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Wednesday , Mar , 09 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Dwight Howard: I want to stay in Orlando

“I love Orlando. The city has been very good to me and I would love to finish my career here. I want to win a championship and I want to win it in Orlando,” Howard said on the Dan Patrick Show Monday morning. “That’s all I’ve been thinking about.”

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: You’ve heard rumors Dwight Howard will leave the Orlando Magic as a free agent and sign with the Los Angeles Lakers in 2012.

Well, not so fast. According to the massive five-man, this isn’t so.

Howard recently told scribes he wants to finish his career in Orlando, and bring an NBA Title to Disney World. There are a few reasons for these comments:

  • Clearly, the Magic aren’t trading Howard, so he and the team want to avoid the publicity that plagued Chris Bosh and the Toronto Raptors, LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers, and, most recently, Carmelo Anthony and the Denver Nuggets.
  • He may choose to stay in Orlando. Howard is comfortable, the Magic are competitive, and Executive Otis Smith is committed to providing him with a top flight supporting cast.
  • Of course, he may have to stay in Orlando. The league’s Collective Bargaining Agreement expires July 1st, and owners may prevent superstars from building super squads by allowing teams to apply a ‘franchise’ tag to top players.Translation: Orlando could keep Howard. It may not matter whether he wants to stay or go.

So Howard has to keep all options open. And that’s exactly what he’s doing with his comments.

--Oly Sandor
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Saturday , Mar , 05 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Jeff Van Gundy: ‘Tracy McGrady should be a Hall of Fame player’



“Tracy McGrady was 1,000 hours of practice,” Van Gundy said to laughter from the audience. “He should be a Hall of Fame player. His talent was other-worldly. He was given a great leg up in the race against other players. He’s as close as I’ve ever seen to someone with a perfect body and a good mind.”

 
HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: For Tracy McGrady, it was never about winning or about being the best he could for his team.

Not in Toronto. Not in Orlando. Not in Houston. Not in New York. And not in Detroit, either.

For McGrady, it has always been about one thing: getting his. Minutes, touches, and shots have always taken precedence over wins and losses.

Sadly, McGrady still could have salvaged something from his career this summer. He could have signed on as a reserve with a contender. He could have agreed to play a role; blocking shots, facilitating, and using his length on defense like he did with the Toronto Raptors. 

Instead, he’s part of the problem with the Detroit Pistons. No matter how much you hate your boss, there’s never an excuse for not appearing at practice like McGrady did last week.

Sadly, there was no punishment. After all, the Pistons are in flux; Coach John Kuester is a lame duck; Executive Joe Dumars is on shaky ground; and the roster has underachieved.

Change won’t occur until the team is sold, so McGrady got off scotch free for his no-show. Things could be different in a few months, though.

In July, McGrady becomes an unrestricted free agent. Teams will see his numbers:  9 points and 4 assists. Teams will remember his one-day boycott. And they`ll take a pass.

His career will be over with a whimper. Bottom line: the great McGrady will go down as a ‘should have’.

--Oly Sandor.


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Wednesday , Feb , 23 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Warriors acquire Troy Murphy, Buyout coming?

The Warriors and Nets are close to finalizing a multi-player trade, according to sources. Golden State will send Dan Gadzuric and Brandan Wright to New Jersey for Troy Murphy and a 2012 second round pick.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Wait a second. Wasn’t Troy Murphy supposed to go to the Denver Nuggets as part of the Carmelo Anthony trade?

That’s right. Anthony declined the New Jersey Nets’ overtures and is now a New York Knick.

Anyway, the Nets wasted little time sending Murphy back to his first NBA team, the Golden State Warriors, for Dan Gadzuric and Brandan Wright.

Murphy isn’t returning home for a reunion or coming full circle, though.

In a day or so, the Warriors will buyout whatever is left on his expiring contract and allow him to hit the free agent market.

Murphy will then have his choice of contenders, and the Boston Celtics, Dallas Mavericks, Miami Heat, and Orlando Magic are all expected to show interest.

On paper, the Magic makes the most sense. Murphy can help center Dwight Howard on the glass, while stretching defenses with his three-point range –like Rashard Lewis before he got moved to the Washington Wizards.

One issue will be Murphy’s conditioning. He has only played in 18 games due to injury and a bizarre banishing by Coach Avery Johnson.

