Richaun Holmes

Texas Notes: Spurs, Payne, Kleber, Holmes

Following the addition of No. 1 draft pick Victor Wembanyama to their roster, the Spurs appear to be taking a long-term approach to their future, writes Mike Finger of The San Antonio Express-News.

Finger observes that president/head coach Gregg Popovich, general manager Brian Wright, and CEO R.C. Buford opted to not sign a top free agent into cap space or use their significant future draft equity to trade for a veteran star, instead hoping to develop their current youth around Wembanyama and make bigger moves in the future.

There’s more out of the Lone Star State:

  • Newly acquired Spurs point guard Cameron Payne may not be long for San Antonio, writes Jeff McDonald of The San Antonio Express-News. McDonald notes that Payne and other new veteran personnel additions Reggie Bullock and Cedi Osman may eventually be offloaded by the team as it looks to build around Wembanyama.
  • Mavericks big man Maxi Kleber has opted out of playing for his native Germany in this summer’s FIBA World Cup, Brad Townsend of The Dallas Morning writes. In withdrawing from the competition, Kleber noted that it was “100% clear that I am not unreservedly welcome,” which Townsend considers a direct response to comments made by Team Germany point guard Dennis Schröder. Schröder seemed to take umbrage with Kleber not participating in EuroBasket competition in 2022. “Maxi wasn’t there last year,” Schröder said. “If you didn’t commit — that was actually the message for all of us — then you won’t be there next year either.” 
  • New Mavericks big man Richaun Holmes has resolved the lawsuit he filed against the parent company of the Sacramento Bee, writes Sam Stanton of The Bee. Holmes sued McClatchy Co. and Bee columnist Robin Epley for defamation after an op-ed column from Epley detailed damaging accusations from Holmes’ ex-wife Alexis. “We’re pleased the matter has now been resolved and Mr. Holmes is enthusiastic about a new chapter in his life as a father and basketball player,” his attorney Camille Vasquez said in a statement. According to Stanton, McClatchy and The Bee did not make any payment to Holmes as part of the settlement.

Mavs Notes: Draft Picks, Bogdanovic, McGee, Centers

The Mavericksacquisition of Grant Williams in a three-team sign-and-trade agreement with Boston and San Antonio was initially reported on July 5, but wasn’t officially completed until a week later. According to Tim Cato of The Athletic, that delay was by design, as the three clubs agreed to keep the deal unofficial through Tuesday evening to give everyone a chance to explore expanding it further. No opportunities materialized, so the teams completed the trade as planned on Wednesday.

The Mavs were – and remain – willing to immediately flip the 2025 and 2028 second-rounders they acquired from San Antonio in order to further upgrade their roster, but they’ve been “incredibly cautious” about trading their own 2027 first-round pick, a team source tells Cato.

Because Dallas has already moved its 2029 first-rounder, it would be difficult to put any protections on its 2027 first-rounder due to the Stepien rule, which prohibits a team from leaving itself without a first-round selection in any two consecutive future drafts.

If the Mavs were to trade their 2027 pick, it would have to either be unprotected or turn into a second-rounder (or multiple second-rouders) if it were to fall into its protected range in ’27, since it couldn’t be rolled over to 2028. An unprotected pick would be an extremely valuable trade chip, whereas one that would become a second-rounder if not conveyed in 2027 would have more limited appeal to potential trade partners.

Here’s more on the Mavs:

  • Confirming an ESPN report, Cato says that the Mavericks and Pistons recently revisited conversations about a possible Bojan Bogdanovic trade. League sources tell The Athletic that the two teams discussed a framework that would’ve sent Bogdanovic and Killian Hayes to Dallas, with Tim Hardaway Jr. and JaVale McGee going to Detroit. It’s unclear what level of draft compensation the Pistons would’ve been seeking in such a deal or how far discussions advanced, says Cato.
  • As previously suggested during Tim MacMahon’s Howdy Partners podcast (YouTube link), the Mavericks are considered likely to trade or waive McGee before the 2023/24 regular season begins, according to Cato.
  • Assuming McGee is moved or let go, the Mavericks’ centers would be Richaun Holmes, Dwight Powell, and Dereck Lively. The team could still trade for another big man, but would be content to open the season with that trio, according to Cato. While Powell would be the favorite to start, Mavs staffers are optimistic about Holmes’ bounce-back potential, believing that he’ll be a better fit in the team’s “guard-based schemes” than he was in a Sacramento system centered around Domantas Sabonis, Cato adds.

