Rookie forward Sekou Doumbouya is buried in a shooting slump, but that’s not why the Pistons are concerned about him, Vince Ellis of the Detroit Free Press relays. The first-round pick, who grew up in France, is struggling to adjust off the court and seems unhappy on it. He’s shooting 28.1% from the field over his last 13 appearances following a 24-point outing against Boston.
“I’ve got to be the papa bear and stay on him and make sure he’s doing the right things, but nothing takes the place of having fun and the joy of playing basketball,” coach Dwane Casey said, “I know there is a culture barrier, but he’s got to continue to play hard, play with passion.”
We have more on the Pistons:
- Second-year guard Khyri Thomas, who has been sidelined since late October after undergoing right foot surgery, has returned to practice, Keith Langlois of Pistons.com tweets. Thomas, a second-round pick, appeared in 26 games during his rookie campaign but only played in two games this season before the foot issue cropped up. He has a partially guaranteed $1.66MM salary for next season.
- Point guard Brandon Knight said he’s “excited” to re-join the team that drafted him, Langlois writes. Knight was one of the players acquired in the Andre Drummond deal with Cleveland on Thursday. His second stint may only last a couple of months, as Knight has an expiring contract. But Casey said the veteran guard will get some playing time to show what he can add to the team. “It’s a great opportunity for us to get a look at him and him to look at us at the same time,” Casey said.
- Point guard Derrick Rose and shooting guard Svi Mykhailiuk could return against Orlando on Wednesday, according to Ellis. Neither has played since February 2 due to an adductor strain and a hip injury, respectively.
- The Hawks, Knicks, and Pistons project to have more than enough cap room for a maximum-salary player this summer, with the Heat and Hornets potentially joining them, says John Hollinger of The Athletic. As Hollinger observes in his preview of the NBA’s 2020 cap outlook, there are several other teams that could create some cap room if free agents walk or players turn down options, but there won’t be much league-wide space this offseason.
- After several years spent in the middle of the NBA pack, the Pistons‘ rebuild was a long time coming, writes Rod Beard of The Detroit News.
Heading into the trade deadline, no Pistons player had been with the team longer than Reggie Jackson — except for Andre Drummond. So when Detroit swung a deal that sent Drummond to the Cavaliers, it made sense that Jackson would be among those most affected by the move.
“He was my best friend on the team and it’s been like that for five-and-a-half years. He acclimated me when I first got to Detroit and we built a great friendship and brotherhood,” Jackson said of Drummond, per Rod Beard of The Detroit News. “That’s my guy forever, so it was a tough day seeing he got traded to the Cavs but wishing him nothing but the best for him and his family.”
As Drummond gets acclimated to his new home in Cleveland, here are a few more Cavaliers-related notes:
- Second-year Cavs guard Collin Sexton has been added to the U.S. roster for the Rising Stars game in Chicago this weekend, the league announced today. Sexton will replace Heat guard Tyler Herro, who is nursing a right foot injury.
- Alfonzo McKinnie‘s new four-year contract with the Cavaliers includes a $1.5MM guaranteed salary for the 2019/20 season, according to Jeff Siegel of Early Bird Rights (Twitter link). That’s significantly more than the $623K McKinnie would have received had he signed a prorated minimum deal. And that’s likely a big reason why he was willing to tack on three team-friendly, non-guaranteed years at the minimum. Cleveland was able to exceed the minimum and go up to four years using the mid-level exception.
- Following the expiration of his 10-day contract with the Cavaliers, Marques Bolden rejoined the team’s G League affiliate, the Canton Charge, per JD Shaw of Hoops Rumors (Twitter link). Since Bolden just signed a single 10-day deal with Cleveland, he’d be eligible to sign a second one between now and the end of the regular season.
The Knicks have had a miserable 12 months, finishing the 2018/19 season with a league-worst 17 wins, missing out on their top free agent targets, and then firing head coach David Fizdale and president of basketball operations Steve Mills during the 2019/20 season.
None of that seems to have had a noticeable impact on the team’s market value though. Once again, the franchise is considered the most valuable of any of the NBA’s 30 clubs, according to a report from Kurt Badenhausen of Forbes. The Lakers and Warriors aren’t far behind, having both surpassed the $4 billion mark for the first time this year.
For the first time, all 30 NBA teams have a perceived worth of $1.3 billion or more, per Forbes’ annual report. Every team’s value increased by at least 6% since Forbes put out their 2019 valuations last February, with a handful of franchises jumping by 20% or more.
The NBA-wide average of $2.12 billion per team in 2020 is also a new record — that league-wide average surpassed the $2 billion mark for the first time. NBA franchise values are up almost sixfold over the last decade, according to Badenhausen.
