Salt City Hoops » Trades http://saltcityhoops.com The ESPN TrueHoop Utah Jazz Site Thu, 18 Sep 2014 17:52:29 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.0 The ESPN TrueHoop Utah Jazz Site Salt City Hoops no The ESPN TrueHoop Utah Jazz Site Salt City Hoops » Trades http://saltcityhoops.com/wp-content/plugins/powerpress/rss_default.jpg http://saltcityhoops.com/category/trades-2/ Jazz Trade John Lucas III, Malcolm Thomas, and Erik Murphy for Carrick Felix, 2nd-Round Pick, and $1 Million http://saltcityhoops.com/jazz-trade-john-lucas-iii-malcolm-thomas-and-erik-murphy-for-carrick-felix-2nd-round-pick-and-1-million/ http://saltcityhoops.com/jazz-trade-john-lucas-iii-malcolm-thomas-and-erik-murphy-for-carrick-felix-2nd-round-pick-and-1-million/#comments Wed, 23 Jul 2014 01:04:30 +0000 http://saltcityhoops.com/?p=12332 Author information
Andy Larsen
Andy Larsen
Andy Larsen is the Managing Editor of Salt City Hoops, the ESPN TrueHoop affiliate for the Utah Jazz. He also hosts a radio show and podcast every week on ESPN700 AM in Salt Lake City.
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(Photo by David Liam Kyle/NBAE via Getty Images)

The Utah Jazz have acquired Carrick Felix, a 2nd round pick, and $1 million in return for the non-guaranteed contracts of John Lucas III, Malcolm Thomas and Erik Murphy. Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports was the first to report the trade.

From the Jazz’s perspective, there’s little-to-no cost in this trade. The best asset traded away here is Malcolm Thomas, who has impressed enough at the D-League and Summer League levels to show that he deserves NBA minutes at this point in his career. That being said, those minutes were going to be hard to find on the Jazz’s PF-heavy roster: Favors, Kanter, Novak, Booker, and Evans can all play the position, and all would presumably be ahead of Thomas on the preliminary depth chart. Thomas can help an NBA team, and could even help a contender, but unfortunately, he doesn’t look like a great fit in Cleveland, given this:

Hopefully Thomas does find his way with an NBA team.

John Lucas III is the biggest name in the trade, after he played 591 minutes for the Jazz last season. Lucas had actually played far more effectively (and in more minutes) in his time with Toronto and Chicago in his previous two seasons, with a PER of 16.3 and 12.8 respectively, but disappointed with Utah to the tune of a 5.2 PER. Lucas was a beloved presence in the locker room, but clearly couldn’t be counted on to contribute during his minutes played. In fact, his early season performance was so disappointing that the team first re-signed an old Jamaal Tinsley to offset many of his minutes, then when that didn’t work out, found Diante Garrett in the season’s first D-League call-up. Lucas’s contract is unguaranteed, and at $1.6 million, it would be surprising to see him not cut by one team or another before January. That being said, it’s probably somewhat worthwhile for some team to find out whether his true current talent level is closer to his 2011-13 showing or his 2013-14 performance.

Erik Murphy was supposed to be a prototypical stretch 4, but both his shot release and his defensive movement have been slow enough at the NBA level to really disqualify him from NBA minutes. He’s disappointed once again at this year’s Las Vegas Summer League, and has $100,000 coming to him coming to him if he isn’t cut by August 1st. In my opinion, the only way he makes it past that deadline is if Cleveland is on the verge of a trade that would necessitate his contract.

The Jazz would have likely released all three of these guys anyway, due to either high competition (Thomas) or simply to save money and roster spots (Murphy, Lucas). That doesn’t mean they aren’t assets, but Utah probably used those assets to the best of their ability by sending them to a team that’s desperately seeking those non-guaranteed deals to use in a superstar-level trade.

It’s instructive that Ian Clark wasn’t included: while the Cavaliers could have used his contract, it appears that the Jazz would like to keep it, despite that his contract will become fully guaranteed by August 1st. While this might make him less valuable to the Cavs, Clark is also attending the Jazz’s state-of-Utah Junior Jazz tour after that date (August 11-14). It would seem cruel to cut Clark, then expect him to tour rural Utah for a week, though DeMarre Carroll traveled Utah last summer without a contract. The Jazz are thin on the wings, and Clark currently stands as only 4th SG/SF on the roster.

Carrick Felix would be the 5th wing, and there are significant indications that the Jazz like him. Perhaps the biggest public sign is Jazz radio play-by-play man David Locke’s article about Felix and the trade:

Felix is going to [be] a part of the Utah Jazz…. The Jazz scouts have had an eye on Felix and like his defensive mindset, his ability to rebound and believe he can shoot the three.  He is not an offensive playmaker with the ball in his hands.  This is an opportunity for the Jazz to add a player they like and believe has a chance to develop into a rotational piece.

With his role with the team, Locke often has insider-type knowledge on the thinking of the Jazz; on this issue, this is even further evidenced by that Locke’s 836-word article was posted just 12 minutes after Wojnarowski broke the news. Expect Carrick to stay on the team, for all of the reasons Locke mentioned.

At the NBA level, Carrick Felix is probably most likely to make it as a defensive specialist who’s capable of not embarrassing himself offensively. Personally, I think of him as most similar to Quinton Ross, another 6’6” guard who could defend extremely well and rebound really well, but was extremely poor with the ball in his hands. Ross couldn’t ever do enough offensively to stay on the floor or remain in the league, so it will be up to Felix to show more on that side of the ball than Ross did.

The 2015 2nd round pick the Jazz receive is likely Cleveland’s own. This is just a guess, but an educated one, as Cleveland only has rights to one other 2015 2nd round pick, Boston’s, and it is top-55 protected. While they could trade that pick instead, it would be meaningless to do so. Given that Cleveland recently signed a really good player, and will likely use these assets to acquire another really good one, the 2nd round pick isn’t likely to be excellent. The $1 million the Jazz receive is nice enough, and gives the Jazz free reign to repeat this process by taking a glance at another cheap prospect.

Overall, the Jazz spent roughly $2.2 million on Lucas, Thomas, and Murphy’s contracts over the last season, and got a goodish prospect and a bad 2nd round pick in return. Given the rapidly approaching decision date on two of the non-guaranteed prospects, it was a small chance for the Jazz to get something long-term for an immediately expiring asset. It’s not very impressive value, but it does continue the Jazz’s plan of using their cap space and money now to receive assets for the future.

Author information

Andy Larsen
Andy Larsen
Andy Larsen is the Managing Editor of Salt City Hoops, the ESPN TrueHoop affiliate for the Utah Jazz. He also hosts a radio show and podcast every week on ESPN700 AM in Salt Lake City.
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SCH Mailbag: Cap & Trade Questions http://saltcityhoops.com/sch-mailbag-cap-trade-questions/ http://saltcityhoops.com/sch-mailbag-cap-trade-questions/#comments Thu, 26 Jun 2014 15:30:55 +0000 http://saltcityhoops.com/?p=12027 Author information
Dan Clayton
Dan Clayton
Dan covered Utah Jazz basketball for more than 10 years, including as a radio analyst for the team’s Spanish-language broadcasts from 2010 to 2014. He now lives and works in New York City where his hobbies include complaining about League Pass, finding good doughnut shops and dishing out assists for the Thoreau It Down team in the Word Bookstore basketball league.
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If Favors is really on the block, how would that work? Submit your cap questions here. (Photo by Melissa Majchrzak/NBAE via Getty Images)

If Favors is really on the block, how would that work? (Photo by Melissa Majchrzak/NBAE via Getty Images)

You asked. We answer.

As we prime for what should be a wild last few hours leading up the NBA Draft and the start to an equally wild free agency period, we asked you what questions you had about the collectively bargained rules that govern transactions between teams and players. We got some great questions submitted here at SCH and on Twitter, and we’re ready to dive in.

“With the talk about Favors and #5 for #1, I was wondering about salary matching requirements? Do draft picks nullify salary matching requirements, or are the requirements just not strictly enforced in the offseason?” -Andrew

We’ll know before the sun sets again whether the Favors-Cavs rumor has legs, but in the meantime, Andrew asks an important question about salary rules as they pertain to draft trades.

Short answer, Andrew: yes, the rules you’re referring to always apply. However, they only apply to teams over the salary cap who wish to add salary. A traded player exception is the mechanism that a team would use to further exceed the cap to add salary, provided that the incoming salary is within a certain percentage of the players they’re sending out. But you don’t need a TPE to acquire a player if you have enough salary cap space to acquire him outright.

The Jazz, on draft night, don’t have the salary cap space to acquire additional salary outside the TPE range, and neither does Cleveland, so a trade between those teams before June 30 would have to include roughly matching salaries. But there’s an easy way around that, and it’s used frequently for draft trades. Both Utah and Cleveland have the ability to create cap space beginning on July 1, so they can verbally agree to a deal on draft day, but wait to make it official until after the July moratorium. That way, they don’t have to worry about the math because they’ll both have room.

The Thunder did this in 2010 when they needed to wait until after the moratorium to have room to absorb Morris Peterson in exchange for the 11th pick. So it’s a fairly common mechanism for teams who will have cap space next week. For all other teams, “salary matching” — or using a TPE to add salary in a trade — is still in effect if they are over the cap and adding salary.

