Martell Webster

Southeast Notes: Heat, Mack, Webster

Center Hassan Whitesides injury-plagued preseason has prevented the Heat starting five from gaining any continuity, Ira Winderman of the South Florida Sun Sentinel reports. Miami’s projected starting group of Whiteside, forwards Chris Bosh and Luol Deng, and guards Dwyane Wade and Goran Dragic have only played together for one game, Winderman points out. Whiteside has appeared in one preseason game and that has affected the team’s chemistry on the court, Bosh told Miami reporters. “It’s knowing what sets we can go to when things get tight,” Bosh said. “And the only way to kind of do that is to go through what we’re going through, go through different situations, get frustrated, fail a couple of times, and then really go back to the drawing board and be honest with it. But we’re getting there.”

In other news around the Southeast Division:

  • Hawks point guard Shelvin Mack had to work himself into playing shape during camp after recovering from shoulder surgery, Chris Vivlamore of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports. Mack, who was cleared for basketball activities at the start of camp, has scored 23 points in the last two preseason games after playing sparingly in the Hawks’ first three games. “I didn’t have a chance to play in the summer; my first day of playing was the opening day of training camp,” Mack told Vivlamore. “I wasn’t able to do a lot this summer.”
  • Hawks camp invite Edgar Sosa has reached an agreement with Petrochimi in Iran, international basketball expert David Pick tweets. Sosa, a 27-year-old point guard, played in Germany and Italy over the past two seasons.
  • Wizards small forward Martell Webster recently traveled to Nebraska for a second opinion on his ailing right hip, according to Jorge Castillo of the Washington Post. Webster, who had physical therapy this summer at the same location, hasn’t appeared in any of Washington’s five preseason games and his return remains unclear, Castillo adds. Webster appeared in just 32 regular-season games last season because of a back injury and shot a career-worst 23.3% on 3-point attempts.

Southeast Notes: Webster, Beal, Kalinoski

Martell Webster‘s partial guarantee of $2.5MM for 2016/17 becomes a full guarantee of more than $5.845MM if he plays in 70 games this coming season, and the Wizards forward has embraced a new commitment to his fitness this summer, as he explains to Ben Mehic of Fansided’s Wiz of Awes blog. Webster also made it clear that he wants to continue to play past the expiration of the contract, backtracking from comments he made this past fall that indicated he would most likely retire in 2017.

“I feel amazing,” Webster said to Mehic. “I transformed by body, I dropped 20 pounds and I’m probably going to drop 10 more, so that I’m about 206 — anywhere from 206 to 210 this next year, that’s what I want to play at. I feel amazing, a lot of pressure has been taken off my back and off of my joints and I feel great.”

See more from Washington and elsewhere around the Southeast Division here:

  • The Wizards are hesitant to commit to the four-year, maximum-salary extension that Bradley Beal wants unless it contains some non-guaranteed salary, given his history of injuries, writes J. Michael of That jibes with what Michael heard late last month, when he wrote that the Wizards wanted an escape hatch in any long-term deal while Beal’s camp was insistent upon a player option if he were to take less than the max. Ken Berger of reported in May that the Wizards were committed to giving him the max, but Michael says the club’s thinking has shifted slightly since last fall, when Washington seemed ready to move full speed ahead with extension plans despite Beal’s broken wrist.
  • The Heat and Hornets had expressed interest in signing undrafted Davidson guard Tyler Kalinoski to a deal for training camp, but he signed with Elan Chalon of France instead on a contract that included an NBA out, writes Ian Thomsen of That escape clause has expired, but the NBA dream is not dead for the Kenny Grant client, as Thomsen chronicles in a piece that examines the path of those on the fringe between the NBA and Europe. “A guy with his skill-set is intriguing,” said Dan Craig, who coached Kalinoski on the Heat’s summer league team. “I think he is right there on the brink of being a 14th or 15th guy on an NBA roster. In the right system, under the right coaching, he could possibly come in and give you impact minutes.”

