Posts Tagged ‘Chris Broussard’

Report: Magic, Nets Still Talking?





HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS – It’s still alive, the Brooklyn Nets’ dream of a Big 3 of their very own.

As long as they can continue the conversation with the Orlando Magic about a potential Dwight Howard trade, the Nets have hope that their master plan of Howard, Deron Williams and Joe Johnson joining forces is a possibility.

Never mind that only Johnson is all-but guaranteed to be in a Nets uniform as of this moment. Williams has not publicly made a decision about his future after Monday meetings with both the Nets and Mavericks.

But ESPN The Magazine’s Chris Broussard is reporting that there is still a chance the Nets can acquire Howard via trade, provided the Magic acquiesce to his trade demand and work out the details with the Nets:

The Nets and the Orlando Magic are discussing a trade that would send Howard to the Nets for Brook Lopez, Kris Humphries, MarShon Brooks and the Nets’ first-round picks in 2013, 2015 and 2017, sources said. Lopez and Humphries, who are both free agents, would go to Orlando in sign-and-trade deals.

The move would be the Nets’ second blockbuster trade this week and give them a big three of Howard, Deron Williams and Joe Johnson that could rival the NBA champion Miami Heat’s heralded trio of LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh.

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Del Negro Firmly On Hot Seat





HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS – The last time we heard about some coach “losing his team”, Mike D’Antoni was out of a job a few days later in New York.

So if Clippers coach Vinny Del Negro is a feeling a little uneasy this morning after hearing about this ESPN report from Chris Broussard that he has indeed “lost his team,” we should all understand his plight:

With the Los Angeles Clippers in free fall, tensions are high in the club’s locker room, most notably in the relationship between coach Vinny Del Negro and his players, according to several sources close to the situation.

“Vinny has lost the team,” one source said. “They don’t want to play hard for him.”

With the Clippers having lost 11 of their past 18 games to turn this once-promising season into a mess, Del Negro’s job security would certainly seem to be in jeopardy. As it is, Del Negro is in the final guaranteed season of his contract. The Clippers hold a team option for next season.

Most of the players, according to sources, believe it’s time for a change. They cite the uncertainty of Del Negro’s rotation as a major problem. With the front office adding several players to the roster throughout this shortened season — Reggie Evans, Kenyon Martin, Bobby Simmons and Nick Young — plus Eric Bledsoe‘s return from injury in February, players’ minutes have fluctuated from game to game.

We went through plenty of this yesterday, highlighting the fact that the Clippers were at the crossroads of their season. But that was before the Clippers got sideswiped in New Orleans, losing to the Hornets in Chris Paul‘s return trip to the Big Easy that turned into the Big Ugly.

It’s hard to see anything saving Del Negro’s skin if the Clippers’ season bottoms all the way out. We’re talking about a coach who is working on his second stint with one of the league’s elite point guards (he had Derrick Rose in Chicago, before the Bulls took off under Tom Thibodeau) and couldn’t make that work.

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Magic Making Moves To Keep Howard?





HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS – If Dwight Howard is indeed planning on leaving Orlando for greener pastures, the Orlando Magic don’t plan on making it easy for him to leave.

The Magic, with just a couple of weeks left to make a trade that might convince the free-agent-to-be Howard to stay, are reportedly making the moves necessary to convince the league’s best big man that he can reach all of his goals in a Magic uniform.

Instead of pursuing deals for Howard, ESPN the Magazine’s Chris Broussard is reporting that they are pursuing deals to surround Howard with the sort of talent (Golden State’s Monta Ellis) to compete with the Heat and Bulls for the top spot in the Eastern Conference:

Howard has long mentioned Ellis, who is the seventh leading scorer in the league with a 22.2 points average, as someone he would love to play with.

Golden State is willing to listen to the Magic about a potential trade for its shooting guard, but there is little on Orlando’s roster that appeals to the Warriors, according to sources.

Thus, the sides are not close to having the parameters of a deal in place. Instead, Orlando will begin looking for other clubs to get involved in a three-or four-team deal that would satisfy the Warriors and bring Ellis to Orlando.

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New Twists In The Chase For CP3

– For the latest updates check out: NBA.com’s Free Agent Tracker

HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS – Go to sleep if you want to. Just don’t be angry when you wake up and everything you knew to be true about the Chris Paul sweepstakes has changed.

With the list of teams in pursuit of the superstar point guard changing literally by the hour, no rumor is safe. And whatever you read yesterday, no matter how intriguing it might have been, probably can’t compare to the latest.

Our very own David Aldridge of TNT provided the latest update late last night, identifying the Lakers as one of the team that remain in advance discussions with the New Orleans Hornets about a potential deal while the New York Knicks are watching this saga play out without any real shot at landing Paul.

The other contenders, the Los Angeles Clippers, Golden State Warriors and Boston Celtics, are all chest-deep in the chase as well, per Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports. And the potential packages being prepared by said teams are rather intriguing:

The Clippers would have to include 23-year-old restricted free-agent center DeAndre Jordan in a package to get Paul, along with forward Al-Farouq Aminu, guard Eric Bledsoe and the 2012 first-round pick they acquired from the Minnesota Timberwolves.