Now, whether you think the Jazz should trade Favors to get the #1 is another matter entirely. And while we’re on the topic of Favors…

“How about answering how the Poison Pill affects Derrick Favors trades on draft night?” -Peter

If you know Peter, you know that he knows these answers, so he’s clearly testing me. Let’s see how I do.

This is another rule that applies specifically to a player who has signed an extension on the back of a rookie contract but whose extension hasn’t yet taken effect. That means Favors, IF he is officially traded before July 1. Basically, the outgoing team has to use a different number in TPE calculations than the receiving team, which makes salary matching harder.

The receiving team would have to calculate the trade on their end using the average of Favors’ 2013-14 salary and all four years of the extension (reported at around $48M plus incentives), so somewhere around $11 million. That means that to acquire him using a TPE, that team would have to send out about $7.3M in salary. That’s more than Jarrett Jack makes, so the Cavs would have to add salary to their end, something they may not be willing to do. The Jazz, meanwhile, have to treat his salary at his current $6M, which means the most they can take back is about $9.1M. This provision narrows the window for finding a mutually acceptable deal, and makes it harder to deal players with pending extensions.

But like on the last question, there’s a way around it. Again, the Jazz can simply agree to a deal but wait to carry it out until July. At that point, both teams have cap space to facilitate the trade, and Favors no longer qualifies as a Poison Pill player since his extension will have kicked in.

“What is a good amount for Gordon Hayward in your opinion? And what do you think he will get? Do the Jazz match that offer?” -@ghostofLHM

Great question. Andy Larsen and I broke down the financial aspect a bit last fall after Hayward and the Jazz failed to reach an agreement. It sounds like Hayward’s camp was asking for something less than the max — so probably in the high 50s for a four-year deal. The noise at the time indicated that the Jazz were offering something in the mid to high 40s. So you can see about where the middle ground lies.

Obviously there’s more sample to draw from since those negotiations, and that was a bit of a mixed result. Hayward probably validated some fears that he’s not a #1 option, but played well enough in overall terms that he’s on some teams’ radars. However, the Jazz haven’t made any indication that they will decline to match, and that will deter some suitors who don’t want a cap hold hanging around their necks for 72 hours when they could be approaching other free agents.

I think the final deal for Gordon winds up no lower than that natural compromise they couldn’t settle into last fall: low to mid 50s. That’s the low end. I wouldn’t be surprised if he got an offer closer to 60M, either.

And yes, I think the Jazz match. The Jazz can also now offer a fifth year without using up their Designated Player distinction, so they might try to get him to compromise on dollars to get the extra year, but in that case Hayward would probably want an Early Termination Option so that he could opt out and get paid if he played above his contract figure.

“Another question related to Hayward. I know the Jazz can’t match and then trade, but could they do a sign and trade with him?” -@shottyjon

Yes, the Jazz can work with Hayward’s agent and an interested team to orchestrate a sign-and-trade. The incentive for Hayward to do this is he can choose his destiny and not sweat the “will they match” question for 72 hours. For the Jazz, they’d get assets back instead of letting Hayward walk for nothing. And the advantage to the other team is that it guarantees they get their guy, versus being at the Jazz’s mercy.

Also, technically the Jazz can match Hayward’s contract and then trade him beginning December 15, but they need his consent on any trade for one year after matching.

But again, I think the most likely outcome of all this is Hayward sticking in Utah long term.

“How effective is the CBA at really limiting teams’ salaries? For instance, with Anthony and James both opting out of their contracts, what is stopping a team like the Nets or Mavs from keeping their current payroll the way it is, while simultaneously offering each of those men $50 million a year?” -musiccynic

The CBA sets maximum salaries for each player, as well as a salary cap construct that makes it very difficult to continue adding salary once your team salary exceeds a certain level. In LeBron and Melo’s case, the maximum any team can offer them would be a deal starting at 35% of the new salary cap, or 105% of their last season salary, whichever is greater. And the only teams that can offer that much are their current teams or anybody who has enough salary cap room to accommodate that amount. So there are definitely controls in place that keep deep-pocketed teams from saying, “I don’t care what it costs, go get that guy.” If a team is caught finding other ways to compensate a player, there are serious penalties. The league doesn’t mess around with that stuff.

“What happened to Raul Neto? The Jazz supposedly “picked” him last year. Do they still have some rights to him? If so, how does that work with him having a contract with a professional team overseas for the last year? Does Neto factor into what the Jazz are building this year?” -musiccynic

The Jazz still hold the player right to Neto, as well as Ante Tomic. Whenever Neto and Tomic decide to come over, the Jazz have exclusive NBA rights to sign them, unless they have traded or waived those rights by then.

Neto is in Salt Lake City right now, ostensibly to discuss his future plans with Jazz brass and maybe to participate in summer training camp. Tomic had a strong season in Europe, and the Jazz sound like they’re at a “now-or-never” juncture with the skilled big man from Croatia. So to answer your question, yes, they could very well factor into Utah’s plans, either as players or as assets that can be dealt.

“Are teams going to trade the players they selected post draft? For example, we come to Cleveland a few days after the draft and offer Burks, Embiid, and Favors for Andrew Wiggins and Jarrett Jack? Would Cleveland be less likely to do the trade, just because it’s after the draft?” -Mewko

It’s possible, sure. This used to be harder because first round picks were counted in trades at their slotted salary amount, so it was hard to move picks after the draft because you had to worry about matching salaries. But now, unsigned picks now count as $0 salary in trades. This makes it a lot easier to do the type of deal you’re suggesting as long as a pick is unsigned. Once they’re signed, they cannot be traded for 30 days, at which point they count for whatever their salary is on the new contract.

But to your last point, you’re right that it’s a little awkward to draft a guy, excite your fans, hold a press conference, and then trade him. It occasionally happens with later picks. Last season, the Blazers hadn’t signed draft pick Jeff Withey, so they were able to trade him to New Orleans. But it’s a lot less common. Most teams don’t keep the store open indefinitely after the draft, especially with a top pick.

“I am intrigued by the Asik and Lins deal. They basically have massive deferred compensation in the last year. Does the CBA really not allow Houston to pay the deferred compensation they are only limited to the $3.3 M in cash? If so, how on earth can Houston trade them?” -@shottyjon

Jon wins the clairvoyance award, because as I was sitting down with this batch of questions, Asik was dealt to New Orleans for a future pick and cash.

For reasons we won’t go into, Asik and Lin’s deals were structure in an odd way when Houston signed them as restricted free agents. The result is that each guy will count for $8.37M on the team’s cap sheet, but they actually stand to get paid close to $15M this year.

As Jon points out, that makes them incredibly hard to trade, because a team has to have the cap room (or matching salary) to get the $8.37M on their books, but more importantly, you have to find someone willing to actually shell out $15M in cash for guys who are fringe starters. Houston can help offset that, but only the tune of $3.2M in total cash for trades through June 30, and then $3.3M total for July 1 through next June 30.

So it’s difficult, but obviously doable since the Asik deal just went through. It’s being reported that Houston used about half of the $3.2M limit for this cap year to get New Orleans to take Asik off their hands. They could use the other half to unload Lin, or they could wait until that cash limit resets and they can pay someone $3.3M to absorb the remaining commitment to Lin. It could be an interesting way for the Jazz to get an asset since it won’t harm Utah’s cap situation much, but I doubt they have a real strong desire for Lin as a player.

“Is there an all-encompassing source available online where one can learn the ins and out of all these rules?” -musiccynic

A good chance for me to rep my favorite sources. Most of what I know about these cap rules is stuff I’ve learned from www.cbafaq.com, from Larry Coon’s online chats and articles, from other materials at ESPN.com, and from years of tinkering myself. For anyone interested in learning the ins and outs of the CBA, www.cbafaq.com is an irreplaceable resource, but this is complicated stuff, so you’ll occasionally botch something. The best way to learn is to mess around and learn as you go. People like @Peter_J_Novak, @nsanba and @k_clayt still keep me honest all the time by pointing out when I missed an obscure clause that changes an answer.

Author information

Dan Clayton
Dan Clayton
Dan covered Utah Jazz basketball for more than 10 years, including as a radio analyst for the team’s Spanish-language broadcasts from 2010 to 2014. He now lives and works in New York City where his hobbies include complaining about League Pass, finding good doughnut shops and dishing out assists for the Thoreau It Down team in the Word Bookstore basketball league.
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SCH Mailbag: Your Questions Needed http://saltcityhoops.com/sch-mailbag-your-questions-needed/ http://saltcityhoops.com/sch-mailbag-your-questions-needed/#comments Tue, 24 Jun 2014 00:49:15 +0000 http://saltcityhoops.com/?p=11993 Author information
Dan Clayton
Dan Clayton
Dan covered Utah Jazz basketball for more than 10 years, including as a radio analyst for the team’s Spanish-language broadcasts from 2010 to 2014. He now lives and works in New York City where his hobbies include complaining about League Pass, finding good doughnut shops and dishing out assists for the Thoreau It Down team in the Word Bookstore basketball league.
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If Favors is really on the block, how would that work? Submit your cap questions here. (Photo by Melissa Majchrzak/NBAE via Getty Images)

If Favors is really on the block, how would that work? Submit your cap questions here. (Photo by Melissa Majchrzak/NBAE via Getty Images)

It’s time to get down to business.

