Raul Neto

NBA G League Assignments/Recalls: 11/14/18

Here are Wednesday’s assignments and recalls from around the NBA:

  • The Bucks have assigned Sterling Brown to their G League affiliate, the Wisconsin Herd, per the team’s website. Brown, who has appeared in seven of the Bucks’ 13 games so far this season, is averaging 2.1 points and 1.4 rebounds in 5.8 minutes per game.
  • According to the team’s official Twitter account (link), the Celtics assigned rookie big man Robert Williams to their G League affiliate, the Maine Red Claws. In his lone career G League contest thus far, Williams scored 11 points and grabbed 10 rebounds.
  • The Jazz have recalled Raul Neto one day after assigning him to the Salt Lake City Stars while he works his way back from injury, the team tweeted this evening.

NBA G League Assignments/Recalls: 11/13/18

Here are Tuesday’s assignments and recalls from around the NBA:

Raul Neto Out At Least Two More Weeks

Jazz point guard Raul Neto still isn’t ready to return, according to the team, which announced today (via Twitter) that Neto will be re-evaluated in two weeks. He continues to battle a right hamstring injury.

For Neto, who was expected to add depth to a point guard depth chart that also features Ricky Rubio and Dante Exum, being re-evaluated in two weeks is becoming a common refrain. Utah made similar announcements on September 24 and again on October 10, so there’s certainly no guarantee that the 26-year-old will be ready to return in 14 days.

Neto, who averaged 12.1 minutes per contest in 41 games for the Jazz last season, re-signed with the team over the summer inking a two-year, $4.3MM contract. The second year of that deal is non-guaranteed, so if Neto is nagged by health issues throughout the season and/or fails to reclaim a rotation spot, he’d be a release candidate next summer.

Northwest Notes: Westbrook, Schroder, Neto, Harkless

Thunder guard Russell Westbrook is progressing in his rehab from knee surgery, though it’s unclear when he’ll make his return to the court, Royce Young of ESPN.com writes.

Westbrook underwent arthroscopic surgery in his right knee on September 12, and the former NBA Most Valuable Player is still unable to participate in full-contact drills. His status for Tuesday’s season-opener against Golden State is uncertain.

“Every day for him, he feels better and better,” coach Billy Donovan said after a team practice Thursday. “I don’t want to say [if he’ll be ready for Tuesday]. I know you guys want to know that, but that’s too far out and there will be a lot of things that will go into that decision.

“There’s certain things he’ll have to go through to get himself fully cleared to play, but he’s certainly moving in the right direction and he’s worked really hard at his rehab to get himself back.”

Despite not being able to play with full contact, Westbrook has participated in portions of team practices this month. The Thunder hope he can make his return next week, but they refuse to rush the process.

“He’s been in controlled situations that the medical staff has allowed him to do,” Donovan said. “And hopefully with the way he responds physically after going through a workout, they’ll be able to add a little bit more and more.”

There’s more notes out of the Northwest Division:

Contract Notes: Jokic, Gordon, Nurkic, Jazz

Nuggets center Nikola Jokic didn’t technically sign a maximum-salary contract when he re-upped with the club this summer, but he can increase his 2018/19 earnings to the maximum if he helps lead Denver to postseason success.

As ESPN’s Bobby Marks details (subscription required), Jokic is one of several NBA players with incentives in their contracts for the coming season. In Jokic’s case, he’s currently about $862K shy of his maximum salary, but he can earn $431K if the Nuggets advance to the playoffs, and another $431K if they win in the first round.

