Posted on: December 18, 2008 10:47 am
 

Marion trade rumor shown on Pat Riley's TV

It was just another day in Shawn Marion's trade rumor-driven world. That is, until he attended the team Christmas party at Pat Riley's house, where the latest trade rumor was televised on the news scroll of a popular, widely viewed entertainment and sports programming network.

Though a person with direct knowledge of the situation said Miami and Cleveland haven't held any trade discussions in months, reports of a possible deal sending Marion to Cleveland for Wally Szczerbiak and Anderson Varejao were nonetheless the talk of the party at Riley's house Tuesday night.

 "What am I going to do? I'm going to sit there and panic every time somebody says something?" said Marion, whose $17.8 million expiring contract -- and 12.4-point scoring average -- will have him front-and-center of trade talk between now and the Feb. 19 deadline.

 

Posted on: December 18, 2008 10:32 am
 

Felton to Warriors?

According to the Charlotte Observer, the Warriors are interested in trading for Charlotte point guard Ray Felton, whose future with the Bobcats has been clouded by the performance of rookie D.J. Augustin.

The scenario makes sense on several levels, and I am checking with sources to determine the likelihood of a deal that would send Felton to Golden State for a package including either Anthony Randolph or Brandan Wright.

The Bobcats opted not to extend Felton's contract last summer after selecting Augustin ninth overall, and Felton could leave as a restricted free agent if Charlotte opts not to match potentially lucrative offer sheets.

Golden State is known to be high on Wright, whom the Bobcats drafted on the Warriors' behalf to complete a draft-day trade sending Jason Richardson to Charlotte. Felton would be a good fit in the Warriors' backcourt because he would free up Monta Ellis, once he returns from an ankle injury sustained in an offseason moped accident, to be a scorer as the shooting guard. Stay tuned.

 

Posted on: December 18, 2008 10:19 am
 

Hill: "If I get traded, I quit"

An NBA coaching source who does not toss trade rumors around carelessly confirmed the legitimacy of an Orlando Sentinel report stating that the Suns and Magic could be partners in a Duke-for-Duke swap involving Grant Hill and J.J. Redick. The deal would make sense, the source said, because "both players want out of their respective teams."

Hill, who played six mostly injury-filled seasons in Orlando before signing with the Suns in 2007, is renovating a permanent home in the Orlando area. But the 36-year-old Hill dismissed the speculation Wednesday, saying, "If I get traded, I quit." Hill is a free agent after the season.

 

Posted on: December 18, 2008 10:09 am
 

Suns have "zero" interest in Marbury

While Stephon Marbury has been given permission to seek a deal with a new team, no new talks are scheduled between the Knicks and Marbury's representative from the NBA Players Association to extricate him from New York.

According to a person with close ties to Marbury, the banished point guard is seeking to sign with a "playoff, championship caliber team." The source declined to discuss which teams Marbury is targeting, but didn't shoot down  Boston, Miami, or the Lakers as options. One team Marbury won't be signing with is the Suns. Phoenix contributed $500,000 to Spanish club Tau Ceramica to buy out their second-round pick, Slovenian point guard Goran Dragic, and team president Steve Kerr said Wednesday he has "zero" interest in Marbury. Kerr was in Denver Wednesday night scouting a point-guard matchup between Smush Parker and Eddie Gill in a D-League game, and vice president of basketball operations David Griffin plans to work out 4-6 point guards -- possibly including Damon Stoudamire and Troy Hudson -- on Monday. The Suns have until Wednesday to add a player to reach the NBA roster minimum of 13.

Miami is close to the luxury tax threshold and would need to trim a player to make room for Marbury, even if he signed for the veteran's minimum of $1.2 million. Dwyane Wade likely would have to sign off on adding Marbury, given his substantial baggage. A person familiar with the Celtics' thinking said the team would investigate Marbury when he became available, but the signing would have to come with the approval of the coaching staff and key leaders in the locker room.

Knicks president Donnie Walsh and NBPA attorney Hal Biagas, who is representing Marbury, "check in with each other periodically," but have held no further substantive buyout talks and have none scheduled, the source said.

Posted on: December 17, 2008 12:26 pm
 

Big NBA game in Atlanta? Who knew?

You know something is up when a Hawks game is (almost) sold out.

