Robert Sacre

And-Ones: Rockets, Sacre, Austin

The Rockets will make a bid to host the All-Star Game writes Jonathan Feigen on the Houston Chronicle and are preparing to make their case for either the 2020 or 2021 festivities.

Just recently, Feigen writes, the league sent the Rockets and other select teams information related to the bidding process. The team ultimately granted the privilege to host the week-long celebration will set out to make the most out of an excellent economic opportunity.

In 2013, the last time the Rockets hosted the event, the game generated roughly $60MM in direct spending and a near $100MM economic impact. The city of Houston also hosted All-Star Weekend in 2006 and 1989.

There’s more news from the NBA world today:

Pelicans Waive Shawn Dawson, Robert Sacre

The Pelicans have begun making their preseason roster cuts, announcing today in a press release that guard Shawn Dawson and center Robert Sacre have been waived by the team. New Orleans’ roster now sits at 18 players, so three more cuts will be required before opening night.

Dawson, an Israeli native, signed a non-guaranteed summer contract with the Pelicans and appeared in three preseason contests for the team, totaling just 10 minutes in those games. Sacre, a former Laker who was also on a non-guaranteed deal, played even less, appearing in just one exhibition contest for New Orleans. Both players were viewed as long shots to make the Pelicans’ 15-man roster, and will now become free agents if and when they clear waivers.

Quinn Cook and Quincy Ford are the other two players on non-guaranteed contracts on the Pelicans’ roster, so they’re good bets to be waived by Monday. The final roster decision will be a little tougher, and will likely come down to Alonzo Gee, who has a fully guaranteed salary, vs. Lance Stephenson, who doesn’t.

Pelicans Announce Chris Copeland, Robert Sacre Deals

The Pelicans have finally made their deals with Chris Copeland and Robert Sacre official, announcing today in a press release that they’ve added both players to their camp roster. As we heard back in August, Copeland and Sacre will both be on non-guaranteed, one-year summer contracts, so they won’t count against New Orleans’ cap unless they make the regular-season roster.

Copeland, 32, played for the Bucks last season after having also spent time with the Knicks and Pacers over the course of his NBA career. He played sparingly in Milwaukee, averaging just 2.1 PPG in 6.5 minutes per contest for the team. He shot a career-worst 33.3% from the floor, including 27.8% on three-pointers.

As for Sacre, he spent the first four seasons of his NBA career in Los Angeles with the Lakers. The last player selected in the 2012 draft, Sacre averaged 4.2 PPG and 3.1 RPG for the Lakers in 189 career regular-season games.

The competition for a regular-season roster spot in New Orleans will be tough for Copeland and Sacre. The club currently has 15 players on guaranteed salaries for 2016/17, with Lance Stephenson and Shawn Dawson also in camp vying for a place on the team’s 15-man roster.

Contract Notes: Sacre, Sabonis, Jerrett

Here are the latest free agent and 2016 draft pick contract details, courtesy of Basketball Insiders’ Eric Pincus:

  • Grant Jerrett‘s training camp deal with the Trail Blazers is a one-year, non-guaranteed pact worth $980,431, Pincus tweets. If the forward makes Portland’s regular season roster, his deal won’t be guaranteed until the January 10th, 2017, which is the leaguewide date for contracts this season. The Blazers currently have $112,354,979 in guaranteed salary on the books for 2016/17.
  • The summer contracts the Raptors inked Drew Crawford and Yanick Moreira to are both non-guaranteed deals worth $543,471 apiece, per Pincus (Twitter link). Each deal would become fully guaranteed on December 15th, 2016, provided they made the regular season roster. Toronto currently has $106,077,999 in guaranteed salary already on the books for this campaign.
  • In keeping with the non-guaranteed summer contract trend we have going here, the Pelicans agreements with Robert Sacre and Chris Copeland will count as $980,431 against the cap each, with both players actual salaries set at $1,050,961, Pincus relays (on Twitter). Shawn Dawson‘s non-guaranteed deal will pay him $543,471, should he make the team, the scribe adds. All three deals would become fully guaranteed if they remain on the roster past January 10th, 2017. The Pelicans’ fully guaranteed commitments currently stand at $97,799,631 for the coming season.
  • Domantas Sabonis‘ rookie-scale deal with the Thunder will pay him $2,440,200 this season, $2,550,000 in 2017/18, $2,659,800 in 2018/19 and $3,529,555 the final season, Pincus tweets. Ronnie Price‘s two-year pact, which is fully guaranteed, will see him earn $2,557,545 this year and $2,442,445 in 2017/18, Pincus adds. OKC’s guaranteed commitments currently total up to $91,860,496 for 2016/17.

Pelicans To Ink Sacre To Training Camp Pact

The Pelicans have reached an agreement with unrestricted free agent center Robert Sacre, Marc Stein of reports (via Twitter). The scribe classifies it as a training camp deal, meaning the arrangement is likely a minimum salary one that includes little or no guaranteed money.

