So come midnight tonight, it’s free agency galore in NBA-land.
The New Brooklyn Nets are already trying to make splashy moves (as they should) to keep Deron Williams happy. Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports reports that the Nets are engaged in talks with the Atlanta Hawks to get Joe Johnson. Wojnarowski says Brooklyn wants Johnson to join Williams in the backcourt but Johnson has four years left on a massive six-year, $123.7MM contract, so any trade would have to involve a great deal of assets going to the Hawks in exchange, according to Hoops Rumors. (four years still left on a six-year, $123.7MM contract). That’s a lot of Junior’s Cheesecakes and Nathan’s Hot Dogs for Brooklyn to dole out with Dwight Howard on the horizon (according to Chris Broussard on Twitter) . And Larrybrownsports.com says Meanwhile, the only joke in this situation is that the NBA was actually selling this ridiculous shirt. Larry says “I hope they trade him to Toronto or something.” LOL! . What a soap opera!
But Zach Lowe of SI.com says,
“Brooklyn could in theory acquire Johnson, re-sign D-Will and have no other players under contract for ’14–giving them D12 space. IN THEORY”
If they can’t swing it, Wojnarowski says the Nets want some O.J. Mayo.
Speaking of the Nets, guess who could end up back on the team? It’s been reported by Ric Bucher of ESPN, that Jason Kidd wants to back up Deron Williams, and will sign with the team that Williams picks. But Williams denied the “package deal” to ESPN The Magazine’s Chris Broussard tonight despite the two pals spending the weekend together golfing in the Hamptons, NY. Williams told Broussard that he will meet with both the Nets and Mavericks Monday.
Well, at least Net fans can’t say their front office guys aren’t trying. Hopefully they won’t be laughed at this time, as they were when Lebron James paid them a visit a couple of years ago.
Meanwhile, on the Ray Allen front, Brian Windhorst of ESPN.com reports that the Heat are hot for Ray Allen, and will offer their $3MM taxpayer mid-level exception to get him.
But more recently, a few hours ago, a report came in that The Memphis Grizzlies will offer Allen its full mid-level exception ($5 million) in hopes of luring him away from other suitors — such as Miami — with only the mini-mid-level ($3 million) to spend. I’ll see you, and I’ll raise you, Mr. Riley.
And some Steve Nash news from Marc Stein of ESPN, where Nash admitted that, more and more, he pictures himself in a different uniform next season after spending the past eight seasons with the Phoenix Suns. According to sources, Nash will be meet in NYC with the Raptors (who could offer the most money- reportedly $12 million per year according to Stein), and then the Knicks on Sunday.
Will the Knicks home court make any difference? Will Spike Lee offer Nash a co-production deal to spice up the pot? By the way, did you know that the office of Spike’s production company, 40 Acres and a Mule, is just a few blocks from Barclay’s Center, where the Nets play? Don’t rule out the Nets there either. If Williams does bolt for Dallas, they’ll be desperate for big names and throw a truck of money at Nash who’d be a cab ride away from his home in downtown Manhattan.
Nash said he expects the Mavericks to pursue Deron Williams, but that he’d be excited to go back to Dallas too, saying,
“It’s a great city. It’s one that obviously I have a history with and an affinity and affection for, so it’s another opportunity different from Toronto but one that’s exciting and has some great facets to it as well.”
And on the Raptors,
“The Raptors would be one of those teams where you’re probably not going there to win a championship in the next three years. For me it’d be going home to Canada, to a great city, and trying to help an organization move forward.”
Dave Daniels of Rant Sports thinks the two-time MVP deserves a shot at a title, so I hope that he does not end up on the Raptors; there isn’t another player I wish better circumstances or luck to than Nash. The Mavericks would give him a semi-realistic title shot and the evolution of Dirk Nowiztki’s game would make them a vicious one-two punch.
Nash does seem to have the best shot at a title with the Mavs but it would be loads of fun to see him on the Knicks or Nets. I don’t see him going to the Raptors when he knows he can make a lot of money in NY in endorsements, and further his film career at the same time. Stay tuned…