Free-Agent Roundup: July 3

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From NBA.com staff reports

The courting of Dwight Howard is officially over (thank goodness!) … now we’ve just got to wait on his decision. The Dwight/Lakers drama isn’t affecting what the Clippers are doing this offseason as they continue to add solid pieces to their Pacific Division-winning group, with their most recent move coming courtesy of three-team trade. The Clippers picked up free-agent shooter J.J. Redick and Suns marksman Jared Dudley in a deal between themselves, the Suns and Bucks. Although the Clips had to deal prized guard Eric Bledsoe to pick up the shooters, it’s a deal that keeps the Clips humming along. Other teams out West either made themselves better (in the case of the Wolves, who added Kevin Martin and re-signed Chase Budinger) or kept a key piece in place (such as the Grizzlies, who retained defensive ace Tony Allen).:

Smith’s chances of staying with Knicks improving?

As shooting guards like Redick, Martin and others have been snapped up on the free-agent market, the reigning Sixth Man of the Year, J.R. Smith, waits for an offer. Smith opted out of his contract to test the waters on a big payday, but according to the New York Daily News’ Frank Isola, Smith could decide to go back to New York if the market keeps playing out as it has:

J.R. Smith’s list of potential suitors continues to grow but the contracts signed by two free agent shooting guards on Tuesday increases the likelihood of Smith returning to the Knicks.

The Clippers agreed to acquire J.J. Redick in a sign-and-trade with the Milwaukee Bucks while Oklahoma City Thunder free agent Kevin Martin verbally agreed to a four-year, $28 million deal with the Minnesota Timberwolves. The maximum the Knicks can offer Smith, the NBA’s Sixth Man of the Year, is a four-year contract starting at approximately $5.5 million per season.

Smith has told close friends that if the money is comparable his preference would be to re-sign with the Knicks. Still, some of the teams that contacted Smith’s representatives have the ability to offer a deal approaching $30 million. The Pistons, Mavs, Rockets, Bucks and Bobcats have all expressed interest in Smith, who is coming off his best season.

With Redick and Martin setting the market for shooting guards, there is a sense that Smith’s free agency can reach a conclusion by the end of the week. The Knicks have made it known that they want their second leading scorer back and ideally they’d like to sign Smith to a two-year deal. But Smith, who came to the Knicks midway through the lockout season during a tumultuous stint in China, is looking to be rewarded for his performance and loyalty.

The fact that both Carmelo Anthony and Garden Chairman James Dolan are both in Smith’s corner is a factor to say the least. Dolan, according to a source, was briefed on the club’s free agent negotiations on Tuesday. Dolan has been more involved in the day-to-day operations of the basketball side since 2010 when he was front and center during the Knicks free agent presentation to LeBron James.

Report: Pistons make offer for Raptors’ Gay

When the Grizzlies traded Rudy Gay as part of a three-team deal with Memphis, Detroit and Toronto, the Grizz came out of the deal with Tayshaun Prince and Austin Daye. The Raptors ended up with Gay, who played 33 games for them and — on a points-per-game basis — finished as their top scorer. But apparently the Pistons originally wanted Gay in the first swap, so they’ve solicited the Raptors to try and get him again, writes Brian Windhorst of ESPN.com:

The Detroit Pistons were among the bidders for forward Rudy Gay when the Memphis Grizzlies made him available last season and they are once again going after him now that there’s been a management changeover in Toronto.

The Pistons have offered the Raptors the expiring contracts of Rodney Stuckey and Charlie Villanueva in an attempt to acquire Gay, league sources told ESPN.com.

Stuckey and Villanueva are both scheduled to make $8.5 million this season and Gay has two years and $37 million left on his contract. Gay averaged 19.5 points on 43 percent shooting in 33 games after a midseason trade sent him to Toronto.

Rockets trying to land J-Smoove and Dwight?

