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The Jeremy Pargo trade was a salary dump
July 26th, 2012

Whatever you may feel about Jeremy Pargo – personally, I’m quite shocked at how poor his rookie season was and firmly believe he could do considerably better given a faster paced team with better spacing – it is only important to know that in today’s trade featuring him, he was merely a salary. So too was D.J. Kennedy. In trading Pargo, his $1 million guaranteed 2012/13 salary and a second round pick for Kennedy (whose minimum salary of $762,195 is fully unguaranteed), Memphis does a salary dump and nothing else. Even the $1 million TPE they open up in doing so (created as Kennedy’s salary is absorbable via the minimum salary exception) is of little use, being so small.

The Grizzlies are trying to dodge the tax. They did so last year, managing to dip under the threshold upon trading the redundant Sam Young to Philly, and are now threatened by it again. This, to their credit, has not stopped their spending this summer – they paid to re-sign both Darrell Arthur and Marreese Speights, giving them a strong frontcourt with good depth, and were similarly unashamed to spend what it took to upgrade their big hole at the backup point guard spot. Dodging the tax again is unlikely to happen, though. The $3,006,217 given to Arthur, $3 million to Jerryd Bayless, $4.2 million to Speights and $1,110,120 to Tony Wroten has put them back above the $70.307 million tax threshold – after today’s trade, Memphis has $73,053,277 committed to 12 players, not including the unguaranteed salary of Kennedy. It is more than likely the case that Memphis will not be able to avoid a small tax penalty this season. But if it only costs a mid-to-late second round pick to lessen that hit by $2 million, on a player who was being pushed out of the rotation anyway, then the reason for the trade is apparent.

Cleveland, meanwhile, essentially pays $1 million for a second rounder, even less if cash was also involved, and gets a look at a possibly viable backup along the way. There’s no need for the team to keep both Pargo and Donald Sloan, and they may yet opt for neither, but the inclusion of the second round pick makes it a worthwhile exercise to bring in both and have them fight for the spot.

Posted by at 3:49 AM

8 Comments about The Jeremy Pargo trade was a salary dump

  1. Rashidi26 July, 2012, 5:29 am

    Pargo was no longer needed with the signing of Bayless and the summer development of Josh Selby.
    Tony Wroten is a perfect fit next to those guys since they can play SG on offense and then guard PGs on defense.
    Given that the team also just traded for Wayne Elllington, I find it highly unlikely that Kennedy makes the roster (which means you are right, this is a salary dump through and through). They simply don't need 7 guards when that close to the luxury tax (not to mention Pondexter can slide over in a pinch if they want a defensive minded wing).

    I believe the team is re-signing Haddadi for the minimum, which probably replaces most of Pargo's salary (though it should be a smaller cap hit).

    PG: Conley, Bayless, Selby
    SG: Allen, Wroten, Ellington
    SF: Gay, Pondexter
    PF: Randolph, Arthur
    C: Gasol, Speights, Haddadi

    Minimum roster is 13 and given the luxury tax concerns it's probable that they enter the season with that roster.

  2. Mark Deeks (Sham)26 July, 2012, 5:30 am

    It's not a bad team at all. But it'd be good if they paid for the 14th spot and squeezed one extra shooter in there.

  3. Rashidi26 July, 2012, 5:41 am

    As for Cleveland I'm sure they plan on using Pargo since they were looking at players like Jonny Flynn. Pargo certainly can't be any worse.

    Sloan and Daniel Gibson do not have guaranteed deals (only half of Gibson's salary is), so it would be surprising to see a similar move from them in the near future.

    PG: Irving, Pargo, Sloan
    SG: Waiters, Gibson, Azubuike
    SF: Gee (RFA), Casspi
    PF: Thompson, Leuer, Harangody, Walton, Kevin Jones
    C: Varejao, Zeller, Samuels

    As it stands the Cavs have 16 players, 3 of whom are non-guaranteed. Cavs could cut Walton who is an NBA player in name only at this point, but I think would prefer to keep his expiring contract as a trade chip.

    Wouldn't surprise me to see something involving a C.J. Miles sign/trade so the Cavs can get something resembling a SG (even if they keep Gee on the QO).

  4. Rashidi26 July, 2012, 5:44 am

    Ellington can shoot which is surely why they brought him in there, but an upgrade from Pondexter would be nice. I was thinking Mickael Pietrus would make sense, but he wants more than the veteran's minimum. Ditto I assume for Carlos Delfino.

  5. Rashidi26 July, 2012, 5:47 am

    Oh, actually… Shawne Williams makes a ton of sense as a 3/4 man. He went to college at Memphis so he certainly has local ties.

  6. Julien Snyers26 July, 2012, 7:56 am

    Ellington is really disappointing. He shot 32% from 3 last year (in his two previous seasons he was good, just below 40%). He is a carrer 41% from the floor. And per 36 min, he scores a measly 11.5pts. (Thanks Basketball Reference)

    i don't expect anything from this guy.

  7. steppling26 July, 2012, 3:47 pm

    Kennedy is a plus defender though…a tough kid and was sensational at St Johns before the ACL…i hope he sticks.

  8. steppling26 July, 2012, 3:48 pm

    and whats wrong with pondexter Id like to know??

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