Rob Schaefer: LaMelo Ball confirms Warriors, Timberwolves, Pistons and Hornets as only teams he worked out for in person. No to Bulls (@Ian Begley on the question)
More Rumors in this Storyline
Eric Walden: Texas Tech’s Jahmi’us Ramsey said he has not done a workout specifically for the Jazz. He did a Zoom workout that drew 22 times; not sure if the Jazz were on it. Said other than that, he’s not had any contact with the team.
Ian Begley: Stanford’s Tyrell Terry said he worked out in person for Brooklyn. He says he also worked out for Grizzlies. He’s had Zoom interviews with Knicks and Nets. @Mike Vorkunov reported there had been a possibility of a second Zoom w/NYK & Terry. That hasn’t taken place yet, Terry says.
Eric Walden: Stanford guard Tyrell Terry has done multiple Zoom interviews with the Utah Jazz; said his agent has been in contact: “I know there’s interest there. My camp has been in close contact.” No workout with Utah; said he’s only done 2 workouts because of COVID restrictions in Indy.
Ok, some real draft scuttle: the Bulls continue to stump the remainder of the NBA with their intentions at No. 4. Although Deni Avdija is a common match with Chicago, there are a number of conflicting rumors circulating around the league, the latest (and most fascinating) item being that the Bulls are interested in Patrick Williams. Per sources, Williams has worked out for Chicago. Beyond that, it’s still unclear what the actual interest level level is there. At this point, it’s worth naming every other player linked to Chicago, which includes Obi Toppin, Tyrese Haliburton, Killian Hayes and, in the event he’s on the board, LaMelo Ball.
Teams are permitted to conduct at their facilities group workouts of up to eight players in the leadup to training camp. Under HIPAA laws, the Knicks did not announce the identities of those who tested positive but sources indicated it was not any players. The staffers were under quarantine and reportedly asymptomatic. According to a source, the Knicks canceled a workout with point guard Killian Hayes last week because of the COVID-19 outbreak.
NBA teams are permitted to schedule 10 visits of up to 4.5 hours with draft-eligible players for in-person evaluations, interviews or medical evaluation. Five of the Heat’s 10 workouts have been confirmed though league sources or the prospects themselves: North Carolina guard Cole Anthony, Vanderbilt wing player Aaron Nesmith and power rotation players Precious Achiuwa (Memphis), Vernon Carey Jr. (Duke) and Zeke Nnaji (Arizona).
Anthony Slater: James Wiseman says he only worked out for the Warriors and Hornets. No Wolves or anyone below #3.
Austin Kent: James Wiseman worked out with and went out to dinner with the Charlotte Hornets, discussing his fit with the organization. CHA holds the No. 3 pick in Wednesday’s draft.
Eric Walden: Arizona’s Josh Green confirms he worked out for the Utah Jazz last week. Says he spoke with Joe Ingles around the time of the workout to get a sense of the org. After going out to dinner with front office, he came away impressed with the structure of the organization.
Ian Begley: Arizona’s Nico Mannion says he’s had a Zoom interview with Brooklyn. No in-person workout for BKN or NYK. Mannion said the Raptors, Lakers and Jazz are among the teams he’s had in-person workouts with.
Ian Begley: Arizona’s Zeke Nnaji says he’s worked out in person for the Heat, Jazz, Nuggets and Clippers, among other teams.
LaMelo Ball‘s private workouts with teams last week were strong, according to Givony, who suggests that the Warriors were among the teams impressed by what they saw from Ball. Still, Givony and other draft experts view James Wiseman as Golden State’s most likely pick at No. 2.
Chase Hughes: Likely top-10 pick Onyeka Okongwu (USC) is keeping the teams he’s worked out for and interviewed with under wraps. Some prospects have been advised by their agents to do that.
Josh Robbins: Alabama guard Kira Lewis Jr. said on a Zoom call with reporters he worked out individually for the Magic. “Another great workout,” Lewis said. “A lot of teaching points they showed me for my game: how to maybe block off a defender going to the rim.”
Ben Anderson: Dennis Lindsey indicated the @UtahJazz haven’t used all of their predraft workouts yet (they get 10.) Said they were saving some in case they got a late opportunity to workout someone unexpected.
KC Johnson: Kira Lewis Jr.’s workout and visit with the Bulls took place in Florida, where Lewis was based until recently returning home. Speaking on a Zoom call with reporters, Lewis said he enjoyed getting to know Bulls’ brass and felt he showed his speed during his workout.
Rod Beard: Alabama guard Kira Lewis confirms that he has worked out for the #Pistons.
Chase Hughes: UNC guard Cole Anthony has worked out for the Wizards. Also, the Heat and Magic. He said he thought the Wizards workout went “really, really well.”
