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OutletPass
05-21-2003, 08:55 AM
Rumors: Changes coming for the Kings?
By Chad Ford
NBA Insider

The pain still hasn't worn off in Sacramento, after losing Game 7 to the Mavs last weekend. For years the Kings have been taking baby steps toward a title. Last year's seven-game Western Conference Finals series with the Lakers was supposed to be evidence that the team had finally arrived. But a plethora of injuries this season actually forced the Kings to take a step back. With ultra-aggressive owners the Maloof brothers, and one of the NBA's top executives, Geoff Petrie, at the helm, will the Kings shake things up again this summer?

"We can't panic," said Kings co-owner Joe Maloof told the Sacramento Bee. "But the whole season was a little weird, with all the injuries. There have to be adjustments, and I don't know what they are yet. Geoff (Petrie) will know what to do." Petrie is probably nowhere near ready to decide what has to happen in Sacramento this summer, but a few tidbits are trickling out here or there.

The Kings are hoping that either Keon Clark opts out of his contract this season or that they can trade him this summer if he decides to stay another year. Clark, who was once considered a top-notch hire, didn't pan out toward the end of the season. He was supposed to provide the team with another legit low-post option on offense, and shot blocking and rebounding on defense. He didn't do much of either.

It's unlikely that Clark will opt out. He didn't do enough to improve his value, but a trade may work for both sides. Several teams, including the Blazers (no surprise there), Knicks, 76ers, Sonics and Pacers have expressed interest. The Kings aren't going to get an all-star in return, but Clark does have some value. If Antonio McDyess gets a clean bill of health, a Clark-for-Kurt Thomas trade could make a lot of sense.

The team also has to decide what to about Jim Jackson and Hedo Turkoglu. Clearly, coach Rick Adelman favored Jackson this season. If the team decides to re-sign him this summer, it needs to move Turkoglu while he still has value. Turkoglu becomes a restricted free agent at the end of next season and has already been sending signals to the Kings that he wants out. The Pistons, Bulls, and Nuggets have all shown interest in Turkoglu. Both the Pistons, Nuggets and Bulls all have lottery picks they might be willing to part with (provided they're not in the top 3) in return for Turkoglu.

Either way the Kings' changes will probably be minor. Long term, they have to begin thinking about a replacement for Vlade Divac. He's 35 and, given his offseason work habits, won't last much longer. That's why grabbing a top pick and nabbing someone like Chris Kaman may make some sense.

Pippen to retire?

Is Scottie Pippen going to follow Michael Jordan into the old folks home? "I think I am going to quit playing, really," Blazer forward Scottie Pippen told the Portland Tribune. "It's just something I have been thinking seriously about. It might be better for me to walk away now than in a year or two."

Just a few weeks ago it sounded like Pippen would be one of the hottest names on the free agent market. The Lakers seemed like a lock to land Scottie. But Pippen says the grind of the NBA season may just be too much for him to bear.

"When you get older, it's a little tougher to get yourself into shape," he continued. "Most of my teammates are young, and they can flip it on in two weeks. As an older player, you play a lot of catch-up. It is a longer offseason. It has gotten harder for me to prepare my body and gear myself up mentally for the long grind . . . My decision about whether or not to play has to be made before any decision about where I want to play. I am going to take some time off right now. I will know I have made the decision if I am not preparing myself for next season. If I don't feel like picking it back up again, that will be it."

If Pippen decides to retire, don't expect him to disappear from basketball completely. Pippen has talked about working in the front office or on a coaching staff after he retires. He's even went as far as to suggest that he's the perfect candidate for the Blazers' open GM position. That may be pushing it a bit Scottie.

Wolves pondering what to do with Brandon

Now that's it's clear to everyone that Terrell Brandon is going to retire, the Wolves have an interesting dilemma on their hand. Do they attempt to trade Brandon this summer to a team looking to clear cap space? Brandon's $11.1 million salary will mostly be paid by insurance and will come off the cap in February. Or do they keep him on the roster, get a $4.5 million disabled player exception from the league and try to add talent that way.

Several teams looking for cap room, like the Heat, Hawks, Wizards and Raptors, might be willing to give away a decent player in return for some cap and luxury-tax relief.

The Wizards are looking to move Jerry Stackhouse and could package him along with Jahidi White for Brandon's contract. That move would put the Wizards about $18 million under the cap for 2004. The Raptors would consider offering Antonio Davis. The Heat have been looking to move Eddie Jones. And the Hawks would probably give the Wolves their choice of Glenn Robinson or Theo Ratliff.

But, according to the Minnesota Star Tribune, Wolves owner Glen Taylor is contemplating keeping Brandon, pocketing the savings when he comes off the books (removing Brandon's salary would put the Wolves below the luxury-tax threshold) and praying that Kevin Garnett doesn't hold it against him when it comes to start negotiating an extension.

Our guess is that KG wouldn't be amused.

Draft workouts

Jazz: GM Kevin O'Conner and director of player personnel Walt Perrin are in Italy and France this week checking out international prospects. O'Conner will also go to Yugoslavia this week to see a few more players.

Grizzlies: The team worked out Mario Austin, Will McDonald and Uche Nsonwu-Amadi on Monday. Arizona State's Tommy Smith, Virginia's Travis Watson, Maryland's Steve Blake and Marcus Hatten of St. John's worked out in Memphis on Tuesday.

