Tag:Trade Rumors
Posted on: February 1, 2011 1:28 am
Edited on: February 1, 2011 1:29 am
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Lakers GM open to considering a trade

With Lakers underperforming, GM Mitch Kupchak says he "may have to look into a trade."
Posted by Matt Moore

The Lakers are 1-5 against top echelon teams. Phil Jackson couldn't care less. Kobe Bryant is beyond angry. And General Manager Mitch Kupchak? He's talking T-word. Trade. From the Los Angeles Times:

"Yes . . . I may have to look into a trade, but I'm not saying we have "talked to other teams yet, Kupchak said. "We have not been playing up to our level and I dont know why. Maybe its complacency. Im not sure."
via Lakers GM Mitch Kupchak says hes thought about making a trade - latimes.com.


A trade? By the defending champs? Could this be happening? Even with the measured and cautious words being tossed around by Kupchak, that's a pretty stunning development even if the Lakers are simply considering a trade. This is a team that has looked every bit like a Finals contender, unless they've been facing an elite team this year. It's also a team that's notorious for not taking teams seriously, having gone seven games with a Yao-less Rockets squad in 2009, having a terrible second half last year, and letting the Suns push them in the Western Conference Finals using a zone, for crying out loud. You have to think this is just an emotional quote from Kupchak revealing a frustration with the team's play, or at least a Jackson-like motivational tactic.

Even stranger than the idea of the Lakers needing to make a trade is the idea of what trade they would be able to make. Every Laker of consequence with any value, contract or skill-wise, has at least two more years left on their deals. Kobe Bryant and Pau Gasol are obviously not even in this discussion. So what are the next options?
  • Lamar Odom- Trade Status: Obscenely unlikely. Odom is the quintessential heart and soul of this club. He's found a home there and has flourished when his head is plugged in. What's more, he's part of the reason for the Lakers' absurd length advantage. When Odom is on, the Lakers are nearly unstoppable. Moving him would garner the best set of assets, but who could they get for him, with nearly $9 million on the books for next season, even with his 2013 salary non-guaranteed at $8.2 million?
  • Andrew Bynum- Trade Status: Pretty unlikely. Bynum has been involved in trade rumors for years due to his inconsistency, rehab work ethic, and injuries. Yet it was his toughness fighting through the Finals last spring on a torn ligament that helped assure the Lakers a title. He's now considered an invaluable part of the offense, and his improving defense, combined with his willingness to give a hard foul, means he's the backbone of what has been a very soft Lakers interior lately. Combine that with the difficulty of getting teams to invest in someone with his injury history, and the near-$15 million on the books for next year and a team option for over $16 million the next, and it's hard to see a suitor for Bynum that would keep the Lakers in contention.
  • Ron Artest- Trade Status: Difficult: From zero to hero to zero again. Artest struggled all last year trying to learn the Triangle, was terrible at times in the playoffs, then hit the biggest hot of his career to help clinch a title for the Lakers (as well as a tip-in in the Western Conference Finals) and was everyone's hero. This year? Back to the doghouse. If anyone's to be moved, it's probably Artest, but that says more about where Ron's sunk to rather than where his value is at. Getting anything for someone who's been such a pain for so many teams with over $21 million left on his contract after this year is difficult. When it's Ron Artest? Even harder.
  • Luke Walton- Trade Status: Ha-ha-ha-ha: Yes, because I'm sure that what GMs with a valuable commodity are thinking is "Oh, we can get the 28th pick in the draft and Luke Walton with over $11 million left on his contract over the next two years? Who wouldn't do that deal?" Walton's contract is slowly reaching movable status after an ill-advised extension, but he's a long ways away from upgrade-bait. 
  • Steve Blake- Trade Status- Limited: Blake's got three years after this one for a combined roughly $14 million, is a serviceable point guard, and fits easy into a rotation. So he's got some value. But in terms of trying to get a major upgrade, he'd have to be packaged with one of the above candidates in order for it to make any sense. He can act as icing on the cake, but even then, having three years left on his deal may make it a little too sweet for most. 
  • Derek Fisher - Trade Status: Laughable: The Lakers would never give up their most veteran leader who everyone came up to and thanked after winning the last title. Bryant would never stand to lose the guy he's been to the playoffs with the most. Not everyone can run the Triangle point guard position... okay, that's a lie. Pretty much everyone can dribble the ball up, pass it to Kobe Bryant, and then go sit in a corner and often get blown by on defense. But Fisher's hit too many huge shots in Laker history to be forsaken. And no one is looking to pay him another $6.8 million for two more years. 
  • Shannon Brown- Trade Status: Intriguing, if unlikely: Brown failed to fetch any significant offers on the open market this summer, so who's going to trade for him now, even in a career year for him? He's got great upside and has looked like a possible building block, but who doesn't when they're running next to this team? Brown's cheap and his contract is flexible, but he's not going to cash in any huge superstar on the open market. 
  • Matt Barnes- Trade Status: Injured: Barnes is injured for a few more weeks, his contract's too low to matter, and the only teams that would be interested in him are contenders, the sort of teams that would never give up valuable assets to the defending champs. 

