NBA Trade Deadline Tracker: All the deals, rumors, reports in one place

Los Angeles Lakers v Brooklyn Nets
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The NBA trade deadline has passed, and it was a wild one — including the massive Harden for Simmons deal coming together.

Here is a wrap-up of all the trades.

TRADE: It happened, Ben Simmons has been traded to Brooklyn for James Harden

Brooklyn receives: Ben Simmons, Seth Curry, Andre Drummond, two first-round picks.
Philadelphia receives: James Harden, Paul Millsap

Analysis: The Nets were not going to trade James Harden unless two things happened: He demanded out, and then someone — specifically the 76ers — blew them away with an offer. Well, Harden’s behavior showed he wanted out of Brooklyn and he all but wrote a formal letter, and on deadline day the 76ers stepped up with an offer that not only included Simmons but sharpshooter Seth Curry and big man Andre Drummond, but also the 76ers unprotected 2022 first-round draft pick (which the Nets can defer to 2023) and the 76ers 2027 first-rounder (protected 1-8).

That was enough and the blockbuster deal got done.

For the 76ers, they pair Embiid — who his playing at an MVP level — with Harden, and they are betting on a happy Harden transformation into his old self (like we saw a year ago when he was traded from Houston to Brooklyn, after forcing his way off the Rockets). Pair those two with Tyrese Maxey in his breakout year, Matisse Thybulle, Tobias Harris (overpaid but still can get buckets as a third option) and role players such as Shake Milton and Furkan Korkmaz, and the 76ers have to be considered contenders in the East. Embiid had this parting message for Simmons.

The Nets have to be considered contenders, too, once Kevin Durant returns from his knee injury after the All-Star break. Simmons elite defense and passing should fit well with the isolation scoring of Durant and (part-time) Irving, Seth Curry steps into the Joe Harris sharpshooter role (Harris may not be back this season), and Drummond is another option for Doc Rivers along the frontline, with LaMarcus Aldridge, Nic Claxton, or just going small with Durant at the five. All season long it’s been a lot about the Nets getting healthy and energized, this should do it.

Bottom line: Throw in the already focused Bucks and Nets, and the East playoffs will be insane.

Feb. 10, 3:01 PM: No trades for Lakers, Knicks at deadline

The biggest name teams in the NBA’s two biggest markets need a shakeup but… nothing. Both the Los Angeles Lakers and New York Knicks stood pat, but that probably is the right decision.

For the Lakers, after a nationally televised loss to the Bucks Tuesday showed how far from contention the team is, there was a “trade Russell Westbrook, we’ve got to do something” panic going around. That’s not when smart trades are made (and sending out a first-round pick or taking on another bad contract to swap Westbrook for Wall would have been a bad trade). The Lakers wisely stepped back — as they did with the buzz around firing Frank Vogel a month ago — and said, “will this make us markedly better?” The answer was no. It was much the same process and thinking in New York. The Knicks (and their fans) are rightfully frustrated that Evan Fournier and Julius Randle are not playing up to their new contracts, but trading them out of frustration would lead to bigger mistakes. No reasonable offers for either player came through, so New York remained patient. Better to make a more reasoned move in the offseason.

TRADE: Mavericks trade Kristaps Porzingis to Wizards for Dinwiddie, Bertans

Dallas receives: Spencer Dinwiddie, Davis Bertans
Washington receives: Kristaps Porzingis

Analysis: This is a “you take the contracts we don’t like, we’ll take that one you don’t like” trade. Dallas pictured Porzingis as the No. 2 option and a pick-and-pop partner with Luka Doncic, and KP has been an All-Star level player when healthy (he’s averaging 19.2 points and 7.7 rebounds a game this season), but he has barely been healthy. And not the fit Dallas hoped. Porzingis is making $31.7 million this season and is owed $69.8 million over the coming two years (the second year of that is a player option, but he’s going to pick that up). Now Porzingis has Ish Smith as his starting point guard and can see if he fits next to Bradley Beal next season.

Washington signed Bertans away from the Spurs to be a quality stretch four, but he has missed time due to injuries, has been more of a sixth man, is shooting 31.9% from 3 this season, and makes $16 million this season and will make $49 million fully guaranteed over the next three seasons. The Wizards bet on Dinwiddie being all the way back from his torn ACL when they signed him to a three-year, $54 million (it was technically a sign-and-trade with Brooklyn). Dinwiddie averages 12.6 points and 5.8 assists a game, but he isn’t as explosive as he once was and was never much of a shooter. Dallas is betting on their medical team, and another year away from his ACL tear, will see Dinwiddie bounce back.