After months of frustration, the left-handed veteran will hit the court. For the first time in his nine year career, he could see playoff action, too.

However, what exactly Murphy can contribute is unknown.

--Oly Sandor.


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Saturday , Feb , 19 , 2011 Oly Sandor

Rumor: Howard to join Bryant and Lakers in 2012?

During media availability on Friday of All-Star Weekend, Dwight Howard was asked about the possibility of becoming a member of the Lakers when he becomes a free agent in the summer of 2012. "As of right now, I’m in Orlando and that’s the only thing on my mind, is getting our team back to the Finals,” responded Howard.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: At some point during All-Star weekend in Los Angeles, Dwight Howard will surely say to close confidants: “man, I could get used to this.”

The ‘this’, of course, is the massive market of Los Angeles. And perhaps, these few days convinces Howard to opt-out of his contract in 2012, and sign with the Lakers as a free agent.

And ‘this’, of course, is a problem for Howard’s current team, the Orlando Magic. The massive five-man is their franchise face, resident superstar, and premier player.

If he leaves, the Magic’s championship aspirations go with him. Otis Smith and Stan Van Gundy will have a lottery team playing in an empty new arena.

So, how do the executive and coach of the Magic convince Howard to sign a long-term extension?

First, they find him a real co-star. Not Jason Richardson. Not Gilbert Arenas. Not Hedo Turkoglu. This trio combined can’t hold Kobe Bryant, even if The Black Mamba would be in his mid 30s by 2012.

Smith and Van Gundy must remind Howard big markets are no longer the be-all, end-all with respect to marketing. The internet means players can be global superstars in Orlando, as well as Los Angeles.

Finally, they should appeal to his loyalty. The Magic are, and will continue to be Howard’s team, while the Lakers belong to Bryant, a five-time champion.

Smith and Van Gundy would be wise to continue communicating with Howard. Or come 2012, he’ll land in Los Angeles. Except this time it won’t be for a weekend.

--Oly Sandor.
 
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Friday , Feb , 18 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Video: JJ Redick gets his ankles broken by … Kirk Hinrich?


HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call
: What’s worse? To get your ankles broken by an aging veteran or to have your teammates taunt you for it?

Welcome to J.J. Redick’s world. The former Duke star was mocked by his Orlando Magic brethren for getting crossed over by the Washington Wizards’ Kirk Hinrich.

While Hinrich isn’t exactly And1 material, Redick could still do without Jameer Nelson recreating the play –even if the Magic were up by 25 in the third quarter. 


--Oly Sandor.

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Is Vince Carter Done?
Saturday , Feb , 05 , 2011 Paul Eide

Is Vince Carter Done?

With just about two weeks left before the NBA All Star Game the highlights of Vince Carter dominating the 2000 Slam Dunk contest are beginning to circulate in ever increasing frequency. Carter literally introduced the world to dunks most people had never seen before and did it with a fire and passion that has never been matched by any subsequent dunk contest contestant.
 

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Thursday , Feb , 03 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

In or Out? What’s Artest’s future with the Lakers?

"I think Ron enjoys being in L.A," Phil Jackson said. "I think he likes the Lakers. I think he likes the action. I think he likes the attention we get as a basketball club. I think that feeds into who he is as a person." Artest was admant that he doesn't want to be traded. "I feel good every day," Artest said. "We've got a chance to win multiple championships here...trying to work towards another banner."

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: He’s out. No. He’s in.

In less than 24 hours there have been conflicting reports on Ron Artest’s future with the two-time defending champion Los Angeles Lakers.

Yesterday, Marc Stein reported that Artest had requested a trade. The ESPN reporter quoted an unnamed source who mentioned that the three-man was tired of being blamed for the team’s struggles and wanted a greater role in the offense.

Today, the Lakers were in damage control mode, with player and team both denying the report.

Forget the rumors. All is not well with the purple-and-gold.

Part of this is boredom. The Lakers have had two especially long seasons, playing from October to the end of June. They’ve also been in some epic game sevens, which probably makes it tough to play the Memphis Grizzlies in January.

Part of this is fear. Everybody else is better –much better. The Miami Heat have the Three Kings in Chris Bosh, LeBron James, and Dwyane Wade; the Boston Celtics are deeper, especially down-low; the San Antonio Spurs’ Big Four dominate both ends of the floor. 

