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indyblue47
06-13-2007, 09:03 AM
Anyone here an ESPN Insider?

http://insider.espn.go.com/espn/blog/index?entryID=2901568&name=sheridan_chris&action=login&appRedirect=http%3a%2f%2finsider.espn.go.com%2fesp n%2fblog%2findex%3fentryID%3d2901568%26name%3dsher idan_chris





Kobe to Knicks? Could happen posted: Tuesday, June 12, 2007 | Print Entry

The Kobe Bryant situation has been quiet for almost two weeks now, ever since Bryant and owner Jerry Buss spoke on the telephone and Buss released a statement expressing his desire to keep Bryant in a Lakers uniform.

Since Buss is now vacationing in China and is not due back for another week or so, expect things to stay quiet for a while longer.

One thing to keep in mind as this thing bubbles beneath the surface: Nobody except Buss and Bryant knows exactly what was said on their phone call, but a day earlier Buss had responded to Bryant's formal trade request -- which was made to general manager Mitch Kupchak by agent Rob Pelinka -- by issuing a public statement essentially saying he wanted to hear those words come out of Kobe's mouth.


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Slick Pinkham
06-13-2007, 09:21 AM
full article:

Kobe to Knicks? Could happen

posted: Tuesday, June 12, 2007 | Print Entry

The Kobe Bryant situation has been quiet for almost two weeks now, ever since Bryant and owner Jerry Buss spoke on the telephone and Buss released a statement expressing his desire to keep Bryant in a Lakers uniform.

Since Buss is now vacationing in China and is not due back for another week or so, expect things to stay quiet for a while longer.

One thing to keep in mind as this thing bubbles beneath the surface: Nobody except Buss and Bryant knows exactly what was said on their phone call, but a day earlier Buss had responded to Bryant's formal trade request -- which was made to general manager Mitch Kupchak by agent Rob Pelinka -- by issuing a public statement essentially saying he wanted to hear those words come out of Kobe's mouth.

So we don't really know with 100 percent certainty whether in his heart of hearts Bryant does or doesn't want out, although I'm hearing that the formal trade request remains on the table.

Now, if that trade request ever turns into a trade demand, there's a good case to be made that Kobe will end up with either the New York Knicks or Chicago Bulls.

Here's why, and how.

If Kobe really, truly wants out, the Lakers have almost no choice but to grant his wish.

Yes, they could play hardball with him and make him hold out when training camp arrives, but Kobe would then be holding the entire franchise hostage while he waited them out. He's the league's pre-eminent superstar, and he's not going to be pushed around.

He's also about as stubborn a person as the NBA has ever seen. Sometimes it serves him well, sometimes it doesn't. But he's stubborn. And if Jerry Buss plays poker against Kobe, he loses. And Jerry knows it.

"If I'm Mitch Kupchak, I'm looking right now to see where my leverage would be, and I'm not finding any," one NBA general manager told me.

A holdout would cost Bryant a lot of money and would be ruinous to all the image rehabilitation he's accomplished over the past year, but he'd make up for the financial loss many times over through his 15 percent trade kicker, and his image, as we've seen, is reparable no matter how bad things get.

So here's the next big thing: Kobe's no-trade clause.

Because Kobe can veto any trade, he can dictate where the Lakers must trade him by giving them a list of acceptable destinations. That is the power of the no-trade clause, and Kobe is the only guy in the league who has one.

Next you would look at where he might want to go -- and where the Lakers could accommodate him while still helping themselves.

I don't think Buss could live with trading Kobe to a Western Conference team and having him come into Staples to face the Lakers twice a year (and two times more to face the Clippers, plus, potentially, another set of visits in a playoff series vs. the Lakers), so I'm excising all West teams from my list of possibilities.

So we move to the East, and we look at where Kobe might want to play.

Philadelphia: One thought is Philly, because Kobe wants more than anything to be loved, and nowhere is he hated more than in his hometown (and nowhere would he be greeted as more of a hero). The problem is, it would take a minimum of Andre Miller and Andre Iguodala to get Kobe, and that would leave the Sixers with next to nothing other than Kobe. They've been down that path with Iverson, and anyway Kobe wants to win a championship.

Miami: Forget it. Not unless the Heat are giving up Dwyane Wade, which they aren't.

Atlanta: Too young. Years away from contending. Too far off the national radar.

Detroit: You never say never, especially after they looked old and done against Cleveland, but the market-size drop-off would be a problem for Kobe.

