Oshae Brissett

Atlantic Notes: Celtics, Jeffries, Diakite, Walker, Dinwiddie

The Celtics’ bench has turned into a strength during their current hot streak, Jay King of The Athletic writes.

Over the last nine games, Payton Pritchard has averaged 13.9 points and 5.8 assists per game while shooting 47.0% from the field. Meanwhile, Sam Hauser has made 21 three-pointers over his past three games entering Monday’s action. Al Horford, Luke Kornet, Xavier Tillman and Oshae Brissett have also delivered impactful performances.

We have more from the Atlantic Division:

  • DaQuan Jeffries’ contract with the Knicks, which he signed on Monday, runs through the end of this season with a team option for 2024/25, Fred Katz of The Athletic tweets. Mamadi Diakite’s contract with the Knicks, also signed on Monday, runs through next season too, but the 2024/25 salary is non-guaranteed rather than a team option, Katz adds (Twitter link).
  • Lonnie Walker‘s minutes have dropped since Kevin Ollie was named the Nets’ interim coach but he’s trying to keep a positive attitude, according to NetsDaily.com. “I don’t think it negatively affects me. You might have your ups and downs, your days where you might not feel as much,” Walker said. “But for the most part, I got a great family around me that really supports me and I understand that there’s light at the end of the tunnel.” Walker will be an unrestricted free agent after the season.
  • Spencer Dinwiddie was given very little leeway by former Nets coach Jacque Vaughn before he was dealt and later joined the Lakers, according to Shams Charania. Speaking on the Run It Back program (video link), Charania said Dinwiddie “was essentially told in Brooklyn: No pick and rolls, no isolations.”

Trade Rumors: Suns, Biggest Needs, Warriors, Lewis, More

Instead of focusing on acquiring a true point guard for their roster, the Suns are more interested in trying to bring in an athletic wing, NBA on TNT’s Chris Haynes said during a broadcast (via Inside The Suns).

A lot of people will point to a point guard, but in talking with the Suns they believe that with Devin Booker, Kevin Durant and Bradley Beal, they feel like they need the ball in their hands. They feel like they don’t need another point guard that’s going to take the ball away [from their stars],” Haynes said during the broadcast.

It’s unclear what specific players the Suns are targeting but Haynes expects the market to heat up in the near future, which could provide some clarity.

Obviously around this time of year, this is when things start to get serious,” Haynes said. “Right now teams are posturing — there’s not a whole lot of sellers right now, but I expect things to change over the next week or so. I think things will really get serious.

We have more trade rumors from around the league:

  • Staffers from The Athletic pooled together to break down what all 30 teams in the league should be targeting at the trade deadline. The article mostly focuses on archetypes of players, with Doug Haller agreeing with the notion the Suns need another perimeter defender. Some writers gave specific trade targets for teams, with Andrew Schlect identifying Utah’s Kelly Olynyk and Brooklyn’s Royce O’Neale as two targets who make sense for the Thunder.
  • In the same article, The Athletic’s Anthony Slater writes the Warriors have “poked around” the center market and could dangle Chris Paul‘s expiring salary. Slater also believes Andrew Wiggins is more likely to be traded at the deadline than Jonathan Kuminga.
  • A trade involving Pelicans guard Kira Lewis Jr. to avoid the luxury tax feels “inevitable,” according to The Athletic’s William Guillory. While that’s speculation, it has been obvious for months that such a move makes sense. If the Pelicans do move on from Lewis, they should target shooting in return, Guillory writes. Otherwise, he expects New Orleans to have a relatively quiet deadline unless something changes in the next few weeks.
  • Some recent acquisitions haven’t panned out the way teams may have thought when signing or trading for them, and those teams could look to move said players. The Athletic’s Jay King and Jared Weiss write the Celtics could use another option on the wing since Oshae Brissett hasn’t taken a stranglehold on a rotation spot. Signing Shake Milton hasn’t panned out for the Timberwolves‘ bench, Jon Krawczynski writes, and the team needs more bench scoring as a result. Other recent acquisitions who haven’t quite played up to expectations and could be on the move or supplanted, per The Athletic’s staffers, include the ClippersP.J. Tucker and Jock Landale of the Rockets.
  • The Wizards have a number of players who could appeal to contending teams, according to The Athletic’s Josh Robbins, including Tyus Jones, Delon Wright, Danilo Gallinari and Mike Muscala. Robbins writes the goal in any trade, along with obtaining first-round picks, should be to get young prospects who haven’t been able to crack rotations on other teams.