The Atlanta Hawks, Chicago Bulls, Dallas Mavericks, Orlando Magic, and Oklahoma City Thunder also have designs on winning a championship.

So ‘three-peating’ won’t be easy. Artest and the Lakers have to focus on the challenge.

--Oly Sandor.


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Saturday , Jan , 22 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Otis Smith on Boston Celtics: ‘They act tough’

After Monday's game between the two teams, Magic general manager Otis Smith questioned the toughness of the Celtics."They act tough," Smith said. "They're not really tough. They act tough."

 
HoopsVibe`s Very Quick Call: It’s time for Otis Smith and Stan Van Gundy to shut up.

All year, the Orlando Magic’s executive and coach have waged a war of words through the media with members of the Miami Heat and Los Angeles Lakers. Now they’re declaring jihad against the Boston Celtics. 

Smith and Van Gundy have to realize something: they’re providing bulletin board material for the Celtics. Kevin Garnett and his green posse will take exception to these comments and bring it against the Magic.

Gilbert Arenas, Dwight Howard, Jameer Nelson, Jason Richardson, and Hedo Turkoglu will bear the brunt of Garnett’s rage, while Smith sits comfortably in his fifteen hundred dollar suit in the executive suite.

In short, Smith and Van Gundy aren’t playing. Someone else has to take responsibility for their words.

Perhaps they should simply do their jobs and model professionalism for the employees they’re supposed to lead.  

--Oly Sandor.


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Sunday , Jan , 16 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Video: lights go out on Minnesota-Orlando game

HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: The Minnesota Timberwolves are bad, but there’s no need to turn out the lights.

Yesterday, the Minnesota-Orlando game went to black when the lights went out at the Target Center. Apparently, it was a technical glitch and not a disgruntled Wolves fan expressing their dismay.

Watch the clip and get at us with thoughts in the comment box below.

--Oly Sandor.

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Saturday , Jan , 15 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Dwight Howard and Kobe Bryant in LA?

All of Orlando has seen this haunting movie before. The Magic know what's out there, too. They're aware of the rumbles in circulation that Howard secretly longs to make the same cross-country trek to Los Angeles that Shaquille O`Neal mapped out in 1996, with one source close to the situation insisting that Howard and Lakers star Kobe Bryant are far closer pals than people realize.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: We’ve seen this before. Franchise post leaves the Orlando Magic, signs with the Los Angeles Lakers, and wins multiple championships next to Kobe Bryant.

Technically, Dwight Howard is a ways away from pulling a Shaq-Fu and leaving the Magic as a free agent –the big man can exercise an option on his contract in July of 2012.

However, the rumors and rumblings were loud enough for the Magic to initiate two blockbuster trades last month, acquiring Gilbert Arenas, Jason Richardson, and Hedo Turkoglu.

Will the combo guard formerly known as The Hibachi, J-Rich, and Turkoglu appease Howard?

After all, Howard loves the spotlight. He loves flashing his pearly white teeth for the cameras and busting jokes for reporters. Unfortunately, Orlando is small; so small he can’t maximize endorsements and get another legit superstar to join him.

Without a premier wing-man, Howard has little shot at a championship in Orlando. He needs help; really good help to beat the Boston Celtics and Miami Heat in a seven-game, do-or-die series.

Howard knows this, so leaving Orlando for a major market like New York or Los Angeles remains a possibility. Of course, the Knicks have Amar`e Stoudemire, while the Lakers have Kobe Bryant.

For personal and professional reasons, Howard would prefer Los Angeles. He and Bryant are friends, and would form a deadly inside-outside combination. A Howard-Stoudemire pairing sounds enticing, but could be awkward.  

In the coming months, there will be more talk of Howard joining Bryant in Los Angeles. Orlando can quiet the talk and re-sign their superstar by winning a championship.

--Oly Sandor.

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Monday , Jan , 03 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Kobe Bryant on recent techincal fouls: ‘Expletive it’

On an unrelated note, Bryant expressed not a hint of concern for picking up five technical fouls in last six games: [Expletive] it. Don't care. I can afford it.".

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Forget Kobe Bryant’s choice of words. He has bigger issues than a fine from league head office.

