Tag: New York Knicks

Houston Rockets v Dallas Mavericks

Report: Mavericks shake up Rockets’ free-agent plans, agree to offer sheet with Chandler Parsons


The Houston Rockets made a calculated risk when they declined Chandler Parsons’ team option and made him a restricted free agent this offseason rather than letting him becoming an unrestricted free agent next summer.

Had Houston simply picked up Parsons’ option, he would have counted safely at just $964,750 against the cap this offseason. Instead, he counts at $2,875,130 until his new contract goes into effect. When it does, his 2014-15 salary will become his cap number, and that will be much higher.

Essentially the Rockets were betting Parsons would patiently wait an offer. Houston would sign an outside free agent first and then exceed the cap to re-sign Parsons.

That plan might have backfired.

Marc Stein of ESPN:

David Aldridge of NBA.com:

On a three-year contract, Parsons’ max is $46,164,000, so this is a max contract or close to it. Parsons’ max starting salary is $ 14,725,359 – a heck of a lot more than $2,875,130.

The easy path for the Rockets is signing a top free agent during the 72-hour period they have to match, and then they can go over the cap to keep Parsons.

But that’s predicated on other free agents deciding so quickly. Houston might not get everything to line up so conveniently.

If the Rockets match, they’ll be out of the race for any elite free agents and likely anyone who commands more than the mid-level exception. Carmelo Anthony reportedly plans to re-sign with the Knicks, so there’s likely no dilemma there.

But what happens if LeBron James – and therefore Chris Bosh – is still in flux? Would the Rockets match Parsons’ offer? Or would they let him leave on the chance they can get Bosh?

Daryl Morey backed himself into a corner.

The Mavericks might be hamstringing themselves, too. That’s a lot of money to pay Parsons if Houston doesn’t match – though, if Gordon Hayward deserves a max contract, Parsons probably does, too. Those two have similar value.

For the most part, I like the deal for Dallas, even if it hinders long-term flexibility. The Mavericks are trying to maximize Dirk Nowitzki’s final years. Trading for Tyson Chandler was a good step, and this would be another. Parsons is a solid all-around player who immediately makes the team better.

Plus, if the Rockets match and miss out on a premier free agent, Mark Cuban can take pride in making life difficult for a rival.

Value of max contracts for 2014 NBA free agents

Miami Heat v New York Knicks

I previously explained and estimated the value of max contracts this summer, but that was based on the projected salary cap.

Now that the cap has been set, we can determine actual max salaries.

Remember, a max salary is determined by experience and previous salary. Just two free agents – Dirk Nowitzki and Carmelo Anthony – had high enough 2013-14 salaries to exceed the max based on years of experience.

Here are the values of max contracts for Nowitzki, Melo and everyone else based on years of experience (updated with precise amounts the NBA provided teams):

0-6 years

Year Re-sign Leave
One $14,746,000 $14,746,000
Two $15,851,950 $15,409,570
Three $16,957,900 $16,073,140
Four $18,063,850 $16,736,710
Five $19,169,800
Total $84,789,500 $62,965,420

7-9 years

Year Re-sign Leave
One $17,695,200 $17,695,200
Two $19,022,340 $18,491,484
Three $20,349,480 $19,287,768
Four $21,676,620 $20,084,052
Five $23,003,760
Total $101,747,400 $75,558,504

10+ years

Year Re-sign Leave
One $20,644,400 $20,644,400
Two $22,192,730 $21,573,398
Three $23,741,060 $22,502,396
Four $25,289,390 $23,431,394
Five $26,837,720
Total $118,705,300 $88,151,588

Dirk Nowitzki (plans to sign three-year, $30 million contract)

Year Re-sign Leave
One $23,857,450 $23,857,450
Two $25,646,759 $24,931,035
Three $27,436,068 $26,004,621
Four $29,225,376 $27,078,206
Five $31,014,685
Total $137,180,338 $101,871,312

Carmelo Anthony (reportedly plans to re-sign with Knicks)

Year Re-sign Leave
One $22,458,402 $22,458,402
Two $24,142,782 $23,469,030
Three $25,827,162 $24,479,658
Four $27,511,542 $25,490,286
Five $29,195,922
Total $129,135,810 $95,897,375

If you’re wondering about LeBron James and Chris Bosh (and maybe even Dwyane Wade), the Heat’s stars can get the max for players with 10+ years experience.

Charlie Villanueva launches ‘Crossroads’ webisode series documenting his free agency experience (VIDEO)

Charlie Villanueva

Charlie Villanueva is an unrestricted free agent this summer, and he (like everyone else) is waiting for the decisions of LeBron James and Carmelo Anthony before teams will begin to execute plans to fill out their regular season rosters.

In Villanueva’s case, he’s likely to be further down the list, but hopes to prove he still has plenty to contribute when NBA teams come calling. He was used sparingly in Detroit over the last three seasons, and will likely need to work out for teams to show what he can do before securing his next deal in free agency.

Whatever happens along the way should be fascinating, and Villanueva is documenting it all with an eight-part video blog series entitled “Crossroads,” in a nod to where he finds himself at this stage of his career.

Check out the trailer for the series in the video clip above, and head over to Villanueva’s blog to check out Episode 1 in its entirety, which features a conversation with his agent Jeff Schwartz, footage of his workouts, and some of his personal thoughts as he begins to deal with this process.

