Morning Shootaround — June 30



VIDEO: Chris Bosh opts out of his contract with the Heat

NEWS OF THE MORNING
Bulls up first to talk with ‘Melo | Report: Heat’s Big 3 discuss future contracts | Rose won’t recruit ‘Melo to Chicago | Report: Bucks offer second-round pick for Kidd | Report: Jazz to match all offers for Hayward

No. 1: Report: Bulls up first to talk with ‘Melo; Suns planning pitch to him (as well as LeBron) — As we reported in this space yesterday, the Knicks remain confident they will be able to re-sign free agent Carmelo Anthony despite the advances of other teams this summer. That notion won’t keep other teams from taking a crack at landing the superstar scorer and according to ESPN.com’s Marc Stein, the Chicago Bulls will be up first to talk to Anthony.

The Phoenix Suns, writes Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports, are also planning to not only pitch to Anthony, but also to LeBron James in hopes of wooing both out West to a team that has oodles of cap space and young talent, too.

First, here’s Stein’s report on the Bulls and Anthony:

Carmelo Anthony is planning to meet with the Chicago Bulls in Chicago on the opening day of free agency after the NBA’s offseason market officially opens Tuesday at 12:01 a.m., according to sources familiar with Anthony’s plans.

Sources told ESPN.com that Anthony is in the process of arranging a trip to Chicago to meet with the Bulls, then intends to travel to Texas for Wednesday meetings with both the Houston Rockets and the Dallas Mavericks.

Sources say Anthony is likely to visit the Rockets first on Wednesday, followed by the Mavericks in the afternoon.

Anthony, who maintains an offseason home in Los Angeles, is also expected to meet with the Los Angeles Lakers face-to-face next week.

One source close to the process told ESPN.com’s Ramona Shelburne that Phil Jackson is planning to make a determined attempt to try to recruit his former Lakers center, Pau Gasol, to replace the freshly traded Tyson Chandler alongside Anthony on the Knicks’ front line, despite the fact New York is limited to offering Gasol less than $4 million for next season.

Sources told ESPN.com this week that the Knicks swung their trade with the Mavericks to send out Chandler and the out-of-favor Raymond Felton to bring back a clutch of veterans in return — headlined by point guard Jose Calderon – in their belief that Anthony would relish the prospect of playing with the Spaniard. Calderon has been a perimeter threat and a beloved teammate everywhere he’s played.

Sources insist that the Knicks feel far better about their chances than Jackson is letting on. No team can match the five years and $129 million that New York can provide if it wishes to offer a maximum contract to Anthony, and while Anthony is undoubtedly intrigued by the chance to team with Derrick Rose, Joakim Noah and coach Tom Thibodeau in Chicago, he also still loves the Madison Square Garden stage dearly.

And here’s Wojnarowski’s report about the Suns planning a pitch to this summer’s two biggest names:

Suns officials understand the bid will be something of a long shot, but are determined to get a meeting with James to convince him how the possibilities of two full max contracts, a roster stocked with talented, young players and the chance to pick the superstar free-agent partner of his choice ought to make Phoenix one of his most appealing suitors.

Phoenix is determined to emerge as a legitimate destination for James and Anthony, who have privately shared an affinity for playing with each other in the NBA. Salary-cap structures make it prohibitive for teams elsewhere to fit these two stars together without completely gutting a roster, but Phoenix’s general manager Ryan McDonough has constructed a far different reality to sell them in potential meetings next week, league sources told Yahoo Sports.

The Suns have $33.5 million in salary-cap space and could shed the next $10 million needed to sign James and Anthony to maximum contracts without unloading the young core of guards Eric Bledsoe and Goran Dragic and center Miles Plumlee that pushed the franchise to 48 victories in the Western Conference last season.


The Suns have three first-round draft picks in 2015, and the picks could help the shape the roster with deals for veteran players, or infuse more young talent – or both – based on whatever intrigues the best player on the planet.