The next two to three weeks will be among the most interesting of the year for NBA fans, particularly those of rebuilding team. There is already a persistent hum of rumors involving the Jazz, and the volume will only increase leading up to the draft and free agency. It can also get increasingly complex, with a complicated set of rules governing every potential transaction. But don’t worry; we’ve got you covered.

This week we’ll be reaching into the SCH Mailbag to answer your questions about the salary and trade rules that will dictate what the Jazz do over the coming weeks as they build their team and their future. We want to know what Jazz-related questions you have about cap space, draft-day trades, post-draft trades, cap holds, free agency, restricted free agency, and any other CBA-related issues.

Submit your question in the comments below, or Tweet/DM @danclayt0n (that’s a zero). I’ll grab as many as possible and attach answers well before the Draft on Thursday so you know what the options are before Adam Silver takes the podium.

And…go!

Author information

Dan Clayton
Dan Clayton
Dan covered Utah Jazz basketball for more than 10 years, including as a radio analyst for the team’s Spanish-language broadcasts from 2010 to 2014. He now lives and works in New York City where his hobbies include complaining about League Pass, finding good doughnut shops and dishing out assists for the Thoreau It Down team in the Word Bookstore basketball league.
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Dennis Lindsey: “Nothing Sacred” in Jazz’s Search for Star http://saltcityhoops.com/dennis-lindsey-nothing-sacred-in-jazz-quest-to-move-up/ http://saltcityhoops.com/dennis-lindsey-nothing-sacred-in-jazz-quest-to-move-up/#comments Thu, 22 May 2014 21:00:17 +0000 http://saltcityhoops.com/?p=11673 Author information
Dan Clayton
Dan Clayton
Dan covered Utah Jazz basketball for more than 10 years, including as a radio analyst for the team’s Spanish-language broadcasts from 2010 to 2014. He now lives and works in New York City where his hobbies include complaining about League Pass, finding good doughnut shops and dishing out assists for the Thoreau It Down team in the Word Bookstore basketball league.
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If the Jazz want a top prospect like Andrew Wiggins, they'll have to get creative. (Getty Images)

If the Jazz want a top prospect like Andrew Wiggins, they’ll have to get creative. (Getty Images)

The fifth pick in an NBA draft is normally a huge asset, but if was ever OK to feel a little dejected about occupying that spot, it’s this year.

It’s supposedly a 4-man draft at the top, with potential franchise stars Andrew Wiggins, Jabari Parker, Joel Embiid and Dante Exum likely to be off the board right when Utah’s draft clock starts.

This is particularly disconcerting to the Jazz, who, as GM Dennis Lindsey discussed with us on Tuesday, came into this off-season hoping to land a franchise-type player. As Lindsey told SCH the other night, “There’s nothing sacred.” Translation: everything’s negotiable relative to finding that type of guy.

Which has many fans wondering if there’s opportunity to move up. Consider this your guide to the trade-up landscape. Let’s take a look at what might be involved and render a verdict on whether or not there’s actual hope to do so.

The market

The trade-up discussion doesn’t go anywhere unless someone sitting above the Jazz is willing to talk. Since that’s a pretty finite list, let’s start there.

Reports out of Cleveland suggest the Cavs would be willing to discuss trading the #1 overall pick, but only for a “bona fide All-Star.” Even if we take the rumor at face value, the Jazz clearly don’t have an All-Star to offer. The closest thing that they have that is actually tradable leading up to the draft is Derrick Favors. Not sure if Favors + 5 + whatever else gets it done if there are teams on the line with All-Star offers.

There’s absolutely no noise about the Bucks willingness to trade #2, and it’s hard to imagine them coming to terms with moving all the way back to #5 when they were initially in line for the top pick. They do have needs all over the board, and they have a bad contract or two, but so far it sounds like they’re zeroing in on the talent at #2, with Parker and Exum in their sights.

The Sixers tanked so exquisitely and deliberately to get inside the top 3 that I can’t imagine they’d trade #3. They don’t really have bad salary, they don’t need cap help, and they already have multiple picks in the top 10.

Orlando is marginally interesting, only because a fair amount of noise suggests they’re seriously considering Marcus Smart, who they could certainly grab with the #5 pick if they wanted to score an extra asset and get their guy all at the same time. However, they also already own a second lottery pick and they possess a fairly clean salary sheet.

Remember, not everybody’s draft board looks like the Jazz’s, and not every team has the same priorities. But with these four teams in particular, it will be tough to get them to sit down at the negotiating table.

The history

History only matters as much as the parties decide to let it influence negotiations. To wit, there was no historical precedent that would suggest swapping 14 & 21 for the ninth pick (Trey Burke) should have been possible, but that happened.

Still, past trades will be many front offices’ point of reference for how to start a conversation about what a particular move is worth. Here are 10 years’ worth of trades involving first round picks. These are only the trades that were carried out immediately around the draft (as trades involving picks at other times of the year have their own separate economics and uncertainties), and in this table the team that moved up or in is listed first.

Draft trades 2004-2013

There are a few outliers there that might encourage you, but don’t buy that snake oil. Teams generally aren’t able to get #7 for cash and a 2nd like Chicago did with Deng, so that’s the exception, not the rule.

The general trend here is that teams get picks in the 20s fairly often, but a top 10 pick usually requires at least two of the following three pieces: 1) multiple picks, 2) starter-caliber players (and in some cases All-stars), and 3) the ability to bury bad salary in your backyard. The Jazz are in a position to offer all three of those things, and it sounds like they’re willing.

The other trend to point out is that there have only been four occasions in 10 years when a pick better than the Jazz’s current 5th was moved. So just be aware of what you’re asking. It’s possible, and the Jazz certainly have the assets and motivation. But you can’t sit back and say, “The Jazz are good at trading up, I’m sure they’ll find a way to get ___.” This is a tough area to get something done.

Who/what can’t be traded

The ping pong balls were still settling when Jazz fans started putting Gordon Hayward into trade packages to get back into the top 4 Let me save you the time: stop building Hayward trade scenarios.

Hayward, like all pending free agents, cannot be included in draft-day trades. And contrary to what people are piecing together on Twitter, he also can’t be involve in any Sign & Trade discussions that take place on Draft Day because it’s illegal for the Jazz or any other team to negotiate with Hayward until July 1, long after the draft has fully congealed.

What the Jazz could do, in theory, is start new S&T discussions involving Hayward on July 1, and if teams want to bring their unsigned picks into the negotiation, they can. But no team is going to make even a tentative agreement on June 26 involving a top 4 pick when they have no idea if Hayward is going to want to play there, much less for the right amount of money. So this is a non-starter.

A few have challenged that assessment based on the 2013 Tyreke Evans trade. That was a completely different scenario. While that trade technically involved a 2013 pick (the unsigned Jeff Withey), that did not begin as anything remotely resembling a draft day trade. Those S&T negotiations were born out of the Pellies’ attempt to court Evans in free agency and the Kings’ desire to get something in return for letting him go. Withey hadn’t been signed yet (the Pellies wanted to keep their options open for just this kind of scenario), so as the talks matured, the former Jayhawk was eventually added in. Again, no team is going to make a handshake agreement on June 26 that’s still subject to all the variables associated with free agency negotiations.

By the way, same goes for Marvin Williams, Richard Jefferson and Brandon Rush, who can’t be part of any deal associated with the draft.

The other thing the Jazz technically can’t trade on draft night is their cap flexibility — because it doesn’t exist yet. The Jazz’s cap opens up in July, but there’s an easy way around this. Teams make verbal agreements all the time and then consummate once the new cap year has begun, because unlike the S&T scenario, there’s no third party that can mess up the deal-in-principle. This happens fairly often, like in 2007 when Portland needed to wait for their cap to clear before they could absorb James Jones in exchange for the 24th pick from Phoenix.

It’s unclear whether John Lucas III and Diante Garrett are on team option years or if they have contracts with no guarantee dates. If it’s the former, they can’t be traded until July 1, either. It sound, though, like Erik Murphy, Malcolm Thomas and Ian Clark don’t have option years, but rather contracts that can be terminated at some specific later date, so they are in play.

The assets

Having said that, here’s what the Jazz DO have available to trade on June 26:

  • #5
  • #23
  • #35
  • Any of Utah’s own future picks
  • 2017 unprotected 1st from GSW
  • 2016 & 2017 2nd rounders from GSW
  • 2018 2nd rounder from Den
  • Draft rights to Raul Neto and Ante Tomic
  • Favors
  • Enes Kanter
  • Alec Burks
  • Trey Burke
  • Rudy Gobert
  • Jeremy Evans
  • Murphy, Thomas and Clark, unless the rumored details of their 2014-15 contracts are wrong
  • Cap space that can be used in verbal agreements to be officially consummated after the July mortatorium

Competition for pick sales

Also remember that there are 28 other teams to compete with for each of those four spots. Even if the Jazz find a team willing to deal, understand the historical price and are willing to cough up the right assets to get a deal done, they still have to outbid any other potential suitors.

With that in mind, keep an eye on Boston, who owns #6 and #17, although they don’t have quite the stockpile of young talent the Jazz have. The Suns’ picks don’t have as much juice (14, 18, 27 and 50), but they have some intriguing pieces. The Timberwolves have Kevin Love and the 13th pick.