Two interesting thoughts out of this. Will Goran Dragic (about to be bought out by the Spurs) look at the Mavs getting Dinwiddie and re-think signing there? It probably doesn’t change anything, but the Bulls, Bucks, Clippers and others will at least call. Also, does bringing in Dinwiddie mean Dallas doesn’t think it can keep Jalen Brunson this offseason?

TRADE: Celtics trade Dennis Schroder to Rockets for Theis

Boston receives: Daniel Theis
Houston receives: Dennis Schroder, Enes Freedom Kanter, Bruno Fernando

Analysis: Boston has needed to trade Schroder because they could not re-sign him this offseason (they can only offer about $7 million, because they do not have his Bird rights), and the open market likely will offer more than that. This trade sends the German point guard to Houston, where he will back up the developing Kevin Porter Jr. the rest of the season. Houston wanted off the contract of Daniel Theis, who has $26.7 due over three years after this one (the last year of that is a team option). He struggled to find a role with the Rockets but was a solid big man for the Celtics in his three-and-a-half years there and Boston believes it can get him healthy and return him to a reserve big man role where he can thrive again. Kanter is in this trade just to balance the money and will be bought out by the Rockets, making him a free agent.

TRADE: Boston trades Richardson to San Antonio for Derrick White

San Antonio receives: Josh Richardson, Romeo Langford, 2022 first-round pick
Boston receives: Derrick White

Analysis: Derrick White is a good young player — a starter for the Spurs averaging 14.4 points per game, and he defends well — who can play a role in Boston’s future backcourt rotation. However, for the Celtics, this trade was about saving money. With this deal, the Celtics move even further out of the luxury tax, now by about $3 million (the salary dump of PJ Dozier and Bol Bol got them under the line). The price for those savings is the first-round pick, which is top-four protected, so it almost certainly conveys to the Spurs this season (San Antonio also picked up the Raptors’ first-round pick this season helping them get under the tax line today). Gregg Popovich can also see if he can develop (and keep healthy) Langford, who has shown flashes of promise.

TRADE: Massive four-team deal sends DiVincenzo to Kings, Bagley to Pistons

Sacramento receives: Donte DiVincenzo, Trey Lyles and Josh Jackson.
Milwaukee receives: Serge Ibaka, two future second-round picks, cash.
LA Clippers receive: Rodney Hood, Semi Ojele.
Detroit receives: Marvin Bagley Jr.

Analysis: The Kings are all in on their long-shot push to make the play-in — as evidenced by their trade for Domantas Sabonis — and this fits in with that. DiVincenzo is a quality two-way two guard who can both help them this season and be a long-term fit next to De'Aaron Fox. The Clippers will save about $30 million in luxury tax payments this year with this trade (which more than makes up for the $19 million they added in the Norman Powell/Robert Covington trade). The Bucks add some center depth with Ibaka (that matters with Brook Lopez still out) and they get a couple of picks in the process. The Pistons take a flier on Bagley, who they should be able to re-sign cheaply if they want. Bagley’s dad is excited about this trade, but it doesn’t solve the core problem that the game has evolved away from his son’s skill set.

TRADE: Boston gets under the luxury tax line with salary dump to Magic

Orlando receives: P.J. Dozier, Bol Bol, second-round pick, cash
Boston receives: Second-round pick

Analysis: This is a pretty much straight salary dump — both Dozier and Bol are out for the season due to injury. This trade gets the Celtics barely under the luxury tax line, and the Magic get a second-round pick and a little cash for their troubles.

TRADE: Goran Dragic traded to Spurs for Thaddeus Young, pick

Toronto receives: Thaddeus Young, Drew Eubanks, 2022 second-round pick
San Antonio receives: Goran Dragic, lottery-protected 2022 first-round pick

Analysis: Two players that were expected to be traded for each other have been swapped, along with some picks. The Spurs will arrange a buyout with Dragic fairly quickly, and he is expected to re-sign as a free agent with the Mavericks (although the Clippers, Bucks and others would have interest in him). What the Spurs get out of this is a first-round pick, the Raptors are playing well and are not headed to the lottery (their pick would be 20th right now). Thaddeus Young could have some value in the Raptors rotation, although he has struggled this season in San Antonio. The Raptors save money here, and are now $3.75 million below the luxury tax line, which was their big goal in the trade.

