Jazz Rumors

NBA G League Assignments/Recalls: 3/22/19

Here are Friday’s assignments and recalls from around the NBA G League:

  • The Sixers assigned big man Jonah Bolden to the Delaware Blue Coats, the team’s PR department tweets. Bolden is averaging 16 PPG and 12 RPG in 33.3 MPG over six appearances with the Blue Coats, who play a back-to-back this weekend.
  • The Spurs recalled rookie guard and first-round pick Lonnie Walker IV from the Austin Spurs, according to a team press release. In 28 games with Austin, Walker IV is averaging 16.7 PPG in 27.5 MPG.
  • The Magic assigned guard Melvin Frazier Jr. to Lakeland ahead of the G League’s team back-to-back games this weekend, the team’s PR department tweets. Frazier is averaging 12.1 PPG in 29.8 MPG over 16 games with Lakeland.
  • The Knicks recalled center Luke Kornet from Westchester, the team’s PR department tweets. Kornet is averaging 18.8 PPG and 8.8 RPG in 32.5 MPG over 11 games with Westchester.
  • The Jazz assigned first-round pick and guard Grayson Allen to the Salt Lake City Stars, the team’s PR department tweets. Allen is averaging 17.5 PPG in 31.8 MPG while starting 11 games for the Stars.
  • The Warriors assigned rookie guard and first-round pick Jacob Evans III to Santa Cruz, according to a team press release. In 20 games with Santa Cruz, he’s averaging 11.5 PPG and 2.5 APG in 26.4 MPG.

Jazz, Grizzlies Could Revisit Conley Trade Talks In Offseason

Prior to this season’s trade deadline, the Jazz and Grizzlies engaged in serious discussions about a deal that would have sent Mike Conley to Utah. While the two sides ultimately didn’t agree to terms on a deadline deal, those talks could pick back up in June, front office executives tell Kevin O’Connor of The Ringer.

The exact details of Utah’s February offer for Conley aren’t known, but the Jazz were believed to be offering at least a first-round pick and a pair of expiring veteran contracts (Ricky Rubio and Derrick Favors). Memphis reportedly sought a second first-round pick or point guard Dante Exum, and the Jazz weren’t willing to go that high.

The Grizzlies moved on from veteran center Marc Gasol at last month’s deadline, signaling that they’re ready to break up their longtime core and retool their roster. In other words, Conley is a good bet to be back on the trade block this summer. However, a report after the deadline suggested that Memphis also doesn’t mind the idea of hanging onto its point guard and building around Conley and Jaren Jackson, so an offseason trade certainly isn’t a foregone conclusion.

Conley remains under contract for $32.5MM in 2019/20, with a $34.5MM early termination option for 2020/21. That’s a steep price to pay for a point guard in his 30s, but the former Ohio State standout has been as good as ever this season, averaging a career-high 20.7 PPG to go along with 6.4 APG, 3.4 RPG, and 1.4 SPG.

The Jazz, meanwhile, could be on the lookout for a point guard this summer with Rubio set to reach unrestricted free agency and Exum once again plagued by health issues.

Northwest Notes: Westbrook, Jokic, Jazz, Exum

Thunder star Russell Westbrook will be suspended one game after picking up his 16th technical foul of the season on Saturday, the league announced today. Westbrook will serve his one-game suspension on Monday night against the Heat.

League rules mandate that any player who receives his 16th technical foul receive a one-game suspension and a $5,000 fine. For Westbrook, every other technical foul between now and the end of the regular season will result in another one-game suspension.

Westbrook, known as a highly expressive player during his 11 NBA seasons, was upset over a questionable no-call in the team’s game against Golden State. Westbrook attacked the basket and drew some contact from Klay Thompson, receiving a technical shortly afterward.

The Thunder are battling for a high playoff seed in the Western Conference, currently leading the No. 6 Spurs by one game and trailing the No. 4 Blazers by a half-game. Westbrook’s poor shooting could’ve played a role in his frustration on Saturday, with the 30-year-old scoring just seven points on 2-for-16 shooting.

In addition to his fine, Westbrook will lose $245,891 in salary by sitting Monday’s game, ESPN’s Royce Young tweets. The Thunder will save $522,518 toward the luxury tax.