So, just remember: it’s not enough to be able to assemble a good trade package. You have to assemble one that’s better than what anybody else is offering.

The verdict

Trading into the top four is doable, but this particular time around it will be tough. That said, the Jazz made trades in 2005 and 2013 that history says they shouldn’t be able to pull off.

Like I said, watch Orlando, who may be operating with a draft board that looks different from other teams. Also, keep an eye on injuries and the workout performance. If Embiid’s back continues to worry people, or if someone like Smart, Noah Vonleh or Aaron Gordon starts to shine relative to the big four, then suddenly teams may be more open to picking up an asset in exchange for “settling” for one of those next-tier guys.

The Jazz could also make a two-step move to try to move up. Maybe 23 + a player + a cap dump could get that pick up into the teens, and then 5 + teens + another player might be sweet enough to compete with what other multiple-pick teams could offer.

Basically, explore everything. Every rumor about every team’s willingness to talk, negotiate, ideate, coax or cajole could matter to the overall market and to the Jazz’s asset position.

And if none of it works, then Utah will pick fifth in a supposed four-stud draft, and make the best of it.

Author information

Dan Clayton
Dan Clayton
Dan covered Utah Jazz basketball for more than 10 years, including as a radio analyst for the team’s Spanish-language broadcasts from 2010 to 2014. He now lives and works in New York City where his hobbies include complaining about League Pass, finding good doughnut shops and dishing out assists for the Thoreau It Down team in the Word Bookstore basketball league.
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Anatomy of a Deal: How the Warriors used the Jazz to sign Andre Iguodala http://saltcityhoops.com/anatomy-of-a-deal-how-the-warriors-used-the-jazz-to-sign-andre-iguodala/ http://saltcityhoops.com/anatomy-of-a-deal-how-the-warriors-used-the-jazz-to-sign-andre-iguodala/#comments Sat, 01 Mar 2014 17:50:52 +0000 http://saltcityhoops.com/?p=10592 Author information
Andy Larsen
Andy Larsen
Andy Larsen is the Managing Editor of Salt City Hoops, the ESPN TrueHoop affiliate for the Utah Jazz. He also hosts a radio show and podcast every week on ESPN700 AM in Salt Lake City.
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Some creative negotiation resulted in Jefferson becoming a Jazzman. (Photo by Melissa Majchrzak/NBAE via Getty Images)

Some creative negotiation resulted in Jefferson becoming a Jazzman. (Photo by Melissa Majchrzak/NBAE via Getty Images)

It sounds obvious: if you can get both sides to win in a negotiation, it’s much easier to get a deal done.

That was the basis of one of the ten tenets of negotiation in a panel entitled “The Science of a Deal” at this year’s Sloan Sports Analytics Conference, presented by Deepak Malhotra (professor at the Harvard Business School and author of “Negotiation Genius”). Shouldn’t the 30 NBA general managers be experts at this? After all, they’re shepherding some of the world’s most high-profile negotiations.

But, if Rockets GM Daryl Morey and Warriors GM Bob Myers are to be believed, most teams don’t negotiate that way. Instead, they assert that most GMs are looking for such a bargain that they’ll consistently and dramatically offer far less than a player is worth. Worse, some GMs will try the used-car salesman approach, and explain to a team’s GM what the needs of his own team are! It’s a tactic that, in the estimation of Morey and Myers, has never worked.

In Friday’s panel, Myers took the audience through one deal in particular that featured a multitude of moving parts: the Warriors acquisition of Andre Iguodala. The deal was so complicated and difficult that co-panelist Morey thought that there was “no way” that it could get done. But somehow, everything came together.

It all began when Warriors owner Joe Lacob wanted more success after Golden State’s run into the second round last season. He wanted to take the next step, and to the notoriously forceful Lacob, that meant acquiring another big-name player in free agency. The Warriors approached Dwight Howard, even meeting with him and his team in person, but Howard decided to go elsewhere.

Andre Iguodala, though, was more amenable. Iguodala liked what the Warriors were building, and could see himself as a long-term resident of the Bay Area. He instructed his agent, Rob Pelinka, to pursue the Golden State possibility.

The problem, though, is that the Warriors didn’t have any money under the salary cap. In fact, they were nearly $12 million over the cap, burdened by the expensive (but expiring) contracts of Richard Jefferson and Andris Biedrins. Despite this, Myers went into negotiations with Pelinka anyway, trying to find a salary that both Iguodala and the team could agree to. Interestingly, absent in this negotiation was what the Warriors could afford to pay, after all, they could pay nothing. Instead, it was a multi-day discussion of Iguodala’s hypothetical worth to the Warriors.

Eventually, and because both sides wanted Iguodala in Golden State, the sides agreed to a deal, a 4 year, $48 million contract. If the impossible somehow were to occur, if miracles were to happen, Golden State would need to move $24 million dollars off their cap immediately: $12 million to get down to the cap level, and another $12 million to fit Iguodala’s contract into.

Myers, the attempted superhero achieving the physically impossible, went around the league. He called (or text messaged) each team’s GM: was there anybody willing to take on $24 million? Naturally, not many teams were: $24 million represents nearly half of a team’s salary cap. The team would have to be in a unique position to be even able to take on that much salary, especially in the forms of Andris Biedrins and Richard Jefferson, two players who gave the Warriors very little on the court.

Worse, the teams that were able to make a move became suspicious of Golden State’s intentions: were they doing this because they knew they could sign Dwight Howard? Myers pleaded innocent, promising that his team merely wanted Iguodala, but it was of little use. Teams demanded 4, even 5 1st round draft picks as compensation for the salary. GMs, again, thought they could fleece Myers in his time of desperation. It wouldn’t work.

But Myers was desperate. The Warriors’ brain trust had now mentally pictured Iguodala on their team, and correctly saw him as a perfect fit. Myers couldn’t sleep, the deal yet to be done floating in his head. Pelinka, with limited time for his free agent to work on the open market, set a deadline for noon the following day. If Myers couldn’t solve his cap problems by then, the deal was off.

Myers again scoured the league, calling the teams that had even shown vague interest at the time of his initial call. Utah had been one of those teams, but wasn’t seriously interested without more incentive. But on the morning before the deadline, Myers played his last card: adding the maximum $3.2 million in cash allowed by the CBA.

Surprisingly, the new extra bait worked: Utah had just sent $3.1 million dollars to Denver for the rights to Rudy Gobert, the #27 pick, and was eager to get its money back. Getting the maximum amount in cash was like adding another late 1st round pick, and meant something substantial to the Jazz: essentially, they felt confident that $3.2 million could be put to use effectively in a similar trade in the future. Beyond that, the Warriors offered two 1st round picks, two 2nd round picks, all in exchange for the bloated salaries of Richard Jefferson, Andris Biedrins, and (to a lesser extent) Brandon Rush.

It made sense for the Jazz to take on the salaries in a year in which they weren’t going to compete, and get additional assets for the future. The Jazz also negotiated the picks to work out most favorably for them. For example, the “Stepien Rule” prevents teams from trading consecutive 1st round picks. That means that if the Jazz were going to get a 2014 pick (which they wanted), the next first round pick couldn’t be traded until 2016. But the Jazz know, as does the rest of the league, that the 2017 draft class is highly-rated. Yes, they’re 9th graders, but at this moment in time, it looks like a particularly skilled class of 9th graders. Utah, therefore, asked Golden State to send its 2017 pick rather than its 2016 one. It may require more patience, but could be well worth it in the end. All of the draft picks Utah acquired in the deal are unprotected, meaning that there’s significant upside for Utah should Golden State encounter turbulence.

It seemed like a good solution for both sides: the Warriors would get Andre Iguodala, adding the defensive wing presence they wanted, and the Jazz would get significant long-term assets. But then, Myers applied the tenth and final of Malhotra’s negotiating tenets: “Never end a negotiation with a ‘Yes'”. Simply put, just because a deal is done, doesn’t mean that it can’t be improved upon.

In this case, with the Warriors having signed Iguodala, Denver faced the prospect of losing one of its best players for nothing. Rather than that, Denver chose to become involved in the deal to at least get a Traded Player Exception it could use later. The Nuggets also happened to be wrapping up negotiations with a former Jazz player, Randy Foye. In return, the Jazz would receive an additional second rounder. For Golden State’s part, structuring the deal as a sign-and-trade would allow them to structure Iguodala’s contract so that it declined in its final year, saving them money down the road. The pieces all fit: the complicated salary dump became a three-team trade, in which the Warriors received Iguodala, the Nuggets received Foye, and the Jazz acquired all of the expiring salary and 5 picks.

Both Morey and Myers consider the trade as a win for all sides. Sure, the Nuggets lost the best player, but he was gone anyway. At least the Nuggets got something to use in the future. For the Jazz, they began their rebuilding process in earnest, with 5 additional draft picks to put towards the process of becoming a contender. As Morey put it Friday, “it turned out to be a very good deal for Utah, especially when you look at [what happened at] the trade deadline.”

For the Warriors? They acquired one of the most important two-way players in the league, one that’s been absolutely critical to their success this season.

And it wouldn’t have come together but for the winning negotiation tactics of everyone involved. Congrats, GMs, you’ve passed Negotiations 101.

