Tuesday , Jul , 17 , 2007 Oly Sandor

Breaking Down Rumors: Did Mark Cuban Block The Golden State Warriors From Landing Kevin Garnett?

The Mercury News reports that something prevented the Wolves and Warriors from completing a Garnett trade on draft day … Did Mark Cuban, Dallas’ owner, prevent Golden State from landing The Big Ticket? … Click here for news and analysis on this story …

Tim Kawakami on the Warriors trying to acquire Kevin Garnett:

Mullin and Timberwolves executive Kevin McHale are secretive guys, but I’m pretty sure some word of this would’ve gotten out to other NBA execs, coaches, agents or players. I’ve checked: No such word.

It’s just the opposite: Those who should know say there’s no deal. Yet.

I’ve heard from several sources that Mullin and McHale were on the brink of making the deal on draft night but something happened to halt the process.

Now both sides need time to rethink the whole thing (does Minnesota want Andris Biedrins? Would Mullin include him? Could Boston get back into it? Chicago?).

Once the adrenaline of draft night vanished and Mullin accepted that he had to move Jason Richardson without knowing if he would end up with Garnett, the likely KG time frame transitioned to September, October or even February.

My Quick Take: I agree with Kawakami. The Minnesota Timberwolves almost traded Kevin Garnett to the Golden State Warriors on draft night. Here’s the question: who prevented this trade from happening?

Mark Cuban, perhaps?

Cuban, Dallas‘ owner, has expressed interest in acquiring Garnett. Cuban has also expressed interest in settling the score with former employee, Don Nelson. The two have been locked in a messy lawsuit because Cuban believes Nelson is still under contract with Dallas

Of course, Nelson is Golden State‘s coach. And his Warriors eliminated the Mavericks from last year’s playoffs. This point wasn’t lost on Cuban. Not for a second. He has a giant axe to grind with Nelson and the entire Golden State franchise.

Around draft day, Dallas suddenly became involved in the Garnett sweepstakes. And Cuban’s offer of Josh Howard and Devin Harris could have been enough to prevent or delay Wolves’ GM Kevin McHale from trading the superstar to Nelson’s Warriors.

McHale would have to think about and consider Dallas’ offer. This would have shifted momentum away from the Warriors’ offer and maybe even killed the deal.  What other explanation is there for Garnett not ending up in San Francisco?

There’s no way to know if Cuban intentionally tried to prevent Golden State from acquiring Garnett. His interest in the superstar may have been legitimate. But he certainly had the motive to disrupt Golden State’s plans.

And if Dallas lands the Big Ticket, Cuban gets the last laugh on Nelson and the Warriors.

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