Atlanta Hawks: J.J. willing to play for less money in New York?

ESPN.com’s Chris Broussard says the Knicks will meet with J.J. in Los Angeles soon after free agency opens at midnight Thursday.

That’s no surprise since New York is one of a handful of teams with the cap space to offer J.J. a max deal and it’s always been speculated J.J. would look at the Knicks because of his his strong relationship with coach Mike D’Antoni from their Phoenix days. Until now I’d always heard New York wasn’t very interested in Johnson, but apparently that’s not the case. Broussard says the Knicks think J.J. can sell LeBron on teaming up in New York, which seems to be kind of a backwards arrangement.

The most interesting part of Broussard’s story is that he reports Johnson is willing to take less money from the Knicks, who can’t pay him as much as the Hawks due to salary-cap rules. According to Broussard, J.J. believes he can make up the roughly $25 million difference through endorsements and stock shares in Madison Square Garden. (Edit: I’m pretty sure paying a guy in stock options would be against NBA rules because it is a circumvention of the salary cap. Edit2: A helpful reader emailed to point out the league has already addressed this specific situation.) If the Hawks resign themselves to J.J.’s departure, he could get the $25 million and they could get an asset through a sign-and-trade.

Don’t ask me about the stocks, but J.J. hasn’t been a very marketable player, nor has he been very enthusiastic about marketing himself. Not sure how much that changes even playing in New York, especially if he’s on a team with either LeBron or Amare. And I’m still waiting to see all these older free agents willing to forsake $20-30 million in salary just so they can be more famous, play on a better team, bring in extra endorsements, live in a better city or whatever.

In any event, J.J. taking less money to play elsewhere is the scenario most feared by Atlanta . Rumblings that J.J. may be willing to do just that before free agency has already begun will only increase the Hawks’ nervousness about his departure. Getting the word out there certainly gives J.J. more leverage with the Hawks, who at some point may have to decide if they will give J.J. a six-year, maximum-level salary.

I wouldn’t think J.J. would be a New York kind of guy–if he thinks he got it bad here after fading in the playoffs, wait until he’s the goat in that city. I’ve always thought the Bulls would be J.J.’s most likely destination if he left Atlanta. Just a couple days ago K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune reported that J.J. was ready to make an early commitment to the Bulls.

But then Jonathan Abrams wrote in the New York Times that the Bulls are the favorites to land LeBron and Bosh, which would not leave money for J.J. Then again, maybe Bosh really is headed for Miami and then J.J. and LeBron can team up in Chicago.

Already you can see how free agency is going to be a pretty silly season.

MC

311 comments Add your comment

Joe Johnson

June 27th, 2010
5:04 pm

Thanks Atlanta,
I have had many years of great memories here, but I must move on to win a championship as I feel this organization is not committed to winning. I wish this city and franchise nothing but the best in the future.

Justice

June 27th, 2010
5:05 pm

First!!
Man I think we can do worst than a sign and trade wit New York. What I am trying to say is screw Joe Johnson..

Melvin Flowers Macon Ga

June 27th, 2010
5:06 pm

Let him go sww ur don’t want to be u.

JJ

June 27th, 2010
5:07 pm

The Grinch

June 27th, 2010
5:13 pm

Agreed, Justice. Now that we have a real general manager that might actually work for us. Unfortunately we still don’t have a real owner so attracting free agents might be difficult.

CONFEDERATE DAWG

June 27th, 2010
5:13 pm

BYE!!! RUDY GAY COME ON DOWN, JOSH CHILDRESS BRING IT ON BACK. BE JUST FINE AND DEEPER.

ONELOVE GA

Joe

June 27th, 2010
5:14 pm

Go after Bosh or Amare and let Joe GO!!

Andre

June 27th, 2010
5:18 pm

BYE!!! We got the two JC’s, go after a BIG!!!

Mike S

June 27th, 2010
5:18 pm

Joe thinks ATL turned on him run his mouth in NY and see how rough it can get!

Kenbud

June 27th, 2010
5:19 pm

Goodbye Joe. Thank for you showing your true self and “caring less if (Atlanta fans) show up” ……. not that we contributed to your paycheck or anything. Go to New York ….. they are MUCH more caring there.

Kenbud

June 27th, 2010
5:21 pm

and yes to Rudy Gay. How can we go out and get him, Michael? Is it even possible?

