Devyn Marble

D-League Moves: Mavs, Warriors, Cavs, Magic

Mavs reserve point guard Ricky Ledo was in a three-way tie for the most D-League assignments this season when I examined D-League trends last week, but he’d been stuck on eight assignments for a while. He’d spent the early part of the season pinging back and forth between the Mavericks and the D-League Texas Legends, but his latest assignment stretched nearly a month. It’s over as of today, as the Mavs have recalled him, tweets Earl K. Sneed of The end of the stint, which began January 9th, is likely tied to Rajon Rondo‘s broken nose and orbital bone that will sideline the All-Star for at least three games. Ledo is far from the only one on the move today, as we detail:

  • Festus Ezeli has returned to the Warriors from his first D-League assignment of the season, the team announced. The former 30th overall pick blocked a total of six shots over 42 minutes in two games with the Santa Cruz Warriors, but he averaged only 10.0 points and 5.0 rebounds per contest.
  • The shuttle continues for Joe Harris, whom the Cavaliers have recalled from his fourth D-League stint in the past two weeks, the team announced. The rookie swingman has put up 18.8 PPG and 6.0 RPG in 34.3 MPG in four D-League appearances this season, all of them since January 21st.
  • The Magic have assigned Devyn Marble to the D-League for the second time this year, the team announced. The 56th pick from the 2014 draft, who’s started seven NBA games this season, spent nearly a week in the D-League a month ago, averaging 20.0 PPG in 38.0 MPG.
  • Former first-round picks Reggie Bullock and Archie Goodwin are officially back with the Suns after twin D-League assignments that began January 29th, the team announced. Paul Coro of the Arizona Republic reported Sunday that the recalls would take place.
  • The Clippers will reassign C.J. Wilcox to the Fort Wayne Mad Ants, a source tells Gino Pilato of D-League Digest (Twitter link).  Wilcox has appeared in five games for Fort Wayne this season, averaging 13.2 points and 3.4 rebounds per contest.

Southeast Notes: Heat, Jefferson, Magic, Hawks

Doomsday predictions for the Heat in the wake of losing LeBron James are starting to come true, and Jason Lieser of The Palm Beach Post reports that players are searching for answers. “I just don’t even know what the point of this season — I don’t know. I have no idea,” Chris Bosh said after Wednesday’s loss to the Pacers. After four straight trips to the NBA Finals, Miami is struggling through a season beset by injuries and adjustment to life without its former superstar.

There’s more from the Southeast Division:

  • Hornets coach Steve Clifford told Rick Bonnell of The Charlotte Observer that the decision to shut down Al Jefferson came midway through Monday’s loss to the Bucks. “At halftime we spoke and agreed that we were going to sit Al down and say, ‘We appreciate you want to play, but…’” Clifford said. “It’s great that he wants to be out there and is team-first and wants to play. But he just can’t move.” Jefferson has been diagnosed with a strained adductor muscle in his left groin and is expected to be out of action for at least four weeks.
  • Former Magic coach Stan Van Gundy likes Orlando’s roster but warns there will be some tough choices ahead, writes Josh Robbins of The Orlando Sentinel. “Like everybody, you get to the point in all of these projects where then you have to make decisions on money, and that’s actually in some ways tougher than assembling a lot of guys to begin with,” said Van Gundy, now coach and president of basketball operations for the Pistons. “Who are you going to pay and how much and how are you going to put the whole thing together?” Orlando’s decisions will start in July when Tobias Harris and Kyle O’Quinn are set to become restricted free agents.
  • The Magic have recalled Devyn Marble from the D-League, Robbins tweets.
  • The Hawks are among the best teams in the Eastern Conference, and Adam Fromal of Bleacher Report opines that they have a chance to be in that position for a long time. Atlanta has slightly more than $41MM committed in salary for next season, with Paul Millsap, DeMarre Carroll, Elton Brand and John Jenkins as expiring contracts. The Hawks also can exchange first-round draft picks with the Nets as one of the lingering benefits of the Joe Johnson trade, and they have an extra second-rounder coming from the Raptors.

