Deonte Burton (Iowa State)

USA Basketball Announces February AmeriCup Qualifying Roster

USA Basketball has announced its 12-man roster for a pair of AmeriCup qualifying games that will be played later this month, according to a press release written by Michael Terry. The Americans will host Cuba in Kissimmee, Florida, on February 22, then will travel to Cuba for a second game on Feb. 25.

The roster is as follows:

Ten of the 12 players have at least some level of NBA experience, with Davis and Jayce Johnson the only exceptions. Carter-Williams, Stanley Johnson, and Payton are all former lottery picks. None of those 10 players are currently on NBA rosters, however, with Hurt being the most recent to play in the league (with Memphis on a 10-day hardship contract).

As previously reported, Jerome Allen will be the head coach for this round of qualifying games, with Melvin Hunt, Sydney Johnson and Bill Bayno serving as assistants. Bayno will also be a scout, per the release. Allen, Hunt and Bayno are all former NBA assistant coaches.

As Terry writes, the two qualifying games this month are the first of three qualifying windows ahead of the 2025 AmeriCup. In the other two qualifying windows, held Nov. 2024 and Feb. 2025, the U.S. will face Puerto Rico and the Bahamas, respectively.

Per the release, qualifying rounds consist of 16 teams distributed into four, four-team groups. Each team will play each opponent in their group twice, once at home and once away. The top three teams in each group (12 total) will advance to next year’s AmeriCup, which will occur Aug. 23-31, 2025, in Managua, Nicaragua.

Team USA has won the AmeriCup seven times, according to Terry, with the last victory coming in 2017. The Americans won bronze in 2022, which was the last time the tournament was held.

Chance Comanche, Deonte Burton Waived By Kings

The Kings have waived both center Chance Comanche and wing Deonte Burton, according to James Ham of The Kings Beat (Twitter link). Ham adds that the expectation is that both players will join the Stockton Kings, assuming they clear waivers.

Since Comanche and Burton signed Exhibit 10 contracts, they’ll both be eligible to receive a $75K bonus if they spend at least 60 days with Stockton. Both players have three or more years of experience in the G League and spent time in Stockton last season.

Comanche signed with the Kings on September 21 after averaging 12.9 points, 7.3 rebounds and 1.4 blocks across 43 regular season and Showcase Cup games with Stockton last season. His strong efforts in the G League turned into a 10-day contract with the Trail Blazers in April, and he put up seven points and three boards in one appearance with Portland. He did not appear in any preseason games with Sacramento this season.

Burton, who signed on September 23, averaged 11.5 points across 33 total appearances with the Stockton Kings last season. He holds averages of 2.5 points and 1.2 rebounds in 73 career NBA games. His play in the G League last season also resulted in a 10-day contract, but Burton’s was with the Kings, though he only appeared in two games and didn’t record a stat. Burton appeared in one preseason game with Sacramento this year.

After waiving Comanche and Burton, the Kings’ roster now stands at 18 players, with Jaylen Nowell the only currently signed Exhibit 10 player on the roster. Sacramento has one open spot for its 15-man regular season roster, so it’s possible the Kings are eyeing Nowell for that spot. It’s likely the team will cycle through more Exhibit 10 players for G League purposes in the coming days.

Kings Sign Deonte Burton

The Kings have signed free agent guard/forward Deonte Burton to a contract, according to RealGM’s NBA transaction log. The move was first reported by Sactown Sports 1140’s Brenden Nunes (Twitter link).

While the exact details of the deal aren’t known, it’s a safe bet that it’s a non-guaranteed camp contract with Exhibit 10 language.

Burton, 29, has 73 games of NBA experience across three seasons with Oklahoma City and Sacramento, with the majority of his time in the league coming from 2018-20 with the Thunder. The former Iowa State wing began his professional career in South Korea’s Korean Basketball League, where he won the KBL Foreign MVP Award after averaging 23.8 points.

His overseas scoring antics captured the attention of the Thunder in 2018, who signed him to a two-way deal before converting him to a standard contract in 2019. Burton then spent the past couple seasons in the G League, first with the Maine Celtics in 2021/22 and then the Stockton Kings for most of ’22/23. He earned a brief call-up with Sacramento last season on a 10-day deal, but did not close out the season with the Kings after being waived in February.

Having signed Burton, the Kings have 19 players under contract, with 14 on standard deals, three on two-way contracts, and Burton and Chance Comanche on training camp deals.

The Kings aren’t in the tax and could add a 15th player to a standard deal — it’s possible they’ll use training camp as an audition for that spot. It’s unclear what Sacramento plans to do with that opening but there’s technically a route for Burton to make the regular season roster if he impresses in camp.

