Hasheem Thabeet

And-Ones: Panic, Trade Candidates, Awards, Atkinson, Thabeet

Which teams that hoped to be contenders entering 2023/24 should be panicking after slow starts? John Hollinger of The Athletic explores that topic, with the Warriors topping his list (an eight on a scale of one-to-10).

The indefinite suspension of Draymond Green and the poor play of Andrew Wiggins and Klay Thompson “presents a dilemma” for Golden State, which just won the title two seasons ago. The Warriors will be faced with many difficult decisions in the coming months, Hollinger notes, with Thompson’s expiring contract looming large.

The Raptors (seven), Hawks (six), Grizzlies (five) and Suns (four) also hold places on Hollinger’s “Panic Meter” for various reasons.

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

  • Speaking of the Raptors, two of their starters — Pascal Siakam and OG Anunoby — are at the top of the trade candidate big board compiled by Sam Vecenie of The Athletic. Bulls guard Zach LaVine ranks third on the 25-player list, followed by his Chicago teammates DeMar DeRozan and Alex Caruso.
  • Tim Reynolds of The Associated Press takes a look at the early impact of the NBA’s new 65-game requirement for awards, writing that Heat guard Tyler Herro (ankle) and Trail Blazers guard Anfernee Simons (thumb surgery) are among the noteworthy players who won’t meet that requirement due to injuries, with many others having missed several games already. Herro has accepted that he won’t have a shot at a postseason award. “Next year then,” Herro said. “Or the year after that.”
  • Warriors assistant coach Kenny Atkinson has joined the staff of the French national team, per a team press release. Atkinson, formerly the head coach of the Nets, interviewed for several NBA head coaching jobs in recent years.
  • Hasheem Thabeet, the No. 2 overall pick of the 2009 draft, is signing a contract with the Kaohsiung Steelers, a Taiwanese team, agent Jerry Dianis tells Michael Scotto of HoopsHype (Twitter link). Thabeet appeared in 224 NBA games with the Grizzlies, Rockets, Blazers and Thunder, but has been out of the league since the ’13/14 season.

And-Ones: Martin, Thabeet, Dragic, Season Prognoses

Free agent point guard Jeremiah Martin has signed on with Polish club WKS Slask Wroclaw, the team announced in a press release.

After going undrafted out of Memphis in 2019, Martin played for the Heat’s G League affiliate, the Sioux Falls Skyforce. He later joined the Nets and Cavaliers on two-way contracts. Across 18 NBA games, the 26-year-old averaged 4.8 PPG, 1.2 APG and 0.7 SPG for Brooklyn and Cleveland.

The 6’2″ guard last suited up for the New Zealand Breakers during the 2021/22 season. In 10 contests with the Breakers, Martin averaged 12.3 PPG on 39.5% shooting, plus 3.6 APG, 2.7 RPG and 1.1 SPG.

There’s more from around the basketball world:

  • Veteran free agent center Hasheem Thabeet is expected to play with a team in the Chinese Basketball Association this season, Thabeet’s agent Jerry Dianis informed Michael Scotto of HoopsHype (Twitter link). Scotto writes that the big man is fielding interest from several Chinese clubs, including the Fujian Xunxing Sturgeons and the Jilin Northeast Tigers. The 7’3″ center, 35, was selected with the No. 2 pick out of Connecticut in 2009. In five NBA seasons, the big man averaged 2.2 PPG, 2.7 RPG and 0.8 BPG across 224 contests. Thabeet has since logged time with the Grand Rapids Drive and Fort Wayne Mad Ants of the NBA G League. He has also played overseas for teams in Japan and Taiwan.
  • Bulls point guard Goran Dragic spoke with Semih Tuna of Eurohoops about his return to EuroBasket competition this summer for the first time in five years. “Returning to the national team after five years is an incredible feeling,” Dragic said. “Of course, I’m older now, I’m 36 years old. I was fresher back then, but I still enjoy playing basketball. That’s why I’m happy to be back.”
  • A panel of ESPN writers is making some predictions for the league ahead of the start of the 2022/23 NBA season. The group votes on landing spots for Kevin Durant and Donovan Mitchell this season, which teams are most likely to enjoy bounce-back seasons, which teams are most likely to fall into total chaos, and more.

