Report: Cavaliers “backing far away” from Carmelo Anthony trade

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Kevin Love is not completely off the table. There are maybe 10 guys in the entire NBA for which there is no price to make a trade work. However, Love falls into that next tier of “in theory you can get him but in reality there is no way another team would actually give up enough to make a deal.”

Carmelo Anthony is not enough. Not close. No sane GM is moving a 28-year-old, at his peak Love for 33-year-old and declining Anthony.

And the Cavaliers are not interested in a Love for ‘Melo swap, reports Joe Varden of the Cleveland Plain Dealer.

Multiple sources with knowledge of the Cavs’ thinking are also backing far away from a potential trade for Anthony. It doesn’t mean a deal for Anthony is entirely out of the question. Just mostly out.

That hesitancy stems from this: Teams never want to completely close the door, just in case. At this time of the year (and through much of the season) teams talk all the time to each other, gauging interest and value of their players and others. There is a Mississippi River of talk between teams, what becomes public is the cups of that water media members dip in and pull out. For teams, never say never, they never know what might develop. The story on this deal covers this.

So a deal for Love would have to make the Cavs better. Who they could acquire for Love and his huge contract that would actually improve the team is a small group. In fact, the Cavs would be more likely to seek multiple, gifted role players in return for Love who could play behind LeBron James and Kyrie Irving, instead of alongside them.

While the Cavs will not rule out trading Love (the only player entirely off limits, in any scenario, is James), several sources said it’s highly unlikely he’s moved by the Feb. 23 trade deadline.

Love is going to be a Cavalier after the deadline and heading into the playoffs. I could concoct some fantasy basketball trade scenario where Cleveland would move Love, but nobody makes those trades in the real world.

The Cavaliers have brought in Jordan Farmar, and I wouldn’t be surprised if they made a minor deal. Just don’t expect a blockbuster.

As for the Knicks, they will keep looking but I’d be very surprised if they can find a deal for Anthony by the Feb. 23 deadline. Which will make Krisptaps Porzingis happy.

Jazz boost international bona fides with new minor-league coach

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SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Martin Schiller has been named coach of the Salt Lake City Stars, the Utah Jazz’s NBA G League affiliate.

Schiller previously served as an assistant coach of MHP Riesen Ludwigsburg in Germany and replaces Dean Cooper. He was an assistant coach for the Artland Dragons from 2010-15.

Schiller has also been an assistant coach on the German National Team since 2015, where he worked with Jazz assistant coach Alex Jensen.

Schiller hails from Vienna, Austria, and Stars vice president of basketball operations Bart Taylor lauded him for his international experience and player development background.

The Jazz organization is known to have close relationships with the international basketball community. The Jazz currently have eight international players.

Kyrie Irving will wear No. 11 with Celtics

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BOSTON (AP) — Newly acquired guard Kyrie Irving will wear No. 11 in Boston because the Celtics already have retired the numbers he wore in college and with the Cleveland Cavaliers.

Irving wore No. 11 at two New Jersey high schools before switching to No. 1 at Duke. He wore No. 2 with the Cavaliers for the first six years of his NBA career.

The Celtics retired No. 1 for founder and original owner Walter Brown. They retired No. 2 for former coach and general manager Red Auerbach.

In all, the Celtics have retired 21 numbers, with Paul Pierce’s No. 34 next in line for the TD Garden rafters.

 

PBT Extra: Cavaliers’ new GM aces first big test with Kyrie Irving trade

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Everyone in the NBA — heck, nearly everyone living in the Western hemisphere — knew Kyrie Irving wanted out of Cleveland. That should kill the Cavaliers’ leverage and make it hard to get enough quality back.

New GM Koby Altman — the guy thrust into the job when David Griffin was shown the door — pulled it off brilliantly.

That’s what I talk about in this new PBT Extra. With Isaiah Thomas and Jae Crowder, the Cavaliers remain the team to beat in the East this season. The Brooklyn Nets pick gives them flexibility going forward, whatever LeBron James decides to do next season.

First time at the plate in the big leagues and Altman crushed it to straight away center field.

Cavaliers-Celtics deal first offseason trade involving players who just met in NBA Finals or conference finals

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The Cavaliers and Celtics played in last year’s Eastern Conference finals. The teams were widely expected to meet there again.

Yet, Cleveland and Boston just completed a blockbuster trade – Kyrie Irving for Isaiah Thomas, Jae Crowder, Ante Zizic and the Nets’ 2018 first-round pick.

That seemed odd.

In fact, it’s unprecedented.

That is an incredible fact, one which speaks to LeBron Jamescachet. The Cavs are emphasizing this season, LeBron’s last before a player option, by loading up with veterans Thomas and Crowder. With LeBron still reigning in Cleveland, the Celtics are delaying their peak by acquiring the younger Irving.

Adding to the intrigue: the Cavs and Celtics are still favored to meet in this year’s conference finals. At minimum, they’ll face off in a(n even more) highly anticipated opening-night matchup.