View Full Version : Insider for 6/22 several Pacers mentions (article not posted)
06-22-2004, 11:50 AM
Pacers trding Al, 29th pick to the Cavs for the 10th pick and Wagner and Ollie.
Also, the Magic are stuck because T-mac only wants to play for the Rockets.
Someone will get the link I am sure
06-22-2004, 12:13 PM
I usually go (as I've now mentioned in a reply on the READ THIS FIRST post) to phxsuns.net to get it, but they haven't posted it yet.
That's an interesting trade. No idea why we need Ollie though. Unless AJ's gone.
06-22-2004, 12:31 PM
That's an interesting trade. No idea why we need Ollie though. Unless AJ's gone.
We are down to one point guard with Brewer expected to be picked in the expansion draft. This way if AJ resigns he will still only be the third point. Not like last year when we had 4.
06-22-2004, 12:40 PM
Sorry guys, did not intend to get your hopes up, thought someone would have posted it by now. I have not figured out how to cut/copy and paste those insider columns yet, not that I have spent any time trying.
Ford also says the Rockets Magic deal is not done as the Magic are still recieving offers from other teams. But Pacers have not heard back from the Magic in the past 48 hours
06-22-2004, 04:01 PM
Ford: The NBA's Perfect Storm
Has there ever been a weekend where three of the league's top five stars all
began packing their bags at the same time? Shaquille O'Neal wants a trade. So
does Tracy McGrady. Kobe Bryant is opting out. If that isn't enough to make you
renew your Insider subscription, we're not sure what is.
Insider was on the phone with numerous league sources over the weekend. Here's
the scuttle on where Shaq, T-Mac and Kobe might land in the next month.
Shaq to Big D?
Shaquille O'Neal's demand to be traded has less to do with Kobe than it does
with his desire to tack an extra two years, $60 million onto his current
contract, which has two years left. Sources told Insider that owner Jerry Buss
doesn't even want to discuss such a large extension. That decision, not the end
of the Phil Jackson tenure, prompted Shaq to demand a trade. Shaq knows his
window to cash in one last time is closing. He's 32 now and will be 34 when his
contract is up. Does anyone believe Shaq can get that type of extension two
years from now? It's now or never, which is why Shaq wants to be traded to a
team willing to cut the check.
Sources claim the Lakers don't really want to trade Shaq but are willing to move
him if they can get a young superstar plus cap relief for next summer in return.
Four teams look like they could be possible trading partners for the Lakers.
Option 1: The Pacers aren't parting with Jermaine O'Neal. A combo of Al
Harrington and Ron Artest might make the Lakers notice, but having to swallow
the contracts of Scot Pollard and Austin Croshere as part of the deal make it
less desirable. But would Donnie Walsh & Co. really be willing to break up the
team for Shaq? And would the owners be willing to commit the extra $60 million
to keep the big fella happy?
Option 2: The Grizzlies could combine Pau Gasol, Bonzi Wells, Bo Outlaw and
Lorenzen Wright to create a package that would work a bit better for the Lakers.
Wells and Outlaw come off the books next season, freeing up significant cap
room. But this is a potential straight-up Gasol-for-Shaq deal. Is that enough
value to get back for Shaq? The Grizzlies probably would be willing to do the
extension. Jerry West has been searching for a dominant big man since he got to
Memphis, and we all know that he has a great relationship with Shaq.
Option 3: The Blazers also could put together a package of Theo Ratliff, Damon
Stoudamire, Zach Randolph and the No. 13 pick in the draft for Shaq. Stoudamire
comes off the books next year, Randolph was the Most Improved Player of the Year
at the four, and Ratliff is still one of the best shot-blockers in the league.
Paul Allen wouldn't hesitate to spend the cash for Shaq. But if the Blazers give
up this much for Shaq, will they have enough players around him to win a title?