Hasheem Thabeet Signing In China

Former NBA center Hasheem Thabeet is signing a deal in the Chinese Basketball Association with the Fujian Sturgeons, agent Jerry Dianis told Hoops Rumors.

Thabeet most recently played in Taiwan, averaging 18.3 points, 14.3 rebounds and 3.3 blocks per game while receiving Defensive Player of the Year honors. This will be Thabeet’s first time playing in China during his professional career.

“Hasheem is the best rim protector on the planet,” Dianis said. “China has 1.4 billion people and he’s excited to play on this stage. His ultimate goal is to return to the NBA, something that could happen as soon as this year.”

Thabeet, the No. 2 overall pick of the 2009 NBA Draft, has made past NBA stops with Memphis, Houston, Portland, and Oklahoma City. Known as a fierce shot-blocker at 7’3″, he also spent three collegiate seasons at UConn and holds international experience in Japan.

Prior to signing in Taiwan, Thabeet worked out for several teams, including the Knicks, Nuggets, Bucks, Warriors, and Sixers. He carries 224 games of NBA experience and joins a team that has signed veterans such as Christian Wood and Amar’e Stoudemire in past years.

And-Ones: Thabeet, Wade, A. Antetokounmpo, Trial

Former No. 2 pick Hasheem Thabeet is attempting an NBA comeback after spending seven years away from the league, Ben Stinar writes for Sports Illustrated.

Thabeet, a 7-foot-3 center, averaged 18.3 points, 14.3 rebounds and 3.3 blocks per game during his latest stint in Taiwan, receiving MVP honors with the Hsinchu Lioneers. He worked out for a handful of NBA teams in 2019 and hopes to eventually complete his comeback at 34 years old.

For his career, Thabeet has played 224 games with four different NBA teams. His last stint in the states came with the Fort Wayne Mad Ants — G League affiliate of the Pacers — during the 2019/20 season.

Here are some other odds and ends from around the basketball world:

  • Dwyane Wade‘s role with TNT isn’t expected to change despite purchasing an ownership stake in the Jazz, according to Marc Stein of the New York Times (Twitter link). Some league observers expected Wade to relinquish his analyst duties on TNT due to the agreement. League rules require that he can’t partake in Utah’s front-office decisions (including recruiting free agents) so long as he remains on TV, Stein adds.
  • Alex Antetokounmpo made his debut in the Spanish Liga ACB this past week, as relayed by Sportando. The 19-year-old is the youngest of the Antetokounmpo brothers — which includes Giannis (Bucks), Thanasis (Bucks), Kostas (Lakers) and Francis.
  • The NBA has warned its teams to be ready for the results from Derek Chauvin’s trial, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski. Chauvin faces charges of second-degree murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter in the death of George Floyd from last May. The league office is preparing for games to be postponed if need be, Wojnarowski reports.

Hasheem Thabeet Signs In Taiwan

Former No. 2 overall pick Hasheem Thabeet has signed a contract in Taiwan with the Hsinchu Lioneers, agent Jerry Dianis told Hoops Rumors.

Thabeet, who has made past NBA stops with Memphis, Houston, Portland and Oklahoma City, will head to Taiwan for the first time in his professional career. He garnered interest from multiple teams in Europe and Asia in recent months, ultimately choosing the Lioneers for a larger playing role, Dianis said.

Thabeet, a 7’3″ shot-blocker who spent three seasons at UConn, believes he’s in the best physical and mental shape of his career. The 33-year-old veteran worked out for teams such as the Knicks, Nuggets, Bucks and Warriors as recently as last year.

“It’s an opportunity for him to play and do well on the international stage,” Dianis said. “Hasheem expects to dominate on both ends of the floor and is excited to help the team win. He’s been busting his ass and personnel across the NBA say he’s in great shape. He took this opportunity because he wants to play and show just how much he’s improved. 

