But if the Knicks don't sign Leonard and Durant is no longer an option, you wonder if it still makes sense to pursue Davis in a trade. Prior to Durant's injury, the Knicks had talked to the Pelicans about a potential Davis trade, SNY sources confirm. The Pelicans, according to an ESPN report, weren't enamored by any offer the Knicks or any other suitors had made for Davis. So the Knicks had engaged in some dialogue with teams in an effort to improve their offer for Davis, per SNY sources.
It's unclear how far along -- if at all -- any of that dialogue was, but some people in the organization were uncomfortable with the idea of trading away significant assets for Davis, citing the way things played out for New York in the wake of the Carmelo Anthony trade, per SNY sources.
Davis submitted a four-team preferred destinations list to the Pelicans in February [...] but it is believed that list has been narrowed in focus. Davis is now focused on the Lakers and Knicks as the two desired long-term destinations, league sources told The Athletic. Davis has not given Griffin or the Pelicans a new formal list. He will be a free agent in 2020.
Several teams — including the Celtics — are aggressive about pursuing Davis understanding they would potentially lose him after one season, when he is set to become a free agent. The Celtics want to pursue Davis and believe in their roster with or without Kyrie Irving, league sources said.
The Knicks, owners of the No. 3 pick in the draft, have been motivated to pursue Davis sooner rather than later. The Lakers still have their young core of players intact, such as Lonzo Ball, Brandon Ingram, Kyle Kuzma and Josh Hart, and the No. 4 pick. There is intrigue to see how the Lakers handle these trade talks, after providing less-than-appealing offers to the Pelicans during the trade deadline in February. For the Knicks, securing Davis would be a step to try to begin attracting talent around Davis with a significant upcoming free-agent crop in Kevin Durant, Kawhi Leonard and Kyrie Irving.
New Orleans executive vice president of basketball operations David Griffin has started to provide potential suitors with the framework of the package that he is seeking in a trade for All-NBA forward Anthony Davis, including multi-team scenarios that would expand the Pelicans' pool of assets in a deal, league sources told ESPN. So far, Los Angeles and New York teams --- the Clippers and Lakers, Knicks and Nets -- have been among front offices inquiring with New Orleans, league sources said.
According to front offices who've engaged in conversations with Griffin, he hasn't sounded convinced that a singular team is likely to fulfill his wishes for a Davis deal. To that end, Griffin has been working to find multi-team trade scenarios that could redirect assets for players or picks more preferable to the Pelicans, sources said.
Griffin is pursuing a combination of assets that include an All-Star player, a young player with All-Star potential and two first-round picks, league sources said. Those wants are on a sliding scale. For example, the better the player, the softer the asks on the draft picks -- and vice versa.
But perhaps not, according to the latest episode of "The Crossover" with Chris Mannix. As he explains with his guest Rohan Nadkarni of Sports illustrated, if Irving were to walk in free agency, it wouldn't diminish the Celtics' appetite for Davis. "From what I understand, they're not going to take their foot off the gas when it comes to pursuing Anthony Davis," Mannix said.
The LA Clippers are not prepared to part with one former Kentucky star in order to acquire another. In an appearance Thursday on ESPN’s “The Sedano Show,” NBA insider Bobby Marks reported that guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander is “off the board” in any potential Clippers’ trade for Anthony Davis.
Fletcher Mackel: NBA source (who I trust a lot) told me tonight he thinks Boston is landing spot for Anthony Davis. Says Tatum is player NOLA covets most. Tatum, Smart (who @PelicansNBA also really like), filler (Williams, Ojeyele or Yabusele) & at least pick #14 this year.
According to ESPN's Dave McMenamin, a lot of people inside of New Orleans' organization wouldn't have to reconsider anything. They were high on the Lakers' offer from the start. Speaking on The Sedano Show, here's what's McMenamin had to say: I spoke to several people within the Pelicans' organization in the past several months that have a really high opinion of Brandon Ingram, and beyond just Brandon Ingram, have a really high opinion of the trade package that was on the table that was ultimately rejected.
