Kenyon Martin Sr.

Central Notes: Pistons, Thibodeau, Martin, Cavs

The Pistons have talked about trading for a point guard, but coach/executive Stan Van Gundy remains firm about the sort of future assets he doesn’t want to give up in any deal, as MLive’s David Mayo notes. Detroit hasn’t won since Brandon Jennings tore his Achilles tendon last week.

“It has to be on our terms,” Van Gundy said of any potential trade. “We’ve already decided what we would and wouldn’t give up, and right now, people obviously want more than we’re willing to give up.”

Van Gundy also backed off an earlier assertion that the team would make a move by today and said he won’t rush to make any decision. Here’s the latest from around the Central Division, as Detroit slips back down the standings:

  • Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau‘s coaching style is once more drawing criticism amid renewed rumors of tension between him and the front office, but Thibodeau tells USA Today’s Sam Amick that he has no intention of slackening his demands on players. Derrick Rose tells Amick that he has no issues with the coach, as Amick writes in a separate piece, echoing his report from earlier that opposing teams are keeping an eye on how the situation plays out in Chicago with the hope that Thibodeau will become available.
  • It’s been “a little different” playing for friend and former teammate Jason Kidd on the Bucks, as Kenyon Martin admits. Charles F. Gardner of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel has the details, with the Bucks having signed Martin today for the rest of the season. “The respect is there,” Martin said. “He respects me and I respect him to the utmost. Him having me here is an honor.”
  • Joe Harris is headed back on D-League assignment just one day after the Cavs recalled him, the team announced. It’s the fourth time in nine days Cleveland has sent the rookie, whose deal is guaranteed through next season, to the Canton Charge.

Bucks Sign Kenyon Martin For Rest Of Season

JANUARY 29TH: The deal is official, the team announced.

JANUARY 28TH, 7:35pm: A source with the Bucks has confirmed that the team will sign Martin for the remainder of the season, Gardner reports (Twitter link).

10:12pm: Martin will be signed to a deal that covers the remainder of the season by the end of the week, Marc Stein of reports (Twitter link).

JANUARY 27TH,1:23pm: Neither Martin nor Kidd acknowledged today that there’s any agreement in place for the rest of the season, as a pair of tweets from Charles F. Gardner of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reveal. Kidd said team officials would discuss Martin’s situation, while the big man said he merely hopes the Bucks will re-sign him once his second 10-day contract expires at the end of Wednesday.  “I know it’s a business,” Martin said. “Nothing is promised.”

JANUARY 20TH: Martin and the Bucks have already agreed in principle to a deal that covers the rest of the season, reports Shams Charania of RealGM (Twitter link). The 15th-year veteran signed his second 10-day contract with Milwaukee on Monday, and since the Bucks can’t issue any more 10-day pacts to him after this one expires, Martin figures to sign the contract for the rest of the season at that point. Charania doesn’t specify how much money is involved or whether the pact will extend into next season, but players who sign after consecutive 10-day contracts almost always do so for the prorated minimum salary.

JANUARY 16TH: The Bucks are likely to retain Kenyon Martin for the rest of the season, as David Alarcón of HoopsHype reports (Twitter link; translation via HoopsHype). Martin is on a 10-day contract that expires at the end of Sunday, and Alarcón indicates that Milwaukee wants to sign him to another 10-day pact and then ink him for the rest of the season. The 37-year-old Andy Miller client would presumably be on board with continuing to play for Jason Kidd, his long-ago teammate, in spite of reported interest from the Cavs and meetings earlier in the season with the Grizzlies and Rockets.

Martin hasn’t seen much playing time during his brief tenure with Milwaukee, totaling 15 minutes spread over three games so far. The Bucks have welcomed back Ersan Ilyasova since coming to terms with Martin, but the team is without starting power forward Jabari Parker for the rest of the season because of a torn ACL, and Larry Sanders continues to sit out with personal issues. So, Milwaukee is still thinner than expected up front.

