The Friday Forum

Darius Soriano —  December 9, 2011

Dave Murphy is a long time FB&G reader and commenter (you know him as Dave M) and runs the great site Searching For Slava. He’ll be contributing more to FB&G this season and today he brings us the news of the day in his Friday Forum.

Three weeks ago today, the chances for an NBA season seemed increasingly dim. And yet it somehow came together in the wee hours between Friday and Saturday and the stampede was on. Training camp starts today as does the official opening bell for free agency contracts. With a compressed lead-up to opening day, the focus is squarely on possible trades and acquisitions. In particular, some Laker-centric rumors were raging late Thursday, rendering linkage attempts somewhat comical. It appeared thatPauwas headed to Houston and Lamar toNew Orleanswhile a guy named Chris Paul was sure to be arriving here. InHollywood. The land of screenplay rewrites. As this post headed off to press, events did a 180. Yep, you guessed it, David Stern and certain members of the hardliners (remember them?), killed the deal.

From filling holes on the cheap, to future luxury tax oblivion, to the greatest trade deal that never happened, here’s some stuff to make you scratch your head in wonder:

From Timothy Varner, Hoopspeak: It wouldn’t do for Chris Paul to go to Boston or NY or, even, heaven forbid, the other Los Angeles.  Chris Paul must play for the Lakers. The league benefits if the Lakers benefit and this was an ipso facto case of brazen favoritism. How else could one explain the Lakers giving up nothing more than the measly pairing of Pau Gasol and Lamar Odom? Thankfully, what we’ve learned over the past few months is that the NBA is protected by a righteous band of flaming cherubs—true crusaders for fairness and equality. Its owners. And they wouldn’t have it. Their shouts for justice rang out and David Stern responded by vetoing the deal. Dell Demps, we assume, is still allowed to trade Chris Paul, but not to a large market team, or at least not to that large market team.  Let him pick freely from the available talent in Milwaukee and Minnesota. In its entire history, the NBA has never seen such a lopsided trade. Ever. And if the NBA had allowed this event to set a precedent of questionable, even unthinkable, personnel maneuvers, then what? This sort of thing DOES NOT HAPPEN in the NBA. NBA owners do not turn their thumbs up to questionable player signings or lopsided trades. (The NBA later denied that it had acted in response to its owners; instead, the NBA claims it didn’t like the trade for basketball reasons. David Stern, in other words, just told Pau Gasol and Lamar Odom that they are no where near as talented as Chris Paul. SorryPau, but this isn’t even a race. You lost before you left the mark.)

From Kurt Helin, ProBasketballTalk: After things seemed to cool off on Wednesday, the Chris Paul trade rumors have heated up fast and furious on Thursday. That includes a three-way deal where Paul ends up with the Los Angeles Lakers, who give up Pau Gasol. The details are not yet clear, but Chris Paul would land with the Lakers, Pau Gasol would end up with the Rockets (who are looking for a big man) and the Hornets would get Kevin Martin, Luis Scola and some picks. Landing Paul would force a radical change change in offensive philosophy for new Lakers coach Mike Brown – he said he wanted to go with a “twin towers” idea with Gasol and Bynum, not unlike what the Spurs did with David Robinson and Tim Duncan – but he would do it for the best point guard in the league.

From Kurt Helin, ProbasketballTalk: The only public relations move worse than the league allowing Chris Paul to be traded to the Lakers after a five-month lockout allegedly about “competitive balance” is to have David Stern come in with an iron fist and kill the deal because owners complained. Well done NBA. Well done indeed.

From Brian Kamenetzky, Land O’Lakers: The Lakers had a real problem with outside shooting last season. Outside shooting happens to be something – really the one thing, from a basketball standpoint – Jason Kapono is very, very good at. Plus, he comes cheap. Mash those ingredients together, and the news from’s Dave McMenamin,the Lakers have agreed to a one-year, veteran’s minimum deal for about $1.2 million makes some sense. The 30-year old Artesia High graduate and former UCLA product’s career mark of 43.7 percent from downtown instantly making him the most accomplished bomber on the roster, and the Lakers don’t commit anything substantial in dollars or contract length.

Dexter Fishmore, Silver Screen and Roll: A new era in Lakerdom is about to begin. The trade for Pau Gasol almost four years ago sent the franchise back into the NBA stratosphere. Today, it appears, Pau is leaving town along with Lamar Odom, who himself arrived in Los Angeles as part of a franchise-shaking trade. In return for these two great Lakers, whom we’ll always love and think of as family, the team is acquiring Chris Paul. He needs no introduction. We all watched him torment the Lake Show in the first round of last year’s playoffs. He’s one of the best point guards of all time and a top-five player who’s still only 26 years old. Oh, honey.