Our man David Aldridge touched on this overnight, but it seems that what Howard does in free agency may have a direct effect on what Hawks free agent Josh Smith does as well. USA Today’s Sam Amick reports on Smith, who has long been on the Houston Rockets’ radar. Houston is also actively pursuing Howard and is thought to have a good shot to land the All-Star center. And while some have reported Smith is a backup plan for Houston should it lose out on Howard, that may not be the case:

According to two people with knowledge of the situation, the Rockets’ Monday meeting with free agent forward Josh Smith in Los Angeles included a discussion about a possible partnership with him and his childhood friend from Atlanta in Howard.

Smith has long been known to be on the Rockets’ radar, but he is not viewed solely as a backup plan to Howard should he decide to sign elsewhere and the possibility remains of another superteam being created with Howard and Smith joining franchise centerpiece James Harden. The people spoke to USA TODAY Sports on the condition of anonymity because of the private nature of the talks.

There would be serious hurdles to this sort of deal, but the Rockets may be able to get it done if they could convince Smith’s former team, the Atlanta Hawks, to take part in a sign-and-trade that would clear the necessary salary cap space to sign both players.

To that end, a CBSSports.com report on Sunday indicated that the Rockets have been discussing possible trades involving center Omer Asik and point guard Jeremy Lin with other teams. Both players are scheduled to earn $8.3 million in each of the next two seasons, meaning they could possibly be moved as a way to free up the funds to bring Howard and Smith together.

Howard completed his free agency meetings on Tuesday by meeting with the Los Angeles Lakers. He met with the Rockets first on Sunday night, followed by Golden State and Atlanta on Monday and the Dallas Mavericks on Tuesday before the Lakers. Smith is also being targeted by the Detroit Pistons and is believed to have at least five suitors.

Suns-Clips trade spells trouble for Marshall

Kendall Marshall was the 13th overall pick of the 2012 Draft and the third point guard (behind Rookie of the Year winner Damian Lillard and the Pelicans’ Austin Rivers) off the board that night. However, he struggled to find minutes with the Suns and even had a nine-game stint in the NBA D-League. The Suns’ acquisition of Bledsoe from the Clippers in last night’s trade may only spell more bad news for the second-year guard, writes Bob Young of The Arizona Republic:

The Suns won’t say it, but we will.

The Kendall Marshall draft pick last season was a mistake.

Then again, maybe the Suns did say it by taking part in a three-team deal first reported by Yahoo! Sports to obtain a quick, athletic point guard in Eric Bledsoe and veteran small forward Caron Butler from the Los Angeles Clippers.

The Suns sent Jared Dudley to the Clippers, who once played in his hometown. The Milwaukee Bucks, the third-team in the deal, ship guard JJ Redick to the Clippers and get second-round draft picks in exchange.

This isn’t to say that Marshall, who was selected when Lance Blanks served as general manager, doesn’t have a place in the Suns future. It’s just that it’s probably as the team’s third point guard.

Twitter quick hits: On Korver, Gay, Hamilton, Copeland, Cavaliers and more

34 Comments

  1. qdqdqq says:

    knicks should trade stoudemire and maby get something good in return? stoudemire just doesnt fit in with the knicks, he would be much better off some place else.

  2. Gillsy says:

    The biggest question even after the first few days of free agency what OKC is going to do since hey have lost their sixth man, cause options are starting to dry up.

  3. J says:

    smith should stay good fit
    gay should have stayed with grizzlies…….go to Detroit maybe
    smith and d12 together?!?!?!? nba finals!!!! go for it
    trade marshall a team could use a PG like him

  4. AdG says:

    Knicks should start Smith at 2 spot if they get him back. Then teach him and Melo to run plays.

  5. lake says:

    Lakers missed the chance to sign korver but they have to sign Chris Copeland, resign Earl Clark, Trade Pau Gasol to Hawks for Josh Smith and Trade Nash & Artest for Kevin Love! Next trade Steve Blake and and future round pick for Rubio

    PG:Rubio
    SG:Kobe
    SF:Copeland/Clark
    PF:Love/Smith
    C:Dwight/Smith

    Every smart team wants future 2014 pick.

