Basketball Wiretap

Mavericks Fear Potential Luka Doncic Trade Request As Early As 2024 Offseason

Apr 8, 2023 11:19 AM

The Dallas Mavericks have some degree of fear that Luka Doncic could request a trade as soon as the summer of 2024 if they don't make significant progress by then, team sources tell Tim MacMahon of ESPN.

Doncic just finished Year 1 of a five-year, $215 million supermax extension. Doncic has a player option for the 2026 offseason.

The Mavericks missed the play-in entirely after reaching the Western Conference Finals in 2022.

Doncic participated in personnel discussions with the front office for the first time this season and pushed for a major upgrade, which led to their trade for Kyrie Irving.

MacMahon wrote that Doncic "appeared relieved" after their loss to the Chicago Bulls, which officially eliminated them from play-in contention. When MacMahon shared the observation with a member of the Mavs' staff who knows Doncic well said, "Good eyes."

Tim MacMahon/ESPN

Tags: Luka Doncic, Dallas Mavericks, NBA, NBA Trade Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

Asking Price For Taking On Russell Westbrook Decreased Dramatically From Preseason To Deadline

Apr 6, 2023 11:10 AM

While the Los Angeles Lakers struggled in the first half of the season while keeping Russell Westbrook on their roster, the cost of trading him for players who could help them this season decreased dramatically closer to the trade deadline.

Sources tell Jake Fischer of Yahoo that during the preseason both the Utah Jazz and Indiana Pacers indicated it would take two future first round picks for them to take on Westbrook and his $46.2 million salary.

As the trade deadline approached, the Jazz informed the Lakers they were willing to accept just one first round pick for Westbrook while also including Jarred Vanderbilt. 

The Lakers were able to acquire Vanderbilt, D'Angelo Russell and Malik Beasley for Westbrook and a protected future first round pick. Westbrook was eventually bought out and signed with the Los Angeles Clippers. 

Jake Fischer/Yahoo Sports

Tags: Russell Westbrook, Indiana Pacers, Los Angeles Lakers, Utah Jazz, NBA, NBA Trade Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

Mavericks Have To 'Earn' Luka Doncic Wanting To Stay With Franchise For Entire Career

Apr 5, 2023 10:20 PM

During an unexpected media availability on Wednesday, Mark Cuban was asked whether he gets a sense Luka Doncic remains optimistic about the long-term future of the Dallas Mavericks.

"Look, players don't talk like that, just like, 'Hey, I'm here for the next 17 years.'" said Cuban. "He'd like to be here the whole time, but we've got to earn that."

Cuban was then asked how the Mavericks can do that.

"Win championships," Cuban said. "It's amazing how that cures all. I mean, before Giannis [Antetokounmpo] won, everybody was like, 'Where's he going? Where's he going? He's not staying. He's not staying.' [Nikola] Jokic, while they haven't won, da, da, da, da, da. Dirk [Nowitzki] before [the Mavs won the 2010-11 title], right?

"There's no great player, no superstar, where they don't question, 'What are you gonna do if you haven't won yet?"

Tim MacMahon/ESPN

Tags: Luka Doncic, Dallas Mavericks, NBA, NBA Signing Rumor, NBA Trade Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

Damian Lillard, Blazers Expected To Have 'Serious Conversations About What's Next'

Mar 28, 2023 10:37 AM

Damian Lillard has "essentially" been shut down for the remainder of the season. While Lillard is dealing with a calf injury, the reality of Portland falling out of the Play-In spot is the reason for the decision.

The Blazers have a lottery-protected first round pick that they will retain.

Portland could also entertain the idea of trading Lillard.

"You now have to wonder if Lillard ever steps on the court again for Portland," writes Shams Charania at The Athletic. 

Lillard is due $216 million over the next four seasons and has privately considered the possibility of a trade even though his public statements have demonstrated a desire to win with the Blazers.

"I expect there to be serious conversations about what's next for both sides," adds Charania.

