Kaleb Canales

Western Notes: Davis, Lakers, Kessler, Garuba, Canales

While the Lakers are certainly well aware of Anthony Davis‘ injury history, they were impressed with how he battled through his foot issues last season and recognized that he spearheaded their defensive turnaround after the trade deadline, with the club advancing to the Western Conference Finals despite a terrible start to 2022/23.

“They understand AD and his work ethic has shown,” Klutch Sports CEO Rich Paul told Mark Medina of Sportskeeda on Friday. “He has some injuries, but it wasn’t due to him not working. It’s not like he came into camp overweight or showed any laziness. There were just fluke things. That happens in the game.”

Paul said the two sides are still determining whether Davis will have a player option in his new three-year extension, but it will not contain a team option.

Both Medina — writing for The Sporting Tribune — and Jovan Buha of The Athletic believe it’s a win-win for Davis and the Lakers, though there’s obviously some risk involved for Los Angeles. The two authors note that Davis could potentially have earned more money had he hit free agency in 2024.

Here’s more from around the West:

  • After a standout rookie season, Jazz center Walker Kessler, who will be representing Team USA at the upcoming World Cup, has added 15 pounds of muscle this offseason, according to Tony Jones of The Athletic. “A lot of the offseason has been about gaining weight and gaining strength,” Kessler said. “It’s been a lot of hard work. But I’m excited to try and put myself in a position to make a difference on the floor, so the work has been a lot of fun. I love the weight room. I love working on my body. I’m really excited to be a part of Team USA and extremely thankful that I get to be a part of this. I think the amount of talent and the amount of knowledge that’s going to be on the roster is amazing. I’m trying to learn as much as I can and use this experience to try and better myself in every way that I can.”
  • Speaking to Nacho Duke of Spanish outlet Marca, Thunder big man Usman Garuba said he hopes to spend the rest of his professional career in the NBA. “If possible, I intend to play my entire career in the NBA, and I’m going to push it to the maximum,” Garuba said, per BasketNews.com. “I do not think about another thing. Anything can happen, but I only have in mind to continue in the NBA all my professional life.” Oklahoma City acquired Garuba last month via trade.
  • Veteran assistant Kaleb Canales is joining the Texas Legends — the Mavericks‘ G League affiliate — as associate head coach, sources tell ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski (Twitter link). Canales, who became the NBA’s first Mexican-American head coach in 2012, last worked for the Pacers in 2020/21. He also had stints with Portland, Dallas and New York over his lengthy coaching career, so it will be a reunion with the Mavs organization.

And-Ones: Rudez, Trade Candidates, Singh, Canales

Former NBA forward Damjan Rudez has announced his retirement, as Scott Agness of Fieldhouse Files relays (via Twitter). Rudez confirmed his decision on his own Twitter account, posting a message thanking everyone who was “a part of this long and beautiful journey with me.”

A 6’10” Crotian, Rudez spent most of his professional career in Europe. Besides playing in his home country, he also had stints in Belgium, Slovenia, Spain, Monaco, and The Netherlands. He did briefly play in the NBA from 2014-17, appearing in a total of 146 games for the Pacers, Timberwolves, and Magic.

Rudez’ NBA career got off to a promising start in Indiana, where he made 40.6% of his three-point attempts in 68 games (15.4 MPG) as a 28-year-old rookie. However, he was traded to Minnesota in exchange for Chase Budinger following his rookie year and his production fell off after that.

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

  • Yossi Gozlan of HoopsHype identifies some players around the NBA who aren’t getting regular minutes and could become trade candidates this season. Some, including Raptors guard Goran Dragic and Kings big man Marvin Bagley III, are probably already on the trade block, while others, such as Magic center Robin Lopez and Pistons wing Hamidou Diallo, are more speculative.
  • Indian prospect Principal Singh is finalizing a three-year contract with the New Zealand Breakers of Australia’s National Basketball League, tweets Marc Stein. Singh spent last season with the G League Ignite, but logged just 25 minutes in four games with the developmental club.
  • Veteran NBA assistant coach Kaleb Canales will be the associate head coach for Mexico’s national team, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN (Twitter link). Canales, who became the NBA’s first Mexican-American head coach in 2012, last worked for the Pacers under Nate Bjorkgren.
  • Jonathan Givony and Mike Schmitz of ESPN (Insider link) have updated their 2022 NBA mock draft and provided early impressions on a handful of prospects, including Duke guard Trevor Keels, who enjoyed an impressive college debut on Tuesday.

Eastern Notes: Mobley, Gores, Wizards, Bonner

The Cavaliers fielded calls for over a month regarding the No. 3 pick in the draft. However the team’s brass was more excited about adding a rookie with a very high ceiling than reconstructing the roster, Chris Fedor of the Cleveland Plain Dealer writes. The Cavs selected USC big man Evan Mobley with the pick. “We were able to draft a transformative talent, whose versatility, athleticism and physical gifts are qualities we covet in a player. Evan Mobley checks each of those boxes,” GM Koby Altman said.

