Adam Aaronson: Woj on the Lakers: “Almost every team I’ve talked to in the league has been offered some combination of Kuzma and KCP.”
Jake Fischer: Of note regarding the Kyle Lowry-Lakers rumors: It seems Los Angeles became open to discussing all of Dennis Schroder, Montrezl Harrell and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope with rival teams as of Monday night, and that chatter has not since quieted among league executives.
ESPN's Brian Windhorst reported Tuesday on The Hoop Collective podcast there's been "some chatter" around the Lakers in the days before the deadline. "The piece that they have that they may be willing to move is Kentavious Caldwell-Pope," Windhorst said. "The piece that teams want is Talen Horton-Tucker, who's a restricted free agent at the end of the year."
ShowtimeForum: "If KCP doesn't want to be traded, he won't be traded. His contract sets him up to keep from being traded without his permission." @bergmangreg pscp.tv/ShowtimeForum/…
The one thing Hart said he was fairly certain of was that no one on the roster was untouchable with the exception of two players: LeBron James, the team’s lone All-Star, and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, who is represented by Klutch Sports, the same agency that represents James and Davis: “You’re going through it and you’re like ‘Alright, man.’ You had no idea. Like, really, it seemed like nobody was untouchable honestly, besides LeBron and KCP. That was the only untouchable pieces. Fortunately for me, my name wasn’t really thrown in there until the last day when basically everyone on the roster was allegedly getting traded. It was just a weird situation because you had no idea.”
Late Monday night, the Lakers changed their offer at the request of the Pelicans, two people said. The Lakers had agreed to send their entire young core of Lonzo Ball, Kyle Kuzma, Brandon Ingram, Josh Hart and Ivica Zubac to the Pelicans, as well as veteran guard Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, the people said. The Lakers were also winning to also send the Pelicans two first-round draft picks.
The Sun-Times confirmed a Monday report that the Bulls have been in contact with the Lakers about a Jabari Parker for Kentavious Caldwell-Pope deal, but Caldwell-Pope has no-trade rights and wasn’t sold on leaving L.A. According to a source, there have been a handful of calls about Parker in the last week, and momentum is building a bit on him being sent elsewhere.
The Lakers and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope had hoped to find a landing spot for the sixth-year guard before the NBA trade deadline on Thursday, but he has not been part of the discussions to acquire for Davis. Caldwell-Pope has veto power over any trade he might be involved in, and one person familiar with his situation who was not authorized to speak publicly said it is unlikely Caldwell-Pope will be traded before the deadline.
Brian Windhorst: “Caldwell-Pope is available and has been floated out there for some spots. One place that they have talked to, now I’m not saying this deal is going to get done, but one place they have talked to is Chicago for Jabari Parker. And the thing about this is Caldwell-Pope has to approve of a trade … I’m not sure that’s going to get done but that’s been discussed. The Bulls really like Caldwell-Pope … Jabari Parker could be a Laker within the next few days. Jabari is a polarizing player but he might be interesting on the Lakers.”
Will Guillory: Sources with @Shams Charania: In trade talks with the New Orleans Pelicans, the Los Angeles Lakers have not included two players: LeBron James and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope.
Shams Charania: Sources with The Athletic's Pelicans reporter @Will Guillory: One player the Lakers have not placed in discussions with Pelicans for Anthony Davis (besides LeBron James): Kentavious Caldwell-Pope.
Incidentally, Paul, who represents LeBron James as well, also represents Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, whom the Lakers signed to a one-year deal worth $12 million. According to sources unauthorized to speak publicly, Paul has been searching for a trade partner for the Lakers to move Caldwell-Pope in search of a better role for the 25-year-old guard. But Caldwell-Pope would have veto power over any trade and it’s unlikely he would approve a trade to New Orleans.
As reported earlier this month, Houston has expressed exploratory interest in Cleveland’s J.R. Smith, who has been sent home by the Cavaliers as they try to find a new home for him via trade. But the Lakers’ Kentavious Caldwell-Pope is said to be the Rockets’ top target in their search for help on the wing, with Smith somewhere further down the list.
