Monday, June 15th, 2009 at 12:00 pm  |  71 responses

‘Shaq to Cleveland’ Kicks Off Trade Rumor Season

And so, the madness begins: “Talk between the Phoenix Suns and Cleveland Cavaliers of a trade that would have Shaquille O’Neal playing with LeBron James next season has not gone beyond the preliminary stages and no deal is imminent, two executives with knowledge of the discussions told ESPN The Magazine’s Chris Broussard. The clubs have not spoken within the past few days, but sources say talks of a possible trade involving O’Neal, Ben Wallace and Sasha Pavlovic never completely died after it was first discussed in February.”

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  • http://www.alllooksame.com Tarzan Cooper

    its going to happen

  • Tenorca

    The Suns ownership continues to mock its fans. Pavlovic and Wallace are straight up bad.

  • http://twitter.com/NotebookNick thesubwayconnection

    If I’m LeBron, I don’t let this happen. Hell, if I’m Nash or Amare, I don’t let this happen. Ben Wallace is finished. Pavlovic isn’t an upgrade, either.

  • Stan

    I like what the other guy said, CAVs get Shaq and sign Odom or Ariza, or even Turk.

  • http://SLAMONLINE.com Spaceship Jay

    YES! Shaq will go to Cleveland, pull his usual and habitual I “I WANT the ball at all times-whowever is at the perimeter is my little sidekick-yet I’ll never workout or practice at my full potential” act, and Bron will be on a first class flight… To the Knicks. IT IS WRITTEN!

  • Stormfya CLE

    I think it will happen. Wallace may seem washed up, but if on the same team with Amare, it could work out for the Suns. Sasha would fit in on that team and it might help him find his shot. I want to see this deal get done.

  • Chris

    I heard its more likely he goes to the bulls for Deng, Tim Thomas, and J. James. Thats the best scenario for the suns and I believe they could be contenders if they draft the right player. Oh yea…I like J-Rich but he needs to go.

  • http://www.laumol.nl/weblog Laumol

    Phoenix needs to get more for O’Neal than Big Ben and little Sacha. In fact, nobody -besides LeBron- looks interesting for a trade.

  • rainman10

    I would love Deng on the Suns. I think they drafted him in the first place.

  • http://www.manutd.com Z

    when there’s smoke… this has been going for too long, it’ll happen. if cavs can get shaq + charlie v (who apparently is lobbying to go to cleveland)… that’s a complete frontcourt, little bit of everything. shaq, charlie v and j. kidd. that’s my wishlist. mo could be our jason terry. if we get those guys, we can let andy walk.

  • http://www.manutd.com Z

    phx is not making this trade for basketball reasons. sorry juks lol. wally and sasha make perfect sense from a financial perspective. amare can be had too. i’m just not sure i’d invest top dollars in him, losing doesn’t seem to bother him that much as long as he gets his. that’s the feeling i get from him. he’s more concerned with his ranking amongst nba stars than ‘ships. shaq would be great for cleveland because you know he’s DYING to one-up kob.

  • http://shawn-kemps-offspring.blogspot.com Cheryl

    I bet Bron and DWade are having discussions about this one.

  • http://www.hibachi20.blogspot.com BETCATS

    Shaq is just gonna opt out. His loyalty is to Kobe….

  • http://SLAMONLINE.com Spaceship Jay

    @ Cheryl; And Wade is giving Bron a stern talking to about mid-season let downs, full season meltdowns, and fools gold. Sexy heavy fools gold. Please pull the trigger on this deal.

  • http://www.realcavsfans.com Anton

    To quote Obama signing stem-cell legislation: “Ahhh hell yeeeeah”.

  • http://www.realcavsfans.com Anton

    @Z: true that sh!t (minus Turkey talks). also, we gots to get us some Childress to defend the perimeter better.
    Charlie V
    Mo Williams
    King Crab
    Delonte West (who wins 6th man of the year)
    Andy (dude’s coming back)
    Joe Smith
    The ghost of Daniel Gibson
    + random scrubs

  • http://double-technical.blogspot.com Zee!

