Raptors guard Greivis Vasquez talks about fitting into his new team, why its worked in Toronto and what he thinks his team can do in the post-season.
The Guards You Can Get: There is no escaping the importance of the point guard position in the NBA, not only in terms of playmaking and leading a team, but in the modern NBA the point guard spot has become the catalyst for almost everything teams do.
As NBA teams enter the offseason, addressing or upgrading the point guard spot will come front and center, and while the 2014 NBA Draft class might inserts two or three starting-caliber guards, most teams will look to free agency to solve their point guard woes.
The 2014 NBA Free Agent class doesn’t feature a lot of All-Star type players, but there are some guys who have turned their situations around this year and might be headed towards a nice free agent payday. Here are the top six “obtainable” free agent point guards:
Kyle Lowry – Toronto Raptors – $6,210,000:
PPG- 17.5 APG- 7.6 RPG- 4.8 PER- 20.10
Lowry sits atop the available point guard crop, and while he has really brought things around this season in Toronto, his future with the club is murky at best. Lowry, who just turned 28 this month, is posting some of the best numbers of his career and has been the catalyst for the Raptors’ run to the postseason, their first postseason berth since 2008. With unrestricted free agency on the horizon, Lowry will surely get some top shelf offers. The question becomes how much will Toronto put on the table to keep him and is that even an option for Lowry?
Sources close to Lowry say he is actually really happy in Toronto. He has grown close with teammate DeMar DeRozan. He has a young guy that he has really connected with and they have rallied around him. In terms of the team situation, Lowry is pretty happy with what he has around him and what the organization has said they’ll do to improve.
So now it comes down to money and free agency. There has been talk that the Miami HEAT may make a run at Lowry and Lowry has long been linked to the LA Lakers, who may have a mountain of free agent cash to spend. Lowry has said over and over that he wants to be in a winning situation, and he has been part of building one in Toronto, the question is will a bigger brand name in the NBA or a more established veteran team pony up enough cash to lure Lowry out of Toronto?
Lowry is in the last year of his contract and will have earned some $6.2 million in salary by season’s end. In his eight NBA seasons Lowry has earned $28.7 million, so its not like he’s hit the NBA lottery and money won’t matter. The Raptors do hold Lowry’s Bird rights, so they can offer him more guaranteed dollars and years than anyone else. The question is how much is it going to take, and what’s the per year price?
»In Related: The 2014 NBA Free Agents List.
Darren Collison – Los Angeles Clippers – $1,900,000:
PPG- 10.8 APG- 3.6 RPG- 2.2 PER- 16.29
Collison has a $1.95 million player option for next season that he may not exercise, meaning he could hit free agency again and see if his value has gone up.
Collison has been the poster child for inconsistency as a pro. In New Orleans he looked every bit the part of starting point guard. However, in Indiana and Dallas he struggled. When Chris Paul went down to injury in LA earlier this year, Collison was thrust into the starting lineup and against posted gaudy numbers – 53.7 percent field goal shooting, 45 percent three pointing shooting in 31.2 minutes a game, helping lead the team to a 12-4 record in January.
It’s a hard to bet on Collision as a starter given his track record elsewhere, but if a team is grabbing a young point guard in the draft, and is looking for a steady hand to fill in around the learning curve, Collision might be an interesting option.
Collision continues to show that when he gets minutes, he can produce and when you are talking about the next tier of point guards he might be the best of the bunch.
Ramon Sessions – Milwaukee Bucks – $5,000,000
PPG- 11.7 APG- 3.8 RPG- 2.4 PER- 16.25
Sessions will turn 28 in April and will likely enter the free agent pool as the third best free agent guard of the bunch. Sessions didn’t exactly blow the doors off the opportunity he had in Charlotte, which was one of the reasons he was traded to Milwaukee at the deadline.
Since arriving in Milwaukee, Sessions has played well, but far from stellar. Its unlikely teams knock down Sessions’ door as a free agent answer as a starter, but as a quality backup guard, Sessions still looks to have a lot of value. Like Collison, a team drafting a rookie point guard could do worse than Sessions as a security blanket as a young player learns the game.
Sessions is coming off a final contract year that will pay him $5 million this season. That number might be a little high for a next contract, but given how few point guards are really available in free agency, Session may find his price tag in the neighborhood, the question is how many years need to be on the deal to obtain his services?