Dexter Fishmore, Silver Screen and Roll: This is a deep stain on Stern’s reign as commissioner. He got bullied by small-market owners into prolonging the lockout, and they just did it to him again. His stewardship of the sport is a bad joke. It’s time for him to go.

Mark Medina, L.A. Times Lakers blog: As the entrance to the Lakers’ practice facility opened, Pau Gasol drove slowly toward the exit, waving to reporters walking nearby. There was nothing meant by the friendly gesture, but it surely symbolized his departure from the Lakers. Times Lakers reporter Mike Bresnahan is reporting hat the New Orleans Hornets will send Chris Paul to the Lakers in a three-team trade, while the Lakers will send Gasol to the Houston Rockets and Lamar Odom to the Hornets. In turn, the Lakers are also expected to acquire another frontcourt presence, possibly veteran Emeka Okafor. Once this becomes official Friday when training camp opens, some questions suddenly become irrelevant. The ones about whether the Lakers can upgrade their point guard needs, whether Lakers Coach Mike Brown keeps Derek Fisher as his starter or how Steve Blake will compete for more playing time no longer spark concern.

Mark Medina, L.A. Times Lakers blog: Lamar Odom is still a Laker, but he doesn’t sound completely thrilled about it. Odom admitted that he was “shocked” and “surprised” when told Thursday afternoon that the Lakers agreed to trade him to the New Orleans Hornets as part of a deal for point guard Chris Paul. But this evening when he heard that the NBA had killed the trade, Odom said he was in “total disbelief” over these new developments.

From Kevin Ding, The OC Register: Lakers don’t want to spend much, and one option remains combo guard Delonte West, who played in Cleveland under new Lakers coach Mike Brown. West is in interesting personality and toldSLAM Magazine’s Tzvi Twersky in September how he was on house arrest, wearing an ankle bracelet monitor when not playing basketball for the Celtics at NA arenas last season because of his arrest for weapons possession in 2009. West, 28, is a definite talent with a sweet shot (37.3 percent career 3-point shooter) who would/could even take most of the point-guard playing time away from Steve Blake and Derek Fisher. But he also would like the best paycheck he can: To help make ends meet, he took a job as a Regency Furniture Showrooms delivery man during the lockout.

From Andy Kamenetzky, Land O’Lakers: This is an absolute disaster for the NBA. It creates the appearance of a league office, not to mention players, at the mercy of a spite-driven agenda by owners. If Quazimoto, Anita Ward and Tattoo from “FantasyIsland” all joined forces to ring a 10-ton bell, it wouldn’t make this much noise. And once that bell’s been rung, you can’t go back in time. And beyond the muck Stern submerged his league into, for the Lakers, a season already filled with question marks and the complications of a compressed schedule just grew even stickier.

Jeff Miller, the OC Register: Thank you, Pau Gasol. In case you’ve forgotten, Gasol’s arrival here in 2008 only marked a rebirth for the Lakers, and more importantly, Kobe Bryant. He helped this franchise to two NBA titles and a third Finals appearance. He was an anchor in the middle stabilizing a team that teetered. He was the reason Bryant – and, in turn, all the Lakers and their fans – believed again. If not for Gasol, who knows where this team might have gone in the spring of ‘08? One thing’s certain: All the way to the NBA Finals oppositeBoston would not have been the ultimate destination.

Kevin Ding, the OC Register: Former Lakers coach Phil Jackson foresaw this controversy back on Dec. 29, 2010, saying about the day Paul demands a trade: “Who’s going to pull the button on it? When Chris says he has to be traded, how’s that going to go? … Someone’s going to have to make a very nonjudgmental decision on that part that’s not going to irritate anyone else in the league.” 

Ending with Phil Jackson’s crystal ball statement seems as fitting a way as any, to close out one of the strangest days ever in Lakers history. The next time a Friday roundup is posted, it’ll be the verge of our “exhibition season” – two games against the Clippers at Staples, on the 19th and 22nd.  And then, our season-opener against the Bulls on Christmas day, the first leg of our lone triple-header, three games in three nights. With a new head coach, and who-knows-who on the team, the season promises to be memorable. Enjoy the weekend and what is sure to be an active few days of discussion about the Chris Paul era that never was. ToPau and Lamar – thanks for the memories, goodbye and welcome back!