Mavs Notes: G. Williams, Kyrie, Holmes, Thybulle

The Mavericks entered this offseason aiming to get younger, more athletic, and stronger defensively, according to Tim Cato of The Athletic, who notes that swapping out Reggie Bullock for Grant Williams could help achieve a couple of those goals. Dallas pivoted to Williams in free agency after missing out on Bruce Brown and will land the restricted free agent in a sign-and-trade deal with Boston.

As Cato outlines, Williams will essentially be playing the role that players like Dorian Finney-Smith and Bullock had in Dallas last season, guarding opposing perimeter threats on defense and stretching the floor on offense.

However, Cato believes that Williams has more to offer on offense than the players he’s replacing, writing that the Mavs’ newest forward isn’t as “static” and could get an opportunity to be a secondary creator when Luka Doncic and/or Kyrie Irving are double-teamed.

Here’s more on the Mavs:

  • Irving’s new three-year contract, originally reported to be worth $126MM, actually has a guaranteed base value of $120MM, tweets ESPN’s Bobby Marks. The remaining $6MM is made up incentives that are tied to games played and team success — Kyrie can earn $1MM per year by playing at least 65 games and $1MM each year the Mavs get to 50 wins (and Irving plays at least 58 games), reports Tim MacMahon of ESPN (Twitter link).
  • Richaun Holmes waived his $1.8MM trade kicker as part of the deal that sent him from Sacramento to Dallas, per MacMahon (Twitter link). That gave the Mavericks a little extra flexibility under their hard cap for their offer sheet to Matisse Thybulle, which was matched by Portland. The Mavs’ team salary remains $10.9MM below that hard cap, according to MacMahon and Marks.
  • Thybulle will be returning to the Trail Blazers after they matched his offer sheet, but it doesn’t sound like that was his preferred outcome. On the #thisleague UNCUT podcast, Marc Stein said that ending up in Dallas was something Thybulle had “been wanting even before this summer,” and Chris Haynes agreed. “Matisse desperately wanted to be a member of the Dallas Mavericks,” Haynes said (hat tip to Ashish Mathur of

Kings Trade Richaun Holmes, Olivier-Maxence Prosper To Mavs

JULY 6: The trade between the Kings and Mavericks is official, according to an announcement from the Mavs (Twitter link). Dallas acquired Holmes into the trade exception created in the Bertans deal, along with the rights to Prosper, in exchange for cash considerations.

JUNE 22: The Kings will trade center Richaun Holmes and the 24th pick to the Mavericks, tweets ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski. Marquette’s Olivier-Maxence Prosper was the selection at No. 24.

Holmes is under contract for 2023/24 at $12MM and holds a $12.8MM player option for the following season. Dallas will acquire him using the traded player exception it created earlier in the night by sending Davis Bertans to Oklahoma City.

Holmes, who had been Sacramento’s starting center for two-and-a-half seasons, saw his playing time slip dramatically after the 2022 trade deadline as Domantas Sabonis took over the starting job. Holmes averaged just 3.1 points and 1.9 rebounds in 42 games while playing 8.3 minutes per night.

The Mavericks continue to add frontline depth after landing Duke center Dereck Lively II with the 12th pick. It appears likely that Holmes will have a larger role in Dallas as the team tries to rebuild its supporting cast around Luka Doncic and the expected return of Kyrie Irving.

Prosper was able to raise his draft stock with an impressive showing at the combine and strong showings throughout the workout process. He reportedly held workouts with at least 16 teams.

The Kings’ return in the deal is not yet known, but it will likely be minimal, since Holmes is considered a salary dump. Sacramento now has the ability to create more than $30MM in cap room this offseason.

Stein’s Latest: Mavs, D. Powell, VanVleet, Schröder, D. Hall

The Mavericks “fully intend” to re-sign center Dwight Powell in free agency, Marc Stein reports in his latest rumor round-up at Substack. According to Stein, the Cavaliers and Rockets are also expected to show interest in Powell once he hits the open market, but the Mavs value him both on and off the court and are confident about their chances to retain him.

