Atlantic Notes: Smith, Nets, Sixers, Walker

News broke today that the Knicks are trying to find a trade partner willing to take on the often controversial J.R. Smith. It doesn’t sound like it’ll be easy for the club to find a suitor, but Knicks Journal’s Keith Schlosser writes it would be “addition by subtraction” if the team is able to deal Smith, even if they don’t get any real assets in return. Schlosser notes that Tim Hardaway looks poised to take on a bigger role for the Knicks, and sending out Smith would give the rookie guard more minutes to showcase his impressive skills.

Here’s a look at the rest of tonight’s news from around the Atlantic Division:

  • The Nets aren’t expected to use the disabled player exception they were granted yesterday, reports Fred Kerber of the New York Post. Kerber hears from a source that it’s “unlikely” Brooklyn ends up using the exception since for each $1MM the club would spend on adding a player, the team would end up paying $4MM in luxury taxes.
  • The 76ers are not going to be relocating to New Jersey, writes Mike Sielski from the Philly Inquirer. Rumors circulated about a potential move earlier this season, and fans became nervous that the rumors may be coming to fruition when the club revealed via press release that it was set to deliver a “major announcement” tomorrow. However, sources tell Sielski that the team won’t be leaving Philadelphia anytime soon, and the announcement will simply introduce a new sponsorship deal.
  • Ty Walker of the D-League’s Main Red Claws has drawn interest from a few clubs, including the 76ers. The defensive-minded center went undrafted out of Wake Forest in 2012 and received interest as a possible training camp invitee last summer. Shams Charania of RealGM has the details.
  • In his latest piece for the Boston Herald, Steve Bulpett reveals that although Doc Rivers isn’t calling plays for the Celtics anymore, part of the veteran coach will always remain in Boston. “It was just hard for me. I’m not sure anyone can understand,” said Rivers on his departure from the C’s, “I fell in love with where I was at, but after the season I realized I just didn’t want to get into the whole rebuilding thing.

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