-Dave Murphy


Darius Soriano

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to The Friday Forum

  1. “Enjoy the weekend and what is sure to be an active few days of discussion about the Chris Paul era that never was. ToPau and Lamar – thanks for the memories, goodbye and welcome back!”



  2. It’s not really Stern’s fault – on the conference call, the owners said that they wanted parody.


  3. I was worried about the trade going through, but now that it is vetoed, I’m seriously worried about the trade remaining vetoed.

    Hope the deal is ressurected after owners of the three involved teams appeal, else I’ll have a hard time saying I’m a basketball fan without a smirk on my face.


  4. Someone in the last post said it perfectly: Dan Gilbert is determined to ruin the NBA with his bitterness.

    But Gilbert’s email should not absolve the other owners. Mark Cuban was one of the most vocal behind this. He doesn’t want to pay his team to come back and defend their title, and wants to bring us down with him.

    The best part of Gilbert’s email that few are talking about:

    Gilbert didn’t just complain because the Lakers were getting a star. ]He complained because LAL’s luxury tax payments would decrease, meaning he pockets less money. Gilbert is nothing more than a beggar. He has no pride, he is interested only in scrounging for change in Jerry Buss’s pockets.

    It’s time for the Lakers organization to make a statement. Dr. Buss supported Stern through all the revenue sharing nonsense. Dr. Buss singlehandedly brought up the stature of this league. He needs to make a statement and remind Stern who exactly he is screwing over.

    With all that said, I’m glad we don’t lose our frontline.

    Our players can respond two ways:

    1) Realize how close they were to having their legacies ending, and use that as motivation. Pau, if he stays in LA and continues to win, may be on track for the HOF. Gasol/Odom should realize not to take anything for granted and work even harder, use it as motivation, and play angry.

    2) They dislike playing for an organization where they don’t feel wanted, no longer trust the organization, and our chemistry is thrown into a funk. This could submarine our chances very quickly. We’ve seen what Pau plays like when distracted and in a funk.

    It’ll probably be a combination of the two. Reportedly Odom won’t show up to camp, so looks like he’s starting out with #2.

    What can we do as fans?

    How do people feel about (if you’re already going to games) showing up to games with “David Stern must go” signs? If we can organize this across different cities/teams with enough people, it could be a loud statement. One of the few ways for fans to actually speak.

    The second way (impractical) is to boycott watching games. Watch on illegal Internet feeds instead of on TV. But realistically, this will never happen in enough numbers to make a statement. I’m just ticked and wish there was something we could do. Here’s hoping Jerry Buss makes a statement for us.


  5. So who gave stern the power to say that chris paul weighs more than gasol and odom together?

    Why didn’t he veto the gasol trade? nor the shaq trade?

    I didn’t like the trade but the fallout is dangerous. We have 2 disgruntled players who are key-players. They wouldn’t play their hearts out now that this thing happened. Didn’t Stern think of the repercussions?

    I’m greatly appalled with the NBA. Great teams find great ways to become better. While Dan Gilbert runs to Stern telling him how unfair the trade was. Why didn’t he bother trading Lebron while he had the chance. He knew fully well that there would be a good chance Lebron would leave without getting anything in return.


  6. The three teams are going to appeal. Assuming that there were subsequent deals planned (probably tentatively agreed on), and the appeal gets approved, I wonder if those subsequent deals will still be possible, or if the timing will be completely screwed up now.


  7. In money terms, Lakers were shedding off $27.6M for LO and Pau while could have acquired $ 16.3M in CP3 so it lacks more pieces or $$$’s too. Whatever, that was a good savings move by Mitch or Jimbo.

    Today is the first day of practice for MB’s team, he has some frazzled nerves in LO who may be reluctant to practice after being traded & back with his reality TV HQ. Did the Kardashians have a hand on this veto? Well, it is another exciting episode that Kloe could include his ex bro-in-law, Kris Humphries and her henpecked husband LO on their changing saga of their lives to hell and back. I think Pau is a Pro who could adjust with the situation, he knows that he is needed in the deal to make it happen.

    What will happen in the free agency come July, how can the Lakers accommodate incoming free agents and deal as well with their contracted agents, barring that no trade would ever materialize for the big market Lakers? How can they dump salaries and players when they could not even deal with Luke?