Shams Charania/The Athletic

Tags: Damian Lillard, Portland Trail Blazers, NBA, NBA Trade Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

Jaylen Brown Suggests Some Of His Recent Comments Were 'Taken Out Of Context'

Mar 27, 2023 11:07 AM

Jaylen Brown gave multiple in-depth interviews that were published last week, one in the New York Times and another in The Ringer. Brown's future with the Boston Celtics and happiness with the team and the city were called into question.

For all of Brown's uncertainity with the Celtics, his situation can be quickly clarified this offseason if he makes an All-NBA team and becomes eligible for a supermax extension. If not, Brown will almost certainly become an unrestricted free agent in 2024 due to how the Celtics are limited on a raise from his current below market contract.

“I feel great,” Brown said. “I’m on a 50-win team right now that you can’t take for granted. Tonight was the 50th win. And right now I’m focused on helping to lead my team for another playoff run. In terms of speculation, et cetera, I can’t speculate on anything above what I’m doing right now. I think sometimes when people write articles they get taken out of context especially when writers have their own agendas or whatever. So for me personally, I’m thinking about clarifying some of the things that have been recently said. But other than that, I’m just focused on my team. I’m focused on playing basketball and winning games.”

Brown was asked what he would like to clarify. 

“Nothing right now,” Brown said. “Right now the only thing I want to clarify is that the Celtics need to play better and win more games. If I want to say something in the future about the kind of things that have been floating around I will. But in terms of right now, I like when people hear things from the horse’s mouth and you can see my reaction, my face and everything how I feel about what I’m saying. Sometimes those things can get lost in translation, you know? So if I feel the need to do so I will. I keep constant communication with my teammates and my organization and we’ve gotta have everybody on board if we want to do what we say we want to do. So right now I’m focused on that.”

Jay King/The Athletic

Tags: Jaylen Brown, Boston Celtics, NBA, NBA Signing Rumor, NBA Trade Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

Warriors Won't Seek Further Action Against Blazers Over Gary Payton II Trade

Mar 25, 2023 4:47 PM

The Golden State Warriors will not pursue any further action, grievance or review by the NBA for their trade with the Portland Trail Blazers for Gary Payton II.

The Warriors considered rescinding their trade for Payton after the Blazers failed to disclose the extent of his injury.

Payton is expected to return from his injury soon.

Chris Haynes/Bleacher Report

Tags: Gary Payton II, Golden State Warriors, Portland Trail Blazers, NBA, NBA Trade Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

Anthony Davis: I Love Playing For The Lakers

Mar 24, 2023 11:44 AM

Anthony Davis can become a free agent in 2024 and his future with the Los Angeles Lakers is uncertain. The deal Davis is on aligns with LeBron James, who is 38 and has spoken about trying to play on the same team as his son, Bronny James, before retiring.

Davis, however, continues to have a goal of winning another title with the Lakers.

"To be a part of the legacy already of winning a championship, you want to win more," Davis said. "We're tied with Boston at 17, it's like, I want to be part of the one that makes it 18 and this franchise No. 1."

Davis signed a long-term deal with the Lakers in 2020 even though he could have made more money by signing a short-term deal that would have allowed him to get 35 percent of the max in 2022.

"I love being in L.A. My family loves it. I love playing for the Lakers," Davis said. "When the time is up, honestly, I'm not sure the direction the team wants to go or who knows the conversation we'll have. But when the time comes, we'll sit down, have those conversations and go from there."

Dave McMenamin/ESPN

Tags: Anthony Davis, Los Angeles Lakers, NBA, NBA Signing Rumor, NBA Trade Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

Knicks Have Potential To Make Separate Trades For Two Star-Level Players

Mar 22, 2023 11:59 AM

The New York Knicks have had a successful 22-23 season despite deciding not to trade for Donovan Mitchell in the offseason. With Jalen Brunson and Julius Randle as their core, they will have trade optionality this offseason.

"Here's what I think about the Knicks," said Brian Windhorst on his podcast. "They have two handfuls of trade material, in my opinion. They can make, in my opinion, two big trades if they had to coming into this summer.

"They have the expiring contract of Evan Fournier, which can act as ballast in a trade. They have a bunch of younger players that people are interested in. And they have something like nine tradable first round picks.