The Celtics are in Atlanta Wednesday night for their first meeting with the Hawks since they needed Paul Pierce's dramatic fallaway jumper at the buzzer to secure a 103-102 victory on Nov. 12. Boston is riding a 15-game winning streak, but lost all three games in Atlanta during the playoffs last season. The Hawks have won seven straight at home and nine of 10, including a 97-92 victory over Cleveland Saturday night -- snapping the Cavs' 11-game winning streak.

SLAM opens the floor to debate as to whether you can call Celtics-Hawks a rivalry yet. A promo on the Hawks' website has caught the Celtics' attention, with Ray Allen saying, "The building is going to be a playoff atmosphere so we need to go down there with a different mindset."

(Here's the promo, which apparently provided the Celtics with a few laughs. It quoted Kevin Garnett saying, "I wouldn't call it a rivalry," and showed a highlight reel that makes it appear that the Hawks won the first-round series.)

Posted on: December 17, 2008 11:57 am
 

Wednesday Shootaround

* Finally, the Rockets showed how dangerous they can be if everyone is healthy. Yao was unstoppable, Tracy McGrady had his fourth career triple-double, and Ron Artest played a crucial role coming off the bench in a 108-96 victory over Denver.

* Chris Paul tied Alvin Robertson's NBA record for consecutive games with a steal (105) in a 91-84 victory over Memphis.

* Those who took issue with my accolades for Derrick Rose will delight in the fact that D.J. Augustin (29 points, 7 assists) outdueled the Bulls' No. 1 pick (7 points, 6 assists) in the Charlotte Bobcats' 110-101 overtime victory over the Bulls.

* I was standing outside the visiting locker room in Philadelphia last Wednesday night when the 76ers' medical staff, led by team doctor Jack McPhilemy, ventured inside to examine Zydrunas Ilgauskas' foot and X-rays thereof. Little did I know how stunned the doctors were when they viewed the X-rays. Bob Finnan of the News-Herald explains. (Link courtesy of TrueHoop.)

* Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban, facing insider trading charges, is oh-for-December in terms of blog posts. What's up with that? 

* Interesting decision for the Warriors when Monta Ellis comes off the suspended list Friday. Who gets waived or traded to clear a roster spot? Even though Ellis won't be ready to play until sometime in '09, Golden State needs to make room on the roster. Matt Steinmetz makes a solid case that the decision will provide insight into how much GM Chris Mullin's power has diminished. Mullin is believed to want Marcus Williams to stay, but coach -- and perhaps soon-to-be-GM Don Nelson -- wants to keep Rob Kurz. If Kurz stays and Williams goes, you'll have your answer.

* HoopsAddict makes a case for Chauncey Billups as MVP, proposes buying a steak dinner for Mike D'Antoni and Donnie Walsh, and believes Danny Granger deserves more All-Star votes.

 

 

 

Posted on: December 17, 2008 11:36 am
Edited on: December 17, 2008 2:27 pm
 

Grant Hill for J.J. Redick? (UPDATE)

Dime brings us word of a trade rumor floated by the Orlando Sentinel: J.J. Redick from the Magic to the Suns for Grant Hill.

Brian Schmitz cites "impeccable sources" who say Hill is interested in reuniting with his former team, and that Redick wouldn't mind a fresh start in Phoenix. Schmitz is good, so this one is worth checking out. No word on whether Coach K would be thrown in on the Phoenix end in the Duke-for-Duke swap.

Trade rumors are fun, but we try to deal in reality -- trades that are beyond the point of mere inquiries and actually have a chance of happening -- here at the BergerSphere. So if this rumor rises to that level, you'll be the first to know. 

UPDATE: An update from a source familiar with both teams' situations -- a source who doesn't peddle trade rumors irresponsibly -- handicapped this one as "possible. Both want out from their respective teams."

 

Posted on: December 17, 2008 11:24 am
 

Marion believes he will finish season in Miami

From the Miami Herald, Shawn Marion believes that despite the latest round of trade speculation, he'll finish the season in Miami.

The Herald quotes two sources saying that a potential trade sending Marion, on the last year of a contract at $17.2 million, to Cleveland for Wally Szczerbiak and Anderson Varejao, isn't imminent. A person with knowledge of the situation told CBSSports.com Tuesday that Miami and Cleveland haven't engaged in any trade discussions in months.

That said, the deal has the potential to make too much sense for both teams to dismiss the idea that it might resurface. A lot can happen between now and the Feb. 19 trade deadline.

 

 

 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com