Consider the recent plight of his Los Angeles Lakers: they’ve lost four of their past six games; they haven’t played well for weeks; they, according to Bryant, are ‘skipping steps’; and last night they were booed at home for a terrible effort in a loss to the average Memphis Grizzlies.

Their problems are greater than being bored with the regular season. And their problems are also greater than arrogantly thinking they can hit a switch for the playoffs.

This year, the Lakers have serious competition. In the Western Conference, there’s the San Antonio Spurs and, provided they get past their recent string of injuries, the Dallas Mavericks. Neither team will concede an inch in a best of seven playoff series.

If the Lakers advance to the NBA Finals, they could face the Boston Celtics or Miami Heat, two superb defensive teams. And the Orlando Magic, despite two mid-season trades, is still dangerous.

So the competition is better, while, it appears, the purple-and-gold is worse.

Don’t get it twisted: the Lakers are extremely talented. But something is missing from the two-time defending champions. Perhaps the hunger is gone. Perhaps the motivation is gone.
 
Or perhaps everything will be fine next June, and Bryant and his teammates will be celebrating a three-peat. Right now, this scenario seems unlikely.

--Oly Sandor.


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Friday , Dec , 31 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Jordan talked to Ewing about Bobcats coaching job?

Patrick Ewing has confirmed that he had conversations with Michael Jordan about replacing Larry Brown as Charlotte's head coach. He did not say if he was offered the job.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: It sounds good. A pair of former rivals joining forces to turnaround a morbid franchise.

Would it have worked? We’ll never know.

Patrick Ewing, an assistant coach for the Orlando Magic and retired Hall of Fame pivot for the New York Knick, has told reporters he talked with Michael Jordan about the head coaching job with the Charlotte Bobcats.

Jordan, a Hall of Fame two-guard with the Chicago Bulls who often beat Ewing’s Knicks in the playoffs, now owns the Bobcats and fired Coach Larry Brown last week. He then hired Paul Silas to replace Brown on the sideline.

There are two points on Ewing’s comments. First, he deserves a head coaching job. This, however, wasn’t a fit.

Ewing needs a young team he can teach, groom, and mentor -like Scott Brooks and the Oklahoma City Thunder. He needs a team where his players will learn from him and vice-versa.

Gerald Wallace aside, the Bobcats are a mess. They’re compromised of mediocre, overpaid veterans and D.J. Augustine, who may develop into a decent table-setter.

If Brown, the teacher of all teachers, couldn’t reach them then Ewing would’ve struggled on the sideline, too.

Second, there are just 30 head coaching jobs in the NBA. Getting one isn’t easy, and potential candidates –like Ewing- have to keep their names in the press.

This may be a case of Ewing seeking publicity. Remember, Stan Van Gundy, the head coach for the Magic, has publicly criticized other organizations for not interviewing or even considering Ewing.

So Jordan and Ewing won’t be joining forces in Charlotte. It wasn’t meant to be. And it’s probably best for all involved.

After all, a Knick and Bull couldn’t possibly become allies, right?

--Oly Sandor.

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Monday , Dec , 27 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Will Jason Williams retire or ask Orlando for release?

Sources near Magic say guard Jason Williams unhappy with situation, trying to be patient with Otis Smith, wants a trade or his release.

Reserve PG Jason Williams was on the Magic's active roster Saturday, but he didn't dress because he continues to be bothered by problems with his left foot. Williams, 35, said doctors have told him that he suffers from arthritis in the foot, and Williams is concerned because the discomfort hasn't subsided over the last month and a half.

HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Is it the end for White Chocolate? Or is it a new beginning?

There are differing reports on the future of Orlando Magic point guard Jason Williams. One report has him asking for his release because he’s behind Jameer Nelson, Gilbert Arenas, and Chris Duhon. The other has him retiring due to arthitis in his foot.

Either way, his time with the Magic is likely ending. If healthy and available, a contender will show interest.

Williams is more than behind the back dimes and circus moves. He once had the league’s top assist-to-turnover ratio, started for the 2006 world champion Miami Heat, and had veteran sideline boss Hubie Brown dub him the smartest player he ever coached.

Hopefully, he gets meaningful minutes somewhere. Williams, a fan favourite, deserves nothing less.

--Oly Sandor.