    • Shawn K says:

      That would never happen. a) Kevin Love for Nash and Metta will NEVER HAPPEN. When he is healthy, Love is a star!!! b)Ricky Rubio is Minnesota’s future PG!!!!! Trading him for Steve Blake and a draft pick?!!!! are you crazy??!!!!! These trade scenarios will NEVER happen!!! The only possible trade is MAYBE a sign and trade deal with Josh Smith for Pau Gasol. Those other trades are just crazy!!!!! It’ll never happen!!!

  6. mark says:

    Howard does not stay in LA cant handle spot light or being the blame for a coaching change and a loseing season injurd or not he doesnt want to be the blame for anything . Next subject cp3 doc rivers griffen deep bench I smell playoffs for years to come maybe even a ring or 2 when they start to play D LOOK OUT NBA LoB city coming in hot next subject eric Gordon really good when he is healthy and is motivated the issue is he’s not motivated and not healthy long enuff to be a factor pelicans trade him get back a C in return someone who is a project maybe cody zeller bobcats need scoring and maybe MJ can bring out the best in gordon and he can become a true star there then palican can start rivers he’s a 2 anyways they got holiday at PG that’s line up in NOLA is a better one then they got now next subject J smooth I can see him in Houston before I see DH there in a fantasy world I would love to see atl pick howard and resign smith with horford what a front line just lock up the back court with shooters good luck driving in the paint Teague is going to be a very good PG they need a shooting gaurd I’m done be back later take in what I think and comment

  7. J-Short37 says:

    If Howard stays in LA the Lakers need to consider doing a trade package with Detroit with Pau/MWP/Morris for Stucky and Villanuava

    • Shawn K says:

      I can see a trade like this happening, both Stuckey and Villanuava have expiring contracts. The Lakers could use the cap space in next years Free Agency. Plus unloading Pau, Metta and even Morris is a great thing for the Lakers!!!

    • Erik Hernandez says:

      That is the dumbest thing someone would do @erikhernandez44@yahoo.com

  8. Todd Smith says:

    I think that you all have to do some research! Chris Copeland is young and athletic, how many players can you say that about? A large percentage. He has proven to be a good fit in NYC, so yeah I would try and keep him because his minutes and role player situation work out well. That being said, Gordon for Gortat sounds and looks to good to happen. Also, Toronto does have a star player in Rudy Gay and I bet my next paycheck he is gone either this season or next. I think if Indy snags solid role players who can come in and play knowing they are off the bench guys unless somebody gets hurt, Indy can actually beat Miami. That’s another problem though. You go to the trouble of signing a guy who may be in the prime of his career like JR Smith who is coming off of career numbers he is going to want the ball, you would too if you were them.

  9. Mike U. says:

    Howard is a disappointment and continues to be so through the off season. He needs to get over himself and man up for once!

  10. Nick says:

    Smith is a ball hog. He kills ball movement even more than Anthony. Defense and ball movement wins championships and the Knicks at best are sporadic at both. Let JR go.

  11. Bob says:

    Spike Lee said it best…Knicks need to get younger

  12. Tim says:

    Elton brand is too old,we need a point guard and a big man that can score and rebound.

  13. 1.it’s good to see if j.smoove and d-howard in rockets but can someone explain me how they will do this?? you know, salary space?

    2.for cavs, kyrie’s back up?? why not nate robinson or aj.price? hehe really dont know too but i think those two are great players

    • Shawn K says:

      Robinson is looking for a “big contract” after a good season with the Chicago Bulls. Robinson can easily be worth anywhere from 6m-9m/year. Plus I think he’s done being a backup unless he has guaranteed minutes off the bench. I think the Cavaliers should sign Aaron Brooks or Patrick Beverly as Kyrie Irving’s backup.

