Tim Frazier

Blake Griffin Cleared For All Basketball Activities

Blake Griffin, who has yet to play this season due to hamstring and knee soreness, has been cleared by the Pistons‘ medical staff to participate in all basketball-related activities, the team announced today in a press release.

It’s not yet clear if Griffin will make his season debut on Friday in Indiana. According to the Pistons’ announcement, the star forward has “begun a return to game action progression” and is being considered day-to-day for now.

The Pistons have held their own despite being hit hard by injuries to start the season, posting a 4-5 record to date. That mark has been good for the No. 8 spot in the Eastern Conference and has been accomplished with Reggie Jackson missing seven games and Derrick Rose missing three, in addition to Griffin’s season-long absence.

Here’s more on the Pistons as they prepare for the return of their All-NBA forward:

  • Rose (hamstring) and Tim Frazier (shoulder) are continuing their treatment and rehab programs and are still considered day-to-day, according to the press release issued today by the Pistons.
  • With Griffin on the shelf, Christian Wood has gotten the opportunity to play regular minutes and has taken advantage of that opportunity, writes Rod Beard of The Detroit News. While Wood is subject to occasional defensive lapses, he has averaged 8.8 PPG and 4.3 RPG in just 15.1 minutes per contest. He’s looking to show the Pistons he deserves to have his 2019/20 salary fully guaranteed in January.
  • In case you missed it, Pistons forward Markieff Morris joined his brother Marcus Morris in signing with Roc Nation Sports for representation. Sam Permut will be their agent, tweets Liz Mullen of SportsBusiness Journal. The Morris twins were previously represented by Rich Paul and Klutch Sports.

Pistons Notes: Griffin, Jackson, Drummond, Doumbouya

The absence of Blake Griffin has led to offensive struggles for the Pistons’ starting unit during their first two games, Keith Langlois of the team’s website notes.

With Griffin sidelined for at least five games by hamstring and knee injuries, Markieff Morris has taken his spot in the lineup and Detroit got off to slow starts both times. The situation has become even more complicated due to Reggie Jackson‘s lower back tightness, which forced him to depart the 117-100 home loss to Atlanta early on Thursday.

Casey would prefer to limit the minutes of backup point guard Derrick Rose, who has averaged 23 points in his first two games with Detroit. If Jackson needs to miss games, Rose might have to start instead of the other point option, Tim Frazier, because the offense would have even further limitations without Rose’s playmaking.

We have more on the Pistons:

  • Center Andre Drummond can opt of his contract after the season and enter unrestricted free agency. His opening-night performance showed that he’s going all out in his walk year, Rod Beard of the Detroit News tweets. After he racked up 32 points and 23 rebounds in a season-opening victory at Indiana, Drummond responded to a question regarding Twitter #ContractYearDre by saying, “You know it.”
  • The fact that Griffin, who has a long injury history, started the season in street clothes could eventually lead the front office to hit the reset button, Vince Ellis of the Detroit Free Press opines. Dealing Griffin is doubtful given those injury woes and that his max deal takes him through the 2021/22 season. But trade speculation has increased recently due to the possibility of the season going sour quickly, Ellis adds.
  • First-round pick Sekou Doumbouya isn’t expected to have much of an impact in his rookie season, senior adviser Ed Stefanski told Beard during a Q&A session. The 18-year-old was inactive during the first two games due to a concussion. “When we drafted him, we said early publicly that he’s going to take time to come around and we didn’t put any timetable on it,” Stefanski said. “We made a point that this year, early in the season, we didn’t expect him to be in that rotation. If he keeps playing well when February and March roll around, who knows? We’re not going to throw him to the wolves.”

Eastern Notes: Bulls, Frazier, Oladipo, Stoudemire

Bulls head coach Jim Boylen is excited about the new players his team brought in this offseason, and he hopes that the additions of veterans Thaddeus Young and Tomas Satoransky alongside rookies Coby White and Daniel Gafford will allow him to deploy a deeper roster during the 2019/20 season, writes Sean Highkin of NBC Sports Chicago.

“What we (the Bulls) talked about is we wanted to bring in high character depth that could support our current roster,” Boylen said. “I also wanted a team that was duplicit and redundant so we could play the same way (when we go to our bench).”

Specifically, Boylen spoke on how the last couple years’ lack of depth caused the Bulls to rely on G League level players whenever stars like Zach LaVine or Lauri Markkanen were out with injury or sickness.

“We’ve struggled the last couple years to play on a night when we had injury or illness, where we had to change our style of play before the game. I don’t want that (for the Bulls). The good teams don’t have that.”

