Report: Bucks trade Gadzuric, Bell for Warriors' Maggette

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Charles F. Gardner of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel is reporting that the Bucks and Warriors have agreed to a trade that will send Corey Maggette to the Bucks in exchange for Dan Gadzuric and Charlie Bell
This trade makes sense for both teams, albeit in different ways. For the Warriors, this was a cost-cutting move; Maggette is owed $11 Million in the 2012/13 season, and the Warriors have not had enough success to justify paying a player of Maggette’s caliber an eight-digit salary for three more seasons. 
Another reason this deal makes sense for the Warriors is that Brandon Wright and Anthony Randolph will both (hopefully) be coming back healthy next season. Both of them are power forwards, on their rookie contracts, and have shown tremendous promise when healthy. Maggette played most of his minutes at the 4 spot last season; paying him such a big salary to potentially block Randolph and Wright’s development makes little sense for the Warriors. Undrafted rookie Reggie Williams also came on strong for the Warriors at the end of last season, and Williams is only owed $762,195 next season. 
For the Bucks, this move effectively replaces John Salmons, who will be a free agent this summer. Maggette is far from a complete player, but he is a wing player who knows how to put the ball in the basket. Maggette was a bright spot for the Warriors last season, averaging 19.8 points per game and posting the highest PER of his career. 
Historically, Maggette has been a much more efficient scorer than Salmons; Maggette’s True Shooting was 61.5% last year, and his career TS% is 57.7%; Salmons’ TS% last season was 55.3%, and his career TS% is 54.8%. 
How Maggette will fit into Milwaukee’s offense is a question mark at this point. Maggette excels at getting the ball in isolation and driving to the basket, and few players in the NBA are better than Maggette at drawing contact. If Skiles uses Maggette to get opposing teams in the bonus early in quarters, he could make Andrew Bogut’s life significantly easier on the low block. 
Maggette’s downside is that he doesn’t play particularly well with others; he’s not nearly the outside shooter that Salmons was, and he doesn’t do much without the ball in his hands. If Maggette isn’t directly involved in the offense, it’s very possible that Jennings and Bogut might have less spacing when they run the pick-and-roll. 
Maggette’s salary and the holes in his game make this a risky trade for the Bucks. But with Salmons likely gone, Maggette coming off a great year, and the Bucks on the cusp of contention, it was probably a risk worth taking. 

Three Things to Know: LeBron James racks up third straight triple-double

Associated Press
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Every day in the NBA there is a lot to unpack, so every weekday morning throughout the season we will give you the three things you need to know from the last 24 hours in the NBA. Here’s what you missed on Sunday while practicing your ax throwing in Paris

1) LeBron James has third straight triple-double… and sends equality message. Back in the 2008-09 season, LeBron James strung together three consecutive games of triple-doubles, the season he went on to win his first MVP award. Despite 61 career triple-doubles, he hasn’t had a string like that since.

Until now. LeBron put together three again this week, the most recent coming at the expense of the Washington Wizards on Sunday, a team that had no answer for his playmaking skills. James finished the game with 20 points, 12 rebounds and 15 assists. It wasn’t the most efficient LeBron scoring performance of his career (8-of-23 shooting overall, 2-of-7 from three, his legs looked a little tired on the back-to-back) and he was playing too much in isolation (nearly twice as many possessions as in pick-and-roll). However, down the stretch he was a fantastic playmaker, finding teammates — such as finding the cutting Jeff Green and Kyle Korver — and doing what it took to lift his team to the 106-99 win (Cleveland’s has won five straight and 18-of-19).

LeBron was also sending a message while playing in our nation’s capital: He wore one black and one white of the LeBron 15s, with the word “Equality” on the back of both of them. Good on LeBron, I love that he has found a voice and is comfortable using it.

2) Cavaliers sticking to plan even if he seems ready: Isaiah Thomas should join Cavaliers after the first of the year. Patience. It’s a virtue. Cleveland’s end game is to have another elite playmaker and scorer on the floor in late May and (hopefully) June, not for Christmas Day (no matter who is on the schedule).