We have more from the Eastern Conference

  • Pistons owner Tom Gores calls top pick Cade Cunningham a natural leader and feels giddy about the team’s future, according to Keith Langlois of Pistons.com“I’ve never felt better,” Gores said. “I woke up this morning and felt like we won already. We haven’t won a game yet. We felt like we won. I feel excited about where we’re at, but I also know through my life experiences we’ve got to go to work. We’ve got a great foundation.”
  • Zach Guthrie and Mike Miller will be part of Wes Unseld Jr.‘s staff with the Wizards, Jake Fischer of Bleacher Report tweets. Guthrie worked under Rick Carlisle in Dallas last season, while Miller is the former coach of the G League’s Westchester Knicks. Former Magic assistant Pat Delany had already agreed to join the Wizards.
  • Becky Bonner is expected to be a bench coach on Jamahl Mosley‘s Magic staff, Fischer adds in another tweet. She’s already the team’s Director of Player Development and Quality Control. Nate Tibbetts, Dale Osbourne and Kaleb Canales are expected to be on the front of Orlando’s bench assisting Mosley, according to Fischer (Twitter link).

Eastern Notes: Pacers, Knicks, Rondo, Hawks, Magic

The Pacers are adding Calbert Cheaney to Nate Bjorkgren‘s coaching staff as an assistant, sources tell Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN (Twitter link). An Indiana native who played his college ball for the Hoosiers, Cheaney spent 13 years in the NBA as a player. He has been an assistant for Atlanta’s G League affiliate for the last two seasons.

Cheaney is the latest addition to a new-look coaching staff that will also feature Kaleb Canales and Greg Foster, in addition to returning Pacers assistant Bill Bayno. Indiana recently issued a press release confirming that all three of those coaches will be part of Bjorkgren’s staff in 2021.

Here’s more from around the Eastern Conference:

Central Notes: Brown, Pacers, Markkanen, Carter, Pistons

Bucks guard Sterling Brown has reached a $750K settlement agreement with the City of Milwaukee stemming from his lawsuit accusing police officers of racially profiling him and employing excessive force for a January 2018 parking violation, reports Shams Charania of The Athletic.

It was over a year ago that Brown turned down a $400K settlement offer from the city. That offer also didn’t include an admission of liability, which was a sticking point for the Bucks guard. As Charania details, the new agreement will see the city admit to a constitutional violation and commit to incorporating changes in the Police Department’s standard operating procedures.

Here’s more from around the Central:

  • The Pacers are hiring Kaleb Canales as an assistant coach, sources tell ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski (Twitter link). The newest member of Nate Bjorkgren‘s staff has served an assistant for the Trail Blazers, Mavericks, and – most recently – the Knicks, and was briefly Portland’s interim head coach in 2012.
  • Appearing on The Lowe Post podcast, ESPN’s Jonathan Givony passes along some Bulls-related chatter, telling colleague Zach Lowe that he’s heard the team is higher on Lauri Markkanen than Wendell Carter at this point (hat tip to RealGM). Givony suggests that if Chicago wants to move up from No. 4 to No. 1 in the draft, the team may have to part with Carter to do so. “It seems like a pretty hefty price to me, but that is what it’s going to cost it looks like,” Givony said.
  • Keith Langlois of Pistons.com takes a look at how new Pistons general manager Troy Weaver plans to balance the team’s long-term priorities with his aversion to bottoming out and writing off full seasons.

Latest On David Fizdale’s Future With Knicks

The Knicks continue to internally discuss the future of the franchise and whether coach David Fizdale should be a part of it. However, several factors make a mid-season firing seem unlikely.

Aside from Fizdale stating that he receives assurance from owner James Dolan after every game, Marc Berman of the New York Post hears that a lack of faith in the assistant coaches on the team is a major deterrent in letting Fizdale go. Promoting one of the assistants—Jud Buechler, Keith Smart or Kaleb Canales—is considered a “sketchy alternative” by the front office.

Fizdale has another guaranteed year on his contract after this season, so that likely plays a role as well. Unless the Knicks somehow land a superstar this offseason, it may not make sense for the team to pay the full salary of two coaches when the team is not winning games.

Developing young talent is a major goal of the franchise right now and Fizdale has produced some results early this year. He has helped install confidence in Frank Ntilikina and has given RJ Barrett an opportunity to grow. The coach isn’t going to fix everything. Players like Kevin Knox may never come around, as he’s having a second straight dreadful season, but Fizdale is getting consistent effort from his team, which can only help his cause to remain the coach of the Knicks.

Atlantic Notes: Sixers, Nurse, Irving, Canales

The Sixers don’t have enough room on their roster to take on all six of their 2018 draft picks, let alone sign free agents this summer or bring 2017 draft-and-stash prospect Jonah Bolden over from Israel. For that reason, Keith Pompey of The Philadelphia Inquirer says that moves can be expected.

Pompey lists multiple scenarios in which the Sixers could shake up their payroll, either packaging first-round picks and a player to move into the top five in hopes of landing Luka Doncic or Michael Porter Jr., or simply just trading into the top seven or eight and targeting Mikal Bridges.

