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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The Bernucca List – Edition 16

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Last week’s winner was Brendan Hoover, who correctly identified The Bernucca List as “active second-round picks who have made an All-Star team.”

Brendan answered correctly within 10 minutes of the post in the middle of a weekday morning, which makes one wonder what his PER is at his job.

That can be explored at another time. We have a new list below, which has three common denominators.

First entirely correct answer gets a mention next week. You can answer in the comments section or send me a Tweet.

The Bernucca List

Mark Aguirre
Carmelo Anthony
Larry Bird
World B. Free
Billy Knight
Karl Malone
Moses Malone
Jerry Stackhouse
Peja Stojakovic
David Thompson
Kiki Vandeweghe