Tag:Charlotte Bobcats
Posted on: February 15, 2011 2:06 am
Edited on: February 15, 2011 12:18 pm
 

Game Changer: West bound and down

The Western Conference is loaded with coasting teams, plus Nicolas Batum puts it on Darko Milicic. Posted by Ben Golliver and Matt Moore.

Each game is made up of elements that help formulate the outcome. Monday through Friday, we'll bring you the elements from the previous night's games in our own specialized version of the game recaps. It's not everything that happened, but it's an insight into what led to the results you'll see in the box scores. This is the Game Changer.  

THE BIG ONE: LETDOWNS ABOUND

The Lakers were in a tough spot. The second-to-last game of the Grammy's Road Trip. The fourth game in five nights. The second night of a back-to-back. Kobe Bryant feeling ill. And a game against Charlotte, who the Lakers struggle with anyway. None of these reasons excuse what twas unquestionably the saddest performance of the year for the defending champs. 

It's not the losing, it's the losing without giving up a fight at all. The Bobcats spent much of the second half dunking and dropping uncontested threes on the Lakers. In the fourth quarter, the Lakers actually trotted out a full-court press, which by its nature demands energy, and still failed to execute it with any urgency. It was the ultimate coasting game. Let me put this way: Gerald Henderson scored 18 points. 

But the Lakers weren't alone tonight. No, no. On top of the Nuggets gettting pummeled in Houston,  New Jersey, Minnesota, Detroit, and the Clippers all took steps backwards. Detroit in particular had been playing a better brand of ball recently, but have now lost three straight and seven of their last ten. It's was a meltdown kind of night all around. You can tell a lot of players are simply ready for the All-Star break. 
 

GO-GO-GADGET LINES OF THE NIGHT:

Gerald Wallace20 points, 10 rebounds, 11 assists, one steal on nine of 16 shooting in 32 minutes in a Charlotte Bobcats home win over the Los Angeles Lakers.

Josh Smith:  27 points, 14 rebounds, three assists, three steals on 11 of 17 shooting in 41 minutes in an Atlanta Hawks road win over the Detroit Pistons.

Carlos Delfino: 26 points, nine rebounds, two assists, three steals on 9 of 15 shooting in 41 minutes in a Milwaukee Bucks home win over the Los Angeles Clippers.

DON'T MISS:


HIGHLIGHT REEL:


Portland Trail Blazers forward Nicolas Batum throws down a vicious dunk over Minnesota Timberwolves center Darko Milicic. Stick around for all the replays. The last one is pretty unreal.



WHIMSY:
Los Angeles Lakers big man Pau Gasol freaks out the moment before a giant, orange asteroid falls on his head. 
pau-gasol

FINAL THOUGHT:

Portland has now won 5 straight. Marcus Camby and Brandon Roy return soon. If they don't blow it up in a trade gorging, this team is putting together something downright dramatic. 
Posted on: February 14, 2011 4:32 pm
Edited on: February 14, 2011 5:43 pm
 

How many points could Michael Jordan score today?

Charlotte Bobcats coach Paul Silas says that Bobcats owner Michael Jordan could score "15 to 20 points a game." Posted by Ben Golliver. michael-jordan-owner

Michael Jordan is 47 years old and hasn't played professional basketball since the 2002-2003 season. In those eight years away from the game, Jordan has been an executive for multiple teams and recently became owner of the Charlotte Bobcats.

In perhaps his biggest move as owner, Jordan parted ways with head coach Larry Brown and installed Paul Silas in his place. In return, Silas has taken to the radio airwaves to extoll Jordan's still considerable basketball talents. In an interview with ESPN Radio 1000 in Chicago, transcribed by SportsRadioInterviews.com, Silas confirmed that Jordan has been working out with the Bobcats players and says that the Hall of Famer could still be an impact player in the NBA.
“Yeah, he comes and works out with the guys. We make him shoot before practice and he’s in the shooting lines … and he’s doing the drills with them and getting up and down the court. It’s exciting to watch him. He still has it, can shoot that thing still. Not as athletic as he once was, of course, but who is. … He’s been a huge help.”
“If he got in shape, he could probably average 15 to 20 points a game, no question. He still has the shot. If he got in shape he could probably average 20 because he can get the shot off, he can make them and he really has an uncanny knowledge of the game.”
For reference, only 21 players in the NBA currently average 20 points per game and only 66 average at least 15 points per game. Also, to be clear, if Jordan returned to play today, he would be the oldest player to ever play in the NBA. Ever. (Again for emphasis.) He would also be nearly a decade older than the current oldest active player, Boston Celtics center Shaquille O'Neal.

