clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

NETS GET DWIGHT HOWARD FOR TIMOFEY MOZGOV, TWO SECONDS, CASH

New, comments

This is a developing story —oh boy, is it!— that will be updated throughout the day.

NBA on ESPN

And BOOM!

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.

The Nets also sent two second rounders and cash considerations to Charlotte, Woj reports...

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.

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.

Already, NBA pundits see the trade as a coup for the Nets.

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?