Trade rumors continue to swirl around Clippers guard Sam Cassell, although Jonathan Abrams of the LA Times projects the chances of a Cassell move before the deadline as minimal at this point.
Cassell, 38, is in the final year of his contract, making $6.1 million. The Clippers are hesitant to take on any contracts beyond this season. Also, it is simply not a matter of the Clippers accepting draft picks for Cassell, because the salaries would have to be in the range of another player.
Sure, that viewpoint makes a lot of sense. Except that, despite the disclaimer from Abrams, the comments made by Clips' coach Mike Dunleavy in the same article make me think that otherwise may be the case:
Coach Mike Dunleavy declined to discuss Cassell's status specifically, but did address trade talks heading into the deadline.
"You have conversations with all kinds of guys and there are interests in players and you can figure out which guys teams have interest in," he said. "Where there is smoke there is usually a fire. People floating different things out there usually have an interest. That's the way a lot of deals happen. People start throwing things against the wall and hoping it sticks."
Where there is smoke there is fire?
That sure doesn't have the sound of a coach who believes the point guard in question will be around much longer. Or, at the very least, it does have the sound of a coach who believes his team is headed toward something of a roster shake-up. Here's predicting some moves from the Clips in the month to come.
For his part, Cassell can still play and would be a nice addition to the Celtics' back-court if healthy and at the right price. Sadly, neither of those two qualifiers look like serious possibilities at this point.