Trades are about leverage — if you don’t have any you don’t get the best offers.
Everyone knows the Cleveland Cavaliers are trying to trade Andrew Bynum after his recent suspension. So what kind of offers do you think they are getting? Exactly. There are teams out there that have interest in Bynum but if they trade for him they are on the hook for more than $6 million in salary the rest of this season, where if the Cavaliers waive him Bynum becomes a free agent and teams can snap him up for a minimum deal (or close to it, certainly less than $6 million). So they are waiting.
Now we get this little bit of spin out of Cleveland, via the Akron Beacon-Journal.
The Cavs have until Jan. 7 to trade or release him or they will be responsible for the balance of his $12 million deal.
If they can’t find a deal by Jan. 7, a league source confirmed the team is considering holding onto him anyway. They would have until June 30 to trade or release him before his $12 million deal for next season becomes guaranteed.
Leverage. Sort of. If you think the Cavs would pay $6 million to have a trade chip for the draft next June. The Cavs have $61 million in salary this season on the books, well short of the tax line, so while they save money without Bynum they aren’t paying a bigger penalty to keep him.
Other than the disruption he is around the team. Which is why the Cavs likely cut or trade him by the 7th.
Last season, DeMarcus Cousins received zero MVP votes (the same as every year of his career). Even though he averaged 24.1 points, and 12.7 rebounds a game, which was enough to get him his first All-Star berth, MVP is another thing entirely. Only players on winning teams tend to draw the attention of MVP voters.
This season, can Cousins — arguably the best center in the game — get in the conversation?
He thinks it’s more than just that, he told Kevin Ding at Bleacher Report.
The topic is the 2015-16 NBA MVP award and whether it could be reachable for DeMarcus Cousins.
“Reachable, man?” Cousins told Bleacher Report, his voice rising high. “It’s mine to grab.”
As noted above, the only way Cousins gets into the conversation — fair or not — is if the Kings are in the playoffs (at the very least). He understands that.
“It’s going to take a full team effort,” Cousins said. “I’ll try to play at a high level and bring my team along with me.”
Vlade Divac built a Kings’ team designed to start winning now — as you would expect from a team a year away from moving into a new arena they need to fill. Owner Vivek Ranadive is not about selling hope anymore, he wants to sell wins.
I think Cousins can help provide that.
I’m less sold on the cast around him being able to help.
After a bumpy season where the he fought with Suns coaches, then a summer where he and his twin Marcus felt they were blindsided by a trade, Markieff Morris has been plenty vocal about his unhappiness in Phoenix. To the point it has cost him some serious cash.
So what should we expect from Markieff Morris’ upcoming season?
Relative calm, I tell Jenna Corrado of NBCSports in this latest edition of PBT Extra previewing the NBA season.
The reasons are twofold. First, he has to realize the Suns aren’t trading him anyway (especially not while he publicly demands a trade, lowering his trade value). Second, can you imagine how new locker room leader Tyson Chandler is going to react to that? Chandler was brought in to fill a leadership void in the locker room, and you can bet he will make his displeasure at such team-disrupting antics known.
Still not sure if that’s enough to get the Suns to the playoffs.