NBA rumors: Blazers-Clippers trade now official

The Trail Blazers have acquired guards Eric Bledsoe and Keon Johnson and forward Justise Winslow from the LA Clippers in exchange for Norman Powell and Robert Covington, the team announced today. Portland also received Detroit’s 2025 second-round pick from the Clippers in the trade.

More on Eric Bledsoe Trade?

Law Murray: This trade is not necessarily a move that suggests that Jason Preston would be ready to contribute anytime soon, league source says. Team has open roster spots and will continue to look to tinker with the roster. Team has a surplus of wings right now.
Bobby Marks: Here are the contracts: For LAC: 🏀N. Powell: $15.5M, $16.8M, $18M, $19.2M, $20.5M 🏀R. Covington: $13M (UFA w/bird rights) For POR: 🏀E. Bledsoe: $18.1M, $19.4M ($3.9M guaranteed) 🏀J. Winslow: $3.9M, $4.1M 🏀K. Johnson: $2.6M, $2.7M, $2.8M, $4.5M
The trade gives the Grizzlies salary-cap flexibility in the summer of 2022, when Bledsoe is guaranteed $3.9 million of the $19.3 million in the last year of his deal. Memphis has 16 guaranteed contracts now and will be open to trades for some of the players returning in this deal, sources said. The Grizzlies are open-minded on how they all might fit into the team, but Memphis already has a packed roster.
The LA Clippers are trading Patrick Beverley, Rajon Rondo and Daniel Oturu to the Memphis Grizzlies for guard Eric Bledsoe, sources told ESPN on Sunday. The deal saves the Clippers $30 million in luxury tax and creates an $8.3 million traded-player exception that they will have a year to use. Bledsoe, 31, was drafted by the Clippers in 2010 and spent the first three years of his career with the franchise. A two-time member of the NBA's All-Defensive team, Bledsoe is expected to play a significant role in the Clippers' guard rotation.
Bobby Marks: Nice cap work by the Pelicans. The addition of Wes Iwundu into the trade allows New Orleans to create a $17M trade exception (Adams outgoing salary) 1 trade was broken into 3 with the main component of Valanciunas/Graham for Bledsoe/Iwundu
Rival teams believe Eric Bledsoe could be on the move, with his salary inhibiting the team’s flexibility to make broader changes to the roster. New Orleans remains focused on adding veteran talent, and has also explored the possibility of trading up in the draft.
Steven Adams and Eric Bledsoe were two guys that some executives I had spoken to around the league felt could be tradeable guys for New Orleans. If you’re going to try to offer Lowry the type of money he’s looking for in free agency, they have to move one of those guys… The interest in Lowry makes sense for New Orleans trying to get better. I don’t think he’s this Chris Paul type of player who can elevate them to where the Suns were as a championship contender, but he’d certainly make them better for the short term.
Eric Bledsoe and Steven Adams are two veterans who were brought in to fill in the holes as essential role players last season, and they both ended up having fairly disappointing seasons. Sources say there’s an expectation that at least one of them will be on the move this offseason, with hopes of adding more depth to the roster. It’s unclear how much New Orleans would be willing to give up to make sure a trade happens involving either one of them. As tough as it may be to move some of these pieces around, I would be completely floored if the Pels try to roll out the same starting five next season.
Scotto: I think Eric Bledsoe is a name you’re definitely going to hear this summer in trade conversations. I also wouldn’t be shocked if Steven Adams came up because they’ve got Jaxson Hayes, who they want to eventually be the long-term guy ideally after drafting him in the lottery. Adams can still be a valuable piece to more of a playoff contender.
Teams in need of a point guard are preparing for Ball in free agency even with the Pelicans owning matching rights. New Orleans has only $91 million on its books for next season, giving the team cap space and plenty of room under the tax line. But Josh Hart, who has also been proficient playing alongside Williamson, will also be a restricted free agent -- and likely will be a more cost-efficient option than Ball. Attempts to move Eric Bledsoe, who is owed $18 million next year, haven't been successful.
