Josh Smith's name continues to be at the forefront of trade discussions involving the Atlanta Hawks and other teams. Here we take a moment to run down some of the latest chatter:
First up Sekou Smith clears up the whole max contract thing in regards to Josh Smith. Its been reported that Smith has asked the Hawks for a max deal which is not the case. Smith simply was asked whether or not he considered himself a max player to which he replied yes. Not sure you'd want a key player on your team to respond any other way.
Smith never said he demanded a max deal or else from the Hawks. A source close to Smith confirmed that the conversation between the two sides never ventured into that realm. Smith simply answered a question the way you'd expect any competitive NBA player to answer it when presented with the premise of "Do you think you are worth max money?"
The San Antonio Spurs were another team that was reported to have interest in acquiring Josh Smith. Pounding The Rock thinks that if the Hawks desired a deal that started with Stephen Jackson and Tiago Splitter then it would be worth exploring. They are not as keen on a deal involving Kawhi Leonard.
If the Hawks ask for Jackson, Splitter and parts (like De Colo and a first round pick) it makes sense for the Spurs to explore it, even if there are some possible drawbacks that come with making a significant move at this point in the season. More likely, the Hawks ask for Leonard back, which puts the Spurs in a bad position since they'd be losing both their small forwards, one of which Popovich and the front office regard as an eventual star -- all for a guy who could very well be nothing more than a rental.
Atlanta Journal-Constitution Hawks beat writer Chris Vivlamore reports that there have been trade discussions around Smith but no trade was imminent as of Tuesday.
The Hawks are fielding calls on Smith and there have been trade discussions involving the forward - and other members of the current roster. The lack of a trade to this point leads to the conclusion that no offer has been acceptable to part with the versatile Smith. As of Tuesday, no trade was imminent. It is possible a pursuing team could up its offer for Smith as the deadline nears.
One of the more popular trade rumors had Smith landing in Phoenix but that is now unlikely according to Paul Coro of the Arizona Republic. (H/T to Bright Side of the Sun)
The Josh Smith rumor keeps floating and there seems to be nothing at all on the trade front for him with Phoenix. Smith could be of more interest to the Suns in free agency but he wants to be a maximum-salary player and he is no face of the franchise. Rudy Gay was more of a real trade option than Smith has been.