For the past few days all ESPN reporters have been hopping on the Interwebs to break rumors and stories. Since I've been obsessively checking it, I thought I could bring it over here and paraphrase for non-Insider folks (and maybe throw in some quotes).
[A few updates around 4:00 ET]: Cybit has pasted some below in the comments, but here's another: An Amare deal tonight is very unlikely (sorry Matt). The update is in conjunction with a Warriors Amare rumor, but I think it applies to any team. Since a trade for Amare would involve not only an intense examination of his injured eye and a status exam on his microfracture knee, but also some form of assurance that he would resign in 2010, it's highly unlikely all of that gets done by the draft. The item also pours water on the Houston Amare rumor, saying sources familiar with both teams are skeptical.
[Update @ 3:03 ET]: Among other things, Chad Ford reports that Houston has offered Battier and Brooks to Memphis for #2. Chad states that Memphis could unload Marko Jaric's contract in the deal. The question remains: who does Houston want? My bet would be Rubio.
[Update @ 2:13 ET]: Andy Katz reports a few nuggets: (1) Minny has a certain player in mind for the 18th pick (rumor is either Earl Clark or James Johnson). If their guy(s) aren't available, they'll trade. (2) Brandon Jennings is considering pulling out of the green room. Basically, he's scared that Golden State, NYK, and Milwaukee will all pass on him, precipitating a fall into the 20s. If he doesn't pull out, it probably means he got a guarantee from somewhere. The next two tidbits deserve quotes, since they're Bulls-centric:
• Oklahoma City, Detroit and Chicago made assurances early on Thursday that they weren't dealing their top 16 picks.
• Pittsburgh coach Jamie Dixon received a number of calls earlier this week, and as late as Thursday, about DeJuan Blair's knees. Dixon, who is en route to New Zealand to coach the USA Under 19 national team playing in the World Championships, said he told the teams, including Indiana at No. 13, that Blair never missed a practice or game in his two years. Blair's knees have been questioned because he had ACL surgery on each knee in high school.
The first bullet seems to contradict a report from Poopsworld that the Bulls and Nets have an agreement to swap if Williams is there.
[Update @ 12:31 ET]: Marc Stein reports that it's looking like Memphis will keep the #2 pick unless Minnesota gives up both #5 and #6 for it, which Minnesota says it won't do. On the Minny front, it's looking like Curry and Evans will be their two picks (if one of Rubio or Thabeet doesn't fall), but they're still aggressively working the phones for possible trades.
Here's the latest update (I'll be updating this post as more interesting stuff comes in):
Chad Ford: Watch out for the Houston Rockets. Sources say they have been really active the past 24 hours, having contacted the Grizzlies, Thunder, Kings and Timberwolves about trying to get into the lottery.
It sound like virtually everyone on Houston's roster is available. Teams report that the Rockets are trying to parlay Tracy McGrady's expiring contract and Aaron Brooks' newfound celebrity status into one of Minnesota's lottery picks. Carl Landry and Shane Battier were also mentioned as possible trade pieces.
The Rockets are also among several teams that will be making a run at Amare Stoudemire. With Shaq gone, expect the Stoudemire rumors to start heating up again.
So Dork Elvis is making moves. This kind of scares me. He's one of the better GMs in the league, and Houston has some assets. I could certainly see them making a strong play for Amare and moving up to draft Blair (who seems like the type of player who could shine on all the secret advanced metrics they use down there in Houston; yes, that's a complete guess, but whatever). Then I can imagine self-immolation.