Yes, the Pelicans love their young core of Zion Williamson, Brandon Ingram, Jaxson Hayes, Nickeil Alexander-Walker, et. al. But if you’re wondering why Lonzo Ball’s name is coming up in trade talks, it’s in part due to New Orleans’ desire to move off some of its expensive, longer deals. While Ball’s deal is expiring (at about $11 million), Eric Bledsoe and Steven Adams both have two full seasons left, for nearly $90 million. Ball could serve as a reward to a trade partner for taking on one of those contracts.
The other includes the names that have been bandied about by executives around the league for weeks now: Ball, Bledsoe and Redick. "They're willing to move on from all of those guys," said a West scout.
Veteran point guard Eric Bledsoe also is very available, but sources say his market has been minimal so far.
And while he was brought in by Griffin to serve as a playoff-tested cultural leader, Alvin Gentry's coaching staff even lobbied the front office to move on from him last season, sources said. There's now a widespread sense New Orleans is hoping to move Redick to a franchise closer to his family in Brooklyn. "I think they're just trying to do right by him," said a league source close to the situation.
At 31, Bledsoe's own defensive deficiencies make him a suboptimal starting option in the backcourt, and the point guard does not match a Pelicans timeline that features the younger Williamson and Ingram. Moving Bledsoe would also afford more playing time for Nickeil Walker-Alexander and Kira Lewis Jr., two young ball-handlers the front office is said to be particularly bullish on but who have been trapped behind the veteran in Stan Van Gundy's rotation. "That's the challenge when you bring in an old-school coach," said a rival scout.
Brian Windhorst: There have also been rumors about Kelly Oubre-Lonzo Ball trade. I mean that's no secret, that's sort of been out there. (...) The Pelicans have struggled, especially defensively. (...) They've shopped their guards. They've shopped Eric Bledsoe, Ball and JJ Redick.
Shams Charania: Trade complete: MIL: Jrue Holiday, No. 60 pick Sam Merrill NOLA: Steven Adams, Eric Bledsoe, ‘25/'27 1sts, ‘24/'26 swaps via MIL OKC: George Hill, Josh Gray, Kenrich Williams, Zylan Cheatham, Darius Miller, ‘23 protected 1st via Denver, two 2nd round picks DEN: RJ Hampton
Kevin O'Connor: Sources: The Bucks pursued a trade with the Thunder for Dennis Schroder and were deep in trade negotiations last week. Ultimately, the Lakers landed Schroder. Now the Bucks must move on to other targets. Eric Bledsoe remains the player Milwaukee is dangling most in trade talks.
Chris Mannix: The Lakers had explored a deal for Milwaukee’s Eric Bledsoe, league sources told @SInow. A Schroder trade would remove that from consideration. If completed, Lakers would be armed with a young, versatile guard coming off his most complete NBA season.
Multiple league sources say the Bucks are active in trade discussions; they’re looking to move on from Eric Bledsoe, and have offered him to several teams. They’re also in pursuit of Rockets forwards Robert Covington and P.J. Tucker; Houston doesn’t have a pick in this draft and is moving toward a retooling period with Russell Westbrook wanting out. If the Bucks stay here, or even if the pick is traded, it’s hard to see Anthony dropping any further. He was a top high-school recruit and a projected lottery pick heading into the season. He had a disastrous freshman season at North Carolina, but his shot-creation skills could ultimately add a lot to any offense he’s part of.
Multiple league sources say the Bucks are active in trade discussions; they’re looking to move on from Eric Bledsoe, and have offered him to several teams.
It is an open secret in the NBA that the Bucks are going to try to trade Eric Bledsoe, although no current trade discussions are taking place, a league source said on Thursday. What needs to be discussed in the days and weeks ahead is whether moving Middleton for a more proven playoff performer needs to happen, too.
The 39-6 Milwaukee Bucks have the best record in the NBA and have refuted a report that they would be willing to deal guard Eric Bledsoe if offered an enticing return package. "We have no talked to any teams about trading [Bledsoe], since the day that we traded for him," Bucks general manager Jon Horst told Bleacher Report's Howard Beck. "And I think it's evident, pretty strongly, in the fact that we extended Eric, what he means to us. The fact that we currently have the best record in the NBA, had the best record last year in the NBA, he's an All-NBA First Team defender and a guy that we feel strongly should be an All-Star for the Milwaukee Bucks this year. We have not had those conversations, and we are not going to trade Eric Bledsoe."