I'll be the first to confess that I'm a huge, huge, huge MJ honk. Greatest Of All Time. There's no debate now and there will never be a debate. With that said, unlike Silas, MJ doesn't cut my checks. 

What Silas is saying here is polite and wishful hero-making, but it's not accurate. Essentially, he's arguing that MJ could be an NBA team's No. 1 or No. 2 scorer right now against many players who are less than half of his age. That has to be impossible. No coach would turn the keys over to Jordan. (Not even Silas.) No matter how much Jordan is still revered, there's no way his hypothetical teammates would let him get that many shots if this actually played out. 

In a reasonable best case scenario, the MJ of today would be much like the Tracy McGrady of today: slowed by limited mobility and limited spring but able to be somewhat effective for a losing team in a limited role. Sure, MJ might have more tricks and better shot selection than McGrady, but nothing would be coming easy to him (no open floor transition buckets, less trips to the foul line where he made a killing, etc.). Running things through Jordan is theoretically possible, but it couldn't be a winning, sustainable strategy.

In MJ's last season he shot 44% from the field; McGrady is currently shooting 44.8% from the field. Because he's only playing 23.1 minutes per game, McGrady is currently averaging 8.1 points per game. Even if we take the mental leap that Jordan can keep up for, say, 35 minutes a night, he would still need to improve his shooting efficiency considerably to reach 15 points a game. The odds that Jordan is a better shooter now than he was seven years ago? Not very good. The odds that his body could sustain 35 minutes a night 82 times a season? Even worse.

Here's the rub: We still have to stop and think about whether Jordan could do these things. We're still not at the point - nearly a decade later - where claims such as these are instantly dismissed. Indeed, if I were a GM and you gave me the choice between Jordan and McGrady right now, I'd at least work out Jordan before I made the decision. I'd see if I could arrange a litttle one-on-one. Wouldn't you?

Put it this way: If Silas had simply said Jordan could score 8-10 points per game off the bench, would anyone raise an eyebrow?

Update: Check BusinessInsider.com for a detailed, nuanced comarpsion between Jordan and McGrady.
Posted on: February 14, 2011 2:46 pm
 

Kobe misses shootaround with "aches and chills"

Kobe Bryant misses shootaruond with "aches and chills" and is a game-time decision against Bobcats
Posted by Matt Moore

Kobe Bryant missed shootaround Monday with "aches and chills" according to Lakers.com: 

Kobe Bryant missed his team’s Monday morning shootaround in Charlotte with “aches” and “chills,” according to the Lakers’ PR staff, and will be a game-time decision for a 4 p.m. Pacific tip against the Bobcats. 
Phil Jackson said he’ll just have to wait and see how Bryant feels in advance of the game before determining his status. Of course, since he is the same Kobe Bryant who generally plays through everything, many of his teammates expect him to play.
via Bryant Under the Weather in Charlotte « Lakers Blog.

It's yet another piece of rough news in regards to the Lakers facing the Bobcats. the Lakers are 2-4 since 2007-2008 against the 'Cats. In those six games, Bryant has averaged 25 points per game, but has shot just 40%, including a 2-12-shooting, 5-points performance last February that actually netted a win for the Lakers. So maybe Byrant missing the game isn't the absolute worst thing that could happen.

Then again, Bryant will typically play through anything, and trying to keep him off the floor is something that requires a crowbar and several security personnel.  The possibility for a "Flu Game" is what the media will be looking for, even though in general, no one plays well when they feel sick. Because they feel sick. That's what makes Jordan's "Flu Game" so legendary.

The Lakers could use a win tonight, though, after dropping yesterday's game to Orlando. The four game road streak had everyone feeling better about L.A. A two-game downturn would dampen that enthusiasm somewhat, even with the "just missed shots" feel of the Orlando loss and this one possibly without Bryant. The good news is they play Cleveland to end the trip, so that's pretty much an assured win. 
Posted on: February 8, 2011 10:46 pm
Edited on: February 8, 2011 10:49 pm
 

Najera: Kevin Garnett hits like a grandmother

Boston Celtics power forward Kevin Garnett mixed it up again and, this time, his opponent took exception. Posted by Ben Golliver. kevin-garnett

On Monday, I did the unusual: I applauded Los Angeles Lakers coach Phil Jackson for flapping his gums, as he called out Boston Celtics power forward Kevin Garnett for his recent shenanigans. I went on to wish that there were more NBA folks willing to stand up to Garnett's tired bullying routine. Last than 24 hours later: we've found two volunteers! A player and a long-time beat writer. 