For now, the Suns are like everyone else in the NBA, including Houston and Cleveland: hoping against hope James will pause before recommitting to a deal with the Heat and truly bring an open mind to free agency. So far, James’ representatives have been cautious on promising meetings with teams, and Heat president Pat Riley has been working on new deals with the reps for the four players who’ve opted-out of Miami – James, Chris Bosh, Dwyane Wade and Udonis Haslem – sources said.

The Suns are banking on James’ basketball acumen and business intelligence to see the roster, financial flexibility that could sustain the Suns’ success for years. Phoenix officials believe the best chance to get Anthony away from his preferred free-agent destinations – Chicago and Houston – will be to turn James’ attention toward the Suns, and get Anthony on board with his one true chance to play with James, sources said.

For now, the Suns wait with everyone else. They want a meeting on Tuesday, want a chance to tell a story to the planet’s best player. The message will be unmistakable: If LeBron James wants to play with the biggest co-star available in free agency – along with a supporting cast of playmakers in a warm climate – the Suns have a story to tell him.

***

No. 2: Report: Heat’s Big 3 starting to discuss contract futures — If you missed it over the weekend, our John Schuhmann has a great look at what it would take for the Miami Heat to keep their star trio of Dwyane Wade, Chris Bosh and LeBron James and add some firepower to the mix. That story might be some good reading for the Heat front-office types, too. According to ESPN.com’s Brian Windhorst, the trio have started talking about future contracts amongst themselves, which may provide the strongest indication that all three will be back in Miami next season:

After agreeing to all opt out of their contracts together, Miami Heat stars LeBron James, Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade have been discussing financial terms of new contracts among each other, sources told ESPN.com.

The talks between the three players is the strongest indication yet that James plans to re-sign with the Heat after he becomes a free agent on Tuesday. Unlike in 2010 when all three took nearly identical contracts, the discussions this time have included the possibility that James would draw the highest salary among the three, sources said.

James, 29, has never been the single highest-paid player on his team in his 11-year NBA career.

Under league rules, players are not allowed to negotiate new contracts with their teams until July 1. However, there is nothing preventing the players from working it out among themselves, and cutting up the Heat’s upcoming record $55 million in available cap space is believed to have been a major part of the discussion when Wade, James and Bosh held a meeting last week in Miami.

The trio of Heat stars working collectively have three general options on how to put together their deals that could affect how aggressive the team will be going after other free agents. The Heat’s front office, led by president Pat Riley and general manager Andy Elisburg, will consult but have different plans for all three contingencies, sources said.


VIDEO: The Starters discuss what might be next for Miami’s Big Three

***

No. 3: Rose won’t recruit ‘Melo, remains mum on Team USA play — The Bulls (as you can read in item No. 1) are planning to chat with Carmelo Anthony about joining them as a free agent and playing alongside former MVP Derrick Rose. But as has been Rose’s stance throughout his NBA career, the point guard says he won’t be making any pitches for Anthony to join Chicago. Rose is still recovering from the knee injury that ended his 2013-14 campaign after just 10 games and told Yahoo! Sports’ Marc J. Spears he’s unsure if he’ll participate in Team USA practices:

Rose told Yahoo Sports on Sunday that he doesn’t plan to recruit Anthony – or any free agent, for that matter – even though he likes Anthony’s game and thinks they can play alongside each other.

Rose’s reason is simple: He said it’s “not his job.”

“My thing is if they want to come, they can come,” Rose said.

“I love Melo’s game,” Rose said. “He’s a great player. Takes the game serious. He’s consistent. He shoots the ball great. I love his heart.

“I can play with anybody, no matter who it is. I believe I can play with anyone if they step on the court with me.”

Rose has played in only 10 total games the past two seasons and 50 the past three because of various injuries, including two major knee surgeries. He said he has been taking part in five-on-five scrimmages for a while and his rehabilitation is going well. But Rose also said he is uncertain if he will participate in USA Basketball’s training camp starting July 28 in Las Vegas.

“I still don’t know yet,” Rose told Yahoo Sports at the Drew Gooden Foundation Basketball Camp on Sunday. “If I’m feeling right and the time is [right], for sure I will go out there. My body is responding good, but you never know.

“Right now, I haven’t really thought about that. I am just worrying about just trying to get back every day and I’m really taking rehab one day at a time instead of trying to think about competing.”