Boston: For Paul Pierce? Maybe, but they would still be far from a championship-level team, even with Bryant.

Chicago: This is the team I hear as one of the strongest possibilities, although its questionable whether John Paxson would be willing to gut the core of his team to get Bryant.

Paxson would probably have to start with Luol Deng and Ben Gordon, and perhaps Chris Duhon, and he would probably have to include a signed-and-traded Andres Nocioni or P.J. Brown to make the salaries work.

That would be an enormous amount for Paxson to surrender, especially given the way he has shaped the team's salary structure for the next 3-4 years.

New York: If Chicago is one of the logical places for Bryant to end up, that raises the question of which team could make a competing offer. That's where Knicks coach and president Isiah Thomas would come in.

I've known Isiah a long time, so trust me when I tell you he would go to the end of the earth and do whatever it takes to get a deal like this done. He wants his legacy to be something special in New York, and Kobe Bryant could help assure that. Furthermore, Bryant has previously expressed interest in lighting up Gotham.

As a trade partner, what the Knicks lack in quality, they have in quantity. In terms of volume, Isiah could overwhelm almost any other offer out there, starting with combo guard Jamal Crawford, rebounding machine David Lee, Knicks starting power forward Channing Frye, a pair of unprotected No. 1 picks (let's say 2008 and 2010) and sundry throw-ins, including Nate Robinson, Randolph Morris, Renaldo Balkman, et al.

Crawford can score 20 points a night, and he'll go prolific for you at least twice a month. Lee is a double-double man, and the most popular player on the Knicks, an energy guy who will easily play in the league for 10 more years if he stays healthy. He's far from a bum, and the same goes for Frye, who could start for the Lakers for the next seven seasons.

No, there's no superstar in here, but it's a lot of lumber.And if you're rebuilding, you need a cache of young talent. Lee, Frye and Robinson are still on their rookie contracts. Crawford has a reasonable long-term deal ($7.9 next season, with a contract that ends after he makes $10.08 million in 2010-11). The Lakers would actually have cap space, lots of it, after Lamar Odom's contract ends in the summer of '09.

Nothing, however, will happen unless Kobe forces Buss' hand. That hasn't happened yet, and it still might not happen if the Lakers can make a major deal to put some new talent around Kobe and placate him. Certainly we've all heard about the possibility of Jermaine O'Neal and/or other players joining Bryant in L.A.

But if that doesn't happen, I wouldn't be surprised if Kobe pipes up publicly again, this time demanding -- not requesting -- a trade.

And if that happens, I think he'll end up in Chicago or New York.

RWB
06-13-2007, 09:54 AM
Some additional talk on Bryant and JO to the Knicks

http://www.nypost.com/seven/06132007/sports/knicks/zeke_eyes_big_score_knicks_marc_berman.htm

WORKING PHONES IN SEARCH OF STUD
By MARC BERMAN
GAME ON! Isiah Thomas (2nd from right) attends news conference yesterday to announce Knicks' Oct. 11 MSG exhibition vs. Maccabi Tel Aviv. Joining Thomas were (l to r) former Israeli ambassador Arye Mekel, Maccabi president Tal Brody, and Tony Fromer, VP of American Friends of Migdal Ohr, a charity for underprivileged kids in Israel.June 13, 2007 -- Despite odds stacked against him, Knicks president/coach Isiah Thomas has not given up on making a big move this offseason.

Though Thomas did not name them, he noted prominent players such as Kobe Bryant and Jermaine O'Neal have asked for trades - and promised he'd be active in attempting to acquire them.

"It's safe to say we're active on the phones, trying to improve our team, whatever ways we can," Thomas said yesterday after a Garden news conference to announce next season's preseason game vs. Maccabi Tel Aviv.

"Our goal one day is to put together a team capable of competing and winning a championship.

"There are players who are still out there who publicly said they want to be traded. I'm hoping."

Thomas has not approached the Lakers yet with a firm offer, though he admitted at Orlando's pre-draft camp he concocted a series of tentative offers. Sources say the Knicks would be atop Bryant's and O'Neal's wish lists. Bryant has a no-trade clause and can nix any deal

Frank Slade
06-13-2007, 10:44 AM
Outakes from another article by the NY Post ...

By MARC BERMAN
June 12, 2007 -- Stephon Marbury said yesterday he'd like to see president/coach Isiah Thomas add another perimeter shooter in the June 28 NBA draft, in which the Knicks hold the 23rd pick.
......

