Luis Montero

Pistons Sign Reggie Hearn To Two-Way Deal, Waive Luis Montero

JANUARY 15, 2:43pm: The Pistons have made their deal with Hearn official, confirming in a press release that they’ve waived Montero. The team also announced Felder’s signing.

JANUARY 14, 1:26pm: The Pistons will waive Montero and sign both Hearn and Felder to two-way contracts, tweets Rod Beard of The Detroit News. Their pro-rated deals will give them each 22 days in the NBA.

12:50pm: The Pistons are close to finalizing a two-way contract with G League guard Reggie Hearn, tweets Marc Stein of The New York Times.

Hearn, who was in training camp with the Kings, has been playing for the Reno Bighorns and is averaging 14.7 points in 14 games.

The Pistons currently have Luis Montero filling one two-way spot and were reported yesterday to to be close to a deal with Kay Felder for the other one, so either the Felder deal fell through or some other roster move is in the works. Detroit converted Dwight Buycks‘ two-way deal to a regular contract on Friday.

Pistons Sign Luis Montero To Two-Way Deal

July 24: The signing is official, according to a team press release.

July 21: Free agent guard Luis Montero is poised to sign a two-way contract with the Pistons, a league source tells Jorge Sierra of HoopsHype. It will be the first two-way deal in franchise history for Detroit.

Montero, 24, went undrafted in 2015, but caught on with the Trail Blazers and made his NBA debut for Portland during the 2015/16 season. After playing limited minutes in 12 games for the Blazers, Montero has spent most of his time with various G League clubs.

In 2016/17, Montero averaged 8.8 PPG and 6.2 RPG in 49 total contests for the Reno Bighorns and the Sioux Falls Skyforce.

Our two-way contract FAQ provides more details on two-way deals, while our tracker shows which players have signed or agreed to them so far.

NBA D-League Affiliate Players For 2016/17

Throughout the offseason, and in the weeks leading up to the start of the regular season, NBA teams are permitted to carry 20 players, but that total must be cut down to 15 in advance of opening night. However, up to four players waived by teams before the season can be designated as affiliate players and assigned to their D-League squads.

The players have some say in the decision — if they’d prefer to sign with a team overseas, or if they get an opportunity with another NBA club, they’re free to turn down their team’s request to have them play in the D-League. Most NBA and international teams have fairly set rosters by late October though, so having the opportunity to continue playing in the same system is appealing to many of those preseason cuts. Especially since they’ll maintain NBA free agency while they play in the D-League.

There are a few other rules related to D-League affiliate players. A player whose returning rights are held by a D-League team can’t be an affiliate player for another club, which is why undrafted free agents from the current year are commonly signed and assigned. Additionally, an affiliate player must have signed with his team during the current league year, which explains why we often see players signed and quickly waived in the days leading up to the regular season. And, of course, not every NBA team has a D-League affiliate, so clubs like the Hawks, Nuggets, or Clippers have no place to send affiliate players.

With all that in mind, here are the NBA D-League affiliate players to start the 2016/17 season:

Austin Spurs (San Antonio Spurs)

Canton Charge (Cleveland Cavaliers)

Delaware 87ers (Philadelphia 76ers)

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Heat Part Ways With Five Players

3:06pm: The Heat have announced via press release that the moves are official.

1:40pm: The Heat intend to part ways with Briante Weber, Beno Udrih, Okaro White, Luis Montero and Vashil Fernandez, Ira Winderman of The Sun Sentinel relays (All Twitter links). The team will be on the hook for $100K for White, $327,989 for Weber and $980,431 for Udrih, unless those players are claimed off waivers by another team.

Udrih played 36 games with Miami last season before agreeing to a buyout in February to help the team avoid the luxury tax, which certainly gained him some fans within the organization. In those 36 games for the Heat last season, Udrih averaged 4.4 points, 1.8 rebounds and 2.5 assists in 16.3 minutes per outing. He shot .434/.333/.882 from the field.