CONFEDERATE DAWG

June 27th, 2010
5:22 pm

GAY IS FREE AGENT

Gilley

June 27th, 2010
5:22 pm

Joe Johnson is our best player and we need him but if he leaves, I will not be heartbroken. It has nothing to do with his comments (I wasn’t offended and did not boo him at Game 3 or 4) but he is not emotionally connected with the city or the fans and I think the feeling is mutual. We have that connection with Josh Smith & Al Horford but not so much with Joe Johnson….Well at least that’s my opinion. But if we can work out a sign and trade, that would be great. Still mum on Larry Drew as our coach but will reserve judgment until I see him in the summer league and regular season.

Hoops

June 27th, 2010
5:23 pm

Free Agency Thoughts-

I do not see JJ coming back to the Hawks. I think he will try to follow LaBron. LaBron is either going to the Nets, Bulls, or Knicks IMO. The Knicks cannot put enough good players together to play @ the level that he wants to play at even if JJ goes with him. The Knicks have a terrible roster! I really believe that LaBron will end up with the Bulls. I don’t see him going to Miami where Wade is the Man!

Let’s just say for a minute that LaBron goes to the Bulls. JJ would be a better fit with them than Bosh IMO. Bosh will then go to the Heat IMO.

If JJ goes to the Bulls, the Hawks should S&T JJ for Luol Denq (if he is still there after LaBron signs)& a 1st Rd. pick. That would keep the Bulls salary total @ 54.5M and the Hawks @ 58.2M. Both would be under the L. tax. Then, trade Bibby, Evans, and Zaza to the Bobcats for Chandler. The Bobcats want to move him from all that I have read. He has an expiring contract. The salary totals are within the NBA rules. This is the Hawks lineup:

PG-Teague, Crawford
SG-Childress, Crawford2
SF-Denq, Marvin
PF-Josh, Morris, J. Smith
C-Horford, Chandler, Siler

Now, if LaBron goes to the Nets, then the Hawks should S&T JJ for Devin Harris (if he is still there after LaBron signs)and a 1st RD. pick. That puts the Nets salary total @ 50.9M and the Hawks @ 62.8M (assuming we resign Childress). The Nets have the space to get another PG. Both are under the L. tax. Then trade Bibby, Evans, and Zaza to the Bobcats for Chandler. I really like this line up:

PG-Harris, Teague
SG-Crawford, Crawford2
SF-Marvin, Childress
PF-Josh, Morris, J. Smith
C-Horford, Chandler, Siler

What are your thoughts???

CONFEDERATE DAWG

June 27th, 2010
5:27 pm

JESUS I THINK THAT WAS PRETTY WELL DONE HOOPS. MUCH RATHER HAVE HARRIS THEN DENG. I BARELY THINK LD IS BETTER THAN MARVIN AND I THINK MARVIN PLAYS GREAT MAN D ON THE OTHER TEAMS GOOD WINGS.

ryan

June 27th, 2010
5:27 pm

Good luck Joe you going to need up there the ATL fans have been real supportive down here media has been wise but up there it going to be hell . If you don’t win right away in New York fans and media will jump all over you.

gerald

June 27th, 2010
5:28 pm

First of all Joe , please dont go there, i watch your bio, and i thought you was a cool person , to have come from a hard life, now i beg the differnt, your greedy, your head is to big, your not a number one player, your a six man. Dude i try to like you, but what have you showed the city of Atlanta, (nothing), no guts. You say not committed, where were you in the playoff? Only two players played there hearts out JOsh and AL, . Yoou walk around like your sleep, I heard you on one of the radio station saying you and Josh was going to do it, What Happen? Now New York, are you crazy, they will boo ur azz right out of there, Dude thank God for what you got, and chill, So please ATL HAWKS let him GO

James

June 27th, 2010
5:30 pm

I said it when he turned down the extention offer last year ,I said it just before the trade deadline Trade this guy!! Now unless therei s a sign and trade deal the Hawks will get nothing if he walks.I will say this again.Joe Johnson is a Robin who trys to play like’a Batman but secretly wants to be a Robin but paid like a Batman.The Hawks should issue a statement at the begining of the signing period that there is no interest in signing Joe Johnson.Let this guy walk he was collecting paychecks from the Hawks and expressed an interest in playing for the knicks,Let him!! Rick Sund this guy is not amoung the 15 best players in NBA,He may not be the best on your team.You just want him because he dosent want you!

ICECOLD

June 27th, 2010
5:31 pm

Well. Sign and trade for David lee and a good expiring contract.. or better yet. A three part trade so we can get another pure closer like nate Robinson and and David lee and we give josh childress and Joe Johnson.
Line up be
Jeff league
Jordan Crawford or jamal Crawford
Josh smith
Al horford
And David Robinson

Bench would be great
With Marvin, zaza , bibby , jamal or Jordan Crawford , and another big man through free agency. Or trade zaza and get another shot blocker that will run the floor.

