Raul Neto

Cavaliers, Raul Neto Agree To One-Year Deal

Free agent point guard Raul Neto is signing with the Cavaliers, reports Shams Charania of The Athletic (Twitter link). Neto will receive a one-year, minimum-salary contract, according to Chris Fedor of Cleveland.com (Twitter link).

Neto, 30, spent the last seasons in D.C. as a backup point guard for the Wizards and acquitted himself well, averaging 8.1 PPG, 2.7 APG, and 2.2 RPG on .465/.349/.819 shooting in 134 total games (20.7 MPG). The seven-year veteran previously spent time with the Jazz and Sixers.

The Cavaliers reached an agreement on Friday to bring back veteran point guard Ricky Rubio to back up All-Star Darius Garland, but Rubio is recovering from a torn ACL and is unlikely to be ready to play this fall.

While Rubio works his way back, Neto should get a chance to be Garland’s primary backup. He’ll presumably shift a spot down the depth chart when Rubio returns.

In addition to agreeing to terms with Rubio and Neto today, the Cavaliers struck a minimum-salary deal with center Robin Lopez, as they continue to add veteran depth to complement their core.

Cavaliers Rumors: Sexton, LeVert, Trade Targets, More

Chris Fedor of Cleveland.com recently spoke to Michael Scotto about a number of Cavaliers-related topics for the latest edition of the HoopsHype podcast.

Guard Collin Sexton, whose season ended prematurely after suffering a torn meniscus in his left knee just 11 games into the season, will be an interesting player to watch this summer. Sexton will be a restricted free agent once Cleveland tenders him a $7,228,449 qualifying offer. As a restricted free agent, the Cavs will have the ability to match any offer sheet for the 23-year-old, and since he’s coming off an injury and not many teams will have cap space to spend on free agents, a reunion seems likely.

When the Cavs were discussing a rookie scale extension with Sexton’s representatives last summer, the two sides floated a contract similar to the one Bogdan Bogdanovic received from Atlanta, which was four years and $72MM (with a player option in the final season), sources tell Fedor. However, he hears that the Cavs value Sexton in the $15-18MM per year range, while Sexton is seeking something closer to $18-22MM annually.

Although Sexton has undoubtedly been productive on the offense end, averaging 24.3 PPG, 3.1 RPG and 4.4 APG on .475/.371/.815 shooting in 2020/21, Fedor notes that there were questions about Sexton’s fit entering ’21/22, and his injury and the team’s success without him didn’t help his case. Given that he’s a 6’1″ shooting guard and a subpar defender, some teams view the former No. 8 pick as more of a sixth man than a starter, which could hurt his leverage in contract negotiations.

Scotto wonders if the Knicks or Wizards might be interested in Sexton, noting that both teams are looking for guards, but neither team has cap space. As Fedor previously reported, he hears that Cleveland has been curious if the Pistons might pursue Sexton, but sources tell Fedor that the Cavaliers don’t believe any team will end up offering him $20MM+ per season.

Here’s more from Scotto and Fedor:

  • Both the Cavs and Caris LeVert have expressed interest in reaching an extension this summer, and league executives tell Scotto that a shorter deal in the $19-21MM range might make sense for both sides. However, as Fedor observes, LeVert will be on an expiring $18.8MM contract in ’22/23, so if the Cavs don’t like the types of numbers Levert’s agents are throwing out, they could just wait it out and perhaps use him as trade bait next season.
  • Kevin Love improved his trade stock after a bounce-back, healthy season, and both Scotto and Fedor believe that his $28.9MM contract could be used as a trade chip if the team opts to pursue higher-paid veterans.
  • Noting Cleveland needs two-way wing scorers and a solid backup point guard for Darius Garland, Fedor hears the Cavs are interested in a number of veterans as potential trade targets: Bogdan Bogdanovic, Bojan Bogdanovic, Gordon Hayward, Tobias Harris, Harrison Barnes, Gary Trent Jr., Jerami Grant, Aaron Gordon, Andrew Wiggins, and Mike Conley.
  • Although there’s mutual interest in a reunion with Ricky Rubio, Fedor says money could become an obstacle to a deal being completed. Rubio is likely to miss at least a portion of next season after suffering a second torn ACL in his left knee in December, and using the mid-level exception to sign him would reduce the club’s flexibility while still leaving a hole on the roster until he returns.
  • Sources tell Fedor that if a deal with Rubio doesn’t come to fruition, the Cavs would be very open to using their full mid-level to sign Grizzlies backup point guard Tyus Jones, assuming Memphis lets him walk in free agency and he’s unable to get more money elsewhere. Other guards Cleveland might look into in free agency are Delon Wright, Goran Dragic, and Raul Neto. If the Cavs pivot to a wing/forward, Kyle Anderson, Jeremy Lamb, and T.J. Warren are possibilities, according to Fedor.
  • For potential draft candidates with the No. 14 pick, Fedor hears the Cavs are fans of Malaki Branham, Johnny Davis, Bennedict Mathurin, Tari Eason, TyTy Washington, and Jeremy Sochan. Those players range from Nos. 9-18 on ESPN’s big board, so some might not be available at 14.