USA Basketball chairman Jerry Colangelo is expected to begin reaching out to players in early July. USA Basketball will also have a training camp in Rose’s native Chicago from Aug. 14-15 and play Brazil in an exhibition game on Aug. 16 at the United Center. Rose last played in a game for the Bulls on Nov. 22 and last played in the United Center in Chicago on Nov. 18.

Rose said it would be fun to play for the U.S. in Chicago, but he’s more focused on his rehabilitation. He said his national team decision will be made between himself and his agent, B.J. Armstrong.

Rose has been playing five-on-five for about 45 days and Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau recently said Rose was increasing the intensity of his workouts. Rose is certain he will be in uniform for the Bulls’ opener.

“For sure. That’s not a concern,” Rose said. “I’m on a mission. I’m just trying to get better. I’m taking it day by day. I’m getting the best out of every day.”

Asked to grade the strength of his knee, Rose said, “I want it to be a surprise. I want people to see me. It’s going to be a surprise.”

***

No. 4: Report: Bucks offer second-round pick for Kidd — As a player in the NBA, current Nets coach Jason Kidd was traded three times. In each of those deals, a second-round pick of some sort was involved. Kidd finds himself (thanks to his own shady efforts) in the midst of another trade discussion — and this time, he could be swapped for only a second-round pick. According to ESPN.com’s Andy Katz, Kidd will become the new coach of Milwaukee if the Bucks agree to take Kidd off the Nets’ hands for a second-round pick. Either way, this bizarre story — which unfolded suddenly on Saturday night — will be resolved within the next 24 hours or so:

Jason Kidd will be the next head coach of the Milwaukee Bucks if the Brooklyn Nets agree to the Bucks’ terms of a 2015 second-round draft pick in exchange for Kidd, a source with direct knowledge told ESPN on Sunday.

The source said the Bucks offered a second-round pick, but the Nets wanted a 2015 first-round pick in exchange, a negotiating chip the Bucks originally dismissed.

“If the Nets agree then there will be a deal, if they don’t then [the Bucks] are comfortable moving on and there will be nothing further to talk about,” said the source. “The only thing (the Bucks) would give them is a second-round pick. They want a first. In the next 24 hours, there will either be a deal or there won’t be a deal.”

The source said the Bucks only talked to Kidd about being the coach, not any kind of administrative position running basketball operations. The source said the negotiation was supposed to be between the owners, not involving any basketball personnel, before the story was leaked out by the New York Post. But the source said the negotiations are now being handled by Bucks general manager John Hammond and Nets GM Billy King.

The source said Hammond and high-ranking Bucks officials David Morway and Dave Babcock are all safe and that their jobs are not in jeopardy if Kidd is hired as coach. The source said current Bucks coach Larry Drew has not talked to ownership during this process.

“If Jason accepts then they will work it out [with Drew],” said the source. “If the deal doesn’t happen, then there will be an issue with Larry.”

A league source told ESPNNewYork.com Saturday that Lionel Hollins has already emerged as “a very serious candidate” to become head coach of the Nets in the event Kidd does end up in Milwaukee.

Charles F. Gardner of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel backs up Katz’s story, and adds some other details, too:

No terms of the deal were available but Kidd reportedly wanted to be compensated in line with the five-year, $25 million deals recently given to Steve Kerr by the Golden State Warriors and Derek Fisher with the New York Knicks.

Kidd made his coaching debut with Brooklyn last season after signing a four-year, $10.5 million contract.

…There remains a chance the deal could fall through if compensation between the Bucks and Nets cannot be agreed upon, and reports are the Nets’ Russian owners are determined to get a first-round pick.

It’s clear the Nets owners, led by Mikhail Prokhorov, want to move on to other coaching candidates. Among those being considered, according to reports, is former Memphis coach Lionel Hollins, who was out of the NBA last season after being fired by the Grizzlies.

Several of Kidd’s players in Brooklyn stood strong behind him last season, including Paul Pierce and former Bucks guard Shaun Livingston.

