Terry Taylor

Pacers Sign Terry Taylor To Two-Way Contract, Cut DeJon Jarreau

The Pacers are signing undrafted rookie Terry Taylor to a two-way contract, agents BJ Bass and Cam Brennick tell Shams Charania of The Athletic (Twitter link).

The team has confirmed the move, announcing in a press release that former Houston Cougars guard DeJon Jarreau has been waived to open up a two-way slot for Taylor, whose deal is official.

A 6’5″ wing, Taylor had a big senior year in 2020/21 for Austin Peay, averaging 21.6 points and 11.1 rebounds in 27 games (37.0 MPG). He saw his three-point percentage dip to just 27.9%, but he made 35.5% of his attempts from beyond the arc in his first three college seasons and still made 52.1% of his total shots from the floor as a senior.

Taylor’s performance in college earned him a training camp invitation from the Pacers. While he didn’t earn a spot on the regular season roster, he joined the Fort Wayne Mad Ants – Indiana’s G League affiliate – and has gotten off to a great start, averaging 19.5 PPG, 12.1 RPG, 2.3 APG, and 1.3 BPG on 67.9% shooting through 11 games (33.5 MPG).

Jarreau, meanwhile, has put up more modest numbers in 10 games (20.9 MPG) for Fort Wayne, recording 9.7 PPG, 4.3 APG, and 3.9 RPG with a .407/.381/.588 shooting line. He appeared briefly in just one game for Indiana.

Duane Washington holds the other two-way spot on the Pacers’ roster.

Pacers Sign Three Players, Waive Three

The Pacers are doing some last-minute roster shuffling ahead of the regular season deadline, announcing on Friday night that they’ve waived three players and signed three more to fill their roster spots.

According to the team’s press release, camp invitees Keifer Sykes, Terry Taylor, and Nate Hinton are out, while Justin Anderson, Bennie Boatwright, and Derek Culver are in.

It’s unlikely that any of the six players will actually make the Pacers’ 15-man regular season roster — Anderson, Boatwright, and Culver will probably be released shortly.

They are, however, all good bets to play for the Fort Wayne Mad Ants, Indiana’s G League team. They’re receiving Exhibit 10 deals in order to secure their G League rights and/or ensure that they’re eligible for bonuses of up to $50K if they spend at least 60 days with the Mad Ants.

Teams are only eligible to carry up to four “affiliate players” on their G League rosters, but some of the six players involved in this series of transactions will qualify as returning-rights players, rather than affiliate players. Last month, Fort Wayne acquired the G League returning rights for Anderson (from the Long Island Nets) and Boatwright (from the Memphis Hustle).

As for the Pacers’ NBA roster, it appears mostly set, with 12 players on guaranteed contracts, a pair on two-way deals, and non-guaranteed players Kelan Martin, Oshae Brissett, and Brad Wanamaker still sticking around for now. Indiana could carry all three into the regular season, or waive one and begin the season with 14 players on standard contracts.

Pacers Announce Three Signings

The Pacers have officially confirmed three previously-reported signings, announcing today in a press release that they’ve added Duane Washington, Terry Taylor, and Keifer Sykes to their roster. Washington received a two-way deal, while Taylor and Sykes are believed to have signed Exhibit 10 contracts.

Washington, a 6’3″ shooting guard, went undrafted last Thursday out of Ohio State. A second-generation NBA pro, Washington is the son of former journeyman shooting guard Duane Washington Sr. and the nephew of five-time Lakers champion point guard (and current Sparks coach) Derek Fisher. Our full story on his two-way deal is here.

Taylor, a 6’5″ wing, who worked out for more than half the teams in the NBA during the pre-draft process, had a big senior year in 2020/21 for Austin Peay, averaging 21.6 points and 11.1 rebounds in 27 games (37.0 MPG). The full story on his training camp agreement with Indiana is here.

An undrafted free agent out of Green Bay in 2015, Sykes has spent most of the last several seasons playing in international leagues. The 27-year-old point guard participated in this summer’s The Basketball Tournament and hit the game-winning three-point shot on Tuesday night to clinch the title and the $1MM prize for Boeheim’s Army (video link). Our story on his Exhibit 10 deal is here.