So while Kupchak may be looking to try and upgrade his team, Michael Heisley and Chris Wallace aren't walking through that door. Even with the Nuggets being dragged slowly towards the inescapable black hole in the reality that they have to trade Carmelo Anthony, and the Sixers wanting to offload Iguodala to make room for their rebuilding project, or the Suns in near full-on blow-up mode, no one's going to be looking to the Lakers to cash in.  The Lakers are on top, and have spent a lot to get to the top. They're loaded with talent, but it's not talent that garners a lot on the market. 

After all, how do you possibly get great return on trading members of the most talented team in the league? Instead, I think the Lakers will take the Phil Jackson approach. Sit back, relax, coast through the next four months, and flip the switch when it counts. They've done it before. They'll do it again. 
Posted on: January 28, 2011 12:38 pm
Edited on: February 4, 2011 2:32 pm
 

Friday 5 with KB: Who's moving at the deadline?




Posted by Matt Moore

In today's Friday 5 with KB: who's getting moved at the deadline, where's White Chocolate going, and how's Kevin Durant's season going?

1. Guess what, Ken? February's here! Which means it's trade deadline season! Which means you won't get to sleep for a month! Get excited! Okay, give me one guy who if you absolutely had to put money on getting moved before the deadline, you'd put the cash down on. 

Ken Berger (CBSSports.com): With cash on the line, I should take the easy way out and say Anthony Randolph, who's either going to be traded to the Nuggets in a Carmelo Anthony deal or to Minnesota for a first-round pick the Knicks can use to replenish their stockpile after the cap-clearing trade with Houston last season. But that's like stealing candy from a blogger, so I'll be a little more risk-taking and say Joel Przybilla. The Blazers are likely to try to shake things up, and Przybilla's size and expiring contract will be in demand among contenders. Once Marcus Camby comes back from his knee scope, Portland will have the green light to explore how much those contenders will be willing to give up.

2.  Jason Williams released by the Magic this week. Any chance of him winding up in Miami? And if not, where then?

KB: The Heat haven't had any internal discussions of significance about Williams; despite their limitations, Miami seems content with the point-guard platoon of Mario Chalmers and Carlos Arroyo. The latest, as you know, is that the Grizzlies have serious interest -- especially now that O.J. Mayo has been suspended 10 games for using a banned supplement.

3.  Your big feature on Antoine Walker this week showcased the problems with players who squander their money in rather horribly pathetic ways.  Is this an issue of personal responsibility only, or one that either the union or the league will feel compelled to act further upon? There have been classes, resources, advisers, all made available to the players and yet we see things like this. Is it foolish to hope for anything more provided to the players to avoid situations like Walker's?

KB: As you point out, the league and union do try to educate players about the perils of mismanaging their money, trusting it to friends or so-called investment gurus, or simply squandering it on an outlandish lifestyle. As in any walk of life, some players listen and some don't. That is always going to be the case no matter how much education is available. That's why I like this idea, and since the CBA is up, it's the perfect time to implement it. Let's set aside a small percentage of the profit when a team is sold and  put it in the pension fund for retired players. It would be a forced-savings mechanism and a safety net for players who get into financial trouble -- whether it's their own fault or not.