Around the same time, the Nuggets were in the red zone -- if not at the goal line -- in talks with Phoenix for Eric Bledsoe, according to several league sources. The deal would almost certainly have included Mudiay and a first-round pick. Talks collapsed, and the Nuggets washed their hands of it. They would chase a playoff spot in one of the toughest conferences in history behind a 20- and 21-year-old sharing the controls with Jokic. Connelly would not comment on specific trade talks. "We chase every opportunity to improve ourselves," he says. "We've had a lot of excellent players offered to us for our young talent. There's a fine line between overvaluing your own players and being too aggressive chasing short-term results."
After four seasons of enduring constant roster instability and postseason absences, point guard Eric Bledsoe told ESPN he is happy to be embarking on a new chapter with the resurging Milwaukee Bucks. "It means a lot to me," Bledsoe, 27, told ESPN in a phone interview on Tuesday. "I'm in my prime and headed to a competitive situation in the Eastern Conference. This is a great time for me and my family. We're looking forward to getting started in Milwaukee. I had a great time in Phoenix, but I'm excited for what's next."
During radio interviews in the days that followed, McDonough questioned Bledsoe's leadership and continually stated that he was receiving bad advice. Bledsoe chose not to respond directly to McDonough's comments, but said he wanted to clear his name. "Not really," he said when asked if he wanted to respond to being perceived as dishonest. "The situation is over with. What's done is done. I can't wait to join the Bucks, but I'm not a liar."
After four seasons of enduring constant roster instability and postseason absences, Eric Bledsoe tells ESPN that he is happy to be moving on to embark on a new chapter with the resurging Milwaukee Bucks. "It means a lot to me," the 27-year-old guard told ESPN in a phone interview on Tuesday. "I'm in my prime, and headed to a competitive situation in the Eastern Conference. This is a great time for me and my family. We're looking forward to getting started in Milwaukee. I had a great time in Phoenix, but I'm excited for what's next."
"I felt like it was time [to leave], especially when they sat me down last year," Bledsoe acknowledged. "It gave me a better picture, a more clearer picture of what I needed to do." At the time, word trickled out that he was dealing with "knee soreness," possibly to justify shutting him down. "I was 100 percent healthy then, and I'm 100 percent healthy now," he said adamantly.
With the way things ended for Bledsoe in Phoenix, is that something that bothered you or gave you any pause? Jon Horst: “No, because with everything we do we do our due diligence. In surveying the league and getting that information, to a person everyone thinks very highly of Eric. I think in this business sometimes the business aspect of it takes over. … I think he was in a tough situation.”
Does Bledsoe fit more than Monroe in the way the modern NBA looks and feels and in a way that makes the Bucks a more competitive team in the modern NBA? Jon Horst: “I don’t buy into that. Greg Monroe’s a really good player. Greg was really productive for us on the floor, he’s a great person off the floor. He helped us have a lot of success here and we’re thankful for him and the things that he did for us in helping a young team grow. I think players like Greg Monroe have a role in this NBA without a doubt.”

https://twitter.com/Bucks/status/928017044884393984
Outside of Antetokounmpo, Eric Bledsoe will likely be playing alongside Malcolm Brogdon. Already showing strides in year two, the Bucks current starting point guard is curious to see how the two mesh in the backcourt when he arrives. “You know at this point, you can’t be sure,” Brogdon told Basketball Insiders Tuesday of what the acquisition does for the team. “I think it’ll be a positive. Losing Moose [Monroe] is definitely a negative for us. He brought so much to the table for us, especially coming off the bench. He’s a starter that came off the bench. But you know, having another guard that can really create his own shot, get downhill and make plays—I think that will definitely help us.”
Malcolm Brogdon told Basketball Insiders that we could be watching the Bucks play with more guard-heavy sets in small ball moving forward. When asked if that fits his skill set, he immediately nodded his head in approval. “We’re a defensive-minded team, but we want to be fast,” Brogdon told Basketball Insiders. “We want to play in the open court and we want to be very versatile and be able to defend multiple positions on defense. Having more guards and sort of mid-sized guys is gonna help us.”
Bobby Marks: The Bucks will create a $3.38M Trade Exception and fall $4.4M below the luxury tax after shipping out Greg Monroe in exchange for Eric Bledsoe. The point guard has a $14.5M cap hit this year and $15M next season. The Bucks now have $106M in contracts next season, roughly $16M below the luxury tax. Bringing back restricted free agent Jabari Parker will likely push Milwaukee into the tax. Milwaukee also has a $5M Trade Exception that will expire in February.
The Phoenix Suns and Milwaukee Bucks have reached an agreement on a trade that will send point guard Eric Bledsoe to Milwaukee in exchange for center Greg Monroe and a future first-round draft pick, a person with direct knowledge of the agreement confirmed to USA TODAY Sports. The person spoke under the condition of anonymity because the trade had not yet been made official. Bledsoe, 27, hasn't played since his infamous "I don't want be here" tweet, which he sent shortly before the news broke that Suns head coach Earl Watson had been fired just three games into the season. Suns general Manager Ryan McDonough said afterwards that Bledsoe "won't be" with the team going forward.
Adrian Wojnarowski‏: Suns finalizing deal to send Eric Bledsoe to Bucks, league sources tell @ZachLowe_NBA and me.
Adrian Wojnarowski: Phoenix finalizing deal to send Eric Bledsoe to Milwaukee for Greg Monroe and a first-round draft pick, sources tell @Zach Lowe and me.
Bobby Marks: The Bucks will gain luxury tax flexibility this season with the Eric Bledsoe $14.5M cap hit. Milwaukee was $1M below the tax before the trade and are now $4.3M. Next year is where things get complicated for Milwaukee. The Bledsoe 2018–19 $15M salary has the Bucks with $116M in guaranteed salaries, $6M below the tax. The restricted free agency of Jabari Parker will push the Bucks into the tax. The Bucks will also gain a $3.38M trade exception.
There have been several teams pursuing a deal for Bledsoe, giving the Suns several potential offers to choose from, but they continue to hold off in hopes of receiving more value. Prior to the season, Bledsoe had amicably informed the Suns’ ownership and front office about his desire for a trade, but was sent away from the team in late October with the expectation of a trade. He has this season and 2018-19 remaining on his contract.
Last season Cousins got his wish with a trade out of Sacramento and now Bledsoe is seeking the same out of Phoenix. After four years in Phoenix, Bledsoe wants to win and Wall understands his plight. "I talk to him all the time," Wall said. "He's just sitting back and being a professional. He can't do nothing about it. He doesn't want to be there. He wants to go somewhere else. It's kind of all in the Suns' hands and where they want to trade him to and what they want to get back for him. He's still working out every day and being a dad at home."
It was reminiscent of last season, when similar rumors surfaced about Jackson being shopped around the league during the trade deadline and after the season. “It was crazy yesterday,” Van Gundy said Friday. “I left practice yesterday and there’s a rumor out on Reggie and Bledsoe so I had to get home and call Reggie and say we’re not trading you for Bledsoe. I don’t usually address all of them but it’s early in the (season). You can’t address all of them at the trade deadline, but I felt the need to address this.”
Jackson said he hadn’t heard about any of the rumors before Van Gundy contacted him at about 3 p.m. Thursday. “I don’t pay attention and really don’t care (about rumors),” Jackson said. “Everybody’s media nowadays. Anybody can write anything and it can go on the web. That’s the beauty and downfall of the internet. Who cares? Everybody’s going to talk and have their own opinion. “I’m still in Detroit and still here to compete and make my team the best it can be. If something else happens, it happens. That’s not something I’m concerned about.”
New Orleans was the third team involved in today's Eric Bledsoe-to-Detroit talks, multiple sources told SI.com. After a morning of trade discussions, the proposed deal is now dead.
