Wednesday, July 6, 2022

Clippers draft Michigan forward Moussa Diabate

PLAYA VISTA — The Clippers were quiet until the No. 43 overall pick, when they called out Moussa Diabate from Michigan State midway through the second round of the NBA Draft on Thursday. French striker.

That’s it. The Clippers ended their seven-year streak of draft-night trades by selecting Diabate — 6-foot-10, 210 pounds with a 7-3 wingspan — and made no other move.

Experts see Diabate as an advantageous option. As a freshman, he averaged 9.0 points and 6.0 rebounds in 24.8 minutes per game while shooting 54.2 percent from the field. He shot just 61.9 percent from the free throw line and was prone to fouls at times.

A Big-10 rookie selection, he’s tall, athletic, and natural. Before the consortium, he told reporters he hoped to find a situation that would give him room to develop a long-term foundation.

“I felt like I was able to stand up and get better in this situation,” Diabat, 20, told the Detroit News in May. “I didn’t want to just go there and end up in the league for three years and then Just left. I’m trying to get something structurally solid that will help me grow as a man and as a basketball player.

“I would say going into a team, I feel like my role is going to be a dynamic guy,” added Diabate, who became the third Michigan player in the past 10 years to be drafted in the second round, joining the Saiyan with Liver, Ignas Brazdeikis and Glenn Robinson.

“Playing defense, rebounding, running on the court. Just moving and communicating on the court, just being someone who gives energy every time.”

The Clippers’ executives squatted at the Honey Training Center at Thursday’s NBA draft with just one pick as their loss to New Orleans not only ended their season, but also sent their lottery pick. To Oklahoma City — the terms of a blockbuster 2019 deal they acquired All-Star Paul George, which helped lure All-Star Kawhi Leonard to the signing.

Through their pre-draft evaluation process, the Clippers are keeping mum about the players they’re looking for, despite leaks about some of them — including Diabate, who says he’s been with about 100 players, including the Clippers. 10 teams meet.

Next up: Free agency, which officially kicks off at 3 p.m. on June 30, when the Clippers will have – plus Diabate – 12 players, including Leonard and George, who should miss the final Stay healthy after one or most games of an injured season.

The Clippers have some tools at their disposal, including a $9.7 million and $8.3 million trade exception, a $6.3 million tax middle-class exception, $6.3 million and seven second-round games over the next seven years.

Clippers free agent backup center Isaiah Hartenstein was also selected by Houston with the 43rd overall pick in 2017.

Veteran wing Nicolas Batum is expected to turn down his $3.3 million player option, but he has given all indications that he wants to return to the team. The Clippers have Batum’s early bird rights because he’s already served them for two years, which means he’ll be able to get a raise by signing a new contract worth up to $10.9 million for at least two years and in the first Two years without option years.

The Clippers will also decide whether to exercise their $7.5 million center Ivica Zubac’s team option. They have until June 29 to make a decision if they don’t want their “Iron Man” to be an unrestricted free agent. He is also eligible for a four-year, $61 million extension.

June 29 was also the day the Clippers offered two-way guards Jay Scrub (who missed more than 90 games over the past two seasons with a foot injury) and Amir Coffey (started 29 games last season, restricted free agency). Deadline to quote the agent. They have Coffey’s Bird rights, so they don’t have to get caught in a tax mid-level exception on a long-term deal.

The Clippers moved quickly to keep Robert Covington after the season. On May 5, news broke that he and the team had reached a two-year, $24 million extension.

Then there’s the ghost of Kyrie Irving.

The capricious Brooklyn guard has the basketball world speculating about his future with the Nets: Irving has a $36.5 million player option for the 2022-23 season, but reports say he and the team are deadlocked in contract talks, and, He has a roster of teams to consider when signing a sign-and-trade.

those teams? Clippers, Lakers, New York Knicks, Miami Heat, Dallas Mavericks and Philadelphia 76ers.

Will another Earthquake domino fall if Irving leaves? There’s also speculation that 12-time All-Star and 2013-14 league MVP Kevin Durant is “monitoring” the situation and “considering future options,” according to The Athletic’s Shams Charania. Can the Clippers participate in these negotiations? ‘This is the season to at least accept that possibility.

There’s more to this story.

US News.

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