Category Archives: NBA Draft

Onuaku’s perfect night lifts cruising Charge

CANTON, Ohio – Forward Arinze Onuaku erupted for 29 points on 11-of-11 shooting, and guard Robert Hite made his season debut with 13 points, and the Canton Charge cruised to a 105-96 win over the visiting Erie BayHawks in NBA D-League action Saturday night.

The Charge (7-1) also received 11 points from former Cleveland State guard Shane Edwards.

Scott Suggs paced the BayHawks (0-6) with 22 points and rookie C.J. Leslie added 14 points and five rebounds.

Canton led 60-41 at halftime and 83-64 at the end of the third quarter.

The teams meet again tonight at the Canton Memorial Civic Center. Tip-off is scheduled for 7.

Cavs G/F Carrick Felix to miss game at Orlando

INDEPENDENCE, Ohio – Cavaliers guard/forward Carrick Felix did not travel with the team Thursday to Orlando because of left knee soreness. The Cavs play at the Magic on Friday (7 p.m., FOX Sports Ohio).  Felix is not expected to join the Cavs in time for Saturday’s game at Miami.

He will remain in Cleveland for additional examination and treatment at Cleveland Clinic Sports Health.

The 2013 second-round pick is averaging 1.3 points for the Cavs and 9.3 points and 5.3 rebounds for the Canton Charge.

Small-Time Basketball Report: Elliott Williams stepping up for Sixers

Note: The Small-Time Basketball Report is Sam Amico’s regular feature covering the NBA, the NBA D-League and pro basketball overseas.

Former Trail Blazers first-round draft pick Elliott Williams is off to a solid start with the 76ers.

Williams, a 6-foot-5 guard, is only averaging 2.9 points and 1.4 rebounds in 9.5 minutes, but has offered underrated intangibles that don’t show up on a stat line. The Sixers signed Williams (along with rookie guard Lorenzo Brown) on Nov. 20, when they waived center Kwame Brown, a former No. 1 overall pick, and guard Darius Morris.

Williams was selected with the No. 22 pick in 2010 but appeared in just 24 games with the Blazers after suffering an array of injuries. They included multiple knee surgeries and a ruptured Achilles tendon.

He was not re-signed by the Blazers over the summer — although he did attend training camp with the Cavaliers. Williams appeared in six of the Cavs’ eight preseason games, and was waived before the regular season started.

He has appeared in nine games for the Sixers.

• Former Akron center Zeke Marshall was obtained by the D-League’s Maine Red Claws in a three-team trade with the Reno Bighorns and Santa Cruz Warriors. Marshall, a 7-foot center, was not drafted by an NBA team after his senior season this past summer. Nor has he played for a D-League team. He most recently played with Yulon Luxgen in the Taiwan league, compiling averages of 12.7 points and 4.0 rebounds.

• Former Cavs forward Jamario Moon is averaging 10.6 points and 6.6 rebounds as a member of the Los Angeles D-Fenders of the D-League. Moon, 33, has started four the D-Fenders’ first five games.

• The D-Fenders also obtained the rights to ex-Cavs guard Manny Harris from the Canton Charge for a 2014 first-round D-League draft selection Harris last played for the Charge in 2011-12.

• Speaking of the Charge, second-year forward Kevin Jones (another ex-Cav) has caught the eye of NBA scouts with his start to the season. When asked Wednesday about the odds of a call-up, Jones says he feels “like I have a pretty good shot.”

• Former Lakers and Cavs forward Luke Walton discussed his role with the D-Fenders on podcast on Ridiculous Upside, a website devoted to D-League coverage. Listen to it or read more here.

• Ex-Cleveland State forward J’Nathan Bullock has signed to play professionally in Finland.

• Also, former Youngstown State forward Damian Eargle has signed with the Saint John Mill Rats of NBL Canada. Eargle was named Horizon League Defensive Player of the Year last season.

Twitter: @SamAmicoFSO

Charge fall for first time this season

Arinze Onuaku recorded the 21st double-double of his career with 21 points and 11 rebounds, but it wasn’t enough for the Canton Charge, who lost their first game of the season, 121-112, to the host Delaware 87ers on Sunday.

Onuaka, a 6-foot-9 forward/center, connected on eight of 14 shots.

Former Cavaliers forward Kevin Jones notched 15 points for the Charge (5-1), and swingman Carrick Felix and center Henry Sims tacked on 14 and 13, respectively. Felix and Sims are on assignment from the Cavs.

The Sevens (4-2) received a game-high 23 points from Thanasis Antetokounmpo. Point guard Kendall Marshall, a former NBA lottery pick, added 19 points, seven rebounds and five assists.

Canton returns to action Wednesday at home vs. the Tulsa 66ers. Tip-off is schedule for 7 p.m.

