The Sonics, of course, must be feeling deja-vu, having spent the better part of a decade in "salvage" mode.
The only time one of these February Hail Mary trades actually worked was in 2003, when the Supes traded Gary Payton (whose tank was about three minutes from empty) to the Bucks for Ray Allen. And now, four years later, it's Allen's turn to take one for the team.
One place Ray-Ray has been rumored to be heading is NYC, which would be great except for one thing: the Knicks have no talent to trade:
"To read that stuff about us looking to move Ray is laughable," said Sonics GM Rick Sund. "We've had a disappointing season, but we've had big injuries to guys like Rashard Lewis and Ray. Nobody's called me about Ray because he's not available."So, where does that leave Ray-Gun? Should the Sonics ship him off somewhere in hopes he can grab a late-career ring like Payton (while trying to land anything they can in return), or should the team cling desperately to the one thing that will bring people to the game?
For Sund to pick up his phone to discuss a deal, he wants a hefty price for Allen, seventh in the NBA in scoring at 26.9 ppg entering last night. That would entail a package including a great young player, expiring contracts and draft picks. The Knicks don't have the assets.
"Nobody likes their talent," one Eastern Confernce GM said. "The problem for the Knicks is that they don't have expiring contracts to offer. They got rid of Jalen Rose, so that didn't help their cause."
from the New York Daily News
UPDATE: Ray Allen was just named to his fourth straight (and 7th overall) All-Star Game. Congrats, Ray!
I was dead-set against trading Payton and it ended up being the best move the Sonics have made the last five years. I don't want to see Ray go, but with that in mind, I'm not gonna protest if the deal is right. This attitude is fueled more by apathy than excitement, tho', at this point.
Sugar Ray's been named to the all-star team.
You beat me to it, Anon!
I'm glad for Ray; he must have been disappointed when all these other people kept getting picked ahead of him for the team as players got injured. He definitely deserved it.
Other news: According to the Seattle Times, the Sonics are going to go with Renton as their site location for the new arena (assuming Clay Bennett doesn't pull out a 6-shooter and gun down some Democrats today in Olympia).
To me, the most reasonable and likely destination for Ray is probably Chicago. They've got the pieces (Ben Gordon and some expiring contracts) that the Sonics would be interested in and it makes sense for them to try and add a legit #1 scoring option, since the East looks eminently winnable this year. I'm not sure if I'd make the deal if I were the Sonics, since Ray is a significantly better player than Gordon, but considering the money Ray still has coming to him and the fact that the team isn't going anywhere any time soon, I wouldn't be against dealing him.
I keep hearing about Chicago being a possiblity for Ray, but I really doubt it could happen, since it would really hamstring the Bulls' salary situation going into the future. In 08/09 - if the Bulls acquired Allen - they'd have these contracts to deal with:
1. Allen, $17.3 mil
2. Wallace, $14.5 mil
3. Hinrich, $10 mil
4. Deng, $10 (est)
5. Nocioni, $7 mil (est)
That's almost $60 mil in payroll right there. Even if Deng and/or Nocioni don't get that money, you're looking at $42 mil tied up in 3 guys, 2 of whom are on the wrong side of 30.
I know Sam Smith has been beating this drum for a long time, but I truly doubt the Sonics would deal Allen to the Bulls (plus, don't forget Chicago has a possible #1 overall headed their way this june).
What's everyone think of Renton as an arena site? Any truth to the rumor that Carco Park will be the practice court for visiting teams? Or that when TNT broadcasts a game Dick Stockton and Hubie Brown would be staying at the Holiday Inn on Grady Way?
I think Renton's a better way to go than Bellevue, if not financially, then for logistical reasons. I know you guys on this site are sort of anti-stadium, and I can understand it, but I'm really starting to get worried this team will leave. I'm not a Mariner or Seahawk fan, and I've never really liked the Huskies, so the Sonics are all I've got. I'm not saying break the bank to keep them in town, but as long as the money is reasonable, I'm for it.
It's not like we're anti-stadium so much, it's the fact that they're using it to black-mail us (and eliminate working class fans). The other thing is I LOVE the Key! The old colliseum's roof leaked--I got that--but what the hell's wrong with the Key? Not enough luxury boxes?! Why should I care about that? There needs to be LESS rich people at games, not MORE!
(end of rant)
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