Author information

Andy Larsen
Andy Larsen
Andy Larsen is the Managing Editor of Salt City Hoops, the ESPN TrueHoop affiliate for the Utah Jazz. He also hosts a radio show and podcast every week on ESPN700 AM in Salt Lake City.
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Jazz Make No Moves at Trade Deadline http://saltcityhoops.com/jazz-make-no-moves-at-trade-deadline/ http://saltcityhoops.com/jazz-make-no-moves-at-trade-deadline/#comments Thu, 20 Feb 2014 22:59:03 +0000 http://saltcityhoops.com/?p=10473 Author information
Dan Clayton
Dan Clayton
Dan covered Utah Jazz basketball for more than 10 years, including as a radio analyst for the team’s Spanish-language broadcasts from 2010 to 2014. He now lives and works in New York City where his hobbies include complaining about League Pass, finding good doughnut shops and dishing out assists for the Thoreau It Down team in the Word Bookstore basketball league.
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Trade Deadline

Guess who’s still a Jazz man? This guy, and all 14 of his teammates. (Photo by Melissa Majchrzak/NBAE via Getty Images)

On an NBA trade deadline that mostly featured tank trades, salary dumps and cosmetic upgrades to a couple teams’ benches, the Utah Jazz again stood pat.

Let’s dive in and look at what happened — and didn’t — to allow all 15 Jazz men to survive the deadline.

Why no deal?

So why no Jazz trades before the deadline? I think it comes down to three reasons.

1) Lack of flexibility. After absorbing salary in last summer’s GSW trade and then filling out the roster, the Jazz were too close to the cap to help desperate teams lop off a couple million in salary. Salt City Hoops can confirm the reported rumor that the Jazz offered Richard Jefferson for Andrew Bynum’s partially guaranteed deal and a second round pick back in January, but the Cavaliers chose to Bynum’s deal to Chicago for Luol Deng. Had that deal happened, the Jazz would have had close to $7 million in cap space and could have been in a position to help teams.

Through that lens, you have to wonder if the Jazz tied their own hands with earlier decisions. They paid $1.6 million to John Lucas III when it’s unclear if there was a market for him above the minimum, and they’ve held onto guys they weren’t really using.  It cost them $382K to keep Mike Harris around for 30ish games, and Malcolm Thomas cost them $884K of cap space the second they claimed him off waivers, whereas he would have counted for a fraction of that if they had let him clear waivers and signed him to 10-day contracts after that.

None of those individual decisions were enough to drastically change the Jazz’s flexibility all alone, but if they had made a point to preserve some wiggle room, it would have been easy to keep enough space to help, say, the Clippers, who tried until the buzzer to shed their last $2.1 million above the tax line.

2) Lack of willingness to deal assets. If I’m reading the signals right, the Jazz’s asset play is all with this summer in mind. It would have been easy enough to pick up some decent players in exchange for a pick or two, but that’s not what the Jazz’s goals are right now. Spending assets today that could have a much higher value on June 26 is short-sighted.

Think of the trade deadline like a poker table at a casino that draws semi-pro players as well as amateurs. The GMs are like the savvy players who sit down and immediately try to figure out who the shills are, who will flinch first and call on a bad hand just for the sake of calling.

The easiest way for Utah to make a deal today would have been to attach an asset, like one of the draft picks they’re owed. That also could have been a big mistake. On or around draft night, the value of a pick has a whole different set of economics. Punting a pick today to grab an Antawn Jamison type doesn’t do anything for the Jazz. Same goes for trading their core of young players.

3) Lack of tradable guys at the right positions. At least five of this week’s trades were built around a team’s need for an upgrade at the point guard position, the one position where the Jazz don’t really have anything to offer. Another handful of teams were looking for frontcourt depth, where the Jazz have two core youngsters, a couple of tweeners, and a couple of centers not really ready to contribute to a contender at this point.

Team needs just didn’t align with what the Jazz had most available: wings.

And yes, they had expiring contracts, but for the most part, teams don’t give up assets for expiring contracts unless a) they have a glaring short-term need and a short contention window, or b) they are able to send back longer-term salary. I don’t see a single trade from this week where an expiring was moved in exchanged for a future asset.

Should they have made a deal anyway?

Most Jazz fans get all that, but still wanted to see a deal that would send out veterans, thin down the depth chart, and keep Utah on track for higher lottery odds. In other words, pull a Lakers (Steve Blake) or Sixers (Evan Turner & Spencer Hawes) type of deal.

I didn’t come into today hoping for a trade, per se. But I do hope the Jazz don’t stay on their current pace and finish the season 14-13 from here on out, because that would waste a season’s worth of patience. From that standpoint, trading Richard Jefferson or Marvin Williams for an injured expiring or a buyout candidate would have improved Utah’s chances at drafting a franchise-changer this season.

I looked pretty hard for such a trade all week, and didn’t find much, but that’s still the one reason I would have preferred to see some movement.

What’s next?

The hip question to ask now is about buyouts, especially for Jefferson, Brandon Rush and Andris Biedrins.

I think a buyout is unlikely in any of those cases, because I can’t find a situation where it makes sense for both parties. Biedrins and Rush just haven’t played well enough to have much of a market as late additions to contending teams, and neither is probably anxious to take a pay cut given that both have seen their free agency values drop significantly. Same goes for Lucas, who realistically isn’t going to get a rotation job on a playoff team at this stage.

Jefferson is, I suppose, slightly more likely. He could theoretically help a contender that needs shooting help, and has expressed a willingness to surrender a few dollars for a chance to win. It still seems like a stretch, though; he’s eight weeks away from his last Jazz game anyway, so taking a big discount out of impatience seems like a reach. And will the Jazz want to pay him $135K per game to not play? My guess is the discount would have to be close to the amount he hasn’t earned yet, or at least split the difference, especially since the new set-off rules make it so the Jazz really wouldn’t get a break if he’s signed elsewhere.

Speaking of “what’s next,” I’ll end with few other predictions and thoughts:

  • Now that Williams made it through the deadline season, I think it’s entirely possible to expect him back next year. The Jazz have liked his influence both on and off the court, and he seems to genuinely like it here. Provided the money lines up, I think Marv might continue as a Jazz man.
  • Same goes for Gordon Hayward. I’ve already hypothesized that the only way Hayward would get dealt was to help Utah land a top 5 pick in the coming draft, and since he can’t be used that way now, I think their position is to match any offer. No inside info there, just my gut talking. Even a max offer from Boston or Phoenix would represent a discount on what the Jazz’s max for Hayward would be.
  • Just to remind you what the Jazz have asset-wise going into the draft and summer… S&T rights on Marvin could help if a team wants to outbid MLE offers, but my guess is that doesn’t happen. The bird rights to Biedrins, Rush and Jefferson are also effectively valueless given the salary range those three can expect on new contracts. The Jazz will have rights of first refusal in dealing with Gordon Hayward. They have their own picks in both rounds of upcoming drafts, plus additional 1sts in 2014 & 2017, extra seconds in 2016-2018. They have very tradable young talent, as well as the draft rights to Ante Tomic and Raul Neto. They have about $46 million in cap space, minus cap holds. They likely renounce most cap holds, other than Hayward ($8.6M) and whomever they draft.

Author information

Dan Clayton
Dan Clayton
Dan covered Utah Jazz basketball for more than 10 years, including as a radio analyst for the team’s Spanish-language broadcasts from 2010 to 2014. He now lives and works in New York City where his hobbies include complaining about League Pass, finding good doughnut shops and dishing out assists for the Thoreau It Down team in the Word Bookstore basketball league.
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Utah Jazz Trade Rumors and Trade Machine Fun http://saltcityhoops.com/utah-jazz-trade-rumors-and-trade-machine-fun/ http://saltcityhoops.com/utah-jazz-trade-rumors-and-trade-machine-fun/#comments Wed, 19 Feb 2014 20:30:00 +0000 http://saltcityhoops.com/?p=10439 Author information
David J Smith
David J Smith
Besides writing for Salt City Hoops, David contributes to the Utah Jazz coverage for the Deseret News (instant analysis articles), WeAreUtahJazz.com, UtahJazz360.com and previously for Hoopsworld.com. He graduated from BYU and works for LDS Philanthropies. His wife, Elizabeth, is the most patient person in the world and they have four amazing children; Kadence, Tayah, Stockton (yes, really), and Cambria.
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Yoon S. Byun/Boston Globe staff

Yoon S. Byun/Boston Globe staff

First off, Salt City Hoops has a lot of great NBA trade deadline material. If you’ve not done so, check out Dan Clayton’s perspectives on each team’s outlook for trades, both in the Eastern and Western Conferences. Denim Millward also lays things out quite well and predicts that the deadline comes and goes quietly for the Utah Jazz. Only time will tell.

So far, the rumor mill has been humming loudly, with many names and deals circulating out there. It may not be everyone’s thing, but count me as one who likes himself a good rumor. Or two. Or twenty.

As it typically the case, the Utah Jazz have not been tied to many of these rumors. Perhaps that’s a precursor to something actually happening, seeing as the franchise is notoriously tight-lipped. Last year, some rumors came out, but mostly after talks (whether or not they actually took place or not) did not pan out.

