2010 Summer League Rosters: Denver Nuggets
July 13th, 2010

Antonio Anderson Anderson was previously covered in the Bobcats summer league roster round-up of last week. As it happens, however, Anderson played only 89 seconds for the Lolcats, recording nothing but a trillion. Per 48 minutes, that’s still a trillion. Romel Beck Beck is a 6’8 Mexican shooting guard out of UNLV with a whole load of scoring talent. However, in his life he has only ever had one NBA contract; a training camp contract with the Rockets last year that ultimatey amounted to nothing. And the reason for that lack of NBA airtime is how ridiculously selfish of a player he has been throughout his career. Beck’s scoring talents are legitimate; for example, last year in the D-League, Beck averaged 17.9 points per game for the Dakota Wizards, shooting .543% from the field and .445% from three point range. He’s improving his decision making, and can still create his own shot with relative ease. But his reputation still precedes him, and it might be too late. Brian Butch Butch, a jump shooting big man, is signed for this season to an unguaranteed minimum salary contract. Because these posts are not quite the previews that they were designed to be – sorry – Butch has already gotten hurt in this summer league tournament, dislocating his kneecap. The rule with unguaranteed contracts is that, if a player is injured while playing under contract, the contract is guaranteed until they are able to play again. (This is why Mike Wilks spent the 2008/09 season on the Magic roster, despite being unable to play.) So even though Butch is no doubt in a lot of pain, and suffering a serious career setback, it could well be a bit of a financial windfall for him, unless some hitherto unknown technicality is in place that […]

Posted by at 12:17 AM

As you all know, first prize is a Cadillac El Dorado
October 4th, 2009

Training camp. Love it. Ever since I grew up with a mild addiction to the Championship Manager series of computer games, I have nurtured a mild fascination for transactions in sports. I know it’s not healthy, but I also know I’m not alone. It might be harsh on the players involved, but it’s always fun to us hardened losers when players change teams. It gives us something to think about, something to analyse, and something to find important. Judging the people that are competing at the highest standard in a profession we could only dream of competing in is strangely fun, hence the existence of this website and the presence of your eyes on these words. We love it. Maybe we’re crazy. Oh well.   – Atlanta have well and truly played the training camp game. Teams are allowed a maximum of 20 players under contract in the offseason, and as of last week, Atlanta had only 12. Yet now they have the full compliment of 20, re-signing two of their own free agents (Mario West and Othello Hunter) and bringing in six more (Aaron Miles, Mike Wilks, Juan Dixon, Frank Robinson, Garrett Siler and Courtney Sims), playing the game in the spirit it deserves. The first four of those latter six are guards, which isn’t a coincidence given the Hawks’ lack of depth there. Miles and Wilks are journeyman point guards with NBA experience, and Dixon can pretend to be one on occasion; in case you missed it, the Hawks are openly in the market for a third point guard. Robinson is an undersized shooting guard who was also with the Hawks in training camp last year, and Siler and Sims represent two decent offensive centre prospects. The eight are fighting for a maximum of three spots, but with […]

Posted by at 8:09 PM

Where Are They Now: 2009 NBA Summer League Teams Part 1
September 2nd, 2009

It’s been roughly two months since summer league started, and most of the players involved have been rehomed now. The following is a list of where everybody currently is, or where they might be going. This list gets a bit long, so if you want to just skip to your favoured team, you can do so. I’ll allow that.   Boston Celtics – Nick Fazekas: Fazekas has signed in Europe for next year, with Dijon of France. The longer this goes on, the more it looks like Fazekas is never going to get back into the NBA. Even though he led this Celtics summer league team in points and rebounds, the NBA doesn’t seem to want to know. If that continues to happen, it’ll be…..well, it’ll be strange. – J.R. Giddens: Giddens is still with the Celtics, as Boston tried valiantly to convince Indiana that they wanted him as a part of a Marquis Daniels sign and trade. The Pacers refused. – Lester Hudson: Hudson hasn’t signed with the Celtics yet, but it’s likely that he will do. The Celtics really should try and find a veteran backup option first, even if the pickings are pretty slim now. But if they were going to do that, they probably would have done it already. – Coby Karl: Karl remains unsigned. He also played on the Nuggets’ summer league team. The Nuggets are publicly in the market for a good-shooting two guard. Coby Karl is a good-shooting two guard. The Nuggets’ head coach is George Karl. George Karl is Coby Karl’s dad. It’s going to write itself. You can just feel it. – Chris Lofton: Lofton is unsigned, but won’t be returning to Mersin, who have already replaced him with Richie Frahm and Jimmy Baron. – Bryan Mullins: Southern Illinois’s very own […]

