Othyus Jeffers

Qualifying Offers: Monday

Teams must decide today whether to tender qualifying offers to their players eligible for restricted free agency or lose the right to match offers from other teams. We’ll round up all of today’s qualifying offer decisions here:

  • The Pacers declined to tender a qualifying offer to Lavoy Allen, according to Candace Buckner of the Indianapolis Star (Twitter link). Still, there’s mutual interest in a new deal, Buckner adds (on Twitter).
  • The Hawks extended a qualifying offer to Mike Scott, notes Mark Deeks of ShamSports (on Twitter).
  • No surprise here: Chandler Parsons got his QO from the Rockets, tweets Mark Deeks of ShamSports.
  • The Pacers won’t extend a QO to Evan Turner, writes Jeff Zillgitt of USA Today.
  • Kevin Seraphin officially got his qualifying offer from the Wizards, tweets Mark Deeks of ShamSports.com.
  • As expected, the Warriors won’t extend a QO to Jordan Crawford, according to Rusty Simmons of the San Francisco Chronicle (on Twitter).
  • The Hawks have extended a qualifying offer to Shelvin Mack, a source tells Jeff Goodman of ESPN.com (on Twitter).
  • The Bucks have told forward-center Ekpe Udoh he will not be tendered an offer thus making him an unrestricted free agent, a source told Marc J. Spears of Yahoo (on Twitter).
  • The Grizzlies have passed on making a qualifying offer to Ed Davis, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports (Twitter link). Davis was reportedly a favorite of former CEO Jason Levien, but with Zach Randolph having agreed to an extension, it appears that Davis isn’t quite as highly valued in Memphis as he once was. His qualifying offer would have been worth $4,268,609, a slightly smaller amount than he was originally in line for, as I explained.
  • No shock here, but the Pistons extended a qualifying offer to Greg Monroe, tweets Vincent Goodwill of The Detroit News, preserving their right to match offers for the fifth-rated player in the Hoops Rumors Free Agent Power Rankings. The qualifying offer is worth nearly $5.5MM, but he’ll command much more than that.
  • The Pelicans will not give Darius Miller a qualifying offer, reports John Reid of The Times Picayune. The offer would have been worth more than $1.115MM.
  • The Spurs have tendered a qualifying offer to Aron Baynes, notes Jeff McDonald of the San Antonio Express-News (on Twitter). It’s worth more than $1.115MM, the same amount as Miller’s would have been.
  • The Knicks have elected not to make a qualifying offer to Toure’ Murry, according to Marc Stein of ESPN.com (Twitter link). They’d like to re-sign him nonetheless, Stein adds in a second tweet, but other teams have interest, USA Today’s Jeff Zillgitt says (on Twitter). The offer would have been worth more than $1.016MM.
  • Othyus Jeffers and Robbie Hummel won’t receive qualifying offers from the Wolves, the team announced (on Twitter). The offers would have been for amounts slightly greater than $1.148MM and $1.016MM, respectively.

Timberwolves Sign Othyus Jeffers

1:06pm: The team has formally announced the signing, via Twitter. It covers the rest of this season, according to the team, but there’s no mention of it extending into 2014/15.

11:17am: The signing should take place this afternoon, tweets Jerry Zgoda of the Star Tribune.

8:45am: The Timberwolves are close to signing Othyus Jeffers, reports Marc Stein of ESPN.com (Twitter link). The 28-year-old has been playing with Minnesota’s shared D-League affiliate, the Iowa Energy. The Wolves appear set to bring aboard the shooting guard to fill the roster spot vacated when the team waived A.J. Price last week. Stein refers to the pending arrangement as a 10-day deal, though it would be tantamount to a signing for the rest of the 2013/14, since there are fewer than 10 days remaining in the regular season.

Jeffers was with Minnesota for the preseason before the team cut him prior to opening night. He had a brief stint with the Spurs on a 10-day contract in late January, appearing in four games and scoring seven points in a total of 34 minutes before San Antonio terminated his deal a couple of days early to bring in Shannon Brown. The 6’5″ rebounding ace has spent the lion’s share of his time this season with Iowa of the D-League, scoring 20.9 points and grabbing 9.9 boards in 37.6 minutes per game.

The timing of the Wolves’ move to waive Price was odd, and it was reportedly unrelated to the legal troubles of forward Dante Cunningham. I speculated at the time of the move that the Wolves had their eyes on a young prospect they would sign to a multiyear deal, but given Stein’s assertion that it’ll be just a short-term contract for Jeffers, it seems Minnesota is instead merely plugging gaps on its roster. Chase Budinger and Shabazz Muhammad will likely miss the final six games of the season, perhaps necessitating the addition of another healthy body.

Othyus Jeffers To Rejoin D-League

Recent Spurs 10-day signee Othyus Jeffers will return to the D-League’s Iowa Energy, tweets Shams Charania of RealGM.com. The Spurs terminated their deal with Jeffers a day early this past weekend so they could sign Shannon Brown. Jeffers has spent part of five of the last six seasons with the Energy, who retain his D-League rights.