Yesterday, A. Sherrod Blakely and CSNNE.com reported–to no one’s surprise–that the Boston Celtics have interest in Gordon Hayward. That has been mentioned often the past two months, including the one and only Bill Simmons (always looking out for a deal that helps his beloved Cs). Obviously people connect the dots because of the Butler connection between Hayward and Boston head coach Brad Stevens. The report mentions the Jazz being reticent of bringing back mercurial Rajon Rondo (fearing he would not re-sign in Utah after 2015) or Jeff Green and that the Celtics are leery of including any picks from their incredibly massive hoard of them. So then, how exactly would a deal get done? Your guess is as good as mine.

More importantly, Hayward is a talent that a lot of teams would love to have on their roster (and not just Boston), but as Kurt Helin of ProBasketballTalk asserts, that does not mean the swingman changes locations. And I mostly agree. The Jazz brass are high on Hayward, but at the same time, I think if a killer deal was presented, they would listen. Boston and the Phoenix Suns both make sense both with coaching (Jeff Hornacek) and their litany of draft picks and young players.

Now, how about a little ESPN Trade Machine fun? Heaven bless the individual who created this, by the way. Here are a few trades that would make some sense from a Utah Jazz perspective. To absolutely clarify, these are just one person’s takes. Our friends Clark Schmutz and Peter J. Novak at SLC Dunk also had some great trade suggestions for the Jazz.

Utah trades forward Marvin Williams and swingman Brandon Rush to the Charlotte Bobcats for guard Ben Gordon and a draft pick. (here is the deal on the Trade Machine)

By all accounts, the Bobcats are buyers with the postseason as their goal. Al Jefferson is doing everything in his power to propel them there, but they could use some depth, scoring and shooting (thus the rumors around guys like Evan Turner and Gary Neal). Enter Williams and Rush. This would be essentially trading expirings for expirings, but would add two guys who could fit into the Charlotte rotation for a guy who is not playing at all. They would provide some perimeter marksmanship, with Williams being the key. The Bobcats have a few picks, so might be willing to part with one of them. Lastly, Williams would be back home in North Carolina–something that might appeal to Michael Jordan.

Utah trades forward Richard Jefferson to the Milwaukee Bucks for forward Ersan Ilyasova and big man Ekpe Udoh. (the deal on the Trade Machine)

It sounds like almost everyone on the Milwaukee roster is available, especially with the Bucks the clear “leaders” in the tanking game. This move would enable them to shed Ilyasova’s long-term deal. Now, in this scenario, the Jazz would have to view him as a piece to the puzzle, thanks to his ability to be a true stretch four. He can definitely shoot and is a decent rebounder, things that could complement Derrick Favors up front. The Jazz want to maintain financial flexibility moving forward, but I think would take on money if it meant they got a guy they like. Udoh is a decent back-up big.

Utah trades John Lucas III and a second-round pick to the Sacramento Kings for guard Jimmer Fredette (this trade on the Trade Machine)

This is mostly to see if you were paying attention. There’s no lightning rod like Jimmer amongst Utah Jazz fans. But this actually would make some sense…

Another team to watch is the Los Angeles Clippers. With their desire to inject some front court depth, perhaps Marvin Williams would be of interest. They are said to be dangling Jared Dudley and Matt Barnes. While neither of these guys makes sense for Utah, should a pick or Reggie Bullock be included, perhaps it might get Utah’s attention.

Any trade thoughts or suggestions? Feel free to share in the comments. You may now go back to refreshing Twitter.

Author information

David J Smith
David J Smith
Besides writing for Salt City Hoops, David contributes to the Utah Jazz coverage for the Deseret News (instant analysis articles), WeAreUtahJazz.com, UtahJazz360.com and previously for Hoopsworld.com. He graduated from BYU and works for LDS Philanthropies. His wife, Elizabeth, is the most patient person in the world and they have four amazing children; Kadence, Tayah, Stockton (yes, really), and Cambria.
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Trade Deadline Central: Around the Western Conference http://saltcityhoops.com/deadline-central-wc/ http://saltcityhoops.com/deadline-central-wc/#comments Tue, 18 Feb 2014 19:15:55 +0000 http://saltcityhoops.com/?p=10362 Author information
Dan Clayton
Dan Clayton
Dan covered Utah Jazz basketball for more than 10 years, including as a radio analyst for the team’s Spanish-language broadcasts from 2010 to 2014. He now lives and works in New York City where his hobbies include complaining about League Pass, finding good doughnut shops and dishing out assists for the Thoreau It Down team in the Word Bookstore basketball league.
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Are WC contenders like LA looking for help? Jazz have a guy or two...  (Photo by Andrew D. Bernstein/NBAE via Getty Images)

Are WC contenders like LA looking for help? Jazz have a guy or two… (Photo by Andrew D. Bernstein/NBAE via Getty Images)

Last updated 2/19/14 at 2:18 p.m. EDT.

February 20 will be an interesting day, either because of breaking Jazz news or because of the lack of it.

Either way, we’ll have a better sense in less than a week what the Jazz’s direction and plan looks like. Are they really going all in on the 2014 draft? Is the team winning too much for Dennis Lindsey’s liking? Are they planning to stockpile more assets? Are they preserving cap space? How untouchable is Gordon Hayward? How untouchable are any of the Jazz’s core?

I don’t know what’s going to happen, but I do know that every time I read a trade rumor, my mental reflex is to figure out a way the Jazz could improve their 2014-15 roster by getting involved.

Let’s take a look at the latest we’re hearing from the Association’s 29 other teams, and where the Jazz might or might not fit into those conversations. For some teams we’ll only have a quick sentence or two, but there are some places the Jazz could get involved.

Check back over the next week - I’ll be updating this with relevant tidbits as the deadline draws nearer. Also make sure you check out the East teams, too.

Dallas – Basketball Insiders report that the Mavs are mostly fine with their roster and will make only minor deals, if any. Still, as a fringe playoff team with an aging (and otherwise fragile) roster, it wouldn’t take much for them to need some insurance. That’s probably the most likely way they become buyers. If they do, they’ve got some extra 2nd rounders, including one from Boston that should be pretty valuable.

Denver – The only rumors from the other side of the Rockies are ones involving the Nugs selling. It’s starting to sound like Andre Miller might be a central figure this deadline since a lot of the teams considered buyers have the ex-Ute on their radar. The fact that we’re even mentioning Kenneth Faried underscores that the Nugs are selling and not buying, plus it’s wildly interesting how quickly they’ve decided to reset on what was supposed to be a more competitive roster.

Golden State – The Warriors, logically, would love to upgrade their bench, especially with big bodies, writes Sam Amick. (Bleacher Report also says they might try to reacquire Jarrett Jack, but that seems like a long shot.) They don’t have a lot of assets, but they can absorb salary with the large trade exceptions they got last summer in the Utah deal. They seem to be coming to the conclusion that most players who can help them aren’t going to be available for free, and the only true untouchables are Steph Curry and Andrew Bogut. Honestly, I think they’ll come up empty unless they’ll include Harrison Barnes… and in any case, probably nothing here for the Jazz. But they’re buying, at least in theory.

Houston – Everybody knows Houston is OK undoing the financial commitments to Omer Asik and Jeremy Lin, and Basketball Insiders say that there are standing offers for the Turk that Houston could evoke at any moment. But in case that makes them sound purely like sellers, there are some names they like, too. PG and PF are their apparent targets. If the Jazz wanted to oblige, they could maybe get a Donatas or Terrence Jones type player in return. If they wanted something better – say, one or more of the whopping six incoming 2nd rounders Houston is owed – they’re probably going to have to help with Lin or Asik.

LA Clippers – The Clips finally have all their principals healthy at the same time, so with the second best point diff in the conference, they may choose to see what they’ve got. But most speculation around what they *would* do if they decided to dabble in the market is find some upgrades to their bench unit. They might not be buyers, but they’re definitely not sellers, so they’re someone the Jazz should at least check in with a couple times.

LA Lakers – I can’t think of a reason why anybody on this roster would be untouchable. OK, probably Bean, but he’s untradeable anyway given that new extension. Everything starts with Pau Gasol here, which is a short way of saying everything is about how to save money, not winning now. (Mitch Kupchak said as much.)

Memphis – This is mostly a gut feeling, but I see the Grizz as a team who might be looking for an upgrade  – and a recent Yahoo! rumor bears me out on that. They’re big on culture/chemistry there, but given that they’re on the edge of making the playoffs and have so many guys battling health issues, a nice addition or two for depth’s sake would really help them. There are 2013 rumors to suggest that the Grizz at least considered Marvin Williams at some point. Maybe others of the Jazz’s expirings would be interesting, too. USA Today says they’re after wings (Sam Amick reiterates this), and the Jazz have a few of those who should be available. They’re asset situation isn’t great (next 1st they can trade is 2017), but they might be shopping.

Minnesota – If Minny were still realistically in the playoff hunt, they might be more earnest buyers. In their current situation, though, they reportedly are still willing to deal some of their minor pieces, like the inexpensive JJ Barea, Dante Cunningham (expiring) or Alexey Shved. In fact, a late Monday rumor from Marc Stein suggests that if they can offload Barea, they may be interested in exiled Nugget (and ex-Ute) Andre Miller. If you want a Jazz angle, a Rush-Barea dump clears the way for Minny, saves them money next year, and might get the Jazz one of Minnesota’s extra second rounders. (They have three second rounders this year. Their 1st is owed.)