With Powell, Richaun Holmes, and lottery pick Dereck Lively II expected to be in the mix at center in Dallas, it didn’t make sense for Andre Drummond to turn down his player option with the Bulls in the hopes of signing with the Mavericks, Stein explains, following up on a previous rumor. If the Mavs had been able to trade Holmes, it might’ve been a different story, but Drummond opted for the guaranteed money and a clearer path to rotation minutes in Chicago.

Here’s more from Stein:

  • Fred VanVleet‘s current plan is to meet with both the Raptors and Rockets in person in Los Angeles when free agency opens on Friday, Stein tweets, reiterating in today’s article that Houston looks like a serious threat to sign the point guard away from Toronto.
  • The Lakers are “eager” to bring back point guard Dennis Schröder and would like to give him a raise, but will have a limited ability to do so with his Non-Bird rights. Echoing ESPN’s Dave McMenamin, Stein says there’s a scenario in which Los Angeles commits a portion of its mid-level exception to Schröder and uses the rest on another player.
  • Former NBA big man Donta Hall, who is in the midst of a multiyear contract with AS Monaco in Europe, has an NBA opt-out in his deal and is attracting some interest from teams stateside, according to Stein, who names the Grizzlies and Trail Blazers as a couple of the clubs eyeing Hall.
  • One Western Conference front office executive was surprised by how many potential free agents exercised their player options. “I’ve never seen this many good players opt in,” the executive told Stein.

Suns, Mavs Had Advanced Ayton Trade Talks During Draft

The Suns and Mavericks came close to making a deal on draft night that would have sent Deandre Ayton to Dallas, according to Marc Stein (Substack link).

Sources tell Stein that the proposed trade would have resulted in Tim Hardaway Jr., Richaun Holmes, and JaVale McGee heading to Phoenix. However, the Suns balked at the idea of taking back McGee as part of the package. It’s not yet known if the negotiations can or will be resuscitated, Stein writes.

The packaged described by Stein, which doesn’t include any draft compensation, seems pretty light for a former No. 1 overall pick. Sources tell Stein that the Suns were intrigued because they like Hardaway and Holmes and envisioned them as players who could immediately step into the rotation alongside stars Kevin Durant, Devin Booker, and Bradley Beal. Their contracts would also be movable in subsequent trades.

While one of Stein’s sources wouldn’t rule out the possibility of Phoenix and Dallas resuming their trade discussions, separate reports on Friday and Sunday indicated that the Suns intend to hang onto Ayton, which makes it sound as if the team has pivoted away from any talks involving the big man that occurred prior to or during Thursday’s draft.

Keith Pompey of The Philadelphia Inquirer, who reported on Saturday that the Suns had spoken to the Sixers about a deal involving Ayton and Tobias Harris, also followed up on Sunday by stating that Phoenix had ended its pursuit of Harris and planned to keep Ayton.

As Yossi Gozlan of HoopsHype notes (via Twitter), if the two teams are willing to reopen their negotiations, it would make sense to fold any potential deal into a four-way trade with the Thunder and Kings that includes the previous Davis Bertans and Holmes agreements. In that scenario, they might be able to find a way to reroute McGee to Oklahoma City or Sacramento.

McGee is still owed approximately $12MM in guaranteed money over the next two seasons, including a player option for 2024/25. That 2022 signing looks like a clear mistake by the Mavericks, who also explored signing Bruce Brown using part of their mid-level exception a year ago, but decided that McGee was a “bigger prize,” ESPN’s Tim MacMahon said during the latest Hoop Collective podcast (Twitter audio link).

Western Notes: Brooks, Holmes, Clippers, Waters

An in-depth feature on Grizzlies forward Dillon Brooks by Tim Keown of ESPN includes several interesting tidbits, including a detailed look at how Brooks thrives on defense and comments from head coach Taylor Jenkins about how important the 27-year-old is to the team’s culture. However, the spiciest part of the story comes when Brooks discusses one of Memphis’ chief rivals in the Western Conference.

“I don’t like Draymond at all,” Brooks said of Warriors forward Draymond Green. “I just don’t like Golden State. I don’t like anything to do with them. Draymond talks a lot. Gets away with a lot, too. His game is cool — with Golden State — but if you put him anywhere else, you’re not going to know who Draymond is. He plays with heart, plays hard, knows the ins and outs of their defense. I guess that’s why they like him over there.”

