Robert Franks

And-Ones: Wembanyama, Henderson, Satoransky, Randall

Star prospect Victor Wembanyama will play for France’s national team in November during the next round of World Cup qualifying games, per an Associated Press report. The French club is set to face Lithuania on November 11 and will play Bosnia and Herzegovina on November 14.

Wembanyama is coming off a pair of eye-opening exhibition performances against the G League Ignite this week, as he solidified his place as the No. 1 player in the 2022 draft class by pouring in 73 points and blocking nine shots in the two games. The 18-year-old big man, who told Tim Reynolds of The Associated Press that his goal is “to be like something you’ve never seen,” is drawing rave reviews from many of the NBA’s biggest stars.

“He has the chance to be one of the best — not in his age, not in Europe — but one of the best to ever play this game,” Giannis Antetokounmpo said of Wembanyama, according to Alex Kennedy of “We have never seen someone like that before. I think it’s a good challenge for everybody in the league, to have somebody who’s 7-foot-2 and is able to shoot over you and dribble like he’s a guard and block shots and run down the floor fast. We gotta get ready for this kid, you know? He’s going to be really good.”

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

  • While Wembanyama is considered a generational talent and earned more buzz this week, star Ignite guard Scoot Henderson isn’t ready to concede the top spot in next year’s draft, as he tells Marc J. Spears of Andscape. He also downplayed the idea that he’ll have a long-standing rivalry with the Frenchman. “I’m not worried about him,” Henderson said. “I’m worried about the next level. I’m worried about guarding Steph (Curry).”
  • Jonathan Givony’s latest 2023 mock draft at ESPN (Insider-only link) has Overtime Elite guard Amen Thompson as the No. 3 pick behind Wembanyama and Henderson, followed by Arkansas’ Nick Smith and Villanova’s Cameron Whitmore.
  • Speaking to Alex Molina of Eurohoops, veteran guard Tomas Satoransky expressed pride that he can say he was an NBA player, but admitted that he went through some “ups and downs” in the league. Satoransky said that he’s happy to be back in Europe, playing for Barcelona, because his new deal offers more stability for him and his family than he would have had in the NBA.
  • Former UT Martin guard Craig Randall, who averaged 26.7 PPG for the Long Island Nets last season, tells Tim MacMahon of ESPN that he turned down NBA camp offers that included guaranteed money. Randall instead opted to head to Australia’s National Basketball League, where he’ll have a chance to play a significant role for the Adelaide 36ers. Randall and teammates Antonius Cleveland and Robert Franks all have NBA out clauses in their contracts with Adelaide, according to MacMahon.

Robert Franks Signs In Australia

Free agent forward Robert Franks has signed with the Brisbane Bullets of Australia’s National Basketball League, the team announced in a press release.

Franks, who went undrafted in 2019, played seven games on two 10-day contracts with the Magic last season. He played 14.4 minutes per contest, averaging 6.1 points and 2.0 rebounds on 46% shooting.

“His unique skillset and versatility provides everything we’ve been looking for at this position,” Bullets general manager Sam Mackinnon said. “I spoke to Robert yesterday, he’s looking forward to joining his teammates and meeting all the Bullet fans. He’s hungry and motivated to take the next step with us.”

Prior to signing his 10-day deals, Franks inked an Exhibit 10 contract with Orlando and spent time with the team’s G League affiliate. He averaged 12.1 points and 6.6 rebounds per game across those 14 contests with the Lakeland Magic.

Magic Sign Moritz Wagner, Cut Robert Franks

9:40am: The Magic have officially signed Wagner, the team announced in a press release. Franks has been released early from his 10-day contract in order to open up the necessary roster spot.

9:00am: The Magic have agreed to sign free agent big man Moritz Wagner, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN (Twitter link). It’ll be a standard contract for Wagner rather than a 10-day deal, Wojnarowski adds.

Wagner, who turned 24 on Monday, has already played for three teams since being selected with the 25th overall pick in the 2018 draft. He spent his rookie year with the Lakers, was traded to the Wizards in the three-team Anthony Davis blockbuster in 2019, then was flipped to the Celtics at this year’s deadline in a three-team deal that also involved the Bulls. Boston subsequently waived Wagner.