If Irving indeed leaves Boston, it may have an impact on the teams in pursuit of Davis. The Celtics' interest in Davis was reportedly predicated on their desire to pair him with Irving. Without Irving, you'd think the Celtics would be less inclined to give up a significant amount of young players/draft picks to acquire Davis. That could make the Knicks' trade pitches to Irving more attractive to New Orleans. The Lakers are expected to be in the mix for Davis as well. Though, as other reports have noted, some people in positions of influence in New Orleans continue to prefer to deal Davis to a team other than the Lakers, per SNY sources.
While the sit-down on Wednesday was said to have been respectful and productive, Davis’ stance regarding his desire for a trade is highly unlikely to change, league sources have said. As teams continue placing calls into New Orleans, Griffin has begun listening to teams and their inquiries on Davis, league sources told The Athletic. Previously, the Pelicans had been trying to pitch Davis to stay — and now they are at least open to hearing people out.
Between now and the draft, teams will continue placing calls into the Pelicans. They already have been, and Griffin has started to listen, sources said. Griffin has the option of keeping Davis until the February trade deadline, if not all season, but the fact that Davis’ stance remains firm means the same thing now as it would later.
Across the NBA, rival executives believe the following teams will be able to compile the best packages: The Los Angeles Lakers, New York Knicks, Boston Celtics and Brooklyn Nets. Davis’ preferred destinations list of four teams includes the Lakers, Knicks and LA Clippers and that will embolden those teams to pursue him strongest of all.
As for Davis himself, he is in wait-and-see mode now and simply going about his workout regimen with fellow Pelicans players such as Holiday, Frank Jackson and Stanley Johnson. Griffin and Holiday spent time with each other in Los Angeles as well, league sources said, as Griffin continues to build strong rapports throughout his roster. Holiday is a cornerstone for the Pelicans, a two-way guard who has shouldered a leadership role for the franchise.
New Orleans Pelicans star Anthony Davis and David Griffin discussed the new executive vice president's vision for the franchise over breakfast in Los Angeles on Wednesday, league sources told ESPN. Davis, who requested a trade in January, and Griffin, who was hired in April, are expected to continue a dialogue in the near future, sources said.
Davis, 26, can become a free agent next summer, but Griffin has been determined on selling him on the Pelicans through a new prism. New Orleans plans to draft Duke's Zion Williamson with the No. 1 overall pick, and Griffin has made strides with hires in his front office, medical and training staff and practice facility improvements.
New Orleans could have eager trade suitors -- the Los Angeles Lakers and Clippers, Boston Celtics and New York Knicks -- should Griffin engage trade talks, but so far that hasn't happened, sources said. Griffin has been determined to make a case to Davis over time.
Shams Charania: New Orleans star Anthony Davis will meet with new Pelicans executive Vice President David Griffin today, league sources tell @TheAthleticNBA @Stadium.
According to the source, Griffin still believes he can have as good a Big Three as any team in the NBA next season, with Davis, Zion Williamson and star combo guard Jrue Holiday — especially if Kevin Durant bolts Golden State. Asked if he would consider trading the third pick, Mills all but brushed off the query. “We’re here to evaluate the players that are here and we’ll keep moving along in our process,’’ Mills said.
The Knicks are considering packaging their No. 3 pick to New Orleans in a trade for Anthony Davis. It would seem Durant would prefer a ready-made superstar as sidekick, but who knows if he’d rather have Barrett and Kyrie Irving instead — especially considering Durant’s rave reviews of Barrett’s southpaw advantage. “Getting crafty with the left,” Durant said, watching the video on a laptop. “See lefties are tough to guard, man. They can go right better than righties can go left and so a left-hander is hard to guard. He’s a lefty that uses his right, which is gonna help him. “Shoot the J, OK. Man, he’s athletic, man. He can play out top. That’s the thing. You got to be able to play out top, conduct the offense.
Fletcher Mackel: Per the “over my dead body” reports out there regarding Gayle Benson, the Lakers and Anthony Davis. I have spoken to Gayle. She laughed at the report and called it “totally absurd,” and “completely untrue.” @wdsu @basketballtalk @Rachel__Nichols
But Pelicans owner Gayle Benson fired Demps and said the new lead executive would report directly to her, not to Loomis. So, will anyone left in New Orleans stop a trade of Davis to the Lakers? Jackie MacMullan of ESPN: We have been told, I think, through channels – most of us have heard this same scuttlebutt – that Gayle Benson has basically told him, “To the Lakers, over my dead body.”
