NBA Rumors Chat With Steve Kyler 2/3/14

Basketball Insiders Publisher Steve Kyler will hold his weekly chat at 10:30am EST on Mondays. Drop in your questions regarding NBA trades, the NBA Draft, roster moves or questions about your team.

  1. Pablo

    Hi Steve! Are the Celtics active in the trade front? Doesn´t a trade between Phoenix and Boston (around Green and Okafor)make too much logic not to happen?

    • Steve Kyler

      Welcome in everyone. Hope the SuperBowl was good to you… Lots to get to, so lets get after it.

      I think your going to see a lot of teams trying to extract value from guys. As for one team being more active than another? Not in February, everyone is seeing whats out there. As for Green and Okafor — its nice if the goal is to dump salary for Boston, but does Phoenix view Jeff Green as an answer worth investing $18 plus million into after this season?

      I think given Ryan McDonough’s history with Jeff, he might be a little more comfortable, but I don’t think they want to swap Okafor for long-term salary unless it really fills a need. I think Jeff makes too much money for Phoenix to get serious. Equally I am not sold Danny Ainge wants to trade Jeff Green unless it really brings back value and an Okafor and a late first round pick isn’t value.

  2. Jonathan

    I’ve read several reports that Shawn Marion’s name is coming up more frequently in trade rumors. What sort of team would likely be interested? Would his value be more for his expiring contract or defensive versatility?

    • Steve Kyler

      His name comes up because he is an ending contract and Dallas has needs. I don;t think its because the Mavs are actively talking about him.

      As for teams. I have not heard anyone specifically linked to Marion. Most of whats out there is speculation that because he’s ending contract and a serviceable vet that he’s available. I do not believe he is, unless it really returns something that cements Dallas as a playoff contender.

  3. steppxxxz

    Im surprised more isnt written about what the Suns have done this year. We get JR Smith gossip instead on a lot of major publications. They just beat Indiana AT HOME. And man, how Dragic isnt an all star is utterly confusing. But one thing stands out and thats that they play like a team. More than anyone save the Spurs. Isnt hornacek due serious consideration as COY?

    • Steve Kyler

      The biggest voices in media are in New York… thats why you hear more about JR Smith than the Suns. Equally, bad stories always trumps good stories in the media world.

      As for All-stars… its about the number of roster spots. Who in the West are you booting out at the guard spot to make room for Goran?… I think he could be the front runner for Kobe’s spot as an injury replacement.

      I also agree with you on Jeff Hornacek. What he’s done is impressive, but so has what Terry Stotts has done in Portland.

  4. Deven

    Who cares about Super Bowl right? The NBA rocks!

    • Steve Kyler

      Sadly… I had Denver. I said on my radio show yesterday. My head said take Seattle because defensive teams have historically beaten offensive teams in the big game… knowing that… I still took Denver.

  5. Cait

    (Admitted Pacers bias) In your opinion, can defense really win championships if a team has an erratic, subpar offense? In the last decade, the only two teams to win a title with an offense ranking in the bottom third of the league were the 2003 Spurs and 2004 Pistons. If the Pacers can get past the Heat with their size, can their anemic offense be compensated for with their defense against the West?

    • Steve Kyler

      As much as we praise defense, especially in the post season the name of the game is still scoring baskets. I think having a tough defense means you can have more issues offensively, but you still have to score to win. The challenge for a team like the Pacers, is they will likely face a solid defensive team regardless and thats where the issues comes into play. Its not just they will slow you down, you are going to slow them down to… so in someways it cancels each other out.

      I think the Pacers are built for the post-season in ways we have not seen from them in a long time. I am not worried about their offense in the post season.

  6. Deven

    Random question: is Adam Silver married?

    • Steve Kyler

      I honestly have no idea… not something I ever think about or have asked about.

      There is no mention of it in any of his bio stuff. I would assume he is.

  7. Deven

    How does the Andrew Bynum signing affect the Indiana Pacers moving forward?

    • Steve Kyler

      He either buys in to what they are doing or they drop him as quickly as they added him.

      That is a tough locker room, so none of the stuff he did in Cleveland is going to be tolerated. I think hearing how the Pacers players responded says everything. If he is coming in to help them win, they love that. If there is something else Andrew is trying to achieve, they want nothing to do with him.

  8. Milehightim

    There are rumors of the lakers ping after Eric Bledsoe this offseason. Can they offer a poison pill contract like Houston gave Lin and Asik? Or do you think the Suns would match whatever offer? Would that be a good get for them?

    • Steve Kyler

      No… He is a rookie scale player. That kind of deal only applied to non-rookie scale players called “early-Bird” players. Phoenix can match anything offered to him without limitations. They could front load their deal like they have done with others, but I don’t think thats going to scare away Phoenix. The big issue is how much do you offer a kid with two meniscus surgeries? Thats where things get interesting.