Sacre, who played the last four seasons with the Lakers, had also drawn interest from the Timberwolves and Rockets, according to a report by Darren Wolfson of 1500 ESPN.

The 27-year-old appeared in 25 games for Los Angeles during the 2015/16 campaign, averaging 3.5 points and 2.9 rebounds in 12.8 minutes per outing. Sacre’s shooting line on the season was .413/.000/.658.

Free Agent Notes: Timberwolves, Wizards, Randolph

The Timberwolves offered veteran small forward Luol Deng a three-year contract at $12MM per season, according to Darren Wolfson of KSTP Radio (Twitter link). Head coach and president of basketball operations Tim Thobideau refused to fully guarantee the third year, Wolfson adds. In the end, the Timberwolves didn’t come close to signing Deng, as the former Heat starter agreed to a four-year, $72MM contract with the Lakers.
In other news regarding free agency:
  • The Wizards have interest in re-signing shooting guard Alan Anderson and will meet with him this weekend, league sources told J. Michael of (Twitter links). The meeting is expected to take place in Las Vegas, Michael adds. Anderson, who made $4MM last season, appeared in just 13 games with the Wizards after undergoing a second surgery on his left ankle. The previous season, he played in 74 games with the Nets and averaged 7.4 points in 23.6 minutes.
  • Shooting guard Brandon Paul is drawing major interest around the league after some strong performances for the Hornets’ summer-league team, Sportando tweets. He’s averaging 15.3 points and 7.3 rebounds through four games in the Orlando Summer League. The 6’4” Paul went undrafted in 2013 out of the University of Illinois and has been playing for a Spanish league team, FIATC Joventut.
  • Forward Anthony Randolph will remain in Europe and sign a one-year deal with Spain’s Real Madrid, a source told Marc J. Spears of (Twitter links). Randolph received interest from the Mavericks this summer, Spears adds. The contract will be the $1.5MM-$2MM range, international journalist David Pick tweets. The 6’11” Randolph hasn’t played in the NBA since the 2013/14 season, when he appeared in 43 games with the Nuggets.
  • Power forward Willie Reed has drawn interest from the Warriors, Spurs, Heat, Thunder, Timberwolves and Pacers, Alex Kennedy of Basketball Insiders tweets. Reed, an unrestricted free agent, averaged 4.7 points and 3.1 rebounds in 10.9 minutes over 39 games with the Nets last season.
  • Free agent center Robert Sacre, who played the last four seasons with the Lakers, has drawn interest from the Timberwolves and Rockets, Wolfson reports in a separate tweet.

Lakers Rumors: Bryant, Scott, Clarkson, Young

After Kobe Bryant gave the NBA an unforgettable 60-point sendoff Wednesday, the Lakers faced the first day of the post-Kobe era, writes Mark Medina of The Los Angeles Daily News“Sometimes you cannot help but think about it,” coach Byron Scott said of his 17-65 team. “When you have the type of season that you have, changes will be made.” The changes may start with Scott, who has one year left on his contract, although Medina says the organization recognizes the difficult position he faced with trying to balance a young roster and Bryant’s retirement tour.

The Lakers will have an estimated $55MM in cap space this summer, with much of that being opened by the end of Bryant’s $25MM contract and the expiration of Roy Hibbert‘s $15.5MM deal. The only guaranteed contracts for next year belong to D’Angelo Russell, Julius Randle, Larry Nance Jr., Anthony Brown, Nick Young and Lou Williams. The Lakers would like to keep restricted free agent Jordan Clarkson, and Brandon Bass may be back with a $3.1MM player option. More difficult decisions surround Hibbert, Metta World Peace, Marcelo Huertas, Tarik Black, Ryan Kelly and Robert Sacre.

There’s more out of Los Angeles:

  • Clarkson believes he will be a Laker again next season, Medina tweets. Clarkson made $845,059 this year, and L.A. must make a $3.2MM qualifying offer to retain the right to match competing bids through the Gilbert Arenas Provision. “I feel confident I’ll be back here,” Clarkson said in today’s exit interview. “I want to be here.”
  • Two other free agents also prefer to remain Lakers, Medina relays on Twitter. “This is a great place for me and I love it here,” said Sacre, who made $981,348 this season in the final year of his contract (link). “I’d love to be a part of this process of flipping it around,” said Kelly, who earned more than $1.724MM this season. “But we’ll see (link).”
  • Young may not be brought back despite having two years and more than $11MM left on his contract, but he understands the need for changes, Medina writes in a separate story. “You never know what’s gonna happen, but you know something’s got to happen,” Young said. “I know the Lakers are gonna make decisions for the Lakers. We did win 17 games after all.” L.A. expected to try to deal Young in the offseason and may seek to negotiate a buyout if trade talks are unsuccessful.

