Greg Whittington

And-Ones: Broekhoff, Grant, Whittington, COVID-19 Testing

Former Mavericks swingman Ryan Broekhoff has re-signed with South East Melbourne Phoenix in Australia’s NBL for two years, according to an NBL press release. Broekhoff played for the Phoenix this past season. He withdrew from playing in this summer’s Olympics with the Australian national team in order to focus on mental health issues.

We have more from the basketball world:

  • Former NBA guard Jerian Grant is expected to sign with Italy’s Olimpia Milano, Aris Barkas of reports. While playing for Promitheas Patras in the Greek league this year, Grant averaged team-highs 15.2 PPG and 6.1 APG during the regular season. He was waived by the Rockets during training camp in December.
  • Small forward Greg Whittington, who played four games with the Nuggets this season, has signed with Lokomotiv Kuban in Russia, according to Whittington, who underwent knee surgery in January, was cut loose by Denver in April after spending most of the season with the Nuggets on a two-way contract.
  • There have been no positive tests for the COVID-19 virus among players in the postseason since June 23, NBA Communications tweets. There were 94 players tested since that day. Chris Paul is the only player known to have tested positive since the playoffs began.

Nuggets Sign Shaquille Harrison, Cut Greg Whittington

APRIL 9: The moves are official, according to a press release from the team.

APRIL 8: The Nuggets intend to sign free agent guard Shaquille Harrison to a two-way contract, sources tell Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN (Twitter link). According to Wojnarowski, Denver will make room for Harrison by waiving current two-way player Greg Whittington.

A 27-year-old guard known for his strong perimeter defense, Harrison began the season with the Jazz, but saw limited minutes (3.3 MPG) in his 17 games with the team and was released before his salary became fully guaranteed for 2020/21.

Having also spent time in past seasons with Phoenix and Chicago, Harrison has career averages of 5.5 PPG and 2.4 RPG on .444/.289/.710 shooting in 156 total contests (15.1 MPG).

Although Harrison likely won’t play a major role in Denver, he’ll be eligible to play in the postseason, since the NBA adjusted the rule restricting two-way players from participating in the playoffs this season.

As for Whittington, he signed a two-way deal with the Nuggets in the fall but appeared in just four games with the team, going scoreless in 12 total minutes. As Mike Singer of The Denver Post tweets, the 28-year-old forward injured his knee in training camp and underwent a surgical procedure on it in January, derailing his first NBA season.

Even after signing Harrison, Denver won’t necessarily be done seeking backcourt depth, Singer adds (via Twitter). The club will have an open spot on its 15-man roster after waiving Gary Clark.

Nuggets’ Whittington Out At Least 4-6 Weeks After Knee Arthroscopy

Nuggets forward Greg Whittington underwent a successful knee arthroscopy on Tuesday morning, the team announced today in a press release. According to the Nuggets, Whittington will be re-evaluated in about four to six weeks.

Whittington, who went undrafted in 2015 out of Georgetown, has played in the G League and a handful of international leagues since then before getting a shot in Denver this past fall. He signed a two-way contract with the Nuggets in November, but has been unable to make his NBA debut so far due to his left knee issues.

The Nuggets have had relatively good luck so far this season when it comes to injuries and COVID-19, so even if Whittington had been healthy, there may not have been many opportunities for him yet. Fellow two-way player Markus Howard has logged just seven minutes across five games for Denver.

Players on two-way contracts are limited to being active for 50 of their team’s 72 games. Because Whittington will have missed more than 22 games by the time he gets healthy, the Nuggets will be able to activate him for any and every game down the stretch, if needed.

Nuggets Sign Greg Whittington To Two-Way Deal

2:26pm: Whittington’s two-way deal is now official, per a press release from the Nuggets.

2:02pm: The Nuggets are signing free agent forward Greg Whittington to a two-way contract, agent Jerry Dianis told Hoops Rumors. Denver finalized the agreement with Whittington on Tuesday, making him the second two-way player on the team’s roster, alongside Markus Howard.

