Orlando Magic v Indiana Pacers - Game Two

PBT’s trade deadline tracker — up to minute news, analysis

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Trade deadline day in the NBA can be ridiculously hard to keep up with as reality and rumor collide. We understand. That’s why we’re here to help. This is our trade deadline day deal tracker — the one place where all the NBA’s trade deadline news and rumors will be. Plus you get our thoughts on everything. This post will be constantly updated throughout the day as the newest information becomes available. Just hit refresh and you will know what we do.

Also, you can track what everyone at PBT, Yahoo Sports and the Comcast Sports Network is saying on twitter by checking out our running NBA twitter feed for the day. That is a great way to stay on top of things.

4:04 pm: We should note that the Utah Jazz chose not to make a move and now have two free agent big men, Al Jefferson and Paul Millsap. They likely are going to lose one of those for nothing now (they probably re-sign the other).

4:00 pm: Golden State did make two small deals at the trade deadline, which is enough to get them under the luxury tax line for this year. They sent Jeremy Tyler to Atlanta and Charles Jenkins to Philadelphia, reports Marc Stein of ESPN. They are getting a second round pick back on both of those. This doesn’t impact the Warriors on the court but it is good for their bottom line (getting under the line helps with the repeater tax in future years).

3:55 pm: Ric Bucher of Comcast Bay Area says it was the Hawks that back out of the Josh Smith trade at the last minute. Bucher put this out on Sulia: “Hawks would’ve received Ekpe Udoh, Luc Mbah-Moute, Beno Udrih and a protected No. 1 pick. Can’t imagine the Bucks are happy having invested so much time in trying to make it happen. Leaves big question now if Hawks can do better this summer.”

3:33 pm: One last trade sneaks in just under the wire at the league office — New York trades Ronnie Brewer to Oklahoma City for a second-round pick, Ken Berger of CBSSports.com reports.

3:18 pm: Josh Smith is staying in Atlanta. This was always a possibility — Danny Ferry wants cap space and flexibility and if he couldn’t get that with a trade he could just let Smith and his $13 million come off the books at the end of the season. That’s what he’s doing.

3:16 pm: From the earlier Jordan Crawford to the Celtics trade, the Wizards also get Jason Collins from Boston. Note to Wizards fans, if you see a lot of Collins on the court it’s a bad sign.

3:08 pm: Charlotte swapped forwards right at the deadline with the Magic — Hakim Warrick to Orlando,  Josh McRoberts to Charlotte.

3:06 pm: Atlanta traded Anthony Morrow to Dallas for Dahntay Jones, reports ESPN.

3:04 pm: Looks like the Bucks and Magic worked out a straight up deal for J.J. Redick — Redick, Gustavo Ayon, and Ish Smith go to the Bucks and the Magic get  Doron Lamb, Beno Udrih and Tobias Harris.

3:00 pm: DEADLINE. A few things may still trickle in, we’re watching for it, but the paperwork needs to already be at the NBA league office.

2:59 pm: The Hawks have pulled out of the three-way talks with the Bucks and Magic, a deal that at one point may have involved a last, desperate attempt to move Josh Smith. So it comes down to the Bucks trying to get J.J. Redick straight up.

2:53 pm: From Joshua Robbins of the Orlando Sentinel: “The Magic are working on a 3-way trade, which would include J.J. Redick. Milwaukee is one of the teams.” That smells of a Josh Smith deal as well, but there are not a lot of details.

2:48 pm: Right up against the deadline, the Thunder are talking about a deal that would send backup point guard Eric Maynor to Portland, reports Marc Stein of ESPN. That makes sense for the Blazers, the question is what goes back to OKC in the deal. There seems to be some weight here as it popped up a number of places. And Stein says this appears to be all but done.

2:40 pm: Report now that the Pacers are out of the J.J. Redick sweepstakes. That means unless somebody swoops in last minute it is down to Philly and Orlando for a possible deal. It feels more and more like Redick could stay the season, but then Orlando gets nothing for him when he leaves as a free agent this summer.

2:30 pm: Just half an hour left until the trade deadline and Josh Smith is still in Atlanta, J.J. Redick is still in Orlando and Metta World Peace is still in his Cookie Monster pajamas.

