Tacko Fall

Hassan Whiteside Reportedly Intends To Retire

Veteran center Hassan Whiteside has informed Piratas de Quebradillas – his team last season in Puerto Rico – that he intends to retire from basketball, according to a report from the Puerto Rican newspaper El Nuevo Dia.

Although Whiteside hasn’t made an official, public announcement himself, he did re-post several social media stories about his reported retirement on his Instagram account.

Whiteside, 34, was the 33rd overall pick out of Marshall in the 2010 draft and spent his first two professional seasons playing in Sacramento. However, he saw limited minutes in just total 19 appearances for the Kings and subsequently played in the G League, China, and Lebanon from 2012-14 before catching on with the Heat.

The best stretch of Whiteside’s NBA career came in Miami from 2014-19, as he averaged 14.1 points, 11.9 rebounds, and 2.4 blocks across 324 appearances (259 starts) in 27.2 minutes per night. He made the All-Defensive Second Team and led the NBA in blocked shots in 2015/16, then was the league’s top rebounder in ’16/17.

Whiteside was traded from the Heat to the Trail Blazers entering the final season of a four-year, $98MM+ contract in 2019 and once again led the NBA in blocked shots in his first and only season in Portland. He was a backup center with the Kings in 2020/21 and the Jazz in ’21/22 before playing in Puerto Rico in 2023.

For his career, Whiteside averaged 12.6 PPG, 10.8 RPG, and 2.2 BPG in 511 NBA regular season games (24.7 MPG). Despite his gaudy stats, the big man sometimes faced criticism due to the perception that he pursued individual numbers over team success and that his effort fluctuated on the defensive end of the court.

According to El Nuevo Dia, Whiteside will be replaced on Piratas de Quebradillas’ roster this season by another former NBA player: 7’6″ center Tacko Fall.

Tacko Fall To Sign With Another Team In China

Free agent center Tacko Fall will spend another year in China, according to Shams Charania of The Athletic (Twitter link). Charania reports that Fall will sign with the Nanjing Monkey Kings after playing last season for the Xinjiang Flying Tigers.

Despite his towering 7’6″ frame, Fall hasn’t been able to establish himself in the NBA. He played 26 combined games in two years with the Celtics, then 11 games for the Cavaliers, but he’s been out of the league since Cleveland waived him in January of 2022. He finished that season in the G League before heading overseas.

Fall joined the Bucks’ Summer League team this year in the hopes of getting another NBA opportunity. In five games in Las Vegas, he averaged 6.4 points, 4.4 rebounds and 1.6 blocks in 13.1 minutes per contest.

In an interview with Charania, Fall talks about how basketball is played in China compared to the NBA.

“They play very physical, especially when you’re an import,” he said. “Everything is focused on you. So I used to joke, I used to be on the phone with some of my friends like, ‘I’m getting guarded here like I’m Steph Curry.’ Because they’d literally be with you from one sideline to the other.”

Central Notes: Toppin, Fall, Terry, Dobner

Obi Toppin is happy that he can wipe the slate clean with another franchise, Stefan Bondy of the New York Daily News writes.

Toppin was traded by the Knicks to the Pacers after being limited to 15 starts in 201 games through three seasons. He only averaged 14.7 minutes per game after being the eighth overall pick of the 2020 draft.

“I didn’t get the minutes I wanted. But now it’s a fresh start. I’m here in Indy,” he said. “I got to work for everything I want. And I’m super excited to start.”

The Knicks received two future second-rounders in the deal.

We have more from the Central Division:

  • Tacko Fall is on the Bucks’ Summer  League roster, hoping to get another shot to play in the league during the regular season. The 7’6” Fall spent last seasons in China. “When you know what you’re capable of, you’ve just got to keep going until you hit it, and that’s pretty much what I’m doing right now,” he told Steve Bulpett of Heavy.com. Fall has appeared in a total of 37 NBA games with Boston and Cleveland.
  • Dalen Terry, the No. 18 pick of the 2022 draft, blanketed Toronto rookie Gradey Dick during the Bulls’ Summer League opener on Friday. It’s exactly the type of growth Chicago’s staff wants to see from Terry, Darnell Mayberry of The Athletic writes. “I love that type of energy and effort and accountability to want to be great defensively,” Summer League coach John Bryant said. “Let’s see how it continues. I think he’s a great defender. I think he has the ability to be a great, consistent defender.”
  • Sidney Dobner confidently stated her case to new Bucks head coach Adrian Griffin and that helped her become the franchise’s first female assistant coach, according to Ben Steele of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. She was Milwaukee’s first female video coordinator last season. “I reached out to Coach Griff and shot my shot a little bit,” she said. “The NBA moves fast and sometimes you just got to take hold of your opportunity. Just presented the idea to him and it sounded like he was really on board, and next thing you know I was being announced as an assistant coach.”

Tacko Fall Signing With Chinese Team

Free agent Tacko Fall is signing a one-year contract to play in China with the Xinjiang Flying Tigers, sources tell Shams Charania of The Athletic (Twitter link).

