Vlatko Cancar

Rosters Announced For Olympic Qualifying Tournaments

Four qualifying tournaments to determine the final four teams in the men’s basketball pool at the Tokyo Olympics are set to tip off on Tuesday. In advance of the Olympic qualifiers, the 24 teams involved have officially set their 12-man rosters, according to a press release from FIBA.

More than two dozen current NBA players are participating in the tournament, and 11 of the 24 teams competing for Olympic spots have at least one current NBA players on their respective rosters. Of those clubs, Team Canada has the biggest contingent of NBA players — eight of the 12 players on Nick Nurse‘s squad finished the season on an NBA roster. Turkey is next with four NBA players.

The four qualifying tournaments will take place in Serbia, Lithuania, Croatia, and Canada. Only the winner of each six-team group will advance to Tokyo. Those four winners will join Japan, Nigeria, Argentina, Iran, France, Spain, Australia, and the U.S. in the 12-team Olympic tournament.

The teams that move onto the Olympics may tweak their rosters for Tokyo, depending on the availability of certain players. For instance, if Greece were to win its qualifying tournament, perhaps Bucks star Giannis Antetokounmpo – who remains active in the playoffs for now – would make an effort to join the team in Tokyo next month.

Here are the NBA players on the OQT rosters:

Belgrade, Serbia

Kaunas, Lithuania

Split, Croatia

Victoria, Canada

There are also many former NBA players among the 24 rosters, including Mario Hezonja (Croatia), Milos Teodosic (Serbia), Jan Vesely (Czech Republic), Timofey Mozgov (Russia), and Anthony Bennett (Canada).

To view the full rosters, be sure to visit FIBA’s official site and click through to each team from there.

Northwest Notes: Nuggets, Thunder, Booker, Bazley, Jazz

When the Nuggets rested all five of their starters for the entire fourth quarter in a close loss to the Lakers on Monday night, it was clear that the team was prioritizing health over its playoff seed, writes Mike Singer of The Denver Post. Having been shorthanded throughout the restart, Denver will want to make sure it keeps key players like Nikola Jokic, Jamal Murray, and Paul Millsap off the injured list with the playoffs around the corner.

Fortunately for the Nuggets, two of their missing rotation players may be nearing a return. As Singer relays (via Twitter), TNT’s Jared Greenberg said on Monday night’s broadcast that the club is hoping to have Gary Harris and Will Barton available on Friday for the last of eight seeding games. Neither player has suited up so far this summer.

Meanwhile, rookie Vlatko Cancar, who is recovering from a foot fracture, has arrived at the Walt Disney World campus and is in quarantine, according to Singer (Twitter link). Although Cancar isn’t expected to play, the Nuggets can now say their entire team is in Orlando, Singer notes.

Let’s round up a few more notes from around the Northwest…

  • Former Suns GM Ryan McDonough, who drafted Devin Booker with the No. 13 pick in 2015, tells Chris Mannix of SI.com that the Thunder tried to trade up one spot from No. 14 in what he believes was an effort to nab Booker themselves. “You could kind of hear or sense the air come out of the (OKC) room,” McDonough said of the moment when he told the Thunder he was drafting Booker. “You could tell they wanted him.”
  • Although he has been part of the Thunder‘s rotation for most of his rookie season, Darius Bazley has received a bump in minutes this summer and has responded well, with his first career double-double (22 points, 10 rebounds) on Monday. Nick Gallo of OKCThunder.com notes that Bazley’s play in the restart bodes well for his long-term potential, while Jenni Carlson of The Oklahoman points to the 20-year-old’s shot selection as a key reason for his breakout.
  • Like Denver, the Jazz are prioritizing staying healthy and developing their bench players as the postseason nears, says Sarah Todd of The Deseret News. Miye Oni, Jarrell Brantley, and Rayjon Tucker are among the beneficiaries, playing at least 23 minutes apiece on Monday vs. Dallas.

Injury Notes: Embiid, Robinson, Harris, Barton, Mills

Joel Embiid missed the Sixers’ last two scrimmage games due to right calf tightness. However, he’s expected to play on Saturday in the team’s seeding opener against the Pacers, according to Keith Pompey of the Philadelphia Inquirer.

Embiid suffered the calf injury during a July 24 scrimmage against the Grizzlies and played just 13 minutes. He also battled injuries prior to the stoppage of play in March. He missed nine games with a torn ligament in his right hand, and sat out five others with a left shoulder sprain, Pompey notes.

The Sixers can improve their playoff seeding during the next eight games. They are tied for fifth place in the East with Indiana at 39-26.

