Nets Interested In J.J. Hickson?

February 15 2013 at 5:42pm CST By Luke Adams

5:42pm: Bondy tweets that he "got pushback" from the Nets about his earlier report that the team is eyeing Hickson. That doesn't necessarily mean the rumor isn't true, but it seems at least the Nets are denying it.

3:07pm: As they continue to search for frontcourt help, the Nets may be eyeing a Trail Blazer, according to Stefan Bondy of the New York Daily News (via Twitter). Bondy reports that the Nets are interested in J.J. Hickson.

Hickson, 24, is enjoying the best season of his career in Portland, and is on an expiring contract. While that would typically make him a much-discussed trade candidate, Hickson also has the ability to veto any trade, since he would lose his Bird Rights if he's dealt. The former Cavalier has indicated that he's happy with the Blazers, so it's unclear whether or not he'd approve a move that would hurt his leverage in unrestricted free agency this summer.

The Nets, meanwhile, have been linked to a number of potential trade targets, including Ben Gordon, Paul Millsap, and Josh Smith. Those players all earn significantly more than Hickson's $4MM salary, so an offer for the Portland big man could be composed of smaller pieces rather than including Kris Humphries and his $12MM salary. MarShon Brooks ($1.16MM), Mirza Teletovic ($3.09MM), and Andray Blatche (minimum salary) are among the players the Nets could dangle if they engage in talks with the Blazers.

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