The Clippers are more attractive to Paul than the Warriors or Boston Celtics, because of the chance to be paired with Griffin and Gordon. Golden State has been aggressive in its pursuit of Chandler independent of Paul, but the Warriors don’t have as appealing a supporting cast for Paul. The Warriors’ offer for Paul is centered around Stephen Curry and rookie guard Klay Thompson.

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Report: Lakers Hunting Big Fish

– For the latest updates check out: NBA.com’s Free Agent Tracker

HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS – Well, that didn’t take long.

Just hours after rumblings that Andrew Bynum could be used as bait to try to lure either Chris Paul or Dwight Howard to Los Angeles in a blockbuster trade, there comes even more fire from ESPN The Magazine‘s Chris Broussard.

Broussard is reporting that the Lakers aren’t just trying to get one of the superstars to join Kobe Bryant but both of them, a move that would send shockwaves around the basketball world were they to pull it off (seeing as how it’s extremely difficult to pull off one blockbuster deal, let alone two simultaneously). Now before you go assuming that this is just another preseason rumor being thrown up in the air, you need to read the details of the report to see where this smoke is coming from.

Everyone on the Lakers’ roster not named Bryant is tradeable, per Broussard, and that includes Bynum, All-Star forward Pau Gasol and reigning Sixth Man of the Year Award-winner Lamar Odom. While the idea of another super team, this time on the opposite coast, surely bothers the purists among us, it appears that this is where we are right now in the league:

While Paul’s first choice is to join buddies Carmelo Anthony and Amar’e Stoudemire on the New York Knicks, he would sign a long-term contract to stay with the Lakers, according to a source with knowledge of Paul’s thinking. And Howard’s fondness for Los Angeles is well-known, leaving no doubt that he would commit to the Lakers long-term.

Sources say Paul and Howard have had several conversations with each other about the possibility of playing together on various teams.

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Much Ado About The Amnesty Rule …

– For labor updates, follow: @daldridgetnt | @AschNBA

HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS – Rarely have so few words received so much scrutiny.

But if we didn’t know any better, the amnesty provision in the NBA’s new labor proposal (and that’s all it remains at this point, until the untangling process is complete) would appear to be the most important piece of the pending collective bargaining agreement.

It seems strange that something that will be utilized by such a small number of teams would be the focus of everyone’s attention. Yet when you realize the names that could potentially be impacted by the rule — Brandon Roy, Rashard Lewis, Baron Davis, Richard Jefferson, Mehmet Okur, Gilbert Arenas and several others — the intense examination of how the rule works makes much more sense.

Folks in Portland have already singled out Roy as one of the certain casualties of the amnesty rule, with John Canzano of the Oregonian providing the background for how and why it will go down:

The whisper at One Center Court is that Trail Blazers owner Paul Allen won’t bother to take one last look at Brandon Roy before he goes amnesty clause on the guy who won all those games for him.

Here’s hoping Allen does. And that the longest look is into Roy’s eyes.

“Brandon’s out,” a league executive told me Monday. “Don’t know the exact details, but everyone around the league knows it’s way, way done. Paul and Bert (Kolde) are calling the shots on this one.”

While the amnesty provision seems like the hot topic of the day, there are other items in the tentative labor agreement, outlined in a letter from Billy Hunter to the players, a copy of which was obtained by SI.com‘s Sam Amick, that require more attention.

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Labor Talks: Our Own Black Friday

– For labor updates, follow: @daldridgetnt | @AschNBA

HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS – The biggest shopping day of the year holds new meaning for those of us that choose to sit out this annual stampede on discounts across the country.

This is Black Friday in the NBA as well, the day the owners and players get back to the task of trying to save the 2011-12 season and finally end the lockout in time for us to celebrate with some games on Christmas.

We appreciate the way both sides have gone about their business this time around, quietly resuming talks instead of using the cameras to send their messages back and forth.

Of course, the tenor changes today with union president Derek Fisher reportedly joining the fray in New York with the clock ticking on the aforementioned Christmas Day start to a 66-game regular season, per Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports:

After deliberating for 24 hours, Players Association president Derek Fisher flew to New York on Thursday night to prepare for Friday’s labor settlement meeting with the NBA, a league source told Yahoo! Sports.

His appearance in this week’s negotiations – along with that of several other key Players Association officials – figures to run the risk of validating the league’s charges that the disbanding of the union was a “sham” negotiating tactic. Nevertheless, the belief that the end of the five-month lockout is within reach this weekend inspired Fisher to make the risky move to join the talks.

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Labor Talks: Bleak Outlook Ahead

– For labor updates, follow: @daldridgetnt | @AschNBA

HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS – You knew it was strictly a matter of time before these things began percolating again, the much-feared exodus of NBA players to overseas playing options during the lockout.