We have more injury-related news:

  • Sixers forward Glenn Robinson III is doubtful to play on Saturday, Pompey notes in the same story. He has a left hip pointer, which he suffered during a scrimmage against the Thunder on Sunday.
  • The Nuggets will go without at least two key players in their seeding opener on Saturday, the team’s PR department tweets. Guard Gary Harris has a right hip muscle strain while Will Barton is dealing with right knee soreness. Reserve big man Vlatko Cancar (left foot fracture) will also miss the game. Starting point guard Jamal Murray is questionable duo to left hamstring tightness.
  • Spurs veteran guard Patty Mills didn’t play in the team’s first game in Orlando but it wasn’t injury-related, ESPN’s Ohm Youngmisuk tweets. Coach Gregg Popovich simply wanted to use his younger guards more extensively. Shooting guard Bryn Forbes‘ absence was injury-related — he’s dealing with a sore right quad.

Nuggets Notes: Starting Five, Porter, Barton, Cancar

After a layoff of nearly four-and-a-half months, basketball returned today, and the Nuggets celebrated the occasion by running out the most unusual five-man starting lineup we’ve seen all season in their inter-squad scrimmage vs. Washington.

As Kendra Andrews of The Athletic relays (via Twitter), Denver’s starting five consisted entirely of power forwards and centers, with Nikola Jokic, Jerami Grant, Paul Millsap, and Mason Plumlee joined by rookie Bol Bol, making his Nuggets debut after having been limited to eight G League appearances so far in his first professional season.

The Nuggets rolled with that gigantic lineup in large part because a handful of their players were unavailable on Wednesday. Here are updates on a few of those players:

  • Nuggets forward Michael Porter Jr. is traveling to Orlando today, a source tells Mike Singer of The Denver Post. Porter hadn’t initially traveled with the team two weeks ago and had yet to arrive at the NBA’s campus, but should be able to begin his two-day quarantine period on Wednesday evening.
  • Will Barton was held out of the Nuggets’ first inter-squad scrimmage today due to knee soreness, Singer writes in a separate Denver Post story. According to head coach Michael Malone, Barton could have played today if he were needed, but the team preferred to take a cautious approach (Twitter link via Singer). Jamal Murray was also held out of today’s scrimmage as a precautionary measure.
  • Nuggets forward Vlatko Cancar is dealing with a left foot injury and has yet to arrive in Orlando, per Singer. Cancar was listed on the Nuggets’ official summer roster announced by the NBA on Monday, so presumably the team still believes he has a chance to report to the Disney campus.

NBA G League Assignments/Recalls: 12/8/19

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

NBA G League Assignments/Recalls: 11/7/19

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

  • The Nuggets have assigned rookie forward Vlatko Cancar to the Erie BayHawks, the team’s PR department tweets. The 2017 second-round selection has appeared in one game, a two-minute cameo on Oct. 31. Denver doesn’t have a G League affiliate.
  • The Clippers assigned center Mfiondu Kabengele and guard Derrick Walton Jr. to the Agua Caliente Clippers for a practice and then recalled them, Jovan Buha of The Athletic tweets.
  • The Bulls assigned swingman Denzel Valentine, who missed last season due to an ankle injury, to the Windy City Bulls, the team’s PR department tweets. Valentine practiced with the G League team and is expected to remain with them for their first two games on Friday and Saturday. Rookie power forward Daniel Gafford was also assigned to the Windy City Bulls and will remain for their season opener, according to another team tweet.
  • The Spurs assigned forward Chimezie Metu to their Austin affiliate, then recalled him prior to their game against Oklahoma City, according to a team press release. He’ll be re-assigned to Austin for its season opener on Friday.
  • The Hawks assigned swingman Allen Crabbe to the College Park Skyhawks for a practice and then recalled him, according to Sarah Spencer of the Atlanta Journal Constitution and the team’s PR department (Twitter links). Crabbe is working his way back from knee surgery.
  • The Hornets assigned two rookies, guard Cody Martin and forward Caleb Martin, to the Greensboro Swarm for a practice and then recalled them, according to a team press release. They also recalled rookie forward Jalen McDaniels, according to another team release.

Nuggets Notes: Beasley, Hernangomez, Bol, Cancar

Possible extensions for Malik Beasley and Juancho Hernangomez are the last pieces of business the Nuggets may address before the opening of training camp, writes Mike Singer of The Denver Post. Denver’s front office acted quickly to give Jamal Murray a max extension, but the others aren’t clear-cut decisions, and Singer examines the positives and negatives of reaching deals with both players before the October 21 deadline.

Beasley emerged as a valuable bench player last season after injuries to Gary Harris and Will Barton. He averaged 15.9 PPG and shot 55% from the field as a starter, including 50% on 3-pointers. He enters this season as Harris’ primary backup, but still needs to improve on defense before coach Michael Malone will be comfortable playing him late in games. Singer speculates that based on last year’s performance, Beasley may want to skip an extension and try his luck as a restricted free agent next summer.

Hernangomez is coming off an injury-plagued season that saw him fall out of the rotation by the second half of the season. He had core surgery after the season ended and is coming off a strong performance with Spain’s gold medal-winning World Cup team. Hernangomez doesn’t have an established role and figures to compete for playing time with Barton, Torrey Craig, Michael Porter Jr. and Jerami Grant.

