Stein of ESPN.com first reported the deal, which is a one-year arrangement, according to Pincus.

Grizzlies Sign Dan Nwaelele, Waive Christopher

FRIDAY, 5:58pm: The Nwaelele signing has taken place, and the Grizzlies have indeed waived Christopher, according to the RealGM transactions log. The team has yet to make any official announcement regarding either move.

THURSDAY, 8:47am: The Grizzlies will bring shooting guard Dan Nwaelele to training camp, reports Marc Stein of ESPN.com (Twitter link). Agent Dave Gasman confirms the deal via Twitter. The 31-year-old Nwaelele, who went undrafted out of the Air Force Academy in 2007, will replace Patrick Christopher, who won’t be with the team, according to Stein, despite having signed earlier this month. Memphis also reportedly struck a non-guaranteed deal Wednesday with Ryan Hollins, so the Grizzlies have signed contracts or verbal agreements with 19 players, not including Christopher. Fourteen of them have fully guaranteed deals.

Nwaelele has yet to appear on an NBA regular season roster, but he was with the Spurs for camp in 2013. He spent his first five post-college years serving an Air Force commitment, and he made the D-League affiliate of the Warriors at an open tryout in 2012. He returned to the Warriors D-League team after his preseason stint with the Spurs, and in 2013/14, he averaged 12.4 points and 4.4 rebounds in 31.1 minutes per game, with strong 41.6% three-point shooting.

Christopher was on a non-guaranteed minimum-salary contract, so Memphis isn’t eating any money as it lets him go. The swingman made his official NBA debut with the Jazz last season, but he has a history with the Grizzlies, who had him for the preseason last year but waived him prior to opening night.

Spurs Waive Courtney Fells And Dan Nwaelele

The Spurs announced this afternoon that they have waived guard/forward Courtney Fells and guard Dan Nwaelele.  Neither player was on a guaranteed contract for San Antonio.

Fells appeared in three preseason games, averaging 4.7 points and 3.3 rebounds in 12.4 minutes of action.  Nwaelele saw action in three preseason games, averaging 3.7 points and 1.7 rebounds in 12.3 minutes.  Coach Gregg Popovich gave both players minutes during crunch time in preseason action.

The Spurs have now cut five players in five days after axing Corey Maggette, Myck Kabongo, and Marcus Cousin on October 15th.  San Antonio now has 14 players on the roster and they’re all on guaranteed deals.  GM R.C. Buford & Co. are reportedly comfortable with starting the year one man shy of the maximum roster size.

Spurs Add Three To Camp Roster

The Spurs have finalized their roster for training camp, and there are three names on the list which hadn't previously been reported. According to Dan McCarney of the San Antonio Express-News (via Twitter), Marcus Cousin, Courtney Fells, and Daniel Nwaelele will be with the club in camp.

Cousin, 26, went undrafted in 2009 and has played for multiple D-League and international teams since then, as well as appearing in four games for the Jazz in 2011. The 6'11" big man was the leading scorer for Japan's Kyoto Hannaryz last season, averaging 14.5 PPG and 9.7 RPG in 57 contests.

Fells played his college ball in 2009 and, like Cousin, has bounced around since then. He played in Israel with Hapoel Jerusalem last season, and earned a spot on the Celtics' Summer League squad in July. As for Nwaelele, he was reportedly offered a contract by the Spurs back in 2007, but was still committed to service in the Air Force. The 6'5" guard finished his five-year commitment to the Air Force last year and joined the D-League's Santa Cruz Warriors for the 2012/13 season.

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