Similarly, New Orleans is also waiting on a meeting with Anthony Davis, and Pelicans sources say that discussion is expected to take place within the next week. David Griffin, who took over the team’s basketball operations last month, is planning to pitch Davis on staying put after a season that saw AD ask for a trade and say that, if that request wasn’t accommodated, he would opt out and leave as an unrestricted free agent in 2020.
There have been reports that Davis hasn’t moved from that stance, and if such is the case, sources here told the Herald the Pelicans will reach out to the Celtics as the most obvious trade partner. The Celts may still not be sure about a deal because it’s not known yet what the Pels will want in return for the All-Star, but there seems to be a belief that they’d be able to work things out.
The Los Angeles Lakers seemed like they might have the inside track on acquiring Davis after the two teams’ reported trade discussions earlier this season. However, the Pelicans came away from that debacle unhappy with how business was done. ESPN’s Brian Windhorst said this week on “The Russillo Show” podcast that he thinks the Pelicans are still ticked about that and won’t make a deal with the Lakers, especially after New Orleans landed the No. 1 pick. “I don’t think the Pelicans want to make a deal with the Lakers — when I say I don’t think, I know that’s how they feel,” Windhorst told Ryen Russillo. “Had the Lakers won the lottery and had Zion and had an opportunity to offer something like that, it would have been so overwhelming that I think it might have removed that impediment. There’s a lot of animosity and scar tissue built up between these two organizations. I feel very strongly that New Orleans does not want to make a deal with LA.”
Marc J. Spears: The good news for the Pelicans is even with Anthony Davis still wanting to depart at least his agent Rich Paul has a strong relationship with New Orleans executive newcomer David Griffin. Expect them to work to find a respectful way to facilitate the right move for both parties.
Griffin still has some work to do before convincing Davis to change his mind, sources told The Athletic, but this was certainly a pretty good first step in that process.
Anthony Davis would certainly consider re-signing with the Knicks if he felt he could be successful in New York, per SNY sources familiar with the matter. And here's how a Davis to New York trade could work:
“We want to create an environment that players are attracted to and we feel very strongly Anthony in totality will be attracted to what we can build and what we can offer,” said Griffin, who also admitted that winning the lottery may not necessarily convince Davis. “I don’t think it will play into it hugely,” Griffin said of Davis’s decision. “If he was open minded to believing that we could build a winner around him, [then] he’s more open minded to it.”
Marc J. Spears: “Guys, the one thing you got to understand is (Anthony Davis) is still on our roster,” Pelicans head coach Alvin Gentry said. “He is on our roster. All of that will take care of itself. I’m not worried about it. I know ‘Griff’ has some plans to talk to him and it will be fine.”
Shams Charania: The New Orleans Pelicans are now set up to be Zion Williamson’s franchise to lift, and No. 1 pick could ease potential trade of Anthony Davis. His stance on a trade has not changed, league sources tell @TheAthleticNBA @Stadium.
Will Guillory: Griffin won't talk about who he will select with the No. 1 pick, but he did say it should help with potentially recutting Anthony Davis: "Elite talent likes to play with elite talent"
Anthony Davis would certainly consider re-signing with the Knicks if he felt he could be successful in New York, per SNY sources familiar with the matter. And here's how a Davis to New York trade could work: Since the goal would likely be to pair Davis with two other stars, the Knicks would first sign their two max free agents in early July, using nearly all of their $70-plus million in cap space. They would then have to send out roughly $21.6 million in salary to satisfy NBA trade rules in a swap for Davis, who is making $27 million in 2019.
There are different ways to get to $21.6 million, but the easiest way to get there is to include their 2019 first-round pick. (The No. 1 pick can earn $9.7 in his first season.) It's worth noting, however, that there is no consensus among the Knicks as to whether they would include the 2019 No. 1 pick in a deal for Davis or any other star.
