Archive for July 3rd, 2017

Suns sign Josh Jackson to rookie contract

The Phoenix Suns have signed forward Josh Jackson, the team’s selection with the fourth overall pick in the first round of the 2017 NBA Draft, to his rookie contract.

Jackson, an intense competitor and athletic two-way player, was a 2017 Wooden All-America selection and the Big 12 Freshman of the Year in his lone season at Kansas. At 6-8 and 207 pounds, the 20-year-old utilized his all-around game to help the Jayhawks win a Big 12 title, averaging 16.3 points on 51.3 percent shooting, 7.4 rebounds, 3.0 assists, 1.7 steals and 1.1 blocks over 35 contests. With the versatility to play multiple positions, Jackson can create for himself and his teammates on the offensive end while possessing the ability to be elite on the defensive end.

During his one season in Lawrence, Jackson broke or tied four Kansas freshman records with 13 double-doubles, 220 field goals made, 429 field goals attempted and 258 rebounds (tying former Suns forward Danny Manning’s mark set in 1984-85). Over the past 25 years, he became just the fourth freshman in Division I to average at least 15 points, five rebounds and three assists while shooting over 48 percent from the field, joining Ben Simmons in 2015-16, James Harden in 2007-08 and Dwyane Wade in 2001-02.

Jackson will make his professional debut as a member of the Suns’ team at NBA Summer League 2017 in Las Vegas.

The Dallas Mavericks have signed forward Johnathan Motley to a two-way contract. An explanation of that type of contract is below.

Motley (6-10, 230) went undrafted in the 2017 NBA Draft after three seasons at Baylor (2014-17). As a junior, he averaged 17.3 points, 9.9 rebounds, 2.3 assists and 1.1 blocks per game en route to being named Baylor’s first-ever consensus All-American, taking home second-team honors.

What’s more, Motley was selected as the 2017 Karl Malone Power Forward of the Year, becoming first Baylor player to win a major individual award. He was also BU’s first consensus first-team All-Big 12 honoree.

The 6-10 forward is currently competing for the Mavericks’ Orlando summer league team. In two games, Motley is averaging 3.5 points, 3.0 rebounds and 1.0 block per contest.

A native of Houston, Motley led North Shore High School to back-to-back district championships his junior and senior years.

The 2017-18 season will mark the first year NBA two-way contracts will be implemented. NBA teams are allowed to have up to two players under two-way contracts who will spend the bulk of the season in the NBA G League and not more than 45 days with their NBA team.

Two-way players are paid a corresponding daily amount based on the number of days they play in each league. Only players with four-or-fewer years of NBA experience are able to sign two-way contracts, which can be for either one or two seasons.

Suns waive Leandro Barbosa

The Phoenix Suns have waived guard Leandro Barbosa.

Barbosa averaged 6.3 points, 1.6 rebounds and 1.2 assists in 14.4 minutes in 67 appearances with the Suns in 2016-17, the first season of his third tenure with the team and ninth overall. A 14-year NBA veteran, Barbosa ranks 13th in Suns franchise history with 6,443 points and first with 4,825 scored when coming off the bench.

The Los Angeles Lakers have signed guard Lonzo Ball, forward Kyle Kuzma and guard Josh Hart to their NBA rookie contracts, it was announced today by General Manager Rob Pelinka.

Drafted with the second overall selection of the 2017 NBA Draft, Ball averaged 14.6 points, 6.0 rebounds and an NCAA-best 7.6 assists per game in his lone season at UCLA. A consensus First-Team All-American, Pac-12 Co-Player of the Year and Pac-12 Newcomer of the Year, Ball finished the season first among the Pac-12 in assists (7.6), third in steals (1.8) and fifth in field goal percentage (.551). In 2016-17, he became the first player in the conference to average at least 14 points, six rebounds and seven assists per game since Jason Kidd in 1992-93.

Kuzma, the 27th selection in this year’s draft, acquired via trade with the Brooklyn Nets on draft night, averaged 16.4 points, 9.3 rebounds and 2.4 assists for Utah last season. The former All-Pac-12 First Team and Pac-12 All-Defensive Team selection appeared in 96 career games (64 starts) for the Utes, tallying 10.1 points, 5.5 rebounds and 1.5 assists per contest.

Originally selected by the Jazz with this year’s No. 30 draft pick, Hart averaged 18.7 points, 6.4 rebounds and 2.9 assists for Villanova in 2016-17. A consensus First Team All-American and the reigning Big East Player of the Year, the 22-year-old finished the season ranked first in the Big East in points (18.7), fourth in field goal percentage (.510) and fourth in rebounds (6.4).

Warriors free agency update

The NBA champion Warriors, already the league favorites for the title next season, are handling business in free agency. Here’s the San Francisco Chronicle with the latest:

Warriors free agency update

Within the first 24 hours of free agency, Golden State agreed to bring back Stephen Curry on a record-setting five-year, $201 million deal, Shaun Livingston on a three-year, $24 million contract and Andre Iguodala on a three-year, $48 million deal. Kevin Durant is expected to re-sign with the Warriors in coming days.

Now, with its payroll in luxury-tax territory, Golden State must round out its roster with low-cost free agents. Some of the Warriors’ final four spots will be used on players Golden State fans know well. Others, however, will be filled by players who — at first glance, at least — could surprise people.

Outside of Durant, the Warriors have five free agents left: Zaza Pachulia, JaVale McGee, Ian Clark, Matt Barnes and James Michael McAdoo. Pachulia is intent on sticking with Golden State, even if that means leaving money on the table for the second straight year. Odds are that Clark and McGee, both of whom figure to warrant far more than a minimum deal, will parlay productive seasons into sizable contracts with other clubs.

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