According to Keown, Green laughed and declined to comment when asked for the opportunity to respond, but Brooks’ expression of his views on Golden State and the former Defensive Player of the Year figure to add a fun new wrinkle to the next Grizzlies/Warriors matchup.

On a related note, Brooks will have to make an effort to keep his emotions in check on the court during the final weeks of the season. As Damichael Cole of The Memphis Commercial Appeal tweets, the Grizzlies forward received his 15th technical foul of 2022/23 on Wednesday — a 16th would trigger an automatic one-game suspension.

Here’s more from around the Western Conference:

  • Kings big man Richaun Holmes is suing the Sacramento Bee for defamation, according to Chris Haynes of TNT (Twitter link). The lawsuit alleges that The Bee, in a series of five articles, “intentionally, and maliciously, published claims of child and domestic abuse by Holmes despite easily accessible evidence to the contrary via public court filings.” Oddly, The Bee’s initial story on the domestic abuse accusations – which surfaced during a custody battle that Holmes eventually won – was presented as an opinion column rather than a news report.
  • After the team’s fourth consecutive loss on Thursday, Clippers head coach Tyronn Lue said his club needs to be mentally “tougher,” per Ohm Youngmisuk of ESPN. The Clips have blown double-digit leads in three of their four losses since the All-Star break. “I don’t care about missed shots, it’s going to happen,” Lue said. “You’re going to turn the ball over some, but you can’t give in, and my thing is just having that toughness and that mindset that, ‘OK, things are not going well, then let’s do something about it.'”
  • Thunder wing Lindy Waters, who grew up in Norman and played his college ball at Oklahoma State, is thrilled to have signed a standard NBA contract with his hometown team, as Joe Mussatto of The Oklahoman writes. “Thankful for a lot of people along the way that helped me to get to where I am,” Waters said. “Very thankful for the organization for giving me a shot, letting me come in and work out and showing they care. But yeah, it’s just been a wild ride.”

Fischer’s Latest: Anunoby, VanVleet, Clippers, Hornets, McGee, Bogdanovic

The Raptors remain the team to watch ahead of Thursday’s trade deadline, sources tell Jake Fischer of Yahoo Sports. Pascal Siakam doesn’t appear likely to be moved, although numerous teams have expressed interest, but sources point to OG Anunoby, Fred VanVleet and Gary Trent Jr. as more realistic trade candidates.

Fischer cites the Pelicans, Grizzlies, Knicks, Pacers, Trail Blazers, Lakers, Suns and Nets as teams that have recently been linked to Anunoby, although he states that there is “varying interest” around the league. Fischer’s sources confirm that Toronto is placing a premium price on the 24-year-old wing, which other front offices are calling “quite steep.”

Fischer also raises the possibility that offers for Anunoby will be lessened because of the chance that Kevin Durant might be available this summer in the wake of the Kyrie Irving trade. Although Durant hasn’t indicated to the Nets that he plans to issue another trade request, league insiders tell Fischer that several teams are planning to stockpile their resources in case it happens.

Fischer passes along a few more rumors heading into the deadline:

  • Multiple executives from other teams see VanVleet as the most likely Raptor to be moved this week. Fischer notes that the Clippers and Suns have been linked to VanVleet in trade rumors, and hears that the Lakers, Magic and Timberwolves have expressed interest as well.
  • The Clippers started looking for point guard help before John Wall was sidelined with an abdominal strain, sources tell Fischer. Numerous teams have expressed interest in Terance Mann, and the Clippers have several affordable contracts to help get a deal done. Fischer states that L.A. and Phoenix have both mentioned as possible landing spots for Kyle Lowry, Terry Rozier and D’Angelo Russell as well as VanVleet, with the Suns seeking an experienced playmaker who can eventually take over for Chris Paul.
  • Rozier has also been mentioned as a possibility for the Lakers and Timberwolves, Fischer adds, and the Heat are among the teams interested in Charlottte’s P.J. Washington, who wasn’t able to reach an extension agreement before the October deadline. Fischer notes that the Hornets typically aren’t a major player at the deadline, but he identifies Mason Plumlee as a potential trade piece, with the Kings expressing interest and having a desire to move backup center Richaun Holmes.
  • Another veteran center on the market is the MavericksJaVale McGee, according to Fischer. Dallas signed McGee to a three-year, $17MM deal last summer in anticipation of making him a starter, but he’s no longer part of the rotation.
  • Teams are becoming convinced that the Pistons plan to keep Bojan Bogdanovic. Fischer states that the Bucks recently inquired about the veteran sharpshooter after failing to close a deal with the Suns for Jae Crowder, but Detroit wants at least one unprotected first-round pick in return and Milwaukee can’t offer a first-rounder until 2029.