“I talked to [Thibodeau] — he’s a great coach,’’ Vassell said when asked by The Post about his Knicks workout. “We talked about defense. We talked about what their team is looking for. I feel like I can help that team and fill that void. I just think everything went extremely well with the Knicks and the coach. It would be a blessing if I can be part of that team.’’
An alarming workout video recently surfaced online of Vassell heaving long jumpers with what appeared to be an awkwardly new shooting motion. Teams actually quizzed him about the video. “I’ve seen the video,’’ Vassell said. “I haven’t changed my jump shot. I feel there’s no reason to change my jump shot. It was end of the workout, and we were shooting it a lot deeper from the regular NBA 3-point line. It was the angle she took it. I caught the ball a lot further than I normally do. “But I’ve never attempted to change my jump shot and won’t change it because I’ve had a lot of success with the jump shot I have right now.’’
The Wizards held a workout with Precious Achiuwa last week, the Memphis big man revealed Thursday while meeting with the media ahead of next week’s 2020 NBA Draft. Achiuwa has worked out for three teams, he says, with the Celtics and Heat being the others. He has also interviewed with many more teams over Zoom, including the Wizards earlier in the draft process.
Bleacher Report: LaMelo Ball worked out today for the Warriors, Hornets and Pistons, per @DraftExpress
Rod Beard: Killian Hayes says he’s had a workout with the #Pistons. On playing with Sekou Doumbouya potentially: “It would be great having somebody you know and would help.”
Chris Grenham: Devin Vassell said his zoom call and workout with the Celtics both went really well. “They showed some interest. … Me being able to talk to them and show them what I’ve been working on over the last 6-7 months, I think it really helped.”
Jeff McDonald: French point guard Theo Maldon says the Spurs are one of four teams for whom he has conducted a pre-draft workout. Brooklyn, Boston and Toronto are the others.
The Knicks have also worked out Villanova wing Saddiq Bey, according to league sources. He could slide into the back end of the lottery, but presents an intriguing option at the position with his physical profile and after shooting 45 percent on 5.6 3s per game his sophomore season. He could be an option if the Knicks trade down from No. 8.
Hoop Central: LaMelo Ball had an individual workout today with the Minnesota Timberwolves, via @DraftExpress.
Chase Hughes: Possible No. 1 NBA Draft pick Anthony Edwards (Georgia) says he has worked out for the Timberwolves, Warriors and Hornets. That’s it, and those are the teams with the top three picks. Not surprising. He’s going to go very high, if not first.
Wes Goldberg: Anthony Edwards on his work out with the Warriors in Atlanta: “It was a good workout. It was learning lesson, I learned a lot. That work out changed my mindset. … Just the advice that they gave me, I feel like it changed my mindset.”
Middleton, a two-time All-Star, and the 21-year-old Nesmith not only hail from Charleston, S.C., but also attended the same high school, Porter-Gaud. Some scouts tag Nesmith as the top 3-point shooter in the draft, but his standing isn’t as a high lottery pick. He was injured in his sophomore season, suffering a stress fracture in his right foot that limited him to 14 games. “We compare him to Khris Middleton,’’ Stackhouse told The Post in an email Sunday. “He’s perfect for the wing spot. He has the size. He has the strength and in addition to being a shooter, he is dedicated to the defensive side as well.”
Barry Jackson: I’m told the Heat conducted a private workout with Duke power forward/center Vernon Carey Jr., last week, after interviewing him the day before. Miami has been focusing on several big men in its 10 permitted pre-draft workouts.
Kira Lewis Jr. is widely expected to be selected in the first round of 2020 NBA draft. Known for his blazing speed, Lewis averaged 18.5 points, 5.2 assists and 4.8 rebounds while shooting 36.6 from 3-point range as a sophomore at Alabama, before electing to turn pro. Teams that have visited Lewis for in-person workouts include Detroit, Chicago, New York, Phoenix, Orlando and Minnesota. Many mock drafts have him going in the No. 10-20 range.
Tony Jones: The Utah Jazz have recently worked out University of Arizona shooting guard Josh Green, League Sources tell The Athletic….
Kira Lewis Jr. is gaining steam, earning workouts for the Chicago Bulls, Detroit Pistons and New York Knicks. Sources tell Bleacher Report the Phoenix Suns have a lot of interest as well.
Though Heat officials have not been flying all over the country to use their 10 maximum permitted pre-draft visits, they have shown interest in working out several prospects beyond Arizona center Zeke Nnaji, who auditioned for them Oct. 25. Among others with whom they’ve broached a potential workout: Kentucky combo guard Immanuel Quickley and Texas Tech shooting guard Jahmi’us Ramsey. Both are skilled shooters and both already have done Zoom sessions with the Heat. Quickley, in fact, has interviewed twice with Miami, according to a source.