New Orleans – The Pellies are willing to change a lot — even their mascot’s beak. Sounds like everybody up to Eric Gordon is available for the right offer. The Disabled Player Exception they appear to be getting for Ryan Anderson makes things interesting, too. First, because now they can acquire a player for up to $4.25M without sending money out, and second because it probably alters the calculus for Anderson himself. They suddenly are starting to sound like buyers, whereas a couple days ago I would have had them in the stand-pat category.

OKC – You wouldn’t think they need a whole lot, but the Rudy Fernandez rumor suggests they might want some bench upgrades and shooting. Not sure the Jazz have what they’re after, but it could be worth a phone call, especially if they’d part with  a Dallas pick that could be in the early 20s or the very valuable #31-35 they have coming from Philly.

Phoenix – Everybody and their dog is saying that Phoenix is the team to watch this deadline, with good reason. They have very real needs and very real assets — one of few definite buyers in the market. They want to add a piece without compromising their core, so this is a team that might actually be willing to cash in an asset for an expiring.

Portland – A week or two ago, conventional wisdom was that PDX would stand pat. But the Joel Freeland injury gives them a frontcourt depth issue they might want to address going into the playoffs. Problem is, they don’t have a 1st this year, they can’t trade next year’s, and the next 2nd they own is in 2018. So you have to wonder: would the Jazz be able to use a way-future pick from a good team in an asset package to get what they want this summer? Maybe not, but call ‘em anyway.

Sacramento – I would tentatively take Sacto off the buyers list now that they’ve dealt Marcus Thornton to Brooklyn. First, because this smells like a tank move to me. Jason Terry is on a fast decline (36% FG and 50% TS) and Reggie Evans has barely been playing (40 minutes total in February, DNP in the last three), so I have a hard time buying that the Kings did this deal to get better. Second, I also don’t know that they have the assets to do much more. They have eight (!!!) outstanding draft debts (a couple incoming 2nds in ’16 and ’18), so not much to work with.

San Antonio – Ken Berger suggested last month that the Spurs were working the phones pretty hard. A recent RealGM rumor might explain why: if this is really it for Tim Duncan, there’s going to be a lot of pressure to make this last run count. Take this rumor with a grain of salt, but if it’s true at all, this moves the Spurs firmly into the buyer column, especially as it relates to expiring guys (so they can still start a post-Tim rebuild). Wow. Can’t believe I just types those words.

Again, stay tuned for more as rumors develop. We’ll keep updating with any Jazz angles on rumors that pop up over All-Star Weekend and beyond.

Author information

Dan Clayton
Dan Clayton
Dan covered Utah Jazz basketball for more than 10 years, including as a radio analyst for the team’s Spanish-language broadcasts from 2010 to 2014. He now lives and works in New York City where his hobbies include complaining about League Pass, finding good doughnut shops and dishing out assists for the Thoreau It Down team in the Word Bookstore basketball league.
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Trade Deadline Central: Around the Eastern Conference http://saltcityhoops.com/deadline-central-ec/ http://saltcityhoops.com/deadline-central-ec/#comments Mon, 17 Feb 2014 16:39:38 +0000 http://saltcityhoops.com/?p=10354 Author information
Dan Clayton
Dan Clayton
Dan covered Utah Jazz basketball for more than 10 years, including as a radio analyst for the team’s Spanish-language broadcasts from 2010 to 2014. He now lives and works in New York City where his hobbies include complaining about League Pass, finding good doughnut shops and dishing out assists for the Thoreau It Down team in the Word Bookstore basketball league.
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ectrade

The Sixers’ Thaddeus Young and Evan Turner could be had for the right price. What about Alec Burks? (Photo by Melissa Majchrzak/NBAE via Getty Images)

Last updated 2/19/14 2:24 p.m. EDT.

February 20 will be an interesting day, either because of breaking Jazz news or because of the lack of it.

Either way, we’ll have a better sense in less than a week what the Jazz’s direction and plan looks like. Are they really going all in on the 2014 draft? Is the team winning too much for Dennis Lindsey’s liking? Are they planning to stockpile more assets? Are they preserving cap space? How untouchable is Gordon Hayward? How untouchable are any of the Jazz’s core.

I don’t know what’s going to happen, but I do know that every time I read a trade rumor, my mental reflex is to figure out a way the Jazz could improve their 2014-15 roster by getting involved.

Let’s take a look at the latest we’re hearing from the Association’s 29 other teams, and where the Jazz might or might not fit into those conversations. For some teams we’ll only have a quick sentence or two, but there are some places the Jazz could get involved.

Check back over the next week - I’ll be updating this with relevant tidbits as the deadline draws nearer. Also, be sure to check out the Western Conference action, too.

Atlanta – Zach Lowe opines that the Hawks could be a deadline wildcard, logic being that they may want to improve their team. That is buyer language right there. Most of Atlanta’s assets are actual players. They don’t have extra first round picks, although they have a right to swap picks with Brooklyn in both of the next two drafts, making those picks (at least their 2014) significantly more valuable. However, not sure I see a lot on the Jazz’s roster that ATL would want, unless they’re willing to part ways with some of the young talent.

Boston – Like the Jazz, Boston’s in asset collection mode; they’re sellers, not buyers. Throw in this speculation from CBSSports that the Cs have a pretty hefty price tag attached to some of their players, and there’s probably nothing here for the Jazz. Of course, we can’t dismiss Boston without addressing the Gordon Hayward rumor. This rumor is hardly surprising, but also not very feasible. The Celtics only have one thing I could imagine the Jazz wanting in exchange for arguably their best player: that’s their 2014 pick. And I have a hard time seeing Boston attach that unless there are several other components to the deal: like, Utah also sends Kanter/Burke/Burks and takes back Humprhies/Wallace.

Brooklyn – My new hometown team decided to give up on the Jarrett Jack sweepstakes and grab Marcus Thornton, but it sounds like they’re still doing some shopping. The Jordan Hill rumor alone suggests they would like to address some frontcourt depth. However… their cap sheet it an unprecedented, unmitigated mess, they owe a ton of picks and unfavorable “right-to-swaps,” and their players are all in huge regression years (which is why I’m surprised they were able to get Thornton for two off-year and aging vets). Keep an eye on them for sure, but remember that they don’t have a ton to work with.

Charlotte – The Bobnets are interesting. They’re rumored to be buyers and they have tons of extra assets. They’ve been linked to Evan Turner and Brandon Bass, and they appear willing to deal their extra picks if it gets the job done. Detroit’s pick (only top 8 protected) could wind up being very valuable, but unless Utah wanted to give them a long-term piece, the Portland pick is probably the best we could hope for.

Chicago – This is another team in a great asset position, but nobody knows what their goals are. They’d probably most like to get out from under salary (we see you, Carlos Boozer), but GM John Paxon made it sound to the Sun Times like they’re after a “great player” or they’ll continue to hold their cards. Those cards include a pick in the teens from Charlotte and what could eventually be a late lotto pick from Sacramento, but the Jazz probably can only pry those away if they eat some salary.

Cleveland – The Cavs are probably in a state of flux right now, with a brand new interim GM pulling the strings, although he’s one who, as one GM told Yahoo! Sports, could be looking to impress at the deadline. Sam Amico says the team has told Dion Waiter and Kyrie Irving to stop looking over their shoulders, but you have to think anybody else on that roster is fair game. Problem is, nobody else makes enough to be a headliner of a deal except for the expiring Luol Deng and virtual expirings Anderson Varejao and Earl Clark, none of which make sense for the non-contending Jazz.

Detroit – So Jared Zwerling is now saying Greg Monroe is not moving, which effectively ends the debate about whether or not he’d fit the Jazz. My take on him has been that it’s a risky proposition paying someone eight figures as a 5 who doesn’t anchor your defense and has middling offensive efficiency. (Both of those things were true of Al, by the way.) Even without Monroe on the table, they sound like at least lukewarm buyers. They are reportedly trying to make the playoffs, but I doubt they’d give anything really valuable away for an expiring vet to help them squeeze into the eighth seed and get tossed around by Indy. Maybe a second rounder, but my guess is they’ll wait until the summer unless someone makes an overwhelming offer.

Indiana – Not much talk here, unless they can net an asset for Danny Granger’s last two months under contract. Can’t see the Jazz biting there.

Miami – The only way I see them becoming deadline buyers is if they decide they need some injury insurance going into the postseason. Even if they did, they don’t have a lot to offer; no incoming picks and their own picks will be some of the least valuable in the draft.

Milwaukee – You know they’re not giving up their 2014 without some heavy protections, which is why I was surprised to hear they are apparently at least toying with the idea of becoming buyers, at least where Eric Gordon is concerned. That tells you there’s at least some possibility that the Bucks decide to acquire a player in the next week.

New York – The Knicks are chatty, which is surprising given the lack of assets (the earliest first rounder they could trade is 2018 and the only 2nd they own in that span is Sacramento’s this year) and the awful cap situation. But they’re trying to find ways to get anyone from Kyle Lowry to Kenneth Faried to Glen Rice Jr. Hard to say if any of it will work, but at least we know there are some deadline buyers in Manhattan if the Jazz want to make a sales pitch.