Meaning that despite the face Isaiah Thomas is working out and says he and his injured hip feel ready to return, it will be 2018 before he officially pulls on a Cavaliers jersey and takes the court.

This is the smart play by the Cavaliers, who have racked up enough wins not to need to push him. That said, LeBron is carrying a heavy load — he’s played more minutes than anyone in the league so far, and this is his 15th NBA season — and the Cavaliers need to get him some help and rest so he is fresh for the postseason.

3) Detroit ties a franchise record with 17 made threes in win over Orlando. The Pistons are not exactly a great three-point shooting team: They average a middle-of-the-pack 29.3 attempts per game (31.6 percent of their attempts), but at least hit them at a healthy 38.3 percent clip. Detroit does a good job at least of getting corner threes up and knocking them down.

Sunday they were knocking everything down, hitting 17-of-34 threes to tie a franchise record for the most made threes in a game. Anthony Tolliver led the way (5-of-7 from deep) with Reggie Bullock pitching in 4-of-5.

The Pistons have snapped out of their seven-game losing streak to win three in a row now, including a quality win over the Pacers on the second night of a back-to-back.

Heat forward James Johnson expected to miss 7 to 10 days

AP
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MIAMI (AP) The Miami Heat will be without starting forward James Johnson for at least two games and probably more after bursitis was found in his right ankle.

Johnson left Miami’s win over the Los Angeles Clippers on Saturday with ankle pain, and an MRI performed Sunday led to the bursitis diagnosis. Johnson is not traveling with the team for its trip for games at Atlanta on Monday and Boston on Wednesday.

The team says Johnson could miss seven to 10 days, which would also mean his status for home games against Dallas on Dec. 22, New Orleans on Dec. 23 and Orlando on Dec. 26 is in some doubt.

Johnson is averaging 10.9 points and 5.2 rebounds for the Heat this season.

LeBron James wears one black, one white LeBron 15 shoes with “Equality” on back (VIDEO)

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LeBron James notched his third-straight triple-double on Sunday, this one coming against the Washington Wizards. But before the game, the story was all about how James was voicing a silent protest — in Washington D.C., no less — by wearing a special version of his shoes.

LeBron took to the floor wearing his LeBron 15s, but this player edition had the word “Equality” on the back of them. James wore one black shoe and one white shoe.

James wore the black versions of this shoe in the Cleveland Cavaliers’ opener to start the season.

Via Twitter:

LeBron finished the game with 20 points, 15 assists, and 12 rebounds. The Cavaliers beat the Wizards, 106-99.

Stephen Curry says he’d want in on potential Panthers ownership

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The Carolina Panthers are up for sale. Owner Jerry Richardson said he would sell the team late on Sunday following an announcement by the NFL that Richardson was under investigation for “workplace misconduct”. The NFL’s investigation and Richardson’s decision to sell was preceded by a report from SI saying Richardson had paid out settlements amid sexual harassment and racial slur claims.

Enter Sean Combs and Stephen Curry.

Combs — that’s Diddy, you to and me — has previously voiced his interest in being involved with the NFL, and after seeing that Richardson would be selling the team, jumped at the chance to boost his profile. Combs tweeted that he wanted to buy the team, and that’s when Curry joined in.

Via Twitter:

Naturally, Curry is from Charlotte and went to both high school and eventually college in the area, playing at Davidson. He’s an avid Panthers fan and has been on the sideline for the team publicly many times over the years.

Curry being part of an ownership group for the Panthers would be pretty wild. Perhaps Charlotte Hornets owner Michael Jordan would like to join in? It seems like they would have the liquidity and credit availability between the three of them to get the team.

Then again, the asking price for the Panthers could be north of $2 billion. The last team to be sold was the Buffalo Bills in 2014 for $1.4 billion. In September, Forbes released a valuation for the Panthers that put them at $2.3 billion.

Might need to get a few others involved in this one.