HoopsHype Goran Dragic rumors

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February 19, 2015 Updates

Chris Broussard: League execs say angered Suns owner Rob Sarver refusing to accommodate Dragic's trade request. Bluff or real? We'll know is less than 8 hrs Twitter @Chris_Broussard

For Dragic, the Suns are pursuing packages that include a young player with significant potential and a first-round draft pick or two first-round picks, league sources told Yahoo Sports. The Suns signed Goran's brother, Zoran, to a two-year contract last summer, largely as a way to make the Suns star more comfortable with re-signing with the organization. With Goran wanting out, the Suns are trying to attach Zoran to trade packages with him, league sources told Yahoo Sports. Yahoo! Sports

The Boston Celtics, Houston Rockets and Sacramento Kings have been initially aggressive in talks to obtain Dragic, who will be a free agent in July. Suns general manager Ryan McDonough seems determined to find a team willing to gamble on the ability to offer Dragic the most years and guaranteed money in July free agency, league sources said. Yahoo! Sports

Despite the fact that Dragic gave the Suns a list of teams with which he'd be willing to re-sign this summer (the Los Angeles Lakers and New York Knicks are known to be on this list), there is a separate camp of suitors that are hoping they could change his mind because of the all-important fifth year on a prospective contract that comes into play (the Houston Rockets and Bostons Celtics of the NBA world). The team that has Dragic at season's end can offer a five-year deal, while all other teams can only offer four. But according to a person with knowledge of his situation, the fifth year is not a factor for Dragic as he weighs his uncertain future. Dragic has been smart with his money, it seems, and the allure of the extra guaranteed year is not expected to have any sway on his free agency decision. The person spoke to USA TODAY Sports on the condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the situation. USA Today Sports

But contrary to reports, the Celtics were not actively involved in the pursuit of players to whom they were linked for two days. Ty Lawson, Enes Kanter and DeMarcus Cousins were replaced by Goran Dragic and Isaiah Thomas of the Phoenix Suns and Oklahoma City’s Reggie Jackson in the Celtics rumor mill, but sources on different sides of the issue confirmed there was nothing of substance to any of it. Leaving aside the question of fit, it’s apparent the C’s are not enamored of the uncertainty that would come with acquiring Dragic or Jackson. The former plans to be an unrestricted free agent this summer, and the latter will be restricted. Boston Herald

February 18, 2015 Updates

The Phoenix Suns are operating under the belief that guard Goran Dragic could be persuaded to accept a five-year contract elsewhere, thus are pursuing trades with asset-rich teams outside of his preferred list of destinations, league sources told Yahoo Sports. Ryan McDonough seems determined to find a team willing to gamble on the ability to offer Dragic the most years and guaranteed money in July free agency, league sources said. Like the Suns, any team that trades for him can offer Dragic, 28, a five-year, $100 million-plus contract extension. Yahoo! Sports

None of those teams have the type of asset stockpile to acquire Dragic straight up, and likely don't even have enough to participate in a three-way deal. The Heat likely will not be able to send a first-round pick until 2017; the Knicks won't be able to send a pick until 2018; and the Lakers won't be able to send their own pick until 2019 at the earliest (although they do have the Rockets' 2015 first-rounder to dangle). Thus, any trade with those "preferred" teams would net the Suns very little. What Duffy has been able to do is create a demand on the market for Dragic now, rather than waiting for free agency, with the intent to drive up the trade cost to acquire him, thus escalating the commitment to retain his services this summer. The message is clear: If you intend to trade for Dragic, be prepared to pay him. ESPN.com

Dragic's frustration with his role on the team -- "standing in the corner, it's not my game" -- had been building as he saw his playmaking role reduced with the offseason addition of Isaiah Thomas, giving the Suns yet another point guard to go along with he and Eric Bledsoe. And while the Dragic-Bledsoe tag team, when healthy last season, proved to be a success -- the Suns went 23-11 when the two started -- adding Thomas just crowded the backcourt. Arizona's Sports Page

"(I want) to be a point guard, like I was in the past, all my life," Dragic said. "To be a point guard, to run the team, to have the ball in my hands and try to make plays for others. That's who I am." Arizona's Sports Page

Without mentioning Goran Dragic by name, Knicks President Phil Jackson says the Knicks hope “to be in the conversation” for impending free agents like the Phoenix Suns point guard. “We want to be in the conversation,” Jackson, speaking generally, said Wednesday at the Knicks practice facility in Tarrytown, N.Y. “I don’t know how serious we can be about it but we’d like to be in the conversation so we’re interested.” The Knicks Blog

Speaking early this afternoon at US Airways Center, Dragic indicated the bond between himself and team that drafted him is irretrievably broken. "I don't trust them anymore," Dragic said following Wednesday's practice session. "It happens too many times. Two, three times. They give promises, OK. It's hard. But at the same time, I wish them all the best. They were great to me the past five years. I'm always going to have a good memory about Phoenix fans and the city. I just hit that point of my career that it's better for me and my family to move on." Arizona Republic

"I don't feel comfortable with my situation," he said, adding, "It's just different. Standing in the corner, it's not my game. I see that we're not going the right direction. That's why I take action and try to put myself in a better position." Arizona Republic

On Wednesday afternoon, Goran Dragic spoke for the first time since word came down that he wants out of Phoenix. The problem, he said, according to Paul Coro of Azcentral.com, is that as his role changed over the course of this season. Speaking of the Suns’ front office, he said, “I don’t trust them anymore.” All of this makes it very difficult for the Suns to make a move on Dragic, of course—and the team still does not want to pull the trigger on a deal that would send Dragic away, a source told Sporting News. Dragic has a player option that allows him to be a free agent this summer. Sporting News

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