Reports: It’s LeBron, agent, Pat Riley alone in a room Wednesday afternoon In Vegas

LeBron James

Everything else is just chatter.

There have moves to lay the foundations in Cleveland and Miami — trades to clear cap space, and mid-level exception signings — but those are just part of the storm swirling around the periphery, not the thing at the center. Then there are the rumors of what his agent wants or his wife wants, dream trade scenarios, superstars holding out fantasies of joining forces, and none of that really matters.

What matters is what’s in LeBron James’ head and he has been silent. Here’s what we do know — Pat Riley and LeBron James are meeting in Vegas today and it’s a small group.

That means no Dwyane Wade, no owner Micky Arison. Just the guys with the real power across the table from each other (and their right hand men). What does that mean? Nobody really knows. What you think it means really says more about what you want to come out of this meeting than it does the actual meeting itself.

Here are my thoughts as we wait for a meeting that may provide some clarity and be the first domino in free agency.

• What matters here is what LeBron wants — more than any other superstar (save maybe Kobe) LeBron runs his own show now. He listens to others, but this is a more mature LeBron than the one that left Cleveland four years ago. LeBron steers his own ship and this will be his call and his call alone.

• LeBron knows that Kyrie Irving is better than anyone on the Heat right now, but he also knows that the rest of that Cavs roster is young and untested (and Minnesota isn’t looking for picks or rookies in a Kevin Love deal). If he’s on Cleveland they are contenders, one of the best teams in the East, but is he closer to a title next season than he would be in Miami? Could they beat the best in the West? Is that move lateral on the court in the short term?

• Are Josh McRoberts and Danny Granger a big upgrade? No. It’s about the best Riley could do acting like a capped out team, but it’s not that impressive.

• In 2016 what is expected to be a much-increased new national television deal is going to kick in and flood the system with cash — the salary cap will jump, and as max salaries are a percentage of the cap they will jump also. Meaning a max contract in two years is worth a lot more than one today.

• A lot of people around LeBron want him to return to Cleveland. Remember when LeBron was in Cleveland before he and his posse had the complete run of the place, they had real power. Miami doesn’t work that way, it’s Pat Riley’s show (and the city is sloppy with celebrities). Some people would love that power and attention again. Question is does LeBron?

• Outside of the obvious Miami fans complaints (how many notice before the season starts next year?), if you want to know what the backlash to LeBron going to Cleveland looks like, it looks like what J.A. Adande wrote at ESPN. That he surrendered his leverage as league spokesman. It’s not just the Dan Gilbert letter, it’s Gilbert was a hard liner in the last CBA negotiations that LeBron railed against.

• For all those reasons — and what most around the league said — I used to think a return to the Cavs this summer was a long shot at best. It’s not anymore, it’s a very real possibility. LeBron himself may not be speaking but he apparently did reach out to veterans to see if they want to come to Cleveland. He is considering it. Seriously considering.

• Carmelo Anthony is waiting — if LeBron chooses Miami Chris Bosh is expected to return to South Beach too, but if LeBron goes to Miami and Bosh goes to Houston anyway Anthony might squeeze into Miami. Also, I might win the Powerball Lottery. Close to the same odds, but ‘Melo is holding on to his ticket.

• My guess (and that of others around the league) is LeBron re-signs for two max years in Miami, and we do this all again in 2016. And the Cavs very well could win then, although it’s hard to see that far into the future in an ever-shifting NBA landscape.

Josh Howard joins Pelicans’ Summer League team trying to get back in NBA

Josh Howard Jazz

Josh Howard, at age 34 and after multiple ACL surgeries, is not giving up on the dream.

The former NBA All-Star with 10 years of service (he was in the LeBron James/Carmelo Anthony draft class) played 24 games for the Austin Toros last season in the D-League, looking to impress some NBA team into giving the veteran a shot. He scored 14.7 points per game but needed 13.3 shots a game to get there, and he struggled from three. He was decent, but there were no calls to come up to the show.

So now he’s headed to Las Vegas as part of the Pelican’s Summer League team trying to get back into the league. Howard spoke with Jimmy Smith of the Times-Picayune about the chance and how bad he wants it after lat season.

“To fight through all that adversity: the travel was rough, playing in different arenas, that whole avenue of being in the NBA for 10 years and having to go down to the D-League. . . .

“Riding those AAU vans was a humbling experience,” Howard said. “That right there was a motivation in itself. I just took it and ran with it. I couldn’t finish the season because I had a sports hernia, but that was like the last month. I played pretty much every day.”

He’s chosen wisely. The Pelicans don’t have a lot of money to spend and could use help off the bench at the three. Howard fits that mold… if he can still play at an NBA level. And stay healthy.

He’s got competition, the Pelican’s Summer League team has about six guys who are threes on it. They are trying to get a good look at their options.

If it’s not in the Big Easy, Howard isn’t done playing — he loves the game and wants to keep on ballin’.

“I plan on making a comeback. That’s my motivation,” Howard said. “Ultimately, it’s up to the GMs and the coaches to put me on the team. As far as me being prepared and being ready, I put myself in a position to be like that. Whatever happens. Pelicans, D-League, overseas. Whatever happens, just to have the opportunity to play the game that I love. You can’t beat that.”

Got to love that attitude.