During Monday night's game between the Celtics and the Charlotte Bobcats, Garnett elbowed veteran Bobcats big man Eduardo Najera in the face. Najera's response, according to the Charlotte Observer, was a little bit of face-to-face smack talk.
Celtics provocateur Kevin Garnett elbowed Bobcats forward Eddie Najera in the face late in this one. They went nose-to-nose. How did Najera respond? "I just told him he hits like my grandma,'' Najera recalled postgame.
In a follow-up piece, Rick Bonnell of the Charlotte Observer blasted off on Garnett, applauding Najera for standing up to Garnett and for speaking his mind after the game.
Garnett is a fraud. I’m not saying he isn’t a great player. I’m saying he only picks on people he thinks are weak. Call his bluff, and he backs off in this really wormy way.  Najera, who would be the first to say he’s way beyond his prime, stood up to Garnett’s B.S. Monday. When Garnett elbowed him in the mouth, Najera reminded him he’s no more tough than Najera’s grandma. That’s classic. I’d heard for years that Garnett is a phony, the bully who doesn’t know what to do when he’s called out. Good for Najera.
A grandma and a fraud in one night! This, my friends, is progress, another step in the sorely needed, league-wide Calling Out Kevin Garnett movement. I'm all for it. Maybe after a dozen or two more incidents, commisssioner David Stern will finally deem it necessary to flex his considerable muscle. 
Posted on: February 8, 2011 1:08 am
 

Game Changer: An upsetting night

Posted by Royce Young

Each game is made up of elements that help formulate the outcome. Monday through Friday, we'll bring you the elements from the previous night's games in our own specialized version of the game recaps. It's not everything that happened, but it's an insight into what led to the results you'll see in the box scores. This is the Game Changer.

THE BIG ONE: BLAZERS TOE THE LINE

You didn't think LaMarcus Aldridge was an All-Star? Well how about now?

Aldridge went for 42 against on of the league's best defensive teams as the Blazers topped the Bulls 109-103 in yet another big win for Portland. These Blazers just won't go away. With Brandon Roy coming back soon and a big momentum win over Chicago, it's becoming more and more clear that we're not finished hearing from Portland.

While Aldridge was obviously incredible, this game was maybe more about how Andre Miller controlled everything. He scored 27 points and dished 11 assists and really had the team in good offensive sets and rhythm the entire second half. Typically the Bulls lock down in the fourth quarter, but Portland exploded for 34 points and a lot of that went directly through Miller. Aldridge was big in the period but again, Miller had a big hand in getting him those looks.

The Bulls got 37 from Derrick Rose but in the key moments of the fourth, Rose wasn't able to break lose and his teammates didn't provide a boost. Chicago scored enough to win as 103 typically gets it done for them, but they just couldn't get stops. They outrebounded Portland 41-31, made nine more baskets and scored six more points on 3s.

But the Blazers went 37-40 from the free throw line compared to Chicago's 11-18. Right there, is where this game was won. Aldridge and Miller went a combined 25-27 from the line, Rudy Fernandez 8-9 and Nicolas Batum 4-4. Other than Rose, nobody for the Bulls really got to the stripe. The Blazers attacked, while Chicago settled.

The Blazers need every win they can get, but with a little help on the way, beating the Bulls makes for some good feelings heading into the All-Star break. Portland looks to be in the playoff discussion all the way through and Monday's win showed that there's no reason they won't be.

SNEAKY WOLVES

You hear it all the time, but it's true: No matter who you're playing, there aren't any easy nights in the NBA. And the Hornets were the latest example of that.

Playing at home against the lowly Wolves, a team that had won only two road games coming in, New Orleans looked to roll over Minnesota. Except the Wolves came out firing, scoring 37 in the second quarter en route to hitting 11 3s on the night and beating NOLA 104-92.

Other than the two lines -- the free throw and 3-point ones -- this game was even. New Orleans made 35 baskets to Minnesota's 34. The Wolves had 44 rebounds, the Hornets 43. Turnovers were almost even.

But the Wolves separated because they scored 15 more points from 3 and went 25-25 from the free throw line. Between those two places, Minnesota picked up an extra 24 points on the Hornets. It showed late in the fourth too as Minnesota stretched out to an 18-point lead before Chris Paul tried to bring his team back by forcing a few turnovers and getting a couple good looks for Hornet shooters.