  8. Dan Gilbert should go back to being a loan shark.


  9. Occupy NBA


  10. #7. Latest report says the teams can’t appeal. NBA acted as owners of the team, so it’s being spun as the Hornets backing out. Essentially they’re saying it would be no different if Buss, who’s been in the hospital, found out this trade was about to go down, made a call, and said “deals off”. In that instance, the Lakers would have backed out.

    This smells something awful, but it is what it is.


  11. Can somebody here explain to me what DHoward is gonna do in New Jersey?


  12. Cp3 should piss off the nba and just opt out.


  13. I don`t envy Brown and his staff having to deal with Pau and LO,and the suspicion they influenced the trade. Let`s see if they can put all this in the backround and prepare for the 25th with both Pau and LO probably starting.


  14. From Gasol on twitter:

    New day my friends. On my way to El Segundo for the first day of training camp #staypositive #NBAisBack

    What is almost funny in all this is that small market owners are still big business in comparison to us normal fans. And now they are the ones complaining about how they suffer in the system of big NBA business.

    I was on the verge of deciding to not renew my intl. online league pass during the lockout fiasco. Of course the basketball junkie in me was checking yesterday to see if they were offering some kind of deal to win back fans. But now I’m terribly close to leaving it behind for good. If this deal stays off then the NBA doesn’t see a single Euro (the currency, not the player stereotype) from me. Bring on the pirated Laker streams!


  15. The first serious blow was the Donaghy scandal… After years of fans, players, and (most tellingly) gamblers screaming that the referees couldn’t be that bad on accident…

    The second blow was this lockout. Being slapped in the face with how silly it is to care about the “struggles” of millionaires that are owned by billionaires.

    This utter travesty, and honestly outright collusion, is too much. It is the third strike.

    I simply cannot justify being a fan of this league.

    Good luck to all of you, but I am out.


  16. I feel for Odom. Frustrating as a player, but no one has a bigger heart with all the turmoil he’s been through:

    Maybe I’ll see you there tomorrow [at practice],” Odom said. “But I doubt it. You don’t want to go to no place you’re not wanted. I’ll try to give them what they want as much as possible.”

    [(Emphasis mine). Hopefully this is just the acute stage and doesn’t linger for a long time. ]

    “Man, I’m just in total disbelief about all of this,” Odom continued. “They don’t want my services, for whatever reason. I don’t know what I’m supposed to do. I was proud to be a Laker, so I’ll try to help them in the process as much as possible.”


  17. If Chris Paul cannot be traded for two versatile big men — olympians, champions — then he cannot be traded period.

    On the other hand, can we still trade Pau for Kevin Martin, Luis Scola, and a first round pick? That would be quite an upgrade in defense, rebounding, and outside shooting.

    [Apologies if this is trade speculation, but that was basically the deal on the table if you remove the Hornets.]


  18. Only promising thing coming out of this is that it seems like Jimmy Buss wants to be an agressive owner and make big moves.


  19. I normally don’t listen to Stephen A Smith but couldn’t help myself when I found out he had an interview with LO yesterday.

    LO was absolutely heartbroken and lost. That’s the most shattered I’ve heard an athlete be after a trade. As a Laker fan and LO admirer, I was so depressed listening to him.


  20. I fortold a trade back in February 2, 2011 on this site.

    post #87. I have the futuresight! 😀


  21. When all is said and done Paul will be on the Lakers and Stern will be punished. Don’t worry… Unlike Stern I’m a fair ruler. The players will vote to decide where Stern has to live for the remainder of his contract.


  22. Where do I register my vote to have the Boston/Orland trade voided? Big Baby for Brandon Bass sounds way too lopsided for Boston.


  23. I wonder if the Lakers and Houston can now work out something with Orlando along these lines:

    Houston trades:
    KMartin (Orl), Scola (Lakers), Dragic (LA or Orl), 1st rounder (Orl

    Orlando trades:
    Dwight and Turk to Lakers

    Lakers give up Gasol.

    This is a positive way of thinking this out. So Houston would be the ‘enabler’ team in any situation. For them, getting Pau was worth shedding all those players, since they can shed room in their salary cap to pursue Nene or gasp, Marc Gasol! I especially like the thought of a 3 way trade including Bynum + Martin for Howard, which would leave us with a PF combo of Odom/Scola. We have been thinking mostly along the lines of a 2 way trade (LAL and ORL) but now that we have the Houston factor, completely opens up the possibilities. can you realistically tell me that Brook Lopez + 2 1st rounders beats KMartin + Bynum for DHoward and Turk?


