James Harden has reportedly added the Bucks to the teams he’d be willing to play for but acquiring the perennial All-Star guard would be very complicated even if Milwaukee wants him, as Eric Nehm of The Athletic points out. Milwaukee can’t move nearly half of its players on guaranteed contracts since the Bucks added six players via trades or free agent signings. Most of those players aren’t eligible to be dealt until late February. The Bucks’ proximity to the hard cap also makes it nearly impossible to trade multiple players for Harden unless a third party is involved or Houston tosses in some minimum salary players.
We have more from around the Eastern Conference:
- While the league has trended toward smaller lineups in recent seasons, the Cavaliers could go with a jumbo lineup at times, Chris Fedor of the Cleveland Plain Dealer writes. Coach J. B. Bickerstaff plans to utilize Larry Nance Jr., Kevin Love and Andre Drummond in certain situations. “We expect there are going to be times where we throw that big lineup out there,” Bickerstaff said.
- Sixers center Joel Embiid has bonded with assistant coach Dan Burke, who ripped him as a Pacers assistant last season. Burke claimed then that Embiid “gets away with a bunch of (stuff).” Embiid doesn’t harbor any grudges, according to ESPN’s Tim Bontemps. “I think he’s a great guy,” Embiid said. “We’ve actually been very close since we got here. I think him and the whole coaching staff is going to kind of look at me to kind of be the driving force of the defense.”
- Tony Snell is currently not with the Hawks, since he’s self-isolating, Chris Kirschner of The Athletic tweets. He hasn’t tested positive for COVID-19 but was deemed a close contact to someone who did. Snell was acquired from the Pistons this offseason.