CLEVELAND - There`s no chance any of the rumors about Stephon Marbury coming to Cleveland are true.
"I couldn`t have a guy like that on my team," Cavaliers small forward LeBron James said Wednesday at Quicken Loans Arena prior to a game against the Orlando Magic.
James, who said he did not know the disgruntled New York Knicks point guard, did not elaborate, but his point was clear.
Upon hearing that Knicks coach Isiah Thomas planned to take him out of the starting lineup for a game in Phoenix on Tuesday night, Marbury hopped on a plane back to New York and missed the game. That started speculation as to where Marbury could be traded, with Cleveland mentioned as a possibility of becoming his fifth pro team.
The man who once proclaimed himself "the best point guard in the NBA" will make $42 million over the final two years of his contract, meaning the only conceivable way a deal could have been worked out with the Cavaliers is if it had involved Larry Hughes and another player with a high salary.
Though the Cavaliers would probably be willing to listen to offers for Hughes, who will make almost $38.5 million over the final three years of his contract, there`s no way they would take on a player like Marbury, who feuded openly with Kevin Garnett in Minnesota and has gotten into several locker room confrontations with other teammates.
The Cavaliers went 3-3 on their West Coast trip, the first time they`ve gone at least .500 on that long of a journey since 2004-05 and just the second time since 1994-95.
"When you look back on it, we played really well until the last game," James said. "We`re definitely satisfied with the way we played."
Let it Snow
According to published reports out of Detroit, Cavaliers point guard Eric Snow and his agent are trying to buy out the final two years of the veteran`s contract so he can play in Atlanta, where the 13th-year pro has an offseason home.
"It`s news to me," Brown said when asked about the matter.
Snow`s agent, Steve Kauffman, denied the report to an area reporter, but did admit the Cavaliers and Hawks had trade talks involving Snow over the summer. The 34-year-old is slated to earn $6.7 million this season and $7.3 million in 2007-08.
Noland may be reached at email@example.com or 330-721-4061.