Oklahoma City Thunder v Houston Rockets

Mavericks give Rockets Chandler Parsons offer sheet

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Update: I guess the Mavericks didn’t need until midnight.

Sam Amick of USA Today:

If Parsons’ contract is accurately reported and my math is correct, this means the Dirk Nowitzki signing is official.

 

Chandler Parsons and Mark Cuban might have celebrated prematurely last night.

Though Parsons and the Mavericks have reportedly agreed on terms to an offer sheet, they haven’t yet officially submitted it.

Parsons has probably signed it. There’s even video of him doing so in the club:

But Dallas hasn’t yet submitted it and started the Rockets’ 72-hour clock.

Dwain Price of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram:

Why the delay?

Daryl Morey is already pressed for time. He must salvage the Omer Asik trade, finalize the Jeremy Lin trade – all to convince Chris Bosh to accept less than a max offer.

By holding off, the Mavericks are essentially doing Houston a favor. Why would they do that?

I see two non-mutually exclusive possibilities.

1. A sign-and-trade is on the table.

Mavericks general manager Donnie Nelson acknowledges that’s a possibility:

The Mavericks obviously value Parsons a lot. They’re willing to pay him all that money. But do they value him enough to also relinquish an asset to ensure they get him? At some point, Parsons’ production doesn’t warrant the cost.

From the Rockets’ perspective, taking back anything more than small contracts could interfere with their pursuit of Bosh. Maybe they can snag draft picks from Dallas, but see the previous paragraph.

I can’t rule out a sign-and-trade, but there are major roadblocks.

Once Parsons signs an offer sheet, a sign-and-trade is no longer possible. It behooves Morey to prolong sign-and-trades negotiations, giving himself more time to handle everything else on his plate.

2. The Mavericks can’t yet offer Parsons his promised money.

How much is Parsons guaranteed over his three-year contract? I’ve seen slightly different numbers.

Marc Stein of ESPN called it “in excess of $45 million.” Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports said “$46 million.”

We’re in the range of Parsons’ max contract, which would be $46,228,710. I’m sure rounding factors in these reports, but I have yet to see someone credibly call Parsons’ offer a “max offer.”

Anyway, prior to agreeing to terms with Parsons, Dallas reached a three-year, $30 million deal with Dirk Nowitzki and agreed to re-sign Devin Harris. Most reports list Harris’ contract as worth $9 million over three years. Price has it $12 million over three years. For now, I’ll go with $9 million.

If Nowitzki’s and Harris’ contracts are fully back-loaded, the Mavericks could offer Parsons $44,413,545. If they take the relatively painless step of renouncing Petteri Koponen – the No. 30 pick in the 2007 draft who has yet to play in the NBA – they could increase their Parsons offer to $45,680,286.

That’s right in the range of what has been reported.

However, that requires Nowitzki to sign his contract first. Signing him with bird rights is the only way he can get 7.5 percent, rather than 4.5, raises. If the Mavericks renounce Nowitzki to sign Parsons first, even with renouncing Koponen, they could offer Parsons only $44,805,401 while preserving enough room to give Nowitzki his promised $30 million.

In other words, the Mavericks must wait to finalize Nowitzki’s contract before submitting Parsons’ offer sheet. In the real world, that could take time. Nelson confirms Nowitzki has yet to sign:

And if Harris’ promised contract is actually $12 million, forget about it. Drop Parsons’ three-year salary to $42,545,286. That would mean either the reports on Parsons’ salary are really off, or the Mavericks must make other moves. I figure they’d have those contingencies arranged before offering Parsons, but they also might be giving themselves an extra day to seek better trades for their expendable players (Raymond Felton, Brandan Wright,Jae Crowder,Ricky Ledo

and Gal Mekel) than would already be in place.

If Harris is getting only $9 million, though, that aspect isn’t a worry. Officially signing Nowitzki first matters, though.

So, once the Mavericks get all their ducks in a row, then what?

Jonathan Feigen of the Houston Chronicle:

 

The Rockets must figure out how everything comes together. Tonight, Dallas will likely put them on the clock to do so.

Miami Heat to retire Shaquille O’Neal’s jersey next season

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Shaquille O’Neal’s No. 32 jersey already hangs in the rafters at Staples Center for the Lakers.  He’s getting a statue there, too.

Next season, he will have his number retired on the other warm southern coast, this time in Miami.

The Heat have announced they will retire Shaq’s No. 32 jersey next season.

“Shaquille O’Neal is one of the truly elite players in the history of the game and one of the greatest players to ever wear a Heat uniform,” team president Pat Riley said in a released statement. “He took us to another level as a basketball franchise while leading us to our first NBA championship. Retiring his number in the rafters, along with Heat greats Alonzo Mourning and Tim Hardaway, is something we are very proud of.”

Riley left out that the Heat also retired Michael Jordan’s 23, and Dan Marino’s 12 also hangs in the rafters of the arena. Neither of those make much sense, but whatever.

Shaq played three-and-a-half seasons in Miami, averaging 19.6 points and 9.1 rebounds a game. Shaq was a three-time All-Star with the Heat and was at the heart of the franchise’s first title, along with Dwyane Wade… and Mark Cuban would tell you the officials. But that’s another discussion. He was also bitter after being traded to Phoenix and slammed Miami management and players on his way out the door.

Time heals all wounds.

Bull for Bull: Pau Gasol to replace Jimmy Butler in All-Star Game

MINNEAPOLIS, MN - FEBRUARY 6:  Pau Gasol #16 of the Chicago Bulls prepares to shoot a free throw against the Minnesota Timberwolves on February 6, 2016 at Target Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2016 NBAE (Photo by David Sherman/NBAE via Getty Images)
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Jimmy Butler is out of the NBA All-Star Game in Toronto this weekend due to a strained knee. Which suck, because he earned that spot, and while the fans didn’t vote him in the coach’s did.

Butler’s teammate Pau Gasol will replace him.

NBA Commissioner Adam Silver gets to make the call on a replacement, and he stayed in Chicago, but he added a front court player to replace a guard. Keeping a Bulls representative might have been part of the thinking. The coaches’ votes on replacement players has been weighed in the past (Gasol may have been high on that list, coaches love him). Also, the East roster has a lot of wings and was light on bigs (Andre Drummond, Paul Millsap and Chris Bosh are the only real bigs), so this gives coach Tyronn Lue some flexibility up front.

The East leading Cleveland Cavaliers remain with just one representative, LeBron James (voted in by the fans).

Gasol is averaging 17 points, 10.9 rebounds, and a couple blocks a game, and is the only thing close to a consistent performer the Bulls have. Besides the injured Butler.

Bulls’ All-Star Jimmy Butler out 3-4 weeks with strained knee

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It was concerning when it happened — Jimmy Butler injured his knee and had to be taken off the court on a stretcher.

But then the reports came back saying the X-rays were negative, this was just a strain. Butler was going to miss some time, but the question was how much?

Turns out, 3-4 weeks — including the All-Star Game, the team announced Tuesday. From the official team press release:

Bulls guard/forward Jimmy Butler was re-examined by Bulls Head Team Physician Brian Cole.  Butler is expected to miss the next three to four weeks with a strained left knee. Butler has begun rehabbing his injury and he will be allowed to engage in all activities as tolerated with the primary goal of maintaining his conditioning over the ensuing weeks.

Butler is the Bulls best player, averaging 22.4 points a game and handling a lot of the shot creation for the team (along with Derrick Rose, who was out Monday injured). The Bulls offense is 1.6 points per 100 possessions better when Butler plays, plus he usually draws the other team’s best wing player as his defensive assignment.

Following an ugly loss to the Hornets Monday night, the Bulls are now 5-12 in their last 17 games. Since Joakim Noah went out for the season with an injured shoulder in particular, their defense has struggled. They still have no offensive identity.  Chicago has fallen to the seven seed in the West, just 1.5 games ahead of Charlotte and falling out of the playoffs completely. This injury is simply going to add to that slide.

The Bulls thought they were the team that could challenge Cleveland for supremacy in the East at the start of the season. Now they may need a late push just to make the playoffs.

NBA Commissioner Adam Silver will pick his All-Star Game replacement. In the past, he has picked the player highest in the fan voting not selected as a reserve, in this case that would be Kyrie Irving. But Silver can go any direction he chooses.

Report: George Karl to remain Kings coach following face-to-face meeting with GM

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George Karl isn’t going anywhere as coach of the Sacramento Kings after all.

At least for now.

Marc Stein of ESPN, who had the report that the Kings decided to fire Karl during the All-Star Break — now says the two sides have sat down and hashed things out. For now.

Those first reports went too far down the line, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports.

First things first, the Kings are a leaky organization right now. Which is never a good sign.

This has become a power struggle in the organization — DeMarcus Cousins has said the Kings’ problems go beyond the players, and he is known not to be a fan of Karl (Rajon Rondo is the coach’s biggest supporter because Karl gives him a green light). Owner Vivek Ranadive remains too impatient, stability is needed.

But there are still big picture questions to be answered.

Ranadive, with Vlade Divac, needs to sit down and set the long-term course for this team, including style of play they want to have, then decide if Karl can be part of that future. Also, if Cousins can be part of that future. If those two can be part of the future together (I’m not sure they can).

There needs to be more meetings with the Kings, and then this summer some significant decisions must be made. But doing it now at the All-Star break isn’t going to change anything. So Karl stays.