The team let go of Nate Wolters to open a roster spot for Martin, so keeping Martin would once more limit Milwaukee’s flexibility. The Bucks are nonetheless more than $7MM shy of the salary cap, so they have the financial wherewithal to eat more guaranteed salary if they deem it necessary as they fight for a playoff spot. Milwaukee has climbed to fifth place in the Eastern Conference at 21-19.

Bucks Ink Kenyon Martin To Second 10-Day Deal

The Bucks have signed Kenyon Martin to his second 10-day contract with the team, Milwaukee announced. The move is no surprise, since the Bucks are reportedly likely to keep the former No. 1 overall pick for the rest of the season. They can’t sign him to any more 10-day contracts once this one expires, so Milwaukee would have to ink him for the rest of the season if the team wants to extend his stay.

Martin appeared in three games for a total of 15 minutes during his first 10-day contract with the Bucks, which expired Sunday night. The Bucks had been dealing with multiple injuries in their frontcourt when they first began to go after the 37-year-old, and they waived guard Nate Wolters to open a roster spot for him. Power forward Ersan Ilyasova returned to the lineup for the same game in which point guard Kendall Marshall tore his ACL last week, but it appears the Bucks are content to keep Martin around rather than bolster their backcourt.

Milwaukee’s roster is once more at 15 players with the readdition of Martin, who’s a former teammate of coach Jason Kidd. The Bucks are about $7.2MM under the cap.

And-Ones: Draft, Martin, Jazz, Nets, Europe

Jahlil Okafor‘s Duke team is faltering, but the center’s grip on the top spot in the 2015 draft isn’t any looser, as he tops the latest Big Board from Chris Mannix of and the updated top 100 prospect list from Jonathan Givony of DraftExpress. Ohio State combo guard D’Angelo Russell is up to No. 4 on Givony’s list, while Mannix has him at No. 8, still a leap from his No. 11 position in Mannix’s last rankings. Russell’s also in the top 10 in the latest Hoops Rumors Draft Prospect Power Rankings. Here’s more from around the NBA:

  • Kenyon Martin went unsigned this season before he joined the Bucks on a 10-day contract last week, but he admits that his recovery from ankle surgery wouldn’t have allowed him to be ready for training camp this past fall, Newsday’s Al Iannazzone tweets.
  • Jazz draft-and-stash prospect Ante Tomic still has aspirations of making the NBA, as he tells David Pick of (Twitter links). FC Barcelona Regal, his Spanish team, holds a team option for next season and “anything is possible,” Tomic said. The 27-year-old center was the 44th overall pick in the 2008 draft.
  • Possible bidders for the Nets include former Oracle CEO Larry Ellison, investor David Bonderman and hedge fund manager David Einhorn, as Josh Kosman and Tim Bontemps of the New York Post hear, though it’s unclear if any of them are indeed poised to bid. Entertainment mogul David Geffen has been interested in the team in the past, an insider told Robert Windrem of Nets Daily.
  • Commissioner Adam Silver envisions four teams in Europe some day, but he admits the league has a long way to go to get there, notes Sean Deveney of The Sporting News, who adds that the NBA seems to keep pushing the idea farther into the future.
  • Magic coach Jacque Vaughn‘s job security appears to be in doubt, but Brian Schmitz of the Orlando Sentinel believes GM Rob Hennigan should be feeling the heat, too.
  • Quincy Miller, whom the Clippers nearly signed a 10-day contract, Spurs camp cut JaMychal Green and one-year NBA veteran Seth Curry are among the potential NBA signees to watch at the D-League showcase, which begins today. Marc J. Spears of Yahoo! Sports look at those three and others who’ll be angling for NBA jobs.

Knicks Notes: Antetokounmpo, Calderon, Martin

Bucks swingman Giannis Antetokounmpo believes strongly that the Knicks should call up his older brother, Thanasis Antetokounmpo, from the D-League, Marc Berman of The New York Post writes. “He’s ready,’’ the younger Antetokounmpo said. “I don’t think the Knicks have to lose anything. They lose 15 [straight] now. Tomorrow is going to be 16. They don’t have anything to lose. My brother could bring energy to the team and [is] hard-working, and guys from the team can see that and take something from him.’’ With three players currently on their roster with 10-day contracts, the Knicks will have an available slot shortly, Berman notes.