Posted by at 3:50 AM

2009 NBA Summer League round-up: Denver Nuggets
July 6th, 2009

Since Cleveland and Dallas haven’t announced their rosters yet, and Charlotte aren’t having one, we’ll advance list this along to Denver, whose summer league effort this year is a strange one. Their roster is only small, but they’ve made a decent effort nonetheless..   – Derrick Byars: Byars survives as a testament to the reign of Billy King as Sixers general manager. The Sixers acquired the 30th pick in the 2007 draft as a part of the Allen Iverson to Denver trade, but they decided that they didn’t want the guaranteed contract that it necessitated. Therefore, on draft night, the Sixers traded the pick to the Blazers for the #41 pick and cash, using the 41st pick on Byars. They then waived Byars in training camp, and wound up with just the cash. Nice return on a first-round draft pick, that, particularly one which featured a second-round with Marc Gasol, Ramon Sessions, Glen Davis and Carl Landry in it. Byars’ only other NBA flirtation came when he signed with the Thunder in training camp last year, but he didn’t make the team. He then went to the D-League, and averaged 17.7ppg and 4.9rpg for the Bakersfield Jam, but there’s a guy elsewhere on his list who has taken any potential roster spot that Byars may have had. (Clue: it rhymes with “creams”.)   – Dontaye Draper: Draper is a 5’11 guard out of the College of Charleston, who was also on the Nuggets 2007 summer league roster. He split last season between France and Belgium, averaging 20.7 points, 4.2 rebounds and 6.5 assists in the EuroChallenge for Hyeres-Toulon Var Basket (the French half of that split). Draper has been trying to establish himself as more of a pass-first guard over the years, which is kind of necessary when you’re 5’11, […]

Posted by at 9:15 PM

Apologies To The Denver Nuggets
January 28th, 2009

I hated the Marcus Camby trade. I hated it. I think everyone did, even Clippers fans. But I really hated it. I think about trades a lot. I should really have better things to do, but I don’t. So I spend a lot of time thinking about trades that have happened, moves that have been made, who would fit on which team, players that certain teams needed, who’ll sign where and for what, etc. But at not point did I think, “a current DPOY candidate and former winner, on an extremely fair value contract, is going to be moved for nothing more than a trade exception.” You just don’t consider these as possibilities, do you? But it happened. And it annoyed me. It annoyed me for one simple reason – the move was financially motivated, and I hate all purely financially-motivated moves. I wrote about as much here, and, in the interests of saving time, I’ll quote myself: When teams make bad personal [sic] moves to save money, purely as collateral damage from their own previous stupid move, then the fans become the victims to the folly that is the NBA and its old boy’s network. I hate any move that involves a team giving away an asset just to save money, with them deeming the financial saving as “necessary” due to their own cap mismanagement. That’s exactly what happened here – the Nuggets, perennial tax payers, were forced to start saving money by their ownership, and the best way for them to do this was to dump Camby’s salary for no return. The moved saved them $20 million this season, plus about the same next season, yet it saw an NBA team literally gifting away one of their best players at a position persistently devoid of much quality. Anyone’s […]

Posted by at 12:05 PM

Giving Away Marcus Camby Should Not Be The Sum Total Of The Plan
July 16th, 2008

The Denver Nuggets traded former DPOY Marcus Camby to the L.A. Clippers yesterday, for, essentially, nothing. The Nuggets got no more than the right to swap second-round picks with L.A. in 2010, a year in which the Clippers will have the lower pick anyway, meaning that Denver won’t be exercising the option. That’s it. That was their return. That was what they got. That was what they got for Marcus, freaking, Camby. Marcus Camby is a former DPOY award winner. He may have another one left in him yet, too. Camby is a high calibre player – last year, he averaged 13.1 rebounds and 3.6 blocks a game. 13.1 rebounds per game is a lot of rebounds. And 3.6 is a hell of a lot of blocks. He can pass, and also shoot 20-footers, if you give him a week to load them up and 40 feet of elbow room. Camby is a rare commodity in this league; he is a centre that isn’t static. He is at the peak of his career, and strangely also at his peak physical condition, having set his new personal best for games played in a season with a commendable 79 appearances last year. Without wanting to go overboard and do something silly, such as calling him a dynamic two-way player, it’s safe to say that Camby is one of the best at his position, the position that is so hard to fill that General Managers will consistently try anything to try and strike gold. In a league where most executives would willingly sacrifice their closest family members to get an elite centre, the Clippers now have two. And they’re not even overpaid. They got one of them for freakin’ nothing. How does Marcus Camby fit alongside Wolfgang Kaman? I don’t know, but it […]