No more ISO Joe or I got to prove myself Joe.
And the changes will only make the team play better as a team.
Not relying on Joe when all else fails. That’s why they crashed in the playoffs.

I like Joe. Only wish him the best. But this will really work out great for both parties.

Make it happen spirit…

ryan

June 27th, 2010
5:32 pm

I think the Hawks should take a hard look at making a trade for Chris Paul.

Football Fan

June 27th, 2010
5:41 pm

Let JJ walk. I am sick of his playoff meltdowns. Maybe the team will be down for a couple of years, but perhaps we can catch lightning in a bottle with a high draft pick because this franchise has NEVER been to the Eastern Conference Finals, let alone the NBA Finals. So what if we are awful for a couple of years? Overpaying an aging player in his decline is dumb for the long term and has crippled many a franchise. Our only hope is to draft a Chris Paul type of player that we should’ve drafted to start with if Billy Knight wasn’t so in love with “long and athletic” guys.

Jethro

June 27th, 2010
5:41 pm

The Hawks should resign themselves to the idea that JJ’s gone. I’d love it if they got him, but I get the sense that JJ’s had his mind made up for a while. Nor do I accept the fact that getting Chills is a given. No, I think Coach Drew plays with a retooled team. LD needs to put his own mark on the team, and JJ I think won’t let that happen. Best assume Sund S&Ts JJ somewhere. That doesn’t worry me too much.

bunk sims

June 27th, 2010
5:43 pm

JOE KICK ROCKS TIRED OF THE DISAPPEARING ACT IN THE PLAYOFFS

CONFEDERATE DAWG

June 27th, 2010
5:44 pm

WELL SAID GERALD

gerald

June 27th, 2010
5:46 pm

chris paul yes that make sense

gerald

June 27th, 2010
5:47 pm

thanks Mr. Confederate Dawg,

The northern side

June 27th, 2010
5:49 pm

NOOOOOOOOOOOO!

JJ don’t go, if you leave then whos underwear will I starch? Who’s jockstrap will I sniff in the dark corners of the locker room while security does not know I’m there?

hmmm...

June 27th, 2010
5:51 pm

Who is LaBron? I know about LeBron, if you are going to act like you know something at least get the names right. Also to the guy that thinks Nate Robinson is still with the Knicks thats news to us that saw him in a Boston uniform during the playoffs

ccrider

June 27th, 2010
5:52 pm

Not worth the Max Contract, sign and trade for David Lee, sign John Salmons

ICECOLD

June 27th, 2010
5:52 pm

As long as we keep al horford, josh smith, jamal crawford, Jeff teague, …… we will be alright. And maybe Marvin Williams will step up even more now if Joe leaves. Maybe it was Joe Johnson that was stuntin everybody’s growth. Ruining the point point guards cuz everybody relied on him too much.

And earlier I Said David Robinson. I ment to say David lee.

Fire woody. Lol.

JeJe

June 27th, 2010
5:54 pm

1. If Joe is teamed up with LeBron in New York, I don’t see Joe being as much of a goat if they lose as LeBron would be

2) I seriously doubt Joe knows what “stock shares in Madison Square Garden” means.

3) “$20-30 million in salary just so they can be more famous, play on a better team, bring in extra endorsements, live in a better city or whatever. ”

Players only give up that salary in order to win a ring. No one is going to give up 30 mill in order to come from a team like the Clippers or Nets to come here. Players give up that kind of money to go play for the Lakers or Celtics

3) FIRE SUND, FIRE WOODY, FIRE ASG

gerald

June 27th, 2010
5:55 pm

Look, I understand everybody who wishes, J.J. stayed here, but he dont want to, get over it he wants out. Did you here his comment during the playoff, and then tried to cover it up, why was that, (cause his people told him too, he didn’t mean it) I no its been along time since we had a winning sesaon, but if am going to take my money, that i had to work hard for( not packing guys reel ends) for money, I wont someone who wants to play here, hell i rush home during the playoff, to see joe sleep

ICECOLD

June 27th, 2010
5:56 pm

.hmmm…..

I didn’t say nate Robinson was wit the knicks. I said a three part trade. Read it again. Three team trade. I like nate Robinson. He has a lot of energy off the bench.

So…….. hah

clarkekent

June 27th, 2010
5:58 pm

as i have said since the season has been over.. Do the sign and trade with MEM for Rudy Gay! let JJ go .. we can sign a younger, more athletic player and save money. GET RUDY GAY! rudy, josh and Al up front is sick and they all are under 25. we need to make this happen.. can you invision teague pushing the ball in the 4th quarter with crawford, rudy gay, josh smith and al… just sick and you have 4 starter under 25. The hawks have chills, marvin, mo evans and picks they can trade. plus we can move bibby during the season after the allstar game (expiring contract the following year)…. thats 6 mill off the books there just by moving bibby.

