Phoenix in­ter­est in Delly

Sunday Mail - - SPORT - MATT LOGUE

SOUTH East Mel­bourne Phoenix of­fi­cials will re­new talks with Aus­tralian NBA star Matthew Dellave­dova about an even­tual NBL home­com­ing af­ter re­ports he has been traded from Mil­wau­kee back to for­mer fran­chise Cleve­land.

ESPN’s Adrian Wo­j­narowski re­ports the Bucks are send­ing a pack­age of Dellave­dova, John Hen­son and first (pro­tected) and se­cond-round draft picks in 2021 to the Cavs in ex­change for Ge­orge Hill and Sam Dekker – pend­ing league ap­proval.

Dellave­dova spent three sea­sons in Cleve­land and won a cham­pi­onship along­side LeBron James in 2016, be­fore sign­ing a lu­cra­tive four-year $US38 mil­lion con­tract with the Bucks later that year.

The 28-year-old Boomers guard has had a tough start to the sea­son un­der new Bucks coach Mike Bu­den­holzer, av­er­ag­ing the fewest min­utes of his ca­reer (8.1) af­ter he fell out of the team’s ro­ta­tion.

Dellave­dova’s po­ten­tial Cleve­land home­com­ing has prompted pas­sion­ate Cava­liers to re­joice, but his stay could be short­lived.

There are also re­ports that the deal needs to be com­pleted quickly, as un­der NBA rules play­ers traded be­fore De­cem­ber 7 can still be moved again be­fore the trade dead­line in Fe­bru­ary.

Re­gard­less, Dellave­dova has one year and about $10 mil­lion left on his NBA con­tract. This hasn’t stopped of­fi­cials from the Phoenix – the NBL’s new­est fran­chise – from pre­vi­ously reach­ing out to him about play­ing in Aus­tralia when the time is right.

These dis­cus­sions will be re­vis­ited fol­low­ing Dellave­dova’s trade af­ter Mil­wau­kee to Cleve­land, which has placed un­cer­tainty over his NBA fu­ture un­til a deal is fi­nalised.

The Phoenix have al­ready signed for­mer Ade­laide star Mitch Creek, while they have their sights set on fel­low 36ers like Nathan Sobey.

Pic­ture: PAUL SANCYA/AP

MINE: Sixer Ben Sim­mons pulls down a re­bound against Detroit.

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