Jarret Jack signed a four-year, $25 million deal last summer with Cleveland after posting slightly lower stats than Sessions posted in Milwaukee, so there is a little bit of market precedent for his situation.
»In Related:NBA Team Salaries At A Glance.
D.J. Augustin – Chicago Bulls – $650,215
PPG- 12.5 APG- 4.3 RPG- 1.8 PER- 16.06
To be brutally honest, Augustin looked like he was on his way out of the NBA, then he landed in Chicago with the Bulls and has absolutely blown the doors off what people thought about him.
Augustin has posted some of the best numbers of his career and has really fallen into a nice groove with the Bulls. Unfortunately the Bulls may not have the means to keep him beyond this year, although a lot of his teammates are campaigning for him.
The Bulls currently have $63 million in salary commitments to seven players next year. So, unless the Bulls use their one-time Amnesty cut on Carlos Boozer, which may or may not happen, they don’t have a lot to work with beyond their cap exceptions.
The Bulls have been talking with Nikola Mirotic, whom they hold the draft rights to, about coming over from Spain next season. Mirotic has a hefty contract with Real Madrid and an even heftier buyout said to be worth $3.1 million. In order for the Bulls to make it worth it to Mirotic to payout the buyout, they are going to have to give him likely every dime of their Mid-Level exception, meaning no real exception money for Augustin.
If Mirotic opts to remain in Spain for one more year there may be a window for Augustin to get a new deal with the Bulls.
The answer to obtaining both players for next year might be to Amnesty Boozer, and while that is easy for fans and media members to talk about, there is a hard cost of $16.8 million that comes with that scenario. Would Chicago really pay $16.8 million for the right to give Mirotic and Augustin new deals? The answer there is likely no.
If the Bulls could find a team with cap space willing to take on Boozer’s final year for little or nothing in return, then there is a scenario that makes good business sense for the Bulls.
Augustin’s track record might keep his open market value somewhat low and that does play into Chicago’s favor, but when you look at the two-year, $4 million deal Denver’s Nate Robinson got this past summer after a similar rebirth in Chicago, that might be the price tag Augustin could command. That’s still a very workable number for Chicago.
»In Related:The 2015 NBA Free Agent List.
Jerryd Bayless – Boston Celtics – $3,135,000
PPG- 9.0 APG- 2.7 RPG- 2.0 PER- 12.26
Since arriving in Boston, Bayless has put up some decent numbers, especially from the three point line. Viewed around the league as more of a hybrid two-guard, Bayless may not get a lot of love as a point guard, but he does look to be an interesting option for a team looking for a solid guard off the bench. Bayless has become a reasonable defender and might fit nicely on a veteran team looking for a bargain priced player.
Bayless really blossomed last year in Memphis, especially after moving to more of a backup two guard role for the Grizzlies.
As a free agent, he may not see the kinds of contract dollars he is currently earning in the final year of his deal worth roughly $3.13 million, but he could be an interesting addition.
Signing Bayless may not get a team’s fans excited, but looking at who is available, he is clearly one of the better options on the board.
Shaun Livingston – Brooklyn Nets – $884,293
PPG- 8.1 APG- 3.2 RPG- 3.2 PER- 14.74
Maybe it’s because of the history with his knees, but Shaun Livingston continues to get passed around and almost everywhere he’s landed he’s had success. Brooklyn’s midseason turn around can be traced directly back to Jason Kidd leaning on Livingston. When you look at how the team plays with him on the floor, it’s hard to imagine he’s playing for $880,000.
In 2007, Livingston suffered arguably one of the more gruesome knee injuries we’ve seen in the modern NBA and has worked his way back to not only being a productive player, but he’s proven again this year that he’s a guy who make an impact.
Unfortunately for Brooklyn, that means a higher price tag that they may be unwilling to match. It’s unlikely that someone is coming with a ton of money for Livingston this summer, but it does seem more likely than not that someone is going to put a real multi-year offer on the table and he is going to need to take it.
When you look at his impact on the Nets, it’s hard to imagine a team in need of a solid and dependable veteran guard isn’t going to put some cash on the table. For Livingston, who was once considered a $60 or $70 million player, he is going to have to go where the dollars are.
While these are the top six unrestricted point guards, there are a few others worth knowing. You can find the complete list of 2014 NBA Free Agents here.
Later this week, we’ll look at the top free agent shooting guards and the top free agent small forwards.
Six Things You Need To Read: Here are some of the things you need to read to get your NBA Day started right:
- Thibodeau: Noah Deserves MVP Consideration.
- Head to Head: Is Tanking an Issue in the NBA?
- Full 2014 NBA Mock Draft – 3/31/14.
- Sources: Wiggins to Declare for NBA Draft.
- Carmelo: ‘We Control Our Own Destiny’.
- Vogel: Frustrations Are Mounting with Team.
More Twitter: Make sure you are following all of our guys on Twitter to ensure you are getting the very latest from our team: @stevekylerNBA, @AlexKennedyNBA, @TheRocketGuy, @LangGreene, @EricPincus, @joelbrigham, @SusanBible @TommyBeer, @JabariDavisNBA , @NateDuncanNBA , @MokeHamilton , @JCameratoNBA and @YannisNBA.
NBA Daily: One Year Later, Yogi Ferrell Continues To Rise
One year after a turbulent start to his NBA career, Yogi Ferrell is still thriving with the Dallas Mavericks.
It was never going to be easy for Yogi Ferrell.
At just 6-foot-0, there were major concerns about Ferrell and his ability to effectively contribute at the professional level, so the 24-year-old was a near-lock to go undrafted despite his impressive haul of collegiate honors. In 2016, he did not hear his name called on draft night — but for a gamer like Ferrell, pushing on was always the only option.
However, on this particularly cold mid-season evening, Ferrell sits at his locker and studies film on a tablet. He looks comfortable and focused as if he knows that this moment cannot be ripped away from him once again. Today, Ferrell is the Dallas Mavericks’ backup point guard and is settled into a consistent, steady role amongst a currently crowded backcourt. For Ferrell, he now finally has the life of an everyday NBA player.
But just over one year ago, Ferrell had to take the road less traveled to reach professional basketball for good.
“It was actually about this time [last year] when [the Nets] decided to waive me and I went back to Long Island,” Ferrell told Basketball Insiders. “I didn’t know I’d be here. I’m just thankful for the opportunity the Mavericks gave me and I’m just still trying to be here in Dallas.”
To be exact, the Brooklyn Nets waived Ferrell on December 8th, 2016. 365 days (and counting) later, Ferrell has earned his guaranteed contract but he’s still playing like he has something to prove.
* * * * * *
In order to fully understand Ferrell’s winding journey, it’s necessary to go back to where his story really kicked off: Summer League. Following a solid audition in Las Vegas — 8.8 points, 1.5 rebounds and 1.8 assists per game — Ferrell was shifted to Brooklyn’s G-League affiliate, the Long Island Nets. With the offseason signings of Jeremy Lin and Greivis Vasquez, plus the addition of rookie point guard Isaiah Whitehead, there was no room for Ferrell and he was the last man cut in training camp.
Before the Nets could even blink, Vasquez re-injured his problematic ankle just three games into the campaign, an ailment that would eventually require season-ending surgery. Lin, of course, lasted just two more games before a hamstring injury derailed the key free agent acquisition until deep into the season.
Out of nowhere, it was time for Ferrell.
After waiving Vasquez, the Nets signed Ferrell on November 9th — the same day as his NBA debut, where he logged five points and three assists in a 14-point loss to the New York Knicks. But as the Nets continued to free fall without their veteran point guards, Ferrell grew more confidently into his role and was a solid fit in head coach Kenny Atkinson’s three-point heavy rotation. Over 10 contests with Brooklyn, Ferrell tallied just 5.4 points and 1.7 assists in 15 minutes per game. Nonetheless, for a suddenly talent-deficient roster, it appeared as if the point guard was poised to stick around through the winter.
In a surprise twist of fate, the Nets waived Ferrell to sign Spencer Dinwiddie to a partially guaranteed three-year deal, opting to tie their future to a different G-League point guard instead. Just like that, it was back to Long Island for Ferrell — but surprisingly, it wasn’t something that he hung his head over for too long.
“I knew my next opportunity was going to come — I didn’t know when, but I just wanted to make sure I was ready for it,” Ferrell said. “I had a great coach — coach [Ronald] Nored — and he told me to still go about my business as if I was still in the NBA. I didn’t get all the luxuries, but if you treat yourself like a pro, like you’re there now, once you get there, it’ll make it easier and you can make a splash.”
Upon returning to the G-League, Ferrell continued his hot streak and ended up averaging 18.7 points and 5.8 rebounds over a total of 18 games — both before and after his NBA call-up with the Nets. Ultimately, it wasn’t long before another franchise took notice of the enigmatic guard and the Mavericks capitalized, signing Ferrell to a 10-day contract while both Deron Williams and Devin Harris were hampered by injury. His debut with Dallas saw Ferrell tally nine points and seven assists in a win over the San Antonio Spurs and future Hall of Famer Tony Parker — but somehow, that was only the beginning
Affectionately nicknamed Yogi-Mania — a play on Linsanity, Lin’s historic stretch with the Knicks back in 2012 — Ferrell re-joined the NBA red-hot, even leading Dallas to back-to-back wins over the Cleveland Cavaliers and Philadelphia 76ers. Quickly thereafter, Ferrell signed a multi-year deal with Dallas and then promptly torched the Portland Trail Blazers for nine three-pointers and a total of 32 points. Over his initial two-week stretch with the Mavericks, Ferrell scored 10 or more points in seven of his first nine games and made a serious claim for a permanent spot in the rotation.
Of course, the multi-year contract offered Ferrell something else he hadn’t yet experienced in the NBA: Job security. After Ferrell’s team option was picked up last June, he was happy to have a role with the Mavericks once again, no matter how big or small. Without the worry of being on borrowed time, Ferrell was able to train, learn the system and embrace of the city of Dallas during the offseason.
“The offseason was pretty good, I played summer league with some of the young guys,” Ferrell said. “It was great to work every day and get to know the coaches better, the area of Dallas better. Headed into training camp, I just wanted to work on my game and I had lot more confidence.”
One of those coaches he’s gotten to know better is Rick Carlisle, an old-school guard that has found success as both a player and coach. Under Carlisle, Ferrell has averaged 28.3 minutes per game so far as a sophomore, good for the third-highest total on the entire roster. Ferrell, who was in the G-League at this time last year, has merited more playing time than any other point guard on the team — a list that includes rookie sensation Dennis Smith Jr. (28.1), J.J. Barea (22.5), and the aforementioned Harris (18.9). For Ferrell, much of his second-year successes have come from simply putting Carlisle’s words of wisdom into action.
“He’s just always telling me to be a threat,” Ferrell told Basketball Insiders of Carlisle. “First of all, be a threat to score because that’s what opens up everything else. If you’re pushing the pace and getting in the paint, attacking, especially for somebody like myself in my position. You want to just cause 2-on-1s and kicks and find whatever the defense gives us.”
While Yogi-Mania was built off of an electric career-altering hot streak, Ferrell has been a contributor this season in a more consistent, experienced way. Building off the All-NBA Rookie Second Team berth Ferrell earned in just 36 games with Dallas last season, the point guard is now often one of the first guards off the bench, a role that Barea has long excelled in. The comparisons between Ferrell and Barea are all too obvious, the latter being another 6-foot-nothing guard that has carved out a 12-year career after going undrafted in 2006.
During the Mavericks’ championship-winning playoff run in 2011, Barea averaged 8.9 points and 3.4 assists, including massive back-to-back 15-plus point outings in Dallas’ series-defining Game 5 and 6 victories. These days, Ferrell is just thankful to have teammates like Barea and Harris to learn from on and off the court.
“I always say that I like watching them, especially how they play,” Ferrell said. “I try to mimic the older guys, Devin and J.J., they’re so synced together when they play, it’s something special to watch. I just try to go out there and mimic what they do, they’ve been successful at it and been in this league for a long time, so I’m just trying to learn from guys like them.”
* * * * * *
Precisely, it’s been 370 days since Ferrell was first waived by Brooklyn and found success at the NBA level that little believed was possible. Not one to let an obstacle get in his way, Ferrell went undrafted and still managed to earn a multi-year contract before he even hit 20 career appearances. For his dominating stretch in the G-League last season, Ferrell was named an All-Star — although he was too busy with Dallas to attend the festivities — and he still went on to earn a spot with the All-NBA Rookie Second Team as well.
Overcoming roadblocks and adversity at every turn, it’d be easy to now exhale and relax — after all, his contract is currently guaranteed and he’s got a solidified role in an NBA rotation — but Ferrell, forever hungry, isn’t ready to stop there. Staying motivated isn’t difficult for Ferrell because he knows that much of his journey is still left in front of him and he’s ready to keep climbing upward.
“I’m a winner, I came from a winning program,” Ferrell said. “My mentality is still to prove that I belong here. I just want to win, that’s it.”
For Ferrell, this isn’t the end of an underdog story — this is just the beginning of something even greater.
Rookie of The Year Watch – 12/13/17
Shane Rhodes checks back in on what’s become a relatively consistent Rookie of the Year race.
It has been a pretty ho-hum Rookie of The Year race so far in the 2017-18 season, with the top rookies staking their claims to this list at the beginning of the season and, for the most part, staying there. While there has been some movement up and down over the season and since our last installment, for the large part those who were on the list remain on the list.
Those players have earned their spots on this list with their play, however. This rookie class is one of the better, more exciting classes in recent memory. These players have just managed to remain at the top of the hill.
Let’s take a look at this week’s rankings.
By virtue of John Collins missing time due to injury, Markkanen jumps back onto this list. However, that’s not to say Markkanen has played poorly this season. On the contrary, the former Arizona Wildcat and current Chicago Bull has played very well; it’s just hard to get recognized when you are on the worst team in the league.
Markkanen is averaging 14.7 points and 8.1 rebounds per game, third and second among rookies, respectively, while adding 1.3 assists per game as well. Athletic enough to get his own shot and big enough to be a mismatch when he’s on the floor, Markkanen is probably the best (healthy) offensively player the Bulls have. While his defensive game isn’t great, his defensive rating of 106.4 still ranks ninth amongst rookies.
Perhaps most importantly, Markkanen inspires hope for a brighter future in Bulls fans that have watched the team plummet from the 50-win team it was just three seasons ago.
His shooting percentages continue to underwhelm and the Dallas Mavericks still have one of the worst records in the NBA, but Dennis Smith Jr. has been one of the Mavs’ bright spots this season while averaging 14.4 points, four rebounds and four assists per game.
While he hasn’t been a great shooter overall, Smith Jr. has managed to be a big contributor on offense for the Mavs, with an offensive rating of 101.4, ninth among rookies, and an assist percentage of 25.2 percent, fourth among rookies. He is second on the team in scoring behind Harrison Barnes’ 18.4 points per game as well. He is still a work in progress, but Dallas has found a keeper in Smith Jr.
4. Kyle Kuzma, Los Angeles Lakers (Last Week: 3)
While the Lakers have stumbled over the past few weeks, Kuzma continues to play well when he is on the floor. He still paces the Los Angeles Lakers in scoring with an average of 16.1 points per game, third among rookies, while also dishing in 6.6 rebounds and 1.5 assists per game.
Kuzma is now second among rookies in double-doubles with eight on the season and three in his last five games. With a diverse offensive game, the power forward should continue to impress as the season goes along.
Donovan Mitchell has been electrifying in recent weeks. Second in scoring among rookies, Mitchell is averaging 17.3 points per game to go along with three rebounds and 3.2 assists. As his confidence has grown, so to have his field goal percentage and three-point percentages. Mitchell has led the Utah Jazz in scoring in 11 of their 27 games, and is second on the Jazz in scoring too, behind Rodney Hood’s 17.7 points per game.
Mitchell became the second rookie ever, first since Blake Griffin in 2011, to score more than 40 points in a single game after going for 41 against the New Orleans Pelicans. Coupling that with his high-flying athleticism, Mitchell has been one of the best rookies to watch this season.
Jayson Tatum is on pace to be only the second rookie ever to lead the league in three-point percentage. In over 38 years, the only other player to do it was Anthony Morrow, who shot 46.7 percent on 2.7 attempts per game during the 2008-09 regular season. Tatum is currently shooting 50 percent on over three attempts per game.
The 19-year-old forward has also made a near seamless transition from the isolation-dominated basketball that he played at Duke, and has flourished as the third, fourth and sometimes even fifth option on offense, having scored in double digits in 25 of 29 games and averaging 13.8 points per game on the season. His defense continues to be better than advertised as well.
Tatum has been Mr. Clutch among rookies as well. In the last five minutes of the fourth quarter or overtime, Tatum has 14 field goals on 21 attempts, seventh in the entire NBA and tops among rookies. In fact, Tatum is the only other rookie in the top 15 in clutch field goals.
While Mitchell has been on fire recently, Tatum has performed well enough to this point where he is still in control of the number two spot among rookies. But the race for this second spot is close and will continue to be close throughout the season. The race for the number one spot on the other hand? Not so much.
