Hot Shit College Student proposes “2007’s Balkman” as the alternate headline, whilst forwarding the following item from The Daily Herald’s Mike McGraw.
Chandler update: The official reason for DePaul™s Wilson Chandler skipping a workout with the Bulls this week was an ankle injury, not a shoulder injury, as was written here.
One league source suggested the reason Chandler has stopped working out for teams is he expects to be chosen by New York with the 23rd pick, which would be an eye-opener. Most projections have the 6-8 forward going in the second round.
Writes HSCS, “I’m officially declaring the Knicks the winners in the Eddy Curry trade, and not because Curry hasn’t had a heart attack on the court. Zeke just has no interest in selecting a player in the first round.”
In the event Kobe has officially griped his way out of LA, the Knicks’ Stephon Marbury would like it to be known he’s “not opposed” to Bryant joining the Knicks. Though in Steph’s defense, he might not have offered his blessings to a mooted deal had the New York Post’s Marc Berman not asked him.
While the Post’s Peter Vescey complains “other than Dirk Nowitzki, nobody has gotten less flattering press following their teams’ playoff ouster than Shawn Marion,” (“you can’t convince me the Suns will be better without him, I don’t care whom they swap him for,”), the Globe’s Peter May explains precisely why the Matrix is the subject of so many trade rumors.
Two reasons: He’s good and the Suns need to slash payroll unless owner Robert Sarver enjoys writing luxury tax checks made out to David Stern. The Suns are on the books for roughly $77 million in salaries next year, and that figures to be well above the tax threshold (which was $65 million this year). Marion is down to earn $16.44 million next season and $17.18 million in 2008-09. But even by trading Marion, the Suns still will have to take back most of that $16.44 million (unless he’s dealt to a team with a lot of cap room, like Charlotte or possibly Orlando). The bigger concern is that the Suns are down to pay more than $21 million next season to Boris Diaw ($9 million), Kurt Thomas ($8.09 million), and, ahem, Marcus Banks ($3.99 million). The signing of Banks (a totally unnecessary and foolish $21 million over five years) and the re-signing of Diaw (from $1.8 million to an is-he-really-worth-it $45 million over five years) hurt the Suns more than the money due Marion, who has some cachet.