Central Notes: Bagley, Jones, Wright, Dragic, Bulls

The Pistons are prepared to make a three-year offer to restricted free agent Marvin Bagley III, James Edwards III of The Athletic reports. He fit a need for an athletic big man, which is why they traded for him just before the deadline. However, Bagley may seek a shorter deal and test the open market if his stock rises, so that he can get a bigger payday.

We have more from the Central Division:

  • It has been reported that the Cavaliers would entertain a reunion with free agent guard Ricky Rubio. However, there are other options on the table to provide backcourt depth, according to Chris Fedor of the Cleveland Plain Dealer. The Cavs are also expected to show interest in several other unrestricted free agents, including Tyus Jones, Delon Wright, Raul Neto and Goran Dragic, says Fedor.
  • Which players should the Bulls retain and which ones should they shed? Darnell Mayberry of The Athletic takes a closer look at that topic in a player-by-player breakdown. Mayberry’s position on unrestricted free agent Zach LaVine? He’s one of the keepers.
  • DeMar DeRozan said he’s open to recruiting players to Chicago, but Bulls coach Billy Donovan said no matter what happens in the offseason, expectations need to be tempered, Jon Greenberg of The Athletic writes. “I think you have to be careful, and what I mean by that is, we got off to a really, really good start this year,” he said. “And it was really impressive to me with a new group that hadn’t had a lot of time together that they could jell and mesh the way they did. We’ll actually have to work harder going into this offseason and next year to even get back to this point.”

Wizards Notes: Porzingis, Bryant, Neto, Dinwiddie

Playing on Sunday for the first time since January 29, Kristaps Porzingis was on a minutes restriction in his Wizards debut upon returning from a right knee injury. However, he still managed to rack up 25 points in just over 21 minutes of action, playing a key role in the club’s victory over Indiana.

After the game, Porzingis was wearing a “perma-grin” when he spoke to reporters, according to Ava Wallace of The Washington Post. The big man said his move from Dallas to Washington has been “a smooth transition all the way around,” and drew praise from his new teammates who were playing alongside him for the first time.

“It was phenomenal,” forward Kyle Kuzma said. “Teams can’t just load up on me, having that extra guy out there that causes a lot of threat to defenses. With him, he’s so versatile. … There’s a reason why they call him ‘The Unicorn.'”

With Bradley Beal out for the rest of the season due to a wrist injury, Porzingis won’t have an opportunity to develop chemistry with the Wizards’ franchise player in the coming weeks. But he said on Sunday that he looks forward to getting that chance next season, assuming Beal – who can become a free agent this summer – remains in D.C.

[RELATED: Bradley Beal Leaning Toward Re-Signing With Wizards]

“I feel good here, honestly,” Porzingis said, per Wallace. “… Hopefully we’ll have Brad next season. I don’t know what the situation is, but I would love to play with him and Kuz and the rest of the guys. I think there are some exciting things to look forward to.”

Here’s more on the Wizards:

  • There may not be enough frontcourt minutes to go around with Porzingis in the rotation, Wallace writes for The Washington Post, noting that Thomas Bryant was a DNP-CD on Sunday. Bryant had previously played in 11 straight games, averaging 19.4 MPG during that stretch.
  • Wizards point guard Raul Neto missed the second half of Sunday’s win due to a left ankle sprain, per Wallace. Head coach Wes Unseld Jr. said after the game that Neto was moving well and will be considered day-to-day going forward. Typically a backup, Neto has been Washington’s starting point guard since the trade deadline and was playing well, averaging 11.5 PPG and 5.1 APG on .500/.429/.773 shooting in his last 10 games.
  • Responding to Spencer Dinwiddie‘s comments about his time in Washington and his claim that he was “kicked out the door,” Unseld and Kuzma both expressed a desire to move forward, according to Chase Hughes of NBC Sports Washington. “I’m not going to get into the accuracy of (Dinwiddie’s comments). It’s one of those things where, organizationally, it worked and he was aggressive early. We won a lot of games,” Unseld said. “Bottom-line, we had to make a change [at the trade deadline] and to get something we had to give up something. He’s a really talented guy, he’s playing well and he’s healthy. We look forward to seeing the benefit of that trade. It is what it is. I think it’s one of those things where we just have to move on and get past it.”

COVID Updates: Towns, Russell, Tucker, Hyland, Robinson, Bryant, Neto

Players around the NBA continue to enter and exit the league’s health and safety protocols. Here’s the latest update:

  • Timberwolves stars Karl-Anthony Towns and D’Angelo Russell have exited the protocols but won’t play against the Clippers due to reconditioning, the team’s PR department tweets.
  • Heat forward P.J. Tucker has been upgraded to questionable to play on Monday against Golden State after exiting the protocols, Anthony Chiang of the Miami Herald tweets.
  • Nuggets rookie Bones Hyland has exited the protocols and is expected to be available for Monday’s road game against Dallas, Mike Singer of the Denver Post tweets.
  • Knicks center Mitchell Robinson has cleared the protocols, the team’s PR department tweets.
  • Wizards center Thomas Bryant and guard Raul Neto have cleared the protocols, Josh Robbins of The Athletic tweets. However, Tremont Waters, who is on a 10-day hardship contract, has entered the protocols, Robbins adds in a separate tweet.
  • Bucks forward Jordan Nwora has entered the protocols and will miss Monday’s game against Detroit, Eric Nehm of The Athletic tweets.
  • Rockets big man Usman Garuba has entered the protocols, Jonathan Feigen of the Houston Chronicle tweets.

COVID Updates: Green, Brooks, Bazley, Augustin, Scrubb, Niang, Neto

The league continues to be ravaged by COVID positives with an increasing number of players entering the league’s health and safety protocols. Here are the latest updates:

  • Warriors star forward Draymond Green has entered the protocols, Shams Charania of The Athletic tweets. Green joined four other Warriors in the protocols heading into a pair of games against Denver.
  • The Grizzlies’ Dillon Brooks, De’Anthony Melton and Yves Pons all entered the protocols prior to their game against Sacramento on Sunday, the team’s PR department tweets. Memphis now has five players under those restrictions.
  • Darius Bazley became the first Thunder player in protocols, Andrew Schlecht of The Athletic tweets.
  • Veteran Rockets guard D.J. Augustin has entered the health and safety protocols, Jonathan Feigen of the Houston Chronicle tweets.
  • Clippers two-way player Jay Scrubb has been placed in the protocols, Andrew Greif of the Los Angeles Times tweets.
  • Wizards guard Raul Neto has joined two other Washington players in the protocols, Josh Robbins of The Athletic tweets.
  • Two Hornets regulars, Miles Bridges and P.J. Washington, are now in the protocols, the team’s PR department tweets.
  • On the positive side, Sixers forward Georges Niang has cleared the protocols, Keith Pompey of the Philadelphia Inquirer tweets.

Wizards Notes: Trade Negotiations, Dinwiddie, Kuzma, Neto, Avdija

The Nets, who recognized that Bradley Beal wanted the Wizards to acquire Spencer Dinwiddie and knew they had some leverage in sign-and-trade talks, initially asked Washington for a first-round pick, reports Fred Katz of The Athletic. When they were unsuccessful, the Nets tried to get Washington to part with Deni Avdija or Rui Hachimura, according to Katz.

However, the Wizards held firm in those negotiations and ended up keeping their top assets, instead sending Brooklyn a future second-round pick and a second-round pick swap. The Nets will also generate an $11.5MM trade exception in the deal.

As Katz details, the Wizards also had to sweeten the deal for the Lakers to convince them to loop the Russell Westbrook trade agreement into Washington’s acquisition of Dinwiddie via sign-and-trade, which is why L.A. will be receiving three second-round selections from the Wizards instead of just two.

Finally, Katz reports that the final version of the complex five-team trade will see the Wizards acquire cash considerations from the Pacers. The full breakdown of the trade agreement can be seen on our offseason trade tracker.

Here’s more on the Wizards:

  • For much of this week, there had been a league-wide assumption that the Wizards may end up rerouting Kyle Kuzma to a new team as part of the Dinwiddie deal, but Washington never included him in trade discussions, according to David Aldridge of The Athletic, who notes that the club has significantly improved its depth with this week’s roster moves.
  • Raul Neto‘s new deal with the Wizards will be a one-year, minimum-salary contract, according to Katz. Neto will join Dinwiddie and Aaron Holiday on the club’s point guard depth chart.
  • Although Deni Avdija has been cleared for basketball activities, he’s not playing for the Wizards in Summer League, writes Katz. The club wants to limit the risk of a setback for 2020’s lottery pick, who is recovering from a right fibular hairline fracture.

Raul Neto Re-Signs With Wizards

AUGUST 7: Neto has officially re-signed, according to a team press release.

