NBA Trade Rumors: Why Amare Stoudemire Is Preventing a Deal to Cleveland

Kevin RobertsSenior Writer IFebruary 15, 2010

PHOENIX - JANUARY 26:  Amar'e Stoudemire #1 of the Phoenix Suns during the NBA game against the Charlotte Bobcats at US Airways Center on January 26, 2010 in Phoenix, Arizona. The Bobcats defeated the Suns in overtime 114-109.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Christian Petersen/Getty Images

After speculation over the past two weeks that the Cleveland Cavaliers have shown major interest in Amare Stoudemire, could the biggest road-block be Stoudemire himself?

It's looking that way.

The original plan coming from Cleveland (rumored, anyways) is that adding either Stoudemire or Washington's Antawn Jamison would give them another athletic body inside to help the aging Shaquille O'Neal make it through the playoffs.

The Cavaliers were widely rumored to be hot on Jamison. Then talks of interest in Indiana's Troy Murphy arose. Now the latest piece of gossip is a deal that would bring Stoudemire to Cleveland and send Zydrunas Ilgauskas, J.J. Hickson, and another player (likely Wally Szscerbiak) to Phoenix.

However, Stoudemire has apparently put the nix on such a trade (for now, at least), and for two very good reasons.


1. Success with Shaq

Stoudemire discovered first-hand what it's like to play with Shaq as a teammate. Unless you're a star shooting guard, it doesn't do much for your stats or your fame.

Playing with Shaq and sharing the inside, as well as the stage with O'Neal and James, isn't something that appeals to Stoudemire, even if doing so brings the real possibility of an NBA Championship. That, and there's the slight chance that Stoudemire feels his own team could win it this year (although unlikely).


2. His Contract

Stoudemire is looking for something along the lines of a three-year, $60 million extension. By allowing himself to go to Cleveland, he knows that's not likely to happen for him, at least not right away.

And because of the uncertainty of his contract status, Stoudemire has more than enough reason to say no to it.

Playing with Shaq inside would kill his numbers and probably lessen his minutes. Even if it didn't, he still has to share the stage and ball with LeBron James.

Stoudemire wants the money, and he wants to win, but he also wants to be "the guy"
for the team he's playing for.

It's far from being worked out. With less than three full days remaining, the Cavaliers may have to cut their losses and aim for either Jamison or Murphy, after all.


For more rumors and news on Amare Stoudemire and other NBA players/trades, go here.