|Reports: NBA questioning Celtics-Clippers trade||06.20.13 at 1:42 pm ET|
The NBA is questioning the connection between the Celtics trading Kevin Garnett for DeAndre Jordan and then relinquishing the rights to Doc Rivers in exchange for two first-round picks from the Clippers, as first reported by ESPN’s Marc Stein. The league’s guidelines state player deals cannot be contingent upon coaching contracts.
Meanwhile, the Boston Herald’s Mark Murphy contradicted two previous reports, claiming a) Celtics president Danny Ainge reached out to Los Angeles after Tuesday’s stalled talks, and b) the Clippers did not present owner Donald Sterling with a package that would have sent Jordan and two No. 1 picks to Boston for Garnett and Rivers.
|DeAndre Jordan: ‘I’d be happy’ to play for Celtics||at 1:02 pm ET|
As trade rumors continue to fly, Clippers center DeAndre Jordan is trying to block out the noise, but the 24-year-old admitted on Yahoo! Sports Radio he’d be “happy” to stay in Los Angeles or join the Celtics.
‘If I was younger, I probably would have handled it a little differently, but with me just finishing my fifth year I know that it is a business, teams want to win and they’re only looking out for their best interest,” said Jordan, who averaged 8.8 points and 7.2 rebounds last season. “I’ve been with the Clippers my whole career. All I know is Los Angeles and the Clippers organization, but if I was to go somewhere else, if it did happen, I’d still be playing basketball — the sport that I love — so I’d be happy and just try to make the best of the opportunity.”
Meanwhile, ESPN’s Marc Stein tweeted that the deal Clippers management took to owner Donald Sterling for approval — trading Jordan to the Celtics for Kevin Garnett and acquiring the rights to hire Doc Rivers in exchange for two first-round draft picks — is hitting yet another snag due to the legality of linking the two transactions under the NBA’s guidelines. The two sides have reportedly already begun discussing additional scenarios.
‘You hear stuff from your friends, media, things like that, so I just try not to listen to it,” added Jordan. “I don’t really watch it or read into it at all. I’m really just focused on getting better this summer and just preparing for next season.
‘I’m just really in the gym working out with a couple of my teammates and some other guys, just trying to get better and stay focused. I’ve got a couple things this summer that I’m focused on, and I’m just trying to get better and come out and have a better season than we did this year.’
Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports joined Dennis & Callahan Thursday morning to give an update on the ongoing trade talks between the Celtics and Clippers involving Doc Rivers and Kevin Garnett for DeAndre Jordan and one or two first-round picks.
While the deal appeared to be dead Tuesday, the Clippers started trade discussions again Wednesday at the urging of pending free agent Chris Paul, according to Wojnarowski.
‘Yesterday, Chris Paul — really over the last 36 hours or so, Chris Paul really started to pressure the Clippers to get this deal done,’ Wojnarowski said. ‘If they wanted to keep him in L.A. and to keep him off the free agent market July 1, that they had to get this deal done and to throw that extra draft pick that Danny Ainge has wanted, get this done and all but certainly lock him down to stay with the Clippers. That is what started to happen. The Clippers called the Celtics back yesterday afternoon, reported at Yahoo!, and started a dialogue again.
‘Late last night after Brian Shaw interviewed with [Clippers owner] Donald Sterling in L.A., the Clippers management met with Sterling. I don’t know if they are going to talk more this morning, but they met with Sterling last night really to give him their recommendation that, ‘Hey, we need to do this. Let’s give them the pick. Let’s make these incredible financial commitments and get this deal done.’ I think there is a very good chance that Doc and Kevin Garnett go to the Clippers for Jordan and the two picks as early as today.’
Wojnarowski said the deal makes perfect sense for Garnett, who has a chance to compete for a championship with the Clippers and does not have to play 37 minutes per night. However, he also said trading Garnett and his no-trade clause to the Clippers makes sense for the Celtics, who can use Jordan and the two first-round picks to help rebuild.
‘For the Celtics, I really think this is a win-win,’ Wojnarowski said. ‘They wanted Doc to be their coach. They weren’t trying to run him out. But when he expressed his desire to do this, to get two first-round picks out of this, to get a young player, DeAndre Jordan, who they like but they don’t love him ‘ I think everyone in the league feels his contract, he is overpriced. But I know DeAndre is excited about coming to Boston. He feels like maybe it has run its course with him and the Clippers. Maybe he will develop better in Boston. This is a situation where Boston is ready to do this, too. They are not sending Doc away angrily.’
Without Garnett in Boston, Paul Pierce would be the last remaining member of the Big Three that won the 2008 NBA championship together on the Celtics. However, Wojnarowski said there is a good chance that Pierce ends up in a Clippers uniform by the end of the summer as well.
‘The Clippers would be one of the teams after [Pierce],’ Wojnarowski said. ‘For Pierce, if he does become a free agent ‘ there were a lot of questions around the league ‘ if Boston does waive him, remember, somebody can claim him on waivers, pick up his deal when they buy him out and pay him the full freight. So that is possible. Boston could still trade Pierce and get something back for him. The Clippers don’t have just a clear path to getting Pierce if he becomes free, but certainly there is an opportunity there. You know for Paul it makes all the sense in the world. Home in L.A., back with KG and Doc, a chance to win with the Clippers. It makes all the sense if he does get free to end up with the Clippers as part of the crew.’
|Report: Celtics, Clippers resume trade talks again||06.19.13 at 6:16 pm ET|
As first suggested by SportsCity.com’s Mark Heisler on Wednesday morning, the Celtics and Clippers hoped to resume discussion about a potential deal for Kevin Garnett and Doc Rivers prior to the NBA draft on June 27.
