Frank Jackson

And-Ones: Howard, Team USA, F. Jackson, Zikarsky

Longtime NBA center Dwight Howard was out of the league during the 2022/23 season, which he spent in Taiwan. However, he still believes he can be a productive player in an NBA rotation, he said during a wide-ranging interview with Zion Olojede of

“I know that there’s at least 15 to 20 teams that I could play for,” Howard said. “And I know there’s teams that got great starting centers, but I know I could be a great backup center. I know I can provide a team with 25 minutes of dominant basketball. And that’s not even scoring, that’s just playing defense, locking people up, protecting the paint, rebounding, and finishing around the basket. I’ve had my fun in the game. I just want to go out like a champ like I’m supposed to.”

Referencing a June interview in which Howard said he’d love to join the Kings, Olojede asked the three-time Defensive Player of the Year which five teams he believes would be good matches for him.

“Okay, you got Miami Heat. You got obviously, the Lakers. The Warriors,” Howard said. “The Kings. But the Kings, I would say the Kings got a couple centers so they probably wouldn’t. But the Kings. The Hawks. I’m from Atlanta, go back home with the Hawks.”

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

  • Discussing his roster for the upcoming FIBA World Cup for the first time on Friday, Team USA head coach Steve Kerr said he plans to lean heavily on Knicks guard Jalen Brunson and Nets forward Mikal Bridges. As Joe Vardon of The Athletic writes, Kerr envisions Brunson having “a pretty big role” and intends to rely on Bridges defensively to match up against opponents’ high-scoring wings.
  • Veteran NBA guard Frank Jackson, who had a brief stint with the Jazz this past season, will continue his career overseas, having signed a deal with French team ASVEL, per a press release. Jackson had appeared in 214 career regular season NBA games since being drafted in 2017.
  • Rocco Zikarsky, a 7’3″ Australian big man, has decided to forgo a move to the NCAA in favor of joining the Brisbane Bullets as part of the National Basketball League’s Next Stars program, he tells Jonathan Givony of ESPN. Zikarsky, who will turn 17 next week, won’t be draft-eligible until at least 2025, but is considered one of the world’s best basketball prospects, per Givony.
  • John Hollinger of The Athletic doesn’t want to go so far as to call them the “losers” of free agency, but has questions about the offseason moves made so far by the Raptors, Pelicans, Kings, Trail Blazers, and Nuggets.

Jazz Sign Kris Dunn To Second 10-Day Contract

11:07am: Dunn’s second 10-day deal with the Jazz is now official, per’s transaction log. It will cover Utah’s next five games.

7:09am: Kris Dunn‘s 10-day contract with the Jazz expired after Friday’s game, but the veteran guard isn’t going anywhere. Utah intends to sign Dunn to a second 10-day deal, sources with knowledge of the situation tell Sarah Todd of The Deseret News (Twitter link).

Dunn, who joined the Jazz following a stint in the G League, immediately claimed a spot in the rotation during his first 10 days with his new team, helping to fill in for injured guards Collin Sexton and Jordan Clarkson.

The former fifth overall pick averaged 12.0 points, 4.5 assists, 3.8 rebounds, and 2.0 assists in 22.3 minutes per night across four appearances. A career 42.0% shooter from the floor entering this season, Dunn has scored more efficiently in his first few games in Utah, making 52.5% of his field goal attempts.

A player is permitted to sign up to two 10-day contracts with the same team in a given season, so at the end of his second 10-day deal, Utah will have to decide whether to sign Dunn for the rest of the season or let him walk.

Frank Jackson‘s 10-day contract with the Jazz also expired following Friday’s game, but the team’s plans for him aren’t yet clear. Unlike Dunn, Jackson didn’t play a regular role on his first 10-day deal, logging just five minutes in a single appearance.

Even after re-signing Dunn, Utah will have two openings on its 15-man roster, giving the club plenty of flexibility to audition other players 10 days at a time.

Jazz Sign Frank Jackson, Kris Dunn To 10-Day Contracts

FEBRUARY 22: The Jazz have officially signed both Jackson and Dunn to 10-day contracts, the team confirmed today in a press release. The deals will run through next Friday (March 3), covering Utah’s next four games.

FEBRUARY 21: The Jazz have reached an agreement to sign guard Frank Jackson to a 10-day contract, agents Troy Payne and Mike Silverman tell Shams Charania of The Athletic (Twitter link).

The 31st overall pick in the 2017 draft, Jackson missed his entire rookie season due to a foot injury, then appeared in 213 regular season games over the next four seasons with the Pelicans and Pistons. In 2021/22, he averaged a career-high 10.6 points per game on .402/.308/.827 shooting in 53 contests (22.0 MPG) for Detroit.

Jackson, a former high school star in Utah, signed non-guaranteed contracts with the Suns and Jazz last fall, but didn’t make a regular season roster and has spent the season playing for the Salt Lake City Stars, Utah’s G League affiliate.

He averaged 19.5 PPG on .441/.410/.733 shooting in 12 Showcase Cup appearances (31.1 MPG) and has increased his production since the NBAGL regular season began, registering 22.2 PPG with a .487/.438/.837 shooting line in 17 games (33.8 MPG). Jackson’s strong play earned him a spot in the G League’s Next Up Game in Salt Lake City over the weekend.

The Jazz are also signing former lottery pick Kris Dunn to a 10-day deal, league sources tell Chris Haynes of TNT and Bleacher Report (Twitter link).

Dunn, 28, was drafted fifth overall in 2016 and has appeared in 245 regular season games since then for the Timberwolves, Bulls, Hawks, and Trail Blazers. Like Jackson though, he hasn’t played in the NBA so far this season, having spent the year in the G League.

Through 20 NBAGL regular season games (29.7 MPG) with the Capital City Go-Go, Washington’s affiliate, Dunn is averaging 16.2 PPG, 5.4 RPG, 5.3 APG and 2.6 SPG on .522/.412/.755 shooting, to go along with his usual strong defense.

The Jazz had just 12 players on their standard roster after buying out Leandro Bolmaro and Russell Westbrook, so they needed to start refilling those spots soon, as we noted this morning. Even after signing Jackson and Dunn, Utah will still have one opening left on its 15-man squad.

NBA G League Announces 24 Players For Next Up Game

The NBA G League announced today that G League Ignite guard Scoot Henderson and Timberwolves/Iowa Wolves forward Luka Garza have been named team captains for the NBAGL Next Up Game, which will take place in Salt Lake City during All-Star weekend.

While the exhibition match isn’t technically being called a G League All-Star Game, that’s essentially what it is. The 24-player pool was selected by a fan vote and by the league itself.

Henderson averaged 21.2 PPG, 6.0 APG, and 4.3 RPG in six Showcase Cup games (28.5 MPG) before missing time with an injury. The guard, widely projected to be the No. 2 pick in this year’s draft, has registered 17.7 PPG, 5.7 APG, and 4.5 RPG in 11 regular season games (29.8 MPG) since returning.

Garza, meanwhile, has been dominant at the G League level while playing for the Timberwolves on a two-way contract. He averaged 29.8 PPG, 9.2 RPG, and 3.2 APG on .628/.500/.794 shooting in nine Showcase Cup games (34.4 MPG) and has been boosted those averages in two regular season games (32.5 PPG, 12.0 RPG, 5.0 APG) for the Iowa Wolves.

Here’s the full list of players who will take part in the G League Next Up Game:

(* Players marked with an asterisk are on two-way contracts with NBA teams.)

As is the case with the NBA All-Star Game, the team captains – in this case, Henderson and Garza – will select their 12-man squads in a draft. The draft for the G League Next Up Game will take place on February 14.

Three Players Signed, Waived By Jazz

The Jazz have placed forward Tyler Cook and guards Frank Jackson and Isaiah Miller on waivers, the team announced in a press release. Their signings were announced earlier today, as Andy Larsen of The Salt Lake Tribune tweets.

Cook, a 25-year-old forward, appeared in 20 games with the Bulls last season on a two-way contract. He entered the league with the Cavaliers in 2019 and has also played for the Nuggets, Pistons and Nets.

Jackson spent the past two seasons with the Pistons and played two years with the Pelicans as well. The 24-year-old guard was the 31st pick in the 2017 draft.

Miller, a 24-year-old point guard, was waived by the Trail Blazers earlier this week. He spent last season with the Iowa Wolves, Minnesota’s G League affiliate.

All three players are likely to end up with Utah’s G League team, the Salt Lake City Stars, once they clear waivers.

Frank Jackson Waived By Suns

The Suns have waived guard Frank Jackson, Michael Scotto of HoopsHype tweets.

Jackson signed a non-guaranteed contract with Phoenix last month. He appeared in two preseason games.

Jackson, 24, has five years of NBA experience, though he missed his entire rookie season due to a foot injury. He was an early second-round pick in 2017 and spent his first three NBA seasons with the Pelicans. He played the last two seasons with the Pistons.

Jackson averaged 9.8 PPG in 40 games during his first season in Detroit and made 40.7% of his 3-point tries. He averaged a career-best 10.6 PPG in 53 games last season but his 3-point shooting cratered to 30.8%.

Jackson became a free agent in late June when Detroit declined its $3.15MM option on his contract. He’ll return to the open market later this week, assuming he clears waivers.

Frank Jackson Signs With Suns

SEPTEMBER 21: Jackson officially signed with the Suns on Tuesday, per RealGM’s NBA transaction log.

SEPTEMBER 20: The Suns are signing free agent guard Frank Jackson to a non-guaranteed contract, Shams Charania of The Athletic tweets.

Jackson, 24, has five years of NBA experience, though he missed his entire rookie season due to a foot injury. He was an early second-round pick in 2017 and spent his first three NBA seasons with the Pelicans. He played the last two seasons with the Pistons.

Jackson averaged 9.8 PPG in 40 games during his first season in Detroit and made 40.7% of his 3-point tries. He averaged a career-best 10.6 PPG in 53 games last season but his 3-point shooting cratered to 30.8%.

He became a free agent in late June when Detroit declined its $3.15MM option on Jackson’s contract. He’ll now get a chance to make the Suns’ roster.

The Suns only had 16 players under contract, including a pair of two-way players, so they can be expected to make more roster moves before training camp with camp rosters maxing out at 20.

Pistons To Decline Options On Garza, Edwards

The Pistons will not pick up the team options of center Luka Garza and guard Carsen Edwards, James Edwards III of The Athletic tweets.

The option on Garza, a second-r0und pick last season, is worth $1,563,518. The option figure for Edwards, who joined the Pistons late last season, is $1,815,677.

Edwards also confirms that Detroit will decline the $3,150,000 option on Frank Jackson‘s contract, which he previously reported was likely.

Technically, Detroit could make Garza and Edwards restricted free agents by extending qualifying offers, but that’s unlikely given the team could have retained either player at a low-cost figure. The Pistons are projected to have more cap space than any other team in free agency and these moves open up a little more room to make a splash.

Garza, who starred at Iowa, appeared in 32 games (five starts) last season, averaging 5.8 PPG and 3.1 RPG in 12.2 MPG. The addition of lottery pick Jalen Duren increased the possibility that Garza would be let go.

Edwards spent the bulk of last season in the G League before appearing in four games with Detroit in April.

Pistons Exercise Diallo’s Option, Likely To Decline Jackson’s

JUNE 28, 9:03am: The Pistons have officially exercised Diallo’s option in advance of today’s deadline, tweets Smith.

JUNE 27, 8:48am: The Pistons will likely pick up their team option on wing Hamidou Diallo for the 2022/23 season, sources tell James L. Edwards III of The Athletic (Twitter link). Exercising that option would lock in Diallo’s $5.2MM salary for ’22/23.

After spending the first two-and-a-half seasons of his career in Oklahoma City, Diallo has emerged as a regular part of the Pistons’ rotation since being traded to Detroit at the 2021 deadline. In 2021/22, he averaged 11.0 PPG, 4.8 RPG, and 1.2 SPG on .496/.247/.650 shooting in 58 games (21.9 MPG).

While turning down Diallo’s option would help the Pistons maximize their cap room, the team likes his athleticism and versatility, and his $5.2MM option salary isn’t exorbitant. Keith Smith of Spotrac (Twitter link) estimates Detroit would still have over $40MM in cap space even with Diallo on the books.

While Diallo’s option looks like a good bet to be exercised, the Pistons are unlikely to pick up Frank Jackson‘s team option, according to Edwards and Will Guillory of The Athletic. That option would pay Jackson a $3.15MM salary for 2022/23.

[RELATED: NBA Team Option Decisions For 2022/23]

A 2017 second-round pick who is still just 24 years old, Jackson appeared in 53 games for Detroit this past season, averaging a career-high 10.6 points in 22.0 minutes per contest. However, his efficiency numbers (.402 FG%, .308 3PT%) left something to be desired.

Jackson would become an unrestricted free agent if the Pistons decline his option.

The Pistons must officially finalize decisions on Diallo’s and Jackson’s options, as well as Luka Garza‘s team option, by Tuesday. The deadline for Carsen Edwards‘ team option is Wednesday.

Pistons Notes: Bagley, Livers, Cunningham, Blaha

Marvin Bagley III is headed to free agency but he seems intent on remaining with the Pistons, as he told James Edwards III of The Athletic.

Bagley has enjoyed his experience with Detroit since he was dealt by the Kings last month. He’s also been productive, averaging 14.1 PPG and 7.1 RPG in 27 MPG during his first 10 games with the Pistons.

“We’ve got some amazing talent here. Now, it’s about figuring out how to work together, gel together to do something bigger,” he said. “I’m definitely excited about it. I can’t wait to be around the guys even more, figure them out even more and make runs in the playoffs … even get some championships here. I’m excited about it.”

Bagley didn’t receive a rookie scale extension with Sacramento. His qualifying offer, which would make him a restricted free agent, will be $7.3MM since he won’t meet the starter criteria.

We have more on the Pistons:

  • Due to injuries and illness, rookie wing Isaiah Livers received extensive playing time against Miami on Tuesday. He responded with 16 points in 31 minutes but his bigger focus was defense, according to Keith Langlois of Livers, a second-round pick, spent the bulk of the season rehabbing from a foot injury. “Being out, definitely I was locked in, especially to my team,” Livers said. “I was seeing where we need that push and that shove. What I saw was defensive energy right away off the bench. That was my key right away to minutes off the bench.” Livers’ contract is guaranteed through next season with a team option in 2023/24.
  • Rookie of the Year candidate Cade Cunningham missed Tuesday’s game due to a non-COVID illness, according to Rod Beard of the Detroit News“He started feeling bad (Monday) night and came to shootaround looking like death, eating crackers. So, he’s in pretty bad shape,” coach Dwane Casey said prior to the game. Hamidou Diallo (finger) and Frank Jackson (back) also missed the game and Rodney McGruder aggravated a hamstring injury during it.
  • Longtime broadcaster George Blaha underwent a heart bypass procedure on Tuesday, the team’s PR department tweets. Blaha is expected to return as the play-by-play announcer next season.