Feb. 10, 11:28 AM: Idea of Porzingis for Dragic trade doesn’t have legs

It has long been assumed around the league that Goran Dragic would be traded at the deadline so some team could save money by buying him out (the Raptors would take on a player with a longer contract, but one that could help them now). Then Dragic would sign with the Mavericks as a free agent. But what if the middleman was cut out? Bleacher Report’s Jake Fischer said there had been talk of some form of a Porzingis for Dragic trade working its way around the league. ESPN’s Tim MacMahon, who is well connected in Dallas, basically shot that down.

Feb. 10, 10:45 AM: Magic still asking for first-round pick for Ross, teams hope that drops at deadline

Terrence Ross, the veteran two-way wing playing for a rebuilding Orlando team, has long been on the top of the “he’ll get traded before the deadline” players, except it hasn’t happened. Interesting note from friend of the site Keith Smith as to why that hasn’t happened.

Ross is shooting 30.8% from 3 this season, no team should be giving up a first for him. The asking price may well change in the final hours.

Feb. 10, 10:12 AM: Harden wants trade out of Brooklyn, fears backlash of formal request

There’s a pattern. James Harden and Chris Paul played together and won 65 games and took the Warriors (with Kevin Durant) to seven games, but Harden didn’t like the experience and forced Houston to trade CP3 for Russell Westbrook, except Harden didn’t like that and pushed for a trade that brought John Wall to Houston. That was a disaster and at the start of last season he threw a tantrum and forced a trade to Brooklyn.

Now he does want out of Brooklyn and to be traded today to Philadelphia, but he fears the public backlash, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN. So he has been throwing a tantrum/making it clear he wants out. Again. Other reports say the Nets are still demanding not just Ben Simmons but another quality player such as Seth Curry or Matisse Thybulle to make the trade happen. It’s a staredown until the final deadline.

Feb. 10, 6:34 AM: If Lakers want to trade Westbrook for Wall, it will cost them a first-round pick

As noted a couple of items below, frustration and desperation around a squandered Lakers’ season — and Russell Westbrook turning out to be exactly who he had been the past couple of seasons, rather than who the Lakers wanted him to be — has led some in Los Angeles to consider a Westbrook for John Wall trade with the Rockets. Essentially a swap of bad contracts and players that don’t fit. Except Marc Stein reminds us in his latest newsletter that the price for that from Houston’s end is the Lakers 2027 first-round pick, or for the Lakers to take on the remaining three years of Daniel Theis’ contract ($27.6 million). What is the motivation for the Rockets to make that trade otherwise? From Houston’s perspective, they are swapping out one expensive player that is not part of their rotation for another (Westbrook would be sidelined for them, just as Wall has been), so what is the motivation other than a pick or to save money? This is just a reminder that nobody is helping out the Lakers because they feel bad for them.

If you’re looking for a trade the Lakers might do…

(First off, this trade as listed cannot happen because Reddish was just traded and under CBA rules cannot be re-aggregated with other salaries in a trade, it has to be a straight swap of matching salaries. Which could happen if the Knicks folded Kemba Walker or another player into the deal then did a straight Reddish for Kendrick Nunn swap with the Lakers, folded into the larger deal. But why? That’s a lot of moving parts and the Knicks send a lot out to get Dragic and Nunn? Seems highly unlikely.)

Feb. 10, 6:10 AM: Teams checking on Damian Lillard availability, getting shot down fast

Less than 10 minutes after news broke of the Trail Blazers trading Norman Powell and Robert Covington to the Clippers, a source from another team I was texting with said, “we should see if Damian is available, shot in the dark…” Well, teams did ask, Marc Stein reports in his latest newsletter, and the Trail Blazers have shot them all down fast. The point of the trades is to clear the decks and build a contender around Lillard, not move him, and Interim (for now) GM Joe Cronin has been in communication with Lillard since before the trades began. They are on the same page. Portland did a pretty good job tearing things down, whether they can do this rebuild is another question, but the plan was never to move on from the long-time face of the franchise.

Feb. 10, 12:50 AM: Lakers would consider Westbrook trade for Wall… if LeBron wants it

The Lakers traded for Russell Westbrook last offseason — and did not go through with a trade for Buddy Hield from the Kings — largely because LeBron James and Anthony Davis wanted and pushed for it. It backfired. It hasn’t worked out like anyone wanted; the Lakers are 26-30 (after an ugly loss to a shorthanded Trail Blazers team Wednesday night). Is it time for the Lakers to move on from Westbrook? Dave McMenamin of ESPN reported on Sportscenter that some in the Lakers’ organization want to “rip off the band-aid” and trade Westbrook. The only trade that works at this point is for John Wall in Houston, who is sitting out but has a matching salary ($44 million this season, a player option for $47 million next season that both players will pick up).