There’s more news out of the Eastern Conference tonight:

  • Veteran point guard Tim Frazier is eager for the opportunity that awaits him with the Pistons, writes Rod Beard of The Detroit News. While Frazier may see limited minutes behind Reggie Jackson and Derrick Rose, Detroit sees value in having a young and experienced option in case Jackson or Rose get hurt.
  • As Jackie MacMullan of ESPN explains, Pacers guard Victor Oladipo has seen his appreciation for basketball grow as he’s been sidelined with a ruptured right quadriceps tendon. Regarding watching his team’s performance during the playoffs last season, Oladipo said “It was so hard. It makes you appreciate the game more, your teammates more, even yourself more… Sometimes we don’t realize our own impact. You take it for granted. I won’t ever do that again.”
  • The Knicks do not plan on signing former NBA All-Star big man Amar’e Stoudemire to a contract for the 2019/20 season, reports Marc Berman of The New York Post. Stoudemire worked out for the Knicks and 14 other teams in Las Vegas on Monday. He last played in the NBA for the Heat during the 2015/16 season.

Pistons Sign Tim Frazier To One-Year Deal

JULY 6: The Pistons have officially signed Frazier to his new contract, the club announced today in a press release.

JULY 1: Point guard Tim Frazier has agreed to a one-year deal for approximately $2MM with the Pistons, according to Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports (Twitter link). It’ll be a veteran’s minimum deal, Rod Beard of The Detroit News confirms (via Twitter).

With Ish Smith and Jose Calderon becoming free agents, the Pistons were looking for depth in the backcourt. Smith agreed to a deal with the Wizards.

The Pistons reached a two-year agreement with Derrick Rose, who could start alongside Reggie Jackson or play a sixth-man role. Rose’s deal will eat up most of the team’s mid-level exception, but the club still has a little of that MLE available, along with the $3.6MM bi-annual exception.

Frazier has bounced around the league since his rookie campaign of 2014/15. Detroit will be his sixth team. He saw action in 47 regular-season games, including 17 starts, with New Orleans last season and 12 more with the Bucks. He also made 11 postseason appearances with Milwaukee. Overall, he’s appeared in 245 NBA games, averaging 5.2 PPG and 4.1 APG in 18.2 MPG.

Bucks Sign Tim Frazier, Waive Christian Wood

MARCH 19, 10:22am: The Bucks have officially signed Frazier to a rest-of-season deal, according to a press release from the team.

MARCH 18, 11:05am: The Bucks have officially waived Wood, the team announced today (via Twitter).

MARCH 18, 9:32am: The Bucks are making a change to their 15-man roster in the wake of Malcolm Brogdon‘s foot injury, according to Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports, who reports (via Twitter) that the team will sign free agent guard Tim Frazier. Milwaukee will waive forward Christian Wood to open up a spot for the new addition.

It’s a logical move for the Bucks, who carried Frazier on their roster during training camp and the preseason last fall before releasing him. The 28-year-old was claimed off waivers by the Pelicans at that point, but once New Orleans fell out of playoff contention in February, the club cut Frazier to take a flier on EuroLeague sharpshooter Dairis Bertans.

In 47 games (17 starts) this season with the Pelicans, Frazier averaged 5.0 PPG, 4.4 APG, and 2.9 RPG with a .451/.351/.780 shooting line.

Signing Frazier will allow the Bucks to address an area of need, with Brogdon expected to miss approximately six to eight weeks due to a minor plantar fascia tear in his right foot. However, the move will cost the team Wood, who was a “valued member” of the organization, as Haynes tweets.

The 23-year-old played sparingly for Milwaukee this season, but has put up massive G League numbers, averaging 29.3 PPG, 14.0 RPG, 2.4 APG, and 2.1 BPG on 55.9% shooting in 28 games (35.3 MPG) for the Wisconsin Herd. He’s expected to draw interest from other NBA clubs, per Haynes, though he wouldn’t be playoff-eligible this spring.

If Wood goes unclaimed on waivers, the Bucks will remain responsible for his $1,512,601 cap hit for 2018/19, but would be off the hook for $1,645,357 salary for 2019/20, since it’s non-guaranteed. Wood might be an appealing target on waivers though, since his two-year, minimum-salary contract allows any club to place a claim using the minimum salary exception. If he’s claimed, his cap charge would be removed from Milwaukee’s books.

Frazier, meanwhile, would have a $205,098 cap hit for the rest of the season if the Bucks officially sign him today.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Pelicans Waive Tim Frazier, Sign Dairis Bertans

MARCH 1: Both Frazier’s release and Bertans’ signing are now official, according to NBA.com’s transactions log.