  24. How are LA going to focus on winning a championship after this debacle? Odom and Gasol will have the wrong mentality going into the season if they stay in LA (which is what it is looking like as the hours go by).

    Esprit de corps won’t be good.


  25. And that was close… I almost thought players were allowed to change teams. In my opinion players should be forced to stay with their teams for their entire career. What next? They are allowed to vote? Back to the hardwood and do what your owners tell you.


  26. News out of NY is that the Nets are near to closing the deal on Nene given the likelihood that the breaking tampering allegations surrounding D12 will hamper their ability to close that trade before Nene finds another home:



  27. Can we just do Odom and Pau for D12 now?


  28. You know that blocking the trade was a bad move by Stern when even Simmons writes a column criticizing Stern.

    I feel bad for Pau and Odom but most of all for Mike Brown. I guess we will find out very quickly if he is up to the task of dealing with the spotlight and egos of coaching the LA Lakers!


  29. Sign and share (Facebook, twitter, email) the petition requesting NBA reverse their decision:


  30. @5

    Cuban is just licking his chops right now. He was clearing space to make a run at Deron Williams next year; now he has another target in Chris Paul who will be pissed and likely very determined not to go back to the Hornets with very few options in free agency.


  31. this “the-hornets-got-a-great-deal!” propaganda needs to be addressed.

    why would the rebuilding hornets want a mediocre team? is a team doomed to middling draft picks and 1st round exits(maybe) attractive to a prospective owner?

    i feel like stern made the right basketball decision. you want expiring contracts, not the expensive/long-term deals of scola and martin. you want draft picks, something more valuable than the knicks’ pick–which is going to be in the 20s. and you want young prospects with more upside than goran dragic, who is two years removed from his 15 minutes of fame.


  32. Can we just finally admit that Gumble was right?



    If you think your voice as a fan matters, drop the league a line ….


  34. in my opinion, there is a good chance this leads to the a split in the league; i.e. a new league being formed that excludes all the deadwood, including that p***k cuban. i curse myself for being happy for the mavericks finally winning a ring.


  35. Eh… I’m flip flopping again. I just think Stern is a genius. Like I said last night I think he always intended to only momentarily block the trade to satisfy the owners. This way the Lakers get a superstar, the Hornets get a great deal and don’t lose CP3 for nothing, and the NBA gets even more publicity than over the desision with all this mess. Just genius.


  36. @33

    The Hornets got 3 borderline all star players, guys who are very capable to very good starters, plus a decent backup PG to Jack and a draft pick that likely would have been around 15-25 in one of the deeper drafts in recent memory. That is a GREAT position to be in, since nothing says that they would be forced to KEEP all those players. They likely could have easily flipped them for “building blocks” or whatever, or they could have kept them and arguably been BETTER than they were last season.

    Kevin Martin is extremely efficient for his position, and is basically an automatic 20 ppg scorer.

    Luis Scola is basically Pau Gasol-lite. A very good post player with some range on his shot. Not a great defender, but a guy who can give you 15-20 ppg and 7-10 rpg.

    Lamar Odom was a sixth man of the year last year, a great rebounder, great ball handler for his size, and on a VERY reasonable contract that has a very cheap team buyout next year. His contract is very marketable to many teams because he’s an effective player and he can be bought out.

    This was a great deal for the Hornets. About as good a deal as any team who was trading their franchise player could expect. And now that the trade has been vetoed, there is no way any team gives up anything reasonable for Paul with the uncertainty of whether or not the trade will be allowed and they are likely to lose him next year to Dallas for nothing. And since the deal as stated wasn’t actually legal to go through, they likely would have had to include someone else which would have let them shed some salary as well (maybe Okafor).


  37. Chibi –
    You’re missing the point. Don’t you think the Hornets tried to get a better deal out there? Based on everything we’ve seen and what everyone has reported, this was the best deal they could get.


  38. 37)
    You’re preaching to the altor boy here


  39. 25, 37,

    Whatever stats are there, they are not Chris Paul. Lakers were willing to part with LO and Pau because of achieving a particular chemistry of the best PG, best SG and a decent young Center. CP3 is also aligned with another star, DH and his closest friend. They have planned this move during the lockout days, perhaps going back to the Olympics in Beijing.

