Lakers Sign Markieff Morris

FEBRUARY 23, 6:45pm: The Lakers have officially signed Morris, the team announced in a press release. As expected, Cousins has been waived to open up a roster spot.

FEBRUARY 23, 3:55pm: The Lakers will sign Morris using their $1.75MM disabled player exception once he clears waivers at 4 p.m. CST this afternoon, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski tweets.

FEBRUARY 21, 5:04pm: Power forward Markieff Morris plans to sign with the Lakers once he clears waivers, Shams Charania of The Athletic tweets.

Morris reached a buyout agreement with the Pistons on Friday afternoon and was placed on waivers. It’s possible another team could swoop in and claim Morris, who was making $3.2MM this season. However, Morris had a $3.36MM player option on the second year of his contract with Detroit. He let the Pistons off the hook with the buyout but that option would be restored if he were claimed.

A team would have to have a traded player exception big enough to accommodate Morris’ $3.2MM cap hit in order to claim him. Most contenders that fit the bill have tax or hard-cap concerns, making a claim unlikely.

The Lakers will have to make a roster move to add Morris. They’ll reportedly release injured center DeMarcus Cousins rather than a little-used rotation player like Troy Daniels, Quinn Cook, or Jared Dudley, despite head coach Frank Vogel recently suggesting that Cousins could get healthy for the playoffs.

Morris’ addition to the Lakers provides even more intrigue between the Los Angeles teams. He could wind up guarding his brother, Marcus Morris, if the Lakers and Clippers meet in the playoffs. Marcus Morris was traded to the Clippers in a deadline deal.

Markieff Morris, 30, has appeared in 44 games for the Pistons this season, averaging 11.0 PPG and 3.9 RPG with a .450/.397/.772 shooting line in 22.5 minutes per contest.

Warriors Sign Dragan Bender To 10-Day Contract

FEBRUARY 23: The signing is official, the Warriors announced on Twitter.

FEBRUARY 20: The Warriors intend to sign free agent big man Dragan Bender to a 10-day contract, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, who adds (via Twitter) that the deal is expected to be completed on Sunday. Emiliano Carchia of Sportando first reported that Golden State was considering bringing in Bender on a 10-day pact.

Bender, the fourth overall pick in the 2016 draft, spent three seasons in Phoenix before joining the Bucks for the 2019/20 season. The 22-year-old was on Milwaukee’s roster until earlier this month despite appearing in just seven NBA games, but was waived when the team needed to make room for Marvin Williams.

With career averages of 5.2 PPG and 3.7 RPG in 178 NBA contests (20.0 MPG), Bender hasn’t delivered on the potential that made him a top-five pick in 2016. However, the Warriors had some success developing the Suns’ other ’16 lottery pick – Marquese Chriss – this season, so perhaps the team can also make positive strides with Bender.

The Warriors currently have three open roster spots after Jeremy Pargo‘s and Zach Norvell‘s 10-day contracts expired earlier this week. Anthony Slater of The Athletic (Twitter link) suggested the team plans to roll with 12 players for tonight’s game, at least, since not immediately filling those open roster spots will help the club remain comfortably below the tax.

Bender will make $94,851 on his 10-day contract, with Golden State taking on a $91,557 cap hit.

Donta Hall Signs 10-Day Deal With Pistons

3:59pm: The Pistons have officially announced their new 10-day deal with Hall, issuing a press release to confirm the signing. The contract will run through March 2.

2:00pm: Grand Rapids Drive forward Donta Hall has inked a 10-day contract with that G League club’s NBA affiliate, the Pistons, according to Hoops Rumors reporter JD Shaw (Twitter link).

The Pistons recently freed up roster space when they bought out forward Markieff Morris, who reportedly plans to join the Lakers, and point guard Reggie Jackson, who signed on with the Clippers for the rest of the 2019/20 season.

Hall, a 6’9″, 230-pound 22-year-old undrafted rookie out of Alabama, has averaged 16.4 points per game and 10.5 boards across 36 games for the Drive, according to Austin Kent of SLAM. Hall is connecting on 66.2% of his looks from the floor.