Big A Hawks Fan

June 27th, 2010
6:02 pm

Joe…… Go ahead and take your act somewhere else! We will be better off with the sign and trade return or the salary space! You are not that good! And by the way… New York will eat your lunch and I can’t wait to see your reaction! Nothing worse than a spoiled professional overpaid player!

I miss Tree Rollins

June 27th, 2010
6:06 pm

Does anyone think Jamal Crawford could step up and take over Joe Johnson’s role in the starting line up if Joe chooses to leave?

N.D.T.K.A.

June 27th, 2010
6:09 pm

This is just a bunch of talk, whoever opens the wallets with the most money will sign J.J. and that is something you can take to the bank. Especially Joe Johnson’s bank. Money talks. Everything else is free agent posturing.

ryan

June 27th, 2010
6:12 pm

It looks like LeBron in Chicago Bosh in LA or Chi Town Stoundemire in Miami or NY/NJ . J.J. to NY or Miami . That is how looks!

cdog

June 27th, 2010
6:14 pm

who cares? you lose with him, you can win without him.let joe johnson go.he is not in the star category. he kunks out on you when crunch time comes.rick sund should save the money he has for johnson and bring in a star player that is a winner in the regular season and the playoffs.

cdog

June 27th, 2010
6:16 pm

a sign and trade with him makes plenty of sense.joe johnson will never bring a championship to atlanta or no other team.he does not have the character to be a champion.

STEEL (Formerly VenomSpitter)

June 27th, 2010
6:17 pm

I want to see how Marvin plays with out Joe on the team. I’m willing to give him 1 more chance.

cdog

June 27th, 2010
6:18 pm

ryan, why can’t some of these come to atlanta? answer- one name, rick sund.

Kapoonka

June 27th, 2010
6:18 pm

Don’t see how I can go wrong by keeping my allegiance with the Bulls. I think JJ would thrive there with Bosh…but not LeBron. The bottom line is Atlanta, as much as I love it, is not a true sports town. There are too many transplants and folks who only go to games when the teams are winning. True sports fans weather the storms and relish in victory and hang tough during the tough times. I’m sure the Hawks will drop the ball on this and end up getting zilch for JJ. Childress is not the answer..he sucks in Greece, and his game has not progressed. This is going to be interesting……

The Real Hawk

June 27th, 2010
6:18 pm

If he’s willing to take less would he accept a sign and trade?

The Real Hawk

June 27th, 2010
6:20 pm

The Hawks will NOT pay Chris Paul.

GT_Thrasherfan

June 27th, 2010
6:20 pm

Just a thought…If any time someone mentions LeBron before July 1, shouldn’t this also be tampering? The league better fine them if our owner stating the obvious (that he’d pay LeBron whatever to bring him here) is fine-worthy.

Bubba G

June 27th, 2010
6:30 pm

We need a guy that is a proven leader and not a ball hog like jj. Lets hope that we do well in free agency. I would love for rudy gay to join the hawks, he is a overall better scorer than joe and isn’t two faced. Go HAWKS

Michael Cunningham

June 27th, 2010
6:31 pm

@JeJe: “1. If Joe is teamed up with LeBron in New York, I don’t see Joe being as much of a goat if they lose as LeBron would be”

i see your point. however, when LeBron lost in Cleveland, all we heard was “he doesn’t have enough help.”

“2) I seriously doubt Joe knows what “stock shares in Madison Square Garden” means.”

i don’t really understand the details of my 401k but i do understand the bottom line of the statement.

3) “$20-30 million in salary just so they can be more famous, play on a better team, bring in extra endorsements, live in a better city or whatever. ”

“Players only give up that salary in order to win a ring. No one is going to give up 30 mill in order to come from a team like the Clippers or Nets to come here. Players give up that kind of money to go play for the Lakers or Celtics”

name me one

Michael Cunningham

June 27th, 2010
6:32 pm

@N.D.T.K.A.: “This is just a bunch of talk, whoever opens the wallets with the most money will sign J.J. and that is something you can take to the bank. Especially Joe Johnson’s bank. Money talks. Everything else is free agent posturing.”

glad somebody feels me on that.

CoreyC

June 27th, 2010
6:33 pm

I think if JJ leaves it will because he is a coward and doesn’t have what it takes to lead a team to a championship. So, I hope he stays because I think he is great player, but if he leaves, it will just prove that he actually isn’t the guy for us.