BIRMINGHAM, AL (September 7, 2021) – The Birmingham Squadron have acquired the returning player rights to forward Zylan Cheatham in a trade with the Iowa Wolves, Squadron General Manager Marc Chasanoff announced today. The Squadron will receive Cheatham and Iowa’s 2021 second-round pick in exchange for the returning player rights to guard Tony Carr and Birmingham’s 2021 first and third round picks.
Cheatham (6-8, 200) is entering his third season in the NBA G League after previous stints with the Iowa Wolves (2020-21) and Erie Bayhawks (2019-20). He has played in 49 games (45 starts) and owns a G League career average of 10.7 rebounds per game, the 15th best mark among G League career leaders and second among active players in the G League.
Cheatham spent last season (2020-21) in the G League “bubble” with Iowa and started in all 15 contests, averaging 10.5 points per game along with 8.1 rebounds (second on the team), 2.3 assists, 0.6 steals and 0.5 blocks in 30.7 minutes played. His 97 defensive rebounds last season ranked seventh in the G League.
The 6-8, 200-pound forward originally entered the G League as an undrafted free agent, signing a two-way contract with the Pelicans and Bayhawks, where he spent the 2019-20 season. He appeared in 34 games (30 starts) with the Bayhawks and averaged a double-double with 16.2 points, a team-high 11.8 rebounds (seventh most in the G League), 2.7 assists, 0.9 steals and 0.7 blocks in 32.6 minutes. His 402 total rebounds in his rookie season also ranked third in the G League. He also played four games with the Pelicans and notched 12 points (.667 FG%), nine rebounds, three assists, one steal and one block.
The Phoenix, Arizona native came to the G League after three seasons in the college ranks with San Diego State (2016-18) and Arizona State (2018-19). As a junior at Arizona State, Cheatham led the Pac-12 in rebounds and finished the season as one of two players in the nation to average a double-double and three assists per game.