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Potential Iverson Sign and Trade Destinations

Lebron James and Allen IversonNow that we know Denver must trade Allen Iverson, here’s a list of potential ’sign-and-trade’ opportunities:

Cleveland - My personal favorite, A.I. and Lebron could play together in a way that Melo and A.I. never will. Lebron is a much better 3pt shooter and passer than Melo, opening up a lot more scoring opportunities for A.I. (and the rest of the Cavs) that simply don’t exist in Denver. Additionally, if Cleveland had A.I., their offense wouldn’t grind to a halt when Lebron went to the bench. Finally, A.I.’s defensive liabilities won’t be as significant in Cleveland as they are in Denver. Denver would gladly take Delonte West back as their PG of the future, and Cleveland has some attractive expiring contracts. Cleveland throws in a late first round pick and we’ve got enough to make a deal.

The Knicks - Anyone else think that A.I. would thrive in D’Antoni’s system? The Knicks have no use for young bigs David Lee and Renaldo Balkman (who can’t shoot well enough to play for D’Antoni), whereas Denver could put both of these players to good use. Throw in Malik Rose’s expiring contract and Denver walks away from A.I. with salary cap relief and a couple of decent young players to show for their trouble.

Orlando - Playing Jameer Nelson and A.I. in the same backcourt would be rough defensively, but think of the offensive pressure you could put on teams with A.I. driving and dishing to either Dwight Howard or Rashard Lewis. Denver could get back Carlos Arroyo and address their point guard problem, and they might even be able to snag Torkoglu. With Torkoglu gone, Rashard Lewis moves back to SF (where he’s more lethal), and Orlando is just a legit PF away from making a championship run.

Toronto - Surround A.I. with shooters and see what happens - I guarantee he puts the fear of God in opposing defenses. A.I. would pack the fans in every night in Toronto, and adding him would demonstrate to Chris Bosh just how serious Toronto is about winning. Toronto could probably unload TJ Ford on Denver, something they would have to seriously consider. Besides, what’s the down side? This team isn’t going to get much better as currently constructed.

What kind of money does it take to get A.I. under a sign and trade? I’d say $10-12 million a year for three years gets it done. While A.I. stands to make about $21 million next year, his financial future is a little murky after that. First of all, you can figure that whatever team signs A.I. to a 3 year contract in 2009 (the league requires at least a 3 year deal for any veteran) will only guarantee the first year or two. Guaranteeing all three years would be asking a team to pay a 36 year old Iverson, and that doesn’t make much sense. What’s the money for A.I. next year? Could be as high as $8 million for two years, could be as low as the mid-level exception for three. So, his future earnings following next season range from $10 to $18 million. That’s a total of $31 to $39 million, with a substantial amount of risk involved for A.I. if things don’t go his way.

Next, A.I.’s got to evaluate the risk of getting hurt next season. If, God forbid, Iverson suffered a major injury, his career is probably over. Why not play it safe and lock up some more money now? A.I.’s no dummy - he knows as well as anyone just how much he risks injury with his playing style. It’s a testament to his greatness that he hasn’t already suffered a career-ending injury.

The Bottom Line: The smart money is to lock in $30-36 million for the next three years rather than make $21 million next season and hope for the best next summer. A.I.’s people have basically admitted as much, saying that A.I. wants to mimic Vince Carter’s contract renewal last season. Of course, if A.I. wants $10-12 million a year for the next three years, he’s going to need Denver’s help with a sign and trade. There’s no way it happens via free agency.

Ballhype: hype it up!

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  1. 2 Comment(s)

  2. By GAMEPHRENIC on Jun 3, 2008 | Reply

    This must happen for AI sack. believe you me. Iverson wants a ring even more the King.

    Cleveland, Smarten up and Do what it takes.

    AI smarten up and embrace a great change.

    Nuggets will need more that AI. Cleveland has just what AI needs…A Championship Future.

    You are the Answer.

    THE KING Always need Answers.

  3. By GAMEPHRENIC on Aug 19, 2008 | Reply

    MO IS Better than AI.

    Well, we were not able to Get AI, but we go MO.

    Mo Williams, is a great PG on the verge of Being Phenom with the King Combination. AI if you decided to move to CLeveland or Not, I still respect you. Make the Money AI. But NOW, MO you must tally up and bring Home the RING and Several Rings. J.J, THE KING, BOOBIE, MO will be Definite Success for Cleveland. Z I love ya, but lets not get Injured and Big BEN, Please bring that Detroit Game everyone know about and WALLY FIND YOUR SHOT, that is all I Ask.


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