D-League Notes: Capela, Ledo, Powell, Magic

As we wait to see if D-League standout Brady Heslip gets signed by an NBA club before he accepts an offer from a team overseas, let’s round up the latest from the NBA’s official minor league:

  • The Rockets have sent Clint Capela to the Rio Grande Valley Vipers, the team announced on Twitter. The 25th overall pick from last June’s draft hasn’t been able to get much burn in Houston’s crowded frontcourt, tallying just 12 minutes of action this season, so he’ll have a better shot to demonstrate his skills in the D-League.
  • Ricky Ledo and Dwight Powell have been assigned to the Texas Legends, the Mavs  announced. The pair will have a chance to see more time in the D-League than they otherwise would with the title hopeful group of veterans in Dallas.
  • Magic coach Jacque Vaughn made it clear that Orlando values the one-to-one affiliation that the team has with the Erie BayHawks, its D-League club, as John Denton of details. The Magic assigned Devyn Marble to the D-League yesterday in order to get him some playing time while recovering from an injury.

Eastern Notes: Williams, Marble, Tolliver

Nets point guard Deron Williams returned to action today but didn’t start the game out on the court. Williams said that he’s fine with coming off of the bench as long as the starters play well,  Mike Mazzeo of writes. “I’m all for the team. It doesn’t really matter to me,” said Williams. “I’m still trying to get my rhythm back and obviously I’m on a minutes restriction right now, so I’m all for it.” Williams has been the subject of trade rumors involving the Kings recently, but he did not want to address the subject, saying, “When a trade is final, then I’ll talk to y’all about trade rumors. How about that? When a trade happens I’ll talk about trade rumors because then it’ll actually be a trade.”

Here’s more from the East:

  • The Magic have assigned rookie Devyn Marble to the D-League, the team announced. Marble will join the Erie BayHawks after appearing in just five minutes of action for Orlando all season.
  • Cavs big man Anderson Varejao underwent successful surgery to repair his torn left Achilles tendon today, the team has announced. Varejao is expected to miss the remainder of the season.
  • Stan Van Gundy called the Pistons’ acquisition of Anthony Tolliver a “no-brainer” and labeled the veteran sharpshooter as a “solid pro with a very good contract,” notes Keith Langlois of

Charlie Adams contributed to this post.

Eastern Notes: Butler, Marble, Celtics

Jimmy Butler has been turning heads in Chicago with his play during training camp. The Bulls swingman is in better physical condition this year, but is also motivated by being eligible to sign a contract extension prior to the October 31st deadline, Nick Friedell of writes. “My confidence is high and that’s the way you have to play this game,” Butler said. “All summer I worked on my game, the biggest thing is just confidence, taking shots I know I can make. I’m really happy on the way that I’m going right now, but I still got to keep going.” If Butler and the team don’t come to terms on an extension by the deadline he will become a restricted free agent next summer.

Here’s more from the east:

  • The Celtics made a minor trade earlier today with the Pistons, shipping Joel Anthony to Detroit for Will Bynum. Chris Forsberg of examines what the trade does to Boston’s salary cap situation and the team’s rotation.
  • After a difficult season under former coach Mike Woodson, J.R. Smith is starting fresh with a clean slate, Fred Kerber of The New York Post writes. Knicks head coach Derek Fisher said of Smith, “What I’ve tried to do with all of our guys, not just J.R., is kind of manage our relationship based on our relationship and not the relationships they have may have had with other people, other coaches. Jay’s been great, and I don’t see any reason why he wouldn’t continue.”
  • In addition to fellow rookies Aaron Gordon and Elfrid Payton, Devyn Marble also hopes to make an impact for the Magic this season, Cody Taylor of Basketball Insiders writes. Orlando signed Marble to a three year deal with the first year fully guaranteed, which went a long way towards giving Marble confidence, notes Taylor. “It’s good to have peace of mind,” Marble said. “It’s something that you don’t necessarily have to worry about. For me, I’m still going to come ready to play and still continue to work hard; nothing is guaranteed even though it technically is. I’m still going to find ways to help and I would want to be here for the rest of my career. I’m just doing anything I can in the time frame now to help the team out.”

Trade Retrospective: Dwight Howard To Lakers

It’s an enormous gamble for franchises to trade away their superstars because there’s almost no way to get back equal value in return. Teams usually have to settle for quantity over quality, and have to bank on the returns panning out down the line, or being able to in turn, flip the acquired assets for another team’s star player in another deal. It’s a gamble either way you look at it, and might help in explaining the turnover rate of NBA GM’s.

The current Kevin Love situation playing out in Minnesota is a great example of this. Team president and coach Flip Saunders is still trying to decide whether or not to pull the trigger on the deal, and if he does, which package provides the best return? There’s no way to get equal value for a player of Love’s caliber, at least not for the coming season. If Saunders lands the right package it will benefit the Timberwolves more in the seasons to come, rather than during the 2014/15 campaign. This is true even if they do in fact land Andrew Wiggins, as most of the current rumors suggest.

Minnesota’s quandary made me want to take a look back at some other blockbuster trades where superstars changed hands, and to examine how the trades worked out for both sides. Since we’re discussing a big man, I decided to begin this series with a look back at the August 2012 deal that sent Dwight Howard from the Magic to the Lakers.

First let’s recap the trade, and all the assets and teams involved:

  1. The Lakers received Dwight Howard, Chris Duhon, and Earl Clark from the Magic.
  2. The Nuggets received Andre Iguodala from the Sixers.
  3. The Sixers received Andrew Bynum from the Lakers, and Jason Richardson from the Magic.
  4. The Magic received Arron Afflalo, Al Harrington, a 2014 first rounder from Denver via the Knicks (traded to Sixers for the rights to Elfrid Payton) and a 2013 second-round pick (Romero Osby) from the Nuggets; Maurice Harkless and Nikola Vucevic from the Sixers; Josh McRoberts, Christian Eyenga, a top-five protected first rounder in 2017, and a conditional second-rounder in 2015 from the Lakers (protected for picks 31-40).

Looking back at the trade from the Lakers’ perspective, it’s not as bad a deal as one would have thought, considering Howard ended up being a one-year rental. During Howard’s lone season in Los Angeles, he averaged 17.1 PPG, 12.4 RPG, and 2.4 BPG in 76 appearances. His time was most notable for his displeasure with then coach Mike D’Antoni‘s offensive system, and the perception that Howard wasn’t satisfied with being the second biggest star on the team after Kobe Bryant.

Los Angeles went 45-37 in Howard’s only season, earning the seventh seed in the playoffs, where they were swept in the first round by the Spurs. Howard then left the Lakers to sign a four-year, $87.59MM contract with the Rockets.

In retrospect, the Lakers didn’t surrender all that much for their one season of Howard. At the time giving up Andrew Bynum, who was coming off of a season where he averaged 18.7 PPG, 11.8 RPG, and 1.9 BPG, seemed like a gamble, considering re-signing Howard wasn’t guaranteed, but Bynum ended up missing the entire 2012/13 season, and he’s only appeared in a total of 26 games since then.

Josh McRoberts has turned out to be a valuable bench contributor, but he’s not a player who would have significantly changed the fortunes of the purple-and-gold. McRoberts was subsequently traded by Orlando to the Hornets for Hakim Warrick midway through the 2012/13 season, and most recently signed a four-year, $22.65MM deal with the Heat.

The biggest loss from the trade could turn out to be the 2017 first-rounder that went to Orlando. It’s top-five protected, which gives Los Angeles some margin for error. But unless the Lakers make a splash in free agency the next two summers, the loss of the pick will cost them a much needed cog in the rebuilding process, and will negatively impact the franchise. I would say that setback wouldn’t be worth the single season of Howard they received. The record the Lakers have compiled since the trade is 72-92, hardly the result they intended when making the deal.

The Nuggets received a big boost from Iguodala in his one season with the team. He averaged 13.0 PPG, 5.3 RPG, and 5.4 APG while appearing in 80 contests. Denver went 57-25 that year, securing the third seed in the playoffs, before getting ousted by the Warriors in the first round.