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Friday , Dec , 24 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Video: Dwight Howard bullies Chris Quinn and Spurs

HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Dwight Howard made sure yesterday wasn’t a good day for Chris Quinn.

Howard, while stumbling out of bounds, fired the ball of Quinn’s dome to ensure his Orlando Magic retained possession. Then Howard caught, not just blocked, Quinn’s shot in mid-air, mind you.

Finally, Howard had 29 points and 14 rebounds in a 123-102 Magic win over Quinn’s Spurs. Watch both clips and get at us with thoughts on Howard’s treatment of Quinn in the comment box below.

(That has to hurt.)

(No need for a block. Howard prefers to catch Quinn`s shot in mid air.)

--Oly Sandor.
 

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Friday , Dec , 24 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Jason Richardson: ‘The trade didn’t catch me off guard’

"The trade didn't catch me off guard at all. I knew when they wouldn't talk about an extension that I wasn't going to be there the whole season,'' Richardson said before the Magic played the San Antonio Spurs. "They wouldn't even sit down and talk to us. I kind of figured when they were dodging calls from my agent, something was going to happen.''

Richardson, who is making $14 million this season, was pushing hard for the extension in Phoenix, preferring to avoid free agency this summer. He was riding a strong playoff performance last spring and a fast start this season, knowing his stock would never be higher.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Such is life with the Phoenix Suns and Robert Sarver.

Sarver is the thrifty owner of the Suns. And he’s become even more of an Uncle Scrooge since his banking and real estate holding were decimated by the economic meltdown.

Most of the Suns’ movable big tickets –like Richardson’s expiring $14 million contract – get moved.

Richardson, despite being the team’s leading scorer, wasn’t getting re-signed. Especially since the trade with Orlando allowed the club to escape the final three years and $35 million remaining on Hedo Turkoglu’s pact. 

Credit the Suns, who were dealing from a position of weakness, for getting back value from Orlando. For instance, Marcin Gortat and Mickael Pietrus are talented two-way players.

Gortat and second-year post Robin Lopez will form a nice one-two punch in the middle, while Pietrus and veteran Grant Hill give the Suns a pair of shutdown swings.

It’s no surprise Richardson was traded. It’s a surprise the Suns got so much for him.

--Oly Sandor.

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Monday , Dec , 20 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Magic to trade Redick or Richardson for a center?

"We'll still find ways to get better in some spots," Magic President of Basketball Operations Otis Smith said. "Losing the backup center is big. So, you need a little size for about probably five teams. That's really what it comes down to, so we'll probably address that over the next month or so."

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: The wheeling-and-dealing will continue.

On Saturday, the Orlando Magic overhauled their roster in separate trades with the Phoenix Suns and Washington Wizards.

The Magic dealt Vince Carter, Marcin Gortat, and Mickael Pietrus to the Suns for Earl Clark, Jason Richardson, and Hedo Turkoglu. Then they sent Rashard Lewis to the Wizards for Gilbert Arenas.

The Magic improved on the wing, but – after dealing Gortat – need a five-man to relieve superstar Dwight Howard.

Howard, despite winning The Defensive Player of the Year award, is prone to foul trouble. Things were so bad last year teammates nicknamed him ‘Foul On You’.

The Magic need a reserve center to bail Howard out when he's overzealous in the paint. A back-up for Howard will also help them compete with bigger contenders like the Boston Celtics, Dallas Mavericks, and Los Angeles Lakers.

Fortunately, the Magic have spare assets. Acquiring Arenas, Richardson, and Turkoglu has made wings J.J. Redick and ‘Q’ Richardson expendable.

A market exists for Redick, even though he’s having an off year and is on the books for an additional two seasons at a combined $12 million.

Richardson can defend and hit the three. Best of all, the veteran is signed through 2014 at a reasonable $2.5 million per annum.

Last weekend was just the beginning for the Magic. More moves are coming. If they’re serious about a championship, they’ll trade a wing for a post.

--Oly Sandor.

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Monday , Dec , 20 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Video: Gilbert Arenas talks ‘new beginning’ with Orlando Magic

HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: He smiled. He laughed. He provided incite. Best of all, he looked and sounded like the old Gilbert Arenas.

The combo guard formerly known as Agent Zero seemed happy to have a ‘new beginning’ with the Orlando Magic. Click the video clip and get at us with thoughts on Arenas’ first comments as member of the Magic.  