If Kidd does land in Milwaukee, it wouldn’t be a surprise for Livingston to return to the Bucks. The 6-foot-7 Livingston, who emerged as a leader for the Nets last season under Kidd, is an unrestricted free agent.

***

No. 5: Report: Jazz to match any offer for Hayward — Utah Jazz forward Gordon Hayward has shown — if, at times, inconsistent — growth throughout his four seasons in the league. As a restricted free agent this summer, he’s expected to get offers from the likes of the Phoenix Suns, Boston Celtics and others. As Jody Genessy of the Deseret News reports, though, the Jazz are ready to match just about any offer a team will throw at Hayward to keep him in Salt Lake City. They also don’t want veteran Marvin Williams to leave, either:

The 6-foot-8 restricted free agent is expected to receive a significant contract offer, possibly upwards to a max deal, from the Phoenix Suns this coming week, according to sources.

Boston and Charlotte are two other teams whom the Jazz anticipate could throw large offers at Hayward.

However, the Jazz plan on matching any offers for Hayward and intend to keep the versatile wing player in the organization as a major cornerstone in this rebuilding era, according to sources.

Utah extended a qualifying offer to Hayward last week, giving the team the right to match any offer sheets that he might receive.

Jazz management has made it clear since the season ended that it intends to keep Hayward in Utah for a long time. Moments after drafting Australian point guard Dante Exum and Duke forward Rodney Hood on Thursday, Jazz general manager Dennis Lindsey described the likelihood of Hayward returning to be “very, very strong.”

Utah also hopes to re-sign the 6-foot-9 Williams, per sources. Williams played an appreciated role as a stretch-four forward last season and was considered to be a valuable asset and example in the locker room for a young Jazz team.

One high priority Utah has, according to a team source, is a big man who can provide shooting and veteran experience. The 28-year-old Williams could fit that need, but he’s also reportedly in demand elsewhere.

Possibilities in the non-superstar tier include the likes of Detroit big man Greg Monroe, Houston forward Chandler Parsons, Washington forward Trevor Ariza, Lakers power forward Pau Gasol and Spurs forward Boris Diaw, among others.

One thing the Jazz have going for them is financial flexibility.

Even with Utah center Derrick Favors‘ four-year, $49 million kicking in this fall, the Jazz only have a guaranteed payroll of $32 million for eight players for the 2014-15 season. And that includes the rookie salaries of Exum ($3.6 million) and Rodney Hood ($1.3 million).


VIDEO: Gordon Hayward talks with the Utah media during exit interviews

***

SOME RANDOM HEADLINES: The Spurs will make every attempt to bring back Patty Mills, Boris Diaw, Matt Bonner and the rest of their free agents … If Jason Kidd does end up leaving the Nets, should Brooklyn think about hiring Patrick Ewing? … Just like in the summer of 2010, the Raptors find themselves with an asset (Kyle Lowry) coveted league-wide … The Magic don’t plan to make a big splash in free agency … The Lakers gave Ryan Kelly a qualifying offer, but passed on giving one to Kent Bazemore … The Clippers’ first priority in free agency may be re-signing backup point guard Darren Collison

54 Comments

  1. John Lee says:

    Send Melo to the Clippers w/ Chris Paul, DeAndre and Blake and you can’t go wrong. Send Lebron to Houston, him Harden & Howard would be a strong force and Wade and Bosh should stay in Miami and look into getting a better team, Kyle Lowry and Love would be a good addition. My opinion..

  2. Jimmy says:

    Melo needs to do Melo, that’s just it. Houston can’t play defense they just score score score that’s why they get beat. And Rose will come back great he averaged over 20 points in the lockout season and even then he missed a few games so no.

  3. Lebron is a wuss!!! He wants a team full of all-stars to dominate, he doesn’t like COMPETITION. People don’t even try to compare him to Michael”TheKing”Jordan.

  4. IVAN says:

    Who will stay on the east, if Lebron and Melo move to the West? It is already huge gap between east and west, and NBA officials should consider some measures. Most of the western teams who finished under the line last season deserved to be in playoff, so this system is unfair. Why eastern teams are failing to keep quality players? Maybe, things will change a little bit with 2014 draft, but there is no guarantees that those young players will stay on the east more than few years.

