Justise Winslow

10-Day Contracts Expire For Knicks, Raptors

Taj Gibson‘s second 10-day contract with the Knicks expired overnight, making him an unrestricted free agent once again. The 10-day deals signed by Raptors forwards Justise Winslow and Mouhamadou Gueye on February 10 also expired overnight.

Both the Knicks and Raptors are now below the NBA-mandated minimum of 14 players on standard contracts and will have to re-add players to their roster in the near future.

[RELATED: 2023/24 NBA Roster Counts]

Teams are permitted to dip below 14 players for up to two weeks at a time, but because Gibson was only the Knicks’ 13th man and New York has actually been carrying fewer than 14 players since February 8, the club will have to make two roster additions by this Thursday (Feb. 22).

One of those additions could be Gibson, but since he has already signed two 10-day contracts with the Knicks, the team would have to give him a rest-of-season deal to bring him back.

The Raptors, meanwhile, are now at 13 players and will have until March 5 to fill at least one of the two openings on their 15-man roster. Given that Toronto has a good amount of flexibility below the luxury tax line and will likely want take a longer look at some young players, I wouldn’t expect the team to take the full two weeks to fill one or both of those open roster spots. For what it’s worth, both Winslow and Gueye are eligible to sign one more 10-day deal with the team.

Three other 10-day contracts around the NBA remain active — Zhaire Smith‘s deal with the Cavaliers runs through this Thursday, as does Tosan Evbuomwan‘s agreement with the Pistons. Jordan Goodwin‘s contract with the Grizzlies will cover one extra day, running through Friday.

All three of those contracts will actually remain active for more than 10 days, since 10-day contracts must cover at least three games. Smith, Evbuomwan, and Goodwin each only got two games before the All-Star break, so their “10-day” deals will actually cover 11 or 12 days. That wasn’t the case for Gibson, Winslow, or Gueye, as the Knicks and Raptors each played three contests between Feb. 10 and the start of the All-Star break.

Raptors Sign Justise Winslow To 10-Day Deal

4:30pm: The signing is official, the Raptors announced in a press release.

12:19pm: The Raptors are promoting former lottery pick Justise Winslow from their G League affiliate and will sign him to a 10-day contract, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN (Twitter link).

Winslow, the 10th overall pick in the 2015 draft, has spent time with the Grizzlies, Clippers, and Trail Blazers since playing in Miami for the first five years of his NBA career. The 27-year-old underwent ankle surgery in March 2023, which delayed his ’23/24 debut.

In 17 appearances for the Raptors 905 at the G League level this season, Winslow has averaged 16.2 points, 7.2 rebounds, 2.6 assists, and 1.8 steals in 26.8 minutes per game, with a shooting line of .514/.276/.625.

A rangy, versatile wing, Winslow will provide some depth for Toronto and fill one of the team’s two open 15-man roster spots. The Raptors traded Dennis Schröder and Thaddeus Young to Brooklyn on Thursday in exchange for Spencer Dinwiddie, then waived Dinwiddie, creating a pair of roster openings.

Winslow’s 10-day contract will cover Toronto’s final three games before the All-Star break and then expire before the Raptors’ first post-All-Star contest on February 22. The club would be able to ink him to a second 10-day deal at that point, then would have to decide whether to sign him for the rest of the season or let him go (he could report back to Raptors 905 in that scenario).

Winslow will earn $166,176 over the life of his 10-day contract, with Toronto taking on a cap hit of $116,075.

Atlantic Notes: Bridges, Johnson, Grimes, Quickley, Winslow

Mikal Bridges and Cameron Johnson, two of the players the Nets acquired in the Kevin Durant blockbuster with the Suns last season, will play in Phoenix against their former team on Wednesday.

Bridges is looking forward to it.

Yeah, excited. Just a lot of years there, a lot of friends there. A lot of fans through the whole journey. It’s going to be exciting,” Bridges told Brian Lewis of the New York Post. “Obviously I’m not excited right now to talk about it, but when it comes, I will. But just get ready, main focus is to go out there and get a win.”

Johnson echoed those comments.

“I’m excited. It’s appreciation you gain for a city and for the fans when you play there for a while,” he said. “And as crazy as it is, you don’t know. That last game I played there, I didn’t know it’d be my last game in a Suns uniform. So it’ll be fun.”