Detroit now has a full roster — 13 players on standard contracts, two on 10-day deals (Hall and Derrick Walton), and two on two-way pacts.

Grizzlies Sign Dusty Hannahs To 10-Day Deal

FEBRUARY 21: The Grizzlies have officially signed Hannahs to a 10-day contract, the team announced today in a press release. The deal will run through March 1.

FEBRUARY 20: The Grizzlies are bringing back Dusty Hannahs. The guard will ink a 10-day deal with the club, Evan Barnes of The Memphis Commercial Appeal reports.

Hannahs has played for the Memphis Hustle of the G League in each of the past three seasons. He was called up on a 10-day deal with the Grizzlies late last season.

The Arkansas native was averaging 21.2 points per game in his 33 G League contests this season. Hannahs is expected to join the Grizzlies during the team’s current four-game road trip.

No corresponding roster move will be necessary, since Memphis has had an opening on its 15-man squad since releasing Dion Waiters earlier this month.

Pistons Buy Out Markieff Morris

2:49pm: The Pistons have made it official, announcing in a press release that they’ve bought out Morris. He’s on track to clear waivers on Sunday.

2:32pm: Just three days after buying out point guard Reggie Jackson, the Pistons have reached a buyout agreement with another veteran contributor, according to Shams Charania of The Athletic, who reports (via Twitter) that the club is buying out forward Markieff Morris.

Morris, 30, has appeared in 44 games for the Pistons this season, averaging 11.0 PPG and 3.9 RPG with a .450/.397/.772 shooting line in 22.5 minutes per contest.

Morris’ two-year contract with Detroit paid him $3.2MM this season and included a $3.36MM player option for next season. Presumably, if he had finished the season with the Pistons, he would have opted out and tested the free agent market, so it’ll be interesting to see how much money he gives up as part of the buyout agreement.

According to Charania (via Twitter), the Lakers have emerged as a frontrunner for Morris. That would add a new layer of intrigue to a potential Los Angeles showdown in the Western Conference playoffs, since the Clippers added Morris’ twin Marcus Morris in a deadline deal earlier this month.

The Raptors have also expressed interest in Markieff, Charania adds.

Hornets Ink Joe Chealey To 10-Day Deal

The Hornets have signed Joe Chealey to a 10-day contract, according to the team’s website.

The guard was previously with the Hornets on a two-way contract back in 2018. He played out the 2018/19 campaign with Charlotte before re-signing with the club during the 2019 offseason.

He was waived prior to the 2019/20 season and has spent the year with the Greensboro Swarm, which is the Hornets’ G League affiliate.

Chealey played his collegiate ball at the College of Charleston in South Carolina. He was not selected in the 2018 draft.

The Hornets were required to add a player to their roster before Saturday, since they’ve been carrying just 13 players on standard contracts since buying out Michael Kidd-Gilchrist and Marvin Williams earlier in the month. Teams are only permitted to carry fewer than 14 players for up to two weeks at a time.

Clippers Sign Reggie Jackson

The Clippers have officially signed Reggie Jackson, as the team relays on its website. The point guard agreed to a buyout with the Pistons earlier this week.

“Reggie is a proven playmaker and scorer, and we are looking forward to adding his experience and creativity to our team,” said president of basketball operations Lawrence Frank.

Jackson will make $734,025 for the remainder of the season, Bobby Marks of tweets. Los Angeles will carry a $512,721 cap hit as a result of the signing.

Jackson, 29, spent the last five years in Detroit, having been acquired from the Thunder in a three-team trade in February 2015. He signed a five-year, $80MM deal with the Pistons a few months later and had been in the final season of that contract before he was released. Jackson gave back a flat $800K in his buyout agreement with the Pistons, reducing Detroit’s dead-money charge for 2019/20 to $17,286,956.

Jackson’s name was among those rumored to be available via trade prior to the deadline, though no deal materialized. The Lakers had interested in inking Jackson earlier this week before the Clippers swooped in.

