NEW YORK — Baron Davis has a treacherous back (that requires surgery, I’m told, and prevents him from practicing when all other body parts are functioning normally), a ghastly contract ($62.9 million guaranteed — fully protected, no exemptions — over the next four seasons) and unsavory shot selection.
Additionally, the New Orleans Hornets guard is decidedly unhappy about still being with the team.
As Vince Carter and Tracy McGrady have attested (and qualified, in T-Mac’s case, anyway) such dejection can sometimes result in certain family members not giving their all.
If that’s not enough negativity to asphyxiate interest in acquiring Davis, may I present the definitive deal breaker: According to a West Coast source, Davis’ back is not covered by insurance.
Meaning the Hornets couldn’t buy any (to alleviate the risk of a pre-existing condition) when they maxed out his contract three years ago, yet did it anyway.
Meaning if the often-overweight Davis is forced to retire prematurely due to back problems, his team at the time will be facing a huge payout.
Considering the wear and tear on Davis’ legs, ankles and back at an early age (26 on April 13) and his physical defects in going forward, why would any team, no matter how much mad money an owner may have, take that gamble?
At best, you’re not going to get what you once saw in him, especially for a full schedule.
For a while there, over the last decade or so, owners and GMs all but allowed numerous maxed-out All-Stars to get away with being complementary pieces, for losing teams in many instances. Not anymore.
Wanting to get paid like the man but being unable to come through like the man is out of fashion.
These days, with a new collective bargaining agreement looming and the NBA looking to shrink guarantees, if a player wants to be royally compensated he had better be capable of carrying a franchise to the playoffs and beyond, or not even bother to ask.
It’s amusing to read how David Falk could impact Jalen Rose’s possible trade to the Knicks because of the agent’s established feud with Isiah Thomas.
Not only does Arn Tellem now represent Rose, but sources also disclose Tellem’s been intimately involved in negotiations with the Raptors in an effort to get his client moved, New York being a prime objective.
Despite denials out of Boston, the Celtics’ intentions regarding rising free agent Antoine Walker are indeed honorable. They also can provide enough expiring and humble contracts to meet trade requirements.
The Hawks demand rookie Al Jefferson or a first-round pick be included in the mix.
It appears that’s not going to happen. Ownership has expressed its unwillingness to re-sign Walker.
As always, the Knicks are angling to turn this into a three-way affair where they wind up cuddling with Walker.
Should the Celtics fail to make any kind of a vivid addition or subtraction (Paul Pierce is liable to be relocated no matter what management mouths) by the Feb. 24 trading deadline, Celtics VP Danny Ainge, his trigger finger twitching like never before, is almost required to trade Gary Payton while he can still get something for his free agent-in-waiting.
So much for the Age of Aquarius, where Jupiter aligns with Mars, it’s high time for the Knicks to align with a division they can win.
Dead Team Walking, which began a four-game home stand Friday with a loss to the Rockets before embarking on a six-game road trip, is a lock to get the better of no one . . . except, of course, ticket holders.
They don’t make the key shot or, at the very least, the key stop, once a franchise trademark.
I don’t want to suggest Lenny Wilkens may be on borrowed time, but his exiled assistant coach Dick Helm is no longer taking his calls.
In a time of both misinformation and too much information, quality journalism is more crucial than ever.
By subscribing, you can help us get the story right.