There’s more today from Denver:

  • It may be time for the Nuggets to move some of their depth in exchange for an established star, suggests Nick Kosmider of The Athletic. If the Wizards decide to part with Bradley Beal, for example, Kosmider believes Denver could put together a competitive offer involving Harris, Porter and a future first-rounder or possibly Hernangomez, Monte Morris, Beasley and a future pick. Other possible targets could include Kevin Love, Jeff Teague or one of the Raptors‘ veterans.
  • Bol Bol may spend his entire rookie season in the G League, Kosmider states in a mailbag column. Bol was a highly touted college prospect before injuries cut his season short, and the Nuggets view him as a project that will take time to develop, Kosmider adds, which is why he was signed to a two-way contract. Bol’s progress may be complicated because Denver doesn’t have a direct G League affiliate, which means much of the work will be done by another organization.
  • Vlatko Cancar may be in the same position, but his standard contract gives him a better chance to win a role in training camp, Kosmider notes in the same piece.

Nuggets Notes: Load Management, Duval, Cancar, Backcourt

Paul Millsap, Nikola Jokic and Jamal Murray are all candidates for load management in order to keep them fresh for the playoffs, Nick Kosmider of The Athletic writes. While coach Michael Malone isn’t a fan of the tactic, an occasional night off for the trio could make some sense, Kosmider continues. Age is a factor for Millsap, while there isn’t a lot of depth behind Jokic and Murray at their respective positions.

We have more on the Nuggets:

  • Free agent point guard Trevon Duval worked out for the Nuggets last week, Ben Stinar of Amico Hoops tweets. Duval was a two-way player for the Rockets last season and became a free agent when the team didn’t give him a qualifying offer this summer. He was claimed by Houston in March after the Bucks waived him.
  • Rookie forward Vlatko Cancar isn’t the kind of player that brings people out of their seats, as he told Eric Spyropoulos of the team’s website. Cancar signed with Denver, which drafted him in the second round in 2017, after spending last season in Spain. “I’m not a spectacular, flashy player,” he said. “I’ll be the player that gets the job done and helps the team be in the best position it can be.”
  • The starting backcourt of Murray and Gary Harris is ranked among the top five in the league by Bleacher Report.

Western Notes: Cancar, Guduric, Rubio, Bol Bol

Vlatko Cancar will have plenty of competition at the forward spots but the 22-year-old could help the Nuggets in a variety of ways, as Eric Spyropoulos of the team’s website details. While playing on Denver’s summer league team for two years, Cancar has shown that he can handle the ball, knock down outside shots and battle in the lane. He doesn’t bring elite mobility at the defensive end but he uses his basketball IQ and awareness to position himself well, Spyropoulos adds.

Cancar, a 2017 second-round pick who spent the last two seasons overseas, signed a three-year contract. The first two years are guaranteed and the Nuggets used part of their mid-level exception to secure him, Bobby Marks of ESPN tweets. They are now $979K below the luxury tax line, Marks adds.

We have more from around the Western Conference:

  • The addition of Marko Guduric further muddles the Grizzlies’ wing rotation, David Cobb of the Memphis Commercial Appeal writes. He’ll join a group that includes shooting guards Grayson Allen, Dillon Brooks and Josh Jackson as well as forwards Jae Crowder, Solomon Hill, Kyle Anderson and Bruno Caboclo. Guduric’s two-year, $5.3MM contract put the Grizzlies close to $128MM in salary commitments and gives them a full camp roster, Cobb adds. Guduric, who shot 47.7% from long range in Turkey last season, signed the contract on July 31.
  • New Suns point guard Ricky Rubio believes he can make Devin Booker and Deandre Ayton even more productive, as he told Cody Cunningham of the team’s website“I can help them reach the level they deserve,” Rubio said. “Deandre, Devin Booker, I’ve been talking to them the last couple days and they’re really excited. Can’t wait to jump on the court and start working with them.” Rubio was signed to a three-year, $51MM contract to fix Phoenix’s issues at the point guard position.
  • Nuggets rookie big man Bol Bol has moved around quite a bit for a 19-year-old but he feels at home in Denver, as he told Kendra Andrews of The Athletic“I’m happy to be here,” Bol said. “I really like the city. I’m happy to be in a bigger city again.”

Nuggets Sign 2017 Second-Rounder Vlatko Cancar

AUGUST 1: The Nuggets have officially signed Cancar to a contract, per NBA.com’s transactions log. Terms of the deal aren’t yet known, but Denver has its mid-level exception available, so it could exceed two years.

JULY 13: The Nuggets are expected to sign Slovenian prospect Vlatko Cancar, a source tells Emiliano Carchia of Sportando (Twitter link). Cancar was Denver’s second-round pick (49th overall) in the 2017 draft.

Cancar, 22, was selected as a draft-and-stash player and expected to remain in Europe for a couple of seasons before joining the Nuggets. The 6-foot-8 forward has appeared in three Summer League games for Denver, averaging 9.7 PPG and 4.0 RPG.

The forward suited up for San Pablo Burgos in Spain last season.