With the NBA trade deadline mere weeks away, there has been a ton of buzz going around the league about players that could be on the move—or at the very least, openly available.
Plenty of teams are looking to unload salary, acquire pieces for a potential playoff run or just tinker with their roster in order to improve in the future, so this likely isn’t going to be a quiet February.
Let’s take a look at the latest reports from Association insiders concerning some of the game’s biggest stars.
The Sacramento Kings center is by far the biggest name being run through the rumor mill—and for good reason.
He hired agent Dan Fegan around the same time as an altercation with coach Keith Smart, and Fegan is well known for being behind the Dwight Howard saga that lasted all of last season and into the past summer.
Since that flurry of incidents, there has been various sources reporting that a number of franchises have expressed interest in the immature but talented big man.
The latest report comes courtesy of Marc J. Spears of Yahoo! Sports, who found that the Charlotte Bobcats are willing to make a run for Cousins and possess young, talented pieces and a handful of 2013 first-round draft selections.
The Kings public stance remains that Cousins is not going anywhere, but much could change as we near the February 21 deadline.
STAT has returned to the New York Knicks, but that doesn’t mean the team wouldn’t be interested in trading the star PF.
Will the Knicks move STAT by the deadline?
According to Steve Kyler of Hoopsworld, the organization attempted to move the overpaid big for practically nothing during the height of their early-season success, but could not find a taker for his massive contract that still has three years and $65 million remaining (counting 2012-13).
The Knickerbockers brass is reportedly still willing to dump Stoudemire on a willing recipient, but they simply cannot find a party that will gamble on his uninsurable knees and history of injury.
If STAT can show some improvement—especially over his atrocious 3-of-8 shooting, six-point, one-rebound, 17-minute debut on Tuesday—a market may open up for the 30-year-old by the deadline.
The Chicago Bulls are hanging in there without Derrick Rose, but know they aren’t quite a championship-caliber squad even when the former MVP gets back on the floor.
According to Kyler, team brass would love to shed Hamilton’s contract (he is due $5 million this season and has just $1 million of the $5 million next year guaranteed) in order to avoid the luxury tax and possibly bring back a capable contributor.
While Hamilton was supposed to be the answer to the team’s SG woes, he hasn’t been able to stay healthy and isn’t the effective contributor he was during his time with the Detroit Pistons.
If Chicago can lighten its salary footprint, it will make the 2013 offseason financially easier on the team owners. This would hopefully allow them to be more willing to freely spend in order to improve the roster going into the 2013-14 campaign.
Expect a number of suitors to pop up for Rip over the next few weeks, as his veteran leadership and “expiring” contract are quite valuable to many teams in the Association.
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