We have more from the Atlantic Division:

  • Knicks guard Quentin Grimes was moved to the second unit and he’s thriving off the bench. In the last two games, he has averaged 16 points on 10.5 shot attempts. “I’m just out there playing free, really,” he told Zach Braziller of the New York Post. “Everybody sees it, just from me going out there, playing with guys trying to get me open shots. It’s easy and fun playing out with the second unit for sure.”
  • Knicks guard Immanuel Quickley is listed as questionable with knee inflammation for Wednesday’s game vs. Utah, Stefan Bondy of the New York Post tweets. He didn’t play against Toronto on Monday.
  • Justise Winslow, who is trying to work his way back into the league, debuted for the Raptors’ G League affiliate, Raptors 905, on Tuesday, NBA G League tweets. He scored 13 points in 16 minutes. Winslow was waived by Toronto during training camp.

Raptors Notes: Siakam, Barnes, Dick, Winslow

While fellow Raptors forwards Scottie Barnes and OG Anunoby seem to have adjusted quickly to new head coach Darko Rajakovic‘s offensive system, Pascal Siakam has taken longer to get going this fall. That’s why Siakam’s 31-point, 12-rebound showing in a road victory over Dallas on Wednesday was such an encouraging sign, writes Michael Grange of Sportsnet.ca.

Prior to Wednesday’s win, Siakam had averaged just 15.4 PPG and 6.1 RPG on 41.2% shooting in Toronto’s first seven games, well below his averages in recent years. Rajakovic, who spoke before Wednesday’s game about his belief in Siakam, predicted that a breakout was coming.

“It’s the start of the year, it’s a different style of play, he’s going through adjustments, but at the same time he is really trying to do the right thing. He’s trying to move the ball, he’s trying to find his teammates and that kind of took away a little bit from his aggressiveness,” the first-year coach said, per Grange. “The last two days I’ve talked to him like, ‘You better be aggressive first.’ Aggressive to score, aggressive to attack the rim, to shoot the ball. … I think very soon, hopefully tonight, he’s going to take off.”

It’s a big year for both the Raptors and Siakam, who will be an unrestricted free agent next July if he doesn’t sign an extension before then. With Anunoby and Gary Trent Jr. among the team’s other key players eligible for 2024 free agency, Toronto will have to use this season to determine which pieces are long-term keepers.

Here’s more on the Raptors:

  • Barnes’ strong start to the season seemed “inseparable” from Siakam’s struggles, according to Danny Chau of The Ringer, who says that figuring out whether those two forwards can coexist and thrive alongside one another is atop Toronto’s 2023/24 to-do list.
  • In a pair of articles for The Athletic, Eric Koreen takes a closer look at the Raptors’ developmental plan for lottery pick Gradey Dick and considers which of the club’s early-season trends should be taken most seriously. Koreen notes that Toronto ranks in the bottom third of the league in both defensive rebounding and free throw attempts, and suggests those trends may be difficult to reverse.
  • When he decided to play in the G League this season, Justise Winslow viewed the Raptors’ organization as a good fit for his skill set, given the team’s fondness for lengthy, versatile forwards, writes Blake Murphy of Sportsnet.ca. One of the Raptors 905’s affiliate players, Winslow is still rehabbing an ankle injury from last season and won’t be available when the team’s season gets underway on Friday, though he’s doing contact drills and is enthusiastic about nearing the end of the rehab process. “I’m doing really well, man,” Winslow said. “Attacking this rehab process every day, you know, doing things that help me mentally stay in a good place and, you know, find peace and stay patient within the journey. So, it’s been a really good process.”

Raptors Waive Jeff Dowtin, Justise Winslow, Mouhamadou Gueye

The Raptors have waived Jeff Dowtin, Justise Winslow and Mouhamadou Gueye, the team announced (Twitter link via Blake Murphy of Sportsnet.ca).

Winslow and Gueye were on Exhibit 10 deals and will be headed to the Raptors 905, Toronto’s G League affiliate. They’ll each be eligible for a bonus worth up to $75K if they spend at least 60 days with the 905. Michael Grange of Sportsnet.ca first reported (via Twitter) that Winslow and Gueye were expected to be cut following Friday’s preseason finale vs. Washington.