The 28-year-old appeared in four games and even started one for injury-hit San Antonio, taking just five shots and scoring seven points in 34 total minutes. Jeffers has otherwise experienced his best season in the D-League this year, setting career highs of 22.8 points and 11.4 rebounds per game.

Charania suggests part of Jeffers’ motivation for heading back to the D-League is his desire to stay on the radar of NBA teams. Given his extensive D-League resume and lack of international experience, the move is no surprise.

Spurs Sign Brown To 10-Day, Release Jeffers

The Spurs have signed Shannon Brown to a 10-day contract, per a team press release. Othyus Jeffers has been let go in conjunction with the addition of Brown. Brown figures to add depth to their depleted guard rotation. The Spurs have suffered a litany of injuries lately, with Kawhi Leonard, Manu Ginobili, Danny Green, and Tiago Splitter all missing extended time. Brown has played for five teams over his nine-year career, and hadn’t played anywhere this year after being traded to the Wizards from the Suns, and promptly released. He was reportedly considering joining a team in China over continuing his NBA career, but has opted for this route in San Antonio, where coach Gregg Popovich has consistently given role players opportunities to maximize their skills and contribute.

Jeffers’ 10-day contract wasn’t set to expire until this coming Sunday night, as our 10-day contract tracker shows. The 28-year-old shooting guard has struggled to stay in the league, spending more time in the D-League over his six-year career than on NBA teams.

Odds & Ends: Young, Draft, Spurs, Celtics

Thaddeus Young‘s name figures to be in plenty of rumors between now and the February 20th trade deadline. “There is not a GM in the league who wouldn’t want Thaddeus Young on their team,” an NBA executive tells Keith Pompey of the Philadelphia Inquirer. Still, Young’s contract, with average salaries of more than $9MM through 2015/16, remains a turn-off for would-be trade partners, Pompey writes. The Inquirer scribe takes a stab at sketching the Sixers roster for 2014/15, concluding that a turnaround is still a ways off. Here’s more on a couple of prospects who could be in Philly next year, as well as more from around the NBA:

  • Several NBA scouts are leaning toward regarding Indiana’s Noah Vonleh as a better power forward prospect than Kentucky’s Julius Randle, according to Chad Ford of ESPN.com, who debates the matter with colleague Kevin Pelton in an Insider-only piece.
  • The Spurs wanted someone who could guard small forwards after learning Kawhi Leonard would miss the next three or four weeks, and Gregg Popovich says that led them to sign Othyus Jeffers, observes Mike Monroe of the San Antonio Express-News.
  • A splintered Clippers front office kept the team from trading for Kevin Garnett at the deadline last year, and that prompted the Celtics to draw back from discussions with the Nets about Paul Pierce, sources tell Sean Deveney of The Sporting News. The C’s would have been better off had those deals gone down than they are with the package they obtained from the Nets this summer, Deveney surmises.
  • Doc Rivers stuck up for Tom Thibodeau, his former assistant coach, saying that he didn’t think “any right-minded organization” would allow him to leave, as Joe Cowley of the Chicago Sun-Times notes. Rumors have suggested the Bulls might let their coach out of his contract so he can take over the Knicks.
  • Keith Schlosser of Ridiculous Upside wonders what more Pierre Jackson must do to convince New Orleans to sign him. The Pelicans hold the NBA rights to the D-League’s leading scorer, but they’ve given Jackson permission to seek a trade.

Spurs Sign Othyus Jeffers To 10-Day Deal

3:44pm: The Spurs have officially announced the signing.

FRIDAY, 10:34am: Coach Gregg Popovich says the team will sign Jeffers to a 10-day contract today or Saturday, depending on how quickly he can travel to join the team (Twitter link).

THURSDAY, 3:43pm: Jeffers and the team are on track to finalize their deal later today or early Friday, tweets Jeff McDonald of the San Antonio Express-News, relaying the news from fellow Express-News reporter Mike Monroe. The team waived Thomas earlier, clearing the roster spot necessary for Jeffers to sign.

11:07am: The banged-up Spurs have set their sights on inking D-Leaguer Othyus Jeffers to a 10-day contract, tweets Marc Stein of ESPN.com. A signing would require the team to waive someone, since San Antonio is at the 15-man roster limit. Kawhi Leonard broke his right hand last night, joining Tiago Splitter and Danny Green among the injured Spurs.

Jeffers, a 6’5″ shooting guard, has averaged 22.8 points and 11.4 rebounds per game in 22 contests for the Iowa Energy this season after spending camp with the Timberwolves. The two-year NBA veteran last appeared in the league during the 2010/11 season with the Wizards. He also got into a single game with the Spurs that season while on a 10-day contract.