    The big Cavalier?

  • truthteller

    You wish! And what will that do? If it happens is it supposed to make LeBron stay?

  • http://www.hibachi20.blogspot.com BETCATS

    Anton: Where is Zydrunnususnsunus Ilkaskususususususususususususus in your plans

  • niQ

    i don’t know. this would mean little to no playing time for big Z (or they ship him off somewhere). and, although shaq showed improvement this season, he doesnt have Z’s range nor FT%.

  • Damien Thorne

    That would be funny IF Shaq won a championship with Lebron. Then Lebron would also have to deal with the he cannot win without Shaq BS that Kobe did. Life has an odd sense of humor sometimes.

  • http://www.realcavsfans.com Anton

    Shaqtus would get 25mins, Z would get 15-20. Z’s positives can be utilized in a shorter time frame and he would be a great back-up center. But when it’s the 4th quarter or playoffs, Diesel gets more touches than R.Kelly in a Chuck E. Cheese.

  • jj

    If lebron gets shaq it could be like shaq and kobe in the olden laker days. If shaq can play like he did this year than he will be a great upgrade.


    shaq should demand this trade 2 be done and then recruit sheed and AI to sign with the cavs…instant finals appearance!!!

  • Teddy-the-Bear

    Wow @ KOBESBESTFRIEND: That would be fridgin’ sweet. But I doubt they can afford all those dudes.

  • http://slam comets

    it still does not get the cavs past a healthy celtics or orlando.. shaq would crowd the lane, he still cant play pick and roll defense and it does not fit cavs unbalance offense..

  • http://shawn-kemps-offspring.blogspot.com Cheryl


  • vmcb

    Seriously? Big Ben and Sasha? This is disgusting. Don’t do it, Kerr. Although we all know you will, you sumbich.

  • vmcb

    Big Ben and Sasha for Shaq is disgusting. Don’t do it, Kerr. Although we all know you will, you sumb!tch.

  • jessdogg

    Damien those comparisons would never surface. Shaq is a 38 year old man that will be a third option on a already good team with the reining MVP of the league. when he played with kobe he was 28, an MVP and the teams first option. you got nothing to worry about.

  • Kamran

    Cavs Starting 5 Next Year

    1. Mo Williams

    2. Delonte West

    3. Queen James

    4. Shaq

    5. However you spell his name

  • http://www.oprah.com doyouwantmore

    I thought Lebron staying with the Cavs depended on them building a team around him, not putting together a one-season team to get a championship. The Big Mercenary is a one-shot deal. Cavs need a long-term superstar sidekick for Lebron in order to make him stay.

  • http://www.nba.com JE

    Kamran: Under no circumstances does Shaq play the 4.
    doyouwantmore: Shaq will be a one-year thing, and the next year is 2010. That’s when they’ll get the long-term superstar.

  • http://www.slamonline.com wayno

    Kamran – I’m pretty sure Shaq would never ever ever ever ever…ever play the 4 spot…ever…nice try though.

  • http://www.twitter.com/Th3_R3al_Chris Young Chris MP3

    If they get Shaq and sign Turk, Ariza, Odom, or Artest, it will get UGLY and Lebron will likely re-sign.

  • http://www.twitter.com/Th3_R3al_Chris Young Chris MP3

    Or Rasheed. That would be crazy.

  • http://www.triplejunearthed.com/dacre Dacre

    I’m expecting the Suns to go get me a 58 win season this year and a trip to the WCF… I just cant fathom why Steve Kerr is so hell bent on destroying the most entertaining franchise in the NBA over the past 3-5 years?!? What gives…? He’s THE worst executive authority in pro-sports outside of anyone named Isaiah he’s as effective as management as he was on the court and he’ll probably hang around just as long too….
    I want Nash out of Phoenix.

  • Flight

    This has disaster written all over it. Consider James a knick if this deal goes down.