2:09 pm: The Suns and Raptors have made it official — Hamed Haddadi and a second round pick to  Phoenix, which brings Sebastian Telfair to Toronto as a backup point guard. We’d heard about this one before and Chris Broussard of ESPN says it’s done.

2:02 pm: The trade is Jordan Crawford to the Celtics for the expiring contract of Leandro Barbosa, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports. Barbosa is out for the season with an ankle injury, this is simply a cash move for Washington. Crawford can provide some perimeter scoring for the Celtics off the bench.

2:00 pm: One hour to the deadline. One hour left.

1:57 pm: Now multiple reports say that while Jordan Crawford looks headed to Boston, it is not Fab Melo going to Washington. Not sure who else is on the end of that bench the Wizards would want.

1:50 pm: The Miami Heat have worked out a deal to send little used big man Dexter Pittman to the Memphis Grizzlies for a 2013 second round pick reports Marc Spears of Yahoo Sports. Memphis also gets Miami’s second round pick (they swap picks). This creates a roster spot for the Heat to add another body.

1:48 pm: Deal close now for something reported a while ago — Jordan Crawford goes to Boston and Fab Melo comes back to Washington. Marc Spears of Yahoo is the latest but this has been picking up steam.

1:44 pm: Zach Lowe of Grantland makes a good point — we had a couple major deals this year, just they happened earlier than normal. Those are the James Harden and Rudy Gay trades.

1:41 pm: There are multiple reports that the Lakers approached the Cavaliers about Daniel Gibson, problem is what minor role player on the Lakers would you like to take back? Exactly. The Lakers have no assets worth trading.

1:13 pm: The Nuggets don’t like the offers they are getting and will not trade Timofey Mozgov, reports Adrian Wojnarowski. They also are not going to buy him out. He’s just going to have very good seats at the rest of the Nuggets games this season.

1:06 pm: I feel like I am just sitting here humming the Jeopardy theme.

Fact is that the new CBA and luxury tax  have scared teams off and they are not making the big moves this deadline. The owners hoped this would flatten out the talent pool by making teams afraid of spending like the Lakers did this summer anyway. It feels more and more like Josh Smith may get moved and some smaller deals but that’s it. Even Redick may stay in Orlando.

12:59 pm: Josh Smith admitted that it was hard to sleep last night because of all the trade rumors, tweets the Atlanta Journal Constitution. He also said, “No matter what happens Atlanta will still be home. ”

12:50 pm: Portland is still shopping J.J. Hickson around but want a first round pick and are not finding any takers, ESPN Chris Broussard reports. Hickson is a free agent this summer and teams that have interest will just wait until then.

12:48 pm: So far a very slow trade deadline, but with more than two hours left things could start to fly. However, the predictions of a slower than normal trade deadline have a nice lead as we make the turn toward the home stretch.

12:43 pm: Sorry Bulls fans, but your team will not be moving Carlos Boozer at the deadline, for anyone or anything (via ESPN’s Chris Broussard, although it is not a surprise). They also are not going to get J.J. Redick. It looks like you will get the same old Bulls, but with Derrick Rose, the rest of the way.

12:35 pm: More buzz that if the Knicks make any move it will be Ronnie Brewer. Iman Shumpert is not going anywhere. He stays a Knick, to the delight of Knicks fans.

12:30 pm: Teams are dropping out of the J.J. Redick sweepstakes like flies. Detroit is out of the running and the Bucks have pulled back. Ridick likes the idea of the San Antonio Spurs — he lives in Texas in the off-season and the Spurs are really good — but they are out according to Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports. The Magic want a first round pick and the Spurs first round picks stink. Pacers, 76ers still in mix, may be others.

11:58 am: Some buzz out there that the Clippers and Celtics are talking again (about what… Kevin Garnett? Not again). Again, coach Vinny Del Negro and some in the Clippers organization want to go into full on win-now mode and try to swing a deal like that for Eric Bledsoe and DeAndre Jordan, but the decision makers are not sold. Chris Paul pushing for it is the one guy who can swing that, but he tried to talk KG into leaving Boston this summer and was told no.

