Free-Agent Roundup: July 4

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From NBA.com staff reports

Like most folks in the U.S. today in regards to their jobs, Dwight Howard is taking July Fourth off to enjoy the holiday (and continue pondering where he’ll sign as a free agent). Dwight’s decision remains the No. 1 domino yet to fall in free agency, but each day, a couple of smaller ones continue to fall. Wednesday was no different as we saw Manu Ginobili go the Chris Paul route in two ways: he’s staying with his own team and he broke the news of the move via Twitter. Wonder if Howard will do the same thing? Kyle Korver is sticking with the Hawks for another four years while O.J. Mayo has decided the land of bratwurst and beer is for him as he’s reportedly headed to the Bucks. We’re not expecting a lot of free-agency moves today with it being a holiday and all, but here’s the latest overnight buzz on what may happen soon:

Report: Kings won’t match Evans’ offer sheet from Pelicans

Apparently, Tyreke Evans is going to get his wish.

The former Rookie of the Year winning guard who wanted a change of scenery is all-but certain to go to New Orleans as Sacramento is ready to let him take the $44 million offer sheet from the Pelicans without matching it. Instead, the Kings are trying to work out a sign-and-trade deal with the Pelicans that would send Greivis Vasquez and Robin Lopez to California’s capital city. Ailene Voisin of The Sacramento Bee has more:

The Kings will not match the four-year, $44 million offer sheet that Tyreke Evans has agreed to sign with the New Orleans Pelicans. According to sources close to the situation, the new Kings management group instead is hoping to close Thursday on a sign-and-trade agreement involving Pelicans point guard Greivis Vasquez and backup center Robin Lopez.

No deals can be finalized until July 10.

Because Evans, the 2009-10 Rookie of the Year, is a restricted free agent, the Kings have the right to match any offer he receives in the open market. However, team officials reportedly believe the offer is excessive and would damage the team’s long-term salary cap flexibility. They pulled their four-year, $52 million offer to free agent Andre Iguodala Tuesday when the Denver Nuggets swingman refused to make a firm commitment.

Evans’ future with the Kings became less certain when the club selected Kansas shooting guard Ben McLemore last Thursday in the NBA Draft. Evans, who was shifted from point guard to small forward, and most recently, shooting guard, averaged 15.2 points, 4.4 rebounds and 3.5 assists last season.

Smith back in fold with Knicks

The reigning Sixth Man of the Year, J.R. Smith, is apparently off the open market.

The venerable Frank Isola of the New York Daily News broke the news today that Smith and the Knicks have agreed to a four-year deal, which was later confirmed by both the New York Times, the New York Post and other outlets.

Smith, who was the Knicks’ second-leading scorer a season ago, closed in on a deal with New York yesterday — so says Smith’s father, Earl. New York reportedly gave him a four-year, $24.7 million deal, which Marc Berman of the New York Post details, most of which come almost exclusively from the elder Smith:

The Knicks and Smith were “discussing’’ contract terms last night after none of the current offers on the table bowled Smith over, according to an NBA source.

But Earl Smith, J.R. Smith’s father, made it clear to The Post Smith still could change his mind if a new whopping offer comes down the pike tomorrow. That seems unlikely at this point.

Earl Smith also said any deal can’t be finalized today because the lawyers won’t be available on the July 4 holiday.

“I’m a diehard Knick fan, but I want to see my son get justice,’’ Earl Smith said last night. “We know the Knicks only have so much money because of early-Bird rights. But if some team offers a crazy amount of money, like $10 million per, he’ll probably go there. We’ll see what happens. He’s not signing yet.’’

Two of his suitors, the Rockets and Mavericks, are waiting to see if they will land Dwight Howard before making an offer for Smith tomorrow. The Rockets were considering a four-year package for Smith. There is no state income tax in Texas.

Earl Smith said another team’s offer has to be significantly higher than what the Knicks can offer. That is because Smith is sincere in wanting to stay in his hometown. He also wants to play with his brother, point guard Chris Smith, who will be on the Knicks summer league team and assuredly be given a roster spot if he shows no ill effects from left knee surgery. Chris Smith changed agents late this season, going with J.R.’s agent, Leon Rose, as part of an unofficial package deal.

Milwaukee had Smith high on its list, but yesterday instead signed shooting guard O.J. Mayo. The Bucks got rebuffed by Kyle Korver and might be the team that extended Smith an offer that wasn’t spellbinding.

The Pistons, who are in the hunt for Andre Iguodala and Josh Smith, showed minimal interest as did Charlotte and Phoenix.

Bobcats continue to court Jefferson

After Howard and injured-but-talented ex-Sixers center Andrew Bynum, former Jazz center Al Jefferson may be the most offensively talented center on the free-agent market. At different times last season, the Bobcats trotted out Byron Mullens, Brendan Haywood, Josh McRoberts and others as their starting center as Charlotte struggled through yet another NBA campaign. It’s understandable, then, that Charlotte remains hot on Jefferson’s trail, tweets Chris Broussard of ESPN.com:

Pistons trying to deal for Rondo?

A day after reports surfaced of the Pistons trying to pull off a trade with the Raptors for Rudy Gay, another rumor is circulating that Detroit is after Boston point guard Rajon Rondo, tweets Alex Kennedy of HoopsWorld.com:

Report: Bulls’ Rose pushing for Blazers’ Aldridge?

If you missed Derrick Rose‘s interview with BullsTV that dropped yesterday, do yourself a quick favor and watch it. Rose provides some great insight into why he was so rarely seen last season and says that even after all this time recovering from his knee injury, he still has work to do to be ready for 2013-14.

The Chicago Tribune‘s K.C. Johnson wrote about the interview and particularly the relationship Rose shares with coach Tom Thibodeau. But check out the following interesting nugget in Johnson’s story about how Rose has been pushing to get a certain All-Star big man from Portland to the Windy City:

And sources said the Bulls continue to rebuff attempts by the shared agency of Rose and LaMarcus Aldridge to bring the Trail Blazers’ All-Star forward to Chicago. Sources said the Bulls have been unwilling to discuss a deal of Joakim Noah and Jimmy Butler for Aldridge.

Twitter quick hits: On Prigioni, Evans, Copeland, Clark and more

30 Comments

  1. Johnny says:

    Heres a deal for you. Josh Smith on a sign and Trade to Miami for Chris Bosh and Rashard Lewis or others. Josh Smith won’t get a max contract but still big enough money and straight into a championship team where he will become apart of the big three straight away. Chris Bosh gets to be the top dog again on a team and Miami get a stronger player around the basket who can compete better with Indiana in the 2014 conference finals.

  2. J says:

    tyreke good move pelicans are gonna be great
    smith stay with knicks
    good job bucks replacing (soon to probably be gone) monta ellis with oj mayo
    big al to charlotte I don’t like it
    rondo don’t go to pistons
    bulls to get Aldridge trade boozer and Gibson that’ll work
    free agency is awesome I love it every year!!!

  3. Kevin says:

    Honestly, the Knicks should be keeping Copeland rather than Martin. Martin could defend but he fouls too often too quickly, and Copeland is a OK defender, not the best but a lethal 3-point shooter. He helped in moments of crisis and could rack up points pretty quickly and efficiently as well. Please Knicks, resign Copeland!

    • dqqdqqs says:

      I wouldnt say that copeland is an ok defender, he cant rebound and he fouls quickly thats why woodson didnt have him on the floor as much, but he will learn, woodson is a good coach, but his offense is very good, and I agree, they should resign copeland, but they will have a hard time matching other teams offers since they resigned prigioni.

    • Shawn K says:

      That game where Carmelo was injured(not sure which game it was), Chris Copleand showed he can be a starting quality player(if not, 6th man) when he scored (I believe it was) 24 points and had decent stats all around. He is a quality player. I’m questioning whether the Knicks can afford keeping him since they extended Prigioni, and gave Smith a decent contract extension. Copeland can probably be worth anywhere from 3m/year – 4-5m/year(some teams might pay more, but I doubt it) and I’m not sure if the Knicks can afford that due to the need of frontcourt depth to back up Stoudemire and Chandler. They traded Novak, Camby and Richardson for Bargnani(talk about killing your SF depth). And while Bargnani can play either PF so C, they need someone who can defend on a consistent bases(even though Chandler is a defensive machine). Bargnani will score at a decent rate off the bench(unless they start him over Stoudemire, which I can see the Knicks doing), so they need someone to take the load off Chandler, maybe someone like Jermaine O’Neal, Johan Petro. Or maybe they can luck out and get Chris Kaman, he is still a solid center and I think he would flourish as a back up center!!.

      I think the Knicks starting line-up will be;

      PG- Raymond Felton
      SG- Iman Shumpert
      SF- Carmelo Anthony
      PF- Andrea Bargnani
      C- Tyson Chandler

      Key reserves; J.R Smith, Amare Stoudemire, Pablo Prigioni, Tim Hardaway jr.

      The Knicks will probably have a similar season as this past season. 2nd or 3rd seed(if not worse), make it to the conference semi-finals and lose to another team. Just my predictions though.

