Fantasy Basketball News

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Memphis F Brandon Clarke has been named the 2019 Summer League MVP. (Source: Memphis Grizzlies on Twitter )

Fantasy Impact: One of the premier big men in college basketball last season at Gonzaga, Clarke fell into Memphis’ lap when they traded up two spots to select him 21st overall in this year’s draft. He led the eight-seed Grizzlies to a Summer League Finals appearance behind 14.6 points, 8.6 rebounds, and 1.6 blocks per game. Summer league play should always be taken with a grain of salt given the reduced level of competition, but Clarke already looks like a capable young rim protector and a player who could contribute in his first season.

JR Smith waived by Cavaliers

Mon, Jul 15th 5:55pm EDT
By Omar Abushaib

The Cleveland Cavaliers have waived guard JR Smith after failing to reach a buyout or find a willing trade partner. (Source: Shams Charania on Twitter )

Fantasy Impact: Smith will be a free agent after spending five years with the Cavaliers. While many might suspect he would join the Lakers, ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski reports that's "unlikely". At this point in his career Smith won't play a huge role with whatever team he ends up on leaving him with limited fantasy value.

Ben Simmons has agreed to a 5-year/$170M contract extension to remain with the Philadelphia 76ers. (Source: Shams Charania on Twitter )

Fantasy Impact: As expected. Retaining Simmons was always a priority for the 76ers, who have a dynamic core made up of Joel Embiid, Tobias Harris, Al Horford and Simmons. Those four players are now on huge contracts, making Philadelphia’s cap situation a bit perilous in the next two years. Expect Simmons to remain a nightly triple-double threat who could elevate his game further by improving his jump shot.

Tyson Chandler is signing a one-year contract to play for the Houston Rockets. Chandler scored 3.1 PPG and grabbed 5.6 RPG for the Suns and Lakers last year. (Source: Adrian Wojnarowski on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: The Rockets continue their reconstruction of the roster, as they add the 7'1" center to the bench. Chandler played the fewest minutes per game in his career this past season, and his stats took a hit as a result. Chandler is unlikely to produce the double-double numbers that he once averaged, though the Rockets tend to utilize their centers well, e.g., Nene and Kenneth Faried.

The Houston Rockets have dealt Chris Paul and first-round picks in the 2024 and 2026 draft to the Oklahoma City Thunder in exchange for Russell Westbrook. The two teams are swapping picks in 2021 and 2025 as well. (Source: Adrian Wojnarowski on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: Houston has finally given up on the James Harden and Chris Paul pairing by getting rid of the 34-year-old point guard. While the future Hall-of-Famer had a decent season last year, the Rockets felt that they needed to acquire Westbrook to prolong their championship window. Paul will join a depleted Thunder roster with very few pieces outside of Steven Adams and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander.

Russell Westbrook has been traded to the Houston Rockets in exchange for Chris Paul, first round picks in 2024, 2026, and pick swaps in 2021, and 2025. (Source: Adrian Wojnarowski on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: Russell Westbrook has reunited with James Harden to form quite the dynamic duo in Houston. With the Thunder entering a rebuilding phase, they decided to move on from Westbrook and his enormous contract, which includes a $46.7 million player option in 2022-2023. His fantasy value will take a small hit, due to the fact he is sharing the ball now with James Harden. Westbrook averaged 22.9 points, 11.1 rebounds, 10.7 assists, and 1.9 steals in 73 games for Thunder last season.

Marcus Morris had originally agreed to a two-year, 20 million dollar deal with the Spurs. On Thursday, the Spurs reportedly pulled their offer to Morris, who in turn will sign a one-year, 15 million dollar deal with the New York Knicks. (Source: Shams Charania on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: The Knicks will not have as much talent this upcoming year as the Celtics did this past year, where Morris played. Morris will be relied upon more to score on the Knicks when he is on the floor; whereas the Celtics had players such as Kyrie Irving, Jayson Tatum, and Al Horford to score last year. However, it is important to note that the addition of Taj Gibson and Julius Randle this offseason will mean that Morris will have to earn his minutes in a crowded front court.

Kelly Oubre Jr. is coming back to the Phoenix Suns on a two-year, $30M contract. The Washington Wizards traded Oubre Jr. midseason to the Suns last year. (Source: Adrian Wojnarowski on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: Oubre Jr. scored 15.2 PPG across both teams, but saw major scoring improvements once he left the Wizards; in fact, his average jumped from 12.9 to 16.9 PPG once he joined the Suns. Given that Phoenix will likely be a lottery-bound team for the foreseeable future, the 23-year-old forward will continue to receive plenty of playing time as they attempt to crawl out of Western Conference cellar.

Tyus Jones heading to Memphis

Wed, Jul 10th 6:45am EDT
By Brad Camara

Tyus Jones is joining the Grizzlies after the Timberwolves declined to match the three-year, $24 million offer sheet. (Source: Adrian Wojnarowski on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: Jones was a restricted free agent, and Minnesota declined to match the offer. He will serve as the backup point guard to second overall pick Ja Morant. Jones averaged 6.9 points, 4.8 assists, 2.0 rebounds, and 1.2 steals in 68 games for the Timberwolves last season.

Kyrie Irving officially signed a four-year, $136 million contract with the Nets on Saturday. (Source: NBA Transactions)

Fantasy Impact: Irving was one of the first players to sign in free agency, but wasn’t unable to sign with Nets until July 6. The contract also includes a $36.5 million player option in 2022-2023. Irving averaged 23.8 points, 5.0 rebounds, 6.9 assists, and 1.5 steals in 67 games for the Celtics last season.

