Aussie star in Phoenix’s plans

Sunday Territorian - - SPORT - MATT LOGUE

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

Dellave­dova’s po­ten­tial Cleve­land home­com­ing has prompted pas­sion­ate Cava­liers to re­joice but his stay could be short-lived.

There are also re­ports the deal needs to be com­pleted quickly as un­der NBA rules play­ers traded be­fore De­cem­ber 7 (US time) 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 – NBL’s new­est fran­chise – from pre­vi­ously reach­ing out to the Boomers guard about play­ing in Aus­tralia when the time is right.

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

South East Mel­bourne would love to add Dellave- dova’s ex­pe­ri­ence to its line-up, which is shap­ing up strongly for the fran­chise’s maiden NBL sea­son in 2019-2020.

The Phoenix has al­ready signed for­mer Ade­laide star Mitch Creek, while it has its sights set on fel­low 36ers like Nathan Sobey.

De­pend­ing on the longterm NBA prospects of Dellave­dova, the Mary­bor­ough-born guard could also link up with the fran­chise.

How­ever, if it hap­pens, it won’t be un­til at least the 2020-2021 NBL sea­son if not later, if Dellave­dova picks up an­other con­tract to re­main in the NBA.

Pic­ture: AP/AARON GASH

Mil­wau­kee’s Matthew Dellave­dova drives to the bas­ket against Detroit

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