Orlando – Steve Kyler’s tweets lately give the impression that Orlando’s taking a rather passive approach, answering calls but not shopping their guys. At any rate, to the extend they’re involved in the market, it’s as sellers, not buyers. The Jazz, at least from where I sit, are looking to engage buyers.

Philadelphia – Sellers. Total sellers. In fact, their goal is essentially the same as the Jazz’s goal: to improve draft chances. So probably no deals here for the Jazz and the fire-sale Sixers who are even shopping Evan Turner, Thaddeus Young and Spencer Hawes.

Toronto – It’s looking increasingly like the Raptors will stand pat. Lowry, according to several columns and tweets, is off the market. A while ago, they were rumored to be shopping Greivis Vasquez, a guy who has always intrigued me, but I can’t see the Jazz jumping in there, especially if it looks like Toronto might not make the qualifying offer or match fair market value.

Washington – They’re buyers, but the Wizards’ biggest deadline need is one thing the Jazz don’t really have to offer: a solid backup point guard.  I can’t see them making a huge play for the Jazz’s backups, both of whom are putting up sub replacement-level numbers. The Wiz are interested in another big man, though. Maybe this is a place where Marvin WIlliams could land, although the best Washington could offer would be a 2nd rounder or maybe a young, cheap player.

Again, stay tuned for more as rumors develop. We’ll keep updating with any Jazz angles on rumors that pop up over All-Star Weekend and beyond.

Author information

Dan Clayton
Dan Clayton
Dan covered Utah Jazz basketball for more than 10 years, including as a radio analyst for the team’s Spanish-language broadcasts from 2010 to 2014. He now lives and works in New York City where his hobbies include complaining about League Pass, finding good doughnut shops and dishing out assists for the Thoreau It Down team in the Word Bookstore basketball league.
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The Utah Jazz and Deadline Deals: 2004-2014 http://saltcityhoops.com/the-utah-jazz-and-deadline-deals-2004-2014/ http://saltcityhoops.com/the-utah-jazz-and-deadline-deals-2004-2014/#comments Wed, 12 Feb 2014 22:33:06 +0000 http://saltcityhoops.com/?p=10329 Author information
David J Smith
David J Smith
Besides writing for Salt City Hoops, David contributes to the Utah Jazz coverage for the Deseret News (instant analysis articles), WeAreUtahJazz.com, UtahJazz360.com and previously for Hoopsworld.com. He graduated from BYU and works for LDS Philanthropies. His wife, Elizabeth, is the most patient person in the world and they have four amazing children; Kadence, Tayah, Stockton (yes, really), and Cambria.
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Bill Kostroun/AP

Bill Kostroun/AP

Thursday, February 20th is a date NBA fans have clearly marked on their calendars: the NBA trade deadline. As is the case this time each year, the basketball world circles with rumors of teams discussing their players, their picks or assets and the financial situations. Teams wanting to make the Playoffs may consider deals that help them short-term. Others who know the postseason is no longer a possibility may opt to adopt a long-term approach. It’s an exciting time of the year and one that can affect a team going forward. (side note: deadline day is a perfect reason why Twitter was created. Constant refresh that entire day. Sheer genius.)

Last year, due to the amazing number of expiring contracts, the Utah Jazz were among the most mentioned teams in floating rumors. Then, the deadline came and went without a single move, which was disappointing to some fans and understandable to others. Whether or not the franchise will be involved in any trades this go-around, the deadline is bound to be another fun roller coaster of intrigue.

The Jazz are typically not regulars when it comes to brokering deadline deals, with only four such moves in the last 10 years. When they have, they have been moves that affected the franchise both on and off the court. Let’s take a stroll down memory lane, as we review the deadline deals from the past decade:

February 19, 2004: Utah Jazz trade forwards Keon Clark and Ben Handlogten to the Phoenix Suns for forward Tom Gugliotta, two first-round picks, a 2005 second-round pick and cash.

This trade came in that illustrious post-Stockton and Malone season where Jerry Sloan orchestrated a marvelous season from a team some predicted to be the worst team in NBA history. It was a roster full of overachievers, including the hard-working Handlogten (Clark was a disappointment and his life has become tragic). The Jazz also possessed a lot of financial flexibility and they used it in a deal to acquire some long-term assets. Gugliotta was at the end of a nice career and was making $11.7 million–money the Suns wanted to shed. The Jazz absorbed his deal and picked up some picks along the way. His modest contributions on the court were icing on the cake.

The Jazz used one of the picks for Kirk Snyder–an unmitigated disaster. But five years later, the other pick–acquired by Phoenix through the ineptitude of the New York Knicks–eventually became today’s leading scorer, Gordon Hayward. Hayward’s future is very bright and he could be a cornerstone for many years to come. All in all, a very good trade (something the Jazz hope they replicated with last summer’s move with the Golden State Warriors).

February 19, 2004: Utah Jazz trade guard DeShawn Stevenson and a second-round pick to the Orlando Magic for guard Gordan Giricek 

Stevenson had an up-and-down tenure with the Jazz. Drafted straight out of high school, he encountered some off-court troubles that marred his early career. The athletic guard played a reserve role his first three seasons and was eventually given the chance to start. Stevenson was solid, but was definitely not spectacular: 11.4 PPG, 3.7 RPG and 2.0 APG as a starter (He did have this redeeming interaction with Ricky Davis). His perimeter shooting was poor, which caused spacing issues (coincidentally, as his career waned, his outside shooting was his main staple). Thus the move for Giricek, which was consummated on the same day as the Gugliotta transaction.

Giricek is best known for his rough relationship with Sloan. He seemed to have frequent stays in Jerry’s doghouse. But for four seasons, he was a decent perimeter threat. His first season, he was quite good (13.5 PPG and 36% 3s)–enough for Larry H. Miller to re-sign him to a four-year, $16 million deal. He never reached those marks again, but had moments. Eventually he was traded in a December deal for sharpshooter and fan favorite Kyle Korver.

February 18, 2010: Utah Jazz trade guard Ronnie Brewer to the Memphis Grizzlies for a 2011 first-round draft pick.

This was a move that disappointed a lot of Jazz fans, as well as a franchise point guard in Deron Williams. Brewer had become a fan favorite thanks to his tireless energy, his defensive effort and his athletic dunks. Few players in Jazz history have functioned better without the ball. While his shooting was a weakness, Brewer shot a high percentage and looked to be a mainstay in the back court. Well, the Jazz were in the midst of some financial bedlam, thanks to several large contracts ($59 million combined for Andrei Kirilenko, Carlos Boozer, Mehmet Okur, Deron Williams and Paul Millsap). With C.J. Miles showing some modest improvement and undrafted free agent Wesley Matthews becoming a revelation for Utah, Brewer was shipped out for a draft pick which was used that offseason to bring in Al Jefferson.

Brewer was reportedly on the team plane to fly out for a road trip when word came out. He bid his farewells to his coaches and teammates and went to Memphis. He unfortunately was hurt his first game with the Grizzlies and never played for them after that.

February 23, 2011: Utah Jazz trade guard Deron Williams to the New Jersey Nets for big man Derrick Favors, guard Devin Harris and two first-round draft picks. 

This whole experience still stings for some of the Utah Jazz populace. Much has been said about it and it will always be a major date in franchise history. A few weeks earlier was the infamous Jazz/Bulls game that ended up being Sloan’s final at the helm. The discord between Sloan and Williams was evident and whatever transpired that fateful evening proved to be the final straw for the venerable coach. Tyrone Corbin was installed and Utah tried to get back into a groove, but things were still not right.

Then came the shocking news that D-Will had been shipped across the country to the Nets, in exchange for a package of promising players and valuable draft picks. The Nets had been in talks with the Denver Nuggets for the then-pouting star Carmelo Anthony. After their offer was usurped by the New York Knicks, the Jazz and Nets moved quickly to make this happen. Williams had been the heart and soul for Utah. His talent was remarkable, while his attitude was sometimes sour.

Who won the trade? It’s hard to make any firm declarations yet, but indicators may favor the Jazz. Williams has battled constant injuries throughout his time in a Nets uniform. While it appears Brooklyn will be playoff bound after a slow, slow start, Williams still does not look right (with a max contract in tow, too).

Utah went on to pick up two #3 picks in Favors and Enes Kanter (Jazz moved up in the draft lottery that May) and their potential is evident. Favors looks to be the defensive anchor going forward, while the Jazz are still seeing what they have in Kanter. Harris was serviceable before being traded for Marvin Williams, who is having a nice season for Utah. The final draft pick was part of the package that enabled Dennis Lindsey to move up for Trey Burke. When it is all said and done, the Jazz sent Deron Williams for Favors, Kanter, Williams and part of Burke. Not a bad haul.

With the Jazz add a fifth trade to this list next week? This is the first deadline with Dennis Lindsey fully in charge, so who knows what will transpire. If Draft night was an precursor, he may be very active next week.

Only time will tell.

Author information

David J Smith
David J Smith
Besides writing for Salt City Hoops, David contributes to the Utah Jazz coverage for the Deseret News (instant analysis articles), WeAreUtahJazz.com, UtahJazz360.com and previously for Hoopsworld.com. He graduated from BYU and works for LDS Philanthropies. His wife, Elizabeth, is the most patient person in the world and they have four amazing children; Kadence, Tayah, Stockton (yes, really), and Cambria.
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