Pacific Notes: Watson, Sacre, Green

Despite the Suns‘ struggles this season, center Tyson Chandler believes the franchise is heading in the right direction and credits the leadership of interim coach Earl Watson for changing the locker room culture, Paul Coro of The Arizona Republic writes. “I’m excited with the direction we’re going,” Chandler said. “Of late, it’s showing in the win column but I just like what we’re doing. I like the mentality. I like the culture. I think things are really changing around here. It puts a little pep in your step. It’s amazing what the mind can do to you. When you’re carrying so much weight, you don’t have the pep in your step and the excitement that you normally play with. Once you’re able to release some of that stuff and the team starts playing the right way, it’s amazing how much better you feel.

For his part, Watson credits the team’s veterans for the improvement, noting that change wouldn’t have been possible without their buying in, Coro adds. “The thing about vets is you can’t fool them,” Watson told Coro. “If it wasn’t the right message or the correct teachings, they wouldn’t buy in. We understand it’s a give-take relationship. We want to make sure we enhance everyone. They believe. The young guys believe. That’s the most powerful movement in our program.”

Here’s more from the Pacific Division:

  • Lakers center Robert Sacre says he is trying to remain positive despite having only appeared in 20 games this season while the team plummets in the standings, Mark Medina of The Los Angeles Daily News relays. “It’s been really tough,” said Sacre. “That’s the whole point about this. We get paid the big bucks for that reason just to be ready and stay ready. You just have to be ready when your name is called.” The 26-year-old is averaging just 3.1 points and 2.4 rebounds in 12.9 minutes per contest and will become an unrestricted free agent at season’s end.
  • Jeff Green has provided the Clippers with solid production since being acquired at the trade deadline, but it remains to be seen if he and Blake Griffin can co-exist once the power forward returns from injury and his suspension for striking a member of the team’s training staff, Moke Hamilton of Basketball Insiders writes. The scribe notes that Green, despite being well-suited for a role as a stretch-four, will likely benefit from playing alongside Griffin at small forward, whose consistency and athleticism are sorely missed by his squad. In 13 games for the Clippers, Green is averaging 10.3 points, 3.6 rebounds and 1.6 assists in 27.1 minutes per night. The combo froward is set to hit unrestricted free agency this summer.

Lakers Explore Trading Young, Sacre, Kelly

MONDAY, 8:11am: The Lakers are exploring trades for Robert Sacre and Ryan Kelly in addition to Young, report Wojnarowski and Yahoo Sports colleague Marc J. Spears, who raise the possibility that either Sacre, Kelly or both end up in the Hibbert deal. They don’t mention Young in the context of that trade agreement with Indiana, however.

Kelly, due more than $1.724MM, and Sacre, due a minimum salary of more than $981K, are entering the final year of their respective contracts. Young makes more than $5.219MM this coming season in year two of a four-year deal.

SUNDAY, 6:53pm: With all the moves the Lakers are set to make, there’s a need to clear some cap space and, as a result, Nick Young is a strong candidate to be dealt, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports (Twitter link).

The Lakers are set to acquire Roy Hibbert, sign Lou Williams and sign Brandon Bass. With Williams, who led or tied for the Raptors’ lead in scoring in 18 games, which was second-most for a reserve in the league, on board, Young is expendable. In a separate tweet, Wojnarowski reports, citing league sources, that the Lakers could include a player to Indiana in the Hibbert trade.

Even before the flurry of moves, there was talk of the Lakers unloading Young. It was reported in April that the Lakers planned to shop Young this summer after a subpar season and conflict with coach Byron Scott. Young, 30, slumped to a career-worst 36.6% field goal percentage, and his 13.4 points per game were well off the prior season’s 17.9 PPG mark.

Lakers To Keep Robert Sacre

JULY 1ST, 2:30am: The Lakers have indeed decided to retain Sacre for the 2015/16 campaign, Charania reports (on Twitter).

JUNE 10TH, 12:27pm: The Lakers are likely to retain Robert Sacre past June 30th, when his non-guaranteed salary becomes fully guaranteed, as league sources informed Shams Charania of RealGM. The guarantee date represents a de facto team option for the Lakers, given its proximity to the June 29th date on which most options must be either exercised or declined.

The move wouldn’t impinge much upon the team’s flexibility for the July free agency rush, as Sacre is slated to make only the three-year veteran’s minimum of slightly more than $981K next season. That would leave the Lakers with still only about $36MM in commitments for 2015/16.

Charania suggests there’s a chance the Lakers could look into reworking Sacre’s contract, but renegotiations and extensions aren’t allowed for contracts that aren’t at least four seasons. Sacre’s deal is a three-year pact.

The 26-year-old center has been a part of the rotation each of the past two seasons for the Lakers, averaging 5.0 points and 3.7 rebounds in 16.8 minutes per game over that span. He played a lesser role as a rookie after the team made him the final pick of the 2012 draft, but he nonetheless wound up signing the deal he has now. The Lakers are in line to draft either Karl-Anthony Towns or Jahlil Okafor with the No. 2 overall pick this month, a move that poses a threat to Sacre’s playing time, particularly with the expected return of injured power forward Julius Randle. It’s possible that the team’s apparent willingness to guarantee Sacre’s salary is a sign it won’t draft a big man, but that’s not necessarily the case, given Sacre’s strong production relative to his cost.