A 6’11” forward/center, Wagner has averaged 6.5 PPG and 3.2 RPG in 122 career games (14.1 MPG) as a pro. While the German has some potential as a floor-stretching big man, his three-point shot has been unreliable since he entered the NBA — he has made just 30.2% of his outside attempts.

Having shifted into rebuilding mode, the Magic will see what they can get out of Wagner down the stretch as he presumably auditions for a spot on next year’s roster. It’s not clear yet whether or not Wagner’s deal with the Magic will cover multiple seasons, but even if it’s just a rest-of-season pact, he’d be eligible for restricted free agency this offseason.

Orlando doesn’t currently have an open 15-man roster spot, but has two players on 10-day deals. As we noted earlier today, Robert Franks‘ and Donta Hall‘s 10-day contracts run through Saturday and Sunday, respectively. If the Magic want to officially sign Wagner before this weekend, they could terminate one of those two contracts early (the player would still be paid for 10 days of service).

Magic Re-Sign Robert Franks To Second 10-Day Deal

9:05am: Franks’ new 10-day deal is now official, according to an announcement from the Magic.

7:51am: The Magic will re-sign forward Robert Franks to a second 10-day contract, reports Shams Charania of The Athletic (via Twitter). Franks’ first 10-day deal with the team expired overnight.

Franks, 24, played for the Lakeland Magic, Orlando’s G League affiliate, earlier this year. He averaged 12.1 PPG and 6.6 RPG on .504/.356/.783 shooting in 14 games (24.5 MPG) for a Lakeland squad that eventually won the G League title, earning him a shot with the NBA club.

In his first 10 days with Orlando, Franks appeared in four games, averaging 5.0 PPG and 1.8 RPG on .500/.429/.833 shooting in 11.8 minutes per contest.

Assuming Franks’ second 10-day contract is officially finalized today, it’ll cover the Magic’s next six games, expiring after the team’s May 1 contest vs. Memphis. At that point, Orlando will either have to sign Franks to a rest-of-season contract or let him walk.

Franks will earn $99,020 on his 10-day deal.

Magic Sign Robert Franks To 10-Day Deal

APRIL 12: The Magic have officially signed Franks to a 10-day deal, the team announced today in a press release.

The move gives Orlando a full 15-man roster, meaning that if the club still intends to sign Hall, it will have to happen after one of the current 10-day contracts expires (or after the Magic waive someone).

APRIL 10: The Magic are planning to sign forward Robert Franks to a 10-day contract, tweets Shams Charania of The Athletic.

Franks, 24, went undrafted in 2019 out of Washington State but ended up signing a two-way deal with the Hornets. He never saw time in the NBA and was waived by Charlotte in January 2020.

Franks later inked an Exhibit 10 deal with the Magic last November but was waived less than a month later. He later suited up for the Lakeland Magic, Orlando’s G League affiliate, during the 2020/21 bubble season.

In 14 G League games with Lakeland, Franks averaged 12.1 PPG, 6.7 RPG and 1.5 APG.

The Magic currently have 13 players on standard contracts, with Devin Cannady on a 10-day deal and Donta Hall also expected to sign a 10-day pact at some point. If Orlando wants to sign both Franks and Hall before Cannady’s 10-day deal expires next Thursday, the team will need to waive someone else to make room on its 15-man roster.

Magic Place Three Players On Waivers

The Magic have waived their three Exhibit 10 players, tweets Josh Robbins of The Athletic. Gone are guard Devin Cannady, forward Robert Franks and center Jon Teske.

The Magic also signed and waived undrafted guard Jeff Dowtin, who averaged 13.9 PPG, 3.5 RPG, and 3.2 APG on .429/.360/.757 as a senior at Rhode Island last season. His very brief stint on the roster was for G League rights purposes.

Orlando is now down to the league limit of 15 players, all with guaranteed contracts, plus two-way players Jordan Bone and Karim Mane.