Rockets Sign DeMarre Carroll

The Rockets have officially signed DeMarre Carroll, according to a team press release. It was reported earlier in the week that he would join Houston.

The Spurs agreed to a buyout with Carroll after not moving him at the trade deadline, waving the white flag on one of the worst offseason acquisitions in the league. It wasn’t necessarily Carroll’s play that was the issue; it was what the Spurs were forced to give up for the wing.

San Antonio had initially agreed to sign Carroll and planned to use their mid-level exception, but when Marcus Morris agreed to a deal with the team, the Spurs pivoted to acquiring Carroll via trade instead (and giving up Davis Bertans to the Wizards). Morris backed out of the agreement, which made giving up Bertans for Carroll an unnecessary move.

Carroll will join the Rockets as they embark on a unique, strange journey of playing no traditional big men most of the time. The 33-year-old will likely spend time at both forward spots with the club, though it wouldn’t be all that surprising if he sees minutes at the five in some funky lineups.

Carroll’s rest-of-season contract with Houston will pay him $811,447, which is the exact amount he gave up in his buyout agreement with the Spurs, per ESPN’s Bobby Marks (via Twitter). The Rockets, who now have a full 15-man roster, will carry a cap hit of $512,721.

Pistons Sign Derrick Walton To 10-Day Deal

FEBRUARY 21: The Pistons have officially signed Walton to his 10-day contract, the team announced in a press release. Detroit will open up another roster spot once Markieff Morrisreported buyout is complete.

FEBRUARY 20: After buying out Reggie Jackson earlier this week, the Pistons will fill the open spot on their roster by signing another point guard, Derrick Walton, reports Shams Charania of The Athletic (via Twitter).

Walton, 24, spent most of the 2019/20 season with the Clippers, averaging 2.2 PPG and 1.0 APG in limited minutes (9.7 MPG) over 23 games for the club. However, L.A. sent him to Atlanta at the deadline in a salary-dump deal and the Hawks subsequently released him, making him a free agent.

In Detroit, Walton will have an opportunity to compete for some of the point guard minutes vacated by Jackson. It’ll also represent a homecoming for the Detroit native, who played his college ball at the University of Michigan.

If Detroit finalizes the signing of Walton today, he could be activated for tonight’s game vs. Milwaukee and the deal would run through next Saturday. He’ll earn $81,678 on the 10-day contract.

Jeff Green Signs 10-Day Deal With Rockets

FEBRUARY 18, 7:19pm: The Rockets have signed Green to a 10-day contract, the team announced in a press release.

FEBRUARY 17, 6:31pm: Green will initially sign a 10-day contract, Jonathan Feigen of the Houston Chronicle tweets. That will give him a chance to see how he fits in before making a rest-of-the-season commitment, Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN tweets.

FEBRUARY 17, 5:56pm: Free agent forward Jeff Green has agreed to sign with the Rockets, Tim MacMahon of ESPN tweets. Green was waived by the Jazz earlier this season.

Green, 33, has bounced around the NBA in recent years, spending time with seven franchises in the past six seasons. While he has been a regular rotation player and occasional starter for every team he has played for, he was off to a slow start in Utah, averaging career lows in PPG (7.8), RPG (2.7), MPG (18.4), FG% (.385), and a handful of other categories. The Jazz let him go in order to sign a younger player, Rayjon Tucker.

With Green joining the fold and DeMarre Carroll expected to sign with the club once he clears waivers, the Rockets will have a full roster as well as fortifying their frontcourt. By adding two forwards rather than a center, Houston is clearly embracing small ball. The club has utilized P.J. Tucker in the middle in recent games since trading traditional center Clint Capela.

Green signed a one year, $2.56MM contract with Jazz last summer. If he signs a minimum-salary, rest-of-season deal with the Rockets, it would fall below $1.4MM, eliminating set-off and allowing Green to double-dip from Utah and Houston, according to ESPN’s Bobby Marks (Twitter link). That would push his total salary for the season to $3.1MM, Marks adds.