  • http://www.manutd.com Z

    ya’ll are crazy if you’re saying that shaq would disrupt cleveland’s offense. cleveland has no offense. they’ve been lacking a true low post presence since bron got there basically. shaq + charlie v. j kidd if he comes for cheap and a long swing man off the bench to d-up. i think they should actually give a chance to kinsey… i like what i saw from him in limited minutes.

  • Kingjab

    Shaq just wants to piggyback another rising star to a tittle just like he did to dwayne wade!th guy is faded..c’mon we all witnessed how D-12 owned him for 2 games during Suns vs. magic!Shaq used to be a problm,he earned respect for his dominace in the paint but right now he aint nuthin but a “big ol monkey off Kobe’s back”!!

  • seven deuce

    That team is a testament to just how great Lebron is, but I never believed they’d get to the Finals. Heck of a good year, but why not get Shaq? He’d be a true low post threat, while at least deterring players from whizzing to the lane. The contract comes off the books at the end of the year. Give up another wack contract and a couple young’uns and get that trophy!

  • jose

    Wouldn’t that be something though. i mean not just the shaq to cleveland deal, but the fact that if it happens and they get the chip. Shaq can say he helped the 3 best players in the L get a ring.that sounds pretty nice…

  • http://www.manutd.com Z

    Cleveland is in no position to wait for things to gel. They HAVE to roll the dice and field the 12 best guys they can find in order to win the ‘ship. Bron is holding them hostage and that’s a good thing. Charlie V and Shaq. Charlie V and Shaq. Charlie V and Shaq. Charlie V and Shaq. Charlie V and Shaq. Charlie V and Shaq. Charlie V and Shaq. Charlie V and Shaq. Charlie V and Shaq. Charlie V and Shaq. Charlie V and Shaq.Charlie V and Shaq.Charlie V and Shaq. Charlie V and Shaq.

  • http://sportzin.com Joey E.

    shaq clogs the pain, lebron cant shoot, and he too clogs the paint. orlando killed the CLE bigs with the pick and roll, no? we all know shaq does not defend the P&R. This would soooo not work. unless Bron gets a better jumper, then it could be alright. He’s a Knick either way because Cleveland won’t be getting anything I dont believe

  • http://www.manutd.com Z

    Guys STILL saying that Bron can’t shoot in 09 need to watch some basketball. He’s got the same % as all the other top swingmen in the L from the perimeter. You guys are stuck in 05. Bron’s insane court vision + someone that can actually finish down low = trouble. + they could have the option to dump it down early in the shot clock and let shaq direct traffic in the early part of the game. Bron has to do too much right now and too early in the game.

  • http://www.manutd.com Z

    Word on the street (or HoopsHype, reallu) is Jamison and Mike James for Ben and Sasha… Meh, I’m not sold. He’s not very tall at the 4 and he doesn’t defend well at all. I know the Cavs have a defensive culture instilled but guys like Mo and Twan are not solid individual defenders… He does have skills though with his awkwards flips in the lane.

  • http://www.realcavsfans.com Anton

    ^Fu(k that sh!t.
    Ben/JJ for Shaq, Sasha/Gibson for Charlie V, MLE for Kidd.
    Throw in a 2nd round pick and some cash (courtesy of China) and we’re ready to roll.

  • http://www.manutd.com Z

    JKidd-DWest-Bron-Charlie V-Shaq. Mo (playing 30 a game, Andy V and random wing with some size (kinsey?) off the bench. Do it, Ferry! Do it! I think this actually works under the cap.

  • Morgan Zest

    Shaq, Lebron and Rasheed Wallace would equal a championship next season and stop LeBron from going to The Knicks, which is a real, real possibility !!! Wallace may not get the 8 mill per he gets and the Shaq deal may mess up a bit of his baragaining power, but that would be a hell of a frontcourt !!

  • http://www.manutd.com Z

    I’d take Charlie V instead of Sheed. Sheed DID quit in the playoffs (6 and 6… ugh). And he’s up there in age. Are we even sure that he still likes to play ball at this point or he’s just getting a check?