Posted by at 9:01 PM

Dreaming about Mark Madsen
March 16th, 2008

Do you ever stop and think about that time that Mark Madsen shot seven three-pointers in an overtime game, when Minnesota and Memphis had the most blatant tank-off that history has ever seen? No, nor did I. That is, not until this morning, when I woke up thinking about it. It’s not an entirely normal thing to wake up thinking about, even for the most hardcore Madsen fans amongst us. (For we are all Mark Madsen fans, obviously.) But some part of this must have ruffled my feathers, stoned my crows and enraged my loins, because this was all that i could think about for about three minutes after waking up. It is now a permanent blot on the NBA landscape. The situation Minnesota found themselves in – not good enough to make the playoffs, not bad enough to bottom out without trying to – left them deliberately trying to lose games. It needn’t have done, but General Manager Kevin McHale had already trded away Minnesota’s first rounder that season, as it was owed to the L.A. Clippers along with Sam Cassell in exchange for Lionel Chalmers and┬áMarko Jaric. The pick, however, had top ten protection, and so in order to be able to keep it, Minnesota had to lose with a bit more regularity and finesse than they were doing up until that point. They did this with aplomb, telling Kevin Garnett to stop playing (or so we thought), playing their better players for merely token minutes, and letting their lesser players do whatever the hell they wanted, in what then-head coach Dwane Casey called “letting them have some fun” (to be read as “playing really badly so that we lose”.) The fact that they met an equally-tanking Memphis team, who were tanking for a different reason, was an […]

Posted by at 3:43 PM

How NBA Playoff Eligibility Works
February 24th, 2008

A lot of people (four) have either e-mailed me about this or asked me about it on t’internet in recent days, about when players have to sign with a new team by in order to be eligible for the playoffs. Apparently there’s some confusion on the issue, particularly surrounding the March the 1st date. So let’s clarify. There is NO SIGN-BY DATE for playoff eligibility. You can sign whenever you want – even on the last of the regular season if you like – and still be eligible for the playoff roster. The only stipulation is that you cannot have been on another team’s roster – or on waivers from another team – at close of business on March 1st. This makes the March 1st date a waive-by date, not a sign-by date. And that’s why players frequently get waived in the run-up to it, (such as Jamaal Magloire, Brent Barry and Flip Murray have so far) then sign with a new team after it, and still appear in the playoffs. An example of this is Anthony Carter last season with the Denver Nuggets. He and Von Wafer both signed with Denver just before the end of the last regular season, because the Nuggets needed some insurance guards for the playoff push and didn’t want to sign them earlier because they were so deep into luxury tax territory. Vaekeaton didn’t then play in a playoff game for them, but Carter did, and the Dallas Mavericks and Kevin Willis did the same thing. So there we go. Fun stuff.

Posted by at 5:34 AM

30 teams in 36 or so days: Denver Nuggets
September 27th, 2007

Players acquired via free agency or trade: Chucky Atkins (three years, $9.72 million) Steven Hunter (acquired from Philadelphia) Bobby Jones (acquired from Philadelphia)   Players acquired via draft: None   Players retained: Anthony Carter (waived, then re-signed, saving about $800,000) Eduardo Najera (opted in)   Players departed: Reggie Evans (traded to Philadelphia) Steve Blake (signed with Portland) DerMarr Johnson (signed in Italy) Jamal Samspon (signed with Dallas)   Words: When you spend $162 million on only three players in one offseason, you’re generally making a commitment to those as core players. Denver did this last offseason with Nene, Carmelo Anthony and Reggie Evans, investing in two power forwards despite also having the massive contract of Kenyon Martin firmly entrenched at the position, as well as Joe Smith and Eduardo Najera on hand to stand around looking sheepish. When you then trade your only significant expiring contract and both first-rounders this season (and Andre Miller) for soon-to-be-fading star Allen Iverson, you’re making a subsequent commitment to go for it all with what you have. You’re foregoing the few assets you have, placing yourself deep into luxury tax territory to try and put your team over the top. It’s noble. And they could not realistically turn down the Iverson deal because of the small price tag. But, in the short-term at least, it hasn’t really worked. Denver hasn’t had their shooting guard position solved for a number of years. The days of the Kiki Vanderweghe era saw such greats as Predrag Savovic and Vincent Yarborough blemish the position, and while Vanderwghe did pursue a number of options to fill the position (ranging from Manu Ginobili to Clyde Drexler, of all people), the best he could manage was a brief flirtation with Voshon Lenard. New GM Mark Warkentein picked up The Prodigy Formerly […]

Posted by at 11:54 PM