If Burton’s contract includes Exhibit 10 language, he would be eligible for a bonus worth up to $75K if he’s waived before the season starts and spends at least 60 days with Sacramento’s G League affiliate in Stockton.

And-Ones: World Cup Qualifiers, Nike Summit, MVP Race, Rising Stars, Draft

With two more qualifying matches for the 2023 World Cup right around the corner, USA Basketball has officially announced the 12-man roster that will compete in February’s games. Team USA’s squad is made up primarily of G Leaguers, but features a number of players with NBA experience.

The 12 players who will represent the U.S. on February 23 vs. Uruguay and Feb. 26 vs. Brazil are Deonte Burton, Will Davis II, Abdul Gaddy, Langston Galloway, Treveon Graham, Dusty Hannahs, Nate Hinton, Jay Huff, Xavier Moon, Elijah Pemberton, Reggie Perry, and Craig Sword.

So far, Canada is the only team in the Americas field to qualify for the 2023 World Cup, having won all of its first 10 qualifying contests. However, Team USA – which has an 8-2 record so far – will clinch a World Cup berth by winning either one of its two games this month, tweets Jeff Zillgitt of USA Today.

Meanwhile, USA Basketball also announced the rosters for the 2023 Nike Hoop Summit, an annual showcase of U.S. high school prospects that will take place on April 8. The most notable name on the men’s roster is Bronny James, but Bronny isn’t the only son of a former Cavaliers lottery pick to be named to the event — the 13-player roster also includes Dajuan Wagner Jr.

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

  • Nuggets center Nikola Jokic is building a strong case for his third consecutive MVP award and leads the way in the latest straw poll conducted by ESPN’s Tim Bontemps. Bontemps’ survey asks 100 media members for their current MVP ballots — Jokic received 77 first-place votes, easily besting runners-up Giannis Antetokounmpo of the Bucks (11 first-place votes) and Joel Embiid of the Sixers (6).
  • Rockets guard Jalen Green (left groin strain) and Pistons center Jalen Duren (right ankle sprain) have been forced to withdraw from Friday night’s Rising Stars event at All-Star weekend due to injuries, according to the NBA (Twitter link). They’re being replaced by Bulls guard Ayo Dosunmu and Rockets forward Tari Eason.
  • In his latest mock draft for The Athletic, Sam Vecenie moves Alabama wing Brandon Miller up to No. 3, writing that Miller is considered the safest bet in the 2023 draft class – outside of Victor Wembanyama and Scoot Henderson – to be a “really good player” at the NBA level. Vecenie’s top five is rounded out by Overtime Elite guard Amen Thompson at No. 4 and Houston forward Jarace Walker at No. 5.

Kings Acquire Kessler Edwards From Nets

6:05pm: The trade is now official, the Nets announced in a press release. Brooklyn received the draft rights to David Michineau, who currently plays for Napoli Basket in Italy’s Lega Basket Serie A, to complete the deal.

3:39pm: The Kings and Nets have finalized an agreement, a league source tells James Ham of The Kings Beat (Twitter links). Ham confirms that Sacramento will end Burton’s 10-day contract a little early to open up a roster spot for Edwards.

2:54am: The Kings and Nets are close to reaching an agreement on a trade that would send forward Kessler Edwards to Sacramento, reports Shams Charania of The Athletic (Twitter link).

According to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN (Twitter link), the deal will send Edwards and cash to Sacramento. It’s essentially a salary dump, since moving off Edwards’ minimum-salary contract will save the Nets approximately $8MM in salary and tax money in addition to opening up a roster spot, per Wojnarowski.

As Wojnarowski notes, Edwards must sign off on the trade, since the terms of his deal with Brooklyn give him the ability to veto a trade. He intends to approve it, according to Woj (Twitter link).

The 44th overall pick in the 2021 draft, Edwards signed a two-year contract with the Nets this past offseason after spending his rookie year on a two-way deal that includes a second-year team option. He showed promise in a limited role last season, averaging 5.9 PPG and 3.6 RPG on .412/.353/.842 shooting.

However, Edwards hasn’t seen regular playing time in 2022/23, logging 79 total minutes across 14 contests. He has scored just 15 points on 6-of-24 (25.0%) shooting for the season.

It’s unclear whether Edwards will finish the season with Sacramento. According to Wojnarowski, the club’s plan for now is to give him the opportunity to play for its G League team, the Stockton Kings, but Woj says his future remains “fluid” with two days to go until the trade deadline. It sounds like if Sacramento needs to open a roster spot at the deadline, Edwards would probably be the odd man out.