Weber, 23, appeared in a combined seven games with Miami and Memphis in 2015/16. He averaged 4.4 points, 3.6 rebounds and 3.0 assists in 24.1 minutes per outing while shooting .359/.000/.750.

White went undrafted out of Florida State in 2014 and then headed overseas, spending the 2014/15 campaign with the Italian club Granarolo Bologna, where he averaged 12.2 points and 6.9 rebounds on the season. White then headed to Greece, spending this past season with Aris BC, notching averages of 13.9 points, 7.0 rebounds and 1.6 assists in 26.8 minutes per outing. He shot .465/.337/.791 from the field on the year.

A 6’7″ swingman from the Dominican Republic, Montero signed with the Heat after being waived by the Blazers earlier this month. He appeared in 12 games as a rookie last season for Portland, averaging 1.2 points and 0.3 rebounds per night in limited playing time. Montero played just one game this preseason for Portland before he was cut, scoring three points against Utah on October 3rd.

Fernandez went undrafted this June after spending his four-year college career at Valparaiso. The 6’10” big man averaged just 5.6 PPG during his senior season, but also chipped in 7.3 RPG and 3.3 BPG over the course of 36 games.

Eastern Notes: Carter-Williams, Jack, Smith

Discussing the Bulls swap of Tony Snell for Michael Carter-Williams with the Bucks, Chicago coach Fred Hoiberg said he likes what the former Rookie of the Year can bring to the team’s second unit, Vincent Goodwill of relays. “I think he’s a versatile basketball player,” Hoiberg said. “He’s shown he can get into the ball and defend full court. His numbers speak for itself on what he can do on the floor as a scorer, averaging over 14 and a half points for his career. Also a very good rebounder and passer with good vision, averaging six rebounds and six assists for his career. Just excited to get him, a long and athletic guard that can play multiple positions.

It’s tough because they become family,” said Taj Gibson regarding the loss of Snell, adding that said Snell was happy someone wanted him. “There have been a lot of ups and downs, been in a lot of hostile situations with them. So it’s always tough but it’s the business part of it. It never gets easy but you have to just wish them well knowing they’re going to a better situation to help their game and just keep pushing forward.

Here’s the latest from the Eastern Conference:

  • Hawks coach/executive Mike Budenholzer confirmed that point guard Jarrett Jack, who is recovering from knee surgery, won’t be ready to take the court when the regular season begins, Chris Vivlamore of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution relays (via Twitter). No timetable was given for Jack’s return.
  • J.R. Smith is excited that his contract standoff with the Cavaliers is now in the past, adding that he intends to live in Cleveland year-round now that he has a long-term deal, Michael Beaven of writes. “It feels great,” Smith said of being back. “I didn’t take my physical yet, so I can’t practice, but it feels good to be in the gym, be around the guys and to be a part of it. I have worked out and done a bunch of basketball drills, but as far as 5-on-5 pickup I haven’t done anything like that. I had a great team behind me as far as on the agent side. The Cavs wanted me and they knew I wanted to be here.
  • Heat coach Erik Spoelstra is excited about the addition of swingman Luis Montero, who was signed by the team earlier today, Ira Winderman of The Sun Sentinel notes (Twitter links). “We were actually surprised that he was available and wanted to take advantage of that,” Spoelstra said. “He’s one of these long,athletic, combo wing guys that we’ve had success with.

Heat Sign Luis Montero, Waive Keith Benson

The Heat continue to cycle through camp invitees, announcing today in a press release that they’ve waived center Keith Benson, replacing him on their roster with guard Luis Montero. The Blazers just waived Montero on Saturday, so Miami didn’t waste much time in snatching him up once he cleared waivers.

A 6’7″ swingman from the Dominican Republic, Montero signed with the Blazers last summer. He appeared in 12 games as a rookie last season, averaging 1.2 points and 0.3 rebounds per night in limited playing time. Montero played just one game this preseason for Portland before he was cut, scoring three points against Utah on October 3.