4. O.J. Mayo tests positive for DHEA, which is a borderline substance, but banned nonetheless, with a previous instance of suspension against Rashard Lewis. A bill failed to have DHEA classified as an anabolic steroid, but the considerations of the substance are all over the place. Any impact of this suspension beyond O.J. Mayo's continuing "worst month ever?"

KB: Just another cautionary tale for players to be aware of what they're putting in their bodies. Look around any NBA locker room and you see five-hour energy drinks in multiple lockers and guys chowing down on horribly unhealthy pre- and post-game meals. Then you have Steve Nash, who won't let a single granule of processed sugar pass through his lips. To each his own -- but beware of the consequences.

5. Kevin Durant drops 47 this week on the Timberwolves, days after an 0-5 performance down the stretch in a loss to the Hornets, which was days after a killer fading 3-pointer against the Knicks. What are your thoughts on KD's season, one with heightened expectations but less press than we were expecting from the superstar?

KB: Well, his shooting and scoring numbers are down slightly from last season, but I think that's more about the  emergence of Russell Westbrook as a legitimate scoring option than it is about KD taking a step back. His game is sensational and only growing and getting better. I don't think you'd find too many GMs who'd say that, given the choice, they'd want to start a team today with anyone else. The best way to judge Durant's season so far, and the way he'd do it? Through 45 games, the Thunder (29-16) are five games ahead of where they were last season, when they won 50 games and put a scare into the Lakers in the first round.


Have a burning NBA question you need answered? Email us at cbssportsnba@gmail.com, or drop Ken a question for the Friday 5 on Twitter at@cbssportsnba . 
Posted on: January 14, 2011 9:41 am
 

Report: Bobcats trying to dump Wallace

The Bobcats are reportedly considering trading Gerald Wallace for peanuts to struggling Cavaliers

Posted by Matt Moore

Just when things seem to be looking up for Bobcats fans, here comes Michael Jordan. 

Yahoo! Sports reports that the Bobcats are considering trading Gerald Wallace, their lone All-Star, to Cleveland for ... a first-round pick and the Cavaliers $14 million trade exception garnered when their All-Star LeBron James took off for South Beach. That's it.

That the Bobcats are considering trading Wallace should be no surprise. He has a big contract with multiple years left on his deal. He'll garner the most assets as he is their best overall player, and he's the easiest to move as people are actually interested in acquiring him. The team has never really committed to Wallace as a building block, and Wallace struggled for durations under now-fired Larry Brown. Even with the Bobcats 6-2 since Paul Silas took over and in the 8th playoff spot, moving Wallace is the best plan towards a true rebuilding effort. 

But this deal? This deal would be devastating. It's trading your best overall player, a high energy veteran who rebounds, steals, blocks, and scores for a first round pick when your history of drafts since Jordan came in with a strong voice has been nothing short of horrific.  And that's counting D.J. Augustin who has looked phenomenal this year in a season where many expected him to fail. Trading Wallace for only a pick and the trade exception, which you're unlikely to be able to move again in a clogged trade environment (thanks to both the upcoming CBA talks and Carmelo Anthony's situation) would set your franchise back significantly. All-Stars do not grow on trees in this league, and while Wallace is not a No.1 guy you can build around, he's a No.2 guy you can help to build around that star, should you find him.

For the Cavaliers, the deal makes sense to a certain degree, but only to a certain degree. Yes, he's a player you can help build around a star with like I said, but that's $31 million and three-years remaining on that player when you don't have that star in place and are as far from contention as you ever has been. The Cavs need to stay light and trim, maintaining flexibility should the right move come along, and target more draft picks, not fewer, in an attempt to rebuild. Make the right moves and you can pull yourself into Thunder capacity. But commit yourself to margin All-Stars without ever finding that No.1 guy and you're going to be spinning your wheels in NBA purgatory, the last place on Earth you want to be. 
Posted on: January 13, 2011 7:54 pm
Edited on: January 14, 2011 12:58 am
 

Report: Knicks talking to Memphis for Melo deal

Report states Knicks attempting to bring in Grizzlies to Melo talks with hopes of moving O.J. Mayo to Denver.