Here are a few more details from Marks on this season’s incentives and bonuses:

  • Aaron Gordon has a potential path to an All-Star nod in an Eastern Conference that lost more top talent this offseason. Gordon’s new contract with the Magic calls for a $500K bonus if he’s named an All-Star, per Marks. He could also further increase his earnings by being named to the All-NBA and All-Defense teams at season’s end.
  • Jusuf Nurkic can earn an extra $1.25MM this season if he appears in 70 games and the Trail Blazers crack the 50-win threshold, according to Marks. Nurkic played in 79 games last season, but because Portland only had 49 wins, this incentive is considered unlikely and doesn’t currently count against Nurkic’s cap hit.
  • Davis Bertans has to meet several criteria in order to earn a $250K bonus on his new contract with the Spurs — the veteran forward must play in 70 games, make 165 three-pointers, and average 6.5 defensive rebounds per 36 minutes, as Marks details.
  • Dante Exum, Raul Neto, and Derrick Favors all have incentives on their new deals with the Jazz, with a focus on games played — they all must appear in at least 67 games to start earning their bonuses. Favors, in particular, has plenty riding on his performance, as he can earn $2.8MM in incentives. Of those incentives, $900K are considered likely and already count against his cap charge.
  • Marks also notes that several players will have a chance to become eligible for super-max contracts with their current clubs if they make All-NBA teams this season. That list includes Anthony Davis (Pelicans), Draymond Green (Warriors), Klay Thompson (Warriors), Damian Lillard (Trail Blazers), and Kemba Walker (Hornets). Additionally, Devin Booker‘s new extension with the Suns would start at 27.5% of the cap if he’s named to the All-NBA Third Team, 28.5% if he’s named to the Second Team, and 30% for First Team.

Injury Updates: Porzingis, Booker, Cousins, Neto

Kristaps Porzingis offered an update on his condition at the Knicks‘ Media Day, but there’s still no timetable for him to start playing again, relays the Associated Press.

Porzingis has been doing some light running, but not sprinting, as he continues to recover from a torn ACL he suffered in February. The Knicks are being cautious with the rehab process and don’t want him to return to action until they are sure he is fully ready.

Porzingis adds that he isn’t concerned about getting a contract extension done quickly. He will have to wait until next summer for an extension if a deal isn’t reached before the start of the season.

There’s more injury news to pass along:

  • Devin Booker got sutures removed from his right hand last week and is using a splint during workouts, Suns GM Ryan McDonough said today, per Gina Mizell of The Athletic (Twitter link). The team is still hoping Booker can be ready for opening night.
  • The Warriors plan to re-evaluate free agent addition DeMarcus Cousins again in four weeks, tweets Mark Medina of The San Jose Mercury News. Team president Bob Myers is happy with the progress Cousins has made, saying, “We won’t rush him. But we also won’t hold him back.”
  • Jazz guard Raul Neto has been diagnosed with a right hamstring injury and will be re-evaluated in two weeks, according to a tweet from the team.
  • Hawks guard Justin Anderson is still recovering from surgery in late June to address recurring tibial stress syndrome in his left leg and won’t be ready for the start of training camp, the team announced on its website. Dewayne Dedmon will also be held out as he recovers from an avulsion fracture in his left ankle. He is in his second week of weight-bearing rehab work. Daniel Hamilton is taking a non-surgical approach to a torn rotator cuff and his progress will be reviewed in a week. Jeremy Lin has recovered from the ruptured patella tendon that caused him to miss nearly all of last season and will start camp with limited restrictions. Rookie Omari Spellman has soft tissue inflammation in his left shin and will be held out for the next seven to 10 days.

Contract Details: Curry, Evans, Exum, Favors

Since the July moratorium lifted on Friday, more and more official contract details are surfacing for completed deals. Eric Pincus of Basketball Insiders and Bleacher Report has been relaying many of those details on his Twitter feed as he updates his salary database at Basketball Insiders, so we’ll pass along several of his notes on 2018’s free agent and draft pick signings.

