Bobcats, Thunder Reportedly Interested in Gary Neal Trade

Dan FavaleFeatured ColumnistFebruary 19, 2014

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Luck may once again be on Gary Neal's side.

UPDATE: Thursday, Feb. 20, at 12:40 p.m. ET by Dan Favale

It's all over folks, according to the Charlotte Observer's Rick Bonnell:

Bonnell provides full details on the deal:

This gets Luke Ridnour and Gary Neal to a potential playoff team.

This also frees the Bucks up to focus on things other than Neal's frustration, like losing.

---End of update---

The guard hasn't been given the playing time he expected to receive upon joining the Milwaukee Bucks. Public displays of frustration have prompted the Bucks to shop him. Hard.

Among those interested, according to ESPN's Marc Stein, are the Charlotte Bobcats:

UPDATE: Thursday, Feb. 20, at 11: 55 a.m. ET by Dan Favale

Yahoo! Sports' Adrian Wojnarowski confirms that Gary Neal may be on his way out of Milwaukee:

Why the Bucks want Ramon Sessions is anyone's guess. Perhaps it's a precursor to a Luke Ridnour trade, since they also have Nate Wolters and Brandon Knight on the roster.

---End of update---


UPDATE: Thursday, Feb. 20, at 11:50 a.m. ET by Dan Favale

The Gary Neal sweepstakes may be drawing to a close, per CBS Sports' Ken Berger:

Neal was previous linked to a potential package involving Charlotte's Ramon Sessions, so we'll see what happens there.

---End of update---


UPDATE: Thursday, Feb. 20, at 8 a.m. ET by Dan Favale

Stein says the Bobcats are still trying to make things happen:

Ramon Sessions would be an interesting addition in Milwaukee, though he is earning more than Neal, so the Bucks would likely have to be enamored with him for this to happen.

---End of update---


Gery Woelfel of the Racine Journal Times says the Oklahoma City Thunder could also be in play:

Although Neal is averaging a career-high 10 points per game, he's actually playing less now (20.2 minutes per game) on a dismal Bucks team than he did with the Western Conference Champion San Antonio Spurs last season (21.8).

"I thought I’d be able to get a consistent 20, 25 minutes a night. But for whatever reason, that hasn’t panned out," Neal told's Steve Aschburner in January. "It’s a business. I could have stayed in San Antonio on the qualifying offer, but then you miss out on $6 million."

Depending how much Milwaukee is seeking in return, Neal should be easy to move. He's owed under $3.3 million next season, after which his contract comes off the books. Both of the teams mentioned are also nice fits for what he provides. 

Oklahoma City is contending for the NBA's best record and runs an efficient offense Neal could help bolster as a member of the second unit. The Thunder bench ranks 15th in scoring, so there's a clear need for additional firepower.

Charlotte just needs someone who can flat-out score and isn't afraid to do it. The Bobcats rank 26th in offensive efficiency, while their bench checks in at 20th in scoring. A gunner like Neal would be a welcome commodity for a team hoping to make a playoff push in the woeful Eastern Conference.

"Sometimes all the cards fall in your favor, sometimes they don’t," Neal explained to Aschburner. "Right now, it’s hard with the record being [7-28] and my role basically being non-existent. It’s a tough spot. You’ve just got to fight through it."

If Neal is lucky, perhaps after the Feb. 20 trade deadline he'll be fighting for the Bobcats, Thunder or any team with both an assured direction and actual use for him.


*Salary information via ShamSports.