Friday, August 25, 2006

Latest Maggette Rumors

So if you're a Clippers fan, waiting out the long summer months until the team goes to Moscow(Back in the Former U.S.S.R.), what is there to do other than watch Elton play in the Worlds, and discuss rumors about Corey Maggette?

ClipperTalk has been abuzz with a couple of rumors - one having Maggette go to Denver in a complicated 4 team trade that would allow the Warriors to acquire Al Harrington, while the Clippers would get Mike Dunleavy the younger.

The other trade rumor being discussed is Maggette to Denver for J.R. Smith.

As far as I can tell, there are at least three problems with these rumors:
1) They are based on nothing more than idle speculation from sports columnists (which is true of most rumors of course):
2 ) They are the same rumor, but they just got a little garbled;
3) The only truth to them is... that there is no truth to them.

Maybe I'm missing something, but as far as I can tell, the little Dunleavy rumor originated with an August 21 article from the San Francisco Chronicle that included this excerpt:
According to two league sources, the Warriors have revived discussions with three teams on a multiple-player swap, with the principal parts involving Mike Dunleavy Jr. going to the Clippers, Corey Maggette to Denver and Joe Smith to Atlanta, with the Warriors getting Harrington.

The J.R. Smith rumor started with an August 24 article from the Rocky Mountain News (the link is to RealGM, click through to the actual article), that included this excerpt:
Periodic reports suggest they have something bigger in mind - trading Smith, for
example, as part of a deal that nets Corey Maggette, a bona fide scorer. But, as
the Nuggets would say, that's just one of those scurrilous offseason media

As you can see, the article doesn't say 'Smith for Maggette'; it says they lose Smith and get Maggette in a bigger deal. Guess what? That's Joe Smith, and that's the deal the SF Chronicle discussed earlier in the week. Same deal. Nothing new here. Move along people.

OK, so it's only one rumor, it has nothing to do with J.R. Smith, it's dead since Harrington signed with Indy, and it was most likely only ever a figment Harrington's agent's imagination, trying to make Indy think there were other suitors for Al when there weren't.

Would the Clippers even consider either of these deals? Well ignoring the fact that J.R. Smith for Corey Maggette doesn't come close to working under cap rules, the short answer is 'No', they would not consider it. Dunleavy Sr. probably really likes his son's game, but do you really think he wants to coach his own son on an NBA roster? His own son, who just signed a 5 year extension that SERIOUSLY overpays him? How do you think it would go the first time Cassell got up in Junior's grill for not boxing out?

Funny thing is, although it is my suspicion that the Clippers never had anything to do with this proposed trade, a one-for-one, Maggette-for-Dunleavy Jr trade works fine under the cap. If the Clippers were actually willing to give up Maggette and get back DJ, they still could, if the Warriors are game - and why wouldn't they be? But it ain't happening, thank goodness.

Finally, one wonders how all of this talk is affecting Maggette's mindset. I mean, it's one thing to be offered up for Ron Artest - hell, you can tell the grandkids that you were almost traded for an all-pro (a certifiably insane all-pro, but you leave that part out of the story with the grandkids.) But Mike Dunleavy Jr? Yikes. Let's hope the Clippers management has done the right thing, and called Corey to tell him that it was all a dream.

As I've said before, the guy only lost his starting spot because of injury, and deserves every chance to win the job back. I actually LIKE Ross in the starting lineup (one guy out of five who is there to play D, not looking for his shot.) But why is Maggette necessarily the odd many out? Why not Mobley? At any rate, I think the minutes will be there for Corey, because I think he's exactly the player they need - an athletic wing. Does anyone else in Clipper red fit that description?

He was their leading scorer the last time he was healthy for a season. Their leading scorer - not their second leading scorer. Their leading scorer - better than Brand - two years in a row - people forget this.

Maggette for little Dunleavy. Puh-leeze.