Miami also was expected to view a group workout for Minnesota center Daniel Oturu and Arizona point guard Nico Mannion, both projected to possibly go in the 20s or 30s. And Miami has done a Zoom session with College of Charleston point guard Grant Riller, another strong shooter projected to go in the late 20s or 30s. (Miami doesn’t have a second-round pick.) Riller averaged 21.9 points and shot 36.2 percent on three-pointers as a senior last season.
Surprisingly, as of midday Friday, the Heat hadn’t asked for a workout with Duke forward/center Vernon Carey Jr., even though he’s living and working out in South Florida. Carey is projected by some to go in the 20s, but his father — the former Dolphins and UM standout offensive lineman — believes he will go sooner. Some mock drafts have him falling into the second round.
Though Heat officials have not been flying all over the country to use their 10 maximum permitted pre-draft visits, they have shown interest in working out several prospects beyond Arizona center Zeke Nnaji, who auditioned for them Oct. 25. Among others with whom they’ve broached a potential workout: Kentucky combo guard Immanuel Quickley and Texas Tech shooting guard Jahmi’us Ramsey.
Both are skilled shooters and both already have done Zoom sessions with the Heat. Quickley, in fact, has interviewed twice with Miami, according to a source.
Though mock drafts have predicted Quickley to go late in the first round or somewhere in the second, some believe the 6-3 guard could end up going in Miami’s range at 20, and the Heat is showing a lot of interest. One NBA evaluator told me he thought the 30s was more realistic, but there are some people in the industry who like him earlier than that.
There are NBA Draft projections that have TCU shooting guard Desmond Bane going somewhere in the depths of the second round. We don’t see it that way, and indications from the Dallas Mavericks are that they value Bane more highly as well, as two sources tell us the Mavs are “hosting” Bane for a pre-draft visit.
LaMelo Ball, Tyrese Haliburton, and Killian Hayes have generated the most buzz among point guards. But Kira Lewis Jr. has seemingly entered the conversation as a potential riser and option for lottery teams. After a workout with the Orlando Magic last Thursday, sources tell Bleacher Report that Lewis worked out for the New York Knicks, Detroit Pistons and Chicago Bulls this week. “Lewis has great speed, creates for himself and others and should thrive in today’s game,” one scout told B/R. “He’s still young [he turned 19 in April] after two years in college. He has upside.”
Ian Begley: From earlier: Kira Lewis Jr.’s workout is one of 10 in-person workouts NYK has attended/will attend, sources confirm. Several teams project Lewis Jr. much higher than he’s been in some mock drafts; top CHA decision-makers watched James Wiseman in person: sny.tv/articles/knick…
Another draft note: top-ranking Charlotte Hornets officials recently watched former Memphis center James Wiseman work out in person, per SNY sources. The Charlotte Observer previously reported that the club had strong interest in Wiseman. The Hornets, per sources, aren’t the only team with a top-10 pick who are enamored with Wiseman.
A note on the Knicks and the 2020 NBA Draft: New York recently saw former Alabama point guard Kira Lewis Jr. work out in person, SNY sources confirm. Lewis, one of the top point guards in the draft, had previously interviewed with the Knicks over a Zoom call, as SNY reported.
Chris Grenham: The Celtics have met with RJ Hampton and are looking to have an in-person workout with him soon, per sources. More info in here, plus my conversation with Hampton on his refined jumper, strengths and pre-draft routine with Mike Miller and Penny Hardaway: https://t.co/qSPrqUDVbL
Jonathan Wasserman: Per source, Kira Lewis Jr. has worked out for the Magic, Knicks and Pistons over the past week, works out for the Bulls today
Less than a month before the NBA Draft, the Heat has ramped up contact with draft prospects, working out Arizona power forward/center Zeke Nnaji on Sunday and interviewing San Diego State point guard Malachi Flynn, according to a source. Under the NBA’s new COVID-19 pre-draft rules, teams can make 10 pre-draft visits to work out prospects. Those visits are not required to be at the player’s college campus.
Darren Wolfson: A few #NBA teams will head to Santa Barbara this week to see Minnesota natives and draft prospects Tre Jones and Daniel Oturu workout. No on the #Timberwolves being there this week. They’re expected to be elsewhere. Limit of being able to see 10 guys in person.
Sources say the Cavs contingent will be general manager Koby Altman, assistant GM Mike Gansey and head coach J.B. Bickerstaff. The Cavs are also planning to dine with Toppin as part of their visit, allowing them to get to know him better on a personal level. According to sources, the Cavs began that introductory process on Thursday with a virtual interview. “He’s a great kid. Came across really well,” a source said.
Marc J. Spears: Arizona forward Zeke Nnaji, PAC-12 Freshman of the Year, worked out for the Heat today, a source said. San Diego State guard Malachi Flynn also worked out for the Raptors today.
Marc J. Spears: Kansas guard Devon Dotson also worked out for the Raptors today, too.