Southeast Notes: Winslow, Hawks, Wizards

The Heat would be wise to move up in the draft and select Duke’s Justise Winslow, Jason Lieser of the Palm Beach Post opines. Winslow has the total package the Heat need at small forward if Luol Deng declines his player option and becomes an unrestricted free agent, Lieser continues. Winslow is expected to be off the board by the time Miami’s lottery pick comes up at No. 10 since many of the teams drafting 5-9 need a small forward, in Lieser’s estimation. Winslow could also play shooting guard and that’s the other position where the club needs an upgrade, Lieser adds.

In other news around the Southeast Division:

  • The Heat would not have traded two potential lottery picks to the Suns for Goran Dragic unless Miami got a guarantee of re-signing the unrestricted free agent, as Ira Winderman of the South Florida Sun Sentinel surmises. If the Heat fail to re-sign Dragic, they would be limited to using one of their exceptions to find a replacement since they would not have the cap space to chase a higher-level free agent, Winderman continues. Even a player such as Suns’ reserve and unrestricted free agent Gerald Green, who made $3.5MM last season, would be out of Miami’s reach if he wanted a raise unless a sign-and-trade was arranged, Winderman adds.
  • The individual brilliance of LeBron James has the Cavaliers in full control of the Eastern Conference Finals, but Hawks coach/acting GM Mike Budenholzer is among those with the team who aren’t about to give up on an egalitarian philosophy, observes Chris Vivlamore of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution“Every team has different ways to build and different ways to give themselves what they feel is their best chance,” Budenholzer said. “There is no doubt the way we’ve built the team with a lot of really good players, a lot of high-character guys. We feel like we can compete and play with anybody in the league. They’ve done it a different way. It’s a great battle. Obviously someone is going to win and lose. This is the way we are built. We believe in it. We think we can win at a high level. We’ll continue to do that.”
  • CSNWashington’s J. Michael gives his input on four key offseason decisions for the Wizards, who’ll seek a stretch four and have decisions to make regarding Nene Hilario, Martell Webster and soon-to-be free agent DeJuan Blair.

Southeast Notes: Beasley, Webster, Mo Williams

Michael Beasley has promised to reform in the past, but he knows there’s a decent chance his 10-day contract with the Heat represents his final opportunity in the NBA, observes Shandel Richardson of the Sun Sentinel. The former No. 2 overall pick’s deal expires at the end of Saturday.

“I’m still the same guy, but it’s desperation for me,” Beasley said. “This is my last chance, my last shot. It’s either play or sit down and I’m not ready to play at `The Y’, not ready for open gyms. I’m playing to eat right now, and I got kids. It adds that much more.”

While we wait to see if Beasley’s third career contract with the Heat will lead to a fourth, here’s more from the Southeast Division:

  • The Nets would have had to take Martell Webster if they’d traded Jarrett Jack to the Wizards at the deadline, and the deal would have involved the teams swapping future first-round picks, Grantland’s Zach Lowe tweets. Those Jack proposals appeared to be contingent on Brooklyn’s failed Reggie Jackson-for-Brook Lopez talks, as Lowe points out (on Twitter).
  • Mo Williams says he took his time on successful Cavs teams earlier in his career for granted and is grateful for last month’s trade that sent him from Minnesota to the Hornets and gave him a chance to compete for a playoff berth again, as he tells Jessica Camerato of Basketball Insiders. The soon-to-be free agent signed with the Wolves knowing they wouldn’t be contenders, but it seems his focus has changed. “I just want to win. It’s as simple as that — just win,” Williams said. “I’m at the point at my career where I’ve made a lot of money, been an All-Star, and one thing I haven’t experienced is playing at the highest level and that’s winning a championship. That’s everybody’s goal.”
  • Re-signing Trevor Ariza would have helped the Wizards better overcome their recent struggles, but that was a sacrifice the franchise was willing to make to save cap flexibility for a shot at Kevin Durant in the summer of 2016, as Ben Standig of examines.