  5. James McCormick says:

    Wow, that’s really terrible. How is this even possible.

  6. Chris says:

    Wow, this is crazy. How did it come to this.

  7. DROSE IS THE HORSE says:

    SOMEBODY PLEASE SACRIFICE HIM! HE IS LIKE A HORSE WITH ALL LEGS BROKEN, HE MUST BE PUT TO SLEEP RUSH!!!!!!

  8. edrik says:

    love would be a better surefire than melo for the rockets, harden and parsons can shoot all they want with two monster rebounders love and howard, forget about forcing it inside with howard and let it just come with 12 points per night is enough for howard. imagine 20 rebounds a piece for love and dwight in a game..

  9. nelson says:

    melo is a strait ball hog all he wants to do is get the ball in an iso and try and score he knows nothing about team work or a team system thats why he will never win he makes teams worse not better

  10. Trevor says:

    It doesn’t matter how many Superstars does the team have as long as they are not playing as a team and also if they keep on blaming each other every turnover or mistakes on the court they cannot win over the SPURS and thats the FACT…

    • Where were you? says:

      Last year? and the previous one? and the previous? and the previous? and the… you got the idea…

  11. Trevor says:

    They still have 1year to prepare and establish their roster, as long as DIAW, MILLS and BONNER re-sign to SPURS for sure 2014-2015 CHAMP will be definitely the SPURS again…

  12. Ball Is Life says:

    Melo + DRose + Chicago = A Champion

  13. Go Spurs says:

    If these guys really want to win a championship, they should just take less money and join the Spurs!

  14. just saying says:

    DROSE = D.O.N.E
    KOBE = D.O.N.E

  15. martinez661 says:

    so they pay this guy millions of dollars to warm the bench once in while and he still has the audacity to say that it’s not his job? a team player should do anything to get his team to win even recruiting. Hopefully this guy is done for good because he hasn’t done anything for his team and is being treated as a “superstar”.

    • charless702 says:

      Well he knows he’s as good as gone if they get Melo. Not to mention their two styles are not compatible, no matter what Rose says. Melo’s game isn’t compatible with anyone’s. A team just needs to do with Melo what the Sixers did with A.I.. Surround him with defense (the Bulls have that), a couple guys that can hit open 3s (they’d have to get a guy or two) and let Melo take a majority of the shots. You won’t win any championships but then again Melo isn’t going to win any to begin with.

  16. martinez661 says:

    The bulls are paying this guy (rose) millions of dollars to warm the bench once in while for the last two years and has the audacity to say that it’s not his job? Hopefully he’s done and won’t be treated as a “star” because he hasn’t done anything for the bulls.

  17. mo_27 says:

    I think if drose is healthy and Melo goes to the bulls they will basically have a team that could go to the finals. They will need a few more pieces but the main part of the plan is to get Melo.

  18. bodjee says:

    Melo is a better scorer but Hayward is a better player!

  19. Skerge says:

    Big three to the WARRIORS!!!! With Curry and Bogut, Iggy as the 6th man….

  20. Brandon says:

    The Clippers should pick up Gordon Hayward, he’s a perfect fit for that team

  21. stevee says:

    Haha..thats sad the heat have to add more “firepower” to their offense ..eventhough they got alreadyy three nba allstarsz.with a veryy good bench.haha..That justs explains to u why u shouldnt compare lebron with jordan kobe or any real all star. Kobe and jordan had okey teammates but nothing compared to what the heat have and they still managed to get rings..haha..think bout it

    • Javier says:

      Not true. The heat aside from Lebron have nobody as good as Scottie Pippen was for the Bulls. They also don’t have anyone who does what Shaq did for the Lakers. Both of those teams had a lot more support around their star players than the Heat do currently.

      • patch says:

        Shaq wasnt there the last two championships who are u gonna say supported kobe? Pau gasol lmao or andrew bynum who was hurt over n over dum lil nicca

  22. Abraham Ortega says:

    LeBron and Carmelo are going to the Phoenix Suns

  23. William says:

    I think Bosh just made a mistake. He’s not the interior presence that the Heat need. My guess is that James pushes to oust Bosh for a legit centre.