    Secondly, Gasol is a very important player and the best Euro on hand in NBA. Nowitsky maybe the Champ but he could not propel Germany in the International competition. I don’t think Scola or Kevin M who have been moving to different teams are enough to meet parity of Pau. Gasol & Bynum will only be traded for a price that will make the Lakers better, not the other way around of experimenting no-name journeymen.


  40. 32. Okay, let’s assume you’re interested in buying an NBA team. In fact, you are quite a risk taker (or you are Brad Pitt) and you specifically want to buy the NO Hornets. Would you rather buy them today, featuring a beyond disgruntled (furious, actually) star who is leaving for sure the second the season ends, or do you think the team had greater value yesterday with a host of talented new players? The idea that this was a ‘basketball decision’ is obscene and I can’t wait to watch Stern having to defend that idea publicly.

    They just lost so much value for that team under the guise of the opposite. Anyone else smell a whiff of Orwell?


  41. Good article by Wilbon, small market owners don’t mind collecting the proceeds resulting from the Lakers being the elite franchise, but the Lakers are not allowed to improve themselves? So the Knicks and Cuban can protest the Lakers getting Paul so they can maneuver to get him themselves?


  42. This is going to be bad for the Lakers because until the decision is reversed and allowed to happen(I think it will) you have all the uncertainty and frustration these traded players feel but what will end up making it worse is that once its fixed, if Dwight Howard has been dealt to the Nets, the Lakers are worse and Kobe is not getting any younger.

    If its not fixed, the NBA has no credibility regarding any future trades between anyone.

    It would be one thing if the Lakers got Paul for less then a better deal that was out there, but New Orleans did well the Lakers had the players to make the deal. They overpaid for Paul because his ending up in LA gets Howard and a bad contract done for Bynum. The Lakers simply have the pieces to make this happen, they are not getting stars for cheap like the Heat who got two stars for nothing.

    Whether its the Lakers or anyone else, if they have the talent to make the best offers for players, these deals should not be allowed to be undone because other owners dont like a big city team getting better.

    I am one pissed off Laker fan because unless this team ends up with Paul asap and can bid fairly for Howard, the team is now worse then if we had done nothing.


  43. I have a hard time believing that the League office won’t reverse this decision, there is simply too much at stake. Because if Paul can’t be traded to LA he can’t be traded ANYWHERE. On top of that the bad PR this is getting I think would force them to reconsider the trade, on top the of the potential lawsuit they may face from Paul.

    On another note I do feel terrible for Odom because I love the guy and it tore me up to hear him so upset ……… BUT how could he honestly not see this coming? How could his agent not have warmed him that he was going to be traded after the debacle that was the sweep by the hands of the Mavericks? I mean we all knew there was a strong chance, how on God’s green earth could he not? You either play well and earn your spot or you are gone by trade or cuts, it’s quite simple.


  44. Is Dwight at the LAX already?

    I didn’t like the CP3 trade at all, we’re giving up way too much.

    Also, DH should be our #1 priority.

    Am I crazy or Dwight for Bynum (maybe Odon) is a fair deal?



  45. demps job isn’t to make the team better. his job is to ready the team for sale, because the nba can’t own it forever.

    the nba could not tell demps that, but you can bet he’s got the message now.

    expect some team to some combination of paul/okafor/ariza for a couple of kwame browns, prospects, and picks.


  46. In other news Luke Walton is retiring because of a degenerative back . . . . . wait sorry I meant Brandon Roy


  47. I just think the Lakers can’t get Dwight without having CP3


  48. Maybe the NBA wants to ensure Lebron wins the next 7 titles in a row and becomes the next Bill Russell.


  49. Chibi, are you freaking kidding me? A GM’s job isn’t to make the team better? His job is to make them attractive for potential buyers? Are you from Mars? Your logic makes absolutely no sense. Teams will want to buy a better team not a team full of crap. You don’t value the players the Hornets were trying to trade for but you know what everyone else involved thought it was a fair deal all around. That’s why you aren’t an NBA GM.


  50. I got the wrong numbers, my recent post should be addressed to #38 only.


  51. Trying to form any understanding for certain owners’ actions is not unlike asking a screaming, red-faced, tantrum-throwing child, “why?” Ultimately, I am sure of these things: Stern’s a dead man walking in this league. The owners who complain and interfere the most, will never sniff a title. The Lakers will continue to be the premiere franchise in this league, for a very long time.

    Let’s bind the wounds, fill the gaps, and go after another ring.