--Oly Sandor.

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Sunday , Dec , 19 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Will Howard leave Magic to partner with Paul, Rose or Williams?

After the anticipated lockout ends, Howard will be entering the final year of his contract followed by an early-termination option for 2012-13.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: What happens in Orlando if Gilbert Arenas, Jason Richardson, and Hedo Turkoglu fail to appease Dwight Howard?

Expect Howard to become a free agent following the 2012 season by exercising a player’s option. He’ll then look to partner with fellow free agent superstars like Chris Paul, Derrick Rose, and Deron Williams.

Gatorade Slam Dunk Contests, pearly white smiles, and jokes aside, Howard wants to win. He’s envious of the Three Kings in Miami and Big Four in Boston.

If the Magic can’t provide the right supporting cast, Howard will provide it for himself -even if that means leaving.

--Oly Sandor.

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Saturday , Dec , 18 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Report: Magic trade Carter to Suns for Turkoglu and J-Rich

The Orlando Magic, already in serious trade talks with the Washington Wizards about acquiring Gilbert Arenas, have agreed to a deal in principle with the Phoenix Suns, according to league sources.

The trade returns former Magic star Hedo Turkoglu, along with Jason Richardson and Earl Clark, to Orlando in exchange for Vince Carter, Marcin Gortat, Mickael Pietrus, a 2011 first-round pick and cash considerations.
 
 
HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Like Wu-Tang Clan said, ‘cash rules everything around me’.

No doubt about it, cash is a major part of the reported swap between the Phoenix Suns and Orlando Magic. The Suns don’t have any cash. While the Magic do.

Phoenix owner Robert Sarver lacks resources. His banking and real estate holdings were hard hit by the economic recession. He wants to keep his beloved Suns, but only if he can run the club on the cheap.

Vince Carter has only one year guaranteed on his $17 million per annum contract, which will provide the thrifty Suns with financial flexibility. Mickael Pietrus is a useful swing; Marcin Gortat offers muscle down-low.

Best of all, the Suns are out from under the remaining four years and $40 million of Hedo Turkuglo’s pact.

The Magic, on the other hand, have resources. After dropping five of six games, the club is prepared to shake up its roster. Money doesn’t matter.

The Magic will welcome back Turkoglu and assume his big ticket, especially if they do the expected and send forward Rashard Lewis to the Washington Wizards for Gilbert Arenas.

Jason Richardson’s skill and expiring $14 million contract will also be a fit in Disney World. 

Look for these sorts of trades to continue in the polarized NBA. The haves like Orlando will spend. The have-nots like Phoenix will cut salary.

--Oly Sandor.


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Saturday , Dec , 18 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Dwight Howard behind Magic`s pursuit of Gil Arenas?

After the Wizards lost to the Los Angeles Lakers on Tuesday, Arenas privately told people that a deal could possibly be in the works with either Orlando or Charlotte. Word started to spread throughout Verizon Center that evening, but the talk initially was shut down by multiple league sources. The Magic realizes they have to make a move. They have to do something,`` said the source.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: The NBA is a superstar’s league and the rest of us are living in it.

For instance, Dwight Howard, the Orlando Magic’s MVP candidate, wants changes to the roster. The big post knows his team isn’t in the same class as the Boston Celtics or Miami Heat, so he’s pressing executive Otis Smith to make a trade.

Being a superstar’s league, Smith must appease. Currently, he’s scouring the trade market for something, anything to keep Howard happy.

And Gilbert Arenas’ name keeps popping up.

Yes, the guy with a rep’ for being more high maintenance than one of those housewives of Orange County. Yes, the brittle combo guard with one of the worst contracts in pro sports. Yes, the Washington Wizards want to part with their former superstar who has a history of injuries, hooliganism, and shenanigans.

Sure, Arenas can score. And sure, he has a relationship with Smith. But The Superstar Formerly Known As The Hibachi has never toned down his shot-first mentality for others.

In fact, Arenas has to be The Guy. He knows nothing else. It’s option one status or broke. Such a mentality and approach isn’t what Howard and the Magic need.

Smith needs to look for the best deal possible. With Arenas, he’d be making a deal for the sake of making a deal.

--Oly Sandor.

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