NBA PM: Magic Suspend Howard Talks
The Orlando Magic have suspended trade talks for superstar Dwight Howard.
On Wednesday afternoon, Magic general manager Rob Hennigan contacted Howard and told him that the team has decided to shut down trade talks and shift their focus to the team’s head coaching search, according to sources close to the situation.
After exhausting all of their options and discussing a number of trade scenarios, Orlando has decided to hold off on moving Howard.
“We tried,” Hennigan told Howard during their conversation, according to sources.
Hennigan denied that the team has suspended talks, but did acknowledge that he spoke to Howard on Wednesday afternoon and that there’s no timetable for the team to make a move.
“There’s no arbitrary deadline,” Hennigan said. “We’ll continue to look at doing something, if that something is in the best interest of our organization. That’s what I’ve said from day one.”
In recent days, the Magic were in contact with several teams including the Brooklyn Nets, Los Angeles Lakers, Houston Rockets and Atlanta Hawks. The front office wasn’t pleased with any of the offers on the table and will continue to weigh their options. Rather than rushing to make a move, Hennigan and the Magic will take a step back and reassess the situation later this offseason.
The Magic and Nets spent the last several days discussing potential trades, even involving third and fourth teams to facilitate a deal. However, the talks broke down. Hennigan described the talks with Brooklyn as being “in a stationary position.”
“As currently constructed, there’s not much there,” Hennigan said of trade talks with the Nets. “I’m not sure there’s much more to discuss.”
The team will now look to hire a new head coach, with Lindsey Hunter, Mike Malone, Brian Shaw, Jacque Vaughn and Jeff Hornacek emerging as candidates, according to sources. The Magic have already conducted several interviews and Hennigan acknowledged that they hope to hire a head coach soon.
Howard is upset that the Magic have suspended trade talks, according to sources close to the center. Up until speaking with Hennigan on Wednesday afternoon, Howard remained hopeful that he would be traded to Brooklyn.
Now, his future is still up in the air and the soap opera in Orlando continues on.
Bulls Officially Waive Watson, Brewer: The Chicago Bulls officially waived C.J. Watson and Ronnie Brewer on Tuesday evening, according to sources close to the situation.
Both players had partially guaranteed contracts that the team decided not to pick up for the 2012-13 season. Watson was owed $3.2 million for next season and Brewer was owed $4.37 million.
Now, after being waived, both Watson and Brewer can be claimed off of waivers by an under-the-cap team. If they clear waivers, the two guards will become unrestricted free agents. Chicago tried to deal both players rather than waiving them, but they couldn’t find a trade partner before Tuesday’s deadline.
A number of teams have already contacted Watson’s camp. Several teams made their interest known in the 28-year-old shortly after Chicago decided to sign Kirk Hinrich over the weekend. Last season, Watson started 25 games for the Bulls, averaging 11.3 points and 4.6 assists. Watson may be claimed off of waivers. If he’s not, he’ll have a long list of potential suitors when he becomes a free agent.
Brewer has also drawn interest from several teams, according to sources. The 27-year-old displayed his versatility last season, starting games at guard and forward when Richard Hamilton and Luol Deng were sidelined. In 43 games as a starter with the Bulls, Brewer averaged 7.5 points, 3.9 rebounds and 1.2 steals. If Brewer isn’t claimed off of waivers, a number of contenders will be looking to sign him since he can play multiple positions and defend the perimeter.
The Bulls have to make a decision on Kyle Korver and the final year of his contract by July 15. The Bulls have shopped Korver in recent days, with the Minnesota Timberwolves and Atlanta Hawks mentioned as potential suitors. Korver is owed $5,000,000 for next season if his contract is guaranteed.
Daye Playing Well in Orlando: Austin Daye is playing in the Orlando Summer League to show the Detroit Pistons how much he has improved and to establish himself as rotation player. Through two games, Daye has been extremely impressive. In his second game, Daye had 24 points and was the most impressive player on the court for Detroit. Daye missed just two shots all afternoon, going 8-10 from the field, 3-3 from beyond the arc and 5-5 from the charity stripe. HOOPSWORLD’s Steve Kyler caught up with Daye to discuss his Summer League experience: