Tuesday July 13 2010 – 1:51pm Eastern – Toronto, ON

This looks bad.

This looks really bad.And, unfortunately, it’s not the first time it has happened (see:  TJ Ford last season).

The Charlotte Bobcats are reportedly pulling out of their deal with the Toronto Raptors; a trade that would have seen Jose Calderon, Dwayne Jones (soon-to-be-acquired from Phoenix) and Reggie Evans head south to North Carolina for Boris Diaw and Tyson Chandler.

Word is that Bobcats president, Michael Jordan, got cold feet at some point late last night and would not sign-off on the trade with the Raps.  There is also some talk that Larry Brown wasn’t thrilled about losing Chandler.

But why does this look so bad?

Hey, deals fall through all of the time.  Sure, rumors are reported and speculation swirls on moves that never come to fruition almost every day – especially at this time of the year!

But this is different.  Players were told.  The negotiation went beyond merely ‘talking’ and moved the point where players were called and informed of the upcoming transaction.  Chandler told Yahoo Sports that he was heading to Toronto.  Evans tweeted a message on his Twitter account … thanking the fans of Toronto for their support over the past 12+ months.

And now the deal is off.

No rules were broken but the smell around this mess stinks.  You can’t string along the players – and their personal lives like this.  I’m sure Chandler, Diaw, Jones, and Evans have their own issues … but let’s look at Calderon as an example:

He finds out that he’s being traded from the only pro team/city he has ever known while dealing with his 3-month old son at home in Spain.  Yet as he wraps his head around the fact that he’s on the move to Charlotte, he finds out early in the morning (in Spain) that the deal is likely off and he’s actually staying in Toronto.  Further to that mess … he now knows that the Raps are/were trying to get rid of him and the answer to the “are they going to trade Jose or are they going to trade Jarrett Jack” question seems pretty clear.

Sure, some may say ‘that’s part of the business’ … but that’s not how you tread people or how you do business properly.

There’s no way that I can imagine Rod Higgins (Bobcats GM) and Bryan Colangelo came to an agreement without Jordan knowing what was going on until the final second.  Why did MJ not squash this move earlier in the day — seeing as it was being worked on for nearly 24 hours (or more) — instead of balking at the bitter end when players had already accepted their new reality?

The Bobcats were close to grabbing Pacers’ guard TJ Ford at last year’s trade deadline before backing out at the last minute as well; all sides (and all indications) seemed to think the deal was done.And, ironically, this isn’t the first time Chandler has been ‘traded’ … only to ‘head back’ to his current team.   When he was a member of the New Orleans Hornets in 2009, Chandler was dealt to Oklahoma City before the Thunder rescinded the deal.  But that scenario was different as it had to do with Chandler’s physical with OKC.

Jordan’s cold feet – or Brown’s anger – has put Toronto in a tough spot with Calderon and Evans and it has potentially affected the Raptors in future deals for either of those players as well … ’cause teams may assume Toronto is trying to move Jose or Reggie and, thus, they’ll offer less in return; trying to force (or fleece) Colangelo’s hand.

Perhaps the deal with the Bobcats and Raptors could be resurrected at some point — with other players or money exchanging hands — but for now it seems to be dead.

And it stinks.

E. Smith

18 Responses to “Cold Feet Keep Calderon in T.O.”
  1. 1.

    Rod Higgins not really wearing the pants in this relationship! Charlotte definitely has some issues. I’m sure this is messy on the Bobcats side as well since Chandler himself confirmed the trade was going through. I’m not a big fan of post-retirement MJ right now!!!!

    - Mackdhami
  2. 2.

    Wow….from a players stand point, this really does suck! Was never really too big on Diaw and Chandler individually but like what they had to offer in terms of running a high octane team. I think that style could have suited them both. Still glad we have Jose and Reggie back…for now that is.

    - Anthony R
  3. 3.

    This is the type of failed trade that will make other teams hesitant when dealing with Charlotte. Nothing about it looks good.

    - lewickipedia
  4. 4.

    Sounds like the ghost of Harold Ballard is haunting Michael Jordan.

    - Jack
  5. 5.

    You’ve got to be kidding me, Eric. Sympathy for Jose? Puleeeeeeze!

    The only group that kinda gets screwed in this scenario is the fans. But, once again…does MLSE really care? Obviously, no.

    I really it’s not all about money (or, is it?) but Jose Calderon is in the midst of a contract that will pay him $45 million to play basketball. Yes, Eric…to play basketball.

    So, no…I’m not feeling bad for Jose. He seems like a super guy, and I’m sure he would appreciate being treated better by his employer, but who doesn’t?

    Difference is Jose will never, ever, ever have to worry about a penny again in his entire life.

    Got to disagree with you bigtime on this one, Eric. Once again, it’s the fans left in the ditch by yet another boneheaded NBA ownership/management move.

    It’s time David Stern starts tightening things up a bit, no?

    - brento.
  6. 6.

    It sounded to good to be true.

    It felt like a fantasy basketball situation when the other gm accepts your first tester offer and you are shocked.

    Then the rest of the league chimes in and he tries desperately to rescind or veto the deal.

    Only this time the owner actuall has veto power.

    - Lee Mintz
  7. 7.

    You got it E. Totally amateur stuff on Charlotte’s behalf. I always thought the deal was far better for T.O. than Charlotte but nonetheless, when you reach what has to be considered the “drop dead” point you can’t pull out like that. A few more of these (or not) and MJ may have difficulty making moves in the future. Looks like he is trying to use his “fadeaway” as a GM.

    - AndrewMacVicar
  8. 8.

    I feel BCo will use this as a sign to strive for better now..Diaw and Chandler are great players don’t get me wrong, but Diaw has struggled with his conditioning..and Chadler is simply aging. Calderon is a key play maker for the Raptors, and Reggie Evans is an outstandingly hard worker, and now BCo will realize he can get better for them, possibly this time eating into our TPE, but either way I feel this was a hidden sign.

    - Aaron
  9. 9.

    @Aaron — Diaw and Chandler are “great players”.

    If that is true, what are Kobe Bryant and Dwight Howard?

    I just don’t get Raptors fans. The only great players the Raps have EVER had are Damon Stoudamire, Vince Carter and Chris Bosh. That’s it. The rest fall short of great.

    Some, like Charles Oakley, had a “great” impact, but simply didn’t have the oncourt skills to be labelled a “great” player.

    But, Boris Diaw and Tyson Chandler as “great”???? If they’re great, then half the league is great, and it’s not.

    Please stop calling average players great.

    - brento.
  10. 10.

    I dont think this is as bad as it seems. If Jose takes this personally there is pleanty of room on the bench toronto has Jack more then ready and willing to play and I still believe the Raps on on the lookout for a bonified starting point guard because I dont believe these guys can handle the pressure. As for Evans who really cares the guy played a total of about 20 min last season when he was healthy and did absolutely nothing. Colderon has played himself into this position with terrible defence that lost him the starting role in the first place. We as toronto fans have to stop thinking that every player we have is gold. These guys would be bench players at best on any elite team in the NBA. So clear the salary get what we can get and simply move on.

    - Steven Sabadin
  11. 11.

    Yahoo! Sports is reporting that the Charlotte Bobcats have traded centres Tyson Chandler and Alex Ajinca to the Dallas Mavericks for Erick Dampier, Matt Carroll and Eduardo Najera


    So, it appears like that is that folks. Chandler is not coming to Toronto, he’s heading to Dallas.

    - Eric Smith
  12. 12.

    Colangelo did it to Portland last year and now Dallas does it back to Toronto…..oh well !

    - Neil
  13. 13.

    So much MJ not wanting to part with his center ……..hmmmmm I thing Dallas just up the offer and MJ ran with it I still repect BC for almost pulling off a great double trade …so long turk don’t let the ball hit you on the way out of TO

    - Mike
  14. 14.


    This is what happens when an athlete thinks he can be a “Business person”. Athletes like MJ think they can walk off the court and become “Business People” without the formal education or the mentoring and experience from doing “Business” over a long period of time.

    MJ must realize that he WAS a basketball player. The best thing for him to do is continue playing golf every day and don’t forget to smile when your pushing a new product on the public. And please stop acting like an executive. Your embarrassing yourself.

    Thanks Eric.

    - R. Ralph
  15. 15.

    What’s so great about Chandler exactly? He’s an underachieving journeyman big man that misses half-seasons with injuries on a consistent basis!

    Calderon is a solid, unselfish, reliable point guard that doesn’t carry a team but doesn’t hurt a team either. He would be a great addition for many teams that have a few good scorers, and I doubt the Raps will get any worse than Chandler in a trade.

    Jordan looks like he’s running a Mickey Mouse organization. What GM will want to deal with that clown if he keeps pulling stunts like this?

    - Sanchez
  16. 16.


    chandler isnt great but is long and can run and block shots but the reason we wanted him was because its his final year and 13million dollars would come off the books for the Raps to go out next year and sign a better player. So its not all about Chandlers playing ability its more about his expiring 13 million dollar contract. It would have given Colangelo some more money and cap space to work with next year or at the trade deadline.

    - Neil
  17. 17.

    Neil…Colangelo won’t be around next year. Thankfully, his contract is up after this coming season. He’s just trying to come up with something — anything — for fans to applaud him for.

    - brento.
  18. 18.

    Somewhere other NBA teams are laughing at the ineptitude of the Charlotte Bobcats. I wouldn’t be surprised if Toronto beats the pants off of MJ’s Bobcats, that should teach them a lesson about playing with other players feelings.

    - Carlos
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