Celtics Notes: Trade Exception, Roster, Queta, Brissett

Speaking to Jay King of The Athletic and other reporters this week, Celtics president of basketball operations Brad Stevens suggested that the team’s trade options at this season’s deadline will be limited, since Boston only has six players earning north of $5MM this season and all of them are starters or key rotation pieces.

As a result, the Celtics’ $6.2MM traded player exception is “really the No. 1 tool” the club has at its disposal as it explores the trade market, according to Stevens, who cautions that the exception is “not big.”

“It’s a small number of people (who would fit into the exception),” Stevens said, per King. “A lot of the people that are in that (salary tier) were signed to minimums or smaller contracts, or are on their rookie scale deals that teams aren’t exactly excited to move on from yet. So it’s a very small group of people, but we’re going to exhaust it, we’re going to look at it.”

Players whose salaries don’t fit into that trade exception may not be realistic trade targets for the Celtics.

For instance, in the latest episode of his No Cap Room podcast (Twitter video link), Jake Fischer of Yahoo Sports mentions Raptors big man Chris Boucher as a player Boston has liked for a while. But without giving up one of their top six players, the Celtics would have to send out at least five smaller salaries for matching purposes in a deal for Boucher and his $11.75MM salary, which likely isn’t viable.

Here’s more on the Celtics:

  • While Stevens didn’t rule out the possibility of acquiring another big man, he said he’s been happy with what the Celtics have gotten from their frontcourt players and would be more inclined to add one more big wing who could crack the rotation or simply provide depth, according to King. “And I think that could be from within,” Stevens said, “and I also think that we’ll continue to monitor free agency and trades.”
  • If the Celtics do add another frontcourt player, they’d want someone who would happy to accept a very limited role, according to Stevens: “What you look at is guys that can play, guys that can add value but, like I said last year, don’t need to play. They are over themselves, and I think that that’s important. That’s what we have right now, and we’ve gotten obviously good play out of … great play out of Kristaps (Porzingis), I think Al (Horford)‘s been good. I think Luke (Kornet) and (Neemias Queta), when called upon, have both added great value.”
  • Queta, who is on a two-way contract, has been a pleasant surprise off the bench and could be a candidate later in the season to get a promotion to the standard roster. However, he’s still eligible to play in 37 more games as a two-way player, and it doesn’t sound like the Celtics are in any rush to fill their final 15-man roster spot by converting his contract, per Brian Robb of MassLive.com. “We have discussions every day about how we’re going to move forward with those other spots on our roster,” Stevens said. “We have one open spot right now. You have to carry 14. I think it’s helpful to go into a trade deadline or whatever with a little bit of flexibility from a roster standpoint.”
  • Fifth-year wing Oshae Brissett hasn’t played a significant role off the bench for the Celtics this season, but he has gotten more opportunities as of late, including 20 minutes of action in Saturday’s victory over Indiana. Brissett had eight points and eight rebounds against his former team, notes Dustin Dopirak of The Indianapolis Star. “I was extremely happy for him, just building off of what he did (Friday) night at Utah,” Jayson Tatum said. “I know (the win over the Jazz) was a blowout, but I can only imagine a team trading you and you get to come back and you want to play good against them, you want to beat them. He was a big part of that success we had in the fourth quarter, just creating second and third chance opportunities. That was big for us.”