Option 4: That leaves us with the Mavericks. Reports out of Dallas claim owner
Mark Cuban would give up anyone on his roster, with the exception of Dirk
Nowitzki, for Shaq. However, a source in Dallas told Insider over the weekend
that the Mavericks absolutely would be willing to give up Nowitzki and Antoine
Walker for O'Neal. The Mavs aren't going to win a championship without a real
presence in the middle. No one else they have can command a decent big man back
in a trade. This is Cuban's best chance to win a championship. Nowitzki is a
high price to pay, but it's worth it. The Mavs would field a team that still had
Steve Nash (they'd re-sign him for sure, to play with Shaq), Michael Finley,
Josh Howard and Antawn Jamison. Put Shaq in the middle, and it's the best team
in the NBA -- more formidable, in my mind, than the team the Lakers fielded this
year. Even if Shaq only plays well for two more seasons, a real shot at a
championship is worth the risk.
Would the Lakers bite on any of those options? The trade with Dallas makes the
most sense by far. The Lakers add a young versatile All-Star forward to work
with Kobe. They clear Walker's $14.5 million salary off the books next summer.
Given that Gary Payton, Rick Fox and Derek Fisher also will be gone in a year,
the Lakers would be looking at $10 million-plus to use in the 2005 free agent
market. The Lakers have had zero trouble recruiting free agents in the past.
With a core of Kobe and Nowitzki, the Lakers can salvage their team and their
image. All of the other options leave the Lakers struggling for credibility.
It's a deal made in Mark Cuban heaven. Don't be shocked if Cuban and Buss pull
Kobe back to L.A.?
Kobe has opted out of his deal and likely will take his time deciding where he
wants to play next year. Sources close to Bryant told Insider over the weekend
that his first choice still is to remain a Laker. The same sources contend
Bryant had little to do with the Lakers' break-up. Buss was balking at the huge
amounts of money Jackson ($10 million per season) and Shaq (two-year,
$60-million extension) were demanding. That precipitated, more than anything
else, the decision to let Jackson walk and to consider trading Shaq.
What does that have to do with Kobe? He wants to explore his options, but he's
inclined to re-sign with the Lakers as long as he's sure the team still has the
necessary pieces to win. He's loyal to L.A., but not if that means being part of
a long rebuilding process. If Shaq comes back, the Lakers will be contenders
again, regardless of the supporting cast around him. If Shaq is traded, it's
much less clear. A deal with a team like Dallas would keep the Lakers relevant.
Other trades, like ones the Pacers or Grizzlies might offer, probably mean the
Lakers would take a step back for a few years.
With at least one championship contender, the Spurs, clearing enough cap room to
make a run Kobe, the Lakers will have serious competition for his services.
T-Mac to the Clippers?
Shaq leaving. Kobe staying. What, you ask, does T-Mac have to do with all of
this? He reportedly has told friends his ultimate desire is to play with Shaq.
That's not going to happen in L.A. T-Mac has looked to Dallas as a possible
destination. Unless the Magic are willing to swallow an equally bad contract in
return -- and they're not -- it just doesn't make sense. They'd want Nowitzki
for T-Mac the same way the Lakers would for Shaq. It's one or the other.
McGrady may be controlling the process -- no team will trade for him without a
guarantee he'll sign an extension -- but the Magic are partners too. They don't
have to trade McGrady right now. T-Mac wants out and knows he has to work with
the Magic to make it happen. Where will he land?
Option 1: The Rockets are rumored to be in the lead, offering a combo of Steve
Francis, Cuttino Mobley and Kelvin Cato for McGrady and Juwan Howard. That
sounds like a fantasy trade that every other owner would veto. We know John
Weisbrod is a hockey guy, but even he should know this is a terrible deal for
the Magic. If the Rockets pull this off, pencil them into the Western Conference
Option 2: The Pacers want to get something done but aren't giving up Ron Artest,
Al Harrington, Jonathan Bender and Jamaal Tinsley for T-Mac. It's just too much.