But Thomas is looking to make a bigger score this summer - he even began plotting a package to acquire Kobe Bryant before Bryant backtracked on his trade request.

Bryant was the first guest on Marbury's cable talk show, but he knows Knick fans would rather see them together in the backcourt - not schmoozing on the couch.

"That would be spectacular, something that a lot of people would want to see," Marbury mused.

Marbury feels if Bryant and Indiana's Jermaine O'Neal, another Thomas target, still want out, he expects their wishes to be granted.

O'Neal and Bryant both have wanderlust for New York. Bryant has a no-trade clause and can potentially steer his way to the Knicks, however unlikely. In figures released yesterday, Bryant's jersey was the NBA's No. 1 seller. Marbury's ranked seventh.

Marbury isn't shocked by Bryant's stance.

"This is a business at the end of the day," Marbury said. "He wants to win, he knows what it tastes like and he's still hungry for that taste."

Meanwhile, O'Neal wants to reunite with Thomas, for whom he played in Indiana.

"My personal opinion, if I'm the GM of a team and he doesn't want to play for you anymore, you move on [and] do everything possible to move him and get something in return," Marbury said.

"Knowing [Pacer GM] Larry Bird as a player and his demeanor, his attitude, if you don't want to play for him, he'll get somebody else."

Marbury feels the Knicks are easily a playoff team without additions but added, "If Isiah has the opportunity to add Kevin Garnett or O'Neal, you have to consider that - it's crazy not to."..cont'd

marc.berman@nypost.com NYPOST (http://www.nypost.com/seven/06122007/sports/knicks/steph_to_zeke__take_a_shooter_in_draft_knicks_marc _berman.htm)

Anthem
06-13-2007, 10:47 AM
In my dream world, Thomas would get Garnett, forcing the Lakers and Pacers to deal with each other.

I was really hoping to see a good trade with LA.

bread
06-13-2007, 10:51 AM
Marbury feels if Bryant and Indiana's Jermaine O'Neal, another Thomas target, still want out, he expects their wishes to be granted.
"My personal opinion, if I'm the GM of a team and he doesn't want to play for you anymore, you move on [and] do everything possible to move him and get something in return," Marbury said.

"Knowing [Pacer GM] Larry Bird as a player and his demeanor, his attitude, if you don't want to play for him, he'll get somebody else."

Marbury feels the Knicks are easily a playoff team without additions but added, "If Isiah has the opportunity to add Kevin Garnett or O'Neal, you have to consider that - it's crazy not to."..cont'd



This sounds a lot like tampering.

Trader Joe
06-13-2007, 11:07 AM
Somebody needs to tell the entire Knicks organization to keep their ****ing mouths shut.

bellisimo
06-13-2007, 12:06 PM
did I miss something? when did O'Neal came out and demanded a trade?

avoidingtheclowns
06-13-2007, 12:09 PM
isiah is probably talking about the comments SJax made about O'Neal wanting out.

and who knows really, maybe o'neal has asked TPTB for a trade, just not to the media or on ESPN radio

indygeezer
06-13-2007, 12:16 PM
This sounds a lot like tampering.


Agree 100%..........I hope TPTB take notice and file grievience.

I'll take Frye and 2 #1's

LoneGranger33
06-13-2007, 12:17 PM
isiah is probably talking about the comments SJax made about O'Neal wanting out.

and who knows really, maybe o'neal has asked TPTB for a trade, just not to the media or on ESPN radio

Yeah, I don't think JO would put us at the "Ron disadvantage".

grace
06-13-2007, 12:29 PM
I'm assuming Kobe wants out of LA because he doesn't think they're winning enough. Why then would he want to go to the Knicks who can't even make the playoffs in the East?

avoidingtheclowns
06-13-2007, 12:42 PM
playing in jordan's shadow vs. owning new york city because you not only led them back to the playoffs and possibly more since the knicks are prone to big spending. david stern would never suspend kobe again if he was a knick.

indygeezer
06-13-2007, 01:06 PM
David Stern would be the happiest person on the planet if Kobe went to NY.


and then they add JO................

CableKC
06-13-2007, 01:07 PM
did I miss something? when did O'Neal came out and demanded a trade?
I don't know about you....but there is something in the back of my mind that thinks that IF there is any significant reports that any "possible trade talks" between the Pacers and Lakers are starting to "breakdown" and its beginning to clearly look like no deal is on the horizon.....that JONeal will actually say ( or leak ) something to force TPTB to concede on some demand so that the trade can happen and he can go join his buddy in LakerLand.

bread
06-13-2007, 01:09 PM
Agree 100%..........I hope TPTB take notice and file grievience.