Posted by Matt Moore

An ESPN report states the Knicks have brought in the Memphis Grizzlies in an attempt to make a move on Carmelo Anthony while talks between the New Jersey Nets and the Nuggets have been strained. The primary piece in play sends the Nuggets O.J. Mayo, who has long been rumored to be on the trade block despite public insistence from the Grizzlies that they have no intention of trading the third-year star. 

New York was on the fence about getting into the talks as recently as ... oh, this morning , but of course these things move fast and if the Knicks see an opportunity to swoop in using a team like the Grizzlies as a facilitator -- much like New Jersey was attempting to with Detroit -- they're going to go for it.  Mayo would bring the Nuggets a young player to build around, who showed signs early on of being a 20-25 points-per-game scorer before regressing alongside the other young guys in Memphis.  Mayo showed potential in his rookie season and carried that over into last season. But with Mike Conley having an increased role in the offense alongside All-Star Zach Randolph and emerging star Rudy Gay, Mayo suffered an early-season slump that landed him on the bench, and since then, things haven't been the same for him.  

Should the Grizzlies get into this trade situation (and there has been no indication so far they're interested yet), they have to bring in actual talent as well as a pick. That needs to be the goal, not just being a cash dump for the Nuggets in order to avoid having to face public scrutiny over whether to re-sign Mayo or not.  Anything less than coming out the best in this deal results in further talk in the media and the league about Memphis being nothing but a clearinghouse for bad contracts. Michael Heisley's reputation can't afford another Pau-Gasol-like deal. 

The Knicks moving forward seems very much like seeking out an opportunity in a vacuum. The question is whether the Knicks can somehow finagle a better set-up than what they have offered from the Nets. 

And the trade rumors that won't die continue to not die. We should get T-shirts printed. 




Posted on: January 13, 2011 4:28 pm
Edited on: January 13, 2011 5:05 pm
 

Report: Knicks have deal for 1st rounder on table

Knicks reportedly have deal in place to obtain a first-round pick for Anthony Randolph should they elect to pursue a Carmelo Anthony trade. 
Posted by Matt Moore


The Knicks have a "contingent" deal in place to trade Anthony Randolph to the Minnesota Timberwolves for a first-round pick in the 2011 draft, according to a report from the New York Post .  The deal hasn't gone through yet due to Donnie Walsh being unsure about pursuing a trade for Carmelo Anthony, the only reason the Knicks want that pick. The Knicks have been pursuing the Randolph trade for months in case they can manage to get Denver to relent and open discussions (or if the Nuggets get so mad at the Nets as to open such discussions ). 

Randolph has been a disappointment his entire career. First in Golden State, where it was thought his problems were solely the result of Don Nelson's mismanagement, and now in New York, where the hyper-athletic youngster can't find time in Mike D'Antoni's system, which rewards hyper-athletic youngsters. He has pitifully low basketball IQ, difficulty with focus and has shown little to no playmaking ability. It's been the biggest disappointment for the Knicks in the last few months, which isn't bad considering how many pitches they've thrown. 

A first-round pick wouldn't be a bad asset to obtain for Randolph, even if Walsh and D'Antoni decided Melo was too much of a hassle to begin with. With no 2012 pick, as it was traded to the Rockets, nabbing two players in the top 20 would benefit the Knicks' depth. Additionally, should the pick be top-three protected, for example, it would provide them with an opportunity for a 2012 replacement pick, which would suit them fine, particularly since the Wolves seem to be headed nowhere near .500 in the short-term, Ricky Rubio or no Ricky Rubio. 

So Walsh may have the deal in place to start making moves. But with the Knicks still looking strong in the playoff hunt, he waits. This one may go down to the deadline wire on whether it goes through or not. 
Posted on: January 11, 2011 4:00 am
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Posted on: January 11, 2011 3:45 am
Edited on: January 11, 2011 3:59 am
 

Melo Update No. 7,459

The Nuggets are threatening the Nets with trading Melo to the Knicks and the Rockets want in on the Melo talks. 
Posted by Matt Moore

Guess who's back, back again. Carmelo Anthony rumors are back, tell a friend. Who probably already has stopped caring. Oh, I busted the rhyme. Oh, well. Life goes on. Here's the latest word on the Carmelo Anthony rumors as we enter day 7,000 of MeloDrama Watch. 
  • Sports Illustrated and the Houston Chronicle report that the Rockets have very quietly slipped in the back door while the Nets remain flabbergasted with Denver's seemingly moving target of required assets. Both reports state that the Rockets are "not close" to a deal, but hoping that thing stagnate with the Nets, opening the door for the Rockets to make a move before the deadline. 
  • Yahoo! Sports on the other hand is reporting that the Nuggets have "threatened" the Nets with trading Melo to the Knicks, deliberately to spite the Nets if talks of the deal being worked on don't go quiet to the public.