The deal would be Harrington and either Artest or Bender. That's as far as
they're willing to go. The team doesn't really want to trade either Artest or
Bender, and they certainly won't ship away both players -- even for T-Mac. Add
Harrington and Bender to a front court with Emeka Okafor, and the Magic could be
set for a long time. They'd have to seriously consider it.
Option 3: The Suns are willing to give up Shawn Marion, Casey Jacobsen and
either the No. 7 or Joe Johnson for T-Mac. Marion is an all-star caliber small
forward. With the No. 7 pick, the team could land a top-notch point guard like
Devin Harris, Ben Gordon or Shaun Livingston. Jacobsen is serviceable at the
two. Put that together with the No. 1 pick -- an Okafor/Gordon reunion, perhaps?
-- and the Magic would be back in the playoffs almost immediately.
Option 4: The Clippers may have the best package to offer, but would T-Mac play
there? One source close to McGrady told Insider he'd "consider it." Why? Because
the huge media market would make his endorsement opportunities much more
lucrative. The Clippers also would have a pretty strong starting group with
Elton Brand, McGrady, Chris Kaman, a re-signed Quentin Richardson and Marko
Jaric. The team would be willing to give up Corey Maggette, Chris Wilcox and the
No. 2 to get McGrady. That's a slam dunk for the Magic, who could draft Okafor
and either Dwight Howard or Shaun Livingston to make one of the best young teams
in the NBA. If McGrady believes the Clippers will keep spending, it would be an
opportunity he'd have to consider. It may be the only way the Clippers are
willing to do the trade.
Which way will the Magic go? The Suns, Clippers and Pacers all look like they
could make offers that might make Weisbrod pull the trigger. Some of it will
come down to T-Mac's preference. He wants to play in Houston, but the Rockets'
offer isn't close to those of the other three teams. At the end of the day, I
see either the Suns or Clippers landing him.
Chad Ford covers the NBA for ESPN Insider.
06-22-2004, 04:05 PM
Jay, that is not the article that is currently on ESPN Insider, at least it is not the latest article by Chad Ford
06-22-2004, 04:09 PM
Rookie mistake. Sorry for the confusion. - Jay
By Chad Ford
Let's get this straight.
This week we've learned that All-Star swingman Tracy McGrady might be swapped
for All-Star point guard Steve Francis. All-Star center Shaquille O'Neal might
be shipped to Dallas for All-Star power forward Dirk Nowitzki and former
All-Star power forward Antoine Walker. All-Star shooting guard Kobe Bryant is
becoming a free agent and is a hot commodity, even though there's a chance next
long-term deal could be in prison.
The NBA expansion draft is Tuesday night, and a flurry of trades are expected to
come shortly thereafter. We've already seen a trade of two of the top four picks
in the NBA draft with talk of more on the way.
We're just waiting for Tim Duncan to fax in his retirement papers.
The NBA silly season is in full swing. Can anyone remember a time when more
elements have been in motion at the same time? Here's the latest on what's
shaping up as the NBA's perfect storm.
T-Mac for Francis?
Monday, the Houston Chronicle and ESPN's Jim Gray were reporting a deal that
would send Tracy McGrady, Juwan Howard and Tyronn Lue to the Rockets for Steve
Francis, Cuttino Mobley and Kelvin Cato was "close."
Several things could keep this particular deal from happening before July 15.
First, Francis is a base-year compensation player and is difficult to move until
his base-year status expires June 30. Normally he'd be eligible to be traded the
next day, July 1, but the NBA prohibits trades between July 1 and July 15, the
time window in which teams can woo, but not sign, free agents. However, with
some minor tweaking of the deal, Francis could be moved within the rules of the
collective bargaining agreement as it pertains to base-year compensation.
