Originally posted by Mayhem Since Jerry West is now the man in the Grizzlies organization, is Memphis an option for Shaq?
I loathe Shaquille O'Neal, but he may be what that team needs, as it is currently on the rise.
Oh man, the Grizz have been my team since moving to Memphis and I HATE Shaq, but it definitely would make them a contender. I even heard rumors they were going to trade Gasol although I think West said it was untrue, I wouldn't give up Gasol for just anybody but if can work a deal that will bring in Shaq then it's worth giving up Gasol and whoever else. Just don't trade Mike Miller.
Here are Chad Ford's thoughts on Shaq and where he might end up. I think I might kill myself (or give myself a papercut, at least) if he ends up in Portland.
Originally posted by Chad Ford @ ESPN.comSources claim the Lakers don't really want to trade Shaq but are willing to move him if they can get a young superstar plus cap relief for next summer in return. Four teams look like they could be possible trading partners for the Lakers.
Option 1: The Pacers aren't parting with Jermaine O'Neal. A combo of Al Harrington and Ron Artest might make the Lakers notice, but having to swallow the contracts of Scot Pollard and Austin Croshere as part of the deal make it less desirable. But would Donnie Walsh & Co. really be willing to break up the team for Shaq? And would the owners be willing to commit the extra $60 million to keep the big fella happy?
Option 2: The Grizzlies could combine Pau Gasol, Bonzi Wells, Bo Outlaw and Lorenzen Wright to create a package that would work a bit better for the Lakers. Wells and Outlaw come off the books next season, freeing up significant cap room. But this is a potential straight-up Gasol-for-Shaq deal. Is that enough value to get back for Shaq? The Grizzlies probably would be willing to do the extension. Jerry West has been searching for a dominant big man since he got to Memphis, and we all know that he has a great relationship with Shaq.
Option 3: The Blazers also could put together a package of Theo Ratliff, Damon Stoudamire, Zach Randolph and the No. 13 pick in the draft for Shaq. Stoudamire comes off the books next year, Randolph was the Most Improved Player of the Year at the four, and Ratliff is still one of the best shot-blockers in the league. Paul Allen wouldn't hesitate to spend the cash for Shaq. But if the Blazers give up this much for Shaq, will they have enough players around him to win a title?
Option 4: That leaves us with the Mavericks. Reports out of Dallas claim owner Mark Cuban would give up anyone on his roster, with the exception of Dirk Nowitzki, for Shaq. However, a source in Dallas told Insider over the weekend that the Mavericks absolutely would be willing to give up Nowitzki and Antoine Walker for O'Neal. The Mavs aren't going to win a championship without a real presence in the middle. No one else they have can command a decent big man back in a trade. This is Cuban's best chance to win a championship. Nowitzki is a high price to pay, but it's worth it. The Mavs would field a team that still had Steve Nash (they'd re-sign him for sure, to play with Shaq), Michael Finley, Josh Howard and Antawn Jamison. Put Shaq in the middle, and it's the best team in the NBA -- more formidable, in my mind, than the team the Lakers fielded this year. Even if Shaq only plays well for two more seasons, a real shot at a championship is worth the risk.
Would the Lakers bite on any of those options? The trade with Dallas makes the most sense by far. The Lakers add a young versatile All-Star forward to work with Kobe. They clear Walker's $14.5 million salary off the books next summer. Given that Gary Payton, Rick Fox and Derek Fisher also will be gone in a year, the Lakers would be looking at $10 million-plus to use in the 2005 free agent market. The Lakers have had zero trouble recruiting free agents in the past. With a core of Kobe and Nowitzki, the Lakers can salvage their team and their image. All of the other options leave the Lakers struggling for credibility.
It's a deal made in Mark Cuban heaven. Don't be shocked if Cuban and Buss pull the trigger.
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Originally posted by Roy.I think everybody hates Shaq until he's on their favorite team.
See also: T.O. and Eagles fans.
Actually I hate T.O. and I'm an Eagles fan.
I was wondering if Cuban would get into considering he A) doesn't seem to care how much money he spends b) needs someone big. I think that trade would be good for both. Nowitzki/Kobe/Walker is still a good nucleus (if they can get Kobe to stay) to compete. And if the Mavs gave up Nowitzki and Walker they'd still have Nash/Finley/Jamison/Shaq.
(edited by Quezzy on 21.6.04 1125) Lance's Response: