LAKERS UNABLE TO INK A DEAL WITH HORNETS AND ROCKETS FALLS THROUGH
Sun, 11 Dec 2011 08:35 PM EST
The L. A. Lakers suddenly withdrew from the Chris Paul sweepstakes Sat. night after more than Twenty-four hours of unsuccessful tries to restructure a three-team handle the New Orleans Hornets and Houston Rockets that would meet with the approval of NBA commissioner David Stern, according to sources close to the process. NFL lines
The Lakers informed the league-owned Wasps and the Rockets they pulled out of the stonewalled deal, sources said, and instead trading Lamar Odom to the Dallas Mavericks. Dallas is able to accommodate Odom’s $8.9 million salary without surrendering any valued assets courtesy of a new trade exception made through the Mavericks’ three-team handle Long Island and Washington earlier Sat. that landed Tyson Chandler with the Knicks. NFL betting lines
Sources recounted the Lakers, in return for shedding the unhappy Odom’s salary and sending him to a team one source close to the situation recounted he is “excited” to join, will receive Dallas’ 2012 first-round pick and presumably extra draft issues.
The Golden State Warriors are also predicted to stay in the bidding, with the Warriors’ Stephen Curry and the Clippers’ Eric Gordon thought to be the two players coveted most by the Hornets’ basketball people throughout their assertive search for a Paul deal.
The Lakers, in the meantime, will now focus on attempting to outduel the New Jersey Nets in trade talks for Dwight Howard. The Orlando Magic center publicly confirmed Sat. that he has asked to be traded, with the Nets, Lakers and Mavs on his wish list.
The press reported earlier Saturday that the Hornets, Lakers and Rockets had presented a new framework of the deal that Stern vetoed Thursday. Sources say the groups kept attempting to tweak the deal throughout, only to be met by continuing resistance from the league office, which wanted the Hornets to come away with more youth and / or draft picks in return for the face of the franchise.
The original three-team trade construction called for Gasol to land in Houston and the Hornets to obtain Kevin Martin, Luis Scola and Odom to move into their starting lineup as well as guard Goran Dragic and a 2012 first-round pick. Yet sources say disappointment bubbled over Saturday as the various tweaks suggested by the teams — who attempted to bring further teams into the deal in pursuit of more assets to meet Stern’s requirements — were consistently knocked back.
As one source near to the talks announced late Saturday : “We were all done with it” by the time the Lakers made a decision to walk off.
The Hornets remain under stress to discover a palatable deal for Paul, who can become an independent agent in July 2012 and has said to the franchise that he doesn’t plan to sign an extension. In addition to New Orleans’ natural wish to find a new home for Paul as quickly as possible to circumvent the kind of soap opera that engulfed the Denver Nuggets last season until they traded Carmelo Anthony in Feb, league officers now technically in control of the Wasps also know the National Basketball Player’s Association has hinted at soon chasing legal action on Paul’s behalf if a new trade is not hashed out.
Paul spoke extensively with the union on Thursday, after Stern squashed the first three-team trade, about what legal options were available. It is yet to be seen the way in which the Players Association will react to Saturday’s events, but sources told Broussard that union representatives told Cruel on Friday they would pursue litigation if a deal isn’t consummated by Monday.
The Clippers, at least, present a credible trade partner for Paul, given all the young assets possessed by the Lakers’ Staples Center co-tenants. Sources say that Al-Farouq Aminu, Eric Bledsoe and the expiring contract of Chris Kaman are among the pieces that have been supplied to New Orleans this week, but it is believed the Clippers can clinch a trade for Paul if they include either Gordon or Minnesota’s unguarded 2012 first-round pick in the deal.
The Clippers, to date, have been not willing to offer either Gordon or the Minnesota pick without an assurance from Paul that he is happy to stay to with Blake Griffin’s team past this season.
Recovering from the slumped deal could be toughest for the Rockets, who so badly coveted Gasol and, according to sources, believed that acquiring the Spaniard would give them a powerful likelihood of signing Denver Nuggets independent agent Nene to play center. Houston is now anticipated try to sign Nene or Samuel Dalembert as its substitute for the retired Yao Ming, even though without Gasol as a frontcourt partner, while also making an attempt to mend fences with Martin and Scola, who were held out of practice Saturday and thought they were on the edge of being sent to New Orleans.
As for Dallas, Odom’s arrival is an intriguing and fast reaction to owner Mark Cuban’s call to let Chandler go in free agency, which was met with much dissatisfaction locally given the 7-footer’s role as a culture-changer defensively in the Mavericks’ first championship season in franchise history.
Keen to have a major amount of salary-cap space for the summer of 2012 and the pursuit of players like Howard, Paul and Dallas-area local Deron Williams, Cuban decided the Mavericks couldn’t afford to match the offers Chandler was getting on the market without hampering the Mavericks ‘ future capability to get a younger cornerstone player to flank star forward Dirk Nowitzki.
But because Odom can be purchased of his contract next season for slightly below $3 million, and thanks to the trade exception spawned by Chandler’s move to the Knicks, Dallas had the ability to snag the versatile left-hander from the Lakers without affecting Cuban’s plan to have major cap space in the summertime of 2012. As a bonus, L.A.’s call to make Howard its focus and pull out of the three-team talks means that the rest of the Western Meeting must no longer fear the chance of Howard and Paul winding up on the same Lakers team with Kobe Bryant.
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