Trade deadline: Cavaliers get Jamison, not Stoudemire


nba_jamison_250.jpgUpdate 11:43 p.m. The deal is complete. Gooden is expected to be bought out, Ilgauskas’ agent says he will pursue a buyout as well. Here’s video of Jamison’s exit from Washington.

7:11 p.m. The Cavaliers side talks with the Wizards about Antawn Jamison were supposed to be the fallback plan for if the Amare Stoudemire talks did not work out.

Turns out, they were plan “A.”

The Cavaliers are about to complete a three-team trade that will bring Jamison to the Cavaliers, as well as backup point guard Sebastian Telfair. In the deal, the Los Angeles Clippers will get forward Drew Gooden, and the Wizards will get Zydrunas Ilgauskas, Al Thornton and Cleveland’s first-round pick.

That likely means that Stoudemire will go to the Heat before the deadline tomorrow, in a deal that includes Michael Beasley and a draft pick that the Suns have wanted, among other parts.

Jamison is the stretch four that the Cavaliers have wanted — a big man who can also play inside but also out on the perimeter. Jamison shoots a respectable 38 percent from 16-feet out to the three point line and 35 percent from three, and he is comfortable out there taking eight shots a game from those ranges combined. He also is good in the post and while not a great defender, he is solid.

The Cavaliers may also get Ilgauskas back — the Wizards are reportedly thinking over buying the center out of his contract, making Ilgauskas a free agent. If he waits 30 days after that, he can re-sign with the Cavaliers.

The Clippers get out from under two contracts they didn’t like and get to rent Drew Gooden until the end of the year, and they clear $5.5 million off next year’s books.

The Wizards get a lot of parts, including Ilgauskas who can help them now, and Thornton, who can frustrate fans in DC like he did in LA with his decision making. But it starts the rebuilding process for the Wizards.

Kevin Love unsure about opening-night return

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He’s back in practice with the Cavaliers, but there’s still no clarity on whether Kevin Love will be available for the season opener. Love had shoulder surgery in April after suffering a torn labrum in Game 4 of the Cavs’ first-round series against the Celtics, and doctors initially gave him a timetable of four to six months for a return. The six-month end of that is right around opening night (October 27), but Love still doesn’t know whether he’ll be able to play against the Bulls—although he is hopeful.

Via the Sporting News‘ Sean Deveney:

“I feel pretty good,” Love told Sporting News. “As far as the opener goes, I am not completely sure. I’ll probably get with the doctors and see what they have to say. I know that my six-month post-op is coming up here pretty fast. As far as getting the strength back, getting the range of motion, I feel pretty good, so I am looking forward to getting into some more contact, getting into a rhythm and getting out there as quickly as I can.”

Love has been cleared for 3-on-3 practices, but not yet for 5-on-5. If it were up to him, he’d be back on the court, but he understands he needs to follow the rehab protocol for his injury.

“(Six months is) just a ballpark figure that has generally been thrown out there by anybody who has talked about the rehab process for this kind of an injury,” Love said. “I like to think that I am ahead of the game, but there’s different tests and the due diligence that the doctor will go through and the training staff will go through. So all I can do is go out there every day and attack my rehab and hopefully I will be able to go out there and help these guys as soon as possible.”

At the very least, the Cavs will be without Kyrie Irving (still recovering from knee surgery) and Iman Shumpert (out up to three months with a wrist injury), and probably Tristan Thompson too, unless his contract situation changes unexpectedly. So having Love available would be some much-needed good news. But it’s more important that Love (and everyone else) is healthy for the playoffs. If he’s not ready to play, there’s no need to rush back for an October game.

Greg Smith fails physical, will not join Pelicans

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With both starter Omer Asik and backup Alexis Ajinca out injured for the rest of the preseason (and maybe a little longer), the Pelicans are looking for a center to put next to Anthony Davis for a stretch. That could include a handful of regular season games.

Greg Smith was going to be that man, but the 24-year-old failed his physical, reports the Times-Picayune.

The New Orleans Pelicans were set to sign power forward Greg Smith, but sources said Friday night that he failed his physical examination and will not be joining the team.

And so the search goes on.

The problem is, there are not quality big men still out there on the market, there is a limited supply and just about anyone worth having is spoken for. A few with non-guaranteed contracts may be waived as we get closer to the end of training camps, but that is likely a couple of weeks away.

With both Asik and Ajinca expected back in a few weeks, it’s not worth making a trade or some big move to bring in a center, the Pelicans are just going to have to live with what is out there.