Eastern Notes: Webster, Heat, McDaniels

Martell Webster doesn’t envision himself playing basketball for much longer thanks to chronic back pain, Jorge Castillo of The Washington Post writes. Webster is still in the process of rehabbing from his third back surgery in four years, and says he’ll most likely retire when his contract with the Wizards runs out in 2017. “I’ve always wanted to retire young,” Webster said. “I love this game and I respect this game, but I only want to be in it as long as I can be effective and as long as I can feel comfortable.”

Here’s the latest happenings in the Eastern Conference:

  •  Heat coach Erik Spoelstra isn’t necessarily looking for his new players to replace the departed LeBron James, Ray Allen, and James Jones, Ira Winderman of the Sun Sentinel writes. “Number one,” Spoelstra said, “we have to look at this team differently. It’s in a different lens. So we might not have to fill in the same boxes that we’ve had in the past. I think that might be a dangerous way to look at it. It’s open to where to this group can go. We felt, secondly, that we have enough shooting, and we’re encouraged by the guys that, one, either have a resume for it, or, two, have really been working on it.
  • The Hornets and Hawks might live to regret only inking Al Jefferson and Paul Millsap respectively, to shorter deals than they could have, Steve Kyler of Basketball Insiders opines. While he believes the idea of short-term deals is a sound one, Jefferson is all but assured to exercise his player option next summer, and both are expected to test out the free agent market. Both franchises will face competition to re-sign their players, and the new deals might prove more costly than if both players had simply been signed to longer deals in the first place.
  • Kyler also weighed in on K.J. McDaniels‘ deal with the Sixers. According to Kyler, McDaniels did the smart thing in rejecting Philly’s original four-year offer with very little in guaranteed money. McDaniels has an excellent chance at seeing significant playing time this season, and could easily parlay a decent season into a three or four year deal worth $4MM or $5MM, which would in essence double what the Sixers offered him, notes Kyler. By signing a one-year arrangement McDaniels will become a restricted free agent at season’s end.

Eastern Notes: Irving, Nets, Bucks, Raptors

David Blatt‘s hiring as Cavs coach elicited conversations between Kyrie Irving and the team that were more positive in tone than any others to date, a source tells Chris Broussard of (Twitter link). Cavs officials are heading to Irving’s home in New Jersey to present a max extension offer to Irving as soon as the extension window opens tonight, as Broussard notes, confirming a report from earlier this month (Twitter link). Here’s more from around the Eastern Conference:

  • The Nets and Bucks won’t be able to trade with each other during 2014/15 as a result of the Jason Kidd deal, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports (on Twitter).
  • Some in the Raptors organization are concerned that teams will make offers to Kyle Lowry and Greivis Vasquez at figures that Toronto is unwilling to match, according to Doug Smith of the Toronto Star.
  • The Raptors failed to waive Tyler Hansbrough by the Sunday guarantee date listed in his contract, so his partial guarantee of $1MM for next season has become a fully guaranteed $3,326,235 salary.
  • The Wizards had been making Martell Webster available in trade talk before his back surgery, which likely torpedoed movement toward any deal, reports Alex Kennedy of Basketball Insiders (Twitter link).
  • Washington reciprocates Garrett Temple‘s interest in returning, sources tell J. Michael of, who deems the point guard’s return to the Wizards as likely.
  • Soon-to-be restricted free agent Ekpe Udoh has changed agents, going with Brandon Grier and Michael Silverman of Athlete Management Group, USA Today’s Sam Amick tweets. The Bucks big man had previously been with Chris Luchey of CGL Sports.

Martell Webster To Miss Three To Five Months

Wizards small forward Martell Webster will be sidelined the next three to five months after undergoing surgery Thursday to repair a herniated disk in his lower back, the team announced. He’ll probably take even longer to return to the lineup, since the timetable the team mentions in the release is for his absence from all basketball activities, meaning he’ll need additional time to regain his conditioning, as J. Michael of notes (on Twitter). The 27-year-old is under contract through 2017, but his injury puts added pressure on the team to sign soon-to-be free agent Trevor Ariza, whom Webster backs up.