  4. Vlad says:

    The KIngs don’t need Robin Lopez
    They should try to get Eric Gordon and G.V
    From Tyreke and Marcus Thornton!!!
    So it would be
    PG- Greivis Vasquez
    SG- Eric Gordon
    SF-John Salmons
    PF-Jason Thompson
    C- DeMarcus Cousins
    And Ben McLemore or Isiah Thomas can be 6th Man

  5. Aces-215 says:

    Ironic Rose wants LA since they traded him in a draft day deal in the first place.

  6. Michael McBride says:

    NOOOOOOOOO come on wtf!!! this new management are killing me already first the tried to get iggy, then let Evans GO
    =(
    i live in sacramento, man they can just go to seattle now what a disappointment.

  7. Joey canastraro says:

    Howard to Houston ..

  8. Valensinator says:

    First off Dean, I agree almost 100%. But the fact is, Lopez and Vasquez are going into a sign and trade deal with SAC town. Davis is not a center! He doesn’t have the size for a center. PF-yes C-no! It would be like Bosh all over again! They need to get someone who is at least 7 ft and can last for at least 25 min per game. Also, now that I think about it Evans at SF is what ruined his rep in SAC. He might be able to pull off 6th man off the year playing behind Jrue and Eric

  9. streetballer says:

    dont want jefferson in utah anyway

  10. Dean says:

    Wow first I was a little disappointed when the Pelicans traded Noel, but now it’s all coming together. This teams looks DEEP.
    Starting lineuo

    PG-Holiday
    SG-Gordon
    SF-Evans
    PF-Davis
    C-Lopez

    But I also think they could play Aminu as PF and maybe throw Davis at C. Also just have to say I’m happy Tyreke got out of Sacramento, time to show everyone why he won rookie of the year and threw up 20 ppg in his first year. The Kings held him back but it’s clear he’s wanted in NO.

    • Shawn K says:

      They traded Lopez to Portland in the Evans deal. But that would be a decent line-up. I think its gonna be;

      PG-Jrue Holiday
      SG-Eric Gordon
      SF-Tyreke Evans
      PF-Ryan Anderson
      C-Anthony Davis

      Key reserves: Aminu, Rivers, Smith.

      The Pelicans are set to have a decent season. I’m guessing (since it is a re-vamped roster that needs time to grow as a team and learn to play together) they end up being the 9th see to maybe grabbing the 8th or 7th seed and maybe making the playoffs. This year has been a great offseason for the Pelicans. Trade to bring in a star PG like Jrue Holiday, trade Lopez(to Portland) and Vasquez to Sacramento to get a (possible) star in Tyreke Evans. And they already had stars Anthony Davis and Eric Gordon. It’s going to be an interesting few years to come for the Pelicans.

      On a completely different topic,

      Has anyone heard rumors of an extension to give Seattle and another city NBA teams? I’ve been wondering since David Stern said the board will look over a “possible” this offseason.

  11. 1. evans in pelicans is nice
    2.for al jefferson he can help bobcats for sure with walker and henderson, or mavs will be nice for him too, but the best for him is to go lakers if howard will no stay
    3.rose and aldrige teaming up? why not if they can make it happen but its hard to decide because butler is becoming a great defensive player and noah put all his effort last season.
    4.i dont think rondo will leave the celtics
    5. earl clark should keep by the lakers he is good, i saw him first in a magic uniform and i know he has a chance to be great, but if they didn’t keep him, he will fit in cavs, and i heard cavs is looking for backup pg for irving?? why not billups?

  12. IF the Pelicans use Tyreke Evans properly, they have picked up an excellent player. Evans can score and distribute, and has good size and strength.

    What he is not, is a SF. Evans can play the 1 or 2, but NOT small forward. His best role would be the first guard off the bench, spelling Holiday or Gordon…

  13. josh says:

    I think al jefferson would be a good fit for the bobcats. imagine this, pg)walker
    sg) henderson
    sf) Kidd-Gilchrist
    pf) Jefferson
    C) Byimbio

    • Shawn K says:

      I think the Bobcats will play this line-up:

      PG-Kemba Walker
      SG-Gerald Henderson(unless they get a better SG)
      SF-Michael Kidd-Gilchrist
      PF-Tyrus Thomas(or Cody Zeller)
      C-Al Jefferson

      Key Reserves: Ben Gordon, Ramon Sessions, and Cody Zeller(if they do not start him)

      I think the Bobcats should try and sign(not all, just suggestions on who they should target, and im not listing PG’s because I believe they’re good at that position):

      SG- Monta Ellis, Xavier Henry, Daequan Cook, Keith Bogans.
      SF-Terrence Williams, Alan Anderson, Corey Brewer, Carlos Delfino.
      PF-Carl Landry, Jon Leuer, Kenyon Martin, Paul Millisap (doubt they’ll want Jefferson/Millisap), Josh Smith.
      C-Chris Anderson, Brandon Wright, Jermaine O’Neal.