Celtics Notes: Brissett, Pritchard, Hauser, Brown

Oshae Brissett has mostly been out of the rotation since signing with the Celtics this summer, but he took advantage of an opportunity to play on Friday night, writes Adam Himmelsbach of The Boston Globe. With Al Horford, Kristaps Porzingis and Luke Kornet all sidelined by injuries, the 6’7″ Brissett was called on to help protect the rim in small-ball lineups. He responded by making all four of his shots and scoring 11 points in nearly 16 minutes. He had just 14 points all season before Friday’s game.

“It’s tough, wanting to win and wanting to do so well and trying to play perfect,” Brissett said. “You can’t really do that as a basketball player, especially in limited minutes. You’ve just got to be yourself and play a little free. It’s tough, again, because you want to do the right thing so bad. But, at the end of the day, it’s basketball and I’ve been playing basketball for a long time.”

Himmelsbach adds that Brissett has remained focused while he’s been out of the lineup, studying the game from the bench to identify ways he can help the team. Brissett also receives regular guidance from coach Joe Mazzulla, who reminded him that his shooting in a game two years ago with Indiana sparked the Celtics’ interest.

“I know what I can bring to the table, and that’s energy and being excited to be out there with these guys,” Brissett added. “And any given night I can get out there, I’m just going to do that.”

There’s more from Boston:

  • Jaylen Brown was dealing with hypertension in his right knee, but he was determined to play in what is becoming an intense rivalry with Orlando, per Brian Robb of MassLive. The Magic had won their previous four games against the Celtics, including an in-season tournament contest in which they ran up the score in the final minutes to help with point differential. “In my opinion, for us, I think one we had a bunch of guys out and were on a back-to-back versus a team that’s been kicking our ass the last four or five times we played,” Brown said. “I think this was the biggest game to me so far.”
  • Payton Pritchard is showing the Celtics that they’re better off keeping him than using him as a trade chip, Robb observes in a separate story. Pritchard, who scored 21 points in 28 minutes on Friday, and Sam Hauser have become the leaders of a bench unit that is exceeding expectations. “Like I said, those guys since day one,” Mazzulla said. “I coached them both in Summer League, so I’ve always known they were going to be great rotation players, and I had full confidence in them last year, and full confidence in them this year.”
  • Brown, a member of the NBPA’s executive committee, endorsed Andre Iguodala‘s recent ascension to interim executive director, according to Gary Washburn of The Boston Globe, who notes that Brown indicated he may also have interest in leading the players union after he retires from basketball.

Celtics Notes: Brissett, Brown, White, Rebounding

Oshae Brissett swung the momentum in the Celtics‘ favor and made a strong case for a rotation spot in Friday’s win over the Heat, writes Adam Himmelsbach of The Boston Globe. The Eastern Conference Finals rematch saw Boston trailing 26-13 when Brissett entered the game in the first quarter. He pounded the offensive glass and threw down an impressive dunk that cut the lead to three points within about five minutes.

“He was the sole reason that we got back into the game, and I told him that,” Jayson Tatum said. “He came right in, and we were kind of flat. His energy, his offensive rebounding, giving us second- and third-chance opportunities was big. And that’s his job. For him to come do that, to not play last game and come in today and give us the spark to turn the game around was huge. And that’s what I love about our team.”

Brissett signed a two-year, minimum-salary contract with Boston this summer after spending the past three years in Indiana. He wasn’t used in the season opener, but coach Joe Mazzulla turned to him early on Friday to provide a spark. Brissett understands that his minutes will vary from game to game, so he’s trying to stay ready.

“We know that we’re going to be important throughout a lot of these games of the season,” he said of himself and his fellow reserves. “And then when it comes to playoff time, we’re going to be relied on, even if it’s for a little bit. Just go in there and just do what we do and do what we’ve learned all of training camp. So we take every practice like that and we’ve taken it really serious and going up against starters and it’s making them better. And it’s also making us better and more confident in ourselves knowing that any time we do get thrown in, we’ve just got to play the same way.”