  • http://sandoonamoon.blogspot.com/ Superman_Osman

    Question to the Cavs GM: Are you f*cking serious? Shaq for Big Ben and Sasha? Say goodbye to the finals Bron cause you’ll never be able to reach it with that aging buffoon. Did they even notice Wallace’s contribution on the defensive end? Shaq doesn’t even exist on that side of the floor. The Superman showdown flop is the least of worries the Cavs are getting themselves into. Too bad, that number 23 guy sure looked close enough to a ring! haha

  • Quail

    i would LOVE to see a 3 team trade out of this. Tyson Chandler comes to the Cavs, Shaq goes to the hornets, Ilgauskas and a scrub go to phoenix. only if Ben Wallace comes back though.

  • http://www.manutd.com Z

    Mmm… Tyson Chandler would be intriguing. I like the rebounding. Haven’t seen enough of him though, can he hold his own on 1vs1 post D? The Cavs have to find a way to not double in the post. As JVG pointed out, if you have to double on a consistent basis in the nba, you’re not going anywhere.

  • http://www.realcavsfans.com Anton

    Chandler = DO NOT WANT. Injury prone, bad attitude, and has fewer offensive moves than an 86 year old man’s sperm count.
    I wish we could somehow get the Birdman, who is pretty much like Varejao only cheaper (and better).

  • Robert Wright

    If you bring Shaq to Cleveland let him come off of the bench to give the reserves some trouble, that’s where he will be most effective.

  • Pisiiologoly

    Lebron didn’t have a problem with crowded lanes. He just didn’t have a true second scoring option. Mo is attractive only with his 3 pointer from time to time. West looked good in garbage minutes. Big Z was a big big no show. the brazilian dude is a poor man’s Udonis. Face it, the roster looks pretty undecent once you look past Lebron. Lebron needs to learn, quickly, from what Kobe went through; he couldn’t win a Champion without a supporting cast. Not even Jordan could in Was.

    And AI, please, go to miami if you want a Champion.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Myles Brown

    “Guys STILL saying that Bron can’t shoot in 09 need to watch some basketball. He’s got the same % as all the other top swingmen in the L from the perimeter. You guys are stuck in 05. ”

    LeBron James shoots 68.5% in the paint. And from there its all down hill. His midrange percentages (from left to right) are 32%, 36% and a ghastly 25%. Around the horn inside the three point line (again from left to right) He shoots 40%, 44%, 37%, 38% & 30%. From three point range around the horn hes at 36%, 35%,27%, 40% & 30%.

    These are FACTS. Those are not good shooting percentages and if you look at his numbers from the same spots in previous year, theyre essentially the same.

    But feel free to ignore this because I have no credibility when it comes to LeBron James.

  • http://www.manutd.com Z

    I should have said from downtown, I’ve never denied in any of my comments that Bron’s midrange J needs work. His % from 3 at 34-35 is more than adequate for an elite swingman. It’s not like people are giving him the J (no matter what they say). I’ve watched at least 40 cavs game this year and nobody is backing off of him. Pietrus certainly was not. / I’m never one to ignore stats. That changes nothing in the fact that you have no credibility when it comes to Bron. Your level of excitement for his failures and shortcomigns are… suspect. I don’t think I have to dig up your comments in the Cleveland recaps again. Acceptance, Myles. Acceptance.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Myles Brown

    I really dont care what you dig up. As with most other things, I try to support my opinions with facts and rational observations. If all you care to do to contest those is say that I hate LeBron and need to admit it, then youre not doing very much to address the issues at hand.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Myles Brown

    Again, what I provided were actual facts to dispute your opinion. You in turn, ignored the facts I provided by modifying your initial statement and proceeded to state more opinions as though they were fact. Its a fact that you think I have no credibility when it comes to discussing LeBron, but its hardly a fact. I cant change your mind about it, nor do I care to.