      That’s who I think the Bobcats should go after. I’m not a Bobcats fan(I don’t hate them) but I think to have an ok season(if depending on who they sign) they should target those players to buff their roster. And with another Dwight-mare occurring, a team could swoop in and sign Josh Smith.

  14. Soul says:

    Hello to all N.Y.C. fans what about defense don’t you think we need defense of players, now I like JR smith but
    He is what he is an that is inconsistent, so why not go with younger players that can play defense you save money and develop
    The Knicks are in need of *big men center* and a (younger point guard) -power forward- [ shooting guard] that can shoot around 50/48 percent the bottom line is the Knicks wasted there time and money on JR smith the Knicks organization need to stop trying to win now and build from younger talent…

  15. Valensinator says:

    These are my ideas:
    -Evans with fit well in NO with a lineup of Holiday, Gordon, EVANS, Davis, and I hope the pelicans are in the market for a good big man.
    -Jefferson should go to the Mavs, NOT THE CATS!!! He’d be alongside Dirk. His second choice should be losing about 5m on his contract to make a run with NO.
    -JR deserves 5m!!! HE’S A BACK UP!!!
    -Pistons could get rondo with a trade involving B.Kinight or R.Stucky with G.Monroe! Gay is out of the pic after joining the Raptors. I think he wants to build on HIS team.
    -Aldridge will try his best to join Rose and Noah. I agree, if the Bulls want him they have to give up Boozer and Deng. Wes Matthews might be in the deal as well but only to make the cap space work. (A sing-and-trade deal might happen including Nate Robinson)
    -And NYK won’t be able to trade Stoudemire! They will have to buy him out! 20m for him is too much for someone to agree. If he was 5 years younger and got injured 20% less I could see a trade happening.

  16. Valensinator says:

    If possible, the knicks should try to buy out stoudemire to save some cap space. Now for JR Smith, i agree he doesn’t deserve 10m a year! Especially for a back up! I don’t know who spends NYK’s money but they should be fired!!!

  17. Gee says:

    Trade amare ? But before ball hog Melo got there Stat brought excitiment and hope back to the garden.. By no chance I’m a Knicks fans,actually hate them.. But stat help court Melo to The apple.. More minutes with HogMelo on the bench, I mean Carmelo means more touches for stat and them you’ll see if hes done or not

  18. Shawn K says:

    To quickly run through these topics:
    -I’m happy to see Tyreke Evans FINALLY get out of Sacramento. That team wasn’t a good fit for him.
    -Jefferson shouldn’t sign with the Bobcats unless he’s planning on losing for the next 4 seasons, he should wait for the Mavs or another team.
    -J.R Smiths’ dad sounds “a little out there” if he thinks any team will offer Smith a 10m/year deal. At best, he is a 7-8m/year.
    -Pistons trade for Rondo and Gay…ya right. The pistons don’t have enough talent or pick to get both of them.
    -Aldridge to the Bulls, I can see that but the only way I see the Blazers accepting a deal for him would have to be Carlos Boozer and probably Luol Deng for Aldridge and probably Wes Matthews or someone else.
    -and to bring up the Knicks, as many people have said, the Knicks should trade away Stoudemire and his 18m/year contract. Stoudemire hasn’t don’t much for the Knicks other than break his hand in last years playoffs. And him and Carmelo don’t play together because they both need to be “the guy” in New York to help the team win. I think the trade should be Stoudemire for either a decent replacement PF, a draft pick, or a deal that will leave the Knicks with a few expiring contracts so they can either wait until Free Agency next year, or just keep them as reserves. the Knicks SHOULD try to trade away Stoudemire for little or nothing and ( if they have enough cap-space) try to pursue Josh Smith or another good PF in this years Free Agency.

    Just my opinions. Anyone agree?

  19. nyckid says:

    Jr smith is our six man are you crazy he deserve the money we are lucky too keep him

  20. hopeman1 says:

    10

  21. hopeman1 says:

    I’m a diehard Knick fan, but I want to see my son get justice- sorry but smith is not a 1m/year player. it’s not justice when it’s imposture

  22. asasaa says:

    trade stoudemire, no need for him in new york,