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Nets push Teletović to take mini mid-level so Howard, other doors open up

Jul 5, 2012, 3:47 PM EDT

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The Nets like to make things hard on themselves. But they apparently have just cleared one more hurdle to making the very difficult trade to bring Dwight Howard to Brooklyn a little more possible.

They may have reached a deal to get Mirza Teletović to take a smaller offer than they verbally agreed to, which will keep the hard salary cap they nearly imposed on themselves away, according to ESPN’s Larry Coon and CBSSports.com’s Ken Berger. Removing that cap makes the finances of a Dwight Howard trade possible.

This gets complex, so stick with me.

Tuesday it was announced the Nets had agreed to terms with European stretch four Mirza Teletović for the $5 million mid-level exception for three years. Something they could offer.

However, because with salary and “cap holds” (slots reserved for their free agents to re-sign) the Nets were over the salary cap ($58 million) and below the luxury tax line ($70 million), so on July 11 when they signed Teletovic to that deal they would activate the “apron” or hard salary cap in the new CBA, which is at $74.3 million. This provision was put in the CBA at the insistence of smaller market owners who didn’t like to see the high-spending teams (Lakers, Celtics, Knicks etc..) keep adding players via the mid-level exception every season with impunity.

If the Nets had that hard cap there was really no way to pull off a Howard trade — Howard will make $19 million, Joe Johnson makes $19 million, Deron Williams $17 million, Gerald Wallace $10 million and throw in the rookies and you have a Nets roster at about $70 million and still needing to add at least seven players. Even at minimum deals you can’t really pulls that off in the NBA, not with any kind of quality.

However, the Nets are close to getting Teletović to take the mini mid-level of $3 million. If they do that, there is no hard cap triggered and the Nets can take on more salary back in a Dwight Howard trade. Or really make any other large move.

Now, that’s just the math of it. The Nets still need to convince the Magic that the package they have been rejecting for nearly a year — Brook Lopez, Kris Humphries, MarShon Brooks and some picks — is now good enough for them. And to make it work, they need at least a third team to take on Humphries and what likely is an oversized new deal.

So good luck with that. But at least the math could be there now.

  1. ccshocktalk - Jul 5, 2012 at 3:58 PM

    Here is some easier math…

    1 cry baby + a year of bull $hit lines + flat out lies + public demands = nobody gives a $hit where he goes anymore…can someone do the math for Dwight and let him know how much Rosetta Stone costs so he can at least say hi in Chinese before the Magic send his rights to a team in Beijing.

    • gmen4life33 - Jul 5, 2012 at 6:18 PM

      You might not care, but the Nets and Nets fans do.

      On a side note, any doubt the Russian Billionaire told his fellow foreigner “take the mini mid-level, even though we agreed on the full. I’ll just give you the difference in a briefcase full of cash”.

  2. eltrilliardo - Jul 5, 2012 at 3:58 PM

    Ugh.

    Just get it over with already. If only so that I can hate Chicago’s ultra-conservative, afraid-to-spend, profit-first mentality even more.

    Hey Brooklyn, we got an amazing talent at PF available – Carlos Boozer… we’ll give him up for a 2024 second round pick. Eh? Eh? Okay, we’ll throw in Rip Hamilton’s mask and the rights to Keith Bogans’ 30% corner 3 pt shot.

    • berto55 - Jul 5, 2012 at 4:37 PM

      Agreed, although not sure why everyone wants to get rid of Boozer. IF Rose ever gets back to what he was that will be a year from now (last year of Deng’s deal and they probably let him walk). Then what do you have? Not much. At least Boozer keeps them competitive and you’re going to pay him anyway. Boozer has done exactly what he’s always done, shoot jumpers, rebound, and disappear on defense. Not sure why everybody in Chicago but me is shocked by this. He was the best the Bulls could do that summer, if they signed nobody everyone would really be talking about how cheap Reinsdorf is.

