Marcus Simmons

NBA Teams Designate Affiliate Players

NBA teams cut as much as 25% of their rosters at the end of the preseason, but franchises that have D-League affiliates have a way to maintain ties to many of the players they release from the NBA roster. An NBA team can claim the D-League rights to up to four of the players it waives, as long as the players clear waivers, consent to join the D-League, and don’t already have their D-League rights owned by another team. These are known as affiliate players, as our Hoops Rumors Glossary entry details.

NBA teams allocated 46 affiliate players to the D-League at the beginning of the season last year, and this year, that number has risen to 56, according to the list the D-League announced today. These players are going directly to the D-League affiliate of the NBA team that cut them and weren’t eligible for the D-League draft that took place Saturday. Teams that designated fewer than the maximum four affiliate players retain the ability to snag the D-League rights of players they waive during the regular season, but for now, this is the complete list:

Boston Celtics (Maine Red Claws)

Cleveland Cavaliers (Canton Charge)

Dallas Mavericks (Texas Legends)

Detroit Pistons (Grand Rapids Drive)

Golden State Warriors (Santa Cruz Warriors)

Houston Rockets (Rio Grande Valley Vipers)

Indiana Pacers (Fort Wayne Mad Ants)

Los Angeles Lakers (Los Angeles D-Fenders)

Memphis Grizzlies (Iowa Energy)

Miami Heat (Sioux Falls Skyforce)

New York Knicks (Westchester Knicks)

Oklahoma City Thunder (Oklahoma City Blue)

Orlando Magic (Erie BayHawks)

Philadelphia 76ers (Delaware 87ers)

Phoenix Suns (Bakersfield Jam)

Sacramento Kings (Reno Bighorns)

San Antonio Spurs (Austin Spurs)

Toronto Raptors (Raptors 905)

Utah Jazz (Idaho Stampede)

Also, several players who were on NBA preseason rosters are on D-League rosters through means other than the affiliate player rule. Most of them played under D-League contracts at some point within the last two years, meaning their D-League teams have returning player rights to them. Others entered through last weekend’s D-League draft, while others saw their D-League rights conveyed via trade. Most of these players aren’t with the D-League affiliate of the NBA team they were with last month, with a few exceptions.

Roster information from Adam Johnson of D-League Digest, Chris Reichert of Upside & Motor and freelancer and Hoops Rumors contributor Mark Porcaro was used in the creation of this post.

Bulls Waive Jordan Crawford, Marcus Simmons

The Bulls have waived Jordan Crawford and Marcus Simmons, the team announced via press release. The release of Simmons, a shooting guard who went undrafted in 2011, comes as no surprise, but Crawford, a four-year NBA veteran, appeared to have a decent shot to stick for opening night. The moves reduce the Bulls roster to 15 players, including 13 full guarantees, though that doesn’t necessarily mean the team is through with preseason cuts, since Chicago usually starts the season with only 13 or 14 players. Both Crawford and Simmons signed non-guaranteed deals.

Crawford, 26, was trying to restart his NBA career after spending last season in China and the D-League. The combo guard made 35 starts in 39 appearances for the Celtics in 2013/14, but he spent the second half of that season buried on the bench with the Warriors following a trade, and he’s had trouble regaining his foothold in the NBA since. He averaged 3.2 points in 7.2 minutes per game across five preseason appearances this fall.

Simmons and Crawford were briefly teammates with the D-League Fort Wayne Mad Ants last season. The 27-year-old Simmons won 2010/11 Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Year honors as a senior at USC, but he’s struggled offensively, shooting just 28.8% on 52 three-point attempts in the D-League last year. He went scoreless in about three minutes of preseason action for the Bulls.

Cameron Bairstow and Cristiano Felicio remain as the only Bulls without full guarantees. Bairstow has a $425K partial guarantee, and while the Bulls are high on Felicio, he’s without any guaranteed money.

Central Notes: Rose, Ilyasova, Hammond, Crawford

It’s not yet clear how long Derrick Rose will be out with his latest injury, an orbital bone fracture suffered during practice, but it’s poor timing, given that new Bulls coach Fred Hoiberg must implement his system in camp without him, and Rose’s recent comments about free agency, opines Ken Berger of The point guard is well-known for his frequent injuries, but he also makes a habit of remarks that antagonize him to fans, Berger notes. The latest such slip of the tongue came Monday when he talked about all the money he could make when he hits free agency in 2017, the summer the cap is projected to hit $108MM. David Haugh of the Chicago Tribune takes Rose to task for coming across as “a tone-deaf millionaire,” though Rose insists he’s just making prudent plans for the future.

“I’m trying to prepare myself and my family,” Rose said, according to Haugh. “It’s all for my son, even though we’re comfortable. You talk about ‘X’ amount of dollars, it raised everybody’s eyebrows. There’s nothing wrong with being overprepared.”

See more on the Bulls and their Central Division rivals:

  • Ersan Ilyasova was discontented with the revolving door of coaches he had with the Bucks and has already taken to Pistons coach/executive Stan Van Gundy, who traded for him this past summer, as the stretch four tells Keith Langlois of Van Gundy is entering the second season of a five-year deal“Me and Stan had this conversation by phone,” Ilyasova said. “It’s a really good thing. I played for a lot of coaches; I never see a coach like this who really cares about you and when you see something like that, you want to give even more. On some level, coach and player, is going to be always issues. The communication is a key all the time and it’s really important. If you have a coach like this, Stan, who is going to explain to you, it helps.”
  • Bucks co-owner Wesley Edens said Monday that he felt it important to align the end of GM John Hammond‘s contract with that of coach Jason Kidd, notes Charles F. Gardner of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel (Twitter link). The deals for both Hammond and Kidd are set to expire in the summer of 2017 following the one-year extension the Bucks granted Hammond earlier this month.
  • The non-guaranteed contract that Jordan Crawford signed with the Bulls is for the minimum salary and covers only one season, reports Eric Pincus of Basketball Insiders (Twitter link). Camp invitees Jake Anderson and Marcus Simmons are also on one-year, non-guaranteed deals for the minimum salary, according to Pincus.
  • Cavaliers coach David Blatt bristled last season whenever someone mentioned that he was a rookie NBA head coach, but he admitted Monday that he didn’t realize how much he had to learn about coaching in the league, observes Chris Fedor of the Northeast Ohio Media Group. Blatt  survived apparent early-season doubts from Cavs brass about his performance before guiding the team to the Finals.

Bulls Sign Marcus Simmons, Jake Anderson

The Bulls have signed former USC shooting guard Marcus Simmons and former Iowa State point guard Jake Anderson, the team announced via press release. The moves, combined with the official signing of Jordan Crawford, give the Bulls 18 players, including 13 with fully guaranteed contracts.

Simmons, 27, has played overseas and in the D-League since going undrafted in 2011. He was a reserve for the D-League Fort Wayne Mad Ants this past season, averaging 4.0 points in 16.7 minutes per game across 41 appearances and shooting just 28.8% from three-point territory.

Anderson played under new Bulls coach Fred Hoiberg in 2010/11. The 28-year-old also has a history with the Bulls organization, having played on Chicago’s summer league squad in 2012. Like Simmons, Anderson went undrafted in 2011, spending his first pro season in the D-League before heading overseas.