I'll take Frye and 2 #1's

That works for me!:D

CableKC
06-13-2007, 01:16 PM
In my dream world, Thomas would get Garnett, forcing the Lakers and Pacers to deal with each other.

I was really hoping to see a good trade with LA.
If anything.....this article reinforces the Lakers to make a deal with any team that they are dealing with now in order to keep Kobe happy. The alternative is that IF they don't make a trade....then the Lakers stand a good chance to lose out on Kobe.

Young
06-13-2007, 01:29 PM
If the Pacers can get Bynum, i'd perfere sending O'Neal there.

However the Knicks would probably be my second choice, maybe third behind the Celtics.

Anyways the Knicks can give us a nice deal.

They could offer a deal that include Frye, Crawford, Rose and a player or two like Lee (maybe), Collins, Robinson, Richardson, etc.

Frank Slade
06-13-2007, 03:56 PM
Speaking of "tampering".. :innocent:


Isiah will shoot for top stars
Wednesday, June 13, 2007
BY DAVID WALDSTEIN
Star-Ledger Staff

NEW YORK -- Isiah Thomas has not given up on the dream of landing an established superstar this summer, most notably Kobe Bryant or Jermaine O'Neal if they become available.

Thomas did not mention any names, but said yesterday he was open for business if the Lakers or Pacers decide to move their marquee stars.

"There are players still out there who have publicly said they want to be traded," Thomas said. "I'm open."

Bryant is the only player to have publicly (very publicly) requested a trade -- although a few hours later he retracted it, sort of. And it is widely believed that O'Neal wants to be traded, too, and specifically to the Knicks, where his mentor, Thomas, runs the show.

Thomas also said he hasn't changed his long-term strategy, which is to get under the salary cap in two years and then go after the premium class of free agents that will be available then, including Bryant and LeBron James.

But if Bryant goes back to demanding a trade, and if O'Neal and the Pacers agree to part ways -- which seems very possible -- Thomas wants in on the conversation.

Even if Bryant does go back to demanding a trade again, many hurdles would have to be cleared before the Lakers would follow through, and every team in the NBA would be after him, as well.

But the Knicks can't be ruled out. Bryant has a no-trade clause, which means he could veto any trade he doesn't like. And if he really wants to go to the only other market that can match Los Angeles, he could try to force the Lakers to deal him to the Knicks.

If he does, Thomas will be waiting with open arms. And as for O'Neal, Thomas also has a special relationship with him from their days in Indiana, and would love to pair him with Eddy Curry up front. Thomas will also monitor whether he can acquire Minnesota's Kevin Garnett or Seattle's Rashard Lewis.

"It's safe to say we're active on the phones trying to improve our team," he said. "Whatever ways that we can improve our team, or put ourselves in a position to improve our team in the future, we'll continue to do that."
.......cont'd...

Thomas ruled out the idea of hiring Patrick Ewing as an assistant coach. "The staff is pretty full right now," Thomas said. "We probably have one more assistant than we really need. So, I don't think I would bring anyone in at this time." Star-Ledger (http://www.nj.com/printer/printer.ssf?/base/sports-0/1181713587206180.xml&coll=1)

bread
06-13-2007, 07:30 PM
Thomas did not mention any names


This is what keeps him out of trouble. But Starbury actually called out JO by name.

pwee31
06-13-2007, 08:09 PM
If the Pacers can get Bynum, i'd perfere sending O'Neal there.

However the Knicks would probably be my second choice, maybe third behind the Celtics.

Anyways the Knicks can give us a nice deal.

They could offer a deal that include Frye, Crawford, Rose and a player or two like Lee (maybe), Collins, Robinson, Richardson, etc.

If you trade with the Knicks, Crawford, Frye, Lee and #23 HAVE to be involved. You'll probably have to add a filler or 2 for contracts to work. Or rmaybe take on Francis and send Murphy with JO.

Maybe even a future 1st, or add a 3rd team.

I still would prefer a Laker or Celtic deal. I'm personally unsure if JO wants to be here anymore!

In 2 weeks, things should start clearing up

OnlyPacersLeft
06-13-2007, 10:25 PM
why in the hell send our franchise player to the KNICKS of all teams? i don't know what's worse...KNICKS or LAKERS...uhgggggggggggg