There’s more from Boston:

  • Jaylen Brown is prepared to fill some of the leadership void created when Marcus Smart was traded to Memphis, per Gary Washburn of The Boston Globe. Brown, now the longest-tenured member of the team, plans to take a more vocal approach than in past years. “I’m comfortable being in that (leadership) role,” he said. “I think at times I’ve wanted to be more in that role, but we had a lot of cooks in the kitchen so sometimes your voice is redundant.”
  • Derrick White showed an increased level of aggressiveness in closing out the win over Miami, observes Matt Vautour of MassLive. White scored 14 points in the fourth quarter and attacked the basket when he got the opportunity instead of deferring to his star teammates. “I’ve been an advocate for D-White since he joined the team three years ago,” Tatum said. “I tried to tell him to be more aggressive. To score. To attack. To make plays. He’s at his best when he’s being aggressive.”
  • With the Celtics adding size in the offseason, Mazzulla is placing a greater emphasis on offensive rebounding, according to Souichi Terada of MassLive. It paid off Friday as Boston scored 23 second-chance points and grabbed 36% of the available offensive boards.

And-Ones: Dybantsa, Weatherspoon, Breakout Candidates, More

A.J. Dybantsa, a 6’8″ wing from Massachusetts and one of the top high school prospects in the country, intends to reclassify to the 2025 recruiting class, as Jeff Borzello of ESPN.com writes. Dybantsa had previously been the No. 1 player in ESPN’s 2026 recruiting rankings. Now, he becomes the favorite to be selected first overall in the 2026 NBA draft, according to Borzello.

As Borzello explains, Dybantsa, Cooper Flagg, and Cameron Boozer are widely considered the best high school prospects in the country. When ESPN asked 20 college coaches and NBA evaluators to rank the trio this summer, Dybantsa earned seven first-place votes and placed second behind Flagg, who is the frontrunner to be the top pick in the 2025 draft.

“Dybantsa is just the most complete,” one coach told ESPN. “Scores at all three levels. Super athletic. He’s the No. 1 pick in the NBA draft whenever he goes.”

Here are a few more odds and ends from around the league:

  • Former Pelicans assistant Teresa Weatherspoon will be the next head coach of the WNBA’s Chiacgo Sky, reports Shams Charania of The Athletic (Twitter link). The former WNBA star was an assistant in New Orleans for four seasons before the team parted ways with her in June.
  • In John Schuhmann’s general manager poll, two players received more votes than Magic forward Franz Wagner for this season’s top breakout candidate. However, Wagner sits atop the list compiled by Michael Scotto of HoopsHype, who spoke to 25 executives around the NBA and has shared the top nine vote-getters. Pistons guard Cade Cunningham and Rockets guard Jalen Green round out Scotto’s top three.
  • John Hollinger of The Athletic lists a dozen under-the-radar NBA players whom he expects to have a real impact this season, including Celtics wing Oshae Brissett, Nuggets forward Peyton Watson, Thunder guard Vasilije Micic, and Pelicans forward Naji Marshall.
  • The Capital City Go-Go have traded the returning rights to Isaiah Mucius to the Delaware Blue Coats along with a 2024 first-round pick and 2023 second-round pick in the G League draft. In exchange, the Sixers‘ G League affiliate has sent Michael Foster Jr.‘s returning rights to the Wizards‘ affiliate, the Go-Go announced today (via Twitter).

World Cup Notes: Murray, Brissett, Schröder, Haliburton, Luka

It’s still unclear whether or not Nuggets guard Jamal Murray will play for Team Canada when the World Cup tips off later this month, according to Michael Grange of Sportsnet.ca, who reports that sources in Murray’s camp say the matter remains undecided.

Due to his championship run with Denver that extended into mid-June, the expectation was that Murray would be brought along slowly after reporting to the Canadian national team. But he’ll likely have to play in at least one or two of the team’s pre-World Cup exhibition games in order for Canada to feel comfortable having him suit up in Indonesia, Grange writes.

The Canadian team is currently in Germany for a series of three tune-up contests, then will travel to Spain to play two more exhibition games before continuing on to Jakarta. Murray didn’t accompany the team to Germany.