That trade only happens if LeBron wants it to. The other question LeBron, GM Rob Pelinka and everyone with the Lakers needs to ask: Does this make them meaningfully better? Or is this a trade done out of frustration and the need to “just do something?” Because those kinds of trades rarely work out well. If someone wants to argue that Wall is a better fit next to LeBron and Davis — because he is better as a catch-and-shoot player and can work off the ball — go for it, but last time they both played in the same season Westbrook put up better and more efficient numbers. Wall has not played at all season. Is he going to make a difference? Or is it better for the Lakers to wait it out, get to the offseason, and make a more reasoned and measured decision?

TRADE: Heat trade KZ Okpala to Thunder, but key is future first-round pick adjustments

Oklahoma City receives: KZ Okpala, adjustment on future first-round pick
Miami receives: Thunder’s least favorable 2026 second-round pick, adjustment on future first-round pick

Analysis: This isn’t about Okpala, a power forward who has been on the fringe of the Heat rotation for three years (he’s been in 63 games total over those years). It isn’t about the second-round pick, which will be the worst of the Thunder’s, Mavericks’ or 76ers’ pick in 2026. It’s all about the adjustments to the first-round pick — and that part is a win for both teams. This was supposed to be Miami’s 2023 first-round pick going to OKC but with a series of protections that could drag out potentially four years. Now it is a lottery-protected 2025 pick that is unprotected in 2026. For Miami, this means it could now trade its 2022 or 2023 first-round picks (or, potentially both, if the Heat pick-then-trade a player this year) for a player who could help the contending Heat win now. Miami gains a pick to trade and flexibility. The Thunder get a pick more likely to be of value in three or four years (potentially after this window of Heat contention).

REPORT: James Harden using actions, not words to say he wants out of Brooklyn

James Harden reportedly has told both the Nets and Kevin Durant he wants to be in Brooklyn with the Nets. However, Brian Windhorst of ESPN said on the network that Harden’s actions of late — the four-point game against the Kings, the stretches of lollygagging on defense, the missed games, the buzz around him of being unhappy — mean “he is screaming in every way he possibly can “I don’t want to be here. Get me out of here.” That doesn’t mean a deal is coming. Another ESPN report — this one from Adrian Wojnarowski — says no meaningful talks are going on.

There seems to be a sense around Brooklyn that their problems are fixable: Get Durant back healthy after the All-Star break, watch Kyrie Irving get more comfortable, take some of the load off Harden, get the big three playing together, get Joe Harris back (that one is iffy), get the role players comfortable, and they start winning and can make a run to the Finals. Also worth noting, Zach Lowe of ESPN has talked about tension and some animosity between the Nets and 76ers front offices because of that trade, which is another hurdle to getting a deal done. If Harden wants out, he may need to be explicit, not just act out, and it may still be too late to happen at the deadline.

TRADE: Jazz send out Ingles, get Alexander-Walker back

Utah receives: Nickeil Alexander-Walker, Juancho Hernangomez
San Antonio receives: Tomas Satoransky, 2022 second-round pick (via Memphis)
Portland receives: Joe Ingles, Elijah Hughes, 2027 second-round pick

Analysis: Everyone knew this was likely going to happen, that the Jazz would use the contract of Ingles — who is out for the season after an ACL tear — to bring back help. But moving on from a big part of the team culture is never easy, for anyone.

The Jazz are hoping Alexander-Walker can develop into a Jordan Clarkson-style scorer for them, but this isn’t a spectacular return on the court. What it does is lower their payroll, which when you count luxury taxes went down by about $11 million — new owner Ryan Smith may have money, but Salt Lake is still a relatively small market. That money matters to the Jazz. For Portland this is about doing more to clear the decks for the coming quick attempt to rebuild around Damian Lillard. The Spurs win here because they gave up a player that wasn’t part of their future and they both pick up a pick and save some money (they likely waive Satoransky).

Nike, Kyrie Irving part ways, making him a sneaker free agent

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Here’s the positive spin for Kyrie Irving: He will have the chance to remake his situation into something he’s more comfortable with during 2023. As a player, he will be an unrestricted free agent and can choose where he wants to play in coming seasons (how many teams are interested and for how many years will be interesting to see).