FEBRUARY 28: The Pelicans are making a change to their roster, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, who reports that the team has waived guard Tim Frazier and is working to sign EuroLeague guard Dairis Bertans.

Although neither move has been officially announced yet, Wojnarowski suggests Frazier was released on Wednesday night, while Shams Charania of The Athletic tweets that Bertans has agreed to a two-year deal with a team option for 2019/20. Will Guillory of The Athletic notes (via Twitter) that Bertans will require FIBA clearance, but the hope is that he can join the Pelicans later this week.

Bertans, 29, is the older brother of Spurs sharpshooter Davis Bertans. Like his brother, Dairis is most dangerous from beyond the arc — while Davis ranks second in the NBA with a .469 3PT%, Dairis leads the EuroLeague with a .536 3PT% in 22 games this season for Italian team Olimpia Milano.

Once the elder Bertans exercises the out clause in his deal with Olimpia Milano and officially joins the Pelicans, he’ll be able to sign for a deal worth up to about $274K in 2018/19, ESPN’s Bobby Marks observes (via Twitter). However, that figure is only possible if New Orleans uses the remainder of its bi-annual exception, having given most of it to Elfrid Payton last summer. The Pelicans used their full mid-level exception on Julius Randle.

If New Orleans opts for a minimum salary contract instead, it’ll be worth approximately $199K for this season. Both that figure and the bi-annual number are based on Bertans signing today, so they’d dip a little each day if the move is delayed. Either contract will include a minimum salary (about $1.42MM) for 2019/20. Even if the Pelicans had wanted to go beyond two years for the Latvian guard, they wouldn’t have been able to due to their limited available exceptions.

Meanwhile, Frazier will retain his playoff eligibility for a new team, since he’s being waived before the end of March 1. It’s not clear whether he’ll catch on somewhere else right away, but he could provide some depth at the point for a contender. In 47 games (19.3 MPG) this season, he has averaged 5.0 PPG and 4.4 APG with a .451/.351/.780 shooting line.

These two moves will represent the first two transactions for new Pelicans interim GM Danny Ferry.

Central Notes: Jackson, Arcidiacono, Frazier, Bucks Arena

Pistons coach Dwane Casey plans to play his point guards Reggie Jackson and Ish Smith together on a regular basis this season, as he told the Free Press and other media outlets. Casey paired them up during stretches of the second and fourth quarters during the team’s 103-100 season-opening win over Brooklyn. “I really liked it,” Casey said. “I think Ish and Reggie together gives us a different pick-and-roll look, an opportunity to have multiple pick-and-rolls and two attackers. … It really gives us some energy, juice, speed, quickness and attackers.”

We have more from the Central Division:

  • Guards Ryan Arcidiacono and Tyler Ulis could receive extensive playing time as the Bulls search for answers behind starting point guard Kris Dunn and at the off-guard position, Mark Strotman of NBC Sports Chicago reports. Arcidiacono, whose $1,349,383 salary doesn’t become fully guaranteed until January 10th, collected eight points and eight assists in 28 minutes during the team’s opener. Ulis, who received a two-way contract this week after being claimed off waivers, could spark the second unit. “He’s ready. He’s done a good job in practice,” coach Fred Hoiberg said of Ulis.
  • The Bucks saved a little money — $18,321 to be exact — when guard Tim Frazier was claimed off waivers by the Pelicans, Bobby Marks of ESPN tweets. New Orleans inherited Frazier’s $1.5MM non-guaranteed contract. He was Milwaukee’s final roster cut prior to opening night.
  • The Bucks franchise would have relocated if the new Fiserv Forum hadn’t been built, Jeff Zillgitt of USA Today writes. Milwaukee played its first regular-season game there on Friday. “We were going to do everything we could to stay in Milwaukee,” Bucks co-owner Mark Lasry said. “That was ultimately something that was outside our control in that the NBA wanted a new arena, and if we couldn’t get one, they would have forced us to move.” When the current ownership group bought the Bucks for $550MM in 2014, the purchase agreement included a clause allowing the league to buy back the team for potential relocation if the new owners didn’t get a formal arena construction plan in place, Zillgitt adds.

Pelicans Claim Tim Frazier, Waive Troy Williams

Point guard Tim Frazier, who was released Monday by the Bucks, has been claimed off waivers by the Pelicans, tweets Shams Charania of The Athletic. New Orleans opened a roster spot by waiving forward Troy Williams (Twitter link).

