The hapless Hornets might be ready to deal their biggest bargaining chip writes the New Orleans Times-Picayune’s John Reid.
Baron Davis was once considered an untouchable member of the Hornets, even after he made a trade request through his agent before the start of the season.
But it appears now after a league-worst 2-27 start, the Hornets are at least listening to potential trade offers for their two-time All-Star.
The Hornets apparently listened to a proposed deal that would have sent Davis to the Memphis Grizzlies in exchange for point guard Jason Williams and forward Shane Battier. But Grizzlies president Jerry West told The Memphis Commercial Appeal on Monday the deal won’t happen because they don’t want to part with Battier, one of their top post players.
Hornets general manager Allan Bristow said he spoke to West, but declined to say if Davis was part of any proposed deal. Bristow said he has listened to trade offers from every general manager in the league, but declined to say if the team is shopping Davis, which has been rumored for the past month.
“It’s our job to talk,” Bristow said Tuesday. “You’ve got to listen, and I don’t think anybody draws the line on listening. He’s our point guard, he’s an All-Star and our franchise player, and you know that’s the way we look upon Baron.”
Besides the Grizzlies, Davis has been mentioned in possible deals involving the Los Angeles Clippers and Indiana Pacers.
The Hornets could be looking to dump Davis’ salary to get under the salary cap and have more money to pursue free agents this summer. After this season, Davis has four years remaining on his contract valued at approximately $58 million.
As you’ve probaby read elsewhere, Jim Jackson refused to report to New Orleans following his being traded from Houston in exchange for David Wesley. Considering Jackson’s professionalism in being sent all over the league earlier in his career, you can make your own judgement about what kind of statement this makes about working for George Shinn (or playing for Byron Scott).