[RELATED: 2020/21 NBA Two-Way Contract Tracker]

Whittington, a versatile 6’9″ forward, spent the past two seasons playing overseas in Turkey and Israel. He averaged 12.4 points and 4.9 rebounds per game in 14 EuroCup contests with Galatasaray last season, shooting 52.8% from behind the arc.

Prior to reaching an agreement with the Nuggets, Whittington turned down multiple offers from interested NBA and EuroLeague teams, his agent said.

“We chose this team because it was abundantly obvious that Greg has an immediate pathway to playing time for a championship-caliber team,” Dianis explained, “and that gives him the chance to significantly increase his future value.”

Denver lost forwards Jerami Grant (Pistons), Torrey Craig (Bucks), and Keita Bates-Diop (Spurs) this month, creating an appealing fit for Whittington on the team. The 27-year-old, who can play and defend multiple positions, is expected to provide frontcourt depth for a club that reached the Western Conference Finals this past season.

Two-way rules have been tweaked for 2020/21, allowing players to be activated for 50 of their teams’ 72 games, rather than being limited to 45 days spent in total. In addition, players will receive flat salaries of $449K, rather than receive a salary based on how many NBA days they played. Denver is one of two NBA teams without a G League affiliate — the other being Portland.

Whittington went undrafted back in 2015 after spending two seasons at Georgetown. He later joined the Heat for Summer League, attended training camp in the fall, and helped the team’s G League affiliate win a championship that season. In addition to Turkey, he’s also made stops in Australia, Sioux Falls, Japan and Israel.

We first reported on Saturday that the Nuggets were the favorites to sign Whittington.

Nuggets Sign Isaiah Hartenstein

NOVEMBER 30: The Nuggets have officially signed Hartenstein, the team announced in a press release.

NOVEMBER 22: The Nuggets intend to sign free agent center Isaiah Hartenstein to fill their final roster spot, a league source tells Mike Singer of The Denver Post. He’ll receive a two-year deal, Singer adds (via Twitter).

Hartenstein’s deal will include a second-year player option, according to Kelly Iko of The Athletic (Twitter link). It’ll be a minimum-salary contract, adds Singer (via Twitter).

Hartenstein, 22, spent the first two years of his NBA career in Houston before being waived in June. In 51 total games, he averaged 3.1 PPG and 2.7 RPG in 9.5 minutes per contest.

He’s expected to compete with Zeke Nnaji for Denver’s backup center job following the departure of Mason Plumlee, Singer notes. I’d expect Paul Millsap and JaMychal Green are also candidates to play some minutes at the five in smaller lineups when Nikola Jokic is off the floor.

Another player who could be in the mix for playing time at center is 2019 second-rounder Bol Bol, who will be promoted from his two-way contract to the standard roster, according to Singer. Bol will fill the roster spot previously occupied by Keita Bates-Diop, who will be waived before his salary for 2020/21 becomes guaranteed, per Singer.

Bol, once considered a probable 2019 lottery pick, dropped to No. 44 in last year’s draft due to health concerns. The 21-year-old was limited to seven NBA appearances and eight G League games as a rookie.

The Nuggets will also aim to sign forward Greg Whittington to a two-way contract, per Singer, though a league source tells JD Shaw of Hoops Rumors that Whittington has yet to agree to a deal. Undrafted Marquette free agent Markus Howard is on track to fill one on Denver’s two-way slots.

Nuggets Withdraw QO For Torrey Craig, Making Him UFA

The Nuggets have withdrawn their $2.5MM qualifying offer for swingman Torrey Craig, reports ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski (via Twitter). As a result of the move, he’ll become an unrestricted free agent.

Craig, who will turn 30 next month, averaged 5.4 PPG and 3.3 RPG in 58 games (27 starts) for Denver in 2019/20, providing the team with solid perimeter defense. However, he became a victim of a roster crunch in Denver.

According to Wojnarowski, the Nuggets valued Craig, but are simply running out of roster spots with which to comfortably bring him back on a guaranteed deal.

Even having lost Mason Plumlee and Jerami Grant, Denver added Zeke Nnaji and RJ Hampton in this week’s draft, is retaining Paul Millsap on a new deal, and is bringing in JaMychal Green and Facundo Campazzo in free agency. The club also reportedly plans on promoting two-way player Bol Bol to its standard roster.

The Nuggets are also emerging as the frontrunners to sign forward Greg Whittington to their roster, as our JD Shaw reports (via Twitter).

Greg Whittington Eyeing NBA Deal

Free agent Greg Whittington is eyeing an NBA deal after spending the past three years overseas, he told Hoops Rumors in a phone interview.

Whittington, a 6-foot-9 forward, is expected to join the league for the 2020/21 season following impressive stints in Turkey and Israel over the past two years. Multiple contenders have expressed interest in his services, according to his agent, Jerry Dianis.

“I’ve been waiting for this moment. We worked hard to get here,” Whittington said. “We’ve received interest from multiple teams, but we have one on our list that could be the one. I’m just trying to keep my focus and keep working hard. Whatever we do in free agency, I just want to bring that championship-level attitude to a team, help them win and keep working.”

For Whittington, 27, a return to the NBA would mark his first stint in America since helping the Sioux Falls Skyforce — G League affiliate of the Heat — win a championship during the 2015/16 season. This past year, he posted averages of 12.4 points and 4.9 rebounds per game in 14 EuroCup contests with Galatasaray, shooting an impressive 52.8% from 3-point range. He also received both forward of the year and All-EuroCup All-Imports Team honors.

The season before, he averaged a respectable 18.4 points per game in Israel, shooting 41.5% from deep while leading the country in rebounding (9.6 per contest). His consistent play has intrigued NBA teams as free agency nears.

“Greg’s performed in the brightest of lights and received top-of-the-line accolades this past year,” Dianis said. “Because of his versatility — a 6-foot-9, jumbo wing that could play on both sides of the ball — he’s ready to contribute to an NBA roster today.

“Greg’s a flat-out hooper. There’s not much on the basketball court he can’t do.”

Whittington spent the offseason working on his strength, three-point shooting and ball-handling, he said, and will enter unrestricted free agency without any buyout provisions. The veteran forward turned down offers from multiple overseas teams during the summer, formally declaring his intentions for the NBA.

“During my time overseas, I learned that the culture changes everywhere in life,” Whittington said. “And then, on the court, you have to be focused and bring it every night. You figure out quickly that some leagues are just as tough as being in the NBA — they don’t have a three-second violation, for example. Everybody’s (in the paint) helping. 

“I’ve matured by learning how to sharpen up my moves, be quicker and not take too much time. Getting to your spot before the defense could help, because they’re already there to help (overseas). So I learned that you have to be one or two steps ahead of the defense at every moment.”

Whittington is expected to take the next step in his basketball journey during free agency. He went undrafted back in 2015 after spending two seasons at Georgetown, later joining the Heat for Summer League and attending training camp with the team that fall. In addition to Turkey, he’s also held stints in Australia, Sioux Falls, Japan and Israel, carrying what he’s learned throughout every stop in his career.

Free agency is set to open on Friday at 5:00pm CT, with players allowed to sign their respective contracts starting Sunday at 11:01am. The 2020/21 regular season will tip-off on December 22.

And-Ones: TBT, Daniels, Whittington, Newman

A number of former NBA players are set to take part in 2020’s edition of The Basketball Tournament, an annual, winner-take-all tournament with a prize of $1MM.

As Carmine Carcieri of ESPN details, veteran guard Joe Johnson is playing in The Basketball Tournament after winning a championship and an MVP award in the BIG3 in 2019. Malachi Richardson, Tony Wroten, Johnny O’Bryant, and Markel Brown are among the others with NBA experience who will suit up for the event, per Carcieri.

More recently, a couple more notable names have joined the list of participants, with veteran guard Jarrett Jack joining Johnson’s Overseas Elite squad (Twitter link), while former lottery pick Hasheem Thabeet will be a member of the Playing For Jimmy V team.

With most professional sports still on hiatus, The Basketball Tournament should be under a larger spotlight in 2020. ESPN announced its broadcast schedule for the event today, starting with four games on July 4 and culminating in a July 14 championship.

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

  • CAA Sports is hiring Evan Daniels of 247Sports to become an agent in its college basketball coaching division, sources tell ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski (Twitter link). Daniels has long been one of the most well-connected and reliable sources for college basketball and NBA draft news.
  • Free agent forward Greg Whittington, who had a strong year in Turkey in 2019/20, isn’t eligible to join an NBA team for the summer restart, but continues to receive strong offers from EuroLeague teams, including Panathinaikos BC, agent Jerry Dianis tells JD Shaw of Hoops Rumors (Twitter links).
  • Former lottery pick Derrick Williams has received interest from international teams, including Khimki, but no deal is imminent, reports JD Shaw of Hoops Rumors (Twitter link). Williams, who last played in the NBA in 2017/18, spent the ’19/20 season with Fenerbahce.
  • Malik Newman, who spent a little time with the Cavaliers this season, has signed with Turkish team Bursaspor, as Emiliano Carchia of Sportando writes. Newman appeared in just one game for Cleveland, spending most of 2019/20 with the Canton Charge in the G League.

Greg Whittington Attracting NBA Interest

Free agent forward Greg Whittington has received interest from multiple high-level NBA teams throughout the year, his agent told Hoops Rumors.

Whittington impressed scouts during a shortened campaign with Turkish team Galatasaray in the EuroCup, playing against some of the toughest competition overseas. He posted averages of 12.4 points and 4.9 rebounds per game in 14 Turkish League contests, shooting 52.8% from 3-point range.

“Greg’s put in the work, and now he knows he’s graduated to being able to pick his next opportunity,” agent Jerry Dianis said. “He can now cherry-pick his next opportunity, and obviously he has some high-level NBA and international interest. I think Greg is going to be the most coveted free agent outside of the NBA because of his versatility and ability to shoot the ball.”

Whittington also averaged 18.4 points per game for Hapoel Gilboa Galil in Israel the season before, shooting 41.5% from deep in 30 contests while leading the country in rebounding (9.6 per contest). His versatility and unselfishness are two major reasons why he’s registered NBA interest, with the 27-year-old also being named forward of the year this season.

Whittington, a lengthy 6’9″ combo forward, went undrafted in 2015 after spending two seasons at Georgetown. He joined the Heat for summer league and earned a training camp deal with the team that fall, spending the rest of the season in the NBA G League. He’s since made stops in Australia, Sioux Falls, Japan and Israel.

Whittington’s consistent play has made him a strong candidate for an NBA contract, though all transactions across the league remain on hold amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Several teams around the association are actively preparing for a return to action, possibly as early as July. The season was suspended indefinitely on March 11.

Eastern Notes: Telfair, Pacers, Weaver

Despite possessing solid assets like Paul George and Myles Turner, the Pacers are a team in search of an identity entering the summer, Keith P. Smith of RealGM writes in his offseason primer for Indiana. Given the team’s stated desire to play at a faster speed on offense, the scribe questions the hiring of Nate McMillan as head coach since McMillan’s teams have consistently ranked near the bottom of the league in pace.

Smith also notes that Indiana would be better served to add a starting-caliber shooting guard this summer and shift Monta Ellis to a sixth man role, given his declining three-point shooting and diminishing trips to the foul line. Ellis, 30, still has three years and approximately $33.68MM remaining on his current deal.

Here’s more from the Eastern Conference:

  • The Nets have hired Will Weaver, who served as a special assistant to Sixers coach Brett Brown the past two seasons, to work in the same capacity under new head coach Kenny Atkinson, NetsDaily relays.
  • The Raptors held workouts today for Daniel Hamilton (UConn), Kyle Collinsworth (BYU), Perry Ellis (Kansas), James Webb III (Boise State), Guerschon Yabusele (France) and Chinanu Onuaku (Louisville), the team announced.
  • The Pistons are holding free agent workouts this week and some notable attendees include Phil Pressey, Jordan Crawford, Greg Whittington and Chris Douglas-Roberts, Rod Beard of The Detroit News tweets.
  • The Nets brought in veteran point guard Sebastian Telfair for a workout on Tuesday, Michael Scotto of Sheridan Hoops relays (via Twitter). Telfair last played in the NBA during the 2014/15 campaign, appearing in 16 games for the Thunder.