Celtics’ Sullinger on tanking: ‘Y’all can kiss out butts’

After trading Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce to the Nets, and losing coach Doc Rivers to the Clippers, the Celtics were supposed to stink.

They still might — although they’ve been OK so far (7-12 heading into Tuesday’s game vs. the Bucks).

Either way, second-year Celtics forward Jared Sullinger is not about to lose on purpose. In the NBA, this is what fans and media refer to as “tanking.” But players and coaches aren’t into it all, and Sullinger has made that perfectly clear.

“I don’t know why people keep talking about tanking,” said the former Ohio State star. “We have competitors out here. We’re really not like that.”

The 2014 draft class is among the most highly anticipated in a decade with names like Kansas forward Andrew Wiggins, Duke forward Jabari Parker and Kentucky big man Julius Randle.

Any team could certainly use any of those guys, the Celtics among them.

But for now, Sullinger and the Celtics are content aiming for the playoffs.

“We just want to win and show everybody that y’all can kiss our butts about the tanking stuff,” he said.

Sullinger is starting at power forward for first-year coach Brad Stevens and averaging 13.3 points and 7.4 rebounds. He is coming off a 21-point, 14-rebound performance vs. the Bucks.

Charge waive center Longar

CANTON, Ohio – The Canton Charge have waived center Longar Longar, team officials announced Thursday.

The roster now stands at 15 and must be down to 10 by Nov. 21.

The Charge are the official NBA D-League affiliate of the Cavaliers and open the season Nov. 22 at Erie. Their home-opener takes place the following night against expansion Delaware. They also play an exhibition game Saturday at Fort Wayne.

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Canton’s McCollum undergoes successful surgery

Former Canton GlenOak High School standout and current Trail Blazers guard C.J. McCollum underwent successful surgery on his broken right foot in Charlotte, N.C., team officials announced Tuesday.

McCollum’s status will be updated in six weeks.

The 6-foot-3 guard out of Lehigh was selected with the No. 10 overall pick in the draft. He missed most of his senior season with the same injury to his right foot.

He re-injured the foot on the second day of his first NBA training camp.

Ex-Buckeyes G/F Lighty waived by Hawks

Former Ohio State swingman David Lighty was among three players waived by the Atlanta Hawks on Monday, team officials said.

The Hawks also waived nine-year NBA veteran Damien Wilkins and undrafted rookie Adonis Thomas, bringing their roster to 17.

All three players were training camp invitees.

Lighty is 6-foot-5 and played at Ohio State from 2006-11. He went undrafted following his college career and has played professionally in Italy and France.

“For me, to embrace the opportunity, embrace everything and just be me,” Lighty told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution of his Hawks tryout. “Go with it and do the best I can. Find my way to leave an impact on a game every time I’m in there.”

Thomas, a 6-7 forward, left Memphis after his sophomore season but did not get drafted.

“I just figured I had total confidence in what I was doing,” Thomas told the Journal-Constitution. “I felt as though I was ready. I felt as though I was an NBA player and I was ready to leave. I didn’t get drafted unfortunately but you can’t dwell on that.”

Wilkins, 6-6, has spent nine years in the NBA with five different teams.

Former GlenOak standout McCollum breaks foot again

Bad breaks continue to surround Trail Blazers rookie guard C.J. McCollum. Actually, McCollum isn’t entirely unlucky — he was, after all, selected by the Blazers with the No. 10 overall pick in the NBA Draft.

But when he will play is anyone’s guess.

McCollum, a 6-foot-3 guard out of Lehigh, broke his left foot in practice Saturday, and the injury will require surgery.

The surgery has not yet been scheduled and the Blazers say McCollum’s status won’t be updated until after it takes place.

McCollum played high school ball at Canton (Ohio) GlenOak alongside Grizzlies center Kosta Koufos. McCollum then went on to Lehigh, leading the Explorers to the NCAA tournament (which included a win over Duke) during his junior season.

But he missed almost all of his senior year with the same injury he suffered over the weekend – a fractured fifth metatarsal bone in his left foot.

McCollum is expected to be a key player in a Blazers backcourt that also includes reigning Rookie of the Year Damian Lillard and former Cavs guard Mo Williams.

Ex-Buckeye Lighty joins Atlanta Hawks for camp

Former Ohio State swingman David Lighty is among those who received a training camp invite from the Atlanta Hawks.

Lighty is 6-foot-5 and played at Ohio State from 2006-11, but went undrafted following his college career.

He played with French club JSF Nanterre last season, averaging 14.5 points and 1.2 steals per game. His professional career began in Italy (2011-12) with Bennet Cantù and Vanoli Cremona.

Lighty played his high school ball at Villa Angela-St. Joseph in Cleveland.

Former Cavaliers general manager Danny Ferry is in his second season as GM of the Hawks. The Hawks are holding training at the University of Georgia through Thursday.