We will not try to separate truth from fiction here. We’ll just tell you what is being reported, and we’ll see how it all shakes out tomorrow at 2 p.m. when signings can officially begin. But remember when we told you there were going to be a ton of bad contracts signed because of the stretch exception? That madness is beginning.
_ The Knicks are making a big (foolish?) move to address their need for a center. Ken Berger of CBSSports.com was the first to report the Knicks have moved into the lead to acquire Dallas center Tyson Chandler for four years at $58 million, but they will have to trade Ronny Turiaf and use their amnesty provision on Chauncey Billups in order to clear the cap space to make the move, and Billups could be claimed by another team through secondary waivers.
“He’s irate under the circumstances,” Billups’ agent, Andy Miller, told Yahoo Sports. “He felt this would be his final destination, and he was promised that he would be playing for a team that was going to be competing for the playoffs. He has no intention of being open-minded about any possible situation where a team would claim him off waivers unless it’s a team he chooses himself. Buyer beware.”
Speculation abounds that the Chandler move is a precursor to the Knicks sending Amare Stoudemire to the Hornets in a trade for Chris Paul.
But there are also reports out there of a three-way trade brewing between the Lakers, Hornets and Rockets that would send Paul to Los Angeles, with Luis Scola and Kevin Martin going to New Orleans, and Pau Gasol landing in Houston.
Other reports, from a variety of news outlets:
_ Tayshaun Prince is staying with the Detroit Pistons for four years and $27 million, and Jonas Jerebko is getting four years and $16 million to remain in Detroit.
_ Greg Oden is signing the Trail Blazers’ one-year $8.9 million qualifying offer.
_ Shane Battier is signing with the Miami Heat for $9 million over three years under the so-called mini-midlevel exception.
_ Caron Butler is getting a three-year, $24 million deal from the Los Angeles Clippers.
_ The Milwaukee Bucks are signing Mike Dunleavy for two years and $7.5 million.
_ Shannon Brown is getting a $3.5 million, one-year deal from Phoenix.
_ Eddy Curry is signing a one-year deal with the Miami Heat.