Benson’s deal with the Heat was only partially guaranteed, with the big man getting $75K from the Heat. The details on Montero’s contract aren’t yet known, but he’ll likely receive little to no guaranteed money as well. Both players are candidates to end up with the Sioux Falls Skyforce, Miami’s D-League affiliate.

Miami continues to carry 20 players on its roster after waiving one and adding another. The team will have to make five cuts before opening night.

Trail Blazers Waive Luis Montero

The Trail Blazers have waived Luis Montero, the team announced today. The move brings Portland’s roster down to 17 players.

A 6’7″ swingman from the Dominican Republic, Montero signed with the Blazers in July of 2015. He appeared in 12 games as a rookie last season, averaging 1.2 points and 0.3 rebounds per night in limited playing time. He played just one game this preseason, scoring three points against Utah on October 3rd.

Montero was scheduled to make $874,636 this season and a non-guaranteed $1,014,746 for 2017/18.


Western Notes: Davis, Solomon, Karl

The Pelicans intend to rely on forward Anthony Davis more in clutch situations this season, the crew over at Basketball Insiders note in their season preview for the team. “At the end of the game, I think we need to get the ball to Anthony more,” coach Alvin Gentry said regarding Davis. “We need to start training him to be the guy down the stretch. If you’ve got a great player, that’s what you do. He is gonna be our closer. And that doesn’t necessarily mean making the shot. But I think he’s gonna be the guy more times than not that we’re gonna depend on to make the play at the end of the game. That means maybe finding the open guy, or when a double team comes being able to swing the basketball and put guys in the position where they can make the shot. I think we’re gonna have to start trying to go through him — and it may be a screen-and-roll situation, where he screens and rolls to the basket. But we’ve got to have him involved in a lot of the plays at the end of the game.”

Here’s more from out West:

  • The Jazz held a workout today for unrestricted free agent forward Richard Solomon and will take another look at him on Tuesday, Emiliano Carchia of Sportando reports (via Twitter). The 24-year-old spent the 2015/16 campaign overseas in Japan with Toyota Alvark, appearing in 59 games and averaging 11.3 points, 8.9 rebounds and 0.9 assists. Solomon’s shooting line was .536/.179/.660. Over the summer he played in Orlando for the Thunder’s summer league squad and then in Las Vegas for the Magic’s entry.
  • The Lakers have officially named Coby Karl, who is the son of longtime NBA coach George Karl, as the coach of the L.A. D-Fenders, their D-League affiliate, the team announced. “We are excited to welcome Coby back to the D-Fenders family as our new head coach,” D-Fenders executive Joey Buss said. “His extensive experience as both a player and coach in this league is something we’re very happy to bring to the organization as we look to build on a season of success.
  • The Blazers will need to remain patient with guard Luis Montero, who displayed solid playmaking ability during summer league play, but didn’t shoot the ball particularly well, Mike Richman of The Oregonian writes in his training camp preview of the player.

And-Ones: Baynes, Kilpatrick, Early

Pistons coach and president of basketball operations Stan Van Gundy cannot understand why Aron Baynes has so many social media critics, he told the assembled media, including Hoops Rumors. Van Gundy signed Baynes to a three-year, $20MM contract last summer to back up All-Star center Andre Drummond and believes he’s gotten his money’s worth. “Some of you guys tell me that some fans on comment boards don’t like him. I don’t know what they’re watching,” Van Gundy said. “He’s certainly one of the top backup centers in the league. You compare him to the other backup centers, he’s been absolutely terrific. He plays with great passion and emotion.” Baynes scored a career-high 21 points against the Nets on Saturday.

