Winderman: What other onerous contracts could be traded?

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Well, the Magic, Wizards and Suns showed us, didn’t they? More to the point, they shut us up.

“No one is taking on Gilbert’s deal.”

“The Magic aren’t unloading Rashard’s contract.”

“The Suns are stuck with Turkoglu.”

We all either said it or thought it. For years, the crutch in shooting down the wildest trade permutations was that there simply were some contracts in a salary-cap world that were untradeable. Or so we were lead to believe.

Instead, in the spirit of the season, Orlando, Washington and Phoenix got involved in a bit of re-gifting. The lesson to us all is that apparently anyone can be moved with a little creativity and a lot of equivalent desperation.

So picking up where the Magic, Wizards and Suns left off, we look at a few other deals heretofore believed to be immobile.

Luol Deng, Bulls: Including this season, four years at $51.3 million remain. The Nuggets apparently had no interest during the early rounds of Carmelo talks, but for a suitor that otherwise would be unable to lure talent in free agency, there is value there. With the Bulls so deep into Carlos Boozer and Joakim Noah, and soon Derek Rose, there will be a need to sort things out.

Anderson Varejao, Cavaliers: Including this season, five seasons at $43.1 million remain. The money is a bit extreme for a complementary piece, and what the Cavaliers need at this stage is a post presence more than a hustle player. It would behoove just about every contender to consider the possibilities.

Brendan Haywood, Mavericks: Including this season, five seasons at $41.7 million remain. Dallas made the offer this summer when Haywood was viewed as a starter, a role he no longer fills with the Mavericks. But it is a role he could possibly fill elsewhere.

Richard Hamilton, Pistons: Including this season, three seasons at $35.5 million remain. He wants out and the Pistons have little need for a disgruntled scorer on the downside. At $12.5 million, he is a bit pricy to be utilized as a reserve by a contender, but could be swapped in a deal for another team’s headache.

Baron Davis, Clippers: Including this season, three seasons at $41.7 million remain. Speaking of another team’s headache, the Clippers need to make this go away sooner rather than later. At this point, Davis has to play himself into a trade, show there still is something there.

Travis Outlaw, Nets: Including this season, five seasons at $35 million remain. Well, that didn’t take long, did it? Now the challenge is searching for another 2010 offseason signing that soured just as quickly elsewhere.

Elton Brand, 76ers: Including this season, three seasons at $51.2 million remain. For our money, we make this the new clubhouse leader as the league’s current most untradeable contract.

Josh Childress, Suns: Including this season, five seasons at $33.5 million remain. Can they coax him back to Greece?

Jose Calderon, Raptors: Including this season, three seasons at $29.3 million remain. And who exactly thought this was a $10 million player? The Raptors have been trying to push him out seemingly since the deal was signed.

Ira Winderman writes regularly for NBCSports.com and covers the Heat and the NBA for the South Florida Sun-Sentinel. You can follow him on Twitter at http://twitter.com/IraHeatBeat.

Malcolm Brogdon: Charlottesville was white supremacism and terrorism

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Rookie of the Year and Bucks guard Malcolm Brogdon – who played four years at the University of Virginia, which became the epicenter of white-nationalist protests – was asked about the events in Charlottesville and his thoughts on the statue of Robert E. Lee.

Brogdon, via Sports Illustrated:

It was pretty shocking. To see this happen at a place that I call home is sort of jarring for me.

But, if I were to be honest, the level of hate and blatant racism that still dominates the minds of so many Americans today, it’s not shocking to me. I think at the end of the day, you have to call it what it is. I think this is white supremacy, and I think it’s domestic terrorism. I think we live in a country where we go overseas, and we fight other people’s wars, and we fight terrorism overseas internationally. But we don’t want to fully acknowledge the terrorism that goes home domestically.

So, I think it’s a shocking event. But it’s not surprising sort of the hate that is still around.

My thoughts about it have never changed. I’m a person that thinks things should not be glorified that did not do the country any justice. For example, these statues stand still, but all they do is divide people. At this point in time, I think that America needs to be unified. And the statues are clearly something that’s not unifying people. It’s going to continue to create a divide within our communities. And I think they have no place in our society right now.

Kudos to Brogdon for calling spades spades.

Racism is still a problem – not one we’re comfortable discussing, which only exacerbates the problem. It must be acknowledged to be solved.

“Terrorism” is too often a term we reserve for only crimes committed by Muslims. A white supremacist driving his car into a group of counter-protestors – killing one – is almost certainly designed to terrorize them.