  9. Chris

    What is going on with Tobias Harris? Does Vaughn really think Davis should be starting over him? Name one thing Big Baby does better than Harris. (excluding taking up space)

    • Steve Kyler

      I spend zero time thinking about what Jacque Vaughn is thinking. You’ll lose your mind trying to do that.

      Every week we have this same conversation. The Magic are not trying to win games. They are trying to put as much quality game film on tape for their guys as they can and there is a constant change from week to week. Its maddening, but thats what this season is about. Extended showcases.

      I think way too much is being put into who starts and doesn’t start. This is a throw away season. Embrace it.

  10. Mike

    What are the chances Lowry gets trade before the deadline and who do you think are the raptors potential trading partners at this time?

    • Steve Kyler

      I don’t think Toronto has a potential trading partner yet. I do think the Raptors have to see what they can get for Kyle at the deadline. I don’t think that means they have to trade him, but you have to look because the odds are very high that Kyle leaves as a free agent. You can’t let assets walk away with nothing in return and get better in this league. That is the harsh part of this business.

  11. Dionusis

    Assuming K.Irving is traded during the summer which teams have the assets to trade for him ???

    • Steve Kyler

      I do not assume that.

      I assume that the entire front office will be changed and someone that Kyrie can get behind is brought in before the Cavs explore dealing Irving. The only scenario is if he flat out asks for a trade and he has not done that.

  12. Mark S

    Phoenix gets Gasol, Lakers get Okafor and Pacer’s first round pick.
    Why wouldn’t Phoenix make this move? They get an experienced center for the playoff run and he would be the best center on the team. They may even be able to entice him to re-sign as well considering their roster.

    • Steve Kyler

      Why would the Lakers make this move? Equally. Can Phoenix do better than Gasol with that offer?

      I think everyone is assuming because its been talked about, its attractive. For it to work for the Lakers they need to move more than Gasol. Does Phoenix want the “more” part of that equation?

      If the Lakers are giving up Gasol they want more than just the 28th-30th pick. They want to be under the luxury tax, so a Gasol-Okafor deal does not achieve that, another player has to go too and that might be more than Phoenix is willing to do, knowing there are other options available to them.

  13. Chris G

    Do you think Luol Deng’s exposure to the dysfunction in Cleveland this season might help push him back to the Bulls in the offseason? As his production has slipped, Deng probably is aware how much the Bulls’ system helped him. Or will it simply be the highest bidder wins?

    • Steve Kyler

      No. The Bulls effectively burned that bridge in how they handled Luol’s exit. I think seeing dysfunction means Luol seeks out non-dysfunction a lot more than he might have before landing in Cleveland. Money will matter, because money says a lot about who you are, how committed a team is to you and what role they see you playing.

      Guys making $5 million are bench guys… where guys making $10 million tend to start. Guys making $5 million get traded a lot more frequently than guys making $10 million.

      Money isn’t just cash in the bank, it establishes a status level for a player. Its why some guys will sit out a season before accepting a minimum level deal.

      Why doesn’t a guy take less to win, because after he wins he gets traded to Cleveland.

  14. Gustavo A Thomas

    To me the #1 nba tanking team is Orlando Magic, they have no so bad group of players but they play to lose everyday, somebody need to do something about that. What you think.

    • Steve Kyler

      The Magic are constructed to play hard for about 40 minutes and for the most part they do. This idea that anyone on the team is trying to lose games is completely wrong. Every guy in that locker room wants to win. They just don’t have the ability to win, when the top priority it to try on as many different looks as you can to get all of those guys minutes.

      Not everyone is playing for the same things. Embrace it.

  15. BeeMagic

    Hi Steve,
    Victor O. looks like a SG to me, not a natural assist man. With the Magic as the look now wouldn’t a Dante Exum pick be in the Magic’s best interest if he were available or would they take a chance on Emblid, more raw tho awesome upside potential even tho Vucevic looks solid?

    • Steve Kyler

      I have been saying for months that Dante Exum is my guy if I am the Magic.

      I think they have to look at Joel Embiid, simply because he could be a Roy Hibbert type dominate center in three years. Nik Vuvecic will never be a dominate center. He is a good player, but a change the game big man is rare, so Orlando has to look at that, especially because its time to give Nik $10-$12 million a year.

  16. Tito

    Hi Steve!! Did you watch Broncos-Seattle last night?? Like it?

    If you could bring some of the guys back, who would you chooose? Coach Moreau anyone?

    • Steve Kyler

      Not sure I get the question… Mike Moreau’s life changed and that made writing for us impossible with his schedule. The same with Anthony Macri. He is the CEO of the AESN Basketball League in Southeast Asia – not sure he’s got the time to pen articles 🙂

      All of our guys came over with the change. We are talking with a few new people, but we’re fairly set. Getting Dr. Travis Heath back and getting Jessica Camerato back were the two pieces I personally had missed the most, but both are part of Basketball Insiders.

      As for last nights game… thrilled for Seattle and Coach Carroll… sucked for Denver to go out like that. I wanted a more contested game.

  17. Frank

    Hi Steve,
    1) What are the odds LOWRY gets moved out of TDOT? If so, got a guess where to?
    2)Got a guess whether BLEDSOE comes back this season? If so, before the trade deadline?
    3)Does BYNUM really get burn in INDY? Projection ROS?

    • Steve Kyler

      — sort of covered Lowry. I think Toronto has to look. You just have to.

      — I am not putting a lot of hope in Bledsoe coming back, but its possible.

      — I think Bynum will get the chance to play, but he has to earn his minutes. The Pacers did not give him $1 million to hold a towel for Roy Hibbert.

  18. Lou

    If u were the milwaukee Bucks GM wouldn’t u draft for a now player/scorer like paker or wiggins rather a project like embiid?

    • Steve Kyler

      If I am the GM… I am not making draft decision in February. I am thoroughly working out all of the top 6 or 7 guys. I am putting a tremendous amount of work in around the combine to make sure that I get the right guy for the long term. Part of that is going to be determining whether the top pick has enough trade value to get me something proven too.

      I know you want me to pick a player, but thats not how the process works.

  19. mike

    Who on the trade market right now would help the Bobcats the most? Cant help but think Pau would make an huge impact.

    • Steve Kyler

      Sure… Pau Gasol is an all-world player. I think he’d help almost any team he was one. He is a star in this league.

      As for Charlotte specifically. I think they need another impact player, but I am also not sure they have the assets to get one with Ben Gordon being the center piece of an offer.

  20. Jamal from Milwaukee

    Morning Steve,

    Hearing anything new on the trade front regarding my Milwaukee Bucks?

    • Steve Kyler

      They are active. But nothing thats close to happening. I think they’ll be a player on February 20th simply because they have ending contracts and veterans that could help other teams.

  21. La in La

    Hey Kyler, 2 questions:

    1) unless they know that there is zero chance of Pau staying, what reason is there for the Suns to NOT trade one of their mid first round picks and Okafar (ik I misspelled) for Pau? Not saying they should be in a rush to do it but I see it as a high reward very low risk trade for a team with 4 (potential) firsts.

    2) are the Pistons really so stubborn about their line-up that thy consider Monroe highly unreadable, or are they smartly holding onto hope they can find a taker for Smith and keep Monroe?

    • Steve Kyler

      The primary reason not to make a trade for Gasol… what else could they get closer to the deadline?

      Equally, the Lakers are not going to do a Gasol-for-Okafor trade, you are going to have to take someone else like Chris Kaman, Jordan Hill or Steve Blake in order for the Lakers to get under the tax line. So are the Lakers willing to give up two assets for whats going to amount to a lake first round pick? I don’t think LA does that deal. I think they can do better for Gasol than that.

      Yes, the Pistons are that stubborn. They feel like Greg Monroe is an asset that fits long term. As for Josh Smith, not sure anyone takes that contract.

  22. phil

    Hi steve, big spurs fan here. With the spurs having a ton of injuries to their wings they sign brown to a 10 day contract and his a combo guard. Looking at the pool of players available, I always wondered why the spurs wouldnt take a punt on lamar odom. I know they generally err on the side of caution with players with known baggage but the payoff could be huge. Just think of all the lineups the spurs can throw out there with odom being able to play 3 positions. Your thoughts?

    • Steve Kyler

      Lamar does not fit the Spurs locker room culture. There is a reason everyone has walked away from Lamar. The drug stuff, the personal issues and more importantly the circus that he’ll attract is unappealing to teams playing for something. The Spurs are adverse to drama. So you can cross anyone with drama around them off the list.

  23. Jason

    Are you hearing anything in regards to the Sixers trade front with 3 moveable assets in Young, Hawes and Turner?

    • Steve Kyler

      Like most teams, they are out there, but they do not feel like they have to make a mid-season trade. Its about what will they get back and we’re not to the point where teams are offering anything yet.

  24. Steve

    Hey Steve, I really like what you guys have done with the new website! What are you hearing out of Milwaukee? Do you anticipate them being active at the trade deadline?

    • Steve Kyler

      Thanks on the site… still chipping away at little issues.

      I sort of covered the Bucks. I do think they’ll be active, but I do not get the sense they have anything they’d do on the table yet.

  25. zounds

    How about Gasol for Okafur, then send O to Jazz for Biedrins. With the injury the Jazz only pay a percentage so can save money, and LA gets under the luxury tax.

    • Steve Kyler

      Again… I think to get the Lakers to do a deal you are going to have to send them more than tax relief. They want assets. So who tosses in another pick or a couple of second round picks or a player on a rookie scale deal?

      Okafor, Andris Biedrins offer nothing to the Lakers. The Pacers’ draft pick is not going to yield a player that matters, just takes up a guaranteed roster spot next season.

      The deal that gets done for Gasol has to bring back value to the Lakers, not just cap relief.

      Guys… I am out of time. Thanks for all the questions. Make sure you are following me on Twitter (@stevekylerNBA). See you all next week.