NBA Rumor Round Up For Wednesday, February 10:
Atlanta Hawks: There is a chance the Hawks will make a big trade by the Feb. 18 deadline, reported ESPN.com's Kevin Arnovitz and Brian Windhorst on Tuesday. The team would like to keep their core of Al Horford, Jeff Teague and Kyle Korver, but the best move for the future could be to trade one or two of those players. Arnovitz and Windhorst wrote: "Sources with knowledge of the team's thinking say that Hawks management and ownership have conceded internally that unless Atlanta can recapture the magic of last season's run -- when it went 60-22 and claimed the East's top seed -- this season's team is a fringe contender. ... Sources inform ESPN that the Boston Celtics, Denver Nuggets, and Magic have been the most aggressive in looking to acquire a veteran difference maker. ... Sources say the Indiana Pacers have made inquiries and have dangled guard George Hill as a possible swap. The Magic are also potential suitors for Teague, sources confirmed." ... Regarding Horford, the Celtics might make a play for him. "I think that is the guy, one of the guys across the league that Danny Ainge is the most excited about. He is a 4-man that would fit right into what Boston is trying to do," Chris Mannix said on CSN New England, reports MassLive.com. If Ainge can't land Horford by next Thursday's deadline, he will surely target the Hawks' big man once free agency starts on July 1. ... Finally, Frank Isola of the New York Daily News reports a source said a deal has been discussed regarding Teague and Orlando's Victor Oladipo.
Sacramento Kings: After speaking with vice president of basketball operations and general manager Vlade Divac on Tuesday, head coach George Karl will stay on as the head coach. "George will remain our coach and we're collectively working through our issues," Divac said in a statement.
Miami Heat: Starting shooting guard Dwyane Wade will become a free agent in July as he only signed a one-year, $20 million contract last summer. Wade is hoping a new deal can be struck with the Heat soon after the 2016 free agent market opens on July 1. “The whole free agency thing, I didn't want to be in it last summer; I don't want to be in it this summer,” Wade tells The Miami Herald. “I don't want to be on the market at all…. I’m not curious at all. I want to get to it [with the Heat]. I want to be able to sign my deal and move on and not have to deal with any rumors, any free agency, any this, any that. This is where I want to end my career. So we'll figure it out.” ... The Heat could use a shooter as they are 28th in the NBA in three-point shooting and according to The Miami Herald, one player on their radar is Sacramento's Omri Casspi. Casspi is making 42.2 of his 3-point shots this season.
New Orleans Pelicans: The team has likely lost guard Tyreke Evans for the rest of the season, reports Shams Charania of Yahoo Sports. Evans is having issues once again with his right knee and another surgery is needed to fix the problem. The Pelicans would like to trade Evans, but that won't happen now. Evans will become a free agent in 2017.
Toronto Raptors: The NBA trade deadline is next week and the Raptors will likely not doing anything. Josh Lewenberg of TSN writes: "Masai Ujiri has done most of his work during the off-season and figures to be active again leading up to the draft and in the summer, as the rising cap should give him more flexibility. For now, you can expect another quiet trade deadline in Toronto."
Brooklyn Nets: The team is currently talking with candidates for their GM position, while navigating trade talks for next weeks deadline. While the Nets might make some moves, two players who won't be traded are Thaddeus Young and Brook Lopez. According to Howard Beck of Bleacher Report, owner Mikhail Prokhorov will not allow either player to be traded at this time as he thinks the team can quickly upgrade the talent on the roster this summer. ... Regarding the GM search, NetsDaily.com reports San Antonio assistant GM Sean Marks, Indiana GM Kevin Pritchard and former Cleveland/Atlanta GM Chris Grant are candidates for the GM vacancy, too. According to this report, Marks could be the best of the new names.
Memphis Grizzlies: The team took a major hit on Tuesday as they found out starting center Marc Gasol is out indefinitely due to a broken right foot. There is a chance Zach Randolph might move from the starting power forward spot to center. Another option is Brandan Wright, who has been out for all but seven games this season due to a knee injury. “We are hoping to have Brandan Wright with us on court post All-Star break. He’s progressed well," GM Chris Wallace told Ronald Tillery of The Commercial-Appeal.
Orlando Magic: Forward Jason Smith signed just a one-year, $4.3 million contract back in July, so he is set to become a free agent this summer. Smith says he would like to re-sign with the Magic. "I like it here. The coaching staff knows what they're going to get out of me. We're on the same page. For me, it's really about helping these young guys develop and knowing my role," Smith tells the Orlando Sentinel. Smith is currently averaging 6.3 points and 2.4 rebounds.
NBA: The NBPA is expected to opt out, which is their right, of the current collective bargaining agreement on Dec. 15 if a deal with the NBA has not been finalized. "Clearly we’re operating under the premise that if we can’t get a new deal negotiated by then, they are likely to opt out," NBA commissioner Adam Silver told USA TODAY. "That puts a lot of pressure on both sides to work over the next 10 months, which is a long time, to get an extension done."