  14. Shawn K says:

    I hope to god that Toronto doesn’t accept the offer from the Pistons. They FINALLY have another star to help build their roster and they’re accepting trade offers?! If I were Toronto, I wouldn’t accept, heck I wouldn’t even entertain offers for Gay because they just got him!! and with Lowry and DeRozan at the guard positions and a improving Valanciunas(not sure if I spelled that right), Toronto finally has a decent roster that could actually make the playoffs. They just got rid of Bargnani’s big contract(which was a necessity, he hasn’t played well in a while and is injured alot) so now they need to find a solid PF that can defend and rebound because Gay and DeRozan and even Lowry on occasions can score a good amount of points. I’d say they should try to get Josh Smith, But I don’t think the Raptors have the cap space needed, and I doubt Smith would consider the offer unless it was a near-max deal. I’m not sure who the Raptors should get to play PF full-time but I guess its going to be Amir Johnson until the Raptors get someone better. As a final thought, I’d like to see the Raptors sign undrafted prospect Jackie Carmichael. He’s a solid PF, a bit under-sized but he is incredibly athletic, he’s a good defender and rebounds consistently too. The only thing the Raptors would need to work on with him is his jump shot and knowing where his teammates are on offense. I think the Raptors would be a good pick for him. Just my opinion though.

  15. pokie says:

    Why does everyone keep saying Austin Rivers is a point guard?

  16. underdog says:

    Pelicans/Suns should push a trade for Gordon/Gortat… Suns dont need Gortat since they’re rebuilding and Gordon is uninspired in New Orleans and wants to play for the Suns

    • Shawn K says:

      The ONLY way I see this trade happening would have to be;

      Pelicans trade:
      SG-Eric Gordon
      PF/C-Jason Smith
      1-2nd round pick

      For

      Suns Trade:
      C-Marcin Gortat
      SG-Shannon Brown(or Wes Johnson)
      PG-Kendell Marshall(or Goran Dragic)
      2-1st round draft picks

      That is the only possible way I can even see the Pelicans looking at the offer. But I HIGHLY doubt that they will trade Gordon.

  17. gw chaff says:

    I DONT UNDERSTAND THE CLIPS TRADE TOO ANXIOUS TO TRADE BLED – SHOULD HAVE GOT MORE – THEY NOW NEED A BACKUP TO PAUL ( NOT JJ) AND A NO 3 FOR BUTLER. PLEASE EXPLAIN ?????

    • Shawn K says:

      Jared Dudley is technically a SF. Also, their draft pick, Reggie Bullock can play SF and they are trying to re-sign Barnes. Ive also heard rumors that they are looking at signing Earl Clarke.

  18. Shane Evans says:

    I hope Indiana can get copeland

  19. luisq694 says:

    Wonder how the Knicks would rotate Bargnani,Amare, Brand, and carmelo….they definitely need a back up point guard and there not addressing that need.. there just filling up that front line…

  20. Olaf says:

    if Indy sings Copeland it will be one solid backup center (Andersen, Pachilia, Kaman) away from champinship

  21. You Guys dont Understand says:

    i want cope and snith to come back PLzzzzzzzzzz

  22. Joey says:

    Knick fan here, hope we get Elton Brand, we need a solid big man. Amare is washed up, nothing left in the tank.

    • oli says:

      yeah Elton Brand is a young energetic player who will be a huge energy boost … he’s not washed up at all… smh

  23. yoloolol says:

    as a knick fan, I hope that new york resigns copeland, a good shooter and scorer. hate to see indiana get him.

    • Copeland is a very underrated player….with more minutes he can be an all-star caliber player

    • IM back bro says:

      You obviosuly arent a knick fan cause a blind man can see copeland is a disaster. THeir best chance of winning is getting stoudamire another 100$ million dollar contract and keeping chandler. Iman shumpert is a knee tearing guard who doesn’t have any offense. if you ask me the knicks will be this years version of the celtics. 32-52 record for knics this year I called it FIRST!!!

      • Samuel says:

        u r obviously a blind person what has stoudemire done but take pictures with his wife with no defensive or offensive help. Amare is a knee tearing bigman. shumpert just teared his knee once and chandler hasn’t had a good effect in the playoffs. he hasn’t helped at all. we obviously need Copeland cause honestly who is gonna back up melo in scoring once jr smith leaves. u r not a knicks fan and u need help.

      • I'm confused says:

        Even a blind man can add 32 + 52 = 84. Since when are there 84 games in a season? Surely you are the first and only one calling this because nobody’s that dumb. And your post makes no sense in terms of the Knicks’ chances of winning.