Vincent Collet

Atlantic Notes: Ntilikina, Adel, Raptors, Nets Staff

Frank Ntilikina‘s last coach in the French Pro A League told the enigmatic Knicks guard that he must build off his strong showing the FIBA World Cup, Mike Vorkunov of The Athletic reports. Vincent Collet knows this could be a make-or-break year for the lottery pick. Ntilikina helped Team France win a bronze medal in the tournament. “I told him he must keep going,” Collet told Vorkunov. “He must take advantage of the World Cup. When you start the camp, you must show them you are not the same Frank anymore.”

We have more from the Atlantic Division:

  • The Nets’ G League affiliate, the Long Island Nets, acquired the returning player rights to Deng Adel from Raptors 905, according to a team press release. Brooklyn had already signed the small forward to an Exhibit 10 contract. Adel played on a two-way contract with the Cavaliers during the second half of last season, then became a free agent. Long Island also acquired the returning player rights of JaKarr Sampson from the Windy City Bulls in the three-team G league swap. Sampson signed with the Pacers in August.
  • The five players who have partially guaranteed contracts with the Raptors will likely compete for three roster spots, as Blake Murphy of The Athletic details in an examination of the team’s salary cap situation. A dozen players have fully guaranteed deals and will almost assuredly make the squad. That leaves Cameron Payne, Isaiah Taylor, Dewan Hernandez, Chris Boucher and Malcolm Miller vying for the remaining spots on the 15-man opening night roster. Hernandez might have the biggest edge because he has the most guaranteed money and the most team-friendly contract long-term, Murphy adds.
  • Former NBA center Tiago Splitter has been promoted by the Nets to player development coach, according to a team press release. Splitter joined the organization after retiring in February 2018. The other staff additions or promotions included J.R. Holden (director of player personnel), Daniel Jones (physical performance coach) and Ryan Forehan-Kelly (player development coordinator).

Southwest Notes: Barea, Dedmon, Spurs, Mavs

Mavericks guard J.J. Barea aspires to be a basketball coach when his playing career over, and this summer he’ll get a shot to coach a team even before he retires a player. As Tim MacMahon of ESPN details, Barea has been hired as the head coach of Indios de Mayaguez in the Puerto Rican league for the rest of the season, which runs about another month. Barea received clearance from Mark Cuban, Rick Carlisle, and the Mavs, and is excited about the opportunity.

“This is my hometown team, where I played when I was getting started,” Barea said. “I think it’s going to be a great experience for myself and see if I really like this and see what I learn and if it can help me out for the future.”

Here’s more from around the Southwest:

  • Now that Dewayne Dedmon has opted out of his contract with the Spurs, what sort of offers may he be looking at as a free agent? According to Jabari Young of The San Antonio Express-News (Twitter link), he’s hearing from NBA GMs that Dedmon could land something in the range of three to four years at $8-10MM annually.
  • In the wake of last week’s Chris Paul rumors and speculation, Steve Kyler of Basketball Insiders takes a closer look at the Spurs‘ salary cap situation for this summer, explaining why it will be hard to create a big chunk of space, and identifying alternate targets.
  • A report from French outlet L’Equipe suggests that the Mavericks are exploring the possibility of adding SIG Strasbourg head coach Vincent Collet to their Summer League coaching staff. As Emiliano Carchia of Sportando observes, such a union would make a lot of sense if Dallas drafts point guard Frank Ntilikina ninth overall in June’s draft — Ntilikina has played under Collet in France for the last two seasons.
  • The Grizzlies announced today in a press release that director basketball operations Chris Makris will act as the GM for the team’s new D-League club, which will play in Southaven, Mississippi. Glynn Cyprien will coach the squad.