Tarik Black

Report: Eric Moreland leaning toward Pistons contract; Lakers, Kings still in mix

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Eric Moreland played all of two minutes total across three games for the Kings’ last season before suffering a labral tear in his shoulder that ended his season (he did get paid his full $507,336 salary because of that, though). Then this summer, with a pretty full roster, the Kings waived the undrafted 6’10” forward rather than guarantee his deal.

So where does he land now? Maybe Detroit, reports Shams Charania of RealGM.

Free agent Eric Moreland has multiple deals to compete for a roster spot in NBA training camp, with the Detroit Pistons as frontrunners, league sources told RealGM. The Los Angeles Lakers and Sacramento Kings are strong under consideration for Moreland, sources said, and their front offices expect the 6-foot-10 forward to settle upon a destination once the final offers are presented.

This would be a camp invite, make-good contract with maybe a little guarantee. Could he make the roster in any of those places? That’s an uphill climb.

Detroit has 17 guaranteed contracts and already is going to have to cut a couple of them. They also have a front line with Ersan Ilyasova and Anthony Tolliver at the four, then three centers in Andre Drummond, Aron Baynes, and Joel Anthony. Not sure where Moreland fits in there.

The Lakers have 12 guaranteed deals but a pretty stacked frontcourt, Mooreland would need to beat out someone like Tarik Black (whom the Lakers like). The Kings have 14 guaranteed contracts and already waived him this summer so he wouldn’t be a guaranteed deal on their books, plus they have Willie Cauley-Stein in his young, shot blocker role.

Mooreland likely chooses whoever gives him the biggest guarantee. It’s about the money.

Will Robert Upshaw be in training camp for the Los Angeles Lakers?

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There were reports that the Lakers and Robert Upshaw had reached a training camp deal way back in July during Summer League — but that turned out to be premature, the contract has never been formally offered. The Lakers put the undrafted Upshaw — an imposing, physical, shot-blocking seven-foot center who was dropped from two college programs — on their Summer League team. He looked like a project Las Vegas, one who may be years from being a rotation player, but one with some promise (he set good screens, for example). He’s the kind of player that teams bring to training camp so they can get a closer look.

But will Upshaw be at Lakers’ training camp?

Upshaw seems to think so. After a Seattle Pro-Am game Upshaw spoke with Scout.com about it — as found by our friend Darius Soriano at Forum Blue and Gold — and said he expects to be at Lakers’ training camp if he does the things he needs to do.

Eric Pincus of the LA Times tweeted something similar.

It’s unlikely Upshaw makes the Lakers’ roster. They will start Roy Hibbert at center and bring Robert Sacre in off the bench, plus they are pretty stacked at the four spot with Julius Randle, Brandon Bass, Tarik Black and Larry Nance Jr. Difficult to imagine Upshaw in that mix right now. This may be something where the Lakers would love to get him on their D-League team and have him work on his conditioning, his offense and game skills, plus show he’s got his life in order.

But first he’s got to get his life on track, and then get to training camp.

Report: Lakers signing undrafted Michael Frazier

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Two players in my top 30 for the 2015 NBA draft went undrafted: No. 23 Christian Wood and No. 26 Michael Frazier.

Wood signed with the Rockets, and now Frazier is headed to the Lakers.

Eric Pincus of the Los Angeles Times:

According to a team spokesman, the former Florida standout is expected to sign with the team over the next few days

A person privy to the details of the agreement, but not authorized to comment publicly, said Frazier will sign a two-year, minimum-salary deal of $1.4 million ($525,093 and $874,636, respectively).

Only $50,000 of his first-year salary will be guaranteed.

Needless to say, I like this deal. This is a small price to pay for someone I believe has first-round ability.

Frazier is a knock-down 3-point shooter. He made 43% of his attempts beyond the arc at Florida, and his 85% mark from the free-throw line supports the idea he’ll continue to shoot well in the NBA.

Frazier’s game is pretty limited to spot-up shooting, but that’s an important skill. If the Lakers get an attention-drawing star – whether it’s Kobe Bryant getting healthy, D’Angelo Russell or Julius Randle developing or a free agent signing – Frazier could fill a key supporting role.

In the meantime, Frazier will compete for an NBA roster spot. The Lakers have 12 players with fully guaranteed salaries plus Jonathan Holmes ($100,000 guaranteed), Tarik Black (unguaranteed) and Jabari Brown (unguaranteed). If the Lakers waive Frazier, they could assign his D-League rights to their affiliate, the Los Angeles D-Fenders. That would keep Frazier in the pipeline, but he could sign with any NBA team.

Lakers to work out Bobby Brown, Toure Murry, others

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As you read this, the Lakers have 12 guaranteed contracts in place for the upcoming season. Then there are a couple non-guaranteed deals from guys who could, maybe even are likely to make the final roster in Tarik Black and Jabari Brown.

But Los Angeles is still looking for guys to get training camp invites and prove they belong in the final 14 (or 15, but most teams leave that last roster spot open for flexibility in trades or due to injury).

The Lakers are bringing in a few interesting names for workouts, reports Marc Stein of ESPN and Dave Pick.

A workout means just that — the Lakers are going to take a look at these guys and decide if they want to invite any of them to training camp in Hawaii. If these guys can get that far (certainly no guarantee, most will not), the Lakers will probably have 18 guys at camp (give or take a couple) and that number will be cut down to 14 or 15 when the season opens.

Meaning there is almost no chance any of these guys are on the opening day roster. But they are going to get their chance.

Report: Lakers and Mavs are frontrunners to sign JaVale McGee

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Since DeAndre Jordan slipped through their fingers this summer, the Mavericks have been in search of a center. They’ve picked up a couple of serviceable backups, the likes of Samuel Dalembert and Zaza Pachulia, but neither of those are long-term solutions. They’ve been linked to JaVale McGee, last seen with the Sixers when not promoting his #JugLife movement on Instagram. Now, they apparently have competition for his services, reports Basketball Insiders’ Alex Kennedy:

McGee has dealt with leg problems for much of the last two seasons, so in order to get consistent minutes on either of these teams, he would have to prove he can stay healthy. He probably has a better chance at cracking the rotation for the Mavs than the Lakers, who traded for Roy Hibbert and have a handful of talented young bigs including Julius Randle, Tarik Black and (potentially) Robert Upshaw. Dallas is much thinner up front with proven talent. If McGee can stay healthy and stay engaged (two very big if’s), he’s the better fit there.