Nets Rumors: Latest Free Agent Buzz and More
We've only just begun.
While Monday's trade sent Joe Johnson to the Brooklyn Nets for a bunch of expiring contracts, a No. 2 from McDonald's and a signed poster of Uwe Blab sent shock waves through the NBA; Jay-Z's squad is far from done dealing.
In fact, after that trade was completed, Brooklyn had just three players on the active roster: Johnson, Brook Lopez and MarShon Brooks. If they are done making moves, then the Nets are in a lot of trouble.
Let's take a look at recent signings, free-agent buzz and more surrounding the hottest NBA team of the offseason.
Dwightmare on Atlantic Avenue...Street?
Sam Greenwood/Getty Images
The Brooklyn Nets are reportedly inching closer to acquiring All-Star big man Dwight Howard.
UPDATED: Sunday, July 9 at 11:51 p.m. ET by Tim Keeney
While there is no deal in place for Dwight Howard, HOOPSWORLD's Alex Kennedy reports that a trade may happen very soon:
And then this:
Orlando is still weighing options. Magic brass will meet tomorrow morning to decide if this is best deal. A trade could be completed Monday.— Alex Kennedy (@AlexKennedyNBA) July 9, 2012
It sounds like Howard could don a Nets jersey very soon, and most importantly, you won't have to hear about his trade rumors anymore.
RealGM's Jarrod Rudolph gives us these extra nuggets of information.
Sources: Magic, Nets and Cavaliers near completion of Dwight Howard trade. Deal will include 11 players, cash and multiple draft picks.— Jarrod N Rudolph (@JRudolphSports) July 9, 2012
If this trade happens, just like Dwight Howard, it is going to be huge.
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UPDATED: Sunday, July 9 at 11:36 p.m. ET by Tim Keeney
If the Magic are going to give up Dwight Howard, it sounds as if they want Brook Lopez in return (via Yahoo! Sports' Adrian Wojnarowski).
For now, Orlando prefers Nets restricted free-agent center Brook Lopez as a centerpiece player over having its pick of the Houston Rockets' roster, sources said.
The Nets have been trying to sign Lopez to an extension, although that was unclear whether it was for the future or for a potential sign-and-trade. Now, it appears that could be for a sign-and-trade to Orlando.
Keep it locked here as we'll continue to provide updates as the Nets try to obtain Howard to complete their "Big 3."
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UPDATED: Sunday, July 9 at 8:12 p.m. ET by Sam Quinn
According to Jarrod Rudolph of RealGM.com via Twitter, the possibility of the deal occurring is promising:
Just spoke with a source that tells me that Billy King is "very close" to getting Dwight Howard. And deal could be completed "very soon."— Jarrod N Rudolph (@JRudolphSports) July 8, 2012
This would be absolutely huge for the Nets front office to land a player of Howard's caliber immediately following a move to a new city.
If the Nets want any chance at overtaking the New York Knicks as the favorite team in the city, they'll need Howard's help.
Stay tuned to Bleacher Report as this story develops.
---End of Update---
Where to start with Dwight Howard? He's been involved in about every rumor in the past two days, and I honestly wouldn't be surprised if you told me sources say he will play on the moon next year.
The biggest news came when ESPN's Chris Broussard reported the Magic and Nets were in discussion about a possible swap:
Sources: The Nets & Magic are discussing a trade that would send Dwight Howard to Brooklyn for Brook Lopez, Kris Humphies, Marshon Brooks...— Chris Broussard (@Chris_Broussard) July 3, 2012
But understandably—why would the Magic want a soon-to-be overpaid center and a soon-to-be overpaid Kris Humphries?—CBS' Ken Berger made it clear that Orlando is not ready to make a move.
To top it all off, the Lakers are now in the mix, supposedly offering Andrew Bynum in a deal for Howard (via RealGM's Jarrod Rudolph). If Los Angeles is offering Bynum, the chances of Brooklyn getting the big man are suddenly low again.
Of course, the Nets have the best chance of signing the big man, so that could factor into Orlando's decision should it get desperate.
I don't think it gets more back-and-forth than this. Stay tuned for the inevitable 47 daily updates.
Nets Hot on the Marcus Camby Trail
I'm now convinced that the Nets made it an offseason goal to enter the discussion for every single player that hits the trading block.
The latest sign of this comes with 38-year-old Marcus Camby. He is set to be a free agent, but the Rockets wouldn't mind shipping him out in a little sign-and-trade deal first, and it appears they will choose between either the Knicks or the Nets to do so.
Yahoo's Adrian Wojnarowski passed along the latest.
New York and Brooklyn are frontrunners in sign-and-trade talks to acquire Houston's Marcus Camby, league sources tell Y!— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) July 8, 2012
Despite his age, Camby is a fine defensive player, and would be a nice option down low for the Nets. Although, as is the case with everything New Jersey is doing, one has to wonder if this is in someway connected in their efforts to land Dwight Howard.
The Original 'Big 1'
Chris Chambers/Getty Images
Deron Williams has announced via Twitter that he will re-sign with the Brooklyn Nets:
Made a very tough decision today.... lockerz.com/s/222071318— Deron Williams (@DeronWilliams) July 3, 2012
This deal, which is for just under $100 million over five years (via CBS' Ken Berger), is absolutely huge for the Nets.
Williams' signature ends months of speculation about whether he would stay in Brooklyn or dart to Dallas.
With D-Will now signed on, the Nets have a formidable starting lineup beginning to take shape with Williams, MarShon Brooks, Joe Johnson and Brook Lopez, and plenty of pieces to help fill the final spot.
Now that Williams has made a decision, the free-agent dominoes will likely start falling. Jason Kidd and other lower-tier point guards were waiting on Williams' deal (and Steve Nash's) to see where their services are needed.
If You Can't Get Dwight, Get Reggie Evans
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The Nets weren't going to get through Tuesday without making a trade (via Yahoo! Sports' Adrian Wojnarowski):
Brooklyn is finalizing a sign-and-trade deal with the Los Angeles Clippers for Reggie Evans, league sources tell Y! Sports.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) July 3, 2012
Yes, that Reggie Evans.
The 32-year-old veteran is a pure-energy guy. He'll crash the glass unlike anyone in the league, play tough on-ball defense, dole out some hard—sometimes nasty—fouls and miss free throws.
Nothing more, nothing less.
This is pure speculation, but if Avery Johnson intend to play Evans as a power forward, and if he goes after Ersan Ilyasova (via Peter Vecsey), this could spell the end of Kris Humphries' time as a Net.
Or Sign Mirza Teletovic
Photo courtesy of nytimes.com
According to the New York Times' Howard Beck, the Nets have signed the 6'9" Bosnian power forward to a three-year deal worth just under $15.7 million.
Mirza Teletovic had a terrific season in Spain's Liga ACB. He averaged 16.3 points and 6.9 rebounds per game for Caja Laboral.
According to netsarescorching.com's Sam Meyerkopf, the best-case scenario for Teletovic is Ryan Anderson, and the worst-case is Channing Frye:
Mirza Teletovic is a stretch four with a mean streak. He’ll walk into the NBA and right away have one of the smoothest long distance strokes. His jumper is his most lethal weapon. No matter how close you think you’re guarding him, Mirza will find space to get off his quick release shot. His confidence is always sky-high.
Expect Teletovic to have an impact for Brooklyn right away.
On the flip side, the Nets used their mid-level exception on him, so that likely means no Jason Kidd.
Which Gives Them a Better Shot to Land Dwight Howard
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According to ESPN.com's John Hollinger:
A source close to the negotiations tells us that Bosnian forward Mirza Teletovic might not sign with Brooklyn for the non-taxpayer's midlevel exception, as originally reported, but for the taxpayer's midlevel, which is a smaller contract with a maximum of $3.09 million for the first year...This development would leave the door open for Howard, if only slightly.
Okay, so it's not a slam dunk, but every little bit of leverage helps in a situation like this. The Nets are obviously doing everything in their power to maneuver their pieces for Dwight Howard.
But There's a Plan B in the Works, Just in Case They Can't Land Howard
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If Dwight Howard ins't an option for the Nets, they're reportedly interested in pursuing Milwaukee Bucks restricted free agent Ersan Ilyasova as a fallback option, according to Yahoo! Sports' Adrian Wojnarowski:
Y! Sources: Nets target Ersan Ilyasova -- Plan B for Dwight Howard - has 5-year, nearly $40M offer to stay with Bucks. tinyurl.com/dy9hoff— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) July 4, 2012
Ilyasova is a 25-year old monster of a power forward who's just starting to come into his own, and the Bucks are apparently not keen on letting him go. I'm curious to know how the Nets plan on overcoming that obstacle, but if I've learned anything about them this offseason it's that they aren't afraid to make major moves for players they want.
We'll keep you updated as the news comes in. This offseason is just getting started, folks. Hold on to your hats.