Chris Grenham: JUCO Player of the Year Jay Scrubb has now had in-person workouts with the Blazers, Hornets and Clippers, according to sources. The Celtics have continued to express interest as well.
By all accounts, it was a positive get together, one in which the 19-year-old Israeli impressed observers. Not only did Avdija perform well in the workouts, but Warriors officials were blown away after meeting with him. The universal takeaway was that he’s a “great kid” with an immense work ethic.
With the 2020 NBA Draft less than a month away, the Warriors are still in their information-gathering phase. While it is not clear whether they are considering taking Avdija at pick No. 2 or to trade down to take him later, the meeting itself reveals something. If the Warriors were dead set on trading the No. 2 pick for veteran help, they would not schlep out all the way to Atlanta, where Avdija is based right now. The option of getting and developing a young player is clearly on the table.
Toppin is 22 and appears to be the most NBA-ready in this class. However, his ceiling doesn’t appear to scream “multiyear All-Star.” People I’ve talked to believe Toppin will be a solid player for many years, but choosing him doesn’t necessarily point toward an emphasis on the future. Almost any other selection does.
Key for Makur Maker is ensuring he is a first-round draft pick. If it appears teams will not draft him in the first round he will take up a college scholarship, build up his draft stock and take another shot at the NBA next year. Maker and his guardian Ed Smith are hoping the NBA allows face-to-face workouts with teams before next month’s draft. “If Makur gets workouts with NBA teams he feels he will be a first-round pick,” Smith said.
The same goes for Ball, who played a dozen games this winter in Australia’s National Basketball League before a foot injury prompted him to return to the United States. His statistics were impressive—17.0 points, 7.4 rebounds and 6.8 assists in 31.2 minutes per game—but again, NBA executives say they’d feel more comfortable selecting him if they could study him in person when he talks about the anticipated involvement of his father, LaVar Ball, who became persona non grata with the Lakers after they drafted one of his other sons, Lonzo, three years ago.
Adrian Wojnarowski: UNC guard Coby White — perhaps the fastest rising prospect on the board — had a private workout with the Knicks at team’s facility today, league sources tell ESPN. Knicks have been locked on RJ Barrett at No. 3, but summoned White after Darius Garland’s workout yesterday.
Jeremy Woo: League sources tell me and @Jake Fischer that the Celtics had the following players in today for a last-minute workout: Darius Bazley, Jalen Lecque, Tremont Waters, Jordan Bone, Chris Clemons and Jared Harper. Boston has picks 14, 20, 22 and 51 and is expected to be active.
Mark Medina: The Warriors had a pre-draft workout today for some prospects, and I’m told that Jarrell Brantley and Isaiah Roby were part of that group. Looks like Warriors were evaluating prospects today to consider for their No. 58 pick.
Chris Grenham: In other news… Brewster Academy’s Jalen Lecque and Campbell’s Chris Clemons will each have their second workout with the Celtics tomorrow in Boston.
Jordan Schultz: Purdue-FW SG John Konchar recently had workouts with the #Warriors, #Kings and #Rockets, per source. Keep in mind his stellar 64 percent TS percentage as well.
The New Orleans Pelicans exercised its team option on Head Coach Alvin Gentry’s contract for the After Garland pulled out of the NBA draft combine in Chicago last month and sat out his agency’s (Klutch Sports) pro day in Los Angeles, draft pundits wondered whether he had received a promise from a lottery team. Garland and his agent, Rich Paul, lifted the smoke screen this week, however, as the guard granted private workouts to both the Los Angeles Lakers and Cleveland Cavaliers in L.A., sources told ESPN.
Both workouts occurred prior to the Lakers’ blockbuster trade Saturday for New Orleans Pelicans star Anthony Davis, which included Los Angeles sending the No. 4 overall pick to the Pelicans, sources said. Garland impressed with his shot-making ability and deep range, according to sources present for the Lakers’ workout.
Tom Withers: Michigan’s Ignas Brazdeikis worked out for #Cavs today. He averaged 14.8 points, 5.4 rebounds and was B1G freshman of year in one season for new Cleveland coach John Beilein.
Brian Lewis: Terry Harris – brother of #Sixers free agent Tobias Harris – worked out for the #OKCThunder today. He worked out for the #Jazz before that, and for both the #Knicks and #Nets last week. He shot well for Brooklyn. @TerryHarris115
Gery Woelfel: With the NBA draft set for Thursday night, the Bucks conducted a pair of important six-player workouts on Monday. Arkansas center Daniel Gafford was in attendance but didn’t participate in drills.
Rod Boone: #Hornets final pre-draft workout: Morning session: Tyus Battle, Syracuse; Goga Bitadze, Mega Vizura; Matur Maker, Zlatorog; Jeremiah Martin, Memphis; Matt Mooney, Texas Tech; Brandon Randolph, Arizona
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