  • http://www.manutd.com Z

    Okay, but only because you insisted: ”.Speaking of Shard. Clutch. LeBron….eh, not so much. Yes, there were amazing drives/dunks, clutch FT and long range threes that willed their way in. But there were also numerous thoughtless turnovers, airballs, and completely mismanaged possessions. And please dont say he was tired. Cause youre probably one of the same folks that was talking that “Fo, Fo, Fo” Sh*t a week ago. The Cavs have played the least games of any team left in the playoffs and Shard has played 200 more minutes that the Kang. No excuses. If hes amazing one minute, he cant be that tired the next. 3.He fell over. That was Bullsh*t. Capital B. 4.Hes 6′8, 270 or some sh*t like that. For the millionth time, get a post game. 5.When he starts throwing teammates under the bus, lets just hope one of them uses one of those fancy cameras he got them. 6.If a certain someone was one second away from being swept after winning 66 games, being named MVP, and being proclaimed the favorite to win the series by ‘experts’ despite the fact that his team lost 3 of 4 during the regular season to that same opponent and proceeded to turn the ball over 7 times in the fourth quarter and overtime, shoot airballs and keep looking for the refs to bail him out in the biggest must-win game of his life…Hed NEVER EVER EVER hear the end of it. Ever. 7.Muy puqeno. Muy muy pequeno. 8.The Magic are for real. Its pretty clear where my allegiances lie, but if they cant get it, go Dwight, Skip and SVG. ”

  • http://www.slamonline.com Myles Brown


  • http://www.manutd.com Z

    Bron’s midrange game is not good. Fact. Bron’s shooting from downtown is solid and sometimes spectacular. Fact. Bron’s shooting from the line has improved and is now very respectable at 78%. Fact. Saying that he can’t shoot is not true anymore. He can get better and it’s not his forté but it’s not a liability anymore. Now that’s an opinion and you can disagree with it but I think it’s a fair assessment. You don’t have to prove anything to an online reader, I’m just calling out a bias that you won’t acknowledge. If you don’t care, don’t adress it. I’ll still read your columns.

  • http://www.manutd.com Z

    And… it’s hard to believe that you don’t have a bias against Bron when reading that comment. It’s ridiculous to say that he’s not a clutch player. The postgame is there, he abused Pietrus on the block. It’s ridiculous to pretend that being 270 (or something) changes anything when you trip over a foot. I didn’t see the same comments from you when Kob had 7 or 8 TO’s against Orlando and looked for the refs to bail him out on a clean block by Hedo at the end of the 4th. It’s ridiculous to pretend that he gets a pass from the media when we talked about a handshake for a week straight. It’s ridiculous that YOU believe that the game SHOULD be called differently for him because he’s so big even though he shoots 10 fts a game (like every other superstar). Muy Pequeno.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Myles Brown

    Agreed on the midrange. Id even go so far as to agree with the 3pt shooting. He has improved from the line, but I wouldnt call 78% very respectable. Im not saying that he cant shoot at all, but when hes shooting less than 30% from the right side of the floor, then Im well within my boundaries to say that he cant shoot at all from those areas. Shooting that poorly from one side of the floor is a liability if it costs him scoring opportuinities. All Im doing is measuring his entire game by the standard by which any player of his caliber should be. But any supposed bias I may have cannot distort facts, which are what Im providing.

  • http://www.manutd.com Z

    what you’re providing… sometimes. on this player. again, i highly respect your opinion on ball but i’ve just always had the feeling that something was putting you off with bron. there are a LOT of flaws to his game that need to be adressed. but they are never discussed in here because he’s too polarizing. i think the flow of the offense would improve a great deal if he weren’t taking 5 or 6 dribbles near halfcourt on every other possession. i don’t like how he accepts to get screened on D or just goes under sometimes. i think he’s too high on his stance on D. I don’t like the bounce passes in traffic, it’s such a 50-50 play. I don’t like the way he fades even when he’s open. I think he should only be taking set shots from deep. He doesn’t need to shoot 5 3′s a game and his percentage on 3s (all open set shots) RIDICULOUS when he was playing with Team USA. There’s a lot of stuff to clean up in his game and I don’t think I’m such a fanboy that he can do no wrong.