  52. Re: 47

    What you are describing is exactly why the NBA never should have purchased the Hornets in the first place. It is an absolute conflict of interest for them to try to run the team with input from the 29 new owners of the team who also own the franchises that are COMPETING with the Hornets. There is no way for them to make objective decisions for that franchise, hence they had to install a neutral 3rd party to manage the team, which was Demps and the president of the team. Well, they just went over the heads of the people they themselves put in charge, again, conflict of interest.

    The stupid thing is that they had a buyer for the team that would have been willing to pay more than the NBA actually paid for it, only Stern refused to sell to him because the guy refused to guarantee not to move the team. There were likely other people who would have been willing to purchase the team and keep them in New Orleans for a lower price, and Stern refused to even consider them and purchased the team for more than it was worth to keep NBA franchise prices artificially high. What a fustercluck that Phil Jackson and many others anticipated the very second the NBA made the idiotic decision to buy the team.


  53. I also think that Stern will reverse his veto (or approve the trade with some tweaks). I think it’s likely that he panicked yesterday after hearing the complaints from the owners, and made a rash decision without thoroughly analyzing the situation. The fact that he backtracked on the reason why he vetoed, from “basketball reasons” to improving the chances of selling the team, suggests that he underestimated the ensuing fallout from his decision. I would expect that the backlash we are seeing today (which will only grow by the day), Dan Gilbert’s email, and most of the media crying foul, would force Stern to do the right thing and approve the trade. His decision can potentially be a permanent black eye for the NBA, if it isn’t already, and as the backlash continues to grow, even the self serving owners who opposed this trade has to come to their senses at some point, and realize that the integrity of the league is at stake. Will that be enough for the owners…I mean Stern, to eventually approve the trade? I would think so, but at the same time, I’m a bit hesitant to underestimate the stupidity, greed and power mongering from some of these owners.


  54. if i were CP3, i would announce that I am going to the lakers next year, and will not give any other team a chance to bid on me — effectively reducing his trade value to $0. then i would foul out of each game this season within the first two minutes.

    what would really be funny, if all the star players were “sick” whenever their team played in cleveland. let dan gilbert suck on those lemons for awhile.

    all of a sudden the animus i felt towards lebron is gone. so i guess that’s a kind of silver lining.


  55. @43:

    As Wilbon and others brought up, this whole thing may be motivated by NBA owners’ desire to be the NFL.

    Trouble is, the NBA (if this thing stands) will be lucky to be the NHL when the dust settles with fans defecting. I mean when fans like us are headed for the door, what hope does the NBA have of attracting and keeping more casual fans, especially in a post-lockout season?!?


  56. #51, would you rather buy a team ready to be rebuilt, armed with cheap prospects and lottery picks or a team that has to be dismantled before it has to be rebuilt?

    what kind of leverage are you supposed to have in your dealings with other teams once you have to trade guys like scola and martin? with dragic and odom? do you think teams are going to be climbing over themselves to make a deal with you?

    they’re going to dictate the terms of the agreement, not you.

    and what are you going to market to your fanbase? the future? hope and optimism? a fresh start? a new leaf? or an era of mediocrity and turmoil?


  57. Colin Cowherd speculated the league will wait to make sure Howard goes somewhere outside of LA and then Ok the trade


  58. Aloha

    I was a little nervous about this trade because there wasn’t any confirmation, that we would be getting a big back with Paul. That would have left us with Character as our starting PF and maybe Metta as the back up? even if we also got Howard, there would have been a scary lack of depth.

    That said, the trade not going through has screwed us even more. Somehow Mike Brown, a new head coach will have to pull this team back together. I personally thought that if we could add a serviceable PG and a shooter we could win it all again. But the time wasted on this trade and the short pre-season window has left us behind in obtaining the pieces we need. And of course our trade pieces are suited more for trading for stars then role players.

    Conspiracy? My question is, if the league wasn’t going to allow the trade, why didn’t they approach the Lakers when the rumors began to swirl? I believe they intentionally waited to the last second to put the Lakers behind the 8 ball.

    The NBA “where corruption happens!”


  59. tim donaghy was piker compared to these super genuises. the nba will be competing with roller derby for fans and air time (and credibility), by the time dan gilbert and mark cuban are done working their magic. why not just announce right now who won the championship this season, and forgo the expense of actually playing.


  60. More on the Nets problems trading for D12 in light of the Russian Mafia’s dinner with Howard last night in Miami:

    “If found to have had the meeting with Howard, the Nets could face stiff fines, a loss of draft picks and perhaps even lose the right to sign him as a free agent next summer or trade for him.”