Via Pincus, here are some specifics on the deals completed within the last several days:

Free agent signings:

  • Seth Curry‘s agreement with the Trail Blazers was originally reported as a two-year contract with a second-year player option, but it appears to just be a one-year, $2.795MM deal (Twitter link).
  • The Pacers‘ deal with Tyreke Evans has a cap hit of $12.4MM, which includes $100K in likely incentives (Twitter link).
  • Dante Exum can technically only earn the full $33MM on his three-year deal with the Jazz if he maxes out his incentives. The base value of the deal is $9.6MM per year, but it can drop to $9.1MM annually or increase to $11MM depending on his bonuses (Twitter link).
  • Derrick Favors can earn up to $18.8MM per year in his deal with the Jazz, or as little as $16MM annually (Twitter link). The cap hit for now is $16.9MM per year, with a July 6 guarantee date for year two.
  • Raul Neto‘s pact with the Jazz also includes modest incentives — he has an annual cap charge of $2.15MM, which can increase or decrease by $50K depending on his bonuses (Twitter link). Neto’s second year has a July 6 guarantee date.
  • Isaiah Briscoe‘s agreement with the Magic is a three-year, minimum-salary contract with a $500K guarantee in year one (Twitter link). It uses part of Orlando’s mid-level exception.

Draft pick signings:

  • The Suns signed No. 31 pick Elie Okobo to a deal that starts at $1.2MM, then is worth the minimum for the next three years (Twitter link). Two seasons are guaranteed, with a non-guaranteed third year and a fourth-year team option.
  • Devonte’ Graham‘s three-year deal with the Hornets is worth approximately $4.07MM (Twitter link). The first two years are guaranteed for the 34th overall pick, who was signed using part of Charlotte’s mid-level exception.
  • The Magic‘s three-year contract with No. 35 pick Melvin Frazier starts at $1.05MM and is guaranteed for two years, with a third-year team option (Twitter link). It also uses part of Orlando’s mid-level exception.
  • Gary Trent Jr., the 37th overall pick in the draft, got a fully guaranteed three-year deal from the Trail Blazers (Twitter link). Although all three years are worth the minimum salary, Portland had to use part of its mid-level exception to go more than two years for Trent.
  • The Lakers‘ deal with No. 39 pick Isaac Bonga starts at $1MM and includes two guaranteed seasons (Twitter link).

Northwest Notes: Udoh, Thunder, Tolliver, Blazers

The Jazz have been relatively generous during free agency so far this summer compared to most teams, handing out a two-year, $36MM contract to forward Derrick Favors, agreeing to a three-year, $33MM deal with backup guard Dante Exum, and reaching terms on a two-year, $4MM pact with seldom-used guard Raul Neto.

Furthermore, Utah has already guaranteed the 2018/19 salary of Thabo Sefolosha, who was limited to only 39 games last season. As such, it would appear that the Jazz are intent on sticking with their 2017/18 roster for now, which means that both Jonas Jerebko and Ekpe Udoh can be cautiously optimistic while waiting for their 2018/19 salary to become guaranteed.

Udoh in particular, who averaged 2.6 points, 2.4 rebounds and 1.2 blocks in 63 games for the Jazz last season, and whose $3.36MM salary becomes fully guaranteed if he remains on Utah’s roster past July 9, is trying to remain positive while awaiting Utah’s decision on his future, writes Eric Woodyard of the Deseret News.

“You know, we’ll see what happens,” Udoh told the Deseret News. “I’m grateful. I’m getting great workouts at the facility. I’ve been here pretty much since the season has been over outside of a couple trips, but I’ve just been getting in good work.”

Per Woodyard, Udoh is excited and prepared to return in a Jazz uniform next season, but also understands the business-like nature of the NBA.

“It’s gonna be a fun season,” Udoh said. “The West has gotten better but we’ve gotten better and we’re gonna be the same team next year. Starting last year, you didn’t know what you were going to get with so many new pieces, but now we’ll be ready from the beginning.”