Indiana’s roster is now officially at 16 players, with deals for T.J. McConnell, Torrey Craig, and Isaiah Jackson still to be finalized and Cassius Stanley‘s contract situation still to be resolved (he’s a two-way RFA). Teams can carry up to 20 players in the offseason.

Pacers To Sign Terry Taylor To Camp Deal

The Pacers and undrafted guard Terry Taylor have agreed to a training camp deal, reports ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski (Twitter link). Woj doesn’t provide any additional info on the agreement, but Taylor may end up signing an Exhibit 10 contract, which is common for camp invitees.

Taylor, who worked out for more than half the teams in the NBA during the pre-draft process, had a big senior year in 2020/21 for Austin Peay, averaging 21.6 points and 11.1 rebounds in 27 games (37.0 MPG).

The 6’5″ wing saw his three-point percentage dip to just 27.9%, but he made 35.5% of his attempts from beyond the arc in his first three college seasons and still made 52.1% of his total shots from the floor as a senior.

Taylor’s deal with Indiana can become official anytime after the NBA’s 2021/22 league year begins next week.

Draft Notes: Mann, Taylor, Cunningham, Hornets

NBA draft prospect Tre Mann expressed confidence that he’s the best guard in this year’s class, as relayed by Michael Scotto of HoopsHype.

Mann, 20, spent the past two seasons at Florida. He held per-game averages of 16 points, 5.6 rebounds and 3.5 assists during the 2020/21 campaign, shooting 46% from the floor and 40% from deep.

“I think I’m the best guard in the draft, top-five for sure,” Mann said.

When asked about his strengths and weaknesses ahead of Thursday’s event, he gave a fair outlook.

“My strengths are my ability to create for myself and my teammates, my craftiness, and my ability to shoot off the dribble on the three-point line or a couple of steps behind the line,” Mann said. “The weaknesses that I think I need to work on are the simpler plays, like making the simple reads out of the ball screens and trying to make the game as easy as possible.”

Here are some other draft-related notes to pass along:

Draft Notes: Green Room Invites, Makur, Taylor, Draft Intel

The NBA has finalized the list of 20 prospects who will be invited to the Green Room on draft night, writes ESPN’s Jonathan Givony. While 15 of the names had already been reported, the final five players were identified over the last two days: Chris Duarte, Cameron Thomas, Isaiah Jackson, Alperen Sengun and Ziaire Williams will round out the group.

While an invitation to the Green Room is no guarantee of being drafted in the top 20, the decision is considered to be an indication of teams’ thinking, as the invitations are determined through a series of conversations with general managers and a voting process where teams vote on the 25 prospects most likely to have their name called first, Givony writes.

We have more news from around the draft world:

  • Howard University’s Makur Maker has withdrawn from the draft, tweets draft analyst Chad Ford. The 6’11 forward flashed versatility at the NBA Combine, but his draft stock was still hazy. Because he missed the NCAA’s withdrawal deadline, Maker will likely pursue professional options, whether in the G League, Australia’s NBL, or elsewhere.
  • Terry Taylor worked out with the Bucks yesterday and the Nuggets today, tweets Adam Zagoria of Forbes. Taylor has workouts lined up with the Nets, Cavaliers and Mavericks this week, and already worked out for the Knicks, Warriors, Kings, Pacers, Grizzlies, Bulls, Spurs and Pelicans. The 6’5″ wing led the country in double-doubles, Zagoria notes.
  • Sports Illustrated’s Jeremy Woo released his latest mock draft today, sharing some pieces of intel gathered from sources. Within his mock, Woo confirms that the prevailing notion is that the Rockets prefer Jalen Green to Evan Mobley, that the Thunder are being increasingly linked to James Bouknight, that the Magic covet Scottie Barnes, and that Jonathan Kuminga‘s range seems to be settling around six-to-eight, rather than being a top-five pick.

Northwest Notes: Lillard, Blazers, Hernangomez, Nuggets

While it doesn’t look at this point like the Trail Blazers will seriously explore Damian Lillard trades this offseason, that doesn’t mean they’re not getting calls about their All-NBA point guard. Front office sources tell Kevin O’Connor of The Ringer that the Heat, Kings, Knicks, Rockets, and Sixers have been the most aggressive suitors for Lillard as of late.