Benson called star forward Anthony Davis' mid-season trade request "disappointing," and added that the team's losing season was "frustrating for us all."
Pelicans GM David Griffin still has a goal of changing Anthony Davis’ mind on a trade and have him “buy into the program,’’ according to a source.
According to a source, the Pelicans have interest in both of the Knicks’ 2018 draft picks, Kevin Knox, their lottery pick, and second-rounder Mitchell Robinson, who happens to reside 15 minutes outside of New Orleans, in Chalmette, La. The Pelicans were one of the teams who came away impressed by Knox’s potential after his summer league, though he suffered through a roller-coaster rookie year.
Irving seems like a man who can’t wait to bounce, after walking back his statement in October that he planned to sign a long-term deal with Boston this summer. I’ve heard that Davis wouldn’t completely rule out staying with the Celtics without Irving, but the odds of him re-upping in that scenario are significantly lower.
Who New Orleans would want in a Davis package is unclear, of course. But you can be sure that the Pelicans would ask for first-round pick(s) in return for Davis. Would Kevin Knox be a player New Orleans asks about? Some people in the Pelicans organization were quietly gathering some intel on Knox recently, sources told SNY. Now, it's common for teams to gather information on players. That's part of the job of the front office/scouting department. But the uncertainty surrounding Davis' future in New Orleans makes their information-gathering on Knox (which was happening before Griffin took over) intriguing.
Worth noting: there is no consensus in the organization about trading its 2019 first-round pick, per sources. That's for Davis or anyone else. New York has seven first-round picks in the next five years, so they could offer future picks in a Davis package as well.
Fletcher Mackel: NBA source tells me: -David Griffin & Anthony Davis will meet in LA in 2 weeks. - Gayle Benson & Jrue Holiday may join Griff at meeting. - @PelicansNBA want AD to stay in NOLA. -Right now, no change for Davis, no indication he/Klutch Sports wavering, trade request stands.
Since it would not be surprising for the Lakers to reignite discussions around the 2019 NBA Draft, some within the Pelicans organization made an interesting admission, according to Dave McMenamin of ESPN: “I’ve spoken to people within the Pelicans organization and they admitted that that package was pretty attractive. But they also admitted it looks a lot different now when considering Ingram than it did back then.”
No matter where the Knicks select in the draft, if they signKevin Durant and another max player in free agency, there will be plenty of speculation over whether they will include their first-round pick in a trade package for a veteran such as Anthony Davis. But it's worth noting there is no consensus among decision-makers at this point about trading the 2019 first-round pick in a package for Davis or another veteran, sources said.
If the Knicks luck out and land Williamson in the draft, a package centered around him and other first-round picks or young Knicks -- such as Kevin Knox, Mitchell Robinson or Allonzo Trier -- might be enticing to the Pelicans. Even if the Knicks don't trade their first-round draft pick -- and there is no consensus that the organization would definitely trade its 2019 No. 1 pick in a package for Davis, sources said -- the Knicks would need to find a way to surround any incoming stars with other veterans.
Griffin, though, is staying positive, citing his relationship with Davis’ agent, Rich Paul of Klutch Sports. Paul, of course, represents Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James. The King and Griffin won the 2016 championship together with the Cleveland Cavaliers. “But I look at the situation with very good optimism and the reason is I have a very good working relationship with Rich Paul,” Griffin said on ESPN’s The Jump. “I think there’s going to be appreciation on his part for the fact that I would not have come here if it wasn’t for the fact that Mrs. Benson and her ownership team weren’t completely committed to winning. They very much are. Because of that, I think some of the concerns that Anthony probably had, we’re going to be able to alleviate. “I feel like there is reason to be optimistic that he’s going to be open minded to coming back. But the real question is, what does it look like and can we give each other what we really need and be the sort of expression of greatness for one another. I hope that we can. But it’s certainly not something we believe can’t happen.”
There isn't much optimism that Griffin can persuade Davis to stay in New Orleans, and surely, he knows that. But meeting with Davis and his agent, Rich Paul, is more about mending fences and restoring the Pelicans' reputation, especially among agents.
