Numbers just didn't work in Raps-Cavs rumor
The source of the Raps-Cavs trade rumor should've checked Vince Carter's contract first.
Editor's note: As part of "The Stein Line" every Monday, ESPN.com senior NBA writer Marc Stein gives his take on things in "Slams and Dunks."
Recent speculation about Vince Carter being traded to Cleveland for Zydrunas Ilgauskas and Darius Miles, if you can even deem it speculation, was understandably scoffed at by Raptors general manager Glen Grunwald. For even if the Raptors were game for a swap of the injury-plagued Carter for the injury-tortured Big Z straight up, salary-cap strictures would prevent it. Carter is a base-year player, in the first year of his new max contract, meaning he can be traded only for someone earning half as much ($5 million) as he does until July 1.
Seems Luke, then, has a new fire to squelch on this combustible squad of talented prospects. Let's see how this one turns out after he got Ricky Davis to stop squawking and to focus on scoring.
Jackson will be considered a luxury item if the Kings are fully healthy in the playoffs, but coach Rick Adelman also says he sees Jackson as an enticing third option on a list of potential defenders to throw at Kobe Bryant along with Doug Christie and Bobby Jackson. By now, Adelman has to be skeptical anyway about the Kings ever finding full strength after the ever-improving Bobby Jackson was lost for six weeks.
And if you're curious, the answer is yes: Sacramento's conspiracy theorists have duly noted (and are loudly protesting the fact) that there wasn't a foul called on Shaquille O'Neal for the swipe responsible for breaking Jackson's finger.
|Either Riles should have gotten a stiffer sentence for unfairly and publicly staining the reputation of a referee, or the referee crossed the uncrossable line of impartiality.|
Equally disturbing is the absence of follow-up discussion or explanation of Pat Riley's $50,000 fine for accusing referee Steve Javie of saying he takes "delight" in watching the Heat "die." The conversation Riley quotes is now a year old, and yet we are no closer to knowing why Riles received such a benign punishment in the wake of such serious allegations. Either Riles should have gotten a stiffer sentence for unfairly and publicly staining the reputation of a referee, or the referee crossed the uncrossable line of impartiality.
Just Wondering II: Will Jim O'Brien ever consider playing Tony Battie and Vin Baker together in a more traditionally sized starting lineup, just to see if that alignment holds any benefit for Paul Pierce and Antoine Walker ... or just for the shakeup value with the Celtics coming off a bad trip?
Just Wondering III: Will these be the last few months in Golden State for Garry St. Jean, amid assumptions that Chris Mullin is being groomed to take over the Warriors' front office?
Marc Stein is the senior NBA writer for ESPN.com. To e-mail him, click here.
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