Cavaliers trade Keith Bogans and a second round pick to Sixers

8 Comments

When the Cavaliers traded three non-guaranteed deals to the Celtics in exchange for Keith Bogans just a couple of days ago, it was believed to be a wise move aimed at putting the team in position to add even more talent next summer.

Bogans has $5.5 million in non-guaranteed money owed to him for the 2015-16 season, and that contract, combined with the $10.5 million in non-guaranteed money that same season which remains on Brendan Haywood’s deal, was believed to be something that Cleveland could use as a powerful trade chip to acquire another max-level player once this upcoming season is finished.

As it turns out, that wasn’t the plan after all.

Cleveland traded Bogans and a 2018 second round pick to the Sixers on Saturday, in exchange for Philadelphia’s 2015 second round pick, which has protections assigned to it. Philadelphia confirmed the details in an official release.

The Cavaliers will get a $5.3 million trade exception, but it’s not something that can be combined (with Haywood’s deal, for example) in order to acquire additional players.

From Jason Lloyd of the Akron Beacon Journal:

The move gives the Cavs a $5.3 million trade exception without taking up a roster spot.

Bogans was just acquired on Thursday in exchange for four players and two second-round picks, but one league source with knowledge of the situation indicated the Cavs never had much interest in keeping Bogans on the roster. By moving him now, they’ll have one year to use the exception.

The exception cannot be combined with any other players, meaning they cannot combine it with Brendan Haywood’s non-guaranteed contract next summer. But the Cavs feel Haywood’s $10.5 million non-guaranteed contract by itself will be large enough to obtain any player they could realistically pursue.

So, why go to all this trouble if you’re Cleveland? To stay out of luxury tax territory this season.

The move is a cost-cutting one, but also keeps an eye on future flexibility, as well. The new collective bargaining agreement has a nasty repeater tax penalty in place for teams who exceed the cap in three of the four previous seasons, so you want to prevent that clock from starting for as long as possible.

Tax-paying teams also face restrictions in terms of what they can do from a roster maneuverability standpoint, which include not getting to use the bi-annual exception, having a smaller mid-level exception than non-tax-payers, and being prohibited from receiving a player in a sign-and-trade transaction.

By dealing Bogans, Cleveland creates a trade exception, stays under the tax line, and leaves an open spot on the roster.

New GM David Griffin may not have had much to do with getting LeBron James to return home, or even acquiring Kevin Love to play alongside him. But moves like these show that he clearly knows what he’s doing.

Rumor: Patrick Beverley may meet with five teams before Clippers

Getty Images
1 Comment

The Los Angeles Clippers want to bring Patrick Beverley back next season, his spark was at the heart of why this team made the playoffs and impressed with their potential.

First, however, the Clippers are going big game hunting for the likes of Kawhi Leonard and/or Kevin Durant (even with the Achilles injury). Beverley isn’t just going to sit around and wait for them, reports longtime NBA reporter Sean Deveney Tweeted.

The Bulls need a point guard and Beverley — a Chicago native — has said he is interested.

The Lakers also are reportedly big game hunting, but Beverley is the kind of guard they could use around LeBron James and Anthony Davis. Phoenix and other teams have been mentioned.

Beverley is going to have options, but he loved his time with the Clippers last season, and that means something.

Pelicans reportedly pick up option year on coach Alvin Gentry

Associated Press
Leave a comment

David Griffin, the guy with the hammer in New Orleans, likes Alvin Gentry. They have a relationship that goes back to Phoenix, where Gentry was the coach and Griffin was in the front office (and was eventually GM).

Gentry also has a style of play — he wants to run and be up-tempo. That should fit very well with soon-to-be No. 1 draft pick Zion Williamson.

So it shouldn’t be a surprise the Griffin and the Pelicans want to keep Gentry around, as reported by Malika Andrews of ESPN.

This is another smart, stabilizing move by Griffin. The Pelicans want to build an athletic, fast-paced team and Gentry is the right coach for that style.  Maybe it doesn’t pan out, maybe the Pelicans ultimately need to go another direction with their coach, but right now this seems a good fit.

Report: Utah “frontrunner” to land Mike Conley Jr. if Memphis trades him this week

Getty Images
1 Comment

Utah feels like it is close — a 50-win team two seasons in a row, an elite defense, an All-NBA center in Rudy Gobert and an elite shot creator in Donovan Michell. They look at the West next season, with a depleted Warriors team, and see an opening.

Yet when Utah fell to Houston 4-1 in the first round of the playoffs this year, it was reminded of what is keeping the team from being truly elite, and another shot creator and shooter is at the top of that list.

Enter Mike Conley Jr. He averaged 21.1 points and 6.4 assists per game last season, shot 36.4 percent from three, and plays strong defense. Conley would be an upgrade over Ricky Rubio at the spot.

The almost All-Star point guard out of Memphis is available via trade. He’s the kind of veteran floor general, shooter, and shot creator Utah could use. The Jazz and Grizzlies talked but couldn’t come to an agreement at the trade deadline, but the sides are talking again and conversations are “intensifying” in the run-up to the NBA Draft Thursday, reports Shams Charania of The Athletic.

The Grizzlies are intensifying talks to potentially move franchise cornerstone Mike Conley Jr., league sources told The Athletic. Memphis has been in conversations with the Jazz and Utah is a frontrunner to acquire Conley should the Grizzlies trade the point guard during draft week, league sources said.

What would be in a trade package? Certainly the No. 23 pick in this draft, plus some young players the Grizzlies like (maybe Grayson Allen, Royce O’Neal, and even someone like Jae Crowder. Reports say Derick Favors is not part of the discussion.

While anything can happen the week of the draft — and things change quickly — don’t be surprised if some version of this trade gets done.

Kawhi Leonard wins day with last laugh — his viral laugh — at end of speech

1 Comment

Kawhi Leonard just won again.

He won his second NBA title leading the Toronto Raptors to the franchise’s first crown. He earned his second Finals MVP in the process.

Then on Monday he had the last laugh and won the Raptors’ championship parade in Toronto by ending his speech with his laugh, the same one that went viral at the start of the season.

Of course, what Leonard will do on July 1 was a cloud hanging over the parade, Leonard is a free agent this summer. Kyle Lowry at one point started a “five more years” chant during the parade, which is the maximum number of years Toronto can re-sign Leonard for.

Leonard, exactly as we all should have expected, dodged the question, while praising his time in Toronto.

Unfortunately, this was a parade marred by more serious concerns.