It would make for a very boring race if Ben Simmons remained at the top of this list for the entire season. And it looks increasingly likely that that is going to be the case.
Try as they might, the other rookies just can’t hang with Simmons; none of them have the right combination of production and physicality to keep pace with the point-forward. Tatum has been better than advertised while Mitchell and Kuzma have exceeded all predraft expectations, but none of them can produce what Simmons has. With averages of 17.5 points, 8.9 rebounds and 7.7 assists per game, Simmons would be just the second rookie in NBA history, the first since Oscar Robertson during the 1960-61 season, to finish the season with that stat line.
So, unless they combine their powers to become a being with superhuman basketball skills, the other rookies don’t stand a chance against Simmons in the race for Rookie of the Year.
NBA Daily: Another 2018 NBA Mock Draft – 12/13/17
Basketball Insiders’ publisher Steve Kyler drops his latest 2018 first-round NBA Mock Draft.
A little less than a month ago we dropped the first 2018 NBA Mock Draft, which was met with a lot of disdain. Which is often a good thing because it sparks the discussion in NBA circles.
Since that Mock dropped, we’ve seen a bit more play out of some of the top prospects and many of the assumptions made almost a month ago are starting to settle into place a little more clearly.
The prevailing thought from NBA scouts and executives is that the possible 2018 NBA Draft class has a lot more questions than answers. The common view is that outside of the top 3 or 4 players there could be a very wide range on who the next 10-12 players will be; so expect for the second tier to evolve a lot over the course of the college basketball season.
A couple of things have started to surface among NBA scouts and executives, there seem to be three camps emerging around the top overall player – Duke’s Marvin Bagley III and international phenom Luka Dončić, seem to be the leading names mentioned most, with Arizona’s DeAndre Ayton making a strong push into the discussion. We can safely call this a three-horse race at this point.
The prevailing belief is that none of the three is far and away better than the other as a professional prospect, making it more likely than not that the top player selected will have a lot more to do with which team ultimately lands the pick, more so than the player themselves.
This class also seems to be brimming with promising athletic point guards, which unlike last year’s draft, could provide a lot of options for teams still trying to find that impact point guard.
There also looks to be 27 players in the projected top 100 that are 6’10 or bigger, eight of which project in the top 30. To put that into perspective, there were 11 players 6’10 or bigger drafted in the first round of the 2017 NBA Draft, and 17 total in the 60 2017 NBA Draft selections.
As we get into the 2018 calendar year, we’ll start to do deeper dives into the tiers of players and their possible NBA strengths and weakness.
So, with all of that in mind, here is the second 2018 first-round NBA Mock Draft.
Here are some of the pick swaps and how they landed where they are currently projected:
The Philadelphia 76ers are owed the LA Lakers 2018 Draft pick, unprotected, as a result of the 2012 Steve Nash trade with the Suns. The Suns traded that pick to the 76ers as part of the Michael Carter-Williams three-team trade with the Milwaukee in 2015.
The Cleveland Cavaliers are owed the Brooklyn Nets first-round pick as a result of the Kyrie Irving trade this past summer.
The Minnesota Timberwolves are owed the Oklahoma City Thunder’s first-round pick as part of the Ricky Rubio trade this summer. The pick is lottery protected and based on the current standings would not convey.
The Phoenix Suns are owed the Miami HEAT’s first-round pick as part of the Goran Dragic trade in 2015, it is top-seven protected and would convey to Phoenix based on the current standings.
The Atlanta Hawks are owed the Minnesota Timberwolves first round pick as part of the Adreian Payne trade in 2015. The pick is lottery protected and based on the current standings would convey.
The Phoenix Suns are owed the Milwaukee Bucks first-round pick as part of the Eric Bledsoe trade. The pick only conveys if the Bucks pick lands between the 11th and 16th pick, which based on the standings today would not convey.
The Brooklyn Nets are owed the Toronto Raptors first round pick as part of the DeMarre Carroll salary dump trade this past summer. The pick is lottery protected and based on the current standings would convey.
The Atlanta Hawks are owed the Houston Rockets first round pick as part of a three-team deal with the LA Clippers and Denver Nuggets involving Danilo Gallinari and taking back Jamal Crawford and Diamond Stone. The pick is top-three protected and based on the current standings would convey.