It wasn't enough though as if only for a night, the Wolves looked like the playoff team in New Orleans. Jonny Flynn looked as good as he has this season after coming back from hip surgery with 13 points and six assists, Kevin Love was Kevin Love (27 points, 17 rebounds) and the Minnesota bench poured in 47 points. The defense was there, they selectively ran instead of recklessly doing it and definitely played their best game of the season.

Is it something to build off of? Probably not, because I think it was more of a product that the Hornets weren't prepared, but the Wolves have some talent on the roster. And they showed that they're capable on any given night you don't take them seriously.

BOSTON SLIPS TO BOB'S FORMER CATS

What did I just say about any given night in the NBA? Well, apply it here too.

The Bobcats bit the Celtics 94-89 behind a big performance from unlikely hero Shaun Livingson who had 18 points on 7-10 shooting off the bench. It was the kind of game you almost always see Boston win. A tough, defensive game where every point came at a premium. But the Cats did it all a little better in the end, hitting a number of tough, contested shots while forcing Boston into tough looks on the other end.

At the half, it looked like Charlotte would have a serious uphill climb in order to win. They led 51-50, but Stephen Jackson was tossed because he picked up back-to-back technicals. Without Jackson, things looked to be difficult for Charlotte. One of their top offensive options was gone. They needed someone to step up. And that's where Livingston came in.

He was a huge part of the offense in the fourth quarter rally where Charlotte outscored the Celtics 29-20. He moved the ball, hit jumpers and freed up others with dribble penetration.

A late questionable call on Livingston gave the Celtics life as Paul Pierce went to the line for three, making two and cutting the lead to 92-89 with three seconds left. And despite the bad foul, Livingston swore he wasn't trying to throw the game.



(Ray Allen hit two 3-pointers, putting him one shy of Reggie Miller's record. In case you were wondering.)

The Celtics aren't going to win every night, but this was pretty unexpected, especially with Jackson being absent the last 24 minutes.

CAVS BEIN' CAVS

Coming in, it didn't look there was any question as to if the Cavaliers would drop their 25th straight. They were playing in Dallas against the hit Mavericks.

But there they were, right in the game.

Cleveland got it down to three and had possession with a minute left twice. But they almost looked panicked. Antwan Jamison hurried a 3-pointer and then J.J. Hickson ran over Jason Kidd for a charge. The Cavs went into a frantic mode, hurrying everything trying to tie the game.

Jason Terry knocked down a jumper, but the Cavs responded, cutting it to 99-96. The Cavs got a stop with 15 seconds left and Anthony Parker had a decent pull-up look from 3 to tie. The ball just bounced off the rim but Jamison tapped the ball out.

But naturally, the Cavs didn't even get another tying attempt up before the buzzer sounds. It was so, so Cavs.

They battled though, going on a 7-0 run to even have a chance. But they finished the game like a team that just doesn't know how to win. This is the official record of 25 losses in a row and wouldn't you know it, they were so, so close to preventing that.

GO-GO-GADGET LINES

Carmelo Anthony gets the gold star of the night as he dropped 50 points on 16-24 shooting while also grabbing 11 rebounds.

LaMarcus Aldridge exploded for 42 against the Bulls.

Kevin Martin went for 37 against Denver.

Gerald Wallace went for 19 points and 16 rebounds.

Rajon Rondo notched another double-double with 10 points and 14 assists.

Kevin Love with another typical night -- 27 points, 17 rebounds and 14-14 from the line.

PARTING THOUGHT

I don't know who's harder to figure out, the Nuggets or the Rockets. Denver lost to Houston at home 108-103 despite 50 from Melo. The Rockets just don't seem to go away and the Nuggets just continue to lose puzzling games. In Denver's defense though, Nene missed the game and Chauncey Billups exited early with an injury. Still though, dropping games at home versus sub-.500 teams doesn't happen often in Denver.
Posted on: January 21, 2011 11:47 am
Edited on: January 21, 2011 12:17 pm
 

The Game Changer: Portland keeps fighting

Posted by Royce Young

Each game is made up of elements which help formulate the outcome. Monday through Friday, we'll bring you the elements from the night before's games in our own specialized version of the game recaps. It's not everything that happened, but it's an insight into what lead to the results you'll see in the box scores. This is the Game Changer.  

THE BIG ONE: CLIPS LEAVE CALIFORNIA, LOSE

The Los Angeles Clippers have been playing pretty well lately. So well in fact that people have actually been talking about the potential of them making a run to the playoffs. This year. Myself included. When you look at that roster and how good they are capable of playing and who they've beat, it seems completely possible.