As it turns out, the Clips reached out to the C’s on Thursday afternoon in order to reopen their dialogue about a package that would send DeAndre Jordan to Boston, according to Yahoo! Sports columnist Adrian Wojnarowski.
The Clippers reached out to the Celtics this afternoon to resume dialogue on a possible deal, league sources tell Y! Sports.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) June 19, 2013
According to various reports, most notably from Wojnarowski, discussion heated up this weekend but eventually fizzled out on Tuesday after disagreements over the inclusion of Eric Bledsoe, the contracts of Jason Terry and/or Courtney Lee, or a second No. 1 pick in a package that already included Jordan and one first-round pick.
|This is what Doc Rivers said about Boston in April||at 4:05 pm ET|
These questions from Dennis & Callahan came just days after the Boston Marathon bombings — during a period of healing when the NBA offseason was furthest from everyone’s mind — so keep that in mind when reading the following quotes from Celtics coach Doc Rivers, a part-time Back Bay resident expressing his city pride.
Still, Adrian Wojnarowski’s latest report — that “Rivers pushed for the Clippers partnership because of his desire to bypass a rebuilding process with Boston” — somehow cheapen Doc’s sentiment, particularly considering he signed a five-year, $35 million deal knowing Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce wouldn’t be on the 2015-16 Celtics.
Does this feel like your town?
“Absolutely. I grew up in Chicago, and that will always be in me. I grew up 18 years there, but I’ve been here nine years. For me, this was it. This is it for me as far as a city. That doesn’t mean someday I won’t get fired or get old or retire and come back like Phil Jackson may do, but this will never get out of you — this city, this place — and I think a lot of people who have been here feel that way.
“You probably don’t appreciate it, because you live here, but I really think a lot of it is because of the passion of the fans. You get engrossed in that. It becomes part of you, and you don’t get that in other places. I’ve coached in one other city, but I’ve played in a lot of other places, and it’s rare. The true passion is what I call it. Anyone joins on when you’re winning. Very few places are in all the time, and this is a city that is in all the time.”
|Reports: Celtics-Clippers deal dead, Danny Ainge wants Doc Rivers back||06.18.13 at 12:45 pm ET|
According to multiple reports, the Celtics and Clippers ended their trade discussions Tuesday after failing to reach a compromise.
ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne tweeted that the Clippers have walked away and are saying that talks are “off,” while The Boston Globe’s Baxter Holmes tweeted that Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge has confirmed the breakdown of negotiations.
The talks are said to have centered around the Celtics sending Kevin Garnett and coach Doc Rivers to Los Angeles for DeAndre Jordan and a first-round draft pick, but apparently the Celtics wanted a second first-round pick and the Clippers were not amenable to sweetening the pot.
Yahoo! Sports’ Adrian Wojnarowski reported that the Clippers also were hesitant to pay Rivers a $35 million extension as well as $3 million for Jordan’s trade kicker. Wojnarowski additionally tweeted that Ainge has called Rivers to update him on the situation and tell him that he still wants him back to coach the Celtics.
|Jeff Van Gundy on D&C: Doc Rivers has personality to pull off return to Boston if trade falls through||at 8:32 am ET|
ABC/ESPN basketball analyst Jeff Van Gundy joined Dennis & Callahan on Tuesday morning to offer his take on the reported Celtics-Clippers trade talks.
The Celtics are said to be considering sending Kevin Garnett along with coach Doc Rivers to Los Angeles. There has been widespread speculation that Rivers’ tenure in Boston is over either way, but Van Gundy isn’t so sure.
Said Van Gundy: “There’s a lot of people that don’t think he can still come back to Boston. I think it would work fine. He’s got the personality to pull it off. I think he’d be starting over with a different team anyway. It will be interesting to see what happens with Doc. Certainly these are interesting times in Celtic land.”
The Celtics reportedly would acquire young center DeAndre Jordan in the deal.
“I think everybody focuses on some maturity issues and his free throw shooting, and both need improvement,” Van Gundy said. “I like Jordan. I think he is a terrific athlete who has really improved defensively. He’s not like a physical guy, but he is a freak athlete who I think has shown great levels of improvement, where he came in as a second-round pick from Texas A&M after one year, not really accomplished in college. I think he’s continued to improve. Obviously, when you’re such a horrendous free throw shooter it limits how much you can play. But he is active, he can rebound.
“He’s a piece, if you’re trying to rebuild. Is he overpaid a little bit? Who’s not in the NBA? So he can just join the crowd on the long list of overpaid. But I like him better than how some people view him right now. I think he’s still an ascending player. If you’re going to go into a rebuild, he’s someone that’s intriguing.”
Touching on the NBA Finals — the Spurs have a 3-2 series lead heading into Tuesday night’s Game 6 in Miami — Van Gundy said there are intriguing story lines for both teams.
“There’s a lot on these two games for a lot of people on both sides,” Van Gundy said. “I think San Antonio played a great, great Game 5 offensively. I am so interested to see how they come out in Game 6. Do they do what Dallas did two years ago where they came in and they played a great game and beat Miami? Or do they take a sigh of relief and think that they have two games to win one, and so don’t play really as sharp or as desperate in Game 6 as they did in 5?
“And likewise, on the other hand, does the pressure get to Miami where they crack a little bit? Or have they been steeled by these last three years of long playoff runs, and do they show their championship mettle and find a way to win these two games? I’m really looking forward to it.”
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