The Kings technically have a full 15-man roster for now, but one of those spots is occupied by Deonte Burton, who is on a 10-day contract that expires Wednesday night. His deal may be terminated a little early to accommodate the acquisition of Edwards.

As for the Nets, they’ll create a trade exception worth approximately $1.6MM (Edwards’ salary), but the financial savings and the newly opened roster spot will likely end up being more valuable than that exception.

Kings Part With PJ Dozier, Give 10-Day Deal To Deonte Burton

JANUARY 30: Burton’s signing is official, tweets Jason Anderson of The Sacramento Bee.

JANUARY 28: The Kings won’t re-sign guard PJ Dozier, whose second 10-day contract expired on Saturday night, tweets Chris Biderman of The Sacramento Bee.

The open roster spot will go to Deonte Burton, who is currently with the team’s G League affiliate in Stockton. Burton will receive a 10-day contract that will begin Monday to make him eligible for that night’s game at Minnesota.

A 28-year-old swingman, Burton spent two seasons with the Thunder before becoming a free agent in 2020. The former Iowa State standout has been in the G League since then, playing last year with the Maine Celtics before joining Stockton prior to the start of this season. Burton appeared in 71 total games for Oklahoma City, averaging 2.6 points and 1.2 rebounds in 8.4 minutes per night.

Dozier got into four games during his time with Sacramento and played 10 total minutes. Because players are limited to two 10-day contracts with one team, the Kings would have needed to sign him for the rest of the season to keep him on the roster.

Thunder Notes: Coaching Staff, Burton, Gray

The Thunder officially announced Mark Daigneault‘s coaching staff today, confirming in a press release that Mike Wilks, Dave Bliss, and David Akinyooye will return to the team as assistants, while Zach Peterson and Kameron Woods will be back as player development coaches.

The team also confirmed that former Knicks interim coach Mike Miller has been hired as an assistant, as reported earlier today. However, otherwise the group looks similar to last year — which makes sense, considering Daigneault himself was a Thunder assistant in 2019/20 before receiving a promotion this fall.

“This group has proven to be great collaborators during their time with the Thunder, complementing their ability to help develop our team and players,” Daigneault said. “They all share a deep commitment and understanding for the values of the organization and are dedicated to being continuous learners. I’m looking forward to welcoming Mike to the Thunder and our coaching staff as we work to maximize our team and program.”

Here’s more on the Thunder:

  • Although he had his team option turned down last week by the team, free agent wing Deonte Burton remains on the Thunder’s radar, says Ian Begley of According to Begley, scouts who watched Burton last season were impressed by his defense and athleticism, and believe he has some upside. He’s drawing interest from other teams besides Oklahoma City, Begley adds.
  • A source tells John Hollinger of The Athletic that Josh Gray – who was signed-and-traded from the Pelicans to the Thunder in the Steven Adams deal – was just days away from agreeing to sign with a Turkish team for a “tiny fraction” of the $1.62MM he got as a result of the sign-and-trade. It’s not clear whether or not Gray is in OKC’s plans for 2020/21, but he’ll get paid either way — his first-year salary had to be guaranteed as part of the transaction to make salary-matching work.
  • In case you missed it last night, the Thunder generated another huge trade exception (worth $19.5MM) by getting involved in the Hawks’ Danilo Gallinari signing to turn it into a sign-and-trade.

Thunder Decline Option On Deonte Burton

The Thunder will not exercise their $1,663,861 third-year team option on 6’4″ wing Deonte Burton, making him an unrestricted free agent, Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports tweets.

The move will enable Oklahoma City general manager Sam Presti to open up a roster spot and generate a little added cap flexibility, as the team might be very active in draft-day dealmaking. Haynes notes that the Thunder may be open to bringing the 26-year-old Burton back.

Burton went undrafted in 2017 out of Iowa State. He had been on the Thunder roster since the 2018/19 season, when he started out by signing a two-way contract with the club before agreeing to a standard contract in March 2019. Burton played 39 games with the club last season, averaging 9.1 minutes per night.

Joe Mussatto of The Oklahoman notes that, with Burton clearing their books, the Thunder now have only 13 players under contract for next season, including third-year wing Hamidou Diallo, for whom they have an identical $1,663,861 team option, and veteran big man Mike Muscala, who has yet to exercise his $2,283,034 player option.

NBA G League Assignments/Recalls: 3/1/20

Here are Sunday’s assignments and recalls from across the NBA G League:

NBA G League Assignments/Recalls: 2/29/20

Here are Saturday’s G League assignments and recalls from around the NBA: