Gary Harris

Magic Guarantee 2023/24 Salaries For Markelle Fultz, Gary Harris

The Magic have decided to retain point guard Markelle Fultz and veteran wing Gary Harris through their respective salary guarantee dates, reports Jason Beede of The Orlando Sentinel (subscription required).

Fultz’s $17MM salary for 2023/24 had only been partially guaranteed for $2MM, while Harris’ $13MM cap hit was non-guaranteed. The Magic had to waive the two players today to avoid fully guaranteeing their ’23/24 salaries, but have apparently opted not to do so.

The No. 1 overall pick in the 2017 draft, Fultz started all 60 games he played for the Magic in 2022/23 after being limited to just 26 total appearances across the two prior seasons due to an ACL tear. Fultz enjoyed his best NBA season this past year, establishing new career highs in points (14.0), assists (5.7), and rebounds (3.9) per game while also shooting a career-best 51.4% from the field, including 31.0% on threes.

Harris, meanwhile, appeared in 48 games for Orlando last season, starting 42 of them and averaging 24.7 minutes per night. The 28-year-old made a career-high 43.1% of his three-point attempts, providing some much-needed floor spacing for a Magic team that ranked 25th in the NBA in three-pointers.

With Fultz and Harris on the books for next season, Orlando’s cap flexibility will be reduced. However, according to Jake Fischer of Yahoo Sports, the Magic isn’t planning to be a major player on the free agent market anyway.

It sounds like the team will focus on lower-cost free agents rather than trying to make a significant splash. Fischer hears from sources that veteran forward Joe Ingles is one candidate to sign with the Magic on a contract worth more than the minimum.

And-Ones: Coach Contracts, Options, Star Trades, Glickman

Monty Williams‘ record-setting six-year, $78.5MM contract with the Pistons will have a major impact on some of the league’s top coaches, Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN said on NBA Countdown (YouTube link).

It’s going to significantly impact the head coaching landscape for high-level coaches, including (the Heat‘s) Erik Spoelstra and (the Warriors‘) Steve Kerr,” said Wojnarowski (hat tip to RealGM). “Both of those coaches have one year left, next season, on their deals. Both, I’m told, in the $8 million annual range right now. Both coaches, when you talk to owners and executives around the league, if they were on the open market might be able to get what (Denver Broncos coach) Sean Payton got: in the neighborhood of $20 million per year.

It’s hard to imagine Erik Spoelstra leaving a Miami organization where he started 28 years ago as a video intern, where he’s spent 15 years as a head coach with two championships.

Steve Kerr is going to be a different situation. His president/GM Bob Myers announced last week that he’s leaving. This is an aging roster. The worldview for Steve Kerr may look different. Watch his negotiations this summer on an extension.

One other coach who is going to benefit from Monty Williams changing the pay structure of NBA head coach is Clippers coach Tyronn Lue.”

Here’s more from around the basketball world:

  • Which players are likely to exercise their player options? Which teams will exercise their options on players’ contracts? Which players on partially guaranteed and non-guaranteed contracts will be waived before free agency? John Hollinger of The Athletic predicts all of those decisions. The former Grizzlies executive believes Jazz guard Talen Horton-Tucker ($11MM) will decline his option and test free agency, writing that his age (22) could help him get a new contract for the full mid-level exception or better. According to Hollinger, the Lakers will likely decline their $16.6MM team option on guard Malik Beasley, while the Magic will retain Gary Harris‘ $13MM deal, which is currently non-guaranteed (it will become guaranteed if he’s still on the roster July 1).
  • Mike Vorkunov, Fred Katz and James L. Edwards III of The Athletic draft the NBA teams they think have the top assets to offer in hypothetical trades for star players this offseason, with two caveats: The team’s best player cannot be included for the star, and the outgoing pieces will be both players and draft picks. The Thunder are selected No. 1 by Vorkunov, followed by the Magic at No. 2 (Katz), and surprisingly the Trail Blazers at No. 3 (Edwards).
  • Marshall Glickman, the acting CEO of the EuroLeague, announced he will step down from his post when his contract expires at the end of July, tweets Donatas Urbonas of As BasketNews relays, a previous report indicated that Glickman’s work relationship with EuroLeague president Dejan Bodiroga was strained, which made have contributed to the decision. Glickman has been acting CEO since last September.

Nuggets Notes: Layoff, Jokic, Porter, Roster Construction

The Nuggets are eager to get back to action after a long layoff, writes Parker Gabriel of The Denver Post. Denver’s sweep of the Lakers wrapped up on May 22, so by the time Game 1 of the Finals tips off Thursday night, the team will have gone 10 days without playing. The break provided some welcome rest for the players, but it might have lasted too long.

“I told my wife when Boston won Game 6, it almost felt like – we’d been sitting so long, it almost felt like we weren’t in the playoffs anymore because the only thing we were doing was watching them,” Jeff Green said. “But I watched two good teams battle and when they won, it was like, ‘Now it’s time to refocus.’ The time off, I think it helped in many ways. It allowed us to regroup, touch up on some things, better ourselves. I enjoyed that series. They showed me some things on both ends. I’m looking forward to this matchup.”

Kentavious Caldwell-Pope said the Nuggets were focusing their preparation on Miami after the Heat took a 3-0 lead in the Eastern Conference Finals. More Celtics work was mixed in as Boston rallied to tie the series.

“We’ve been sitting for a long time, we’re going to be a little jittery and anxious to play,” Caldwell-Pope said. “Just try to keep them calm. The first couple possessions are going to be a lot, even for myself. I’ll be feeling anxious, even right now.”

There’s more from Denver:

  • Coach Michael Malone says Nikola Jokic has many of the “selfless superstar” qualities that Tim Duncan exhibited with the Spurs (video link). Even though Jokic has become one of the league’s best players, Malone said he’s never lost focus on helping his teammates and doing whatever is necessary to win.
  • Michael Porter Jr. overcame three back surgeries to reach the NBA Finals, notes Mirin Fader of The Ringer. With his athleticism reduced by the repeated injuries, Porter focused on adding things to his game and has become an improved rebounder, defender and three-point shooter. “There was a lot of sad feelings and there was a lot of really, honestly, depression and anxiety, not knowing if you’re able to fulfill what you thought for your life,” Porter said about last year’s recovery process.
  • Jake Fischer of Yahoo Sports takes a look at how the Nuggets’ roster was built, including the 2021 Aaron Gordon trade that meant saying goodbye to Gary Harris, a long-time cornerstone of the franchise.

Trade Rumors: Poeltl, Wizards, G. Harris, Noel, Warriors, Knicks, More

The Wizards are among the teams to register trade interest in Spurs center Jakob Poeltl, Marc Stein reports at Substack. As Stein writes, Boston and Toronto have been the clubs most frequently cited as suitors for the big man in recent weeks — Washington is a new addition to the Poeltl sweepstakes. Still, Stein hears that as of Wednesday morning, there didn’t appear to be a logical trade match between the Wizards and Spurs.

Here are a few more trade rumors from around the NBA:

  • Although Gary Harris has been mentioned as a trade candidate in Orlando, Stein hears that the Magic may prefer to hang onto the veteran swingman through Thursday’s deadline, since the team values his locker room presence on a young roster.
  • Nerlens Noel is the Pistons veteran most likely to be on the move this week, according to Stein, who says the Heat and Sixers continue to convey interest in the veteran center.
  • Multiple rival executives consider the Warriors good bets to make a move by Thursday’s deadline, according to Steve Bulpett of “To me, there’s nobody more incentivized toward making a deal than the Warriors,” one league exec told Bulpett, pointing to Golden State’s veteran stars and pricey payroll. “Now. Right now. This is one of those years. You can’t waste this year. You’ve got to roll with this year.”
  • As of late Tuesday night, there was pessimism that the Knicks will make a deal with the Jazz for Jarred Vanderbilt and/or Malik Beasley, says Ian Begley of Although the two teams have discussed a potential trade, as HoopsHype reported over the weekend, some people in New York’s front office aren’t sold on Vanderbilt’s and Beasley’s fit with the current roster, Begley explains.
  • Although there has been some speculation that the Nuggets may be reluctant to deal with the Timberwolves after how Tim Connelly‘s move from Denver to Minnesota played out, a Nuggets team source insisted to Sam Amick of The Athletic that Connelly’s history wouldn’t be a roadblock if the two teams wanted to make a deal involving Bones Hyland or another player.

Stein’s Latest: Drummond, Agbaji, Magic, Ross, Wizards

Bulls center Andre Drummond is a good candidate to be on the move prior to the February 9 trade deadline, according to Marc Stein, who notes in his latest Substack story that the veteran big man hasn’t been a regular part of Chicago’s rotation as of late.

Drummond wasn’t playing big minutes early in the season either, but has seen his playing time decline further since then, having received a handful of DNP-CDs in January. He has played more than nine minutes in only two games since the calendar flipped to 2023. For the season, the 29-year-old averaging 6.1 PPG and 6.6 RPG in 13.0 minutes per game in 36 appearances — all of those numbers are career lows.

Drummond isn’t on a minimum-salary contract, but his modest $3.2MM cap hit makes him an attainable trade chip for just about any NBA team. He does have a $3.36MM player option for 2023/24, so a club acquiring him would have to be comfortable with the possibility that he’ll exercise that option.

Here’s more for Stein:

  • After having previously reported that the Jazz are willing to listen to inquires about anyone on their roster except for Lauri Markkanen and Walker Kessler, Stein adds a third name to that list, citing a source who says rookie wing Ochai Agbaji also appears to be off-limits.
  • The Magic are “welcoming” inquiries on Terrence Ross, Gary Harris, Mohamed Bamba, and R.J. Hampton, league sources tell Stein. Rival teams are keeping an eye on Ross as a possible buyout candidate if he’s not moved by February 9, Stein adds. Orlando hasn’t made a habit in recent years of buying out veterans in contract years, but it’s possible that Ross – who suggested last spring that he’d welcome a trade – could push for a change of scenery.
  • Having previously reported that the Suns turned down a trade involving Jae Crowder and Rui Hachimura, Stein corrects the record, writing that the obstacle in those discussions was actually the Wizards’ desire to flip Crowder to the Bucks — the three teams discussed a deal, but couldn’t work out an agreement that appealed to Washington more than the Lakers’ offer.

Injury Notes: Doncic, Green, Morant, Gobert, Edwards, Harris

Luka Doncic didn’t play on Sunday, with the official explanation being left ankle soreness, according to the team’s PR department (Twitter link). According to the Dallas Morning News’ Brad Townsend, the Mavericks superstar was simply being rested in the second game of a back-to-back.

Doncic played a career-high 53 minutes in Thursday’s double-overtime victory of the Lakers, then scored a season-low 15 points in 35 minutes against Portland on Saturday night.

The Mavs’ Josh Green, out since Dec. 9 due to a sprained right elbow, could return to action on Wednesday, Townsend tweets.

We have more injury-related news:

  • Grizzlies star Ja Morant delivered an electrifying hammer dunk against the Pacers on Saturday but there’s no guarantee he’ll play on Monday. Morant is listed as questionable to play against Phoenix due to left hip soreness, the team’s PR department tweets.
  • Timberwolves center Rudy Gobert is listed as questionable to play against his former team, the Jazz, on Monday due to right groin soreness, Jon Krawczynski of The Athletic tweets. Anthony Edwards is also questionable due to left hip soreness.
  • Magic guard Gary Harris started on Sunday despite what the team’s PR department labeled a mallet finger on his shooting hand, Khobi Price of the Orlando Sentinel tweets. It’s an injury to the end of a finger that causes it to bend inward toward the palm. A torn or stretched tendon prevents the finger from straightening out.

Eastern Notes: Heat, Crowder, Embiid, Magic, Bulls

The Heat have frequently been cited as a potential trade suitor for Suns forward Jae Crowder, but a source who has spoken to Miami’s front office believes the Heat may only be interested in Crowder if he’s bought out, reports Barry Jackson of The Miami Herald.

Jackson adds that the Heat would likely still have interest in trading for Crowder if the Suns are willing to accept a “bad contract,” which is presumably a reference to Duncan Robinson‘s deal — it still has three years and $57MM+ left after this season. However, the Suns won’t want to take on Robinson and are a good bet to eventually find a deal they like for Crowder without having to resort to a buyout. In other words, if Jackson’s source is right, it sounds like Miami is a long shot to land the veteran forward.

Here’s more from around the Eastern Conference:

  • The Sixers will be without star center Joel Embiid on Wednesday vs. Indiana due to left foot soreness, tweets Keith Pompey of The Philadelphia Inquirer. Embiid landed on Jaxson Hayes‘ foot during the fourth quarter of Monday’s game vs. New Orleans, according to Tim Bontemps of ESPN (Twitter link), who says the big man will be considered day-to-day moving forward.
  • Magic center Wendell Carter and swingman Gary Harris have played limited roles since returning from injuries on December 23 — neither player has seen more than 25 minutes of action in any of their three games back. However, Carter and Harris will have their minutes restrictions lifted on Wednesday, per head coach Jamahl Mosley. Orlando still has four players serving suspensions and will have just nine players available vs. Oklahoma City, tweets Khobi Price of The Orlando Sentinel.
  • Rob Schaefer of NBC Sports Chicago evaluates 11 hypothetical – and perhaps far-fetched – deadline trades for the Bulls submitted by fans.

NBA Suspends Two Pistons Players, Nine Magic Players For Roles In Fracas

The NBA has suspended two Pistons players and nine Magic players for their roles in an altercation during the second quarter of Wednesday’s game, the league has announced (Twitter link).

Pistons guard Killian Hayes was given the harshest punishment, a three-game suspension without pay. Magic center Moritz Wagner has been suspended for two games, while Detroit guard Hamidou Diallo was also dinged for a one-game suspension. Both Hayes and Diallo will be held out of the team’s road game against the Bulls Friday.

Hayes, Wagner and Diallo were all ejected from the game Wednesday night, which Detroit won 121-101, for their roles in the on-court confrontation that began when Wagner hip-checked Hayes out of bounds into the Pistons’ bench while the two were scrambling for a loose ball. Diallo subsequently shoved Wagner in the back, but Hayes then escalated the conflict when he punched Wagner in the back of the head. Wagner appeared to lose consciousness after the hit. Several Magic players left the bench to support Wagner and all have been penalized for doing so.

The NBA is additionally suspending eight additional Orlando players after they left the bench to support Wagner during the scuffle: guards Cole Anthony, R.J. Hampton, Gary Harris and Kevon Harris, swingmen Franz Wagner and Admiral Schofield, and big men Wendell Carter Jr. and Mo Bamba. All eight players will receive one-game bans.

The NBA’s press release indicates that the absences of the Magic players will be staggered to ensure the team has enough available bodies for its ensuing two contests. Anthony, Gary Harris, Hampton, Bamba, and Carter will miss Orlando’s next game on Friday against the Wizards. Wagner will also begin his two-game suspension on Friday. The others will miss the club’s January 4 matchup with the Thunder.

Wendell Carter, Gary Harris Set To Return For Magic

The Magic, riding a hot streak, got some more good news on December 23, according to Khobi Price of The Orlando Sentinel, who reports that center Wendell Carter Jr. and swingman Gary Harris will both be available on Friday vs. San Antonio following lengthy injury absences.

Carter has missed Orlando’s last 17 games due to a strained right plantar fascia, having last played on November 18. Harris, meanwhile, has been out since November 30. His 11-game absence was the result of a strained right hamstring.

Carter had averaged a career-high 16.6 points per game to go along with 9.1 RPG and 3.3 APG in his first 15 appearances (all starts) this season, while Harris put up 10.3 PPG on .479/.435/1.000 shooting in six games (three starts). Carter was averaging nearly 33 minutes per game, while Harris was logging almost 26 minutes per night, so both players figure to reclaim key roles now that they’re healthy, though they’ll be on minutes restrictions for the time being.

Still, the Magic will want to be careful not to meddle too much with what has been working for them lately. After losing 20 of their first 25 games, the Magic have won seven of eight and are suddenly just two games out of the play-in picture in the Eastern Conference standings.

Friday’s game should be the first time this season that Orlando doesn’t have at least four players sidelined due to injuries, according to Price.

Jonathan Isaac (left knee), Chuma Okeke (left knee), and Jalen Suggs (right ankle) have been ruled out for the game, though Isaac still appears to be making progress toward his long-awaited return. He went through shootaround today and head coach Jamahl Mosley said Isaac is cleared to practice with the Magic when they do hold practices (Twitter link via Price).

Magic Rumors: Bamba, Ross, Harris, Hampton, Anthony

The Magic lost by a single point in Atlanta on Monday night, but prior to that game, Orlando had reeled off six straight wins, with many of them coming against tough opponents. The Magic won home games against the Clippers, Hawks, and Raptors (twice), then capped off the streak with a pair of victories in Boston.

Orlando is still just 11-21 on the season, but the team seems to be taking the sort of positive step forward that management wanted to see in 2022/23, writes Jake Fischer of Yahoo Sports.

“They have two of the premier positions in the league — play-making forwards — on rookie scale contracts, intriguing young talent around them on solid contracts, no bad money moving forward, and some veterans who could get them back even more draft capital should they choose to trade them,” an Eastern Conference team strategist told Fischer.

While the Magic haven’t been big spenders in free agency during their rebuilding process, league figures familiar with the club’s thinking tell Fischer that ownership will be prepared to open its check book when the time comes to invest in complementary pieces around those two young forwards, Franz Wagner and Paolo Banchero.

Here’s more on the Magic:

  • Among potential Orlando trade chips this season, Mohamed Bamba may have the most value, according to Fischer, who says league sources believe the Magic will likely be seeking a first-round pick for Bamba and would settle for a protected or late first-rounder. Fischer notes that the Magic pursued Isaiah Hartenstein in free agency this past summer, which is perhaps an indication that Bamba was a fallback option and isn’t in the team’s long-term plans.
  • Although it’s unclear which teams might have interest in Bamba specifically, front office personnel expect teams like the Clippers, Lakers, Raptors, Kings, and Nets to explore the trade market for big men, Fischer writes.
  • Veteran wings Terrence Ross and R.J. Hampton, both in contract years, are also considered potential trade candidates, as is Gary Harris, who has a non-guaranteed salary for 2023/24. However, their appeal will probably be limited, given their modest production relative to their respective cap hits. Ross has previously drawn interest from the Lakers and Knicks, and the Magic have sought a first-round pick for him in the past, but it’s hard to envision them getting more than a second-rounder if they move him, says Fischer.
  • League personnel think there may be a “sizable gap” between Cole Anthony‘s asking price and what the Magic are willing to offer when the third-year guard becomes eligible for a rookie scale extension next offseason, per Fischer.