The deal would have landed Jackson in New Orleans, adding more shooting and playmaking on the perimeter and finally freeing the Pelicans of two large contracts the team has persistently tried to shed.
The Detroit Pistons offered a package including point guard Reggie Jackson and a first-round pick to the Phoenix Suns for guard Eric Bledsoe, a league source told Basketball Insiders. Phoenix turned down the proposal, Basketball Insiders has learned. Detroit’s interest in acquiring Bledsoe was first reported by the New York Times. According to ESPN, Phoenix would prefer a third team to take on Jackson in any potential deal involving Bledsoe. Although Detroit’s first proposal wasn’t enough for Phoenix to pull the trigger, a third team can be added with those same pieces to complete the trade equation at another time.
Several teams have shown interest in Okafor as a reclamation project, and league sources said that the aftermath of a possible Phoenix Suns guard Eric Bledsoe trade could trigger the freeing of a roster spot or salary cap space for a team to absorb Okafor. The Suns have been monitoring Okafor's circumstance with the 76ers, and a Bledsoe deal could create the moving parts around the league necessary for Okafor to be relocated.
McDonough said by text message Monday that he had no timetable for a potential Bledsoe trade. It’s been speculated that Phoenix could wait until Dec. 15, when players who signed as free agents in the offseason are eligible to be traded. “We are open to doing a deal whenever the best offer presents itself,” McDonough said. “Any other comments or thoughts from me would be pure speculation at this point.”
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August 14, 2022 | 3:06 am EDT Update

Kevin Durant holding out of training camp?

Brian Windhorst spent much of his Friday episode of “Brian Windhorst & The Hoop Collective” podcast talking about Durant’s situation. Windhorst said he felt the Nets won the recent showdown between Durant and team owner Joe Tsai. But Windy doesn’t necessarily think that means all is over between the sides. In fact, Windhorst says he now could see a world where Durant holds out of training camp. “A week ago, if you had asked me, ‘Will Kevin Durant hold out of training camp if he is not traded?’ I would have been like, ‘eh, I can’t see it.’ Now I can see it. That is what we are headed towards,” Windhorst said.
Longtime basketball writer Marc Stein reported on Saturday that a matchup between the Grizzlies and the rival Golden State Warriors is on the NBA’s preliminary schedule for the 2022-23 season. Morant, the Memphis star, responded to the news with some trash talk for Warriors counterpart Draymond Green. “we got what we wanted dray. @Money23Green,” Morant tweeted along with a photo of a heated moment he had on the court with Green last year. Green was actually fairly muted and deferential in his response to Morant, tweeting back, “That’s the power of your voice Young! Let’s gooooo! Bring the fam to the crib for dinner after.”
The lawsuit says that by sharing the photos, those involved — including the deputy at the bar and firefighters weeks later at an awards banquet — violated the victims’ families’ constitutional rights to control images of their loved ones’ remains. “Mrs. Bryant feels ill at the thought of strangers gawking at images of her deceased husband and child, and she lives in fear that she or her children will one day confront horrific images of their loved ones online,” Bryant’s lawyers wrote in a complaint. “Many social media users have claimed to have seen photos of the victims’ remains, and their accounts are plausible given the number of deputies who took photos, the ease with which cellphone pictures are transmitted and saved in cloud storage, and the Sheriff’s Department’s egregious failure to take reasonable steps to prevent dissemination of the photos.”
Storyline: Vanessa Bryant Lawsuit
Surveillance video inside the bar showing Cruz and Gutierrez interacting and appearing to look at Cruz’s cellphone together played throughout his testimony. At times, it appeared that Cruz and Gutierrez were smiling and laughing after viewing the photos — but Gutierrez disputed that interpretation. “What type of human being would laugh at photos of other human beings like that?” he said. Bryant, sitting in the courtroom, repeatedly wiped away tears and, at times, held her head in her hands. At one point, while Gutierrez testified about the photos, she asked the judge for permission to leave the courtroom. She stood up and walked out, wiping tears from her eyes. The trial is expected to last at least another week, with 52 total witnesses slated to appear. Villanueva and Bryant are among those scheduled to testify.
August 13, 2022 | 9:32 pm EDT Update