“Trade rumors don’t bother me,” he said in his deep monotone. “They’re talking about trading me for guys like Anthony Davis. So, I mean, I must be doing something pretty well.” When pressed on whether this bothered him, he didn’t budge: “I love the game of basketball. Being traded is part of the game. I’ll play for whomever. It’s something I can’t control.”
Will Guillory: Griffin says he believes AD is open to staying after discussions with Rich Paul. But he would prefer to establish if Davis is all-in or all-out on being with the Pelicans
Andrew Lopez: David Griffin on Anthony Davis: "We have a long successful history with Klutch Sports. Rich Paul and I have spoke about Anthony. We are both excited about what we could potentially build here."
Scott Kushner: David Griffin said he’s spoken to Rich Paul already and has plans to sit down with him and Anthony Davis. “You are either all the way in or all the way out. There’s no in between.”
Lillard's name rarely comes up. There's no back channeling, no offshore recruiting going on at events or All-Star Games. He isn't listening. But if you call, he'll have something to say: If you want to play with a star, come here. We're the ones that are winning. "I look at somebody that's close in age with me that's a really good player that could bump us up a level," Lillard said. "When I think of that, I'm saying, OK, Anthony Davis. We've got a winning culture. We win, we're not jealous of each other, we have a good time. "A player like that, when I think of these situations, that's what I think of. He'll win, he'll get to be himself and he'll get to be on a team that fits. I think he would be perfect for us."
David Griffin has agreed to a deal to become the Executive VP of Basketball Operations for the New Orleans Pelicans, league sources told ESPN on Friday. The immediate mandate for Griffin is unmistakable: Navigate a trade of All-NBA star Anthony Davis that'll shape the future of the franchise. Griffin will have full control of basketball operations, league sources said.
Adrian Wojnarowski: Pelicans and David Griffin have an agreement in principle, league sources tell ESPN. Griffin will take over the franchise and now oversee the trade process for Anthony Davis.
Nick Friedell: Anthony Davis on if he thinks he'll get traded this summer: "It's hard to say that when they're looking for a GM. Not sure what the new GM is thinking or what they plan to do but as soon as the Pelicans appoint a GM then those questions will definitely be asked."
Nick Friedell: Davis OK starting next season w/Pels? "I'm under contract still. I have a year left. Obviously it's a possibility it could happen. I don't have ill will towards anybody. I know that it's a possibility that next year I could be here as well. So I can't be mad if I'm here next yr"
Nick Friedell: Davis is walking around Pels facility with a bunch of his jerseys and passing them out to people. He just gave one to Jrue Holiday as Holiday spoke to media. AD: Say good things about me. Holiday: Always, bruh. I said you wasn't leaving. Media chuckles. AD barely breaks stride
Davis formally requested to be traded in late January, and is expected to be dealt this summer. The fallout from Davis’ decision, and the Pelicans’ handling of the issue at the deadline, contributed to the firing of New Orleans GM Dell Demps, and the shocking resignation of Lakers president Magic Johnson on Tuesday night. According to Pelicans coach Alvin Gentry, the ordeal traces back to “bad advice” given to Davis. “I think he’s a great kid. I think he’s a very good kid. I think he’s a solid guy….. I think he got some bad advice. If you want me to tell the truth…. I’ll leave it at that. But there’s nothing wrong with AD. He’s a good solid guy with good character. That’s the way I feel.”
Nick Friedell: Gentry said the fallout from the Davis trade discussions for the both the Lakers and the Pelicans was the most ‘toxic’ situation he’s seen in 31 years in the league.
Nick Friedell: Gentry on Davis: "I think he's a great kid. I think he's a very good kid. I think he's a solid guy ... I think he got some bad advice." How so? "I'll leave it at that. But there's nothing wrong with AD. He's a good solid guy with good character. That's the way I feel."
Ryan Ward: Magic Johnson on if Anthony Davis situation played into resignation: "No. That had nothing to do with it. We want to improve the team. That's what my job is to do, and then you guys made it like, 'Oh, the young guys..."