  • http://www.manutd.com Z

    anyways, shaq + charlie v + kidd. that’s the wish list. and i think it’s doable.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Myles Brown

    Theres a difference between saying hes not clutch at all and saying that he came up short in the clutch at times during that series. He missed 5 FT in the fourth quarter of Game 3 and turned the ball over 7 times in the fourth of Game 4. They lost both games. Thats not clutch. His post game is rudimentary for a player of his size and skill. I said Kobe came up very small in the same instances of freethrows and turnovers, but that Id be surprised if he repeated that performance because the Lakers were a phenomenal road team. Thats when my credibility was called into question again and all LA did was win two games in a row in Orlando. Same thing happened in the Denver series. And I just asserted that he clearly takes advantage of his size, strength and speed to muscle his way past weaker defenders and when they ‘fight back’ theyre called for the foul. I simply wanted them to be able to defend him physically since he initiates the contact.

  • http://www.manutd.com Z

    Mmmm… from what I recall your argument was that fouls should be relative to the guy that’s being fouled. Implying that Bron should not get the calls that guys like Iverson get because he can take it. I could not disagree more as it is penalizing them for having basically a perfect basketball physique. He doesn’t initiate more contact than D-Wade or the Kobe from 2-3 years ago when he gets to the hoop so I don’t know what’s the fighting back thing. I think that’s a very poor argument to make. When he runs through defenders that have their feet set, they call the charge. What you see most of the time is that defenders are not quick enough to beat him to a spot to take that charge. He knows that. That’s on them, get there quicker…if you can. / Saying that LA bounced back because of Kobe’s performance is stretching the truth since he shot 11-31 on that game 5 and D-Fish/RZA were the ones hitting the clutch shots at the end. / There’s a certain leeway that you would give to certain players and not to others. That’s cool, we all do it. Kobe didn’t do anything differently in these playoffs compared to last years. His numbers are eerily similar. What changed was the play of his teammates. / You and countless others don’t wanna hear that with Bron even though Cleveland went from the best shooting club in the league at 39% from 3 to a stinky 33% in the playoffs. All the complimentary players except maybe D-West (and even then…) weren’t as good vs Orlando as they have been in the reg season. Mo, Z, Ben, Joe Smith, Andy, Boobie, Wally, Sasha, D-West. That’s a fact. How is that on Bron? Same thing for Kob, the fact that Pau and Lamar got punked in last year’s final by the big bad bullies from the Celts was not on him.

  • http://www.manutd.com Z

    There is no way that Cleveland can beat the elite teams in the league if their superstar is the only one showing up. That’s true for very other elite team as well. The Lakers don’t beat Orlando if Pau doesn’t shoot 60% from the field, Ariza doesn’t shoot an insane 50% from deep, Lamar doesn’t get all the key rebounds. Orlando doesn’t beat Cleveland if Pietrus doesn’t go on fire from the corners and Shard doesn’t hit all those clutch 3s. You need all of your big pieces to play well to win a ‘ship and that’s the beauty of it. That’s why you remember the journey and the unsung heros that came up huge. It didn’t happen this year for Cleveland and I think it’s ridiculous to point the finger at the only guy who played well on that team. I mean, damn, he had 39-8-8 on 49% shooting against Orlando and he’s supposed to be part of the problem and Pietrus is supposed to give him fits?! Kobe had an excellent 32-7-6 on 43% against the exact same team but he’s destroying Pietrus out there whilst coming up big when it matters. Go figure.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Myles Brown

    My argument was exactly what I typed because I just cut and pasted it. And Shaq was penalized for having a perfect basketball physique. LA didnt bounce back solely because of Kobes performance I just noted that they were one of the best road teams in leagues history in breaking three separate 12+ game win streaks. Id be a fool to argue that things were solely on Bron in that series, his teammates all but disappeared. But the fact of the matter is that were it not for the aforementioned miscues in games 3 & 4, Bron still couldve won in spite of his teammates sh*tty performance. Thats all.