Power forward Malcolm Thomas would seem the most logical choice for a cut. He made his debut for the Spurs on Sunday, even though he’s been under contract with the team since December 3rd. He’s spent much of his time with San Antonio on four separate assignments to the D-League.

Western Notes: Westbrook, Kobe, Carney, Rosas

There’s some auspicious news for the Thunder on opening night, as it appears Russell Westbrook could be back as early as two weeks from now, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports. The Thunder originally projected he’d miss at least the first month of the season. Here’s more from the West:

T-Wolves Cut Othyus Jeffers, Lorenzo Brown

The Timberwolves have made a pair of roster cuts, releasing Othyus Jeffers and Lorenzo Brown, according to the club (via Twitter). Minnesota will still need to make at least one more move, as the team is now carrying 16 players.

Jeffers, who appeared in 31 total games for the Jazz, Spurs, and Wizards from 2010 to 2011, averaged 14.7 PPG and 5.4 RPG in 33 contests for the D-League’s Iowa Energy last season before inking a camp deal with the T-Wolves this fall. Brown, a point guard out of North Carolina State, was selected 52nd overall this past June by the Wolves. Minnesota will no longer hold his NBA rights, but could protect his D-League rights for the Energy. Both players were believed to be on fully non-guaranteed contracts.

As Jerry Zgoda of the Star Tribune tweets, A.J. Price, Robbie Hummel, and Chris Johnson remain on the roster bubble. Price looks like a good bet to earn a regular season roster spot, so the decision may come down to Hummel and his non-guaranteed contract vs. Johnson’s guaranteed minimum salary deal.

T-Wolves Considering Richard Hamilton?

The Timberwolves are currently carrying 18 players, including 14 on guaranteed deals, but the team’s regular-season roster could still include an outside addition. According to Nate Sandell and Darren Wolfson of ESPN 1500 Twin Cities, president Flip Saunders continues to keep an eye on free agents and possible trade targets in search of potential options.

“We’re looking at all the players we have and where are they going to fit in,” said head coach Rick Adelman. “It’s not just the guys who are here. Flip is constantly talking to people around the league who are evaluating everything. I think it’s something that is a process that you go through, and you make that decision sometime next week.”

One player the Wolves are considering is Richard Hamilton, who remains on the free agent market after being released by the Bulls over the summer. Wolfson reports that the idea of signing Hamilton has been “floated among the Wolves front office personnel.” The veteran guard has ties to Saunders, having played for him in Detroit, and would provide depth on the wing for a club that will be without Chase Budinger to start the season.

If the T-Wolves decide not to add any outside players, camp invitees Othyus Jeffers and A.J. Price look like strong bets to make the team, according to the ESPN 1500 report. While the Wolves have 14 players on guaranteed contracts, Chris Johnson‘s roster spot could be in danger, which would leave two openings for non-guaranteed players. Minnesota’s other two camp invitees, Robbie Hummel and Lorenzo Brown, may end up playing for the club’s D-League affiliate in Iowa.

Western Notes: Blair, Durant, ‘Wolves

With Brandan Wright out indefinitely after a left shoulder injury, free agent signee DeJuan Blair, is learning both the power forward and center assignments with the Mavs, writes Eddie Sefko of the Dallas Morning News.

The 6’7″ Blair is under-sized for a center, but as he told Sefko, “I’ve been playing five all my life against 7-footers.” Blair was largely relegated to the Spurs bench the last season. He only started 16 games and played only 76 minutes during their run to the Finals last year. So look for him to be extra motivated if given a significant opportunity in Dallas.

Here’s more from around the West tonight:

  • As mentioned previously, the Oklahoman’s Darnell Mayberry spoke with Thunder coach Scott Brooks about Kevin Durant‘s minutes with Russell Westbrook expected to miss the first quarter of the season.
  • Assuming Durant appears in at least 79 games this season, at 38 minutes a night, that would have him playing over 3,000 regular season minutes for the fourth time in five seasons. Ben Wallace in 2004/05 was the last player to win a title after playing over 3,000 minutes during the regular season.
  • But it’s a workload Brooks plans to manage with off days and practice time and Durant appears up to the challenge, as long as it helps them win.
  • Timberwolves coach Rick Adelman is looking for more continuity from his starters in preseason despite the second straight game without Kevin Martin, he tells  Jerry Zgoda of the Star-Tribune.
  • But, Zgoda tweets that Adelman has no idea if a week of rest will get Martin back on the court, though he certainly hopes so.
  • Zgoda goes on to say that Othyus Jeffers, A.J. Price, Robbie Hummel and Lorenzo Brown are battling for what will likely be two spots when the team waives Chris Johnson.
  • But Adelman says the Wolves could add players cut from other training camps once teams pare down their rosters in the final week of preseason.
  • Adelman is also happy former ‘Wolves assistant Bill Bayno was hired as lead assistant for the Raptors (Twitter).