Second, sources say the deal Orlando and Houston are discussing also includes
Reece Gaines, who is among the players the Magic left exposed in the expansion
draft and thus would be holding up the deal. Gaines can't be traded until after
the expansion draft (assuming he isn't selected by the Bobcats). Reports that
Howard was left unprotected (and thus was holding up the deal) are inaccurate,
according to league sources. The Magic did not expose Howard to the expansion
Several league sources with knowledge of the negotiations, including two GMs who
are trying to pry McGrady away from Orlando, told Insider on Monday evening that
a deal with the Rockets is not "a done deal." One league source with knowledge
of the negotiations told Insider on Tuesday morning that Orlando still is
soliciting and receiving offers from other teams. According to the source, the
Magic still were talking with the Rockets about the deal reported Monday but had
not yet made a final decision.
The Suns, Clippers and Pacers also have made bids to acquire McGrady. All of
them, on the surface at least, appear to be able to offer much better deals for
the Magic than the one in play with the Rockets. However, two of those teams
told Insider on Monday night they hadn't had any contact with the Magic in the
previous 48 hours.
"I'm not sure what's going on," one GM told Insider. "We made an offer, they
seemed interested, but they never called back. It was a better offer than the
Rockets' one. However, we're not going to negotiate against ourselves."
Complicating matters is Francis' reluctance to play in Orlando. Francis' agent,
Jeff Fried, told the Houston Chronicle on Monday evening his client didn't want
to play for the Magic. "Steve's preference is to not go to Orlando," Fried told
the Chronicle. "Steve's tasted the playoffs. (The Rockets) got a series under
their belts. He was looking forward to going further with the same Rockets team
but with another year of experience together. This is certainly not his
preference. He loves Houston. Steve loved the fans and his teammates. He's very
friendly with Cuttino but also pretty friendly with Yao (Ming). Many of us
thought there were the beginnings of something big there with a great center and
great point guard."
However, that may not be as big a stumbling block as it appears. One league
source told Insider that if the Magic do end up pulling the trigger on the
Rockets trade, it will be just the first in a series of moves that could see
Francis or other pieces the Magic get back from Houston being moved to other
teams. In other words, everyone may have to wait and reserve judgement on this
deal until the Magic finish the rest of their rebuilding.
That should bring a huge sigh of relief from Magic fans. On paper, the
McGrady-for-Francis swap has the potential to be a disaster for the Magic. One
GM went so far as to claim the Magic "could get even worse" if they made this
trade. Francis has as much baggage as McGrady, and possibly more. He's coming
off an awful year where new head coach Jeff Van Gundy asked him to play more
like a point guard and less like a guy determined to jack up 20-plus shots a
night. While McGrady is widely considered a top-five player in the NBA, Francis'
reputation around the league has greatly diminished. Folks in Houston feel the
backcourt of Francis and Mobley can't win because of its lack of size and
playmaking instincts. Would the duo fare any in better in Orlando?
So why haven't the Magic searched harder for a better deal? According to
sources, T-Mac is insisting he'll only sign a contract extension with the
Rockets. Because McGrady can opt out of his contract after next season, the
teams willing to trade for McGrady want a guarantee he'll sign an extension if
they acquire him. Should the Magic really buy into T-Mac's bluff? Teams like the
Pacers, Suns and even the Clippers would have just as good a chance to win with
Other offers that the Magic may be mulling include:
Pacers: They've reportedly offered Al Harrington, and either Jonathan Bender or
Ron Artest for T-Mac. Adding so many bigs makes much more sense for Orlando than
piecing together a smallish backcourt.
Suns: They're offering Shawn Marion, Casey Jacobsen and either the No. 7 pick or
Joe Johnson. Again, the extra size and youth make more sense for the Magic.
Clippers: They're reportedly willing to give up Corey Maggette, the No. 4 pick
and possibly Chris Wilcox for McGrady. This is the best deal if McGrady will
agree to play in L.A.
Shaq to Big D?
One day after Insider reported the Mavericks would be the front-runners to land
Shaquille O'Neal in a trade, Mavs owner Mark Cuban told reporters he'd jump at
the chance to land Shaq.