Here are a few more World Cup notes:

  • Within his Sportsnet.ca story, Grange says that new Celtics forward Oshae Brissett experienced some tightness during Team Canada’s practices and was held out as a precautionary measure, but didn’t suffer a knee injury as some reports suggested. Brissett simply wants to play it safe and focus on getting ready for training camp with a new team.
  • Raptors guard Dennis Schröder, a member of the German national team, is still recovering from an Achilles issue that he dealt with at the end of last season and isn’t 100%, he told reporters (story via BasketNews.com). However, he believes he’ll be ready to go for the World Cup.
  • Joe Vardon of The Athletic takes a closer look at the role that Pacers guard Tyrese Haliburton is playing for Team USA and the feedback Haliburton got from Chris Paul, who visited the club’s training camp in Las Vegas. “The way he plays just empowers everybody,” Austin Reaves said of his backcourt mate, lauding Haliburton’s ability to get everyone else involved.
  • Mavericks star Luka Doncic, who will play for Slovenia in the World Cup, already looks to be in midseason form. He poured in 34 points to go along with 14 assists and 13 rebounds in an exhibition win over Montenegro on Tuesday, as The Dallas Morning News relays.

World Cup Notes: Jackson, Reaves, Murray, Bogdanovic

Grizzlies big man Jaren Jackson Jr. was named the standout of training camp in a straw poll of Team USA players taken by Joe Vardon of The Athletic. The American World Cup team wrapped up camp on Sunday in advance of tonight’s first exhibition game, and Jackson made a strong impression on his teammates.

“Jaren, particularly (Saturday), his energy and the way he went to the glass and went to the foul line every other possession,” Jalen Brunson said. “He was just really a force (in the Saturday scrimmage against the Select Team).”

As its best rim protector and most versatile big man, Jackson will be important to Team USA’s chances of capturing a gold medal. He’s looking forward to the international competition, noting that it’s conducive to his style of play, which often gets him into foul trouble in the NBA.

“It’s more physical in FIBA,” Jackson said. “You can use your chest a lot more. You can’t really use your hands, so that’s the similarity (with the NBA), but you can use your chest in FIBA just to get him off you or whatever the case. The defense gets a lot of benefit of the doubt, for the most part.”

There’s more World Cup news to pass along:

  • Even after a breakout season, Austin Reaves was surprised to receive an invitation to join the Team USA roster, per Steve Carp of The Sporting Tribune. Entering the league as an undrafted player, Reaves doesn’t have the credentials of his more heralded teammates, but his performance with the Lakers caught the attention of USA Basketball managing director Grant Hill. “I was shocked,” Reaves said. “As a kid, you watch (USA Basketball) and you fantasize taking that last shot to win the gold medal. Now I’m here and with a chance to contribute and be part of it. It’s a tremendous honor personally and to also represent the Lakers.”
  • Nuggets guard Jamal Murray will miss Team Canada’s exhibition games in Europe as his status for the World Cup is evaluated, tweets Michael Grange of Sportsnet.ca. The Canadians will play three times this week in Germany and twice next week in Spain before the actual tournament begins August 25. Canada will also be without newly signed Warriors guard Cory Joseph, who experienced an issue with his back during training camp, Kassius Robertson, who will report to his new EuroLeague team instead, and Oshae Brissett, who is rehabbing an injury (Twitter link).
  • Hawks guard Bogdan Bogdanovic tells Eurohoops that he’s optimistic about Serbia’s chances even though it won’t have NBA Finals MVP Nikola Jokic or new Thunder guard Vasilije Micic. “Given that it’s a relatively young team, we’ve managed well,” Bogdanovic said. “… We play a fast and attractive style of basketball.”

Celtics Notes: Brown, Brissett, Banton, Madar, Begarin

The trade kicker on Jaylen Brown‘s new super-max extension with the Celtics is worth either 7% of his remaining salary or $7MM, whichever is lesser, per Jared Weiss of The Athletic.