In other news around the league:
  • Sean Kilpatrick‘s offensive ability earned him some long-term security, Nets interim coach Tony Brown told the media, including Hoops Rumors, over the weekend. The shooting guard agreed to a multiyear deal that includes a guarantee for next season after his two 10-day contracts with the team expired. “He’s very effective shooting from deep and he’s been getting some good looks off the dribble,” Brown said. “Obviously, the new deal for him is well deserved. They’re thinking down the road, for the future of the ballclub, that he’d be a nice piece to have on the roster.”
  • The anticipation for next season is growing in Philadelphia as the current season winds down, Sixers coach Brett Brown told Brian Seltzer of “Names get associated with prospective draft picks that we’re studying now that the [NCAA] Tournament’s going on,” Brown said. “The end is near where you’re looking at our existing players and how we’re going to respond to some of the people that are out of contract.  You start talking a little bit more seriously about some of the free agent strategies.  You start talking a little more seriously about the Joel Embiid situation, and Dario [Saric] situation, how it all fits.”
  • Former Bucks and Pelicans point guard Nate Wolters is leaving his Turkish team Besiktas, international journalist David Pick tweets, citing a source. Wolters chose to play overseas in July after playing for the Clippers’ summer league team.
  • The Trail Blazers recalled shooting guard Luis Montero and power forward Cliff Alexander from the D-League’s Santa Cruz Warriors on Sunday, the team informed Mike Richman of The Oregonian. Both rookies appeared in four games with the Warriors’ D-League affiliate during their assignment and have played seven games apiece for the Blazers this season. Alexander will likely be active for the Blazers’ game against the Mavericks on Wednesday because big man Meyers Leonard is out indefinitely with a dislocated shoulder, Richman adds.
  • The Knicks assigned small forward Cleanthony Early to their D-League affiliate in Westchester on Monday, the team tweets. The Knicks activated him on Sunday for the first time since he was shot in the right knee during a December 30th robbery.

Arthur Hill contributed to this report.

And-Ones: Robinson, Johnson, Parsons

Nate Robinson is trying to leap from the pages of Hoops Rumors to Pro Football Rumors. The diminutive NBA veteran who began this season with the Pelicans announced in a YouTube video that he’s going to make a run at playing in the NFL. The video features testimonials from NFL players Marcedes Lewis and Brendon Ayanbadejo, former NBA teammates Jamal Crawford and Glen Davis, as well as former football coach Rick Neuheisel, all of whom insist that Robinson is perhaps the only athlete who could make the transition from professional basketball to professional football.

Robinson, who turns 32 in May, went to the University of Washington on a football scholarship in 2002 and impressed with electrifying plays on the field, but many years have passed since he played competitive football. He didn’t say which position he would like to play in the NFL, but he spoke about both offense and defense in the video, inferring that he might try to market himself as being able to play on either side of the ball.

Here’s more from around the league:

  • Injured Heat point guard Tyler Johnson is aiming to play again this season after undergoing surgery on his left shoulder on February 3rd, though there is still no definitive timetable for his return to action, Ira Winderman of The Sun Sentinel writes. “I’m still hopeful, for sure,” Johnson said. “But, again, I’m not going to push it to a point where I can maybe damage it a little bit more or do anything to have a setback. I think every day it feels a little bit better. So I guess that’s where the optimism comes in, is that every day I wake up I can start to do a couple of new things that I wasn’t able to do before. So, I’m going to push for that. That’s a personal goal. But the doctors and the trainers, they haven’t given me a timetable. They said, ‘We’re not going to give you a date to where you can come back,’ because we could get to that time and it’s not ready.
  • Chandler Parsons, provided he remains with the Mavericks, is a solid candidate to replace Dirk Nowitzki as the face of the franchise once the German power forward calls it a career, Eddie Sefko of The Dallas Morning News opines. While Parsons certainly has the skill set to carry a franchise, the question remains whether he will put in the work required to achieve greatness, Sefko adds. The small forward is reportedly almost certain to turn down his player option for 2016/17, and Houston and Orlando are expected to pursue him.
  • The Blazers assigned Cliff Alexander and Luis Montero to the D-League, Chris Reichert of Upside & Motor tweets. The duo will report to the Warriors‘ affiliate as part of the NBA’s flexible assignment rule, since Portland does not have its own affiliate.

Zach Links contributed to this post.