Two executives from other teams aren’t sold on the idea that the Bulls are done gauging the trade market for Pau Gasol in the wake of injuries to Joakim Noah and Nikola Mirotic, reports K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune, who adds that the Bulls want to re-sign Gasol this summer but at a limited price. Gasol said today that he doesn’t view a trade as likely but wouldn’t be completely shocked if the Bulls dealt him, adding that he wished he had a no-trade clause in his contract, notes Nick Friedell of ESPNChicago.com (ESPN Now link). Gasol also expressed a desire for a no-trade provision in his next contract, which he could only get if he signs with the Grizzlies or Lakers or re-signs with the Bulls on a one-year deal. Formal no-trade clauses are only available to veterans of eight or more years (Gasol qualifies there) who sign with teams they’ve spent at least four seasons with. Gasol is in just year No. 2 with Chicago, but anyone who re-signs with his team on a one-year deal, or a two-year deal with a player option, can veto trades. See more from around the league:
- Harrison Barnes has fans within the Timberwolves organization, as Darren Wolfson of 1500 ESPN Twin Cities says in a podcast, though it’s not entirely certain that Minnesota will pursue the soon-to-be restricted free agent. Barnes engendered an “undercurrent of disenchantment” within the Warriors when he stayed for as long as he did with a sprained ankle that prompted him to miss 16 games this season, as Monte Poole of CSNBayArea.com reported earlier. Wolves GM Milt Newton has no guarantee of running the team’s front office beyond this season after inheriting the authority from the late Flip Saunders.
- Kevin Garnett is “no lock” to play next season, as many people close to him aren’t sure whether or not he intends to do so, Wolfson says in the same podcast. In July, Jerry Zgoda of the Star Tribune raised the specter of Garnett moving into a front office position with the Timberwolves next season if he’s not healthy enough to play. Garnett, who turns 40 in May, has appeared in 38 of Minnesota’s 50 games this year and is set to make $8MM in 2016/17 on the two-year contract he signed this past summer.
- Soon-to-be free agent Al Horford said he feels like Atlanta is home and added that he isn’t focused on trade talk as the February 18th deadline looms, observes Chris Vivlamore of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. That echoes the mostly glowing remarks Horford made about Atlanta and the Hawks organization to Marc J. Spears of Yahoo Sports, and though the Hawks want to-resign him, it’s unclear whether they’re willing to shell out the max contract he’ll be seeking, according to Spears. Horford also said to Spears that other cities probably offer more business and marketing opportunities than Atlanta does, and the Hawks are expected to listen to offers for Horford out of concern that he might walk in free agency this summer, Spears reports.