After going undrafted in 2019 out of Central Florida, the 7’6″ center initially signed an Exhibit 10 deal with the Celtics which was later converted to a two-way contract. He spent his first two professional seasons in Boston on two-way deals, appearing in 26 NBA games (6.5 MPG) with averages of 2.7 PPG and 2.6 RPG.

Fall signed a two-way contract with the Cavaliers last season, appearing in 11 games before being waived in January.

Despite his modest impact at the NBA level, the 26-year-old has been a G League standout, earning a spot on the All-Defensive Team last season for the Cleveland Charge. In 26 regular season games (26.5 MPG) with the Cavs’ affiliate, he averaged 14.8 PPG, 10.7 RPG and 2.7 BPG.

Fall most recently suited up for the Jazz during Summer League action.

Jazz Notes: Mitchell, Gobert Trade, Juzang, Bradds

Despite recently agreeing to trade All-Star center Rudy Gobert for a collection of veteran contracts and first-round draft picks in a deal sure to reduce their ceiling in the short term, the Jazz have indicated to inquiring teams that All-Star guard Donovan Mitchell isn’t available as a trade target, per Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN (Twitter link via ClutchPoints).

“They want to continue to build a roster around Donovan Mitchell,” Wojnarowski said of Utah’s front office. “They have shut down any team who has called about trying to trade for Donovan Mitchell. The Jazz are committed to moving forward with him as their cornerstone player.”

How much of this stance is merely a negotiating tactic remains to be seen. Marc Stein adds in a new Substack piece that, while he echoes Woj’s reporting that the Jazz are currently suggesting a disinterest in dealing away the 25-year-old All-NBA shooting guard, he expects that team CEO Danny Ainge would have the blessing of ownership to move Mitchell in the future.

Around rival executives, however, teams remain optimistic that Mitchell could be had for the right price.

There’s more out of Utah:

  • As a result of the aforementioned Rudy Gobert deal, the Jazz have added several promising young current and future players, writes Ryan McDonald of the Deseret News. Auburn big man Walker Kessler, the No. 22 in the 2022 NBA draft, will arrive in Utah with potentially a more outsized role than had been anticipated for him with the Timberwolves.
  • Jazz Summer League wing Johnny Juzang is being held out of a team practice today following a car accident on Saturday, according to Eric Walden of the Salt Laker Tribune (Twitter link). Juzang, a former UCLA swingman who went undrafted in 2022, is set to join Jazz on a two-way deal.
  • NBA veteran Tacko Fall, currently playing on the Jazz’s Summer League team, informs Eric Walden of the Salt Lake Tribune (Twitter link) that Evan Bradds, formerly a Player Enhancement Staff member with the Celtics, has been hired as an assistant coach under new Jazz head coach Will Hardy.

NBA G League Announces 2021/22 All-NBAGL Teams

Rockets two-way player Trevelin Queen, who was named the NBA G League MVP and the G League Finals MVP this season, has added two more honors to his impressive 2021/22 résumé.

Queen headlined this year’s All-NBA G League First Team and also earned a spot on the NBAGL’s All-Defensive team, as the league announced today in a press release.

The complete list of the 2021/22 All-NBA G League teams, along with the All-Rookie and All-Defensive squads, is below. Players who finished the season on NBA contracts are noted with an asterisk (*), while those on two-way contracts are noted with a caret (^).

All-NBAGL First Team

All-NBAGL Second Team

All-NBAGL Third Team

NBAGL All-Rookie Team

  • Charles Bassey (Delaware Blue Coats) *
  • Luka Garza (Motor City Cruise) *
  • Carlik Jones (Texas Legends)
  • Mac McClung (South Bay Lakers) ^
  • Micah Potter (Sioux Falls Skyforce)

NBAGL All-Defensive Team

  • Charles Bassey (Delaware Blue Coats) *
  • Braxton Key (Delaware Blue Coats) ^
  • Tacko Fall (Cleveland Charge)
  • Shaquille Harrison (Delaware Blue Coats)
  • Trevelin Queen (Rio Grande Valley Vipers) ^

All 19 players who earned a spot on one of the G League’s All-NBAGL, All-Rookie, or All-Defensive teams this year were on some form of standard, two-way, or 10-day NBA contract during the 2021/22 season.

Of those 19, Tillman is the only player who has yet to make his NBA debut, as he didn’t appear in any games after signing a 10-day deal with Atlanta in December.

Cavs Sign Brandon Goodwin To Two-Way Deal, Release Tacko Fall

The Cavaliers have signed point guard Brandon Goodwin on a two-way contract and release 7’5″ two-way center Tacko Fall to complete the deal, per Shams Charania of The Athletic (Twitter link).

Goodwin went undrafted out of Florida Gulf Coast in 2018 and spent a year with the Nuggets as a two-way player. He then joined the Hawks on a two-way contract in 2019/20, before being signed to a standard deal midway through the season.

The 26-year-old Goodwin earned a training camp deal with the Knicks at the start of the 2021/22 season. After New York waived Goodwin, he logged time with the team’s NBAGL affiliate, the Westchester Knicks. Goodwin subsequently signed a 10-day hardship exception deal with the Raptors but failed to see the floor.