Jon Leuer waived by the Bucks

Tue, Jul 9th 9:36pm EDT
By Brad Camara

Jon Leuer was waived the by the Bucks on Tuesday. (Source: Shams Charania on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: Leuer was acquired by the Bucks in mid June for Tony Snell and the 30th pick of the 2019 NBA Draft to the Pistons. He will not take the court with the Bucks, and will try to latch onto another team this offseason. Leuer averaged 3.8 points, and 2.4 rebounds in 41 games for the Pistons last season.

The Golden State Warriors are releasing fan-favorite Shaun Livingston after spending the last five years in the Bay, winning three championships. (Source: Adrian Wojnarowski on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: The Warriors are continuing their youth movement and getting further under the salary cap by shedding the contract of the 33-year-old veteran. Livingston did, however, have his worst season with the Warriors last season, only averaging 4 PPG and 1.8 APG. Despite this transaction, Livingston still has a strong desire to continue playing, and will likely have several suitors.

The Golden State Warriors are sending center Damian Jones and a second-round pick to the Atlanta Hawks for C/F Omari Spellman.

Fantasy Impact: The Damian Jones experiment comes to an end in Oakland after three years, as he will now be competing for minutes on a youthful Hawks roster. A change of scenery may be what's best for the 24-year-old center, as he often struggled even in the potent Warriors offense. With Jones out of the picture, either Willie Cauley-Stein or Kevon Looney has a chance to crack the starting five.

Jabari Parker has agreed to a 2-year, $13M deal to join the Atlanta Hawks. (Source: Shams Charania on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: Parker agreed to the deal after his team option was declined by Washington last month. The former No. 2 overall pick averaged 15.0 points and 7.2 rebounds in 25 games for the Wizards last season and should be a quality bench option for Atlanta.

Patrick McCaw has agreed on a contract to return to the Toronto Raptors. It is reportedly a two-year deal. (Source: Blake Murphy on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: 2018-19 was an odd year for the 23-year-old guard. After a contract hold out in Golden State led to him heading for Cleveland on an offer sheet, he was then promptly waived and picked up by the Raptors. All in all, he only played in 29 games last season; garnering 2.6 points, 1.7 rebounds and one assist per game. While clearly not a fantasy option, McCaw has still won the championship in each of his three seasons in the NBA. So, there's that.

The Oklahoma City Thunder have traded Jerami Grant to the Denver Nuggets in return for a first-round pick in 2020. (Source: Adrian Wojnarowski on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: The Thunder continue their firesale, and one has to wonder if their MVP point guard is the next one to be dealt. Regardless, the Nuggets are receiving a versatile stretch-forward who scored a career-high 13.2 PPG and hit 39.2% of his three-point attempts. Grant may not crack the starting lineup in the Mile High City just yet, but the 24-year-old joins a young core ready to take another step in the playoffs.

JaMychal Green re-upped with the Clippers by signing a two-year, $10 million deal to remain with the team. (Source: Shams Charania on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: Green chose to stay with the revamped Clippers as they are looking like strong championship contenders. He turned down more lucrative offers to remain in Los Angeles. He'll provide some nice forward depth behind superstars Kawhi Leonard and Paul George. In 24 regular season games with the Clippers last year, Green averaged 8.7 points and 6.5 rebounds. He's likely to see a minutes reduction next season and is a better real life contributor than a fantasy one.

Avery Bradley intends to sign with the Los Angeles Lakers on a two-year, $9.7M contract, with a player option for the second year. (Source: Adrian Wojnarowski on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: Bradley has been a bit of a journeyman, bouncing between the Pistons, Clippers, and Grizzlies the last two season after spending his first seven years in Boston. While he may not be able to put up double-digit scoring that he used to on this suddenly deep Lakers team, Bradley did average 16.1 points in 14 games with the Pistons last season. A starter essentially his whole career, the two-time All-Defensive team guard will now have to fight for playing time against the likes of Alex Caruso, Quinn Cook, and Kentavius Caldwell-Pope.

Rondae Hollis-Jefferson has reached an agreement to sign a one-year deal with the Toronto Raptors. He averaged 8.9 points, 5.3 rebounds and 1.6 assists in 59 games with the Brooklyn Nets last season. (Source: Shams Charania on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: Hollis-Jefferson was a victim of the Nets aggressive moves in free agency, as they declined to extend him a qualifying offer in order to create cap space. This signing shows that the Raptors are clearly seeking depth at their wing positions after reports of also signing Stanley Johnson emerged on July 6. Hollis-Jefferson is still just 24, but his only fantasy relevant season to date was on a very weak 2017-18 Nets team, which saw him average 13.9 points, 6.8 rebounds, 2.5 assists and one steal.

Delon Wright was traded to the Mavericks in a sign-and-trade deal with the Grizzlies in exchange for two second-round picks. Wright will sign a three-year, $29 million contract. (Source: Adrian Wojnarowski on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: Wright could challenge for the starting role at either back-court spot in 2019-2020, pending on how Dallas uses star Luka Doncic. He could have a safe path to minutes, and will compete with Tim Hardaway and Seth Curry for a back-court spot. Wright averaged 8.7 points, 3.5 rebounds, 3.3 assists, and 1.2 steals in 75 games for the Grizzlies/Raptors last season.