The Cleveland Cavaliers have signed forward Mamadi Diakite to an Exhibit 9 contract. This is a non-guaranteed deal. Of course, the 25-year-old can get waived at any given point.
Exhibit 9 contracts are for one full season at minimum salary. Since Diakite’s signing does not include an Exhibit 10 clause, this particular NBA contract cannot be converted into a two-way deal.
Therefore, there’s no guarantee that Diakite will play for the Cleveland Charge, the team’s NBA G League affiliate. The Guinean has to make the Cavaliers roster if he wants to play in the league.
— Corey Frazier (@CoachFraz32) September 18, 2022
In 2020, Diakite went undrafted out of Virginia. On November 23, 2020, the wing inked a two-way contract with the Milwaukee Bucks. His two-way contract was later converted into a standard deal on April 21, 2021.
During the 2020-21 season, in 14 appearances, Diakite averaged 3.1 points and 2.4 rebounds per game. He also shot 40% from the field while averaging 10.1 minutes per contest.
On May 16, 2021, in the Bucks’ 118-112 loss against the Chicago Bulls, the forward scored a career-high 13 points in 38 minutes of action. In addition to amassing 7 rebounds and 3 steals, he finished 4-for-11 (36.4%) shooting from the floor.
Cavaliers sign forward Mamadi Diakite to Exhibit 9 contract
When the Wisconsin Herd decided to forfeit the 2020-21 season, Diakite then played for the Lakeland Magic of the NBA G League. While with Lakeland, in 12 appearances, the wing averaged 18.5 points, 10.4 rebounds, 2 assists, and 2.1 blocks per game.
Additionally, he was selected to the NBA G League First Team, NBA G League All-Defensive Team, and NBA G League All-Rookie Team. For one notable observation, Diakite has the talent to play for the Cavaliers next season.
In the G League, the forward finished third in true shooting percentage (65.6%), third in effective field goal percentage (60.2%), and eighth in blocks (25).
Diakite also helped Lakeland defeat the Delaware Blue Coats to win the 2021 NBA G League championship.
However, the Milwaukee Bucks waived him on September 24, 2021. If the Cavaliers like what they see, it will be Diakite’s third NBA team.
Two days later, the Oklahoma City Thunder claimed him off waivers. While Oklahoma City waived him in the following weeks, the forward went on to sign three 10-day contracts with the team in January 2022.
In 13 games played with the Thunder in the 2021-22 season, he averaged 4.3 points and 4.5 rebounds per contest. Plus, he shot 53.2% from the field.
In the Thunder’s 96-93 win over the Portland Trail Blazers on Feb. 4, the wing scored a season-high 12 points in 30 minutes played. He shot 4-for-8 (50%) from the floor.
Mamadi Diakite has one chance to prove himself on the Cavaliers. During training camp, the coming weeks will test a lot of young talents across the league.