11:43 am: Marc Stein of ESPN says this could happen — Hamed Haddadi and a second round pick to  Phoenix, which brings Sebastian Telfair to Toronto as a backup point. As we’ve said, since the Jose Calderon trade the Raptors need a backup point so there is some logic here. Telfair also is friends with Kyle Lowry and Rudy Gay.

11:40 am: The Boston Celtics are making a trade-deadline run at Tyreke Evans and the Kings are open to the idea, reports Mark Stein of ESPN.

11:34 am: Josh Smith is participating in Hawks practice on Thursday. Take that for what it’s worth. His name still is being passed around in trade talks more than a joint at a Cypress Hill concert.

11:31 am: Multiple reports say the Kings are willing to trade Tyreke Evans in the right deal. Not sure what the right deal would be but that is out there

11:28 am: The Bobcats want to move Gerald Henderson — a solid role-playing guard — but can’t find anyone willing to surrender a first round pick for him, reports Adrian Wojnarowski at Yahoo Sports. If I were a contending team needing guard help to win now and with a pick in the 20s, I’d offer that. But nothing more. Apparently Charlotte can’t even get that.

11:19 am: While there seems to be some buzz out there, the Nuggets have said they have no intention of buying out Timofey Mozgov’s deal. If you want him, you have to trade for him. Miami wants him but lacks the assets to get it done, reports Adrian Wojnarowski at Yahoo Sports.

11:14 am: In case you are watching SportsCenter or some other network talking about it, let me just be clear again — the Lakers ARE NOT TRADING DWIGHT HOWARD UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES. So stop talking about it.

11:07 am: There has been some buzz that the Rockets would try to flip Thomas Robinson after getting him in a trade Wednesday. First, they could only flip him if he got to the team and cleared his physical before the deadline, which is unlikely. Plus, they want to keep him in Houston, not trade him, according to Rockets beat reporter for the Chronicle Jonathan Feigen.

10:59 am: What is it with the Bulls owners and their owners hatred of the luxury tax? J.J. Redick would be a great fit for the Bulls on the court, but they are cooling on him because Redick is a free agent next summer and to re-sign him would send the Bulls into the luxury tax, Ken Berger reports at CBS. The Bulls have never paid the tax. Never. And they are trying to move Rip Hamilton now to get below the line this year.

10:51 am: The Bulls would love to move Richard Hamilton to save some money, other teams seem to be asking for a pick to sweeten the deal and the Bulls are saying no, reports Adrian Wojnarowski.

10:45 am: Who is pushing hardest for J.J. Redick? The Bucks, Pacers, Spurs, 76ers according to David Aldridge of TNT and NBA.com. In the Bucks case it might only be if Monta Ellis gets moved (part of the J.R. Smith deal). The Magic will end up taking what they see as the best first rounder of those for him (Sixers?).

10:37 am: Now comes the rumor that the Bucks will not send Monta Ellis to Atlanta as part of a Josh Smith deal. That from Chris Broussard. I would say not to believe much of anything specific coming out of the talks. The talks are certainly serious and going on, but the details will be in constant flux until a deal is reached.

10:34 am: The Boston Celtics and Washington Wizards are having a Fab Melo for Jordan Crawford discussion, according to ESPN’s Chris Broussard. That would give the Celtics some more perimeter shooting.

10:15 am: It looks like the Milwaukee Bucks may be the font runners to land Josh Smith, Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports reports. The deal would look something like Monta Ellis, Ekpe Udoh and other players for Smith and Devin Harris.

10:05 am: The Lakers are looking to shed a little salary and are offering Steve Blake, Chris Duhon, Devin Ebanks, Darius Morris for 2nd-round picks, reports Adrian Wojnarowski at Yahoo Sports.

Contrary to earlier reports, the Magic are still looking at Redick deals and have some offers of first round picks, they are just in the 20s and the Magic are holding out something better comes along, reports Wojnarowski.

Golden State is trying to unload some of the guys at the end of their bench to get under the luxury tax line.

9:55 am: Sounds like the Bucks and Dallas have a deal in place to send reserve point guard Beno Udrih to Texas, but it’s on hold in case Udrih becomes part of the ongoing talks between the Bucks and Hawks about Josh Smith, reports Marc Stein at ESPN.