With no Lillard trade request imminent, the Blazers are more likely to pursue upgrades around the star guard, though O’Connor notes that the team’s trade assets are somewhat limited. Portland doesn’t have any draft picks this year and rival teams aren’t particularly high on young players like Anfernee Simons and Nassir Little, according to O’Connor. The club’s best bet for a deal that reshapes the roster and increases its ceiling might involve CJ McCollum and Ben Simmons, O’Connor adds.

Here’s more from around the Northwest:

Central Notes: Pistons, Antetokounmpo, Tucker, Taylor

With the number one pick in the draft and a promising, newly re-made young core, this is a pivotal offseason for the Pistons, writes James L. Edwards III of The Athletic in a mailbag.

Within the piece, Edwards discusses the likelihood of the Pistons selecting Cade Cunningham (very likely), the fit between Cunningham and last year’s top selection (French point guard Killian Hayes), 2021 free agency plans, what the Pistons are likely to do with restricted free agent Hamidou Diallo, Isaiah Stewart‘s status as a starting center, Jerami Grant, and much more.

We have more from the Central Division:

  • David Aldridge of The Athletic profiles Bucks star Giannis Antetokounmpo‘s dramatic return from injury and resumption of his regular season dominance. He talks to two-time NBA champion Isiah Thomas, among others, about what Antetokounmpo has done in the three games since his return. “He’s been the most inspiring player during these playoffs, while (Chris) Paul has been the sentimental player we all root for and want his career to end with a ring,” Thomas said in a text to Aldridge.
  • Tim MacMahon and Tim Bontemps of ESPN examine the journey Bucks forward P.J. Tucker has taken from the Ukrainian SuperLeague to the NBA Finals. One of the keys to Tucker’s resilience and fortitude, write MacMahon and Bontemps, was his ability to form connections in the locker room. “We had a team with an old Serbian guy who didn’t speak particularly good English, and P.J. made a connection with him and had a great friendship with him,” said former coach Chris Fleming. “The U.S. players, the young German players, he had an ability to reach everybody.”
  • The Bulls worked out Terry Taylor on Monday, tweets Hoops Rumors’ JD Shaw. The 6’5″ guard averaged over 20 PPG and 11 RPG over his final two seasons at Austin Peay State University.

Kings Notes: Haliburton, Draft Workouts, Wagner

Kings guard Tyrese Haliburton is enjoying his experience with the U.S. Select Team, which is giving him a chance to test his skills against some of the NBA’s best players, writes Jason Jones of The Athletic. Haliburton had previous experience in the international format as part of the USA under-19 National Team while at Iowa State.

Haliburton has fully recovered from the hyperextended left knee that brought an early end to his first NBA season. Although he played just 58 games, he was an All-Rookie First Team selection and finished third in the Rookie of the Year voting. He has been working out in Sacramento for the past month and now gets to see how his expanded game fares against elite competition.

“For me to get out and use that stuff against other guys and see it work against them in live action, it helps a lot,” Haliburton said. “And just kind of seeing what other guys are working on at the same time, how other guys are improving. Just taking bits and pieces of that, putting that into my training and things like that.”

There’s more from Sacramento:

Central Notes: Tucker, Bucks, Pacers, Workouts, Pistons

P.J. Tucker is used to being a part of contending teams, but this season took a detour before he landed in Milwaukee, notes Eric Nehm of The Athletic. Tucker had to endure a lot of losing in Houston after the Rockets dealt James Harden in mid-January. He was stuck in a rebuilding situation until the Bucks traded for him in March.

“I thought about the stuff I was doing with Houston this year, this season has just been a long year for me,” Tucker said. “To go from being a top team in the West to falling apart instantly and being the last one left (in Houston) and everything I went through with that, the transition, it was just a lot this season.”

Tucker has enjoyed his time with the Bucks and is looking forward to competing for his first NBA championship, but isn’t sure whether his time in Milwaukee will extend beyond this season, as Nehm writes.

“I’m really excited to be able to pick where I want to go,” Tucker said. “The (contract) extension thing was for a different period of time. We didn’t even talk about that when I came to Milwaukee. There was no extension. I just wanted to come play and get a chance to do what I do and that was it. I just wanted to have a chance.”

Here’s more from around the Central:

Luke Adams contributed to this post.