Brown’s trade kicker won’t be relevant until at least the 2025/26 season, since a player is ineligible to receive a full trade bonus if it would push his salary beyond his maximum. He’ll be earning the max (35% of the cap) in ’24/25, but not necessarily in seasons beyond that, since the cap could increase at a greater rate than his contract does.

Brown will receive 8% annual raises, so if the cap rises by 10% per year, he’d be earning below the max in later years of the extension. His trade kicker would ensure he earns as much as $7MM in extra money if he’s dealt at that point.

Here’s more on the Celtics:

  • After signing the richest contract in NBA history, Brown is feeling more pressure to use his wealth to make a “tangible impact” off the court rather than to win a championship on it, as Weiss details within the same Athletic story. “The first thing that came to mind is like ‘Dang, look what all you can do with it now,'” Brown said. “Like how much you can invest into your community, what you can build with it, what you can change, how many lives you can touch, and what you can do in real-time.”
  • As long as the Celtics are at full strength, Brian Robb of MassLive doesn’t expect there to be too many minutes available for newcomers like Oshae Brissett, Dalano Banton, and Jordan Walsh. Of the three, Brissett probably has the best chance to earn a rotation role, according to Robb, who believes Banton will be more of a defensive specialist and developmental project.
  • Within the same mailbag, Robb writes that the Celtics remain high on draft-and-stash players Yam Madar (the No. 47 overall pick in 2020) and Juhann Begarin (No. 45 in 2021) despite not feeling that either is NBA-ready yet. Robb speculates that those former second-rounders could be logical additions to fill back-end roster spots on the cheap in future seasons as super-max deals for Brown and Jayson Tatum hit the team’s books.
  • Longtime voice of the Celtics Mike Gorman will retire after the 2023/24 season, per NBC Sports Boston. The veteran play-by-play man has been calling Celtics games since 1981. “Celtics Nation… you are the best and there is no other group of dedicated fans I would have chosen to take this ride with,” Gorman said as part of a larger statement. “I very much look forward to my final season with all of you — and thank you again for allowing me to be a part of your lives.”

And-Ones: Team Canada, Ownership Stakes, Cap Room, Giles

While a Team USA roster led by Jalen Brunson, Anthony Edwards, Brandon Ingram, and Mikal Bridges will enter the 2023 World Cup as the frontrunner next month, Team Canada’s initial 18-man group features some real star power.

The extended roster, announced this week by Canada Basketball, is headlined by Nuggets guard Jamal Murray, Thunder guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Thunder forward Luguentz Dort, Knicks forward RJ Barrett, and Rockets forward Dillon Brooks.

It also features five other players currently on NBA rosters: veteran big men Dwight Powell (Mavericks) and Kelly Olynyk (Jazz), guards Nickeil Alexander-Walker (Timberwolves) and Cory Joseph (Warriors), and forward Oshae Brissett (Celtics). Purdue’s star center Zach Edey is on the roster too.

Team Canada will have to make a few cuts to get down to 12 players for the World Cup, and it’s possible some of the more notable names will drop out in order to focus on the NBA season. However, league sources tell Joe Vardon of The Athletic that Murray has reaffirmed his commitment to the team despite a lengthy postseason run with the Nuggets this spring.

Here are a few more odds and ends from around the basketball world:

  • The minimum stake that someone can own in an NBA franchise has been lowered, according to Mike Vorkunov of The Athletic, who says a minority shareholder can now control as little as 0.5% of a team, down from 1%.
  • A total of eight teams operated below the cap this offseason, having entered the league year with $277MM in combined cap room, per Yossi Gozlan of HoopsHype. As Gozlan outlines, over half of that league-wide cap space was used to accommodate trades or contract negotiations rather than free agent signings.
  • Sean Cunningham of FOX40 in Sacramento (video link) caught up with free agent big man Harry Giles to talk about the 25-year-old’s efforts to make it back into the NBA, as well as the new rule related to two-way contracts that will unofficially be named after him.