The only semi-surprising part of this latest wave is the names of the players involved.

Heat star Dwayne Wade has finally added his name to the list of players weighing the merits of an international excursion while this process plays itself out:

“I told my agent to just take a peek,” Wade said in an interview with The Associated Press. “It’s time. There’s a possibility that we’re not going to have a season. We’ve got to see what’s out there, what the possibilities are. I want to play competitive basketball this year. I’ve missed a year of basketball in my life before. I’m not trying to miss another. I don’t have too many years of basketball left.”

Word came a little later from SI.com’s Sam Amick that Kevin Durant‘s agent, Aaron Goodwin, is in discussions with a team in Germany (one that would allow him the flexibility to return to the states if and whenever an abbreviated NBA season begins), one of several options, about the Thunder star potentially making the trek for a temporary stint:

“We’re just discussing it,” Goodwin said. “We’re in discussions and it’s definitely a consideration, but we’re not in the final stages.”

Disturbing news?

Sure.

No one want to see some mass exodus of NBA stars at such a crucial time in these labor talks, and despite all of the legal proceedings going on around the country on behalf of both sides, we very much consider this an ongoing situation.

But we agree with most optimistic fringe in the belief that there is more than enough time on the calendar to turn this thing around and salvage some sort of an abbreviated season.

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Labor Talks: Time To Make A Move

– For labor updates, follow: @daldridgetnt | @AschNBA

HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS – Don’t beat yourself up if you’re having a hard time keeping up. Most of us are in the same spot, trying to figure out who is for what as the clock ticks down to the league’s 5 p.m. ET Wednesday deadline for the players to either take or dismiss the league’s 50-50 proposal.

Some players are all for making a deal, as Kobe Bryant told Yahoo! Sports:

“We need for the two sides to get together again before Wednesday, because we’re too close to getting a deal done,” Bryant told Yahoo! Sports. “We need to iron out the last system items and save this from spiraling into a nuclear winter.”

Some others are not. Some of the owners are for it and apparently, per ESPN.com‘s sources, some others are not. It’s high time someone made a move, the right move to get the 2011-12 season up and running.

But when the sides can’t come to a consensus within their own caucuses, it’s tough to see some sort of breakthrough if and when the sides come together again to try and hash out the final details of a new collective bargaining agreement.

With the union representatives from all 30 teams set to meet today in New York, in advance of Wednesday’s end-of-business deadline, plenty of observers are a little nervous about what type of movement could emerge from the gathering. The players have limited options at this point. They can take a vote on the proposal and decide to take the deal, bowing to the league’s “ultimatum,” as union president Derek Fisher called it over the weekend, and breathe life into a season and the NBA fan base. Or they can refuse to even consider it, as Fisher insisted in the immediate aftermath of Saturday’s bargaining session, and push this affair into an even darker corner.

Fair or not, the players will own the next 36 hours of this mess.

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Labor Talks: Here We Go Again

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HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS – Did you wake up this morning wondering what the first weekend of November has in store for you, NBA fans?

Let us help.

How about another round of “talks,” perhaps even another round of hollow smiles and more posturing about deadlines that move at the whim of the men on both sides of the league’s labor dispute and even a scare tactic or two that threatens to cost us the entire 2011-12 season?

We completely understand if lockout fatigue syndrome is full-blown in your household. It’s choking the life out of things here at the hideout, where every breaking news blast is met with a raised eyebrow and questions about who might be pulling the strings on this latest stunt (the dissolution of the union is coming back to the forefront now).

(SI.com and NBA TV’s legal analyst Michael McCann details all of the particulars for you!)

They’ve met in small groups, larger groups and committees. There have been conference calls, secret ones and not-so-secret alike, news conferences and now threats of the union decertifying and still no sign of the one thing we need … a new collective bargaining agreement!

Substantive talks are one thing and we’d welcome anything in that neighborhood going on this weekend.

But showing up to a Manhattan hotel and sticking around just long enough to tell each other that nothing has changed is not what we’d consider progress.

And we’re not the only ones exhausted by the process …

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Bob Ryan of the Boston Globe captures the mood of many with his column that places the current state of affairs in the proper historical context:

It is very annoying for those of us who still love the sport of professional basketball to see what its custodians are currently doing to harm it. I wish it were as easy to decipher as the NFL madness. It was pretty easy to outfit the combatants in that one.

White Hats: Players

Black Hats: Owners

The NFL lockout was about very rich guys, all making a profit from their teams, wanting more. The players asked for nothing. Status quo was fine with them. There was a $9 billion pie, and there was ample opportunity for everyone to get a nice slice.

The NBA pie is worth “only’’ approximately $4 billion, and, unlike the NFL, not everyone makes a profit. That is clear. But just who is losing what remains unclear, because history teaches us that in these matters, professional sports teams make statements concerning their finances that, while perhaps not outright lies, are, shall we say, substantial stretches of the truth. Make that enormous, stupendous, astonishing stretches of the truth.