  61. If Howard goes elsewhere I suspect the trade, as constituted, will be dead because the Lakers will no longer agree to it.


  62. @55 – it would be nice but I don’t think it’ll happen. Events are unfolding too quickly in this hyper-shortened FA period. The teams will move on.


  63. 55. LT mitchell. Never underestimate Stern’s stubbornness.


  64. 61)
    Good point


  65. I think the trade for NO was pretty good from a rebuilding stand point. Odom’s deal is only partially guaranteed next season which makes him a good trade chip, Dragic is a cheap contract and Martin only has two years left and is a talented player. It gives them some pieces they could use to pick up some draft picks and younger talent. No one is going to trade for Paul if he says he won’t resign their. Unless GS gives up Curry and paul says he will resign there, they won’t get a better offer.


  66. L.O. a no show at the opening of Training Camp today … Welcome to L.A. Mike Brown


  67. Chibi, I don’t want to have to write you an essay on things you clearly do not understand. So just read reports and listen to analysts and experts, you are the only person I have read saying that New Orleans didn’t get the best possible trade that they could have. You think they will get a better deal now? Or even have a chance to trade Paul? Keep dreaming, they were better off yesterday than they are today. The whole point is nobody was offering anything like you proposed, the Hornets took the very best offer on the table. Now the team may have nothing to show with Paul possibly walking in free agency.


  68. 66, odom showed up. he was late, but he showed up.


  69. Courtesy of Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports

    As teams wait to re-engage Hornets on Chris Paul, here’s one executive: “Truly feel for those guys, but we’re all gonna lowball them now.”


  70. Once the decision to uphold this veto is affirmed by the league, Jerry Buss should issue a statement excoriating David Stern for his gross abuse of power.

    The rationale offered by Stern is that this deal was not good for the Hornets. That is absurd on its face, and represents an absolute violation of the league’s fiduciary responsibility to the Hornets.

    The actual motivation for the veto was to prevent a “large market” team from packing its roster with superstars, but this line of reasoning cannot possibly stand the test of time. Tampering aside, how can New Jersey be permitted to trade for Dwight Howard? They have a billionaire owner and even before their upcoming move to Brooklyn they are part of the largest media market in the country.

    With this precedent, there is no way the Lakers can trade for Howard either. If the commissioner retains the authority to approve or disapprove any trade, how can Stern allow the Lakers to trade for Howard? Is it not exactly the same outcome?

    That the league owns the Hornets is irrelevant if a majority of owners can persuade the commissioner to use his authority to veto a trade. Stern simply used his “ownership” argument in vetoing the Paul trade, but that shouldn’t stop him from using his “commisioner’s final approval of all NBA trades” argument for stopping Dwight from coming to L.A.

    Finally, if the league’s position is that Chris Paul cannot be traded to a large market team, why wasn’t this position articulated much earlier to all NBA teams who have been working on prospective Paul deals all week long?

    David Stern is a hugely overrated and overpaid snob who has taken credit for the explosion in popularity of a league that was caused by great players like Magic, Bird, Jordan, Shaq, Kobe & Lebron. The truth of the matter is that Jerry Buss, with his enormous risk-taking, has done more to grow the popularity of the NBA on the world stage than David Stern could ever dream of doing–and yet Stern just stabbed Buss in the back. Nice.


  71. Love that quote from Pau on his Twitter. Before this all started, I was really looking forward to seeing how he rebounds from the end last year.

    What is the ruling on trading a player you just received in a trade? Even if you don’t package the player for another one, are you not allowed to trade him for 6 months or so?

    Even if that were the case, NO could technically trade Paul to Houston for the pieces they were to receive from Houston. Houston would do so with the wink-wink understanding they’d trade Paul to LA after the 6 month period or whatever. Sounds illegal, but I’m trying to be creative. And we would send Odom to NO in a separate deal. Breaking a 3-way deal into several 2-team deals. This would be contingent on the league letting Paul go to Houston, obviously.

    Better yet, let Paul play out the year in Houston. Then at the end of the year, we do a S&T with Houston. In that case, Houston would be glad to get anything in return so we wouldn’t give up Pau. Morey doesn’t like to let value leave without getting value in return.

    If Paul can get traded to a team where he won’t stay, that team could conceivably S&T him to us at the end of the year. The main problem is that NO is league-owned. This could be a possible way around that.

    I realize how crazy that sounds. More than anything, I’m happy with the team we have. I’m also tired