Iguodala then left the Nuggets in a sign-and-trade deal with the Warriors that netted them Randy Foye. The Nuggets also swapped 2018 second-rounders with Golden State as part of that trade.

Foye had a decent season last year, averaging 13.2 PPG, 2.9 RPG, and 3.5 APG in Denver. He actually outperformed Iguodala’s totals in Golden State, thanks to Iguodala being slowed by injuries for much of the year. Still, in the long term, Iguodala is a much more valuable player, especially on the defensive end.

From Denver’s perspective this trade wasn’t a great success. The one season of Iguodala cost them two excellent years from Afflalo, who averaged 16.5 PPG, 3.7 RPG, and 3.2 APG in 2012/13, and 18.2 PPG, 3.6 RPG, and 3.4 APG during the 2013/14 season, numbers that surpassed anything that Iguodala has provided in Denver or Golden State. Afflalo was re-acquired by Denver this summer in a trade with Orlando which sent Evan Fournier and the No. 56 pick (Devyn Marble) to the Magic. Since the 2012 trade, the Nuggets record is 93-71.

From the Sixers’ perspective, this trade wasn’t a great deal–unless you are on board with their perceived tanking, and the assets they are gathering as a result. The acquisition of Bynum, which at the time was looked at as a win, turned out to be a disaster. Iguodala was a team leader, extremely popular in Philadelphia, and arguably the team’s best player at the time. Bynum had injury and motivation issues, and he ended up being far more trouble than he was worth during his brief stay in Philadelphia.

The loss of Harkless and Vucevic also doesn’t help the trade look any better from Philadelphia’s perspective. Harkless hasn’t set the league on fire, but he averaged 8.2 PPG and 4.4 RPG during the 2012/13 campaign, and 7.4 PPG and 3.3 RPG in 2013/14. He’s still only 21 years old and could develop into a valuable rotation piece down the line.

Vucevic, still only 23 years old, has turned out to be a very productive big man for Orlando. He put up 13.1 PPG and 11.9 RPG in 2012/13, and then 14.2 PPG and 11.0 RPG last season, far better numbers than anything from either Bynum or Richardson, who averaged 10.5 PPG and 3.8 RPG during his one healthy season in Philly.

The Sixers have gone 53-111 since the trade, a ghastly mark that stands in stark contrast to what they were envisioning when making the deal. They couldn’t have anticipated the injuries to Bynum, but that’s the risk a franchise takes with any transaction.

Finally, we come to the Magic. They were in a similar position to the one that Minnesota now finds itself in. They had a disgruntled superstar who wanted out, and they didn’t want to risk losing Howard for nothing if he left as a free agent. So, they made the difficult decision to deal away their franchise player.

After running through what the other teams received, and the minimal returns those assets provided, this might be one of the rare cases where the team trading away the best player actually came out on top.

As I’ve previously mentioned, Afflalo gave them two solid seasons, and Orlando probably should have retained him for another year, considering his talent level and affordable contract. Harkless has given Orlando decent production, and he hasn’t reached his full potential yet.

But the big prize was Vucevic. Productive big men are at a premium in the league, and he is still improving as a player. The problem will come after this season. Vucevic is eligible to sign an extension this summer, or he’ll become a restricted free agent in 2015. He won’t come cheap, and the Magic will have to decide if he’s worth the $10-15MM per season he will most likely seek in his new contract.

The final piece to this trade is Payton. If he can develop into a reliable starter, this trade will look better from Orlando’s perspective. Payton’s presence will allow Victor Oladipo to return to his natural position at shooting guard and reduce his ball-handling duties. The knock on Payton is his lack of a reliable jump shot, and with his questionable mechanics, it might not be a part of his game that will ever stand out. But if he can improve his defense, stay away from turnovers, and facilitate the offense effectively, he’ll be a valuable piece of the puzzle going forward.

Despite “winning” this trade, it hasn’t been reflected in the standings. Orlando has gone 43-121 since dealing away Howard. So, despite acquiring some intriguing building blocks, it also proves that one star player is far more valuable than a roster of good ones. Minnesota, take heed. You might have no choice but to trade Love, but no matter the return, your ranking in the Western Conference most likely won’t improve over the next few seasons.

And-Ones: Love, Harris, Marble, Monroe

The market for Kevin Love is likely less active than reports have been indicating, observes Sam Amico of Fox Sports Ohio, who suggests that Flip Saunders probably isn’t deciding between a multitude of remarkable offers, but is instead patiently waiting, hoping for an exciting proposal to come in soon. Here’s tonight’s look around the NBA..

  • One league source told Amico that the flux of rumors based around a potential Love/Wiggins swap is “textbook Flip,” implying that Saunders is leaking information that he thinks could benefit the Wolves’ return on a Love deal. Amico wouldn’t confirm or deny the source’s speculation, however.
  • Joe Harris‘ deal with the Cavs and Devyn Marble‘s with the Magic are structured almost exactly the same way, reveals Mark Deeks of ShamSports (on Twitter). Each rookie will make $884,879 in the first season, $845,059 in the following campaign, and $980,431 during the third and final year of the deal. However, unlike Harris’ agreement, Marble’s contract becomes non-guaranteed past the first season, according to Deeks.
  • Lang Greene of Basketball Insiders looks at the options on the table for restricted free agent Greg Monroe. Greene thinks that like all of the game’s best big men, Monroe will get a hefty pay day eventually; it’s just a question of when it’ll be. Should Monroe decide to sign his qualifying offer this summer, he’ll be forfeiting potential earnings for the upcoming season but opening up the door to become an unrestricted free agent next offseason.

Magic Sign Devyn Marble

11:12am: The deal is official, the Magic announced via press release.

10:59pm: The sides have an agreement in principle on a three-year deal that’s fully guaranteed for the first season, Robbins writes in his full story. Since it’s for three years, that means the Magic are indeed using cap space.

10:52am: The Magic are on track to sign No. 56 overall pick Devyn Marble as soon as later today, reports Josh Robbins of the Orlando Sentinel (Twitter link). The rights to the former Iowa shooting guard went from Denver to Orlando as part of last month’s Arron Afflalo trade.

Marble, the son of former NBA player Roy Marble, showed steady improvement over his final three seasons with the Hawkeyes, averaging 17.0 points in 30.2 minutes per game with 34.9% three-point shooting as a senior. He aligned himself with another former NBA player when he chose B.J. Armstrong as his agent.

Orlando will likely use some of its ample cap space on what’s probably a deal for the minimum salary. It would be somewhat surprising if it were fully guaranteed, as such deals aren’t too common for late second-round picks. The Magic appear to be coming to a much quicker resolution with their second-rounder this year than they did last summer, when they didn’t officially have a contract with No. 51 overall pick Romero Osby until September 27th.

Draft Notes: Clippers, Vonleh, Hornets, Hairston

The Clippers are interested in trading up from pick No. 28, reports Ramona Shelburne of Shelburne’s piece centers on a profile of former University of Colorado guard Spencer Dinwiddie, who can’t work out because he’s still recovering from a torn ACL. Dinwiddie’s nonetheless had meetings with the Bucks, Wizards, Bulls and Celtics, and he’s scheduled interviews and physicals with the Clippers, Heat, Hawks and Thunder, according to Shelburne. The ESPN scribe also says that he’ll interview and take a physical for the Jazz, advancing an earlier report that he was set to interview with the team. Here’s more on the draft:

  • Julius Randle is set to work out for the Jazz tomorrow, tweets Utah’s radio announcer David Locke.
  • Marcus Smart and Elfrid Payton are expected to work out for the Lakers on Friday for the second time, tweets Dave McMenamin of Marc J. Spears of Yahoo! Sports Spears advises his readers to “keep an eye” on Payton (via Twitter) in light of the second workout.
  • Nik Stauskas is expected in for his first workout with the Lakers, who have struggled to get Stauskas in, tweets Eric Pincus of The Los Angeles Times.
  • Rodney Hood had to sit out most of his Hornets workout today due to illness, reports Rick Bonnell of The Charlotte Observer.
  • Gary Harris and Zach LaVine will work out for the Hornets tomorrow, tweets Bonnell, who adds Charlotte’s other new workout appointees in a separate tweet: Rion Brown; Ronald Roberts Jr.; and Markel Brown, who missed an earlier workout due to travel issues.
  • The Rockets worked out Shabazz Napier, Xavier Thames, Patric Young, Nick Russell, and Kadeem Coleby, tweets Michael Scotto of Sheridan Hoops.
  • Sim Bhullar, Earnest Ross, Ian Chiles, Cameron Clark, Philipp Neumann, and Jordan Bachynski will work out for the Wizards tomorrow, tweets J. Michael of