"I would do it," he said, "and you can quote me on that."
"We're in a better position to go after senior [veteran] players than we are to
go after young guys, just because of the salaries we have," Cuban said. "Have we
talked to them? The answer is no. Will we? Most likely."
Any trade for Shaq likely would include the Mavs sending Dirk Nowitzki away as
part of the compensation. That would be tough, but not impossible, for Cuban and
the Mavs to swallow.
"I'd be hard-pressed to see us trading Dirk," Cuban said. "Dirk is as close to
untouchable as you can get. Never say never, because there's always something
that can change it."
Close, however, doesn't mean untouchable.
The rumors, courtesy of the N.Y. Post, that the Clippers also are making a run
at Shaq, offering Elton Brand, Corey Maggette and Melvin Ely in return for the
Big Fella, seem a lot more far-fetched. While the Lakers probably would jump at
the deal, the Clippers would be left with Shaq, Chris Kaman, Quentin Richardson
and Chris Wilcox. That wouldn't be pretty.
Who are the Clippers going to select with the No. 4 pick? The answer depends who
you ask. Several sources claim they covet Shaun Livingston. However, several
other sources claim it could be UConn's Ben Gordon. Gordon had a phenomenal
workout in Los Angeles on Sunday, then mysteriously pulled out of his scheduled
workout with the Suns on Monday, fueling rumors that the Clippers gave Gordon a
promise at No. 4. And don't count out Devin Harris, who also had a solid workout
for the Clips and has the maturity and point guard skills that head coach Mike
Dunleavy is looking for.
The Cavs are among the many teams in the lottery trying to move down. The Pacers
still are trying to move up. The Cavs are dangling the 10th pick in the draft in
an effort to land Al Harrington. The Pacers have been interested in Luke Jackson
for months and could grab him at No. 10. The Cavs, who prefer veterans, would
grab another great piece of their puzzle in Harrington. What's holding up that
deal? The Pacers are still holding out hope
Expansion Draft Rumors
Tuesday night's expansion draft should add anywhere from three to six pieces to
the Bobcats' puzzle. For the most part, the work is already done. Charlotte must
submit its list to the league no later than noon ET Tuesday. Several league
sources told Insider on Monday that the Bobcats already have agreed to two
trades and may make two or three more before the night is done.
What's going on?
The Bobcats are hoping Emeka Okafor falls to them at No. 2. There's talk
Charlotte and Orlando might work out a deal in which the Magic agree not to take
Okafor at No. 1, leaving him to the Bobcats, in exchange for an as-yet
undisclosed favor from Charlotte.
Look for the Bobcats to select Jahidi White in return for a future Suns
first-rounder and $3 million in cash. The move clears an extra $6.1 million in
cap room for the Suns. The Bobcats likely will either waive or trade White.
The Knicks, Spurs and Bobcats were discussing a deal late Monday that would have
the Bobcats selecting Malik Rose off the unprotected list. Here's how it would
work if the three teams make a deal: The Spurs, who are trying to clear cap
space to make some noise in the free-agent market, would send the Bobcats $3
million and their first-round pick (No. 28) in return for Charlotte selecting
Rose. The Bobcats then would ship Rose to the Knicks for Dikembe Mutombo, who is
in the last year of his contract, and the Knicks' second-round pick. Mutombo
would end up costing the Bobcats a little more than $1 million once you factor
in the Spurs' cash payment.
There's also talk the Bobcats will select the Jazz's Alexsander Pavlovic with an
eye toward moving him to another team. The Bobcats are looking for a future
first-rounder and cash to facilitate the deal.
The Bobcats are also actively looking to acquire another late-lottery to
mid-first-round pick. Their target is point Jameer Nelson, another seasoned
college veteran whom Bernie Bickerstaff loves.
Chad Ford covers the NBA for ESPN Insider.
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