Nets sign three training camp invitees, one Brooklynite

Gary Forbes
Gary Forbes with the Toronto Raptors in 2011. (AP)
Gary Forbes with the Toronto Raptors in 2011. (AP)

The Brooklyn Nets have signed D-League guard Jorge Gutierrez and former Memphis Grizzlies forward Chris Johnson, according to Mark Deeks of ShamSports, and Brooklyn’s Gary Forbes, as training camp invitees.

Forbes played high school basketball at Benjamin Banneker Academy in Brooklyn, setting school records for points, rebounds, and blocked shots, winning Newsday’s Player of the Year in Brooklyn as a senior, and was a finalist for the McDonald’s All-American Game. In two full seasons (111 games) in the NBA with the Toronto Raptors, the 6’7″ Forbes averaged 5.8 points and 2.0 rebounds in 13.5 minutes per game, shooting 43.4% from the field and 34.9% from deep. He’s the closest thing to a rotation player between the three players.

Gutierrez most recently played in FIBA Americas, helping Mexico become the first Finalist. Before the summer, Gutierrez played for the D-League Canton Charge as a rookie, averaging 10.5 points, 4.9 rebounds, and 4.7 assists per game. He earned a spot on the D-League All-Defensive First team and the D-League Rookie First Team. The 6’3″ guard from Mexico famously entered the country illegally at the age of 15 to pursue a career in basketball, which seems to have worked out.

Johnson, a 6’6″ forward out of Dayton, played briefly with the Memphis Grizzlies, averaging 3.6 points per game over eight games on two ten-day contracts. That split two stretches Johnson played with the Rio Grande Valley Vipers, averaging 10.6 points and 4.2 rebounds per game in 39 regular season games and starting all five of the team’s playoff games.

Gutierrez and Johnson already have D-League affiliate rights, which trump training camp rights, so the Nets won’t be able to offer either of those two a spot on their D-League affiliate after camp. Only Forbes, who is currently unsigned and without D-League rights, has a shot at making the Springfield Armor if he’s not signed to an NBA contract. As the Nets already have fifteen guaranteed NBA contracts, that’s the most likely scenario: Gutierrez and Johnson will return to their D-League clubs after training camp, and Forbes will likely receive an invite to join the Armor.