"In my view, they can trade for two star-level players if they needed to. It doesn't mean they'd have to do those deals in the summer of '23. Those deals can be made within the 23-24 season, they can be in '24. But they can hold, in my opinion, they can hold Jalen Brunson, they can hold Julius Randle, and they can make two giant trades.

"Whether they can hold Brunson, Randle and [RJ] Barrett and make two giants trades, that would depend on the players. But there is even a window that they can hold all three of those and make two giant trade. 

"It's going to require, I think, a player to say 'Send me to New York.' And potentially another star player to say 'Oh, I'll go to New York too.'

"Or for New York to pull a big trade and a star player going 'Ah, man. They got this and they still have this. I want to do that.'

"I kind of compare it to where the Cavs were in 2014. The Cavs had stuff and they had space. They used the space on LeBron and they used the stuff for Kevin Love."

Windhorst then talked about the favorable contract of Brunson, which declines in value over the four years.

"The Knicks are positioned," said Windhorst. "Leon Rose has put them in position. Getting into position is not the hard part. Executing is the hard part. But he's put them in position."

Brian Windhorst/ESPN

Tags: New York Knicks, NBA, NBA Trade Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

Jaylen Brown Requested Meeting With Brad Stevens, Jayson Tatum After KD Rumors

Mar 21, 2023 11:20 AM

The Boston Celtics reportedly discussed a trade with the Brooklyn Nets for Kevin Durant last offseason with a package built around Jaylen Brown, Derrick White and future draft picks. Jayson Tatum and Durant are friends dating back to their time together with Team USA in the Olympics. 

Brown commented on the trade discussions in an interview with Logan Murdock of The Ringer.

“[KD] and JT are friends. They was working out together and whatnot,” Brown said. “So, I wasn’t sure what the energy was. I wasn’t sure what the direction of the organization was.”

Brown placed a three-way call to Stevens and Tatum. During that discussion, Stevens says he assured Brown that he wouldn't be traded.

“You just have to have a direct conversation,” Stevens tells The Ringer of the meeting. “And you just have to be able to say, ‘This is what’s real. This is where we are. Obviously, you and Jayson are the two guys that we’ve built the whole roster around. And our every expectation is for us to come and compete together and try to be two games better than we were last year.’”

“Once we all got together and kind of talked it through, we all left on the same page," Brown said. "But the actions that was taking place during that time, it just didn’t seem like that was the direction that the organization was going in. I don’t know. It was hard to tell, at least.”

Logan Murdock/The Ringer

Tags: Jaylen Brown, Boston Celtics, Brooklyn Nets, NBA, NBA Trade Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

Pelicans Were Close To Trading For Jarred Vanderbilt, Malik Beasley

Mar 20, 2023 12:17 PM

The New Orleans Pelicans were involved in trade discussions with the Utah Jazz on a deal for Jarred Vanderbilt and Malik Beasley, but those players were eventually traded to the Los Angeles Lakers instead. The Lakers and Pelicans are competing for a spot in the play-in and New Orleans also gets to swap picks if the one belonging to Los Angeles is more favorable.

As part of a three-team trade, the Jazz also traded Mike Conley to the Minnesota Timberwolves with D'Angelo Russell going to the Lakers. That element may have prevented the Pelicans from getting a deal done for Vanderbilt and Beasley. 

"The Pelicans were close to getting Beasley and Vanderbilt from Utah at the trade deadline," said Zach Lowe on his podcast. "Or close-ish. They had a pretty good offer on the table. It was a draft equity based offer with a pick that maybe was not as good as the Lakers' pick they ended up trading, but pretty close I think from what I've heard.

"But one of the issues was Conley and the Jazz' determination to get off Conley and could the Pelicans figure that somehow? And it became pretty complicated.

"That trade ends up helping the Lakers, helping the Wolves, and the Pelicans don't get involved in it and now they're falling apart."

Zach Lowe/ESPN

Tags: Malik Beasley, Jarred Vanderbilt, Los Angeles Lakers, New Orleans Pelicans, Utah Jazz, NBA, NBA Trade Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor