Eastern Notes: Magic, Cavs, Knicks

Magic GM Rob Hennigan tells Josh Robbins of the Orlando Sentinel that he’s not actively looking to pursue deals right now: “We’re exploring all options that may improve our team…But in terms of aggressively, actively trying to do something? I would say no [we’re not].” 

In that same piece however, Robbins adds that Orlando could make at least one move before the deadline, and much of the trade speculation has revolved around Arron Afflalo, Jameer Nelson, and Glen Davis. Afflalo – whose 19.6 PPG and 5.0 FTA this season represent career bests – is likely drawing the most interest at this point.

Here’s more out of the Eastern Conference this evening:

  • Looking at what he calls a “mess” in Cleveland, Ric Bucher of the Bleacher Report revisits some of the Cavaliers’ roster decisions since Kyrie Irving‘s arrival in order to describe how they got to this point, including their decision to bypass Jonas Valanciunas in the 2011 draft, hiring Mike Brown, and failing to provide a veteran mentor for Irving. In spite of this, he believes there’s still time to right the ship, especially if the front office- led by interim GM David Griffin – can piece together a roster that compliments rather than saddles Irving.
  • Frank Isola of the New York Daily News doesn’t buy speculation about Knicks owner James Dolan considering a Carmelo Anthony trade to the Bulls, and thinks that the seven-time All-Star will ultimately stay in New York beyond this summer. Even if Anthony were to bolt, Isola doesn’t believe it’d be the end of the world; with Andrea Bargnani, Amar’e Stoudemire, and Tyson Chandler coming off the books in 2015, New York could target a star like Kevin Durant with their ample cap space (All Twitter links).
  • ESPN New York’s Ian Begley weighs in on the rumblings surrounding Iman Shumpert and Kenneth Faried from the Knicks’ persepctive, saying that acquiring Faried – though he’d be a plus – doesn’t address their backcourt needs and cuts into their 2015 cap flexibility.
  • As for the Wizards’ reported interest in Beno Udrih, Begley notes that a one-for-one swap for either Glen Rice Jr. or Al Harrington is feasible, but only from a salary-matching standpoint. Regardless, I think Begley would agree that Washington probably wouldn’t be open to giving up a 23-year-old prospect like Rice Jr. in order to solely acquire a 31-year-old backup point guard.

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