Not much news, but:
â€¢ Brian Grant is out the door. Not a surprise and I donâ€™t have much to add that hasnâ€™t been said before. With this Jerry Buss will save at least $25 million over the next two years in luxury tax money, and if I were in his Italian loafers Iâ€™d do the same (the Lakers are expected to pay about $75 million in salary, the luxury tax level is $61 million, so this keeps the Lakers at or below that threshold).
However, right now there is no backup center (unless you count Vlade) and the backup four is a combination of Slava and Brian Cook, two guys who are power forwards in name only. While priority one for Mitch is a point guard, if he is trying to get Derek Anderson to take less than the full MLE he needs to use any money saved for depth in the bigs.
â€¢ I find the situation in Atlanta fascinating â€” owners fighting it out in court about a trade. My two cents â€” Joe Johnson is not worth that inflated contract alone, forget the two first-round draft picks thrown in. Johnson is good but his numbers from last season â€” particularly his per-game numbers â€” are inflated because of the team he played on and pace he played at. He fits well in Phoenix, but in Atlanta?
If Iâ€™m the Hawks, I try to go more of the route of Chicago, building smart through the draft and develop a core. Eventually you are going to have to overpay to get a free agent to come there (itâ€™s the only way a player will go to the Clippers of the East) but now is not the time and Johnson is not the guy.
â€¢ For what itâ€™s worth, Eric Pincus is reporting Shareef Abdur-Rahim to Sacramento is a strong possibility.
â€¢ Thereâ€™s no way around it â€” moving sucks. I feel like boxes are invading my subconscious and appearing in my dreams.