Irving also is a sneaker free agent — Nike has cut ties with him, reports Shams Charania of The Athletic.

Irving is happy with this.

The separation is not a surprise. Nike suspended its relationship with Irving after he Tweeted out support for an antisemitic film, did not apologize (at first), and was suspended by the Nets. Here was the company’s statement at that time:

“At Nike, we believe there is no place for hate speech and we condemn any form of antisemitism. To that end, we’ve made the decision to suspend our relationship with Kyrie Irving effective immediately and will no longer launch the Kyrie 8. We are deeply saddened and disappointed by the situation and its impact on everyone.”

Nike founder Phil Knight said it was likely the end of the company’s relationship with Irving.

That’s not a small thing by Nike, Irving has had a signature shoe line since 2014 and is reported to have a deal with Nike worth more than $10 million a season because his shoes are popular. However, his contract with the shoe giant was set to end in October 2023, and there had been reports Nike did not plan to extend that deal before this current controversy started.

Nike is already looking in a new direction, at Ja Morant.

Irving now has the chance to choose his new direction.

 

Cavaliers’ Dean Wade to miss 3-4 weeks due to shoulder injury

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In Cleveland’s search for a fifth starter to play the three next to Darius Garland, Donovan Mitchell, Evan Mobley and Jarrett Allen, Dean Wade might be the best of the group. Not that the numbers are great for him or anyone (Cedi Osman is the best statistically) but the eye test makes one think Wade could be the answer.

We’ll have to wait a while to find out as Wade will be out 3-4 weeks with an AC joint sprain in his left shoulder, the Cavaliers announced. Friday night against the Magic he suffered an aggravation to a previous injury.

Wade has been a quality floor-spacer for the Cavaliers this season, shooting 41.1% from three, and is averaging 6.4 points and 4.1 rebounds a game, playing a little more than 24 minutes a night.

When he returns, hopefully coach J.B. Bickerstaff will give him a little more run with the rest of the Cavaliers core (when they are healthy).

Donovan Mitchell is not looking back on summer, says now is happiest he’s been in league

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The New York Knicks chose not to go all-in last summer and bring Donovan Mitchell home. The kid who played his AAU games in Manhattan and grew up a Knicks fan watching games at the Garden was open to it, but the Knicks lowballed the offer and Koby Altman and the Cavaliers swooped in.

Mitchell returned to New York Sunday, but he wasn’t looking back — he’s happy where he is now in Cleveland, on one of the up-and-coming teams in the league. Via Stephan Bondy of the New York Daily News:

“What’s done is done, and I’m happy as hell to be where I’m at,” he said. “At the end of the day, this decision was made and I don’t think I’ve been happier since I’ve been in the league. But I think for me it’s always going to be motivation to come back and play well in my hometown, but you could say that about anybody. But with what happened this summer, it’s over with, it happened and I’m happy to be with the Cavaliers.”

Whether Rose holding back picks — concerned about having enough ammunition to bring in the next star to New York to go with Mitchell — was a mistake will play out over time. It depends on what bold move Rose makes next with the roster. Whatever decision he makes will be compared to the “what if” of Mitchell, fair or not.

Mitchell has been better than expected in Cleveland — averaging 28.4 points a game shooting 42.1% on 3-pointers — and has fit beautifully in the backcourt with Darius Garland, as well as with the front line of Jarrett Allen and Evan Mobley. Together those four form the cornerstone of a team that could contend for a title in the coming years. Mitchell is loving every minute of it.

That group (minus Allen, who remains out with a lower back contusion) wasn’t enough on Sunday against a desperate Knicks team. New York got the 92-81 win behind 23 from Jalen Brunson (Mitchell also had 23).

 

Three things to know: Anthony Davis, Lakers playing up to Darvin Ham’s vision

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Three Things is NBC’s five-days-a-week wrap-up of the night before in the NBA. Check out NBCSports.com every weekday morning to catch up on what you missed the night before plus the rumors, drama, and dunks that make the NBA must-watch.

1) Anthony Davis, Lakers playing up to Darvin Ham‘s vision

“This is not going to work without AD. No disrespect to Bron, no disrespect to Russ. They’re going to be who they are… but AD, having AD available…. it’s going to be invaluable. He’s the centerpiece to that championship table we’re trying to build.” —Lakers coach Darvin Ham before NBA training camps opened. 

This is what Darvin Ham envisioned.