      • eltrilliardo - Jul 5, 2012 at 4:41 PM

        Agreed… they occasionally do spend the moneys. However, they were so desperate to get someone, they gave him more than he was worth.

        With them too cheap to amnesty, we’re stuck… Without him, we could at least go after the more glaring SG spot.

  3. fiyeaglesfiy - Jul 5, 2012 at 4:23 PM

    …so should we just assume he’s getting money under the table then?

  4. pl4tinum514 - Jul 5, 2012 at 4:35 PM

    Is Lopez/Brooks/Humphries & 3 #1s really worth Howard? I say hell no… Just keep those guys… they will improve playing with Johnson/Wallace/Williams anyway…

    • eltrilliardo - Jul 5, 2012 at 4:53 PM

      Yes. By all means, yes. I hate the guy, I hate the Nets, I hate Brooklyn and Jay Z specifically… but I’m not foolish enough to think that any of the guys mentioned above get you to the Finals. Howard might.

      1) With Howard, those #1s are now pick 25+, and essentially worthless.
      2) Humphries…. Enough said.
      3) Lopez – see above.

      • akmgiants - Jul 5, 2012 at 6:03 PM

        brooklyn hates you back

  5. exibitsman - Jul 5, 2012 at 5:23 PM

    D12 will be a Brooklyn Net. in the next 48hrs all they have to do is finalize all the details.!!!!!!!

    • marcusfitzhugh - Jul 5, 2012 at 8:42 PM

      Do you mean details, like finding actual players to trade?

      Orlando may not do this deal for two reasons

      First, Orlando management is not going to try and help Dwight. If at all possible, they will send him out west.
      Second, Jersey’s offer stinks –

      Brook played a TOTAL of 5 games last year because he broke a bone in his foot during preseason.
      Humphries is a good rebounder and average in everything else.
      MarShon Brooks is a first year player who didn’t stand out.

      Two average starters and a guy with a broken foot from a team that finished DEAD LAST in the Atlantic.

  6. Mr. Wright 212 - Jul 5, 2012 at 5:42 PM

    Billy King woke up from his stupor, because if they didn’t fix this, they would be STUCK — as they wouldn’t be able to exceed the luxury tax threshold to make a deal for Howard. THat’s part of the new CBA.

  7. saint1997 - Jul 5, 2012 at 11:04 PM

    I’m a nets fan and tbh i actually don’t want Dwight! Who would?! What a crybaby whinged. Leave the league please

  8. sauvy2324 - Jul 6, 2012 at 12:28 AM

    I just hate Dwight Howard. I agree he has taken over lebrons crown as the most hated villain in the NBA. He’s a teenage girl that cant make up her mind up, lies to those closest to her, flip flops the flavor of the month and even the freshman think she looks absolutely ridiculous. I wish players had absolutely no power as to where they went…ship him to the kings or bobcats. Be man, suck it up and respect the game and business of basketball. You’re making Carmelo look like a class A citizen.

  9. bknowledge - Jul 6, 2012 at 3:44 AM

    Orlando gets:

    Bynum and no salary relief and no draft picks…
    or
    Brook, Humphries, Marshon, 3 1rst round draft picks, and salary cap relief…
    or
    They let him walk for nothing…
    or
    Miracle…

    Let the man go where he wants to go. Its good for the league. It will be good for the league to have a great team in NYC, a team that is capable of competing with Miami and Chicago and L.A. and OKC and Boston and Portland (especially if they get Hibbert)…and whoever else surprises us…

    Nets should offer to trade Lopez as is (last year of his deal- he’ll be Orlando’s free agent). Marshon as is. 3 1rst round draft picks. Sign and trade Humphries to a 1 year deal worth too much- gonna have to be about 15 million dollars- enough salary so we can take back Dwight’s and JRich’s salaries (26 mil combined)…

    This way Humphries is pretty good trade chip for Orlando with a huge expiring deal..
    They get the free agent rights to Brook and maybe that works out.
    They get marshon who was a nice rookie.
    They get three first round picks…
    They get some salary relief…

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