“Hasheem is an NBA player. He’s an elite shot-blocker because of his unique size, athleticism and insticts. After a dominant performance in Taiwan, he will have a plethora of new opportunities.”

Prior to signing in Taiwan, Thabeet signed a contract in the NBA G League last fall and was drafted in the first round by the Fort Wayne Mad Ants, the Pacers’ G League affiliate. The team concentrated on playing a small-ball brand of basketball in the weeks that followed, ultimately leading to Thabeet’s camp asking for a release.

In addition to being an effective rim-protector, Thabeet has improved offensively and is known for his leadership — Nets superstar Kevin Durant has previously stated that Thabeet was one of the best teammates he has ever had. The big man last appeared in an NBA game during the 2013/14 season when both players were with Oklahoma City.

Joining the Lioneers gives Thabeet a chance to prove his worth, with potential opportunities in China and the NBA still on the table down the road. The veteran center carries several years of experience and has played overseas before, holding a past stint in Japan during the 2017/18 season.

Thabeet Staying Ready For Next Opportunity Despite Cancellation In TBT

Former No. 2 overall pick Hasheem Thabeet has re-entered unrestricted free agency after a teammate in The Basketball Tournament tested positive for COVID-19 at the start of the month.

Thabeet, 33, was set to compete with the “Playing for Jimmy V” team during the annual tournament, but event rules mandate that any team who receives a positive test be disqualified from competing in the bracket any further. Thabeet tested negative for the coronavirus, a person with knowledge of the situation said.

Thabeet, a lengthy 7’3″ center, remains an intriguing option for teams in need of rim protection. He has received NBA and overseas interest over the past year, working out for teams such as the Knicks, Bucks, Nuggets and Warriors in 2019. The overall consensus remains the same regardless of the atmosphere he plays in: Thabeet appears to be in prime condition.

“Hasheem is in unbelievable shape,” Alex Neumann, the general manager of Playing for Jimmy V, told Hoops Rumors. “He looks better than he ever has. He still has his athleticism and got up and down the floor really well. 

“His basketball IQ is off the charts. Just helping the young guys on the team, helping in film sessions and putting in offensive sets — he absolutely looks like he belongs on the NBA court.”

Thabeet was drafted second overall in 2009 after spending three years at UConn, and subsequently made NBA stops with Memphis, Houston, Portland, Oklahoma City and the L.A. Lakers. He was selected in the first round of the 2019 NBA G League Draft to Fort Wayne after spending some time overseas.

Along with his shot-blocking abilities, Thabeet is known for being a respected locker room veteran — Nets superstar Kevin Durant previously stated that Thabeet was one of the best teammates he has ever had. Teams in need of rim protection entering the NBA’s campus in Orlando or training camp later this fall could turn to Thabeet, who is staying active and is eagerly anticipating his next opportunity.

“What I can bring to a team right now is a defensive aspect in the paint,” Thabeet told Hoops Rumors. “You have to know your role. I believe I can bring in defensive plays at a high level. 

“I’m ready to control the paint and get back to playing at a high level of basketball. I really believe I can still play at a high level once I get that one chance, then we’ll go from there.”

The 2019/20 NBA season is scheduled to resume on July 30, with free agency set to start in mid-October and training camps for next season tentatively expected to commence by the start of December. Teams in Orlando are eligible to sign substitute players to their rosters in the event that a player contracts COVID-19 or voluntarily opts out.

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.

Hasheem Thabeet Garnering Interest From Teams In Asia, Spain

Former No. 2 pick Hasheem Thabeet is evaluating interest from multiple teams in Asia and Spain, with the former UConn center hoping to resurrect his NBA career by proving his worth, agent Jerry Dianis told Hoops Rumors.

In addition to clubs overseas, several teams in the G League have maintained an interest in Thabeet, Dianis said.