Of course the Sixers could also be slightly more ambitious and put together a package of their 2018 No. 10 pick, Markelle Fultz, Robert Covington or Dario Saric and look to make a play for Spurs forward Kawhi Leonard.

There’s more out of the Atlantic Division today:

  • After 27 years as a coach, Nick Nurse finally became the lead man on an NBA bench. Michael Grange of Sportsnet documented the man’s journey and the process that Raptors president of basketball operations Masai Ujiri went through before promoting him.
  •  The Celtics believe that point guard Kyrie Irving is happy in Boston, Adam Himmelsbach of The Boston Globe reports, despite recent speculation otherwise.
  • The Knicks are adding Kaleb Canales as an assistant coach, Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN writes. Canales had previously spent time with the Trail Blazers and Mavericks.

Coaching Notes: Pistons, Bucks, Sampson

We'll have to wait until July for most of this summer's player movement, but a handful of coaches are already on the move. Here's the latest on a pair of head coaching searches and a Trail Blazers assistant heading south:

  • A new candidate has emerged in the Pistons' head coaching search, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports, who reports that Detroit is eyeing Spurs assistant Mike Budenholzer. Wojnarowski says Joe Dumars traveled to San Antonio and met for several hours with Gregg Popovich's top assistant earlier this week. The Pistons are also expected to line up a meeting with Rockets assistant Kelvin Sampson when possible, says the Yahoo! scribe.
  • Despite their reported interest in Sampson, the Bucks haven't asked for permission to speak to him yet, tweets Gery Woelfel of the Racine Journal Times, noting that the Bucks are still free to talk to Sampson's agent.
  • Sampson himself told reporters, including John Rohde of the Oklahoman, that he won't talk to any interested teams until the Rockets/Thunder series is over "one way or the other."
  • The Bobcats have requested and received permission to interview Lakers assistant Steve Clifford, reports Rick Bonnell of the Charlotte Observer.
  • Former Blazers interim head coach and current assistant Kaleb Canales is leaving Portland to take on a similar assistant role with the Mavericks, according to Jason Quick of the Oregonian (Twitter link). Canales will replace offensive coordinator Jim O'Brien, who is retiring from coaching, Rick Carlisle tells Earl K. Sneed of Mavs.com (Twitter link). As TNT's David Aldridge points out (via Twitter), this isn't the first time Carlisle attempted to get Canales to Dallas.

Blazers Notes: Stotts, Canales, Olshey

Earlier today, the Trail Blazers held a press conference to introduce newly-minted head coach Terry Stotts to the public.  The latest out of Portland..

  • Stotts hasn't made a decision on if Kaleb Canales will be the lead assistant on his staff and a decision will be made once the entire staff is complete, tweets Chris Haynes of CSNNW.com.
  • However, Canales always figured to be a part of the staff as Stotts told him prior to getting the job that he would love to have him on board, tweets Mike Tokito of The Oregonian.
  • General Manager Neil Olshey said that hiring Canales as assistant was "absolutely not a prerequisite to [Stotts] being hired," according to Tokito (via Twitter).
  • Stotts hasn't set a deadline for assembling his staff but contact with assistant coaching candidates has already begun, Ben Golliver of Blazer's Edge tweets.
  • Stotts says he's waiting to get permission from some teams to speak with certain candidates, tweets Haynes.
  • The new head coach says that his primary focus will be on developing the team's young players, according to the Associated Press.  At the presser, Olshey said he spoke with every GM and head coach that Stotts has worked for, and also talked to players including Dirk Nowitzki.

Blazers Hire Terry Stotts As Head Coach

8:07pm: Neil Olshey announced that Kaleb Canales will remain on the team as an assistant coach, according to a tweet by Quick.  

6:01pm: Jason Quick of The Oregonian tweets that the Trail Blazers have hired Terry Stotts as their new head coach. Stotts had been an assistant on the Mavericks' coaching staff since 2008 after holding head coaching positions with the Bucks from 2005 to 2007 and the Hawks from 2002 to 2004. His best season to date occurred during 2005-06, when he led Milwaukee to 40 wins and the eighth seed in the Eastern Conference. Overall,  Stott's record as a head coach stands at 115 wins and 168 losses. 

Ben Golliver of BlazersEdge.com relayed an official statement released by GM Neil Olshey (Sulia link): 

“Terry is one of the elite offensive minds in the NBA, has extensive experience with multiple organizations and was instrumental in the Dallas Mavericks winning the 2011 NBA Championship…He understands the vision for the future of the franchise, appreciates the process involved and will create an environment on the court that will produce championship habits."

Golliver also noted a statement from Stotts (Sulia link): 

"I’m very pleased to be a part of a great franchise in a beautiful city with such a proud history. I look forward to working hard with Neil and our players toward the ultimate goal of bringing another championship to Portland.”

Chris Haynes of CSNNW.com reports that Kaleb Canales, the other finalist for the Portland's coaching search, will be retained by the franchise in some capacity (Twitter link). Canales had served as the team's interim head coach last season and was reportedly well-liked by members of the organization.