bogut mavericks

Report: Jose Calderon, Andrew Bogut targets of Cavaliers, but trades may be difficult

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Carmelo Anthony isn’t coming.

That doesn’t mean Cleveland has given up on the idea of a trade that would help them in the NBA Finals. They are in an arms race with the Warriors and one of those teams added Kevin Durant. The Cavaliers are looking at some solid backups who can provide depth — Jose Calderon andAndrew Bogut — reports Marc Stein if ESPN.

Los Angeles Lakers guard Jose Calderon and Dallas Mavericks center Andrew Bogut, league sources tell ESPN.com, have emerged as two players who greatly interest the Cavs in their search for bench help.

The NBA’s reigning champions, who come face-to-face with ‎Anthony in Saturday night’s ABC showcase game at Madison Square Garden, are also closely monitoring Bogut teammate Deron Williams….

The Cavs know trading for Calderon, Bogut or Williams is highly unlikely given Cleveland’s various salary-cap and asset limitations. The best they can realistically hope for is that one or more of those three gets bought out after the trade deadline and eventually hits the free-agent market.

The Cavaliers don’t have a first-round pick to trade until 2021 (they sent 2019 to Atlanta for Kyle Korver) and the only player on the roster who they would move and might be of interest is Iman Shumpert. Who hasn’t drawn that much interest.

But few teams are as active heading into the trade deadline as the Cavaliers. No matter the cost. Charles Barkley and others may call LeBron James a whiner, but lost amid all the bluster is the fact LeBron is right. The Cavs need more help if the goal is a title. And GM David Griffin is trying.

DeMarcus Cousins answers first several Kings-related questions same way (video)

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DeMarcus Cousins had a bitter exit from the Kings, but that won’t be the last they see of him.

Cousins’ Pelicans will host Sacramento tomorrow night.

Not that Cousins rushed to talk about the matchup.

Justin Verrier of ESPN:

Cousins is pretty funny when joking with the media, and his smile is contagious. Just listen to all the laughs Cousins generates as he goes through his shtick.

Bonus points to Cousins for eventually breaking down and providing real answers. Some of his relationships in Sacramento were clearly meaningful to him, and he wanted to acknowledge those — even if he’d prefer just to get past this awkward game and all the talk it invites.

Report: Sweet-shooting 7-footer Lauri Markkanen leaving Arizona for NBA draft

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Lauri Markkanen is 7-foot and made 42% of his 3-pointers this season.

That combination alone will have NBA teams drooling, and the Arizona freshman will capitalize.

Evan Daniels of Scout:

Arizona’s Lauri Markkanen is declaring for the NBA Draft and is expected to sign with an agent, multiple sources told Scout.

Markkanen seems pretty certain to get picked in the lottery, likely in the top 10.

Calling him a good shooter for his height undersells him. It’s not just he shoots so efficiently from deep, it’s that he can generate 3-pointers in so many ways — pick-and-pops, spot-ups, off off-ball screens and even running pick-and-rolls himself. Having the height to shoot over defenders is his most noticeable asset, but don’t undersell his mobility.

Markkanen also finishes well at the rim and offensively rebounds at extremely impressive clip for someone who spends so much time on the perimeter. Those interior skills instill belief he will eventually become a suitable defender.

There are a couple red flags. He’s old for a freshman, turning 20 before the draft. He leaves plenty to be desired defensively, especially due to his lack of strength.

But his size and shooting are tantalizing. That’s plenty for now.

Dwyane Wade wowed by jumping, around-the-back alley-oop pass in McDonald’s All-American Game (video)

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Watch for Collin Sexton in the 2018 NBA draft.

In the meantime, the Alabama commit had all eyes — include Dwyane Wade‘s — on him with this pass in the McDonald’s All-American Game last night.

Carmelo Anthony on shrinking role with Knicks: ‘I see the writing on the wall… I’m at peace with that’

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Carmelo Anthony scored just nine points on 12 shots in the Knicks loss to the Heat last night — well below his season averages of 22 points on 19 shots per game.

Anthony, via Ian Begley of ESPN:

“I see the writing on the wall. I see what it is,” Anthony said late Wednesday night. “I see what they’re trying to do, and it’s just me accepting that. That’s what puts me at peace. Just knowing and understanding how things work. I’m at peace with that.”

Is Anthony talking about just the Knicks’ final dozen games of this season, when they’re clearly interesting in testing less-proven players? Or is he referring to his entire tenure in New York?

Anthony has said he’d consider waiving his no-trade clause if the Knicks want to rebuild, and they’ll reportedly try again to trade him this offseason. Perhaps, this is Anthony indicating he’s warming up to the idea of allowing a trade.

Anthony’s and Kristaps Porzingis‘ timelines are barely compatible, if at all. It’d make sense for the Knicks to go in a different direction.

Could Anthony be at peace with that?