Let's begin with the threat, since it may be the most ridiculous development mentioned in this entire ordeal, and bear in mind that means it's more ridiculous than Johan Petro being the linchpin in a three-team deal involving as many as 15 players at once. 

In this scenario, the Nuggets are threatening a team with taking less assets in order to trade their star player to an already-playoff team in the hopes of angering their current trade partner who they have already jerked around for several months.  It's either an empty threat or an immature, pointless move. If it's the former, it's a transparent one as well. If it's the latter, it's yet another indication that Masai Ujiri may be in over his head. Ujiri has garnered acclaim for constantly working to squeeze the most out of this situation. But if he's really threatening other teams with trading with their rival, that's a pretty drama-queen move. 

Worse still, it moves the Nuggets no closer to resolution, and that's something they need to go ahead and do. The rumors have gotten so loud they've hit distraction level. They were just your usual stressor for the team for a while, but now they're a legitimate distraction and it's time to get it done. 

As for the Rockets, their name always pops up whenever trade rumors are discussed. Yet for all the assets the Rockets have, they've been unable to make a major move, outside of acquiring Courtney Lee and Terrence Williams.  They have two first round picks in 2012, but can't get in on any of the relevant discussions at an advanced stage. Furthermore, had Melo been interested in playing in Houston, that information would have been made available well before now. So while it's probably true that the Rockets have voiced their interest, their odds have to be considered abysmal at completing a deal. 
(For a blow-by-blow of the latest talks between the Nets and Nuggets, read Ken Berger's latest here.)
Posted on: December 17, 2010 9:37 pm
Edited on: December 18, 2010 12:04 am
 

Previously discussed Arenas deal getting closer

Report suggests Magic moving closer to previously discussed trade for Gilbert Arenas.
Posted by Matt Moore


Gilbert Arenas could be headed to the Magic. This is breaking, stunning news in the basketball world.

Except when Ken Berger told you about it in October . And then there's this headline from Magic blog Orlando Pinstriped Post from December 1st, a whole two weeks ago:



Huh. So maybe this isn't breaking news after all.

Regardless, Yahoo! Sports is reporting that now the Magic and Wizards are involved in "serious" discussions regarding a trade of Arenas to Orlando. This is opposed to previous discussions, which featured whoopie cushions, puns, and rubber chickens. Specifically advancing the story, Woj reports that Arenas has let the cat out of the bag to people close to him:
Arenas has privately told people for days that he believes a deal will soon send him to Orlando, where he’ll be reunited with Magic general manager Otis Smith, a friend and mentor from Arenas’ days with the Golden State Warriors . Sources said Orlando has escalated its pursuit of a deal in recent days. After losing five of their past six games, the Magic have shown more urgency to find a perimeter scorer who can help them stay a viable contender in the Eastern Conference.
No indications yet if it was Arenas' gun club he was speaking to. Speaking of bad jokes.

Orlando has to make a move and soon if they want to try and capitalize on the Dwight Howard window. Howard has indicated of course that he likes Orlando, but has been very clear about not verbally committing to a team that may not be contending. The Magic have taken steps back each season since their Finals appearance, starting with the decision to jettison Hedo Turkoglu for Vince Carter. Lately they've become not only mortal, but predictable. Frustrations have boiled over, and the time to make a move is now.

The teams are still debating assets to send back to Washington but Vince Carter and Marcin Gortat are likely being discussed.

Adding Arenas is a calculated risk. If he can stay healthy and play to his ceiling, he could be a better version of Jameer Nelson, alongside him. The question is whether that's enough to make a difference for the Magic versus the elite teams in the East. But with only so many stars available, you have to make a move when you have the opportunity.

This might be that time for Orlando.
 
 
 
 
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