Max Hooper

Workouts Update: Suns, Hornets, Kings, Grizzlies

Two prominent power forward prospects had individual workouts with the Suns this weekend, writes Paul Coro of The Arizona Republic. Croatian star Dragan Bender and Washington freshman Marquese Chriss both were in Phoenix for unannounced sessions that may influence the Suns’ thinking with the No. 4 pick. Coro adds that Bender worked out for Minnesota, which holds the fifth selection, on Thursday and will visit Boston, which has the No. 3 choice, early this week.

In addition, Phoenix held a workout Saturday for three players who may be options with the 13th pick: Michigan State power forward Deyonta Davis and shooting guard Denzel Valentine, along with small forward Timothe Luwawu of France. Also at the session were Louisville center Chinanu Onuaku and Arizona State center Eric Jabobsen.

There’s more workout news as draft day draws closer:

  • The Hornets, who have the 22nd pick, will welcome six players for a workout today, the team tweeted. The session will feature Virginia shooting guard Malcolm Brogdon, High Point combo forward John Brown, South Carolina small forward Michael Carrera, North Carolina power forward Joel James, UNLV shooting guard Patrick McCaw and Virginia center Mike Tobey.
  • The Kings are also planning to bring in six players today for a workout, the organization announced. Participants will be Arkansas-Little Rock point guard Josh Hagins, Arizona point guard Gabe York, Kansas small forward Brannen Greene, Oakland shooting guard Max Hooper, UC Santa Barbara combo guard Mike Bryson and Utah small forward Jordan Loveridge. The Kings hold pick No. 8.
  • The Grizzlies have a workout scheduled this afternoon with Texas A&M combo guard Alex Caruso, Oregon small forward Elgin Cook, Kansas center Cheick Diallo, Memphis power forward Shaq Goodwin, Baylor small forward Taurean Prince and LSU combo guard Tim Quarterman. Memphis has the 17th pick.
  • The Raptors, who own picks No. 9 and 27, will hold a workout today for Syracuse shooting guard Malachi Richardson, tweets Adam Zagoria of
  • The Bulls held a workout Friday, tweets Michael Scotto of Sheridan Hoops. Attending were Maryland center Diamond Stone, UNLV center Stephen Zimmerman, Toledo power forward/center Nathan Boothe and Northern Iowa point guard Wes Washpun. The Bulls have the 14th pick.

Central Notes: Pistons, Butler, Bucks, Pacers

The Pistons and Bulls pulled off the first trade of the 2016 NBA offseason today, with Detroit sending 2014 second-rounder Spencer Dinwiddie to Chicago for Bulls big man Cameron Bairstow. According to Pistons GM Jeff Bower, the team wanted to give Dinwiddie a change of scenery, allowing him to get into a situation “that could benefit him long-term,” as Vince Ellis of The Detroit Free Press writes.

The trade came on the heels of the Pistons’ announcement earlier this week about the team’s new-look front office. As David Mayo of outlines, Detroit’s front office restructure involved a promotion for Pat Garrity, who earned an assistant general manager title and will manage the club’s salary cap. Mayo has the details and quotes from Garrity on the 39-year-old’s new role.

Here’s more from around the Central division, including one more Pistons note:

  • According to Keith Langlois of (Twitter link), the Pistons hosted six more prospects for pre-draft workouts today, with Kentucky guard Tyler Ulis among the participants. The other five prospects in attendance were Sheldon McClellan (Miami), Tim Quarterman (LSU), Bryn Forbes (Michigan State), Max Hooper (Oakland), and Josh Adams (Wyoming).
  • Joel Brigham of Basketball Insiders attempts to put together five plausible trade proposals involving Bulls forward Jimmy Butler, with a focus on the Timberwolves and Celtics as Chicago’s potential trade partners.
  • Whether or not the Bucks seriously consider Malachi Richardson as early as No. 10 in next week’s draft remains to be seen, but Milwaukee is fond of the former Syracuse wing, and director of scouting Billy McKinney has had his eye on Richardson for a while, writes Rick Braun of The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.
  • Nate Taylor of The Indianapolis Star and Wheat Hotchkiss of explore whether the Pacers should opt for upside or select a safer, more proven commodity with their first-round pick in this year’s draft.

And-Ones: Maxiell, Maker, Hernangomez

Former NBA player Jason Maxiell has inked a deal to play ball in the Philippines with Tropang TNT, international journalist David Pick reports (on Twitter). The 33-year-old power forward last played in the NBA during the 2014/15 campaign when he appeared in 61 games for the Hornets and averaged 3.3 points and 3.3 rebounds in 14.4 minutes per outing.