The Lakers will now turn their attention to an offseason in which they are expected to revisit trade options for Davis, while also chasing top targets in free agency – as unlikely as it is that Kawhi Leonard, Kevin Durant or Klay Thompson will come, according to a league source who believes the Lakers will be second or third on those players’ lists. The fear that the Lakers could strike out with their top targets has already led to some message massaging. “You don’t need names, you need games,” a source close to James told The Athletic. The Lakers could build a team of complementary pieces better suited for James, like Boston’s Marcus Morris or Milwaukee’s Nikola Mirotic, and fare better than they did this season. But it would run counter to Johnson’s stated philosophy. After all, on a World Series broadcast last fall, Johnson declared, “I’m going to get another superstar next summer!”
Do they go back to the well with AD again given Ingram’s health situation? Brian Windhorst: I think it’s only responsible if they do. This is one thing I don’t quite understand. When Jeanie Buss called it fake news or whatever, I understand that it caused some problems in the chemistry of the team.
Brian Windhorst: Do I love their chances? I do not. Because the prime asset they could offer is Brandon Ingram and Ingram has had a very unfortunate thing happen and there’s just a lot of uncertainty there. I don’t like their chances of pulling it off but they’ve got to go back to the Well.
"Not many of these wings or point guards are going to want to partner with LeBron," said an assistant GM. "LeBron's best chance at getting another star with him is going to be Anthony Davis, Boogie Cousins, the bigs."
Golden State Warriors center and former member of the New Orleans Pelicans DeMarcus Cousins knew star big man Anthony Davis was going to request a trade from the Pelicans. Cousins says after all the “goofy junk that went down” last summer with him and the franchise during free agency, he knew Davis was going to ask out of New Orleans:
Chris Haynes: Sat down w/ @boogiecousins to talk working way back to form, fan interactions, pending free-agency, narrative on his defense, real NBA tough guys, when he knew AD wanted out, winning a title, his comedy show & plenty more...
Kobe Bryant publicly endorsed trading the Los Angeles Lakers' young players for Anthony Davis. The Lakers had included Kyle Kuzma, Lonzo Ball and Brandon Ingram in trade talks with the New Orleans Pelicans for Davis. "Kuzma, Lonzo, Ingram ... Are all three better than Anthony Davis? No no!. Ciao! Bye! "Anthony Davis is one of the best players in the world. Not just now but in history. What are we talking about? If you can acquire Anthony Davis, you do it. If not, agree. We have three players who are very young and who work hard. They are intelligent and must be developed. But if you can acquire Anthony Davis ... yes!"
The Lakers are going to miss the playoffs again. Will they figure it out this summer? Kobe Bryant: I feel like they’re in a position where they have two pathways that they can take. Both will work out just fine. But they’re both just different decisions, right? And what do you do with some of the young pieces that you have? Do you trade them, or do you keep them and allow them to develop? Either way will be fine. One will be a little faster than others in terms of fast-tracking and players you bring in to play with LeBron. Other may be a little slower in developing. May be. But they’re in a really good position. This season has been tough, but you know listen, they were playing well and then they got hit with a bunch of injuries in rapid succession and things happen sometimes. But they’ll be back next year.
Do you think the Anthony Davis situation misled the franchise and the players? Kobe Bryant: “I say no. [Kyle] Kuzma, Lonzo [Ball], [Brandon] Ingram… are the three of them better than Anthony Davis? No! Ciao! Bye! Anthony Davis is one of the best players in the world. Not currently, in history. What are we talking about? If you can trade for Anthony Davis, you do it. If not, alright. We have three players who are very young and work hard. They’re smart and they have to develop. But if you can trade for Anthony Davis… yes!”
They still have Davis and will look to trade him this summer. He’ll become a free agent in 2020, but they control where he’ll spend next season. Marc J. Spears on ESPN, filming in Los Angeles: "I have been told that there’s no way Anthony Davis is coming here, through the Pelicans." ... "They’re just not going to do it."
Michael Wilbon confirmed he heard the same. Maybe the Pelicans really believe they’ll keep Davis from Los Angeles no matter what. And maybe they’ll be that stubborn. But a lot will change before New Orleans trades Davis.
