From Chad Ford for TrueHoop:
“We just unloaded 2000 plus words of the latest draft talk on our NBA Draft Blog today. We covered the DeMarcus Cousins-Derrick Favors workout in Sacramento and gave the latest updates on what the Wizards, Sixers, Nets, Timberwolves and Kings were all up to. As we get closer to the draft the info just keeps rolling in. Here’s a few bonus nuggets that came in after the blog published :
A number of NBA sources are telling me that the Denver Nuggets are in the hunt for a Top 10 pick. Nuggets GM Mark Warkentein has been calling around trying to gauge interest in teams selling the pick. According to sources Warkentein is offering Ty Lawson for the pick. A Nuggets source said they are looking for a big man to fill up their front line. Several bigs including Cole Aldrich, Ed Davis, Ekpe Udoh, Patrick Patterson, Daniel Orton and Hassan Whiteside could be there at 10. Butler’s Gordon Hayward is getting serious looks from the Clippers, Jazz, Pacers and Bucks. But could he go even higher than No. 8? The Sacramento Kings (drafting at No. 5) have been pushing to get Hayward in and will have Hayward and Nevada’s Luke Babbitt in for a workout on June 23rd, the day before the draft. Could the Kings take Hayward ahead of the two guys we have highest on their board — DeMarcus Cousins and Greg Monore? Probably not. But the Kings have been talking to several teams about moving down in the draft. The Kings are looking for veterans and have been shopping Andres Nocioni and Francisco Garcia to see if they can get any takers. If they do move down a few notches, both players could be intriguing.”
Got all that? In a recent article on NBA.com, General Manager Neil Olshey addressed some questions on the Clippers moving the eighth pick in the draft:
“I’ve had a few of those,” Olshey said of approaches for the eighth pick. “It’s very preliminary. Guys are checking in to see if the pick’s in play at all.”
If Denver is indeed inquiring about moving up in the draft, pick eight wouldn’t be a bad place to start. If the Clippers could lock up a young, talented point guard for the future in exchange for pick eight, that’s something they have to consider.
Something else to consider in this equation, as always, is money. Whoever the Clippers select at pick eight will be slotted to make 2.13 million in their first year, while Ty Lawson will make only 1.43 million. It sounds like a small chunk of change, but since the max contract amount has not been definitively declared due to all the variables involved, that 700,000 dollars in cap room could end up making a difference.
The Clippers may not bite on anything before the draft, but it appears as if Neil Olshey is definitely listening.