There’s more from the Northwest Division:

  • Brett Dawson of The Oklahoman writes that although Paul George did in fact want to be a Laker at this time last year, he is now happy in Oklahoma City after signing a four-year, $137MM max contract with the Thunder on the eve of free agency.
  • According to Jerry Zgoda of the Star TribuneTimberwolves’ free-agent signee forward Anthony Tolliver chose a return to Minnesota over four other pursuing teams because of the familiarity he has for the franchise – he played for the Wolves from 2010 to 2012 – and because “(he) want(s) to win.”
  • While it’s probably a bit bold to get too excited about the free agent signing of a backup, Berry Tramel of The Oklahoman writes that the addition of 24 year-old center Nerlens Noel on a minimum-salary deal is a low-risk, high-reward move by the Thunder.
  • Per Joe Freeman of The Oregonian, a couple of key subplots have emerged for the Trail Blazers during the team’s summer league minicamp. First, it’s an opportunity for Portland to get a first-hand look at rookies Anfernee Simons and Gary Trent Jr. in an NBA practice. Moreover, both Wade Baldwin and Georgios Papagiannis are fighting for their NBA lives while Jake Layman looks to secure a more prominent role for next season.

Jazz Sign Raul Neto To Two-Year Deal

JULY 6, 11:48am: Neto’s new contract is now official, the Jazz announced on their website.

JULY 3, 3:37pm: The Jazz have reached a contract agreement with free agent point guard Raul Neto, reports ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski (via Twitter). According to Shams Charania of Yahoo Sports (via Twitter), Neto will sign a new two-year, $4.4MM contract with Utah. The second year will be non-guaranteed, tweets Jeff Zillgitt of USA Today.

Neto, 26, served as a backup point guard in Utah during the 2017/18 season, averaging 4.5 PPG and 1.8 APG in 41 games (12.1 MPG). He was a restricted free agent this summer after receiving a qualifying offer from the Jazz last week, and will be re-signed using his Bird rights.

Neto will be behind Ricky Rubio on the depth chart, and Donovan Mitchell will see plenty of ball-handling opportunities for Utah as well. Neto’s role will be determined in part on Dante Exum‘s status — the former fifth overall pick is also a restricted free agent, and the Jazz would like to re-sign him. If Exum returns, Neto’s minutes going forward will remain very limited.

The Jazz, who entered the offseason focused on retaining their own free agents, have now reached agreements with both Neto and Derrick Favors. Both contracts include non-guaranteed second years, allowing Utah to maximize its cap flexibility for 2019.

Free Agent Rumors: Neto, Wizards, J. Green, Parker

The Jazz, who have reached an agreement with Derrick Favors and are hoping to re-sign a couple other key free agents, met with point guard Raul Neto on Monday, league sources tell Tony Jones of The Salt Lake Tribune (Twitter link). Utah has expressed interest in bringing back RFA point guards Neto and Dante Exum.

With Favors returning, Thabo Sefolosha‘s salary guaranteed for 2018/19, and Grayson Allen now locked up to his rookie contract, the Jazz have 10 players on guaranteed deals so far for next season. If the club intends to keep its remaining three non-guaranteed players – Ekpe Udoh, Jonas Jerebko, and Royce O’Neale – that would leave just two open roster spots for Exum and Neto. I would guess that with Favors back, Udoh isn’t a lock to be retained, but we’ll see what the Jazz have in mind in the coming days.

Here are a few more free agent notes and rumors from around the NBA:

  • After losing Mike Scott to the Clippers, the Wizards are on the lookout for frontcourt help and have been in touch with free agent forward Jeff Green, reports TNT’s David Aldridge (Twitter link).
  • A report from French outlet L’Equipe (hat tip to Amico Hoops) suggests that Tony Parker isn’t necessarily a lock to return to the Spurs, with the Nuggets and Hornets among the “five or six” teams that could make a play for the veteran point guard.
  • While Marcus Smart‘s free agency could linger due to his restricted status, retaining him remains the Celtics‘ top offseason priority, tweets Adam Himmelsbach of The Boston Globe.
  • Former fifth overall pick Thomas Robinson didn’t play in the NBA last season, but he’s receiving some interest from teams this offseason, per Alex Kennedy of HoopsHype. Kennedy tweets that the Bucks, Clippers, Wizards, and Suns have all expressed some level of interest in the veteran power forward.