Earlier updates:

  • Noah Vonleh will work out for the Sixers on Thursday, a source tells Marc J. Spears of Yahoo! Sports (Twitter link).
  • Elfrid Payton, Josh Huestis, James Bell and Jordan Clarkson are the previously unreported prospects performing for the Hornets today, as Chris Littmann of The Sporting News tweets.
  • P.J. Hairston will audition for the Hawks, as he tells Rick Bonnell of the Charlotte Observer, who also reports that Hairston will show off for the Grizzlies, Lakers and Bulls (Twitter links).
  • Kyle Anderson will work out for the Suns, reports Marc J. Spears of Yahoo! Sports, as well as the Grizzlies, according to Adam Zagoria of (Twitter links). A previous report indicated that the Suns were set to audition Anderson a week ago, so this appears to be his second workout with Phoenix.
  • Anderson will also perform for the Bulls, as will Clint Capela and DeAndre Daniels, Zagoria tweets.
  • Jordan Adams, Devyn Marble, Sean Kilpatrick, C.J. Wilcox and Jarnell Stokes are working out for the Raptors today, the team announced. A report from last month indicated that Stokes had already worked out for Toronto, but given that the dispatch came in the middle of the draft combine, I wouldn’t be surprised if that was actually an interview between Stokes and the club, rather than a workout.
  • The Wizards are auditioning Semaj Christon, Nick Johnson, Deonte Burton, Alec Brown and Khem Birch today, according to Michael Scotto of SheridanHoops (on Twitter).

Eastern Notes: Rambis, Jefferson, Snell, Sixers

The Lakers have granted the Knicks permission to interview assistant coach Kurt Rambis for a job on head coach Derek Fisher‘s staff, reports Mark Medina of the Los Angeles Daily News. Rambis is willing to listen, Medina hears. Rambis also remains a candidate for the Lakers head coaching job, but it’s uncertain whether he’d be retained as a Lakers assistant if they go with someone else for the head job, as Medina points out. Here’s more news related to Eastern Conference teams:

  • Al Jefferson is recruiting free agents to come to Charlotte, and Hornets coach Steve Clifford is confident that the mere presence of the Third-Team All-NBA center makes the Hornets more attractive to potential signees, writes Rick Bonnell of the Charlotte Observer.
  • The Bulls remain sold on Tony Snell as a rotation-caliber talent, as K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune details in his latest mailbag column. Johnson also says he’d be “shocked” if the Bulls don’t address their shooting via the draft.
  • The New Jersey state government gave the OK this morning for the Sixers to build a practice facility in Camden, reports Julia Terruso of the Philadelphia Inquirer, prompting the team to announce plans for the facility. GM Sam Hinkie and coach Brett Brown have contended that the facility will be key to attracting free agents.
  • The Celtics are among the teams that have worked out draft lottery prospect Doug McDermott, as Chad Ford of notes in his Insider-only mock draft.
  • Isaiah Austin and Cory Jefferson will audition for the Pistons, tweets Vince Ellis of the Detroit Free Press.
  • The Wizards will work out LaQuinton Ross, Devyn Marble, Jarell Eddie, Okaro White and Kendall Williams, the team announced.
  • Semaj Christon, DeAndre Kane, Drew Crawford, Sebastian Koch and Talib Zanna are among those who’ll perform for the Hornets on Wednesday, according to Rick Bonnell of the Charlotte Observer (Twitter links). Crawford was also scheduled to show off for the team last week.
  • Alex Kirk is working out for the Hornets this week, too, and he’ll also do so for the Raptors, tweets Adam Zagoria of