9:50 am: Here is where we stand as the morning tips off:

• The Orlando Magic apparently told J.J. Redick they were not going to trade him. I wouldn’t bet on that. Lots of teams still interested and talking to Orlando.

• It depends on who you talk to and when, I guess. Ken Berger at CBSSports says the Rockets are “involved at high level” in Josh Smith talks. Then Adrian Wojnarowski at Yahoo Sports reports the Rockets appear to be out of the Josh Smith sweepstakes, because Atlanta asking for Omer Asik and Chandler Parsons, which is a pretty steep price. The Rockets will have the cap space to go after Smith (or Dwight Howard, or anyone) this summer as a free agent if they so choose.

• The Raptors are the front-runners to land Sebastian Telfair, reports Wojnarowski. This makes sense, after the Jose Calderon trade the Raptors need some depth at the point and Telfair is out of the rotation in Phoenix.

• Andrea Bargnani likely is not moved at the deadline, reports the Toronto Sun. That fits with the rumblings out there, the fact is the Raptors couldn’t get real value back for him. Why? Teams have seen Bargnani play.

• The Spurs may not move DeJuan Blair after all, reports David Aldridge of TNT. That may just be posturing as the Spurs try to get a better deal. If he does stay it sucks for Blair, who has been squeezed out of the rotation.

Ken Berger of CBS brings us another report that the Nets don’t want Ben Gordon of the Bobcats. The Nets really want to get that news out there.

Report: Doc Rivers says Clippers not interested in moving Blake Griffin

Blake Griffin, Jason Smith
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NBA general managers are vultures — if they see an opportunity to buy low on a player, they circle and hope to pick off a meal.

You can be sure Clippers’ GM Doc Rivers phone was full of those calls starting soon after the word leaked of Blake Griffin required surgery on his hand after punching a team employee. The vultures have called with lowball offers, and even when shot down some teams have made sure word of their call leaked out in a “look how hard we are working to get you a star” kind of way. It’s good for PR.

The Clippers are not looking to trade Blake Griffin. Right now, at least.

From Ben Bolch of the Los Angeles Times.

Bolch expanded upon that in an article.

The Clippers have fielded calls involving various trade proposals but remain reluctant to part with a cornerstone of their franchise and a player who, at age 26, was having possibly his best season before he was sidelined by a quadriceps injury the day after Christmas and subsequently a broken hand sustained in a scuffle with assistant equipment manager Matias Testi.

Right now the vultures are circling, and lowball offers are all the Clippers will get — they couldn’t come close to getting value back. This season the Clippers will get Griffin healthy and hope they can make a deep playoff run.

If the Clippers are bounced in the first or second round this spring, they have some soul searching to do — can the core of Griffin, Chris Paul, and DeAndre Jordan beat the Golden State Warriors? If they feel the answer is no, then they must consider changes. And if they were to shake up the core, Griffin may be the most movable piece — plus the Clippers have shown they can play well without him.

However, the Clippers may try to upgrade the pieces around that core and make one more run at the Warriors, then consider breaking things up in 2017 if it doesn’t work out. It’s hard to put together a core as good as the Clippers have right now, and breaking it up comes with great risk. They are not just going to leap blindly off that cliff.

The bottom line is, any Griffin trade rumors you hear up until Draft night, and likely beyond that, are more teams trying to look good to their fan bases than valid trade talks.

Robert Horry says Stephen Curry better offensively than peak Kobe Bryant

Los Angeles Lakers' Kobe Bryant, right, greets Golden State Warriors' Stephen Curry (30) prior to an NBA basketball game Thursday, Jan. 14, 2016, in Oakland, Calif. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)
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Stephen Curry has a long road ahead to walk away from the game with the resume and legacy that Kobe Bryant will leave with come April.

But is he already a bigger threat on offense than Kobe ever was?

Former NBA player, Kobe teammate, and Lakers studio guy Robert Horry said yes, while on SiriusXM NBA Radio with host Justin Termine. Here is his quote (hat tip Hoopshype):

“Kobe in his prime really wasn’t that great of a three-point shooter. He was a drive, get-to-the-hole, dunk-on-you type of guy. Steph can drive and float you. He can shoot it from half court. You have to guard him at all times.”

