Posted on: February 13, 2010 3:11 pm
Edited on: February 13, 2010 8:02 pm
DALLAS -- Jason Kidd likes the trade that would fortify the Mavericks' title hopes, bringing Caron Butler, Brendan Haywood and DeShawn Stevenson from Washington for Josh Howard, Drew Gooden, James Singleton and Quinton Ross. But Kidd, an All-Star point guard, said Saturday it's not all the Mavs need to get back on track.
"It could put us right there with the best, but at the end of the day you've still got to play the games," Kidd said on the practice court during All-Star weekend. "So on paper, it doesn't win you a championship. The big thing for us is we got to turn it around because we haven't been playing well as a team anyway. First off, we got to start winning no matter if there's a trade or not."
Butler, having a horrendous year in Washington, would give the Mavs the scoring threat that Howard was unable to deliver -- assuming the change of scenery will restore Butler to his former All-Star level. But the key to the deal could be Haywood, whose shot-blocking and post defense could help solve the problem that had Dallas limping into the All-Star break.
The Mavs went into the break with five losses in seven games, prompting owner Mark Cuban to declare, "We suck right now." The problem has been defense, particularly on the perimeter. Dallas went into the break having allowed 100 points or more in eight consecutive games. According to adjusted plus/minus guru Wayne Winston -- who for nine years headed the Mavs' quantitative analysis team -- Kidd, Jason Terry and J.J. Barea were the worst culprits. With Haywood protecting the basket, all of them should improve.
Posted on: March 4, 2009 9:31 am
Veteran Joe Smith has agreed to return to Cleveland for the rest of the season, hoping to help LeBron James win a title. Smith's inside presence was sorely needed once Ben Wallace went down with a broken leg last week -- especially considering Boston's addition of Mikki Moore and Orlando's deadline trade for Rafer Alston.
If anyone cares to rank these contenders' trade deadline/waiver deadline moves, have at it. You'd have to start with Alston and go from there, but it's an interesting debate as to which team after Orlando has helped itself the most.
Another interesting debate: Breakin Down the Game makes a reasonable argument for why a rookie should win the most improved player award this season. Look at Russell Westbrook's month-to-month numbers:
* November: 12.2 points; 4.1 assists; 3.3 rebounds
* December: 15.5 points; 5.1 assists; 5.1 rebounds
* January: 16.5 points; 5.5 assists; 4.9 rebounds
* February: 20.4 points 5.9 assists; 6.1 rebounds
Not bad. I'll buy it, D-Miz.
Posted on: February 27, 2009 9:49 am
1) Where do the Cavs turn for inside help down the stretch?
As for question No. 1, you had better believe that Oklahoma City GM Sam Presti will be hearing from Cavs GM Danny Ferry -- if he hasn't already. Presti has a former piece of Cavs property, power forward Joe Smith, who many predicted would be traded or released by now. So far, Presti has held onto Smith and his $4.8 million expiring contract. Smith would have to be bought out and waived by Sunday in order to be eligible for the Cavs' playoff roster.
There's no trading for Smith now, but there are such things as favors in the NBA. If Presti releases Smith, he might find a little IOU from Ferry in his mailbox. Stay tuned.
Another option is Drew Gooden, another former Cav who is expected to be bought out by Sacramento. Gooden just returned from a month-long absence due to a groin injury, but was effective Wednesday night with 12 points and 13 rebounds in 26 minutes against Charlotte.
As for question No. 2, we'll have to wait and see how the Cavs fill the void. But as of now, the answer is a resounding yes.
Posted on: February 18, 2009 5:05 pm
Edited on: February 18, 2009 5:42 pm
The Sacramento Kings have agreed to send center Brad Miller and swingman John Salmons to the Chicago Bulls for Drew Gooden and Andres Nocioni, a person with knowledge of the situation told CBSSports.com.
The deal has yet to go through the league approval process, so other pieces could be involved. But with that basic framework, the Kings pay a hefty price for Gooden's $7.1 million expiring contract. Nocioni is owed $21 million over the next three years, with a fourth year at a team option for $7.5 million.
UPDATE: According to the Sacramento Bee, the Bulls also send Michael Ruffin and Cedric Simmons to the Kings. In a separate deal, the Kings send Ruffin to Portland for Ike Diogu and about $1 million. When the math is done, the trades will save the Kings about $13.5 million next season.
UPDATE: K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune reports that Chicago also is discussing a separate salary dump that would send Kirk Hinrich ($26.5 million due over the next three years) to Minnesota for Jason Collins' expiring contract and noted cap albatross Brian Cardinal, who has $6.75 million coming off the books after 2009-10.
The Mavericks, who are shopping Jerry Stackhouse (only $2 million guaranteed next season) were in the mix for Miller, but the Bulls had the pieces necessary for the Kings to move the two players they wanted to trade in the same deal. The Knicks also were interested in Miller, but had no serious conversations with the Kings on that front.