Thabeet signed an NBA G League contract and started the season with the Fort Wayne Mad Ants, the Pacers’ G League affiliate. He parted ways with the team last month after averaging four points, 4.3 rebounds and 1.7 blocks per game in fairly limited time (16.4 minutes per contest), appearing in nine total games.

Thabeet, 32, remains a valuable defensive asset for teams in need of rim protection. He’s established himself as an elite shot-blocker during his professional career, using his 7’3″, 260-pound athletic frame to contest shots and play strong defense.

Thabeet worked out for multiple NBA teams before being drafted by Fort Wayne in the fall, including Golden State, Denver and New York. He also attended two workouts with Milwaukee.

Thabeet, who spent three seasons at UConn from 2006-09, has shown impressive durability and worked hard on improving his body in recent years. He has made past stops with the Grizzlies, Rockets, Blazers, Thunder, Pistons and Lakers, which includes an array of G League stints.

2019 NBA G League Draft Recap

Former Miami Hurricanes star Anthony Lawrence II was selected by Northern Arizona with the first pick in today’s G League draft. A combo forward, Lawrence spent four years in college, averaging 12.5 points and 6.6 rebounds last season. He was signed and waived by the Jazz last Saturday.

Lawrence played for the Cavaliers during Summer League, then signed with Hapoel Be’er Sheva in Israel. However, he parted ways with the team earlier this month after one preseason game.

Some other notable selections include:

Mourning, who spent four years at Georgetown, is the son of Hall of Fame center Alonzo Mourning. He played for the Heat during Summer League. Duval, once a highly touted point guard at Duke, was a two-way player for the Bucks for most of last season and appeared in three NBA games.

Mac, formerly known as Sheldon McClellan, got into 30 games for the Wizards during the 2016/17 season. Thabeet, the second player chosen in the 2009 NBA Draft, worked out extensively with the Knicks this summer and is hoping to return to the NBA at age 32.

Other prominent draftees include former Celtics and Lakers guard Vander Blue, the 13th pick in the second round by Santa Cruz, and Trey Phills, son of former NBA player Bobby Phills, who went to Windy City with the 18th pick in the fourth round.

The full results of this year’s draft can be found here.

And-Ones: Duval, G League Draft, NBA Rosters, Williamson

Trevon Duval has signed a G League contract and is eligible for this Saturday’s draft, Adam Johnson of 2 Ways & 10 Days tweets. Duval was a two-way player for the Rockets last season and became a free agent when the team didn’t give him a qualifying offer this summer. He was claimed by Houston in March after the Bucks waived him. The former Duke guard made three cameo appearances with Milwaukee.

We have more from around the basketball world:

  • Journeyman center Hasheem Thabeet, former Lakers guard Vander Blue, and forward Trey Mourning, son of Alonzo Mourning, are some of the more interesting names on the list of players eligible for the G League draft, according to a league press release. The Northern Arizona Suns have the first pick.
  • There are 108 international players from 38 countries and territories on current NBA rosters, according to a league press release. The most-represented countries among the 108 international players on opening-night rosters are Canada (16 players), Australia (nine players), France (eight players), Croatia (seven players) and Serbia (six players). The Mavericks lead the league with seven international players.
  • Zion Williamson‘s knee injury created disappointment for the NBA’s TV partners, as Joe Vardon of The Athletic explains. TNT and ESPN wanted nationally-televised games featuring the Pelicans during the opening week of the season to showcase Williamson. They were stuck showing the Pelicans without the top pick in the draft on the court because it was too late to make a change. Vardon goes in-depth on how the national TV schedule is designed and notes that the Lakers play 21 of their 30 nationally -televised games after New Year’s Day because the networks wanted to feature LeBron James and Anthony Davis during the team’s playoff push.
  • Amida Brimah, the former UConn center who was in training camp with the Pacers, has suffered a torn right ACL, Scott Agness of The Athletic tweets. He was slated to join Indiana’s G League team, the Fort Wayne Mad Ants.  Brimah will undergo surgery next week, Agness adds.