“We are very pleased to bring Raul back after the career year he had for us last season,” Wizards GM Tommy Sheppard said. “He was one of our most consistent players with a toughness and tenacity on both ends of the floor that allowed him to lead our second unit and step in when called upon as a starter.”


AUGUST 4: The Wizards will re-sign free agent guard Raul Neto, tweets Shams Charania of The Athletic.

Neto, 29, signed with Washington as a free agent last November. He averaged 8.7 points, 2.4 rebounds and 2.3 assists as the primary backup to Russell Westbrook, but also made 22 starts. He figures to keep the same role this season now that the Wizards have a sign-and-trade agreement for Spencer Dinwiddie, although Aaron Holiday will be in the mix as well.

A native of Brazil, Neto was drafted in 2013, but didn’t come to the NBA until two years later. He spent his first four seasons with the Jazz before signing with the Sixers in 2019.

Free Agency Rumors: R. Jackson, Cavaliers, Suns, Wizards

Reggie Jackson is getting a lot of interest on the free agent market after his strong playoff run, but the Clippers remain hopeful about re-signing him, tweets Jordan Schultz of ESPN.

Jackson, 31, is coming off a strong season and playoff run with the Clippers — he topped 20 points nine times during the playoffs and shot a career-high 43.3% from three-point range last season. Los Angeles holds his Early Bird rights and can offer him a starting salary worth up to nearly $10.4MM.

Money will be a key factor in Jackson’s decision, according to Schultz (via Twitter), who adds that the Pelicans may be a “sleeper team” in the race for the veteran point guard. New Orleans general manager Trajan Langdon is known to be a fan of Jackson.

There’s more news on free agency:

Wizards Rumors: Westbrook, Beal, Dinwiddie, Neto, Kispert, Bryant

After spending the 2020/21 season with the Wizards, Russell Westbrook contemplated his future and found he had a growing desire to join the Lakers, according to Shams Charania and Fred Katz of The Athletic.

Westbrook’s desire to play for his hometown team intensified after he spent time with LeBron James and Anthony Davis at LeBron’s home about two weeks ago and the trio discussed the idea of teaming up, according to Broderick Turner of The Los Angeles Times. Turner says James and Davis spoke in that conversation about changing positions if it’s best for the team, with LeBron willing to play more frequently at the four, with AD at the five.

Westbrook recently informed the Wizards that he’d like to be dealt to the Lakers if they could find a trade that worked, per Charania and Katz, and the two teams did just that on Thursday, reaching an agreement on a blockbuster deal that will send Westbrook and two future second-round picks to L.A. for Montrezl Harrell, Kyle Kuzma, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, and No. 22 pick Isaiah Jackson. Washington is flipping Jackson to Indiana in a deal that will involve Aaron Holiday and No. 31 pick Isaiah Todd.

One of the primary reasons Westbrook originally wanted to play in D.C. was the presence of head coach Scott Brooks, according to Charania and Katz, who note that the star point guard lobbied for the Wizards to retain Brooks. After the team decided to part ways with Brooks, Westbrook preferred an established coach, sources tell The Athletic, but Washington opted for a first-timer in Wes Unseld Jr.

Here’s more on the Wizards and how the Westbrook trade affects their offseason:

  • Bradley Beal had no issues with the Westbrook deal and hasn’t expressed a desire to leave Washignton, sources tell Charania and Katz. For now, the Wizards remain confident they can keep the All-NBA guard long-term.
  • The Athletic’s duo reiterates that Spencer Dinwiddie is a potential Wizards target worth keeping an eye on, though a source tells Charania and Katz that the Nets wouldn’t be inclined to sign off on a sign-and-trade of Dinwiddie for Montrezl Harrell and Kyle Kuzma alone. Dinwiddie is also expected to receive interest from the Nets, Heat, Knicks, and Raptors, among others, per The Athletic.
  • Elsewhere on the point guard front, a reunion with Raul Neto is a possibility for the Wizards, sources tell Charania and Katz. The team also agreed to acquire Aaron Holiday, having grown “enamored” with him prior to the 2018 draft. Washington tried to trade for Holiday a year ago, according to The Athletic.
  • Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, one of Beal’s closest friends in the NBA, is the type of three-and-D player the Wizards have long sought, Charania and Katz observe.
  • Corey Kispert was 10th on the Wizards’ draft board entering Thursday night, and the team considered the possibility of trying to trade up for him before landing him at No. 15, write Charania and Katz.
  • The Wizards are preparing for Thomas Bryant to miss the start of the season as he continues to recover from an ACL tear. A source tells The Athletic the club is hoping Bryant will be able to return by December.