Here’s more out of New York:

  • Kenyon Martin, who is currently with the Bucks on a 10-day deal, was asked why the Knicks didn’t show any interest in his services this season, Berman writes in a separate piece. Martin’s response was,  “You got to ask them that, boss. You know that. They made that decision. It is what it is. I moved on. I went and got my surgery and did most of [the rehab] on my own. I don’t hold no grudges. I thought it would’ve been a little different. It is what it is. I’m not bitter.’’ Milwaukee is reportedly considering signing Martin for the remainder of the season.
  • Point guard Jose Calderon understands that he could be traded by the Knicks prior to February’s deadline, Al Iannazzone of Newsday writes. “It can happen,” Calderon said. “Why are you going to be surprised? They’re changing stuff. I don’t know what’s really on their minds right now. I have no idea what’s going to happen. It’s the NBA. It’s a business. They have a plan. They really want that cap space. That’s why they made some of the moves. It can happen again.” The Knicks appear to be shopping Calderon along with Andrea Bargnani.
  • Calderon isn’t focusing on his trade status, Iannazzone adds, but rather on trying to help turn around a nightmarish Knicks season. Calderon said that until something changes he will consider himself part of New York’s future, the Newsday scribe notes. “I came here thinking I was part of it [the Knicks’ rebuilding plan],” Calderon said. “I’m still thinking about it. It’s nothing different yet. So I’m still part of it.

Central Notes: Haywood, Martin, Bulls

There are a number of executives around the league who believe that the Cavaliers aren’t finished reworking their roster, Alex Kennedy of Basketball Insiders reports (Twitter link). Cleveland is most likely going to try and trade center Brendan Haywood, whose $10.5MM contract for the 2015/16 season is non-guaranteed, Kennedy notes.

Here’s more out of the Central Division:

  • Cleveland’s salary cap outlook has changed markedly with all of its recent additions, and Nate Duncan of Basketball Insiders took an in-depth look at how the Cavs‘ finances and cap space were altered by these deals. Duncan also notes that Haywood’s contract could be used as a trade piece, but adds that Cleveland would likely have to add another asset as a sweetener in any deal, something its previous deals have left in short supply.
  • Bucks coach Jason Kidd doesn’t think it will take long for Kenyon Martin, who was recently inked to a 10-day contract, to acclimate to his new team, Charles F. Gardner of The Journal Sentinel writes. “Just in shootaround, you could see the difference in his voice, helping guys out,” Kidd said. “We want to put him in a good position so if the game presents itself where he can get a couple minutes, yes. He’s not shy, so that helps for these young guys understanding what it takes to win.”
  • The Bucks would like to keep Martin for the remainder of the season, Gery Woelfel of The Racine Journal Times reports (Twitter link). Teams can ink players to a maximum of two 10-day contracts per season before they either have to release them or sign them to a guaranteed contract that covers the rest of the season.
  • One issue that the Bulls still need to address is finding a reliable backup for swingman Jimmy Butler, Steve Aschburner of writes.
  • The Pistons‘ sudden winning ways have altered the team’s immediate plans to give rookie Spencer Dinwiddie more NBA playing time, Keith Langlois of writes. “They’re playing really well,” coach Stan Van Gundy said. “We’ve had to change our approach from early in the year. That was a change in approach at 5 and 23. So right now, that whole thing with Spencer has to be on hold right because of how well we’re playing. You’re always adjusting within a game and within a season. This has been sort of a crazy first half of the season, in terms of you lose 13 in a row, then you win seven in a row. It’s sort of hard to wrap your head around, quite honestly.

Bucks Sign Kenyon Martin To 10-Day Deal

FRIDAY, 9:57am: The deal is official, the Bucks announced.