Hawks: Ugonna Onyekwe of Pennsylvania, Ronald Dupree of LSU, Lavell Blanchard of Michigan and Prentiss Gates of the NAIA's Southern Polytechnic State University will work out in Atlanta today. Ohio's Brandon Hunter, Arizona State's Tommy Smith, Jerome Beasley of North Dakota and Florent Pietrus (Mickael's brother) of EB Pau-Orthez (France) will work out Friday. Detroit's Willie Green, Tony Bland of San Diego, New Mexico's Ruben Douglas and Notre Dame's Matt Carroll are set to work out on Monday

Celtics: PIT MVP Jerome Beasley worked out in Boston on Tuesday.

Nuggets: The team had Georgetown center Wesley Wilson, South Florida center Will McDonald, San Diego center Jason Keep, Maryland guard Drew Nicholas and Stanford guard Julius Barnes in to work out on Tuesday. Florent Pietrus, Miami forward James Jones, Utah forward Britton Johnsen, Indiana forward Jeff Newton, St. John's guard Marcus Hatten and Boston College guard Troy Bell are scheduled to work out today.

Bulls: On Thursday, the Bulls will bring in Marquette's Dwyane Wade, Duke's Dahntay Jones and BYU's Travis Hansen.

madape
05-21-2003, 09:35 AM
<< The Kings are hoping that either Keon Clark opts out of his contract this season or that they can trade him this summer if he decides to stay another year. Clark, who was once considered a top-notch hire, didn't pan out toward the end of the season. He was supposed to provide the team with another legit low-post option on offense, and shot blocking and rebounding on defense. He didn't do much of either.

It's unlikely that Clark will opt out. He didn't do enough to improve his value, but a trade may work for both sides. >>



I would like all the Clark crotch-sniffers to comment on this quote. Does anyone still want to claim this was the signing of the off-season? Are you still interested in seeing Clark in a Mavs uniform? If so, it looks like the Kings would be more than happy to give him to you. In fact, they may just get on thier knees, beg and plead for you to take him and his ridiculous contract off their hands.

madape
05-21-2003, 09:38 AM
You gotta love it.
Already in this post-season, the Mavericks' domination of their opponents has induced one GM firing, a self-proclaimed future dynasty to possibly blow up it's roster, and at least one hall of fame player to retire before his time. And we're only halfway through the playoffs!

MavsFanFinley
05-21-2003, 01:07 PM
Well, I wasn't a Clark crotch-sniffer, but I was hoping the Mavs would have signed him last off season.

Now, I hope we can get PJ Brown if Malone doesn't want the spot. And use our #1 pick to bring a big body along gradually.

mavsfanforever
05-21-2003, 07:18 PM
Get rid of Webber. he has always choked when time is right. I still cannot digest that TIMEOUT.

u2sarajevo
05-22-2003, 12:25 PM
<< I would like all the Clark crotch-sniffers to comment on this quote. Does anyone still want to claim this was the signing of the off-season? Are you still interested in seeing Clark in a Mavs uniform? If so, it looks like the Kings would be more than happy to give him to you. In fact, they may just get on thier knees, beg and plead for you to take him and his ridiculous contract off their hands. >>



I would trade Bradley straight up for Clark. i/expressions/face-icon-small-wink.gif

LRB
05-22-2003, 12:39 PM
<<

<< I would like all the Clark crotch-sniffers to comment on this quote. Does anyone still want to claim this was the signing of the off-season? Are you still interested in seeing Clark in a Mavs uniform? If so, it looks like the Kings would be more than happy to give him to you. In fact, they may just get on thier knees, beg and plead for you to take him and his ridiculous contract off their hands. >>



I would trade Bradley straight up for Clark. i/expressions/face-icon-small-wink.gif >>



I wouldn't trade a bucket of crap straight up for Keon Clarke unless they agreed to return the bucket.

sturm und drang
05-22-2003, 01:43 PM
For the amount he signed for this year, yes I'd still want him. We certainly could've used him last night, for example... With the money we didn't give him, we picked up... oh, that's right. No one. I would be way less enthusiastic about Keon had we actually done something with the meager money we had to work with.

Worst case scenario for the Kings is they get a sign-and-trade for someone like Kurt Thomas. He certainly wouldn't qualify as the answer to our prayers, but he sure is a lot better than the spares we ended up with. (Ahem, Popeye?)

OutletPass
05-22-2003, 02:08 PM
Ahem....Rig a Don't

LRB
05-22-2003, 02:56 PM
Saying Keon Clark is better than Popeye or Rig a Don't is like saying 3 day old Sh!t doesn't stink as bad as fresh Sh!t. While it may be true, it doesn't mean that the 3 day old Sh!t smells good.

OutletPass
05-23-2003, 10:52 AM
keon just absolutely disappeared in the playoffs against us, especially in the most critical games...just one of a hundred reasons why I don't want his silly ass here.

I'd love PJ...but just read that the Lakers are sniffing him up and down.

LRB
05-23-2003, 11:55 AM
I still like malone better than PJ, Zo, Keon &quot;Crap&quot; Clark, or any other big man available.

jayC
05-26-2003, 10:25 AM
I hope KG does hold it against them.

MFFL
05-26-2003, 04:55 PM
<< keon just absolutely disappeared in the playoffs against us, especially in the most critical games...just one of a hundred reasons why I don't want his silly ass here.

I'd love PJ...but just read that the Lakers are sniffing him up and down. >>



But will Buss spend the money? 4.5 mil for signing him, double for the luxury tax, and loses out on the league money for teams under the tax plateau. That's a lotta money.