But I disagree with Brogdon that the statue should be removed because it’s divisive. It should be removed because it glorifies someone who led a war against the United States to protect the racist institution of slavery.

Unity is nice, but unifying around what? Brogdon might find that the people who agree with his call for unity have a different vision than he does.

Jazz mitigate loss of Gordon Hayward well, but that’s still a devastating departure

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NBCSports.com’s Dan Feldman is grading every team’s offseason based on where the team stands now relative to its position entering the offseason. A ‘C’ means a team is in similar standing, with notches up or down from there.

The Jazz traded up to draft a player who is already exceeding expectations.

But they lost Gordon Hayward.

The Jazz made a savvy trade to land a starter before free agency even began.

But they lost Gordon Hayward.

The Jazz executed several nice value signings.

But they lost Gordon Hayward.

In what was otherwise a smart offseason, there’s just no way around Utah losing Hayward – a 27-year-old star at the critical wing position. Hayward’s importance to the Jazz is self-evident in the effort to re-sign him – a max offer, a billboard, multiple players flying to San Diego for a final meeting. His departure to the Celtics derails what had been a promising ascension.

Two years ago, the Jazz were the only team with four 25-and-under players – Hayward, Rudy Gobert, Derrick Favors and Rodney Hood – who posted at least six win shares.

Last year, the Jazz were the only team a pair of 26-and-under players – Hayward and Gobert – who posted at least 10 win shares.

Though Favors’ and Hood’s progress was sidetracked by injury, Utah still made another step forward with Hayward and Gobert becoming All-Star caliber. If Favors and Hood got healthy, they could have joined Hayward and Gobert – and Donovan Mitchel (who was drafted No. 13 this year then impressed in summer league) and Ricky Rubio (who was acquired for just a likely low first-round pick thanks to the Jazz’s excess cap space to close the 2016-17 fiscal year) – in a core that was growing into a legitimate Western Conference power.

Alas, Hayward bolted for Boston, which threatens even more in the Eastern Conference.

The Jazz rebounded as well as can be expected. They preemptively got Rubio for just a lottery-protected Thunder pick, allowing them not to re-sign George Hill and deal with the 31-year-olds frequent injury troubles. Mitchell has quickly drawn rave reviews. Thabo Sefolosha ($5.25 million), Jonas Jerebko ($4 million) and Ekpe Udoh ($3.2 million) are all on favorable salaries – and each have unguaranteed seasons tacked on for next year, making their deals even more team-friendly.

Those players could join a deep rotation that already includes Gobert, Favors, Hood, Joe Ingles, Joe Johnson and Dante Exum. And here’s a little secret: Gobert – not Hayward, the team’s lone All-Star – was Utah’s best player last year. The Jazz aren’t falling off the map just yet.

Their defense might be even better. They could win even more than the 51 games they won last year if healthier.

But their offense will suffer without Hayward’s creation (which could hurt their defensive rating, if they’re defending after makes less often), and their ceiling is far lower. Guaranteeing Ingles $50 million during his 30s is probably an overpay that will also limit flexibility, though at least his salary declines annually.

The Jazz did a good job of handling losing a star. But losing a star isn’t good, and I’m grading results.

Offseason grade: D+

Kyrie Irving-LeBron James saga featured in hilarious parody of Eminem’s ‘Stan’ (video)

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What’s going on between Kyrie Irving and LeBron James?

I’ve seen better explanations.

But I haven’t seen more entertaining explanations.

Houston billionaire Dan Friedkin expresses interest in buying Rockets

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We’ve seen the flashy names – Beyonce and Hakeem Olajuwon – interested in buying the Rockets.

But what about someone who can actually afford a majority stake?

Mark Berman of Fox 26:

Houston billionaire Dan Friedkin, owner and CEO of Gulf States Toyota and the president and CEO of the Friedkin Group, acknowledged in a statement released to FOX 26 Sports that he is interested in buying the Houston Rockets franchise.

“I’ve expressed interest in exploring the purchase of the Houston Rockets,” Friedkin said in a statement released by his company.

Forbes pegs Friedkin’s net worth worth at $3.1 billion and the Rockets’ value $1.65 billion. So, while he might be able to buy the team outright, it’d likely be a stretch of his assets.

More likely, if Friedkin is serious about purchasing the team, he’ll do so as part of a group. Whether he’d spend enough to be the controlling owner is an open question.