Here’s the latest from around the league:

  • The Nuggets have workouts scheduled on Wednesday for Malcolm Brogdon (Virginia), Juan Hernangomez (Estudiantes), Demetrius Jackson (Notre Dame ), Diamond Stone (Maryland ), Tyler Ulis (Kentucky), Stephen Zimmerman (UNLV), the team announced via press release.
  • The Jazz have workouts planned on Wednesday with Chase Fischer (BYU), Dejounte Murray (Washington), Max Hooper (Oakland) and Brandon Taylor (Utah), the team announced.
  • Thon Maker is expected to work out for the Spurs in the near future, Jabari Young of The San Antonio Express-News relays (via Twitter).
  • The Knicks, Wizards and Suns have worked out former UConn guard Sterling Gibbs, Alex Kennedy of Basketball Insiders relays (on Twitter).
  • Hernangomez, who is the No. 26 overall player in this year’s draft according to Jonathan Givony of DraftExpress, indicated that whether or not he joins the NBA next season depends on which team selects him, Kennedy tweets.

Pacific Notes: Rondo, Teletovic, Workouts

While the Kings would like to have Rajon Rondo return next season, the team is prepared to move on from the point guard rather quickly if the bidding for his services escalates, Zach Lowe of writes. The scribe doesn’t cite a specific dollar figure that would be the cut off point for Sacramento, but does note that it is lower than many might think. Rondo earned $9.5MM this season and is likely to command more than that in unrestricted free agency this summer given the amount of teams in need of help at the point guard position, though that is merely my speculation. The 30-year-old made 72 appearances in 2015/16, averaging 11.9 points, 6.0 rebounds and 11.7 assists in 35.2 minutes per outing.

Here’s more from the Pacific Division:

  • The Lakers may not have a choice in the matter, given that the Sixers select ahead of them in this June’s draft, but team officials prefer LSU forward Ben Simmons over Duke’s Brandon Ingram, Chad Ford of ESPN. com tweets. Ingram is a better fit for the team, but many in the front office are enamored with Simmons’ star potential, Ford adds.
  • The Suns held a workout on Wednesday for Nikola Jovanovic (USC), Codi Miller-McIntyre (Wake Forest), Adam Smith (Georgia Tech) and Caleb Swanigan (Purdue), the team announced.
  • Working out for the Kings today will be Josh Hagins (Arkansas Little Rock), Gabe York (Arizona), Brannen Greene (Kansas), Max Hooper (Oakland), Mike Bryson (UC Santa Barbara) and Jordan Loveridge (Utah), the team relayed.
  • Mirza Teletovic is expected to be in high demand this summer as an unrestricted free agent, but the power forward said that the hiring of Earl Watson as head coach significantly increases the chances that he will re-sign with the Suns, Matt Petersen of relays.
  • The Lakers may entertain dealing away the No. 2 overall pick in this year’s draft, but doing so may compromise the team’s current plan build around its young core, Mark Medina of The Los Angeles Daily News writes. The scribe adds that Los Angeles will have ample opportunities to add veterans via free agency instead, given its ample cap flexibility this summer.

Pacific Notes: Lakers, Suns, Kings, Warriors

A report this week from ESPN’s Chad Ford suggested that the Lakers are expected to make their lottery pick available in trade talks if it lands at No. 3, with the team seeking a “young veteran” in return. It remains to be seen how aggressive GM Mitch Kupchak and the Lakers will be in pursuing a potential trade, but Kevin Pelton of (Insider link) has looked into whether it would even be the best approach for the franchise, laying out the pros and cons for moving a top-three pick. In Pelton’s view, the Lakers “would be foolish to rule out” the possibility of trading that selection, but the club should be very careful about which veterans it targets — if the right player isn’t available, Los Angeles should simply hang onto the pick and use it.

Here’s more from around the Pacific:

  • The Suns won’t necessarily approach next month’s draft looking to address a specific position, but the team could use some help at the four, and as Paul Coro of The Arizona Republic details, it might make sense for Phoenix to use one of its two potential lottery picks on a power forward.
  • In a separate Arizona Republic piece, Coro breaks down the prospects who interviewed with the Suns at last week’s combine in Chicago. Teams are permitted to talk to up to 20 players for 30 minutes apiece, and Coro has the full list of the 20 prospects who met with Phoenix.
  • As Jason Jones of The Sacramento Bee writes, the debate over whether the Kings will use a first-round pick on a point guard takes place on an annual basis, and this year is no exception. Jones examines whether Sacramento might have a chance to nab Providence’s Kris Dunn, or whether it would make sense for the Kings to move down and pick a point guard later in the first round.
  • The Warriors are still alive in the postseason, but that doesn’t mean they’re not partially focused on the draft as well. According to Rusty Simmons of The San Francisco Chronicle (Twitter link), Golden State is bringing in prospects Josh Adams, Nick Faust, Brannen Greene, Max Hooper, Fred VanVleet, and David Walker for a pre-draft workout.