Wednesday And-1 links: Trade rumor updates, mostly bad news if you want trades

8 Comments

Here is our regular look around the NBA — links to stories worth reading and notes to check out (stuff that did not get its own post here at PBT) — done in bullet point form. Today we start off with a heavy dose of trade rumor updates.

• Talks between Memphis and Minnesota on a trade of Tony Allen and Tayshaun Prince for Chase Budinger and J.J. Barea are basically dead in the water. Memphis doesn’t really want to surrender Allen.

• I tried to tell you this wasn’t happening… multiple sources have come forward to say talks between the Suns and Lakers on Pau Gasol are all but dead.

• Speaking of the Lakers, the Cavaliers reportedly have emerged as Brooklyn’s competition for the contract of Jordan Hill that the Lakers want to dump. Neither team want to give the Lakers anything other than salary cap relief, so the question becomes will one of them offer a little bit more to get the deal done.

• Several sources have confirmed that the New Orleans Pelicans have been granted a $4.15 million player exception for the injured Ryan Anderson, which gives them a little more room to play with if they want to make a trade deadline deal.

• The Mavericks reportedly have shown interest in Cleveland’s Luol Deng (who is available). However, they don’t really have the kind of assets that Cleveland wants. Look for Dallas to be a team that goes at Deng hard in the summer.

Charlotte reportedly has interest in the Pelican’s Anthony Morrow.

• The Bucks have interest in Austin Rivers of the Pelicans.

Washington and other teams have interest in the Bucks’ Luke Ridnour, who could be a solid reserve point guard on a playoff team.

• However, if you’re looking for a Buck who could be moved, the smart money is still on Gary Neal, several teams interested on that front.

———————————–

• In case you don’t check out TMZ, here is what Kenyon Martin said about sleeved jerseys: “I think [sleeved jerseys] are WNBA jerseys. We had to wear them on Christmas, so I had to go with it. That’s the job. You gotta wear the company uniform.”

Ugh. First Kenyon, those WNBA ladies can flat-out ball and the Knicks should have the ball movement and floor spacing the New York Liberty have. Second, as Adam Silver said at All-Star Game and we at PBT have told you before, those jerseys are exceeding sales expectations by the league and as long as that is the case you will see them.

• Denver’s Ty Lawson has joined forces with PETA and has a new ad out saying “I Choose Ink, Not Mink.”

Willy Hernangomez ‘mad’ about falling from Knicks rotation

Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images
1 Comment

Knicks president Steve Mills started his second tenure talking about rebuilding and listed Willy Hernangomez as a core piece.

But Hernangomez, coming off an All-Rookie first-team season, barely played in New York’s season-opening loss to the Thunder– drawing scrutiny.

Then, he didn’t play at all in a loss to the Pistons – eliciting a strong reaction from Hernangomez himself.

Hernangomez, via Fred Kerber of the New York Post:

“The same. I’m still mad,” Hernangomez said. “I cannot help the team win if I’m sitting on the bench. Two games in a row. It’s tough. I have to wait my moment. I cannot say nothing more.”

The Knicks are moving in different directions. Management is talking about building for the future. Coach Jeff Hornacek, who was hired by previous president Phil Jackson, is trying to win now.

There’s a fine line between developing Hernangomez through playing time and making him earn his minutes. Enes Kanter and Kyle O'Quinn might be better right now.

But being marginally better this season won’t get the Knicks anywhere meaningful except lower in the lottery. On the other hand, even on rebuilding teams, winning is most important to a coach’s job security. Earl Watson implemented the Suns’ tanking scheme, and look where that got him.

Hornacek is backed into a corner, and now one of the team’s most important young players is publicly expressing his displeasure. It’s the latest troubling sign in a locker room already suspicious of Hornacek.

Report: Eric Bledsoe requested trade from Suns before season

Christian Petersen/Getty Images
Leave a comment

Suns guard Eric Bledsoe tweeted yesterday:

In light of Phoenix’s 0-3 start and Earl Watson getting fired yesterday, that sure looks like a trade request. Still, there’s risk in making assumptions about vague tweets.

John Gambadoro of Arizona Sports 98.7:

Why wouldn’t Bledsoe want out? The 27-year-old is in his prime and stuck on a young team that would rather tank than play him.

It’ll be interesting to see how Bledsoe explains the tweet. He previously paid lip service to his situation in Phoenix, but it appears he’s ready to open up. On the other hand, public trade requests typically draw fines from the NBA.

Another Hornets backup PG injured

Dave Reginek/Getty Images
Leave a comment

Hornets backup point guard Michael Carter-Williamsout.

Nicolas Batum, who handled a lot of playmaking with Charlotte’s second units – out.

Julyan Stone, another Hornets backup point guard – out.

Hornets release:

The Charlotte Hornets announced today that guard Julyan Stone has suffered a Grade 2 strain of his left hamstring. The injury occurred in practice on Sunday, Oct. 22 and he did not travel with the team to Milwaukee.  Stone is listed as out for tonight’s game against the Bucks and his expected recovery time is estimated at four to six weeks.

The Hornets have been outscored by an astounding 35.8 points per 100 possessions without starter Kemba Walker, producing an offensive rating of just 61.4. That’s in just 23 minutes, but the problem dates back to last season, when Charlotte was outscored by 7.0 points per 100 possessions with a 100.7 offensive rating sans Walker.

Now, the Hornets have little choice but to turn to rookie Malik Monk. Monk is a scoring guard, but his 6-foot-3 size means he has at least worked on playing point guard. Is he ready to play the position full-time for a team eying the playoffs. Probably not, but he’ll just have to do his best to keep Charlotte afloat in the few minutes Walker rests.

Report: Suns also fire three assistant coaches

AP Photo/Jim Urquhart
2 Comments

The Suns fired Earl Watson just three games into the season – the second-earliest firing in NBA history.

They didn’t stop there.

Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN:

Firing assistant coaches during the season has become Phoenix’s m.o. I’m just not sure what it accomplishes.

Were Watson, Nate Bjorkgren, Mehmet Okur and Jason Fraser all so bad at their jobs? If so, why did the Suns figure that out simultaneously?

Were the firings designed to shake up a losing team? If so, wouldn’t ousting Watson have been enough?

Will Phoenix replace those assistants? If not, will the team have the resources to properly train its players?

The Suns are filled with young players who need coaching, particularly skill development. This move looks like it will put them further behind.