Peak Kobe on offense (the 2006-07 season, I would say) averaged 31.6 points and 5.4 assists per game, with a true shooting percentage of 58 percent and a usage rate of 33.6. This season Curry is averaging 29.8 points and 6.4

This season Curry is averaging 29.8 points and 6.4 assists, with a true shooting percentage of 68.2 percent and a usage rate of 32.3.

There are a lot of difficulties in comparing the apples and oranges of those seasons, but we can safely say that because of the three ball Curry is a more efficient scorer than Kobe ever was. He is certainly more dangerous that way. I agree that Curry creates more problems on offense because of how his shooting stretches the defense, plus he can drive the lane.

Kobe, at his peak, was a better defender than Curry. (Curry is better than some critics want to give him credit for, he led the NBA in steals last season, but he does it more within a team system where he is solid, he is not the lock-down wing defender Bryant was back in the day.)

I hate comparing all-time greats and saying X is better than Y, because the game evolves and situations are different. Kobe will walk away from the game this summer one of the all-time greats, no question. We’re a long way from knowing Curry’s final legacy, but it will be as probably the greatest shooter and one of the greatest offensive forces the game has known. A guy built for today’s NBA rules and style.

Maybe we could just try to enjoy both and not compare.

Snowed-out Jazz/Wizards game rescheduled for Feb. 18

Bradley Beal, John Wall
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We haven’t seen a back-to-back-to-back in the NBA since the lockout season, when the league tried to cram 66 games in after Christmas.

The Washington Wizards have one now.

The Utah at Washington game originally scheduled for Jan. 23, which was snowed out because of a major storm hitting the Eastern seaboard, has been rescheduled for Thursday, Feb. 18 at 7 p.m. Eastern at Verizon Center.

That makes the Wizards’ schedule:

Feb. 18: vs. Utah
Feb. 19: vs. Detroit
Feb. 20: at Miami

The Jazz have a back-to-back as well, facing Boston on the 19th.

Mike Conley does not crush Knicks free agent dreams, says everything on table

Memphis Grizzlies guard Mike Conley (11) gestures after making a 3-point basket in the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Houston Rockets, Friday, Nov. 20, 2015, in Memphis, Tenn. (AP Photo/Brandon Dill)
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When you talk about the most underrated players in the NBA, especially with the casual fan, Mike Conley is at the top of the list. The Grizzlies’ point guard has played at an All-Star level for a few seasons now but hasn’t gotten the recognition, in part because it’s Memphis and in part because the West is stacked with quality point guards.

The New York Knicks desperately need an upgrade at the point.

Which has led to the latest fantasy of seemingly every Knick fan (and talking head in the city) — the free agent Conley coming to New York this summer. When asked about it Friday before the Grizzlies and Knicks squared off, Conley didn’t kill the rumors (which in New York is like throwing gasoline on them). Here are his quotes, via Ian Begley of ESPN.

“I think everything will be on the table when that time comes,” Conley said Friday morning after the Grizzlies’ shootaround at Madison Square Garden. “I haven’t committed to anything…

“They’ve got talent, obviously,” he said. “I think [Kristaps] Porzingis surprised a lot of people. He’s going to be very, very good in this league. He already is pretty good. But he’s going to grow each year, and they already have one of the best small forward in Melo [Carmelo Anthony]. They’ve got a young team, so they’ve got a lot of room to improve.”

The smart money is on Conley staying in Memphis, the only NBA team he has ever played for. Conley was very active last summer in recruiting Marc Gasol to remain in Memphis, and has said it would be very difficult to leave him. Plus the Grizzlies can offer more money — one more guaranteed year plus larger raises.

The Knicks will need to lose some salary before July 1 just to offer Conley a max, which likely starts around $24 million (depends on the final salary cap number). What the Knicks can offer is a larger stage for his brand and the chance to bring that brand out of the shade of Gasol and Zach Randolph.

Conley — who is averaging 14.6 points and 6.1 assists per game, is shooting 35 percent from three, is good on the pick-and-roll, plus is one of the best defensive point guards in the game — will have plenty of other suitors as well. He’s one of the best players on the free agent market this summer.