Author: Kurt Helin

Los Angeles Lakers v Minnesota Timberwolves

Report: Add the Clippers to the list of teams pursuing Corey Brewer (with Rockets, Cavs)


When Kevin Martin went down injured, the Minnesota Timberwolves quickly squelched their Corey Brewer trade talks with teams like the Rockets and Cavaliers. The Timberwolves needed him in the rotation with Martin and Ricky Rubio injured.

However, as the last month wore on Minnesota coach/GM Flip Saunders realized that with or without Brewer the 5-19 Timberwolves are terrible, so they might as well get something for him. There was still demand.

The Timberwolves have re-opened trade talks and invited the Los Angeles Clippers to the table also, reports Marc Stein and Brian Windhorst of ESPN.

The Minnesota Timberwolves have put veteran swingman Corey Brewer back on the trading block, according to league sources…

The Houston Rockets and Cleveland Cavaliers, sources said, remain the most interested suitors for Brewer, but have also been joined by the Los Angeles Clippers….

Houston and Cleveland remain the best positioned to make a deal because both teams possess an active trade exception large enough to absorb Brewer’s $4.7 million salary. But sources say that the Wolves are seeking a future first-round pick in exchange for Brewer, something the Cavaliers are reluctant to surrender. The Rockets, sources say, hope to sell Minnesota on going through with the swap in exchange for a 2015 second-rounder via New York that the Rockets possess. It’s a pick with the potential to be attractive come June given the Knicks’ ongoing struggles.

The Cavaliers news conflicts with other recent reports that the Rockets were active but the Cavaliers had faded from the picture. (Two different reports suggest two different leakers, one that wants it to sound like the Cavaliers are in it and one that wants them to sound out of it. It’s easy to subscribe a lot of motivations to those leakers.)

The Clippers are new to the party, and it will be much harder for them to make a deal. When they used their mid-level exception on Spencer Hawes this summer they triggered a hard cap on themselves at just more than $80 million, and right now they are close to that line (ESPN has the Clippers at $800,000 away, while says they are $1.7 million away). Corey Brewer is making $4.7 million this season and the Clippers would have to send back salary the Timberwolves do not want in the deal. Finding a third team makes things very complex.

Both the Rockets and Cavaliers are looking for upgrades on the wing, where Brewer is solid but not spectacular. What he does well is leak out and get long passes for easy buckets (he and Kevin Love have a great history from Minnesota on that), and he gets a lot of his shots (46 percent) near the rim where he finishes well. However, once you get beyond three feet and into his jumper both his shot selection and percentage of makes drops off fast. Defensively he’s okay but likes to gamble.

Expect to see a deal, maybe sooner rather than later, although Saunders can milk this for a while and see if he can get more by playing one team off another.

Report: Rondo “open” to re-signing in Dallas, Houston if traded there

Boston Celtics Vs. Orlando Magic At TD Garden

It’s one of the reasons the steep asking price the Celtics have consistently requested for Rajon Rondo lately has not been met — teams were afraid he wanted to play the field in free agency next summer and would bolt them (Rondo is in the final year of his contract and is an unrestricted free agent July 1). You’re not going to give up quality assets for someone you can’t keep.

However, Dallas and Houston might well be able to keep him.

The Mavericks are in “substantive” discussions with the Celtics about Rondo, while Houston has always lurked on the fringes of the discussions. But if he went to those cities he might well re-sign with them, reports Ken Berger of

With Celtics president Danny Ainge seriously engaging several teams on Rondo trade scenarios, a league source told Thursday that the point guard is open to re-signing with at least two of them — the Mavericks and Rockets….

Given Rondo’s looming unrestricted free agency, any deal would have to come with assurances that he’d be willing to re-sign with his new team. While those discussions have yet to take place with agent Bill Duffy since no trade agreement is in place, a person familiar with Rondo’s thinking said the possibility of competing for championships in Dallas or Houston intrigues him.

Officially Rondo is denying he even wants a trade, saying to reporters in Boston last night — including PBT’s own Dan Feldman — about these kinds of trade rumors, “It’s a way of life since I’ve been here.”

But Celtics GM Danny Ainge knows he’s likely to lose Rondo this summer as an unrestricted free agent and is motivated to make a move — Boston is rebuilding and contenders are going to come knocking on his door. Not to mention teams like the Lakers — Rondo could get a huge offer to come and help lead the team past the Kobe Bryant era (and play with Kobe for a season or two). Ainge has to get something for him.

Dallas and Houston are among the teams motivated to get something done. They see Golden State and Memphis on top of the West early, they know the Spurs will at some point become closer to the Spurs of last year (if not get all the way back), they see the Clippers, and both teams realize they will need more to get out of this conference and get a chance to win a title in the short term.

A Boston trade with Dallas reportedly would involved Brandan Wright and other players to make the salaries work out (Raymond Felton does it perfectly) plus there would need to be multiple picks in this deal, like a couple first rounders. Dallas does have all their picks and could make the move. With Rondo’s playmaking — setting up Monta Ellis, Dirk Nowitzki and Chandler Parsons — and defense Dallas would become a much bigger threat in the already loaded Western Conference. Same is true of Houston — Rondo would make Dwight Howard and James Harden’s lives much easier and there wouldn’t be a defensive drop off.

Dallas apparently would have a good chance to re-sign Rondo, although they are smart enough to talk some off-the-record dollars with his agent to get an idea if a deal could be reached this summer. (That would be done through back channels to avoid tampering.)

Ainge and the Celtics have seemingly come close to dealing Rondo before only not to pull the trigger. Don’t be shocked if they try to use the Lakers (Steve Nash’s $9.7 million plus one of their two first round picks this year) or Knicks or Rockets (lots of young players and picks) as leverage to get more out of Dallas. But with Rondo’s free agency looming there is more pressure on Boston to make a move now than there has been in the past.

Nick Young, son have matching Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles pajamas

Nick Young


Caption from Nick Young’s Instagram: “It’s that time of year … Hot chocolate and onesies and ninja turtles”

Shouldn’t pizza be part of that equation?

Maybe it’s because all my children are girls, but this time of year does not include the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, it’s more Santa based. There are some reindeer thrown in.

Still, that is awesome. And so Nick Young.