    • Dieter says:

      lol… you seriously think there’s a center available (or in the league) that can replace Bosh? I guess Aldridge or Griffin maybe could do better, but that’s it… Bosh is an amazing player, and there’s no way James would like a replacement for him. I hope Bosh leaves for Washington because that seems a great fit, but I think the chances of the big three not returning to the Heat are very small.

  24. BazedGod says:

    Whoever gets Bazemore will win the championship next year. I’m calling it. #BazedGod #Bazemore2015MVP #Kent

  25. AC says:

    Bulls not a bad team – but Anthony got more chances with the Rockets to try to win a champinship –

    Even now Rockets can win Bulls …

    Rose is gone,pity but real ….

  26. Kimmy says:

    Derick Rose does not sound really positive nor am I fully convinced that he is healthy. This is a barrier to the reason why Carmello Anthony should be hesitant to play in Chicago. Remember, he’s leaving to win a championship. Rose talks like Debbie Downer if you ask me. Go to Houston!

    • StupidTradeSarcasticRemark says:

      Why? Anthony wants to be the primary option. With Harden and Howard he won’t be. On the bulls with Rose out Anthomy becomes the top guy with a better and more aggressive center in Noah. Noah has been more of a dominant force on defense than Howard has been.

      • Dieter says:

        Melo ain’t going to Chicago… it’s too risky, betting on Rose to come back and have mvp like seasons again. I also really don’t like the combination of Harden and Melo. I’d think that Memphis would be a great fit for him, and why not Dallas or Indiana?

  27. i would like to see Danny Granger come to the Bulls, he fis in with the culture and will be less of headache than Melo

    PG: Derrick Rose (healthy and aggressive)
    SG: Jimmy Bulter
    SF: Danny Granger
    PF: Taj Gibson
    C: Joakim Noah

    that is all i would like to see

    • Dieter says:

      Yes, and I guess that starting five will leave enough money on the table for some veterans like Ariza, Diaw and Mo Williams.

  28. A plain fan says:

    Melo should hit Chicago.

    It is easier in the East than the West.
    The Bulls are an amazing defensive team with a lot of heart that needs more offense at times, sometimes on on one offense. Could their be a better mix?
    If Rose is healthy, having Melo there takes that one on one pressure off of him and he can (should) change his game from those dangerous crazy drives to breaking down offineses and getting clean shots for his team.

    Without Rose, the Bulls + Melo are an instant conender in the East. With Rose, they may be the favories even if the Big three return to Miami.

  29. GL says:

    Rose won’t recruit and won’t play when healthy, what’s the point of going to Chicago. I hope Noah blast this so called “leader” for being soft.

    • Of course Rose won’t recruit. Would you??

      If you ask me this would be a realistic scenario: he might help to get someone in and this person might be his exit in the future……Just think about it, Rose helps recruiting Melo and suddenly Melo is the man and Rose is still struggling with injuries or a rusty game…..uhm who do you think will be transfermarket meat….Rose or Melo??

      I guess lots of us saw what did happen in Indiana this year with Dany Granger. New sherrif in town so old one got to go!

      No mercy when it comes to winning!

      • DaChamp33 says:

        Rose and Melo are not the same player that Granger and Paul George are. In todays NBA you need more than 1 star Rose gets that he wants Melo, just probably feels like he can’t tell Melo anything because he hasn’t played in 2 years. Melo would fit great with the bulls if he buys in on the defensive side. IMO

  30. Jordan hill blatche and gortat says:

    How come everybody keeps doing the budget like Miami cannot go over salary cap…. Mickey and Riley already stated he would bee willing… yet you did good job at showing what heat have to work with, and state that we can offer a free agent 10 mill a year… No no no, we can go over salary cap, and to land a few free agents that are worth it, why not, and talk about max contact to LeBron set at 20m??? Can go over and pay luxury on that too get him back… in summary at 2.50 per dollar for repeat defender,,, Mickey who cares sign who we need and pay the luxury, is a luxury look up luxury definition, no one needs a ferrari, but luxury of LeBron driving is worth luxury