Many of Webster’s skills overlap with Ariza’s, making him a logical replacement should Ariza prove too expensive to retain. There’s been concern about the team’s ability to re-sign both Ariza and Marcin Gortat, and while Michael’s report earlier today suggested that Gortat and Ariza are dual top priorties for the club, but other dispatches have made it seem as though Gortat would take precedence.

Webster is set to make nearly $5.382MM next season after signing a four-year deal for the full value of the non-taxpayer’s mid-level exception last summer. His deal is non-guaranteed for the final season if he plays in fewer than 180 games in the first three years. He has 102 more appearances to go to hit that mark.

The absence of Webster also figures to open up playing time for Otto Porter, last year’s No. 3 overall pick who wound up buried on the Washington bench as a rookie.

Eastern Notes: Webster, Heat, Magic, Allen

As the final week of the preseason gets underway, let’s round up a few items from around the Eastern Conference….

Odds & Ends: Wolves, Turiaf, Williams, Webster

The Timberwolves appear ready to finalize deals bringing Kevin Martin and Corey Brewer on board, but those aren't the only outside free agents the team targeted. According to Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports (via Twitter), Minnesota has emerged as the frontrunner to sign Ronny Turiaf. I can't imagine Turiaf will earn more than the veteran's minimum, so he shouldn't affect the Wolves' cap outlook if a deal is reached. Here are a few more odds and ends from around the NBA:

  • Martin, who trains with Brewer in Florida, was very involved in lobbying Brewer to sign with the Timberwolves, according to Jerry Zgoda of the Star Tribune (via Twitter).
  • Several teams are courting Mo Williams, so there's no guarantee he lands with the Hawks if Atlanta declines to match Jeff Teague's offer sheet, tweets Gery Woelfel of the Racine Journal Times.
  • According to Martell Webster, he received interest from the Cavaliers, Bucks, Knicks, Clippers, Blazers, and Pelicans ("big-time") before re-signing with the Wizards (Twitter link via Michael Lee of the Washington Post).
  • Grantland's Zach Lowe examines seven teams that could use their amnesty provision within the next few days.
  • Brandon Bass brushed off questions about a potentially uncertain future with the Celtics, as Chris Forsberg of writes.

Wizards Sign Martell Webster To Four-Year Deal

JULY 10TH, 4:18pm: The Wizards have officially announced Webster's signing in a press release.

JULY 2ND, 1:57pm: The fourth year of Webster's deal will be partially guaranteed, tweets Wojnarowski.

1:42pm: Wojnarowski reports (via Twitter) that Webster's deal with the Wizards will be worth $22MM over four years. So my prediction that the four-year agreement would probably mean a lower annual salary was way off.

Webster's contract will almost certainly use up Washington's entire mid-level exception, since, as we noted in an earlier post, a four-year deal worth the full MLE this summer will work out to $21,990,500. That means that the Wiz have already committed to using both their mid-level exception and their bi-annual exception (on Eric Maynor), so if the team hopes to add more free agents, it will have to be via sign-and-trade or the veteran's minimum.

1:35pm: The Wizards and Martell Webster have reached an agreement on a four-year deal, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports (via Twitter). Multiple reports suggested yesterday that even after the Wizards drafted Otto Porter and Glen Rice Jr. last week, re-signing Webster was the team's top priority in free agency.

TNT's David Aldridge had indicated that Washington would likely use part, but not all, of its mid-level exception to bring back Webster. Considering the 26-year-old is receiving a four-year deal, I would guess the annual salary will be a little lower than if Webster had re-signed for just one or two years, though the terms of the agreement haven't been reported yet.

Webster signed a one-year contract worth $1.75MM with the Wizards last summer and enjoyed the most productive season of his eight-year career. In 76 games for Washington, the Relativity Sports client established new career-highs in PPG (11.4), 3PT% (.422), and PER (13.9), among other categories.