The NBA trade rumors continue to fly with more trades expected to be finalized in the upcoming week.
The biggest names still have yet to be moved, including Carmelo Anthony, Kevin Love, and Pau Gasol. Some of the players are free agents but are said to possibly be involved in sign-and-trades.
Anthony recently finished his meetings with the Chicago Bulls, Houston Rockets, Dallas Mavericks, and Los Angeles Lakers–and it appears that the Lakers may be the most in contention for the superstar.
The New York Knicks, which are trying to re-sign Anthony, are most worried about the Lakers, sources told ESPN.
“While the Knicks remain confident in their chances to convince Anthony to return to the Big Apple, the Lakers’ pitch — of teaming Anthony with Kobe Bryant, Pau Gasol and prized rookie Julius Randle on a team with no long-term salary obligations — made what one source described as a ‘strong impression’ on Anthony, who is living and training in Los Angeles this summer, and has made his decision over the holiday weekend ‘tough,’ according to another source close to the situation.”
The teams pursuing Anthony each have different considerations, but the Bulls, Rockets, and Mavericks have much better current rosters than the Lakers and Knicks. However, if he did go to the Lakers the team has the ability to spend immediately to grab another couple free agents as well as retaining Gasol. The center has emerged as a key selling point.
The Knicks would have the same luxury, but is still under heavy salary burdens until next summer. Anthony could get the most money from the Knicks, but a salary from the Lakers or other teams would likely still be around four years and $97 million.
Sources told Yahoo that Anthony had a final meeting with the Knicks and asked pointed questions about the plans of president Phil Jackson–and he left with “increased confidence.”
If Anthony–or LeBron James–don’t sign with the Lakers, then Gasol is ready to leave. He recently told fans via Twitter: Having options is a good ‘problem’ to have. I’m fortunate to have them.” Along with serious championship contenders like the Oklahoma City Thunder and San Antonio Spurs, the Bulls also have interest in the big man.
The Chicago Tribune reported that the team is looking to work out a sign-and-trade with the Lakers for Gasol.
“A source said the Bulls would hope to engage the Lakers in sign-and-trade possibilities should they get a verbal commitment from Gasol,” it said.
“The Bulls would dangle the expiring $16.8 million contract of Carlos Boozer and likely would have to include sweeteners, possibly in the form of draft picks. Steve Nash has an expiring deal the Lakers have shopped in the past.”
Gasol would probably get the most money from the Lakers and the second-most from the Bulls, but have the best chances of winning a title with the Thunder or Spurs.
The Miami Heat and Knicks are among the other teams to express interest.
The Golden State Warriors continue to appear in the frontrunning for Love, who some thought would be traded by now.
The power forward has one-year left on his contract but has told the Minnesota Timberwolves that he won’t sign an extension, prompting the team to look at trading him.
The Warriors and Timberwolves have reportedly been talking for a while but a major hang-up is that the Warriors don’t want to trade Klay Thompson.
“Warriors execs have decided that he only makes them a title contender if they can add him and keep Thompson, too,” reported the Mercury News.
However, the team believes that Love wants to be a Warrior and also that there isn’t another good offer out there for Love or he would have been traded by now.
“So the Warriors are fine with letting the Love discussions simmer maybe all the way into November or even February. Essentially, [co-owner Joe] Lacob and [general manager Bob] Myers probably presume that they don’t lose much by sticking with their offer of David Lee and Harrison Barnes for Love, waiting, and dialing down the urgency just a bit.”
Pierce has been increasingly linked to the Los Angeles Clippers, where his former coach Doc Rivers currently helms the team. The turmoil following the stunning departure of Jason Kidd in Brooklyn seems to contribute to Pierce wanting to leave.
If Pierce goes to the Clippers, a sign-and-trade would probably be the avenue. The Clippers have a number of small forwards, including starter Matt Barnes and backup Danny Grange, and would want to get rid of one or more to clear the space for Pierce, not to mention salary considerations.
But though talks were being held between the teams, a new deal for free agent Spencer Hawes may mean the trade isn’t going to happen.The Clippers will have to be more flexible to trade for Pierce.
Unless Clippers are willing to trade JJ Redick or first-round picks to Nets for Paul Pierce, a sign-and-trade is unlikely, according to Yahoo, citing sources.
The Houston Rockets really want Carmelo Anthony or LeBron James and have been working toward making that happen.
The team was able to unload Omer Asik, freeing up some cap space, but also wants to get rid of backup guard Jeremy Lin.
Lin is a fairly good player but has a pretty large salary for a back-up. One team that has been linked to a trade for him is the Philadelphia 76ers.
The Sixers have lots of cap space and seemingly no desire to win much this season, again.
The Boston Globe reported that the Rockets and Sixers are in “fluid talks surrounding Jeremy Lin,” but Houston is waiting to unload Lin’s deal until it signs Anthony or James.
ESPN confirmed the talks with the Sixers and also added that the Milwaukee Bucks are also interested.
“Trading for Lin all about asset(s) you can get from Houston WITH Lin. Teams with cap space want the future pick or prize that comes with him.”