Yesterday I was dumbfounded that the Clippers had traded Camby without being able to package Sebastian Telfair and his player option for next year into the deal. I know Kevin Pritchard is a great GM and never would have agreed to such a deal, so I wondered why the Clippers didn’t just wait to find someone who would agree to the deal.
With Telfair off the books this summer, the team could trade or renounce the rights to Al Thornton and put themselves in a position to be able to offer one of the marquee free agents a max deal.
Well, it appears Clippers GM Mike Dunleavy Sr. had one more trick up his sleeve, as the team has reportedly agreed to join the Cavaliers and Wizards in their deal, where the Clippers unload their biggest contract liabilities without surrendering any assets.
Cleveland gets Telfair and Antwan Jamison from the Wizards.
The Wizards get Thornton and Big Z from the Cavs, along with a first-round draft choice from the Cavs.
And the Clippers? All the Clippers have to do is take back Drew Gooden from Washington.
It’s been reported that the Clippers would buy out Gooden, thereby allowing him to sign with a contender for the playoff run, and that’s fine. We need those minutes to go to DeAndre Jordan for the rest of this year and Gooden wouldn’t have allowed Jordan to get consistent minutes.
So, looking towards the future as always, the team’s core this summer will be Baron at PG, Eric Gordon at SG, Blake Griffin at PF and Chris Kaman at C.
If only there was a SF-type who would be worthy of a maximum deal and would be interested to coming to one of the largest media markets in the world…
***Update: David Aldridge of NBA.com/TNT says the Clippers do not plan to buy out Gooden. This is alright with me. If DeAndre needs to come off the bench, I’d rather it be behind Gooden than Craig Smith.