Friday, February 13, 2009

Getting our hopes up

Truckloads of salt please:
It says here, the Cavaliers, Lakers and Heat are the lone teams who should seriously consider obtaining Stoudemire's sub-standard services. Sunday's All-Star start is a gift from an adoring, oblivious public. He'd have no problem deferring to LeBron James, Kobe Bryant and Dwyane Wade because their areas of expertise don't conflict with his, and they're genuine franchise players . . . whereas he pretends to be.

Last I looked, Stoudemire hasn't exactly proved capable of carrying an affluent team to ultimate glory.

Judging by what the Cavs have to offer - as mentioned, expiring contracts and talented youngbloods - and Kerr's connection and affection for Danny Ferry - I'm guessing it'll be Kevin McHale-Danny Ainge revisited . . . unless L.A. makes Lamar Odom available.
Now, look, I'm not the biggest Amare guy (and this rumor is from Peter Vecsey) but this would be a delight. I was never a huge fan of his game (nice first step, though his jumper has improved) and his defense is atrocious (he let Varejao drive right past him on Wednesday night). But if you can pick him up for Wally+Hickson+picks, you do that and don't look back.

Now, I don't really think that the Cavs have a legit shot (and they shouldn't) but they have a couple of things working in their favor.

First, the Suns owner is nortoriously stingy. So if they don't want to take on a lot of salary, Wally's deal (and Snow's) would be mighty attractive. Plus, Hickson is a legit prospect (he was even mentioned in Simmons's trade value column).

Secondly, Stoudemire has been on the market for practically the entire season and the Suns have gotten no decent offers. There may not be a good deal out there for Amare's potential worth, so they may have to settle anyways.

Third, Ferry and Kerr were teammates in both Cleveland and San Antonio. There's a history and friendship there and it could help grease those gears.

And fourth, but probably one of the most important points, is this:

There is one indication that Suns trade talk involving forward Amaré Stoudemire has not advanced far: His agent has not heard from the Suns about any proposals.

Former National Basketball Players Association Executive Director Charlie Grantham, Stoudemire's new agent this season, equates this portion of trade exploration as fantasy basketball, with the majority of the teams exploring the possibilities. When it gets to reality, Grantham said, he will want Stoudemire to have a say, because he will not want to go just anywhere.

------ [snip]------

If the Suns get serious about a trade involving Stoudemire before Thursday's deadline, Grantham expects to be consulted.

"A place that may be a real good deal for them may not be the best place for us," said Grantham, who is in Phoenix. "In that case, we would not be interested in signing an extension. I would think most teams would not want to rent him for a year and a half. They would want him to sign for more years and know that he's interested in staying."

Grantham said he would not discourage a deal with a team based on market size but added that the potential for a team's success would be a factor.

"Every player wants to go where they have a chance to win a championship," he said. "When you're thrust into the position he is, you hope you have some input there."

Now, Amare wanting a say and Amare getting a say are two totally different things. But the fact that he wants to go to a winner (and market size isn't an issue) has got to work in the Cavs' favor.

I really don't think Stoudemire will end up in wine & gold. There are too many teams (Bulls, Heat, Blazers) that can offer a better package of players.

But right now everything is point towards the Suns getting a crappy deal for Amare. And the Cavs DO have the pieces to form a crappy deal that a cheapskate might find enticing (and they fit the criteria that Stoudemire would want).

Though it's fun to dream, right? A starting line up of Williams-West-LeBron-Amare-Z? I mean, Christ that's a rough five. Now, the Cavs would be banking on Stoudemire catching the defensive bug and I have no idea how that'll play out (Mike Brown would have to work some magic. And he'd need LeBron to set a firm line).

(I'd say say Shaq is the more likely option. But with this economy and the Robert Sarver being a cheap ass...)


graham said...

Hey Ben, I was wondering: your posts also go on - do you have any insight into the poster "Wine & Gold"? I understand he works for the Cavs, but has this ever been verified, an if so, how so?

I see his name on different boards, but I haven't seen anything that would confirm he is who he says he is.

Ben said...

I'm fairly certain he works for the Cavaliers. RCF has a couple of actual insiders who post there. I've tried to leave him alone for the most part, bc a lot of the (young) people who post there bombard him with questions.

But from everything I know (and from what I can tell) he seems pretty legit.

If you see someone by the name of Heath or something similar, he is decidedly not an insider.

Erik said...

There is no way an Amare deal gets done without a third team getting involved. Wally, Hickson and a first-rounder don't get this done.

A larger deal involving Snow's contract and more young talent headed to Phoenix has a better chance. Not a great chance, but I think there is virtually zero chance this deal gets done without the involvement of a third team. And that is a huge hurdle to overcome.

The good news is that both of Ferry's major trades so far have been three-team deals, so Ferry has had success in finding a third wheel in the past.

Ben said...

well, either they need a third team or kerr reluctantly takes the deal at the 11th hour.

geoffrey said...

I wouldn't get our hopes up. Every team in the league has inquired about Amare. I just don't see how the Cavs can give the best offer.

I am fairly certain if the Suns were going to take a Wally/Hickson/Andy/Pick package, it'd probably be done by now.

At the end of the day, I am fine if we end up keeping Hickson and our draft pick. There are many ways to build a team and make Lebron want to stay.

I am, however, all for making at least ONE trade. If we don't want to part with Wally that is fine by me, but that means Eric Snow must be moved for something or someone.

Erik said...

ESPN is reporting that the Suns are not going to trade Amare before the deadline. At yesterday's Alvin Gentry presser, both the coach and Steve Kerr professed a desire to get back to fun-'n-gun basketball.

It really wouldn't make sense for the Suns to blow up their roster without giving Gentry a chance to make it work. Gentry holds the title of interim coach, but it seems more like he's auditioning for the full time job than serving as a placeholder.

Unless something unforeseen materializes in the next two days, I think Ferry is going to stand pat, cross his fingers and hope that Joe Smith isn't traded to a contender. Ferry probably views a Joe Smith buyout as his ace in the hole.

graham said...

It looks like Joe Smith will be headed to NOH, and they likely will use him in their playoff run.

I have to say, I think its a big mistake if the Cavs don't trade to improve, even if its a small move. I have a bad feeling we'll look back and see a missed opportunity. We have the assets for a trade of different kinds, and we're on the verge of leaving a couple bullets in the chamber.

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