But all of this has come at home, or at least near home. That's the thing about mediocre and bad teams. They can win at home. Look at the Wizards. They're 12-8 at home. But 0-20 on the road. The Clippers are in that same territory (13-13 home, 3-13 road). These games they've won that's got everyone's heart pumping have come at Staples. But now they're on the road for 11 straight and it started in Portland Thursday.

And we learned two things:

1) The Clippers aren't actually there and 2) but they aren't that far off. The Blazers are a very good team at home and the Clippers are a young team that really doesn't know how to win away from Staples. Los Angeles hung tough, battling back every time Portland pushed a lead into double-digits. Whether it was a big shot from Eric Gordon or a big putback by Blake Griffin, the Clips hung tough. That's the first step in winning against good teams on the road -- at least be in the game for the entire 48 minutes. And the Clippers are getting there.

But Portland showed why its still a good team, despite all the injuries. They have savvy veterans and it was displayed extremely well at the end of each quarter. The Clippers would spend an entire quarter coming back, but the Blazers would rip off a 15-4 or 12-3 run to close the period, putting L.A. back in a hole. Again, young team against a veteran team at home.

Two more points to make:

Blake Griffin is the Clippers best player. We know that. But Eric Gordon isn't far behind at all. Thirty-five points and seven 3s against Portland.

LaMarcus Aldridge might not make the All-Star Game, but he tried to state his case Thursday. He finished with 28 on 13-20 shooting against Griffin and held the Clipper stud to 6-16 shooting.

Four in a row for Portland. The hits keep coming with Marcus Camby being out for a few weeks, but Nate McMillan keeps them ticking.

GO-GO-GADGET LINES

Eric Gordon had 35 points that included a 7-11 effort from 3.

Derrick Rose had 26 points nine assists and seven assists. He shot just 9-28 from the field but scored 14 of his 26 in the fourth quarter.

Thaddeus Young had 21 points on 9-14 shooting plus six rebounds off the bench for Philly in a loss to Charlotte.

D.J. Augustin put up 31 and dished out eight assists in the Bobcats win over the 76ers.

Blake Griffin
had a typical night with 20 points and 18 boards but his Clippers came up short in Portland.

LaMarcus Aldridge finished with 28 against Griffin, hitting 13-20 from the field.

DIRK IS STILL HURTING AND SO ARE THE MAVS

The Mavericks and Bulls are both teams that have been battling injuries. It's just one team has been battling a little bit better.

The Bulls took down the Mavs 82-77 in a defensive struggle and did it without Carlos Boozer who missed a third straight game with a sprained ankle. And of course they're missing Joakim Noah because of thumb surgery.

Dallas on the other hand is without Caron Butler who is recovering from knee surgery and has Dirk Nowitzki back, but Dirk clearly isn't right. Nowitzki was just 6-16 from the field, grabbed only two rebounds and was visibly limping all over the floor. He'd stop on every other possession and adjust the wrap on his right knee, or stretch out his leg. He's fighting through this thing because his team is kind of in a situation it needs him, but Dirk isn't Dirk right now.

On the other hand, what helps the Bulls press through the injuries more so than the Mavs is that Chicago's best player isn't playing without any problems. Derrick Rose was again fairly terrific, dropping 26 points while dishing out nine assists and grabbing seven rebounds.

Nevermind that Rose was just 9-28 from the floor. He may have taken more shots than he scored points but he hit big ones late and was a big reason his team won. Hey, when Kobe does it we all rave about what a closer he is. So cut Rose some slack.

Read the rest of how the Bulls powered past the hurting Mavs here.

WHAT DOES 17-24 GET YOU?

How about seventh place in the East?

When you're a team like the Bobcats, you take wins however you can get them. With news coming that Tyrus Thomas will be out for an extended period of time because of a torn meniscus, Charlotte was left short-handed against the 76ers.

So how do you win? Unlikely characters step up. D.J. Augustin looked like a combination of Chris Paul and Deron Williams in the first half, scoring a flurry of points. And to finish, it was Gerald Wallace who hit three clutch shots down the stretch as Charlotte topped Philadelphia 100-97.

The Bobcats aren't necessarily a seventh place team, but that's where they sit now. Under new coach Paul Silas they are 8-5 and more importantly, the team's young players are showing development. Augustin is playing the best basketball of his career and Henderson finally stepped up in a big way offensively. It could be short lived as Charlotte has only 13 healthy players on the roster, but for now, live it up in seventh.