“Kenyon provides some needed depth to our front court and brings an additional veteran presence to help develop our young team,” Bucks GM John Hammond said in the team’s statement. “He has always been known for his tough-minded, physical approach to the game and we’re excited to welcome him to the Milwaukee Bucks.”

THURSDAY, 8:02am: The Bucks will sign Kenyon Martin to a 10-day contract this week, reports Marc Stein of Milwaukee has 15 players already, so a corresponding move will be necessary. Still, the news is no surprise, since coach Jason Kidd and his staff put Martin through a workout last week. Kidd and Martin were teammates on the Nets in the early 2000s.

Martin also drew attention from the Cavaliers, who have an open roster spot after their pair of trades this week. Still, it appears the Bucks won over the Andy Miller client, who also met with the Grizzlies and the Rockets earlier this season. There were conflicting reports about whether those visits with Memphis and Houston were for playing or coaching positions, but there was no doubt that Milwaukee’s interest was in Martin as a player. The Bucks are still missing Larry Sanders, even though he’s denied retirement rumors, while Ersan Ilyasova is out with a concussion and Jabari Parker is done for the year with a torn ACL. Small forward Damien Inglis is missing the entire season.

Inglis appears like a possible candidate to be let go to accommodate Martin, though Inglis’ salary is guaranteed for next year, too. Nate Wolters has the least amount of guaranteed salary on the books of any member of the Bucks, and the guard has seen action in only 11 games this year after a strong rookie season in 2013/14. Still, it’s unclear whom the Bucks are thinking of offloading.

The 37-year-old Martin, a former No. 1 overall pick, is no stranger to 10-day contracts, having signed two with the Knicks in 2013. New York followed with a contract for the rest of the 2012/13 season and kept him for 2013/14, too.

Bucks Work Out Kenyon Martin; Cavs Eye Him

WEDNESDAY, 10:34am: Kidd acknowledged today that Martin worked out in front of him and Bucks assistant coaches Tuesday, Gardner notes (Twitter links). “He looked good,” Kidd said. “There’s nothing, just a workout. Just to talk to him. We’ll see what happens.” Kidd acknowledged that it’s questionable whether Martin can still perform, but the coach praised Martin’s intelligence and says he believes that a team will sign him at some point, as Gardner shares in a full story.

TUESDAY, 10:11am: Martin will work out in front of Kidd today, Spears writes in a full story, so evidently the Bucks are indeed interested in him for a playing role. The Cavs also have some interest in Martin, Spears adds, so it appears that feeling is mutual, though Cleveland isn’t rushing to replace the injured Anderson Varejao, according to Spears.

9:20am: The discussions are “preliminary,” a source tells Charles F. Gardner of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

9:05am: Milwaukee has yet to make any offer to Martin, Spears clarifies (on Twitter).

8:57am: Bucks coach Jason Kidd will meet with free agent big man Kenyon Martin today, reports Marc J. Spears of Yahoo! Sports (Twitter link). Martin, who turns 37 today, is traveling to Cleveland, where Milwaukee is preparing for Wednesday’s game against the Cavs. Martin recently expressed interest in joining the Cavs, but it’s unclear if he’ll be speaking with anyone in the Cleveland organization while he’s in town. Kidd and Martin have a relationship that dates back to their time as teammates on the Nets in the early 2000s, when they made back-to-back Finals appearances together, Spears notes (on Twitter).

Martin met with the Grizzlies last month and with the Rockets in October, though in each case there were conflicting reports about whether the visits were about coaching positions or playing roles. Spears doesn’t specify what Martin and Kidd will discuss. The Bucks have a full 15-man roster, and every player is fully guaranteed, as our roster counts show. Still, No. 2 overall pick Jabari Parker is expected to miss the season with a torn ACL, Ersan Ilyasova is recovering from a concussion, and center Larry Sanders has been out with flu-like symptoms, leaving the team thin up front.

The Knicks put Martin in the starting lineup 15 times last season, and he averaged 4.3 points and 4.2 rebounds in 19.8 minutes per game across 32 appearances. Still, the former No. 1 overall pick has only played in 50 NBA games since the end of the 2011/12 season.