There’s more from the Northwest Division today:

  • Nuggets center Nikola Jokic was ejected Saturday after accruing two technical fouls, expressing his frustration to the media after the game. “It’s extremely hard because it’s not equal for everybody,” Jokic said, according to Mike Singer of the Denver Post. Jokic was adamant that he didn’t say anything to referee Tony Brothers, who assessed Jokic his second technical. “I didn’t say nothing, I don’t know what he was talking (about).”
  • Jazz owner Gail Miller sent an important message to Utah fans following the incident with Russell Westbrook and a disruptive fan last week, sharing the importance of keeping a respectful atmosphere while attending home games. “We do not permit hate speech, racism, sexism or homophobia,” Miller said as part of a larger statement. “We also do not allow disruptive behavior, including bullying, foul or abusive language, or obscene gestures. Violators may be subject to ejection and other penalties, including a lifetime ban.”
  • Jazz players have rallied around Dante Exum after the 23-year-old suffered yet another injury last week. Exum, who already missed 25 straight games due to injury this year, suffered a torn patellar tendon in his right knee and will be out indefinitely. “They’ve been very supportive,” Exum said, as relayed by Aaron Falk of Jazz.com. “Just every day they wanted to make sure I was right.” Exum, the No. 5 pick in 2014’s draft, has only appeared in 42 games with the team this season.

Jazz’s Exum Suffers Another Injury Setback

Jazz point guard Dante Exum has a partially torn patellar tendon in his right knee and will be sidelined indefinitely, according to a team press release.

Exum’s latest injury was uncovered during an MRI on Friday. He will continue to seek opinions on how best to treat the injury, according to the release, which suggests that he hopes to avoid surgery.

Exum is averaging 6.9 PPG and 2.6 APG in 15.8 MPG through 42 games this season. Exum just returned to action earlier this week after being sidelined 25 games with a sprained ankle and bone bruise. He suffered his latest injury during Utah’s game against Minnesota on Thursday.

The snakebit point guard missed all of the 2015/16 season with a torn ACL and was limited to 14 regular-season games last season after undergoing shoulder surgery in October 2017.

Raul Neto will see his minutes increase behind starter Ricky Rubio in Exum’s absence.

NBA G League Assignments/Recalls: 3/14/19

Here are Thursday’s assignments and recalls from around the NBA G League:

  • The Raptors assigned forward Malcolm Miller to the Raptors 905, G League affiliate of the team, announcing the news on social media. After playing for the Raptors 905 earlier today, Miller was recalled by Toronto and suited up for the NBA team against the Lakers.
  • The Celtics have recalled Robert Williams from the Maine Red Claws, the team announced on social media. Williams was drafted by Boston with the the No. 27 pick in 2018, spending part of this season with Maine.
  • The Jazz assigned center Tony Bradley to their G League team in Salt Lake City, announcing the move in a press release. Bradley has seen action in 17 games with the team’s G League affiliate, averaging 13.6 points per game on 56% from the field.

NBA G League Assignments/Recalls: 3/12/19

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

  • The Grizzlies recalled Tyler Dorsey from the G League affiliate, the Memphis Hustle, the team announced (Twitter link).
  • The Celtics assigned Robert Williams to their G League affiliate, the Maine Red Claws, the team announced (Twitter link).
  • The Wizards assigned Chasson Randle to their G League affiliate, the Capital City Go-Go, per a press release. Randle has averaged 5.7 PPG and 2.0 APG in 15.2 minutes per game with Washington.
  • The Jazz assigned Grayson Allen to the Salt Lake City Stars, the team announced today in a press release. Allen, on his 11th assignment of the season, will suit up for Utah’s G League affiliate tonight.
  • The Sixers recalled rookie Zhaire Smith, who was available for Philadelphia’s game tonight, according to the team (via Twitter). Smith, who has yet to make his NBA debut, didn’t see any action vs. Cleveland.

Russell Westbrook Fined $25K; Jazz Ban Fan Involved In Heated Exchange

Thunder guard Russell Westbrook has been fined $25,000 for “directing profanity and threatening language to a fan,” the league announced in a statement on Tuesday. The fan, who made derogatory remarks towards Westbrook during the heated exchange has been permanently banned from Vivint Smart Home Arena in Utah, the Jazz announced.

The incident occurred during Oklahoma City’s win over Utah on Monday between Westbrook and the fan, later identified as Shane Keisel. Westbrook said that Kiesel made comments about his family and at one point, told the former MVP to “get down on your knees like you’re used to.”