Scotto’s Latest: Reddish, Bucks, Holmes, Russell, Suns

After reporting earlier in the week that the Knicks had expressed interest in acquiring Bucks guard Grayson Allen in a possible Cam Reddish trade, Michael Scotto of HoopsHype says Milwaukee continues to resist the idea of including Allen in any deal for Reddish.

According to Scotto, the Bucks have instead proposed a trade structure that would be centered around a 2023 second-round pick and salary filler. That “salary filler” could consist of veteran guard George Hill and big man Serge Ibaka, Scotto adds.

As for the second-round pick, the Bucks control both their own 2023 second-rounder and the least favorable of the Cavaliers’ and Warriors’ selections. Both Milwaukee and Cleveland currently have top-seven records, so those picks would both be in the 50s.

Here’s more from Scotto:

  • Marc Stein previously reported that rival teams were monitoring Kings center Richaun Holmes as a potential buyout candidate if he’s not moved at the trade deadline. However, league sources tell Scotto that a buyout won’t happen for Holmes this season. That’s no surprise — as I previously noted, Holmes is still owed $12MM in 2023/24 and $12.9MM on a ’24/25 player option after this season, while buyouts typically occur when a player is on an expiring deal.
  • Rival executives still believe that the Timberwolves will explore trading point guard D’Angelo Russell before the deadline, says Scotto. There were rumblings in December that the Heat and Wolves had at least a conversation about a swap involving Russell and Kyle Lowry, according to Scotto, but with Miami playing better, the team isn’t looking to move Lowry at this point.
  • Former Thunder VP and chief of staff Paul Rivers and former NBA point guard Mateen Cleaves have been mentioned by multiple NBA executives as candidates to join the Suns‘ organization, Scotto reports. Cleaves played with incoming Suns owner Mat Ishbia at Michigan State.

Trade Rumors: Suns, Holmes, Reid, Raptors, Bamba

Suns point guard Chris Paul has missed 21 of 48 games this season due to injuries and has seen his production dip even when he’s healthy — his 13.4 points per game would be a career low, while his 42.7% field goal percentage is the second-worst mark of his career.

Paul’s limitations have prompted the Suns to begin considering their post-CP3 future at point guard, according to Marc Stein, who reports at Substack that Phoenix has identified the RaptorsFred VanVleet, the HornetsTerry Rozier, and the KnicksImmanuel Quickley as potential trade targets.

As Stein outlines, the Knicks are considered unlikely to move Quickley and it remains to be seen what Toronto’s intentions are for VanVleet, but Rozier is widely believed to be very much available for a struggling Hornets club that will likely be one of the deadline’s top sellers.

Here are a few more trade-related rumors from around the NBA:

  • Teams with a need for frontcourt help are keeping an eye on Kings center Richaun Holmes as a possible buyout candidate if Sacramento can’t move him before the trade deadline, says Stein. That seems like a long shot, given that Holmes is still owed $12MM in 2023/24 and $12.9MM on a ’24/25 player option after this season.
  • Following up on Michael Scotto’s reporting on Naz Reid, Kevin O’Connor of The Ringer cites league sources who say that the Nets are among the teams who have inquired on the Timberwolves big man. Scotto identified the Clippers and Nuggets as teams with interest in Reid.
  • League sources are skeptical that the Raptors will move Pascal Siakam or OG Anunoby unless the return is massive, but view Gary Trent Jr. and Fred VanVleet as more viable trade candidates due to their contract situations, writes O’Connor. Both Trent and VanVleet have 2023/24 player options which they’re expected to decline.
  • Magic center Mohamed Bamba is considered “readily available” via trade, sources tell O’Connor. Bamba re-signed with Orlando in the offseason but has played a modest reserve role, averaging 17.4 minutes per game in 37 appearances. His $10.3MM salary for 2023/24 is non-guaranteed.