HoopsHype JJ Hickson rumors


February 12, 2013 Updates

A source said to keep an eye on forward J.J. Hickson, whose Bird Rights allow teams to go over the salary cap to re-sign him, as possible trade bait. Yahoo! Sports

February 7, 2013 Updates

Portland’s energetic J.J. Hickson has played himself into a great position even while playing out of position. At 6-foot-9, Hickson is the Blazers’ undersized center who’s putting up double-doubles at a higher rate than even his All-Star teammate LaMarcus Aldridge. Hickson’s 14 points and 10 rebounds in Wednesday’s loss at Dallas was his 27th double-double, tied for third-most in the league. It’s the kind of production that will put Hickson, 24, atop many teams’ offseason shopping lists when he becomes an unrestricted free agent in July. “I’d be lying if I wasn’t looking forward to it, but that’s something I’ll get more excited about when that period hits,” Hickson said. “It’s something that me and my agent will talk about, but right now I’m just worried about playing basketball and trying to make these playoffs.” NBA.com

January 17, 2013 Updates

Hickson has expressed several times how happy he is with the Blazers and there is a belief that Portland will do a new deal with Hickson this summer. The problem is Hickson may have played himself into a market value the Blazers won’t match. There are several teams with interest in trading for Hickson. However, if he is traded he loses his Bird rights. The only way that makes sense for Hickson to approve is if the trading team is going to have cap space to sign him without Bird rights and expresses a willingness to do it. HoopsWorld

“Yeah, I'll be lying if I said it wasn't an exciting time in my life,” Hickson told CSNNW.com. “It's also exciting to play on this team that everybody counted us out at the start. We're making a lot of noise in the Western Conference. I'm trying to make this playoff run if I'm here after the trade deadline. Obviously, I'll be happy either way because I can veto any trade.” CSNNW.com

January 13, 2013 Updates

Consider that Hickson, who makes $4 million annually, is averaging a double double (12.2 points, 11 rebounds) this season. He's well regarded by fans. He's appreciated by teammates. Also, he's an unrestricted free agent by the end of the season, and anyone who has ever spent any time around owner Paul Allen knows that he'll be irked if Olshey loses the 24-year-old Hickson at the end of the season without getting something for him. Oregonian

That's not the tricky part. Because even as the Blazers love Hickson, there are a number of league executives who don't believe he has trade-deadline value beyond, maybe, a couple of future second-round draft picks. Sacramento waived him last season. Cleveland struggled to trade him in 2011, getting Omri Casspi and a conditional pick for him. Even after posting encouraging numbers at the end of last season, there wasn't much interest in Hickson last summer beyond Portland, which signed him to that modest one-year deal. Oregonian

January 3, 2013 Updates

Hickson is an early candidate for Comeback Player of the Year after getting released by the Sacramento Kings last March. Since then he’s gone from an athletic, but undisciplined former prospect to a remarkably efficient offensive weapon. And since he’s still just 24, he’ll undoubtedly have offers over the summer. “I don’t know,” he told HOOPSWORLD about his future with the Blazers. “All I can do is control what I can control and that’s play the game of basketball and the rest will work itself out.” HoopsWorld

December 27, 2012 Updates

Hickson, on the other hand, could be expendable, in part because he is playing out of this world, far better than his $4 million salary. After finishing with 17 points and 14 rebounds Wednesday, Hickson has nine consecutive double-doubles, and is averaging 12.8 points and 11.1 rebounds, statistics that could be pricing himself right out of Portland. Not only will teams be interested in his high-energy game, the Blazers might be interested in getting something in return before he hits the free agent market. Oregonian

December 25, 2012 Updates
December 21, 2012 Updates

But in talking to Hickson about his nightly effort, it struck a funny chord with the 6-foot-9 center. There was part of him that was offended. “Let me ask you a question,’’ Hickson said in the middle of my interview. “So just because I go out and get whatever how many rebounds, that makes me a hustle guy?’’ “No, I’m not saying you are a hustle guy,’’ I said. “I’m saying you play hard every night.’’ “OK, then why do people misconstrue playing your butt off for being a hustle guy?’’ Hickson asked. “I have no problem with it, I’m just asking you. What’s that line?’’ “I wouldn’t say you are a hustle guy, I would say you are an energy guy,’’ I countered. He thought for a second. “Ok, I will take that. That’s the only way I know how to play - all gas, no brakes. That’s the way I was taught to play the game,’’ Hickson said. Oregonian

November 29, 2012 Updates
November 8, 2012 Updates

Another thing that will help Aldridge this season is having J.J. Hickson next to him in the front court, ready to do some of the dirty work Aldridge isn’t as inclined to do. “He’s just active,” says Aldridge. “I think he compliments me well because he dives hard, he’s active on the boards, back to the rim. I need someone next to me that is high energy because I’m kind of mellow, so I need someone with that high energy. He’s been that so far and it’s been big for us.” There are some around the NBA who look at the Blazers and see a playoff team, and while they do look like a team that isn’t far off, Aldridge isn’t ready to make any such claim. “It’s too early, we’re just going to try and keep building, keep getting better every game,” says Aldridge. “If we keep growing, anything is possible. … I’m a realist. I’ve done this one or two times. When you have a really young team, you can be high and you can be low, so we’re just going to try and be in the middle.” HoopsWorld

September 26, 2012 Updates

And although this Blazers season will be littered with a heavy dose of new -- from coach to general manager to an overhauled roster that features five rookies -- Stotts says he will open training camp with Hickson at center, in part, because of his history with the team. "J.J. is the incumbent," Stotts said. "I'm not saying he's going to be the starting center opening night. We'll have to see how training camp goes, see how the preseason goes, and then we'll make that determination. Meyers (Leonard) has played very well (this summer). But it's just like politics: J.J. has been here, he's the returner, so going into it he has the advantage." Oregonian

July 13, 2012 Updates

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