As for Dowtin, his non-guaranteed standard contract would have become partially guaranteed for $900K had he remained on the roster past tomorrow’s cut-down day. However, he had an uphill battle to make the team, with 15 players signed to guaranteed standard deals.

Fifteen Raptors got into Friday’s win against the Wizards, and Dowtin wasn’t one of them, Josh Lewenberg of TSN.ca noted during the game (Twitter link). That made it pretty obvious that he was going to be cut.

It’s unclear what’s next for Dowtin, Murphy adds (via Twitter). The 26-year-old guard spent last season on a two-way contract with Toronto, appearing in 25 games (10.4 MPG). With only two years of NBA experience, he’d be eligible to sign a two-way deal with any team as a free agent if he clears waivers.

The Delaware Blue Coats (the Sixers’ affiliate) control Dowtin’s G League rights, so if another NBA opportunity doesn’t come, returning to the G league could be an option.

The Raptors currently have 18 players on their roster, with all three two-way slots filled. As Murphy tweets, they’ll likely have one more Exhibit 10 sign-and-waive coming on Saturday.

Raptors Sign Justise Winslow, Waive Makur Maker

11:44am: Winslow got an Exhibit 10 deal, according to Murphy (Twitter link). As Murphy explains, the plan is for Winslow to start the season with the 905 and – if he shows he’s healthy – get back on the radar of NBA teams.

11:30am: The Raptors have signed free agent swingman Justise Winslow, tweets Blake Murphy of Sportsnet.ca. Camp invitee Makur Maker was waived to make room on the roster for Winslow, according to Murphy, who confirms that Maker is on track to join the Raptors 905, Toronto’s G League affiliate.

Winslow, the 10th overall pick in the 2015 draft, has spent time with the Grizzlies, Clippers, and Trail Blazers since playing in Miami for the first five years of his NBA career.

He played well down the stretch in 2021/22 for Portland after being acquired in the Norman Powell/Robert Covington trade, but his ’22/23 campaign was cut short by an ankle injury, which required surgery in March. Before the procedure, the 27-year-old averaged 6.8 points, 5.0 rebounds, and 3.4 assists in 19 games (26.8 MPG) on .409/.311/.714 shooting.

We don’t have any details yet on the terms of Winslow’s contract, but it’s rare for a player signed this late in the preseason to make a team’s regular season roster — especially a team like Toronto, which has 15 players on guaranteed contracts and Jeff Dowtin fighting to supplant one of those players on the 15-man squad.

If Winslow received a non-guaranteed Exhibit 10 contract, he would receive a bonus worth up to $75K if he’s waived by Toronto and then spends at least 60 days with the Raptors 905 in the G League. As noted above, that’s the plan for Maker.

Trail Blazers’ Justise Winslow Undergoes Ankle Surgery

Forward Justise Winslow underwent successful left ankle surgery on Wednesday to address joint instability, the Trail Blazers announced in a press release. He is expected make a full recovery and be ready for next season, per the team.

Winslow had a separate ankle procedure earlier this month to address persistent pain from what was initially diagnosed as a Grade 2 ankle sprain in December.

At the time of the first surgery, the Blazers said he would be reevaluated “in the coming weeks.” Evidently that reevaluation led doctors to believe a second surgery was necessary for the ankle to fully heal.

It’s another unfortunate setback for the 27-year-old, who has missed significant time due to injuries throughout his eight-year career. Over the past four seasons, Winslow has appeared in just 114 regular season games.

In 29 games (26.8 MPG) this season, Winslow averaged 6.8 PPG, 5.0 RPG, 3.4 APG and 1.0 SPG on .409/.311/.714 shooting. He will be an unrestricted free agent this summer and is earning $4.1MM in the final year of his contract.

Justise Winslow Had Ankle Surgery, Likely Out For Season

Trail Blazers forward Justise Winslow had a second opinion on his Grade 2 left ankle sprain sometime after the All-Star break and underwent a bone marrow aspirate concentrate procedure in March to address persistent pain from the injury, the team announced in a press release.

The Blazers say Winslow will continue to rehabilitate and will be reevaluated “in the coming weeks.” Considering he last played on December 21, it’s pretty safe to say he’ll miss the remainder of the 2022/23 regular season.