Frazier was the final roster cut in Milwaukee after signing with the team shortly before training camp opened in September. This will be the second stint with the Pelicans for the 27-year-old, who played a combined 81 games for New Orleans during the 2015/16 and 2016/17 seasons.

Frazier has 186 games of NBA experience, playing for the Sixers, Trail Blazers and Wizards as well. He spent last season in Washington, where he got into 59 games and averaged 3.0 PPG.

The Pelicans were Williams’ fourth team since entering the league in 2016. He signed a two-year deal in July, but only had a small guarantee for this season, while next season was non-guaranteed. Williams will become a free agent again if he clears waivers on Friday.

By claiming Frazier, the Pelicans take on the $1.5MM non-guaranteed contract he had in Milwaukee, notes ESPN’s Bobby Marks (Twitter link). Williams will receive $34,183 for four days of service and will be credited with a year of service time even if he doesn’t play in the league this season, adds salary cap expert Jeff Siegel (Twitter link).

Bucks Waive Tim Frazier

The Bucks have reached the regular season roster limit by waiving point guard Tim Frazier, the team announced today (via Twitter). The move reduces Milwaukee’s roster to 17 players, including 15 on standard contracts.

Frazier, who will turn 28 in November, has appeared in 186 NBA games over the last four seasons, spending time with the Sixers, Trail Blazers, Pelicans, and Wizards. In 2017/18, he was a backup in Washington, posting 3.0 PPG and 3.3 APG in 59 games (14.2 MPG).

After waiving Tyler Zeller and Shabazz Muhammad, the Bucks’ final roster decision appeared to come down to Christian Wood, D.J. Wilson, and Frazier — the team only had room for two of the three, and Frazier’s non-guaranteed contract certainly contributed to the decision. Because Milwaukee waited until Monday to cut him, Frazier won’t clear waivers until Wednesday, and the team will assume a small cap hit for two days’ worth of his minimum salary.

Although the Bucks could enter the season with their current roster after releasing Frazier, it’s possible that another move is coming before opening night. Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports reports (via Twitter) that the Bucks and Wizards are in advanced talks on a trade in which Milwaukee would get a player and a draft pick. The Bucks would also get cash in the deal, tweets Jordan Schultz of ESPN.

Matt Velazquez of The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel (via Twitter) suggests that the Bucks would immediately waive that player acquired from Washington and wouldn’t send a player of their own back, so both transactions would have to be completed very soon to beat the roster cutdown deadline.

Bucks Notes: Wood, Muhammad, Budenholzer, New Arena

Christian Wood appears to have the advantage in the battle for the Bucks’ final roster spot based on his performance in today’s intrasquad scrimmage, according to Matt Velazquez of The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. The team entered training camp with 14 guaranteed contracts and four players competing for one position: Wood, Shabazz Muhammad, Tim Frazier and Tyler Zeller.

Wood, who signed with the Bucks last week, stood out today with several offensive rebounds, a few 3-pointers and a steady performance on defense. He has been trying to earn an NBA job since leaving Nevada-Las Vegas in 2015, but has played in just 30 combined games with the Sixers and Hornets.

Muhammad, who came to Milwaukee in March after being waived by the Timberwolves, was also impressive enough to get noticed by Khris Middleton.

“C-Wood and Bazz, they’re competing for a roster spot and you could tell by the way they played,” Middleton said. “They were everywhere.”

There’s more Bucks news to pass along, all courtesy of Velazquez:

  • New coach Mike Budenholzer’s philosophy was on display in the scrimmage as even the centers were taking a healthy number of 3-pointers. Brook Lopez made three from long distance in a 4 1/2-minute stretch and Wood impressed with his outside marksmanship as well. Even John Henson, who has taken just 13 shots from 3-point range in his career, was experimenting with them. “We’re encouraging a lot of spacing, guys having a lot of confidence,” Budenholzer said. “It felt like we shot a ton of them.”
  • The Bucks are hoping to use their bench more than in past seasons, and today’s action suggests there are a lot of players who can contribute. Ersan Ilyasova and Pat Connaughton, who both signed as free agents over the summer, provide two more outside shooting threats. Rookie Donte DiVincenzo looked promising and holdovers Tony Snell, Matthew Dellavedova and Thon Maker seemed more comfortable in Budenholzer’s new system.
  • The scrimmage was the first event at the Bucks’ new Fiserv Forum, and the noise level was noticeable, even though the building was only partially filled. Players are hoping the new arena will provide a greater homecourt advantage than the old Bradley Center.