“For me, I’m just not going to continue to take disrespect for my family,” Westbrook said to reporters, including Maddie Lee of The Oklahoman, after the game. “I just think there’s got to be something done. There’s got to be some consequences for those type of people that come to the game just to say and do whatever they want to say. I don’t think it’s fair to the players — not just to me, but I don’t think it’s fair to the players.

Speaking to KSL 5 TV, Keisel gave a more subdued account of the incident, saying that he believed the exchange to be all in “good fun.”

“It was actually having fun, to be honest,” Keisel said of the encounter. “He was smiling at one point.”

“I told him, ‘Sit down and ice your knees bro!’ And he turned to me and is like, ‘That’s heat, that’s heat!’…I never said a single swear word to him, not one. Initially, I was like, ‘Oh, I’m talking to Westbrook, he’s one of the greats.’ But he’s classless.”

However, in the Jazz noted in their statement that Keisel violated the NBA’s Code of Conduct and that the organization would not tolerate such behavior moving forward.

“The organization conducted an investigation through video review and eyewitness accounts,” the Jazz said in the statement. “The ban is based on excessive and derogatory verbal abuse directed at a placer during the game that violated the NBA Code of Conduct. The Utah Jazz will not tolerate fans who act inappropriately. There s no place in our game for personal attacks or disrespect.”

Exum Returns After 25-Game Absence

  • Jazz backup point guard Dante Exum returned to action on Monday after missing the previous 25 games due to a sprained ankle and bone bruise. Coach Quin Snyder is confident Exum can reestablish himself as a rotation piece, a feeling he relayed to Aaron Falk of the team’s website and other media members. “We realize he hasn’t played in two months, but it will be good to have him back out there and start to work through some of the rust,” Snyder said. “The longer you’re out, the more difficult it is to pick up where you left off. But there’s no reason he won’t get back to that.”

NBA G League Assignments/Recalls: 3/9/19

Here are today’s G League assignments and recalls from around the NBA:

  • The Jazz assigned Dante Exum, who has been sidelined since January 5 with an ankle injury, to their Salt Lake affiliate, along with Grayson Allen and Georges Niang, the team announced on Twitter. All three players were recalled after today’s practice.
  • The Jazz also recalled Tony Bradley, according to a tweet from the team.
  • The Bucks assigned Christian Wood to the Wisconsin Herd for tonight’s game with Canton (Twitter link).
  • The Rockets recalled Isaiah Hartenstein from Rio Grande Valley to add some center depth heading into a back-to-back, tweets Jonathan Feigen of The Houston Chronicle.
  • The Sixers assigned Amir Johnson and Justin Patton to play for Delaware in tonight’s game, according to Keith Pompey of The Philadelphia Inquirer (Twitter link). Both will be recalled after the game.

And-Ones: R. Wallace, Exum, Underclassmen

Four-time NBA All-Star Rasheed Wallace has secured a new job, having been named the boys’ basketball coach at Jordan High School in Durham, North Carolina, according to Jonas Pope IV of The News & Observer. Wallace, who last played in the NBA during the 2012/13 season, says that he considered taking an NBA job before instead opting for a head coaching position at the high school level.

“I did have some offers from a few NBA teams to be on their staff,” Wallace said. “The money was good, but it’s not about the money to me, it’s about that knowledge. Knowledge should be free and it doesn’t cost anything to pass that knowledge to these young men.”

A member of the Pistons’ 2004 championship team, Wallace briefly served as an assistant coach on Detroit’s staff in 2013/14 after he retired as a player.

Here are a few more odds and ends from around the basketball world:

  • The Jazz offered an update on Dante Exum today, announcing that the point guard – who has been on the shelf since January 5 due to an ankle injury – plans to return to practice this week. The news suggests that Utah should expect to get Exum back in its rotation sometime in the not-too-distant future.
  • Evan Daniels of 247Sports.com identifies eight NCAA underclassmen who could face tough decisions on whether or not to forgo their remaining college eligibility and go pro this season. Tyler Herro (Kentucky), Jordan Nwora (Louisville), Tre Jones (Duke), and Coby White (UNC) are among the prospects on Daniels’ list.
  • Brian Windhorst’s latest column at ESPN.com focuses on several subjects of interest, including the challenges facing the Heat as they try to acquire a star, and commissioner Adam Silver‘s recent comments on the state of the NBA.