The Houston Rockets are emerging as a suitor for Los Angeles Lakers guard Kentavious Caldwell-Pope in multi-team trade scenarios, such as with the Los Angeles Lakers and Phoenix Suns, league sources told The Athletic.
There is no deal imminent, league sources said, and Caldwell-Pope can remain a Laker. He becomes trade-eligible on Dec. 15. In this scenario, the teams involved would need to search for a fourth team to acquire Houston’s contract of Brandon Knight along with draft picks, sources said. Knight is under contract for $14.6 million this season and $15.6 million in 2019-20.
In desperate search for an upgrade at the wing, the Rockets are targeting Caldwell-Pope, league sources said. The Lakers have pursued Suns forward Trevor Ariza, along with several other contenders, according to league sources.
John Gambadoro: Suns have heard from no less than 8 teams interested in acquiring Trevor Ariza. Lakers are one of those teams but there is nothing close at this time. Suns not interested in KCP and a bench player.
The Los Angeles Lakers are engaged in talks trying to acquire Phoenix Sunsforward Trevor Ariza, league sources told ESPN. The teams have been working to reach an agreement with a third team that would take on Lakers guard Kentavious Caldwell-Pope as part of a potentially larger deal, league sources said.
The Suns want to land a playmaking guard and a draft asset as the price of unloading Ariza, sources said. Phoenix and Los Angeles have made progress in third-team scenarios, although no agreements are close and both teams remain active in multiple trade discussions throughout the league, sources said.
Caldwell-Pope has veto power on a trade, but the Lakers have shown a willingness to work with his agent, Rich Paul, if there's a deal that might increase his role and possibly get him signed to a deal this summer with a new team, league sources said. Caldwell-Pope is on a one-year, $12 million contract. No trade can be completed officially until Saturday, when players like Ariza, who were signed in summer free agency, become eligible to be traded.
But if the team encounters a rough patch between now and the trade deadline, they could look to shuffle the decks. Apparently one option they might have on the table, according to Kevin O’Connor while speaking on “The Ringer NBA Show,” could be to send Kentavious Caldwell-Pope to the Philadelphia 76ers, who are canvassing the league for shooters (emphasis mine): ”(The Sixers’) depth is depleted. They need to add shooting, I had in my article on Saturday that they still retain interest in Cavs wing Kyle Korver, I’ve since heard that Kentavious Caldwell-Pope on the Lakers is a guy that they could have eyes for, but even then, Korver is obviously one of the greatest shooters ever, KCP is an inconsistent shooter. I’m not sure how much he would solve their issues, but the point is that they need to find shooting.”
There’s also the possibility Los Angeles moves him before the trade deadline to a team that’s looking to make a playoff push, but that feels unlikely for a few reasons. To start, whichever team traded for Caldwell-Pope would only receive his non-Bird Rights. Long story short, that means they’d likely need cap space to re-sign him over the summer, as the exception only allows four year deals up to 120 percent of the previous season’s salary with a five percent annual increase. Crazier things have happened, but it’s highly unlikely Caldwell-Pope’s market value won’t be higher, strengthening the likelihood of him being a mid-season rental more than a long-term investment. He also has a 15 percent trade kicker.
Jason Jones: Around the league Drummond and KCP can still be had in the right deal, for say a Paul George which Detroit might like, Indy not so much
The Detroit Pistons are welcoming offers on two players previously thought off-limits -- former All-Star center Andre Drummond and swingman Kentavious Caldwell-Pope -- as Thursday's trade deadline nears, according to league sources. Sources told ESPN.com that the Pistons have not committed to trading either player but have also not discouraged offers from interested teams for the two most prized names on their roster.
Jake Fischer: Conferred with a team source: The Pistons are not shopping Kentavious Caldwell-Pope by any means, but indeed open to listening to offers.
Vincent Ellis: There has been a lot of interest from other teams in KCP. But he's a SVG favorite. #Pistons.
Stan Van Gundy has openly scoffed at the suggestion that Detroit is looking to trade away Reggie Jackson amid the disappointing Pistons' 18-23 struggles. Yet there's a growing impression around the league that, at the very least, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope has moved past Jackson onto Detroit's short list of untouchables alongside Andre Drummond.