It’s another tough setback for Winslow, a former lottery pick (10th overall in 2015) whose career has been severely impacted by injuries. Over the past four years, he has played just 114 regular season games, for an average of 28.5 games per season.

In addition to injuries, Winslow has also struggled mightily with scoring efficiency throughout his eight NBA seasons, posting a .412/.315/.638 shooting line (.477 true shooting percentage) in 344 contests (25.9 MPG). However, he is a solid rebounder and plus passer for a forward, on top of being a strong, versatile defender.

Winslow will turn 27 years old later this month. In 29 games (26.8 MPG) this season, he averaged 6.8 PPG, 5.0 RPG, 3.4 APG and 1.0 SPG on .409/.311/.714 shooting (.466 TS%).

A former national champion at Duke, Winslow will be an unrestricted free agent this summer. He is earning $4.1MM in the final year of his contract.

Jusuf Nurkic Returning To Trail Blazers’ Lineup

After being sidelined since February 1 with a strained left calf, Jusuf Nurkic is available for Wednesday’s game in Boston, the Trail Blazers announced (via Twitter).

Coach Chauncey Billups said Nurkic will be in the starting lineup, but he’ll be on a minutes restriction, according to Aaron Fentress of The Oregonian.

The veteran center played 45 games before the injury, averaging 13.8 points, 9.4 rebounds and 2.9 assists per night. He returns in the middle of a tight playoff race, with Portland currently in a three-way tie for 10th place in the West at 31-34.

Nurkic was reportedly made available prior to the trade deadline, but his contract made it difficult for the Blazers to find any takers. The 28-year-old has three fully guaranteed seasons remaining at $54.375MM.

Anfernee Simons and Justise Winslow, who are both recovering from sprained ankles, continue to be listed as out on the Blazers’ latest injury report. Simons will miss his fourth straight game tonight, while Winslow hasn’t played since December 21.

Northwest Notes: Blazers, Wolves, Hyland, Jackson, Sexton

The Trail Blazers continued to deal with a number of injury absences as the second half of their season got underway on Thursday night. As Aaron Fentress of The Oregonian writes, Jusuf Nurkic (calf), Justise Winslow (ankle), and Anfernee Simons (ankle) are still on the shelf for Portland.

Nurkic hasn’t returned to practice yet, though Trail Blazers head coach Chauncey Billups said the veteran center is “getting better.” Winslow, meanwhile, has begun taking part in non-contact drills, while Simons is doing weight-bearing activities but no on-court work.

The Trail Blazers opted to give Damian Lillard and Jerami Grant the night off on Thursday following a series of weather-related travel days that saw Portland players spend several hours on the team plane on both Wednesday and Thursday. The club’s resulting starting lineup in Sacramento was an odd one that featured three trade-deadline additions (Cam Reddish, Matisse Thybulle, and Ryan Arcidiacono) along with two reserves (Drew Eubanks and Nassir Little).

While the Blazers lost in Sacramento, Billups liked what he saw from Little, whose 26 points were easily a season high (story via Fentress). Reddish also continued his solid play following the trade that sent him from New York to Portland, scoring 24 points of his own.

Here’s more from around the Northwest:

  • The Timberwolves came close to acquiring Bones Hyland from the Nuggets at this month’s trade deadline, Darren Wolfson of SKOR North said in his podcast The Scoop (hat tip to HoopsHype). According to Wolfson, Minnesota “would have done what the Clippers did” (given up two second-round picks) or even more than that. However, Wolfson believes Denver’s ownership group was reluctant to do any favors for former Nuggets president of basketball operations Tim Connelly, who now runs Minnesota’s front office.
  • Harrison Wind of DNVR Sports spoke to Ish Smith, who previously played with Reggie Jackson in Oklahoma City and Detroit, about what the Nuggets‘ newest point guard can bring to the team. Jackson played 18 minutes in his Denver debut on Thursday, scoring seven points to go along with four rebounds and a pair of assists.
  • Jazz guard Collin Sexton, who strained his left hamstring in the team’s final game before the All-Star break, remains sidelined as a result of that injury. The expectation it that Sexton will be reevaluated on Monday, says Sarah Todd of The Deseret News.