Tuesday morning, Chad Ford of ESPN.com reported the "next shoe to drop" for the Clippers following the completion of their blockbuster Kevin Garnett/Doc Rivers deal would be to acquire Arron Afflalo for Eric Bledsoe and Caron Butler.
I wrote about this couple weeks ago, but if LAC can strike deal with BOS, nxt shoe to drop may be Bledsoe/Butler to ORL for Afflalo
— Chad Ford (@chadfordinsider) June 18, 2013
Then more shoes kept dropping in some weird insectoid scenario that seemed to make this analogy irrelevant.
Namely, as has been reported just about everywhere, the Celtics and Clippers broke off conversations regarding that potential Kevin Garnett/Doc Rivers deal with the Clippers seemingly unwilling to take the financial pill of paying the rest of Doc Rivers' and Kevin Garnett's contracts. That ended a fun few days of churning the rumor mill.
It also puts a wrench in that report from Chad Ford.
Do not expect this to end the Magic's ties to Eric Bledsoe though. Their interest and the deal they had on the table was not contingent upon the Clippers acquiring Garnett and Rivers. Although, it may still be contingent on the prevailing winds about Chris Paul's upcoming free agency, there is still reportedly "mutual interest" in making the Bledsoe and Butler for Arron Afflalo deal.
If the Magic are earnest in their pursuit of Eric Bledsoe, who would give the Magic a potentially strong point guard for the future or who would be a player they could flip closer to the deadline to a team more willing to keep him as a restricted free agent, none of this should affect those discussions.
The Clippers are looking for veteran players to bolster their lineup and keep them in championship contention. Arron Afflalo, who averaged a career-best 16.5 points per game in a much expanded role, would certainly fit that bill.
However, there is one thing that might pump the brakes on this deal.
The reports, in denying the Garnett swap with the Celtics, were that the Clippers were gun shy about taking on more salary. That may very well be one of the motivators in trying to move Bledsoe as he certainly will be highly sought after as a restricted free agent in 2014. However, taking on Afflalo's remaining three years and $23.4 million does not seem in line with cost cutting either.
That is, after all, why the Magic appear to be offering up Afflalo in this deal. Then again, that would most likely be less than what Bledsoe will fetch in the open market in a few years.
In the long run, today's news should not affect much of what the Magic may or may not be doing with the Clippers this offseason.