The point guard first joined Cleveland on a 10-day hardship exception deal on New Year’s Eve 2021. Across 22.7 MPG in three games, the 6’0″ Goodwin is averaging 7.3 PPG, 4.7 APG, 3.7 RPG and 0.7 SPG.

The decision to retain Goodwin beyond his 10-day contract makes plenty of sense, as the 22-17 Cavaliers are currently strapped for backcourt talent. Cleveland lost guards Collin Sexton and Ricky Rubio with season-ending knee injuries earlier this year. Cleveland has gone 2-3 since Rubio went down with a torn ACL.

Thanks to the play of Darius Garland, Jarrett Allen, and Evan Mobley, the team has remained in the thick of the playoff hunt since, and is clearly looking to shore up its depth at the point guard position. The Cavaliers also recently traded for former four-time All-Star point guard Rajon Rondo.

Fall, 26, was in his first year as a Cavalier after two seasons in Boston. In 11 games with Cleveland, Fall averaged 1.1 PPG, 2.1 RPG and 0.5 BPG. His counting stats are more impressive with the Cavs’ G League affiliate, the Cleveland Charge. In five games with the Charge, Fall put up 18.6 PPG, 12.0 RPG and 3.4 BPG.

Eastern Notes: Barrett, Cousins, Fall, Wizards

RJ Barrett has exited the NBA’s health and safety protocols, the Knicks announced today (via Twitter). The news comes on the heels of Obi Toppin clearing the protocols on Wednesday night, a sign that the team is hopefully getting through the worst of its COVID-19 outbreak.

Assuming Barrett and Toppin pass the necessary cardiac tests, they could be back in the lineup as soon as tonight vs. Washington or Saturday vs. Atlanta. Five Knicks remain in the protocols for the time being, as our tracker shows.

Here’s more from around the Eastern Conference:

  • Earlier this week, Bucks center DeMarcus Cousins admitted he was still struggling to find his rhythm while getting “limited practice time (and) limited preparation” between games, as Jim Owczarski of The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel writes. Cousins, who signed with Milwaukee last month, logged a season-high 28 minutes on Wednesday and had his best game of the year, putting up 18 points and eight assists in a win over Houston.
  • Like Cousins in Milwaukee, Cavaliers center Tacko Fall has taken on a larger role this week due to various absences. Kelsey Russo of The Athletic takes a look at the unusual journey Fall took leading up to his first NBA start on Wednesday. Playing in Boston, where he began his NBA career, the 7’5″ center had four points and 10 rebounds in 19 minutes.
  • Trade talks across the NBA have been put on the back burner for now as teams focus on dealing with COVID-19 outbreaks and signing replacement players. However, those discussions figure to heat up in the coming weeks, prompting Chase Hughes of NBC Sports Washington to take an early look at potential trade deadline priorities for the Wizards. The team could use more shooting, more size, and a speedy point guard, says Hughes.

Cavs Convert Fall, Nembhard To Two-Way Deals; Waive Three Players

1:13pm: The Cavaliers have officially announced all the moves outlined below.

10:45am: The Cavaliers are signing center Tacko Fall to a two-way contract, Shams Charania of The Athletic tweets. The team is also converting RJ Nembhard‘s contract to a two-way deal, JD Shaw of Hoops Rumors tweets.

Additionally, Cleveland is trimming its roster by waiving Justin James, Kyle Guy and Mitch Ballock, Chris Fedor of the Cleveland Plain Dealer tweets. They are expected to join the Cleveland Charge once they clear waivers, Fedor adds.

Fall was signed to a non-guaranteed contract in early September. The 7’6” big man appeared in three preseason games and made enough of an impression to earn the two-way deal.  He spent two seasons with the Celtics, averaging 2.7 PPG, 2.6 RPG and 0.9 BPG in 26 games.

Nembhard was also signed to a non-guaranteed contract in early September. He played for Miami’s summer league team after going undrafted. Nembhard was a redshirt junior for TCU in 2020/21 and averaged 15.7 PPG, 4.3 RPG, and 4.0 APG in 24 games (34.9 MPG).

Brodric Thomas, who had been a two-way deal last season, was waived this week.

Cavaliers Sign Tacko Fall To Non-Guaranteed Deal

SEPTEMBER 2: The Cavs have made the signing official, per RealGM’s transactions log.

AUGUST 31: The Cavaliers have come to an agreement with free agent center Tacko Fall, tweets Shams Charania of The Athletic.

The deal is for one year and is non-guaranteed. The 7’5″ center spent two seasons with the Celtics, averaging 2.7 PPG, 2.6 RPG and 0.9 BPG in just 26 games total. He became something of a cult hero in Boston, with the fans and his teammates alike.

The Cavaliers have 14 roster spots currently taken, albeit just 10 on fully guaranteed deals, so it’s likely this deal is a training camp try-out.

The Cavaliers have no shortage of big men, especially after the sign-and-trade for Lauri Markkanen, but Fall could be a solid insurance policy, given the injury concerns between Markkanen and Kevin Love.