Cannady was in camp with the Nets last season and played for their G League affiliate in Long Island. Franks divided last year between the Hornets’ and Kings’ teams in the G League. Teske signed with the Magic after going undrafted out of Michigan last month.

Magic Announce Five Free Agent Signings

The Magic have officially announced five free agent signings ahead of the start of training camps next week. Here are the five newly-added players to Orlando’s roster:

Bone and Mane project to fill the Magic’s two-way contract slots to start the season — you can read more about them and Teske in our previous stories on their contract agreements.

Cannady, who went undrafted out of Princeton in 2019, signed with Brooklyn last October, but was only on the roster for three days, allowing the Nets to claim his G League rights. He spent his rookie season with the Long Islands Nets, averaging 14.5 PPG, 4.0 RPG, and 2.6 APG in 39 NBAGL games (30.9 MPG).

As for Franks, he also went undrafted last year – out of Washington State – and spent the season in the G League. The 23-year-old power forward started the 2019/20 campaign on a two-way contract with the Hornets, but never got into an NBA game and was waived in January. He put up 17.3 PPG and 6.5 RPG in 36 G League contests for the Greensboro Swarm and Stockton Kings.

Cannady, Franks, and Teske likely won’t make Orlando’s regular season roster, but appear poised to spending training camp with the club.

Hornets Waive Robert Franks

The Hornets have opened a two-way slot by waiving Robert Franks, the team announced on Twitter.

The 23-year-old forward signed a two-way deal with Charlotte in July after going undrafted out of Washington State. He didn’t appear in any NBA games, but was averaging 18.5 points and 5.5 rebounds in 22 games with the Hornets’ G League affiliate in Greensboro.

Today marks this season’s deadline for signing two-way players, so another move could be coming from Charlotte later tonight.

Hornets Convert Caleb Martin To Two-Way Deal

After waiving two-way player Ahmed Hill earlier today, the Hornets have filled that newly-opened two-way slot by converting rookie forward Caleb Martin‘s Exhibit 10 deal into a two-way pact, the team announced in a press release.

It appears that Martin, whose twin brother Cody Martin was selected by the Hornets in the second round of this year’s draft, will remain on the same roster as Cody after playing with him at Nevada as well.

Caleb averaged 19.2 PPG, 5.1 RPG, and 2.8 APG in 34 games as a senior for the Wolf Pack. In five preseason games with the Hornets, he recorded 9.6 PPG, 3.2 RPG, and 1.2 APG in 20.6 minutes per game.

While Martin and Robert Franks are occupying the Hornets’ two-way slots for the time being, that could change. Rod Boone of The Athletic tweeted earlier today that Kobi Simmons and Jalen McDaniels, who are currently on non-guaranteed contracts, are candidates to get two-way deals in Charlotte. Boone also hears that converting Martin to a two-way deal may be a procedural move to get him back on the regular roster on a new standard contract (Twitter link).

For now, the Hornets have 17 players under contract — 13 on guaranteed salaries, Simmons and McDaniels on non-guaranteed deals, and Martin and Franks on two-way pacts.

Hornets Issue Required Tender To Jalen McDaniels

The Hornets have issued a one year, non-guaranteed, minimum-salary contract offer (“required tender”) to 2019 second-round pick, rookie forward Jalen McDaniels, reports Rick Bonnell of The Charlotte Observer.

Per Bobby Marks of ESPN, all unsigned 2019 second-round draft picks become free agents if not given a required tender by today, so the Hornets had to make a decision as to whether they wanted to retain McDaniels’ rights after drafting the San Diego State product No. 52 overall in the 2019 NBA Draft.

As we noted earlier today, the Hornets have already agreed to sign rookie guard Ahmed Hill to the team’s second two-way contract, and with the expected addition of point guard Kobi Simmons, Charlotte will have a full 20-man offseason roster without McDaniels. As such, the team may no longer be interested in bringing the rookie to training camp this season.

However, as Bonnell notes, two-way contracts can be a fluid situation, so if Charlotte wants to sign McDaniels to a two-way contract later (perhaps when his legal troubles are more thoroughly settled), the team could easily move on from Hill or fellow two-way recipient Robert Franks.