September 26, 2021 | 12:48 pm EDT Update
Where do you feel you rank among the top point guards in the game? Ja Morant: Top 5. If you’re Top 5, who else is there with you? Ja Morant: Morant: Steph (Curry). I’m a big Chris Paul fan. I’d say Dame (Lillard) and (Russell) Westbrook. It’s tough. The point guard position is so loaded. Some guys have to get left out.
Your teammate, Jaren Jackson Jr., was the No. 2 breakout player, according to a poll of 15 NBA executives I did for HoopsHype. What do you expect from a healthy Jaren this season? Ja Morant: To me, personally, I think he’s No. 1 if he’s healthy. He’s been battling some injuries that set him back. A healthy Jaren is definitely the number one breakout player this season. He’s just a special talent that’s gifted. He’s 7-foot-1, can shoot the three, can put it on the floor, and can play inside. He does so much on the floor. As long as he stays healthy, which we need him to be, he’s definitely number one.
What do you think of Dillon Brooks as a defender and as a player overall for this team? Ja Morant: Dillon is an important piece to this team offensively and defensively. I’ve been saying a lot now that I feel like he doesn’t get the credit he deserves for his defense, especially against some of the top guys. Some of them probably won’t admit it, but I feel like most of the games when they struggled, Dillon was guarding them. Soon, that’ll come that he gets his respect for that. Offensively, how he’s able to score the ball from all three levels is big-time for us.
Speaking of locker rooms, what are the expectations in the locker room for the Grizzlies this season? Where do you guys think you can compete on what type of level? Ja Morant: I feel like we can compete with the top teams in this league. We all have that mindset, and this chip on our shoulder we go out and play with each and every night. Now, it’s continuing to buy in and keep gelling as a team and getting better with chemistry. Having more guys step up and talk who’ve been in the game for a while to help the young guys come along. Our goal this year is to continue to be better in all areas and better than we were last year.
Granted, all of that stuff is a lot easier to say in the offseason than it is to actually feel when a player is on the outside looking in. But while it could just be a bunch of PR-friendly cliches being spewed, this team also really could be that committed to winning. Ellington certainly thinks so, and during a recent appearance on BallIsLife’s “Noble and Roosh Show,” he also outlined a few other reasons he thinks guys will be all right with not playing as much as they have in the past: “I think we have one of the older rosters, so I think guys are able to be mature about that. We understand that everybody’s not going to be able to play 30 minutes a game, so there’s going to be sacrifice. There’s going to be sacrifices that need to be made, and I think that’s part of the understanding. “But also, understanding that with the older roster, guys aren’t going to be able to play. Guys aren’t going to play every single game. I think you’re going to see sometimes guys get rested and that’s where the ‘Next Man Up’ mentality comes into play.”
It’s why he also likes that the team made sure to add a few younger players as well: “I think it’s a great combination, man, of basketball IQ, championship experience, hunger with the guys wanting more. You got a mix of guys that haven’t won championships who are hungry for championships. You got some young guys in Kendrick Nunn, Malik Monk, THT, you got some young guys that are dogs. I think it’s a great mix of veterans and some mid guys and some young guys. I think the roster was constructed beautifully.”
Jonathan Isaac: Misrepresentation only allows for others to attack straw men, and not reason with the true ideas and heart of their fellow man. It helps no one! True journalism is dying! I believe it is your God given right to decide if taking the vaccine is right for you! Period! More to follow
September 26, 2021 | 6:15 am EDT Update
“The NBA should insist that all players and staff are vaccinated or remove them from the team,” NBA legend Kareem Abdul-Jabbar tells Rolling Stone. “There is no room for players who are willing to risk the health and lives of their teammates, the staff and the fans simply because they are unable to grasp the seriousness of the situation or do the necessary research. What I find especially disingenuous about the vaccine deniers is their arrogance at disbelieving immunology and other medical experts. Yet, if their child was sick or they themselves needed emergency medical treatment, how quickly would they do exactly what those same experts told them to do?”