SH Blog: Knicks could struggle to trade J.R. Smith; Sixers back off of Thaddeus Young negotiations

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gregodenIt’s been an eventful few days in the NBA.

First, the Warriors got better and the Celtics got worse, which seems like a win-win.

Then Greg Oden played in an NBA game, which makes me pretty dang happy.

SH Blog: Knicks and Clippers have internally discussed Melo for Griffin; Cavs might keep Bynum

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curryIf you haven’t been watching Golden State basketball recently, why? Seriously, why? They’re just as fun to watch as they were last year, only now they play defense as well (fourth in defensive efficiency). They just knocked off two of the East’s three decent teams in the space of two nights.

The Blazers have made the West a little more crowded at the top, but Steph Curry and Co. are showing that they belong right up there with those top teams. With Chris Paul out for a little while, this could be their chance to surge past the Clippers in the Pacific Division.

SH Blog: Chris Paul out 3-5 Weeks; Trade Talk Heats Up; Nash Hopes To Return Soon; How Valuable Is Andre Iguodala?

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gasolAs the NBA season finds itself some 30-games into the season, we are starting to get an idea of who’s who around the league.

For the most part, we know who will be around to contend in April, May and June. But the question today is who will be a real threat? And who will assert themselves over the next two months while Russell Westbrook and Chris Paul are sidelined.

Yes, Paul (separated shoulder) is out, too — for those of you who didn’t stay up for the late games.

Magic Waive Hedo Turkoglu, Move $5 Million Under Cap

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Hedo_Turkoglu_MagicThe Orlando Magic on Friday waived Hedo Turkoglu, who likely will become a free agent.

Turkoglu was in the final year of a contract paying him $12 million this season. However, only $6 million was guaranteed. GM Rob Hennigan saved the other $6 million by waiving Turkoglu by Jan. 7, the day all contracts become fully guaranteed.

Waiving Turkoglu moves the Magic approximately $5 million under the cap and makes them a potential player leading up to the trading deadline as a facilitator in a three-team deal or taking back more salary in a conventional trade.

Turkoglu has not spent of of this season with the Magic, who are rebuilding with young players. The sides were unable to agree on a buyout, and Hennigan was unable to trade Turkoglu’s contract for an asset.

Bernucca: Cap Room, Exceptions, Expiring Deals: Who Has What as NBA Trading Season Begins

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220px-Rudy_GayThe NBA holiday shopping season is upon us a little early this year.

It usually starts December 15, the first day players who were signed in the offseason become eligible to be traded. But after seeing Rudy Gay’s immovable contract somehow sent from Toronto to Sacramento, it is clear that shopping season is under way. 

Come next Sunday, NBA general managers will have increased flexibility when looking to improve their rosters, which was Kings GM Pete D’Alessandro’s approach in acquiring Gay, or their payroll, which was Raptors GM Masai Ujiri’s approach in moving him.

In addition to the Raptors-Kings deal, we’ve already heard reports that the Houston Rockets are telling teams reserve center Omer Asik is on the block and they are looking to move him between Sunday and Dec. 19, which is the deadline for any player acquired for Asik to be rerouted before the trade deadline on Feb. 20.

So Rockets GM Daryl Morey may make two deals. Or he may make one deal. Or he may not deal at all.

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