In his last five games, Anthony Davis is averaging 35.6 points on 66.7% shooting with 13.4 rebounds and 3.2 blocks a game. He has been dominant — and his 55-point game leading the Lakers to a win over the Wizards on Sunday put him in historic company.

What Ham envisioned was more than just Davis playing the five and going back to an All-NBA — if you ask Patrick Beverley or Kristaps Porzingis after the game, MVP — level, it’s that the rest of the team would follow.

So far it has. In its last 11 games, the Lakers are 8-3 with the third-best offense in the NBA and a top-10 defense over that stretch, with a +7.2 net rating. What’s more, the shooting woes that dragged them down early in the season have also righted themselves.

This hot streak started against a soft part of the schedule, but road wins over the Bucks and Wizards show it isn’t a fluke. This is a team gaining confidence, and while it likely will not sustain this level of success for the remaining five months of the season, it’s a sign of what this team is capable of when clicking.

Los Angeles also still has a lot of work to do. Even with this recent run they are 10-12 and sit 12th in the West — they have to keep this going long enough to get into the playoff mix. Then we can discuss what kind of postseason threat they are.

Two Wizards notes out of their loss to the Lakers Sunday.

First, Bradley Beal left the game in the first quarter with hamstring tightness. He did not return and after the game there wasn’t much of an update on whether he will miss time, and if so how much. It’s not a good sign for a Wizards team without much margin for error.

Also, Daniel Gafford had maybe the dunk of the year. This is insane.

2) Damian Lillard returns to court and Trail Blazers

With Damian Lillard sidelined by a strained calf, the Trail Blazers dropped 7-of-8 and fell to .500 on the season (11-11). They were not the same team.

Sunday he returned — looking unbothered by any calf issue — and suddenly the ball was moving again, and the offense clicking in a win over the Pacers. Lillard was 5-of-10 from 3 on his way to 21 points, but just his presence opened up the offense so Jerami Grant could score 28. Anfernee Simons, coming off his insane 45-point night, added 22.

Lillard doesn’t have to carry Portland, he doesn’t have to drop 40 every night to have a chance to win (see Doncic, Luka). Grant and Simons can help carry the scoring load. But this is also a team without much margin for error, so they struggle without the threat of Lillard, the floor shrinks and the ball doesn’t move the same way.

With Lillard back, the Trail Blazers are a threat every night. In a tight West — the Trail Blazers are tied with the Clippers and Warriors for the sixth seed — they can’t afford any more slumps like the recent one. And they can’t afford to be without Lillard for an extended stretch.

3) Does he have a puncher’s chance? Floyd Mayweather wants to buy NBA team

The instinct is to bet against Floyd Mayweather ever owning an NBA team for a couple of reasons, but when you’re talking about a boxer with a 50-0 career record, bet against him at your own risk.

Mayweather said at a recent public event he was working to buy an NBA team and has made a $2 billion offer for one.

“I’ve been working on buying a NBA team outright. One of my other business partners, Brent Johnson, he’s here. So we’ve been working on the NBA team for a while now. It’s kinda, it’s rough…

“It could be the Vegas franchise. It could be the Seattle franchise or I could be buying a franchise that’s already up and running. So the first offer, we offered them a little over $2 billion for majority ownership. Do I have it? Absolutely, I have it, but it didn’t happen overnight. It didn’t happen overnight. It’s a lot when you have so many different businesses all around the world. It’s a lot.”

There are two key questions about Mayweather’s being able to purchase an NBA team.

The first is, does he really have the money? Mayweather says he does, and last year said his net worth was above $1.2 billion. Whether that is true, and whether that money is liquid or if it’s tied up in speculative investments, is not something we know (it’s not like Mayweather has to make his financial situation public). However, you can be sure it’s something the NBA would have its accountants look into — Mayweather would have to open his books to them to get into the club.

The second issue is Mayweather’s history of controversies — including homophobic comments and pleading guilty to domestic violence charges. The NBA vets its owners looking to avoid public relations blowback, and you can be sure a Mayweather ownership would lead to a lot of hard questions for a league that paints itself as progressive.

Even if he has the $2 billion and the league approves him, Mayweather will need partners in this process. The only NBA team publicly known to be for sale is the Phoenix Suns and the sale price for that may be double the $2 billion number Mayweather threw out. As for potential expansion teams (probably headed to Seattle and Las Vegas), those are years away according to league sources (think the second half of this decade), and the entry price to get into those is going to be well above $2 billion.

BONUS THING TO KNOW: Jose Alvarado put up a 38-spot for the Pelicans and had the New Orleans fans singing his name.