Here’s the full list of NBA franchise valuations, per Forbes:
- New York Knicks: $4.6 billion
- Los Angeles Lakers: $4.4 billion
- Golden State Warriors: $4.3 billion
- Chicago Bulls: $3.2 billion
- Boston Celtics: $3.1 billion
- Los Angeles Clippers: $2.6 billion
- Brooklyn Nets: $2.5 billion
- Houston Rockets: $2.475 billion
- Dallas Mavericks: $2.4 billion
- Toronto Raptors: $2.1 billion
- Philadelphia 76ers: $2 billion
- Miami Heat: $1.95 billion
- Portland Trail Blazers: $1.85 billion
- San Antonio Spurs: $1.8 billion
- Sacramento Kings: $1.775 billion
- Washington Wizards: $1.75 billion
- Phoenix Suns: $1.625 billion
- Denver Nuggets: $1.6 billion
- Milwaukee Bucks: $1.58 billion
- Oklahoma City Thunder: $1.575 billion
- Utah Jazz: $1.55 billion
- Indiana Pacers: $1.525 billion
- Atlanta Hawks: $1.52 billion
- Cleveland Cavaliers: $1.51 billion
- Charlotte Hornets: $1.5 billion
- Detroit Pistons: $1.45 billion
- Orlando Magic: $1.43 billion
- Minnesota Timberwolves: $1.375 billion
- New Orleans Pelicans: $1.35 billion
- Memphis Grizzlies: $1.3 billion
The Raptors are among this year’s big “winners,” with their value rising 25%, from $1.675 billion a year ago to $2.1 billion this year following their first NBA championship. The Clippers also had a noteworthy bump, moving from ninth place on Forbes’ list to sixth after landing Kawhi Leonard and Paul George last summer.
Although every franchise’s value increased, the Nets had the smallest jump, just 6%. The Magic‘s modest 8% increase resulted in the team slipping from 23rd on last year’s list to 27th this year.
It’s worth noting that when a franchise has been sold in recent years, the price often exceeds Forbes’ valuation, so these figures are just estimates.
An active 2020 trade deadline has likely watered down the free-agent market this summer, a pattern far from the norm after a combined $4 billion was spent on more than 150 players last July, Bobby Marks of ESPN.com explores.
There were a total of 12 trades within the 48-hour window of the trade deadline this year, with high-profile players such as D’Angelo Russell, Andre Drummond, Andrew Wiggins and Clint Capela switching teams.
As Marks notes, the 2020 free agency class is projected to be mediocre for the most part. The Knicks could have upwards of $50MM to spend (though they’ll likely wait until the following summer for stronger talent), with the Hawks, Pistons, Hornets, Suns, and Heat also set to have north of $20MM.
Beyond Anthony Davis, some of the top unrestricted free agents this summer include Fred VanVleet, Montrezl Harrell, Danilo Gallinari and Serge Ibaka. Drummond ($28.7MM), DeMar DeRozan ($27.7MM) and Evan Fournier ($17MM) all have player options in their contracts, while Brandon Ingram and Bogdan Bogdanovic are set to enter restricted free agency.
Here are some other odds and ends from around the basketball world:
- Free agent guard Archie Goodwin has signed in Germany with Ratiopharm Ulm, the team announced, as relayed by Sportando. Goodwin, 25, holds NBA experience with the Suns, Pelicans and Nets, most recently playing in Turkey. Goodwin was drafted with the No. 29 overall pick by Oklahoma City back in 2013.
- Former NBA forward Thomas Robinson has signed in Russia with BC Khimki, the team announced on social media. Robinson signed a one-month deal with an extension until the end of the season. The 28-year-old has played for Sacramento, Houston, Portland, Philadelphia, Brooklyn and Los Angeles across his professional career, spending time with the Spurs during summer league in 2019.
- Warriors associate head coach Mike Brown has agreed to be the head coach of the Nigerian men’s basketball team, according to Marc J. Spears of ESPN’s The Undefeated (Twitter link). Brown will coach Nigeria during the 2020 Tokyo Olympics this summer, with Nigeria BB president Musa Kida reportedly looking for a high-profile coach that holds NBA experience.
Andre Drummond thought he was being pranked when he heard about the trade to the Cavaliers, but now he’s excited for the opportunity, writes Chris Fedor of Cleveland.com. Drummond went through his first practice with the team yesterday and is expected to make his debut tonight.
“I was truly excited to be somewhere I’m wanted, really happy to start a new chapter here,” he said. “I’m just looking forward to being with the guys. I’m just looking forward to playing in a Cleveland Cavalier jersey. Everything happens for a reason. I look at it as a bright note for me, for my family to start somewhere new and be with a great group of guys.”
Drummond quickly acclimated himself to his new surroundings, Fedor states. His new teammates were welcoming, including Tristan Thompson, who will move to the bench as Drummond becomes the starting center.
