Michael Porter Jr. was considered a top-five NBA draft selection before a back injury that required surgery limited him to three games at Missouri in 2017-18.
DENVER — Denver Nuggets rookie forward Michael Porter Jr. has undergone back surgery in Dallas and there is no timetable for his return to the court.
The team said Thursday the procedure of the lumbar spine was performed by Dr. Andrew Dossett at the Carrell Clinic.
Porter, who led Nathan Hale High School of Seattle to the state championship last year, was taken by Denver with the 14th overall pick in the June draft. He was considered a top-five selection before a back injury that required surgery limited him to three games at Missouri in 2017-18.
The 6-foot-10 Porter was hampered by back and hip soreness during predraft workouts. But the Nuggets felt his talent was work the risk, with Nuggets president of basketball operations Tim Connelly saying at the time: “You have to take a swing at guys like that.”
Anthony, traded to Atlanta, likely to be waived
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OKLAHOMA CITY — Carmelo Anthony is done in Oklahoma City.
A person with knowledge of the details told The Associated Press the Thunder is sending Anthony and a 2022 protected first-round pick to Atlanta for Hawks guard Dennis Schroder and Mike Muscala. Anthony will be waived by the Hawks, clearing the way for him to sign as a free agent elsewhere.
ESPN, which first reported the trade, said the Thunder will send Muscala to the Philadelphia 76ers for Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot, and Philadelphia’s Justin Anderson will be sent to Atlanta.
Schroder, a speedy 6-foot-1 guard, averaged a career-high 19.4 points last season for the Hawks in 67 games, all starts.
Anthony’s lone season in Oklahoma City was largely a bust. He averaged 16.2 points and struggled at times in his new role alongside Russell Westbrook and Paul George. The 10-time All-Star posted career lows in scoring average and field-goal percentage, and the Thunder was ousted in the first round of the playoffs by Utah.
Anthony, 34, had been the headliner his entire career — he’s 19th in NBA history with 25,417 points — but he was more of a catch-and-shoot scorer last season instead of the isolation specialist he had always been. His playing time dwindled in the playoffs.
Anthony opted earlier this summer to accept the $28 million he was due next season. That salary will now be paid by Atlanta.
Celtics give Smart $52 million
BOSTON — The Boston Celtics re-signed guard Marcus Smart, bringing him back for four more years after he found the market for a restricted free-agent defensive specialist wasn’t as lucrative as he’d hoped.
A person with knowledge of the agreement told The Associated Press that Smart will be paid $52 million over the next four years. Smart averaged 10.2 points, 4.8 assists and 3.5 rebounds per game last season.
He returned from thumb surgery late in the first round of the playoffs and provided the defensive presence that was instrumental in the Celtics taking the Cavaliers to seven games in the Eastern Conference finals. LeBron James called Smart’s creativity on the court “uncanny” and coach Brad Stevens said Smart was “as tough as they come.”