LUCK OR JUST GOOD?

Rudy Fernandez hit a wild hook shot against the Clippers and said after the game, "It's a Euro thing. You wouldn't understand." You're right Rudy. I don't understand.


Posted on: January 20, 2011 8:59 pm
Edited on: January 20, 2011 10:03 pm
 

Tyrus Thomas to have surgery, out up to 8 weeks

Posted by Royce Young

Just when things started to turn for the Bobcats and more specifically, Tyrus Thomas, something bad happened.

Thomas will be sidelined up to eight weeks after MRI revealed a tear of the lateral meniscus tonight, the team announced.

(An aside: How many players are going to tear a meniscus this season? Is it just me or is Thomas like the 50th guy to do it?)

Since Paul Silas took over for Larry Brown, not only has the team been playing better, but Thomas has been seeing more consistent playing time. Somehow, I feel the two are connected. After averaging right at 20 minutes per game the first two months of the season, Thomas has averaged 25.4 in January with Silas at the helm.

As a result, he's contributed heavily to Charlotte's 5-4 start to the month, which has put the Bobcats back in the Eastern playoff discussion and potentially Thomas into the Sixth Man of the Year talk. He was finally being freed.

Except now, he's out for possibly two months. How cruel things can be.

What does this mean for Charlotte though? Well, more Boris Diaw and more Derrick Brown. The Bobcats might even experiment a little with Gerald Wallace at the 4 and move Dominic McGuire to small forward. Or even Stephen Jackson to the 3 and Gerald Henderson in at shooting guard.

They have a few options, but for a team that's already paper thin inside, losing Thomas for an extended stretch is really a killer.

The other option is for Charlotte to just blow it all up. There have been talks about the Bobcats shopping Stephen Jackson and Wallace for young assets and picks and maybe this is the nail in the coffin for Michael Jordan to go ahead and do it. The team has legit playoff hopes (they're actually in seventh at 17-24 after beating Philly Thursday) but without Thomas for two months, it becomes a bit of an uphill climb.

I mean, we're talking about a team that starts Kwame Brown at center and has Nazr Mohammed backing him up. The other backup, DeSagana Diop is out for the season with an achilles injury. So the Bobcats aren't deep inside.

If Charlotte had any visions of making a run at the eight-seed in the East, those hopes took a major hit with this injury to Thomas. It can be overcame, but some players are really going to have to step up.
Otherwise, maybe it's time to set dynamite to the roster.
Posted on: January 19, 2011 11:33 am
 

Mavs are exploring options at small forward

Posted by Royce Young

The Mavericks are just 2-9 since Caron Butler went down with a season-ending injury. They've fallen from the bell of the West, to a team with question marks all over the place.

So it's obvious that the Mavs would be interested in making a deal before the deadline to get back on track. And while they're looking, a report from ESPN Dallas says nothing is "imminent."

However, the Mavericks are still shopping, even if they aren't ready to buy. ESPN Dallas reports that the Mavs have interest in dealing with Charlotte, but not for Gerald Wallace. With Wallace's big contract still holding two more seasons, the Mavs are more interested in the versatile playmaking abiltiy of Stephen Jackson. The Bobcats are probably a five-game losing streak away from blowing things up, but with them playing better and after a big win over Chicago, Charlotte might be looking to hang on for a little while.

Jackson isn't the perfect fit though, as he has two years and almost $20 million left too. Plus, he's 33 years old. But he'd be easier to pry away from the Bobcats than Wallace and Dallas isn't looking to give up a whole lot right now.

Another player the Mavs reportedly have their eyes on is O.J. Mayo. However, Mayo is said to be off limits according to GM Chris Wallace (though that's probably not true). But what that means is that the Grizzlies probably want a lot more for Mayo than anyone would be willing to give up.

Finally, the Mavs would be willing to take on Al Harrington's four-year, $20.3 million contract if that meant they were getting Carmelo Anthony for the next few months, the report says. And if not Anthony, the Mavs would settle for Nene. But this scenario looks pretty unlikely.

Dallas is probably going to have its hand forced at some point to make a move. Caron Butler says he'll be back for the playoffs, but that's no guarantee. And with the way team is struggling, something might need to be done soon in order to keep pace atop the West. The Mavs know their window won't be open for long and Mark Cuban has never been shy about making a move for the now. So I would expect Dallas to be players in something by the trade deadline.
 
 
 
 
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