Central Notes: Martin, Butler, Knight, Love

We at Hoops Rumors want to wish all of our readers and their families a merry Christmas and a happy holiday season! While we wait for an exciting day of NBA action to tip off, let’s round up the latest from the Central Division:

  • The Cavs were struck with terrible news yesterday when they learned that Anderson Varejao would be sidelined for the remainder of the season with a torn Achilles. In wake of the injury, one free agent big man, Kenyon Martin, admitted he’d be interested in joining Cleveland if the team wanted to bring him aboard, reports Marc J. Spears of Yahoo! Sports (on Twitter). “I’m definitely interested,” said the 36-year-old veteran. “I believe I can immediately help in that system. I’m healthy and ready to play now.” Signing Martin could help bolster their depth in the frontcourt, but the title-hopeful Cavs seem more likely to trade for a starting caliber center than to ink Martin.
  • Restricted free agent in waiting Jimmy Butler won’t call himself a star, but Alex Kennedy of Basketball Insiders writes that a lot of other people around the league are willing to say it for him. Butler’s career year has come on the heels of his decision to turn down a contract extension that would have paid him $11MM per season over the next four years, and although he’s has expressed a desire to stay with the Bulls, it will now likely cost the Chicago a lot more than that figure to keep Butler around after his stellar start to the year.
  • The BucksBrandon Knight is another soon-to-be restricted free agent who is making the most of his opportunity, argues John Zitzler of Basketball Insiders. Knight, the only Milwaukee player to start all 28 games, is averaging 17.5 points, 5.4 assists and 1.3 steals per contest. Knight has indicated a desire to stay with the Bucks, and Milwaukee can match any offer made to the 23-year-old this summer, but Zitzler speculates that the guard could get an offer of more than $12MM annually, similar to deals Kemba Walker and Kyle Lowry signed.
  • Flip Saunders is doing his best to move on from the Kevin Love fiasco and isn’t interested in talking about it anymore, as Chris Haynes of the Northeast Ohio Media Group observes. Before Tuesday’s Wolves-Cavs game, Saunders went out of his way to avoid mentioning Love by name, except for commenting, “From the league, I’m at liberty not really to talk about Kevin Love. So I can’t talk about him.” However, there is no such policy in place by the league, as Haynes points out, and Saunders openly discussed the Love deal as recently as Monday.

 Arthur Hill contributed to this post.

Grizzlies To Audition Kenyon Martin

WEDNESDAY, 8:10am: Today’s meeting is about a coaching position, tweets Michael Scotto of SheridanHoops (Twitter links). Given the conflicting reports, it seems possible that the Grizzlies have interest in Martin both as a player and as a coach, though that’s just my speculation. Player-coaches aren’t allowed under the current collective bargaining agreement, so the Grizzlies and Martin would have to choose one or the other.

TUESDAY, 11:42pm: The Grizzlies are set to work 14-year veteran Kenyon Martin on Wednesday, reports Ronald Tillery of The Commercial Appeal (Twitter link). No signing is imminent, Tillery cautions, but Memphis nonetheless apparently wants a close look at the former No. 1 overall pick who’s a month and a half shy of his 37th birthday.

The Andy Miller client met with the Rockets last month, though there were conflicting reports about whether the visit was in connection with a possible roster spot or a coaching gig. There’s otherwise been paltry interest in Martin since last season, when he finished up his second year with the Knicks. In April he expressed a desire to return to play for New York and suggested that he had no intention to retire just yet.

Memphis has only 14 players after waiving Kalin Lucas this weekend, so the team has the flexibility to take on Martin without letting anyone else go. The Grizzlies have a sliver of the mid-level exception left over, but it’s not enough to accommodate Martin, whose prorated minimum salary would exceed that amount. The team is less than $1MM shy of the luxury tax line, and while it appears as though a prorated minimum salary contract for Martin would fit beneath that threshold, it would severely limit the Grizzlies’ flexibility to make other moves unless it were a non-guaranteed arrangement.