“I’m not taking anybody’s job, I’m just here to play,” Drummond said. “I didn’t come here expecting anything. I’m just here to do my job, whatever they need me to do, I’ll get it done.”
There’s more from Cleveland:
- The chance to add Drummond didn’t arise until Wednesday night, Fedor relays in a separate story. Cavs general manager Koby Altman told his staff to think about it overnight, and the consensus was that the price — the expiring contracts of John Henson and Brandon Knight plus a future second-round pick — was too good to refuse. “I’m sure Detroit has a plan in place in terms of what they want to do either with their cap space or with their future trajectory as a franchise, but our job is to make sure we’re exploring every opportunity out there and making sure we’re doing what’s best for our franchise,” Altman said. “Adding a talent of this magnitude is something that we couldn’t pass up and he also fits our timeline in terms of his age — he’s 26 years old — so he fits with some of our younger guys.”
- As Clippers assistant Tyronn Lue prepares to return to Cleveland tonight, he tells Joe Vardon of The Athletic that he wishes he could still be coaching the Cavaliers. “What I tried to build there, I think the culture I tried to set … I thought we could do it together,” Lue said. “Koby being a young GM, me being a young coach, having young players. I won a championship there, so you have a chance and an opportunity to do something different, and you should have that leeway to be able to go through a couple challenging years. To win a championship and go to the (NBA) Finals should buy you a little time, you would think.”
- Jason Lloyd of The Athletic examines why the Cavs have struggled so much after losing LeBron James for a second time, when they were believed to be in a better position than in 2010.
As we explain in our glossary entry on the NBA’s trade rules, teams that complete a “non-simultaneous” deal can create what’s called a traded player exception. These are salary cap exceptions a team can use anytime during the following calendar year to acquire one or more players whose salaries are no greater than the amount of that exception (plus $100K).
A number of the traded player exceptions created at the 2019 trade deadline expired this week without being used, but nearly two dozen new TPEs were generated as a result of the trades completed at this year’s deadline. They’ll expire next February, so they could be used during the offseason or sometime next season.
The full list of traded player exceptions created this week is below, sorted by amount. The player whose departure helped generate the TPE is noted in parentheses. The full list of available trade exceptions can be found right here.
- Miami Heat: $7,533,867 (James Johnson)
- Memphis Grizzlies: $4,185,185 (Andre Iguodala)
- New York Knicks: $3,988,766 (Marcus Morris)
- Houston Rockets: $3,595,333 (Clint Capela)
- Los Angeles Clippers: $3,567,720 (Jerome Robinson)
- Denver Nuggets: $3,321,030 (Juan Hernangomez)
- Sacramento Kings: $2,673,334 (Dewayne Dedmon)
- Houston Rockets: $2,564,753 (Nene)
- Portland Trail Blazers: $2,338,847 (Skal Labissiere)
- Golden State Warriors: $1,925,880 (Jacob Evans)
- Golden State Warriors: $1,897,800 (Omari Spellman)
- Philadelphia 76ers: $1,882,867 (James Ennis)
- Denver Nuggets: $1,845,301 (Shabazz Napier)
- Memphis Grizzlies: $1,845,301 (Bruno Caboclo)
- Detroit Pistons: $1,716,873 (Andre Drummond)
- Washington Wizards: $1,645,357 (Jordan McRae)
- Golden State Warriors: $1,620,564 (Alec Burks)
- Golden State Warriors: $1,620,564 (Glenn Robinson III)
- Houston Rockets: $1,620,564 (Jordan Bell)
- Houston Rockets: $1,620,564 (Gerald Green)
- Los Angeles Clippers: $1,445,697 (Derrick Walton Jr.)
- Minnesota Timberwolves: $879,813 (Gorgui Dieng)
- Washington Wizards: $1,620,564 (Isaiah Thomas)
In addition to the traded player exceptions from the deals completed on February 6, this list includes the exceptions created on February 5 in the four-team trade involving the Hawks, Timberwolves, Rockets, and Nuggets.
It doesn’t include trade exceptions generated in deals earlier this season, such as the $7,069,662 TPE the Trail Blazers got when they sent Kent Bazemore to Sacramento in a five-player trade. Again, the full list of current TPEs can be found here.
If you have any questions or corrections, please let me know in the comment section below.
Jackson hasn’t decided whether to go the buyout route, Stein adds. Jackson is making approximately $18.1MM in the final year of his five-year, $80MM contract that he signed in 2015.
Detroit has gone into full rebuild mode and traded Jackson’s longtime pick-and-roll partner, Andre Drummond, to Cleveland on Thursday.
Jackson has missed most of this season with a back injury. He’s been productive since returning last month, scoring 20 or more points in four of the last eight games prior to the team’s road tilt in Oklahoma City on Friday.