In fell swoop, the Nets finally got Dwight Howard, cleared more than $16.7 million in cap space for next year and traded away their unhappiest player.
Again, it was Woj with the news.
Charlotte is finalizing a deal to send Dwight Howard to the Brooklyn Nets for Timofey Mozgov, league sources tell ESPN. Nets will save $17M on deal in 2019-20 season, allowing them to create two max salary slots.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) June 20, 2018
The Nets also sent two second rounders and cash considerations to Charlotte, Woj reports...
Deal includes Nets sending two future second-round picks and cash to Charlotte for Howard, who has a $23.8M expiring contract. https://t.co/v4sOImIHl2— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) June 20, 2018
Woj later reported the two picks are this year’s second rounder —the 45th pick— acquired from the Bucks in the Tyler Zeller trade and the Nets own second in 2021. No word yet on how much of the Nets’ $5.1 million in cash is going to Charlotte.
The deal can’t be completed until the free agency moratorium ends on July 6.
The key for the Hornets was getting under the luxury tax threshold for this season. They were going into the season $4 million over the threshold. They save $7.7 million in the deal. Charlotte is one of the smallest markets and Michael Jordan the least rich of the NBA’s 30 owners so they had to do something.
For the Nets, it’s more about next summer when they will have their own first round pick. With Howard coming off the books, along with Jeremy Lin and DeMarre Carroll, they could have as much as $70 million in cap space next summer. The Nets do lose cap space this summer, however, but still could have between $4.4 million and $6.4 million to play with, depending on what rights they renounce.
Nets have just $33M projected on the books for 2019-20 (Crabbe $18.5M PO, Allen $2.4M TO, LeVert $2.6M TO, Whitehead $1.7M NG, 2018 1st), excluding 2018 2nds and 2019 1st. At the projected $108M salary cap, they can create $70M+ of cap room, enough for two max contracts.— Albert Nahmad (@AlbertNahmad) June 20, 2018
Howard, an eight-time All-Star, had his best season in years, averaging 16.6 points and 12.5 rebounds —fourth best in the NBA— while missing only one game. The Nets also got rid of Mozgov who in addition to being a dead weight had repeatedly criticized Kenny Atkinson and the Nets for failing to communicate with him about their decision to bench him two weeks of the season.
The deal has been in the works for at least a week, probably longer. At one point, rumors had the Nets wanting the Hornets first rounder, 11th overall, to take on Howard’s expiring deal. And Howard seemed to signal he knew about the talks, last week tweeting out video of his monster 30/30 game vs. Brooklyn in March. It seemed a bit too random.
Dedicated to the #Grind pic.twitter.com/iQQZsSDLdh— Dwight Howard (@DwightHoward) June 14, 2018
Already, NBA pundits see the trade as a coup for the Nets.
Unless I'm missing something, Charlotte took on an extra year of Moz salary (19-20) and two seconds to maybe make sure they duck the tax in 18-19? (Nets have a bunch of extra 2nds). Absolutely brutal. Great deal for the Nets. https://t.co/anvtsRGR8F— Zach Lowe (@ZachLowe_NBA) June 20, 2018
For those mistakenly thinking Dwight Howard is done: he just posted the best DREB% and lowest TOV% of his career. Major upgrade for @BrooklynNets. https://t.co/wYx2Dq7E8f— Howard Megdal (@howardmegdal) June 20, 2018
#SeanMarks dumping last two years & $32.7 million of #TimofeyMozgov deal just proves no contract is untradeable. Mozgov made it clear he was unhappy with Nets last season even before recent blog post, now question is if Howard will fit any better. He def will be more effective.— Greg Logan (@GregLogan1) June 20, 2018
There are a number of ironies here. It was Mitch Kupchak, the new Hornets GM, who signed Mozgov to his big albatross of a contract two years ago before he was let go by the Lakers. And of course, the Nets FINALLY get Howard after trying for him multiple times over the past seven years.
The downside for the Nets is obvious. Despite his production —and star power— Howard keeps getting moved because of locker room issues. This is his sixth team in six years. He played for the Magic, Lakers, Rockets (with Jeremy Lin), Hawks and Hornets.
The other issue is how much the addition of Howard will affect development of Jarrett Allen, the 20-year-old big man the Nets are so high on. Can they play together or as a tag team tandem?
- Hornets agree to trade Dwight Howard to Nets - Adrian Wojnarowski - ESPN
- Trade grades: Who wins the Nets-Hornets Dwight Howard deal? - Kevin Pelton - ESPN
- The Dwight Howard Trade Makes Brooklyn a Sleeping Giant - Michael Pina - Vice Sports
- Dwight Howard has been traded again, and his value has never been lower - Kristian Winfield - SB Nation
- Charlotte Hornets Center Dwight Howard Traded to Brooklyn Nets - Marc Stein - New York Times
- Nets trading for Dwight Howard in NBA stunner - Brian Lewis - New York Post
- Nets acquire Dwight Howard from Hornets for Timofey Mozgov, draft picks, source confirms - Greg Logan - Newsday
- Nets agree to acquire Dwight Howard from Hornets for Timofey Mozgov, draft picks: report - Daniel Popper - New York Daily News
- Brooklyn Nets trade for Dwight Howard, turn attention to NBA Draft - Chris Iseman - The Record
- Dwight deal designed to enhance Nets’ future - John Torenli - Brooklyn Daily Eagle
- AP source: Hornets agree to trade Howard to Nets for Mozgov - Steve Reed - AP
- Hornets agree to trade Dwight Howard to Nets for Timofey Mozgov, picks - Jeff Zillgitt - USA Today
- Report: Hornets Trade Dwight Howard To Nets For Mozgov - Ryne Nelson - SLAM
- Hornets reportedly finalizing trade to send Dwight Howard to Nets for Timofey Mozgov, draft picks - Chris Barnewall - CBS Sports
- Report: Dwight Howard to Be Traded to Nets from Hornets for Timofey Mozgov - Timothy Rapp - Bleacher Report
- Dwight Howard Reaches Sad, Strange New Stage Of His Career - Patrick Redford - Deadspin
- Hornets trading center Dwight Howard to Brooklyn Nets for a Mitch Kupchak legacy - Rick Bonnell - Charlotte Observer
- How Dwight Howard’s trade to Nets affects Hornets’ Nic Batum, Cody Zeller, James Borrego - Rick Bonnell - Charlotte Observer
- Here’s why the Charlotte Hornets were so desperate to get rid of Dwight Howard - Scott Fowler - Charlotte Observer