It may not be many more days until our long national Dwightmare is over. Yesterday's reports on Howard suggested talks involving the Magic, Nets, and Cavaliers were getting serious, and that Orlando plans to make "one last sweep" around the league before deciding whether to accept the Nets' offer. While we wait to see if anything is agreed upon today, here are the latest rumblings on the Howard front:
- Chad Ford's ESPN.com report includes some more slight tweaks to the framework described below. Ford adds Chris Duhon to the list of players headed to the Nets, suggests the Magic would receive one fewer first-rounder (a total of three instead of four), and says the Cavs would receive $3MM in cash.
- Ford's report, along with tweets from the Cleveland Plain Dealer and Ken Berger of CBSSports.com, suggest that the Cavs and Clippers still aren't entirely on board. The Plain Dealer tweets that talk of a deal getting close is premature, while Berger says the Clips haven't agreed to anything yet and are one of several potential fourth-team facilitators in the mix (Twitter links).
- It "sounds like" the Magic, Nets, and Cavs have found a fourth team to facilitate the Howard blockbuster, tweets Alex Kennedy of HoopsWorld. According to Chad Ford of ESPN.com (Twitter link), that team is the Clippers — Los Angeles would acquire MarShon Brooks in exchange for a lottery-protected first-round pick, which would go to the Magic.
- In addition to the framework described by Wojnarowski below, the Magic would also receive Armon Johnson from the Nets in the proposed deal, tweets Ken Berger of CBSSports.com, who cautions in a second tweet that pieces could still move in or out.
- Before either team agreed to any deal, Magic doctors would need to examine Brook Lopez and Nets doctors would need to examine Dwight Howard, says Adrian Wojnarowski (Twitter links).
- Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports had the details of the proposed three-team blockbuster: The Nets would receive Dwight Howard, Jason Richardson, and Earl Clark, the Magic would receive Brook Lopez, Damion James, Shelden Williams, and Luke Walton, and the Cavs would receive Kris Humphries, Sundiata Gaines, and Quentin Richardson. The Nets would also send three first-round picks to the Magic, one to the Cavs, and would send MarShon Brooks to a fourth team to acquire another first-rounder for the Magic.
- A source tells the Cleveland Plain Dealer that a deal involving the Cavs looks doubtful at this point (Twitter link).
- Don't expect a Howard deal to go down today, tweets Brian K. Schmitz of the Orlando Sentinel. Getting Andrew Bynum from the Lakers would be Orlando's best deal, but the club is concerned about his knees holding up, Schmitz tweets.
- Kris Humphries would be seeking a four-year deal with the Cavs and wouldn't be willing to sign a one-year deal, tweets Marc J. Spears of Yahoo! Sports. Sign-and-trades require a three-year minimum, but only one year needs to be guaranteed. Frankly, with a rumored 11 to 14 players involved in the proposed deal, and many of them needing to be involved via sign-and-trade, I'd be surprised if Humphries was the only player that could hold things up.
- We should expect resolution on the Nets/Magic talks pretty soon, according to Alex Raskin of HoopsWorld, who says Brooklyn intends to move on if a deal can't be consummated in the near future.
- The Nets are willing and able to take on Jason Richardson's salary in the proposed three-team deal, tweets Chris Broussard of ESPN.com.
- Bob Finnan of the News-Herald hears that the Nets want one of the Cavaliers' first-round picks in the trade, which could be a dealbreaker for Cleveland.
- Jason Lloyd of the Akron Beacon Journal and J.A. Adande of ESPN throw some cold water on the Howard talk. A source tells Adande that "to act like it's almost done is overblown" Twitter link), while Lloyd continues to hear that there's "isn't much to it" on the Cavs' end (Twitterlinks).
- Numerous reporters, including Fred Kerber of the New York Post (Twitter link), are noting that the talks between the Nets, Magic, and other teams have "a lot of moving parts," but that progress is being made. According to Kerber, the odds are better than 50/50 that Howard is sent to the Nets.
- Magic brass are meeting this morning to discuss whether to pull the trigger on the proposed Nets/Cavs deal, tweets Alex Kennedy of HoopsWorld.
- A fourth team may be entering the mix to take MarShon Brooks, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports, who adds that up to 14 players could be involved (Twitter link).
- Although the Cavs look like the Nets' best bet to find a taker for Kris Humphries, Brooklyn has found traction on two other possible scenarios, says Wojnarowski.