As the trade deadline has officially passed, NBA rumors are now starting up with regards to recently waived NBA players. While guard Deron Williams was recently part of rumors to head to the Cleveland Cavaliers, it seems that another recently waived player, center Andrew Bogut, is also considering that as his top destination. However, the San Antonio Spurs are among four other teams who also have a shot at getting Bogut onto their rosters. In addition, the Golden State Warriors seem like they are the frontrunners to sign recently-released Los Angeles Lakers guard Jose Calderon.
On Monday night, ESPN Senior Writer Marc Stein reported on the latest transactions and rumors around the league. Stein noted that the Lakers and 76ers had both completed their buyouts of Calderon and Bogut respectively, so they’re officially released to the pool of players available to sign. The frontrunners for the two stars are also the frontrunners to win the NBA Championship this postseason: Golden State and Cleveland.
Calderon, in his 11th year out of Spain, is averaging just 3.3 points, 2.1 assists, and 1.8 rebounds a game this season. His career numbers feature averages of 9.7 points, 6.3 assists, and 2.6 rebounds. After averaging over 28 minutes a game last season for the Knicks in 72 starts, he’s gone to averaging just 12.2 minutes per contest with Los Angeles. Calderon has played in a total of 24 games for the season and started 11. In order for Golden State to add him to their lineup, he’ll need to clear waivers by Wednesday as of 5 p.m. Eastern Time.
While New York Knicks guard Brandon Jennings was also waived on Monday and it was said that the Warriors would have preferred Jennings over Calderon. However, the sources indicate that “the process was already too far along with Calderon,” so it appears he’s just about a done deal to go to Golden State. The Warriors would make for Calderon’s sixth team in his 12 NBA seasons. The 6-foot-3 guard spent his first seven seasons with Toronto, went to Detroit, back to Toronto for a season, and then played for Dallas, New York, and most recently played for the Lakers.
With Bogut, the expectation according to ESPN‘s Ramona Shelburne is that he’ll sign with the Eastern Conference’s top team, the Cleveland Cavaliers. That would give the Cavs their second pickup over the past week, as the team also was recently said to be signing former Mavs guard Deron Williams, another released star. Bogut has career averages of 10 points, 8.9 boards, and 1.6 blocks a game, but is averaging just three points and 8.3 rebounds this current season. However, he’d provide many contending teams with a solid backup center to bring in during key stretches of games in the playoffs.
While Cleveland is considered where the former Warriors star will end up, there are four other playoff-bound teams which Bogut could sign with. According to Sportsrageous, they include the Utah Jazz, San Antonio Spurs, and Houston Rockets in the Western Conference, as well as the Boston Celtics in the Eastern Conference. All four teams are looking as if they’ll make it into the postseason and could use the addition of roster help to compete against the top tier squads.
The former No. 1 pick by the Milwaukee Bucks in 2005 was part of their team through 2012, before being traded to the Golden State Warriors along with Stephen Jackson. While with the Warriors, Bogut became a key part of their successful playoff runs and was a member of the championship team in 2015.
Last summer, he was traded by the Warriors along with a future second-round pick to the Mavericks. The move was made to free up salary space in order to bring Kevin Durant to Golden State. The longtime Bucks and Warriors center went on to suffer a right knee injury this past December and then a right hamstring strain in January, causing him to miss a total of 17 games. Just last week, he was traded to the Philadelphia 76ers along with Justin Anderson, with the Mavs acquiring Nerlens Noel in the exchange.
Andrew Bogut would be a key addition to any of the aforementioned rosters due to his veteran experience and playmaking abilities as a big man. He’s proven to have the skills to make smart plays from the high post and provide defensive intensity, when healthy. His health will be the biggest question mark going forward with Bogut, but the Cavs seem like the team ready to make the gamble to help LeBron and company improve their chances at another title.
Adding both Deron Williams and Andrew Bogut seems to be just the sort of roster upgrades that LeBron had been requesting during his media talks over the past months, and his prayers seem to be ready to be answered via waivers rather than trades.
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