Jayson Tatum on whether the Anthony Davis trade talks between New Orleans and Boston last month affected his game… (The two teams can’t do a deal until this summer, but are known to have had preliminary talks that included the possibility of Tatum being included). “Nah, because I just love to play basketball. I’ll play for whoever wants me, and that organization. You know, this is a business, and I understand that it’s not always personal. I’m kind of mature for my age, I understood. I’ve been in this business for a long time, so if it happened it happened, if it didn’t then my job was to just go play basketball.
Something like the opposite has happened. Parceling out blame is tricky. LeBron is so powerful that separating him from any part of an organization is impossible. The midseason gambit to acquire Anthony Davis almost certainly doesn't happen, or become so public, without at least LeBron's tacit go-ahead. Those talks sapped morale, sources say. Ditto for Magic Johnson's post-deadline lecture about treating the Lakers' young players "like babies." LeBron's eye-rolling on-court scoldings, a staple whenever he feels things sinking, did nothing to reverse any of that. Unbecoming, but not new.
Here is what we do know. The Lakers made several aggressive offers to New Orleans involving all of their core young players of Lonzo Ball, Brandon Ingram, Kyle Kuzma and Josh Hart. The Pelicans had no intent to trade Davis before the offseason, however, especially not to the Lakers, league sources said. The NBA is a business, however, and these conversations involving the Lakers’ talented young core was warranted, whether they were taken personally or not.
It is possible Buss was not made aware of every aspect of the play-by-play as trade talks developed. Throughout the two-week saga stemming from Davis’ trade request, the Pelicans became frustrated about how public the Lakers-initiated discussions had become. “We get off the phone with (the Lakers), and a minute later, offers are out there,” one Pelicans source with direct knowledge of discussions told The Athletic.
Yet, according to a source with knowledge of the situation, the real root of the comments was much more nuanced it might have appeared. From Jeanie on down, there is a growing belief that rival teams like New Orleans have gone to great lengths to do the kind of subversive damage that is nearly impossible to prove. Johnson himself has said that he doesn’t believe the Pelicans negotiated in good faith, and it certainly was unique to see trade packages with remarkable specificity being reported throughout the process.
New Orleans Pelicans star Anthony Davis, who requested a trade earlier this season, said on LeBron James' HBO show that he's asserting a greater degree of control over his career. "All the media coverage [is] around me, and now I'm getting a chance to take over my career and say what I want to say and do what I want to do," Davis said on an episode of "The Shop with LeBron James" that aired on HBO on Friday. "So now you see everybody [saying], 'All right, I see AD changing.' Everybody's telling me, 'You're growing up. It's about time to take care of your business, take care of your career.' So now, as a player, as the CEO of my own business, I've got the power. I'm doing what I want to do and not what somebody tells me to do."
Davis, who can become a free agent in 2020, said the uncertainty in the aftermath of his trade demand has been challenging. "It is tough because you just don't know. I don't know," he said. "I have one year left on contract, so I'm not sure what they're gonna do. Obviously, I stated my intentions. But I did that this year and they [said], 'No, we're going to keep you here.' So for me, it's just not knowing what's going to happen."
The Celtics are playing to win it all — but they are also focusing on winning in June and July, too. Around the NBA’s Feb. 7th trade deadline, Boston made their intentions clear to the New Orleans Pelicans surrounding their pursuit of All-NBA star Anthony Davis after the season, league sources told The Athletic: Everyone can be available.
Chris Haynes on where Anthony Davis will be to start the 2019-20 season: "I'm going to go with the Lakers. That's my prediction: I think he starts next season with the Lakers… If he maintains the stance that he's not doing Boston [long-term] – and that's with or without Kyrie [Irving] – I think LA has the best package. We may have to wait and see about New York because if they get the No. 1 overall pick, they could be in the game as well. But I think, at the end of the day, he'll end up in LA.”
Ainge was not able to address a possible Davis deal specifically, but when asked about the possibility of signing a player to a two-year deal with the intention of using the salary in a trade this summer, he said: “We’ve looked at all those possibilities, yeah. We’re just waiting to see. Nothing is in the works.”
