Friday, July 3, 2009

Now What?

Hedo Turkoglu has rejected Portland's offer and will end negotiations with the team, according to Jason Quick. I only had two concerns with the courting of Turkoglu. The first being his age, 30. The Blazers figure to be serious NBA Title contenders in 2 years and what would a 32 year old Hedo have left in the tank? Second, when signing an above average player, you always worry if they are all about the money and will become lazy once that fat contract is secured. Hedo gave off that vibe a little bit by rejecting a lucrative contract extension to stay in a great situation in Orlando. I was always worried more about the length, rather than the dollar signs, but no need to worry as Hedo will not be playing in front of the Rose Garden. This completely changes everything. Instead of finding the right point guard to play with Hedo, now we start from scratch. With all the other premier free agents seemingly locked up in verbal agreements (ie: Gordon, Artest, Ariza), it would seem that Plan B does not involve a free agent. I don't think Andre Miller is a target as multiple sources have reported that KP turned down a sign and trade involving Outlaw and Blake. Also, the 2 best free agents still on the market, Paul Millsap and David Lee, would not fill a huge need and would not be happy with only 15 minutes of playing time a night. Portland will still have their 8-9 million in cap space to take part in a lopsided trade, but who is realistically available? A few options:
  • Kirk Hinrich
  • Financially, we could do a straight offer of Steve Blake for Hinrich, and save the Bulls approximately 5 million, but with the departure of Ben Gordon, is Kirk even on the market anymore? For the money he makes, he is not a huge upgrade over Blake, but he can still shoot the 3 well at a 41% clip and his defensive is drastically better than Steve's, which would keep Oden in the game longer.
  • Tayshaun Prince
  • Personally, I think he is the best fit of all veteran small forwards. He has won a ring before, can hit the mid-range jumper and 3, and his defense is still in the upper echelon of the NBA. My only worry in bringing him here is Joe Dumars, who is notorious for overvaluing his players, but with the signing of Charlie Villanueva, who can play small forward, and Detroit desperately needing a center, maybe a package based around Przybilla would be enticing? But trading our warrior, I don't think so.
  • Shane Battier
  • With Yao Ming out of the year, most likely, Ron Artest leaving for the Lakers, and never knowing the health of McGrady, would this wily veteran be on the market? The defense is there, no question about that. We all saw how clutch he an be with timely 3's as well, but what would be the cost? Houston could be in position for a big spending spree in the 2010 summer and trading Battier for cap space, would only give them more money to play with.
  • Devin Harris
  • Everyone's favorite pipe dream. With Harris being 27 and the Nets looking to contend in further years with Lopez as their cornerstone, would Harris be available? There were rumors on draft night of New Jersey wanting Ricky Rubio and were dangling Harris to try to move up far enough to obtain him. Would Jerryd Bayless and Rudy Fernandez be enough young talent and cost savings to persuade New Jersey? Your guess is as good as mines when it comes to what's going on inside the head of KP, but if history has shown us anything, it is that he is the master of contingency plans and probably has 3-4 backup plans ready to go. My final take on Hedo: True ballers are all about the W's, not the $'s and it will be very apparent if Hedo was all about the $ if he signs with Toronto.

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