September 17, 2021 | 4:34 am EDT Update
Marc Gasol is a name to watch. He just wiggled his way away from the Lakers and, according to an ESPN report, plans to remain in Spain while sorting out the next (and perhaps last) phase of his playing career. Gasol nearly signed with the Warriors last summer — and might have done so had Thompson not ruptured his Achilles before free agency. It may never materialize, but he has the exact passing acumen and center skill set that has traditionally fit Kerr’s offense best, similar to David West and Andrew Bogut.
Frank Vogel’s former assistant coach Jason Kidd left the Los Angeles Lakers to become the head coach of the Dallas Mavericks. He joined fellow former NBA stars Richard Jefferson and Kendrick Perkins on ESPN’s The Jump to talk about his visit to Slovenia for the signing of a 5-year $207 million super max extension with Luka Doncic. “One, [Slovenia] is a beautiful country,” Kidd recalled his visit to Luka’s homeland. “I had a lot of fun and spending time at dinner with Luka and also at the press conference. What an incredible 22-year-old. He’s wise before his years. So I’m just excited to have the opportunity to coach him.”
“It was incredible again. Another beautiful place,” Kidd said on ESPN’s The Jump. “I got to hang out with KP. We had a couple dinners, I got to see him work out. But I also got to just see him on his turf I think a lot of times we don’t get to see our Europeans their homes. So I got the opportunity to go over there and hang out and we had a great time. “KP’s incredible not just a basketball player but a person. We all know.. well, I just learned that he loves the fights, the boxing matches and stuff like that. You look at just learning something new about a person by going to their hometown was something that I was excited about doing and I had a great time.”
There’s no denying that Denver Nuggets stud Michael Porter Jr. is one of the brightest young talents in the NBA today. However, for those who may not be too familiar with his injury history, there was actually one point in his career that people doubted if he would ever be able to play again. Apparently, one of his biggest non-believers happened to be the head doctor for the Los Angeles Clippers. The Nuggets forward remembers that exact moment to this very day: “All Top 10 teams have their doctors there and they’re just evaluating me,” Porter said in a recent appearance on JJ Redick’s The Old Man & the Three podcast. “The guy from the Clippers was the head doctor and he’s the one that wrote the report, it’s like, ‘yeah, he probably will never play again.’”
In this Club Shay Shay clip, the new Phoenix Suns big man JaVale McGee tells Shannon Sharpe what to expect in his former Golden State Warriors teammate Klay Thompson’s return: “I expect the old Klay. I can maybe see him slacking on defense in the first month because in the offseason you don’t get those reps. But offensively, he didn’t hurt his arm, so that boy is going to shoot.”
UFC fighter Ryan Spann trains at the gym owned by ex-NBA star Deron Williams … and the light heavyweight contender once sparred with the hooper — AND GOT HIS BUTT KICKED!! “Deron whooped my ass one day. I’m dead serious. You can call him and ask him,” Spann told TMZ Sports.
Context? We talked to the 30-year-old, 6’5″, 205 lb. fighter just days before he’s set to face 6th ranked LHW, Anthony Smith … and we asked the 11th ranked fighter if he ever rolled around with 6’3″ Williams at their gym, Fortis MMA in Dallas. “I was training for a fight, and coach was like, ‘Deron, get in.’ And, I already knew he hooped, and I knew who he was, but I never got to go with him,” Ryan said, “I think it was my 2nd or my 3rd round with a fresh body, and you put Deron in, I was like, ‘Oh s**t, nice, I get a round off.’ Little did I know Deron used to wrestle. And, he was about 230 at the time.”
Gabrielle Union, the wife of former Miami Heat superstar Dwyane Wade, recently opened up about the trauma she endured when Wade had a child with another woman during their relationship. Union and Wade weren’t married at the time, but they were several years into a relationship with each other. “In 2013, before we were married, Dwyane had a baby with another woman,” Union wrote in her new memoir. “It should go without saying that we were not in a good place in our relationship at the time that child was conceived. But we were in a much better place when he finally told me about the pregnancy. To say I was devastated is to pick a word on a low shelf for convenience. There are people — strangers who I will never meet — who have been upset that I have not previously talked about that trauma. I have not had words, and even after untold amounts of therapy I am not sure I have them now. But truth matters.”