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The Josh Howard & Drew Gooden for Caron Butler and Brendan Haywood 'Rumor' Roundup

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Mavs, Wizards talking multiplayer deal | ESPN Dallas
Although the deal could take until Monday to be finalized, sources said that the teams have essentially agreed on the principal pieces: Butler, Haywood and DeShawn Stevenson to Dallas for Josh Howard and Drew Gooden. The Mavericks must add additional low-dollar contracts to the deal to make the salary-cap math work. According to ESPN The Magazine's Ric Bucher, the most likely player would be Quinton Ross. But they are not expected to surrender prized rookie guard Rodrigue Beaubois in the swap.

Haywood could fill huge hole for Mavs | Tim MacMahon - ESPN Dallas
Haywood would fill a huge role on the Mavs' roster, especially since they can't be certain that Erick Dampier will completely recover from his knee problems this season. The Mavs desperately need a paint-protecting, shot-blocking, rebound-snatching big man to help solve their defensive woes. The 7-0, 263-pound Haywood, who ranks among the NBA's top 10 in rebounds (10.3) and blocked shots (2.06), would do that.

Butler, Haywood should energize Mavericks | Tim Cowlishaw - DMN
In two games against Boston and Charlotte last week, Butler scored 54 points. He isn't shy. He took 45 shots in those games. But if Haywood is a slight upgrade in the post or at worst a break-even exchange for Gooden, then the Mavericks have new reason to think they can get out of the first round or maybe even compete with Denver in the second. You can save facing the Lakers for another trade or two.

Meet the new Mavs-to-be | DMN
The Post recently wrote: "He first struggled to develop chemistry with Gilbert Arenas, looked uncomfortable in Saunders's offense and privately grumbled about his role with the team. Even Arenas's season-long suspension didn't free him from his season-long slump." Butler told the Post: "It's been hard to focus. It really has. You can say all the right things, about staying positive and moving forward, but it has been hard. It takes a toll on you mentally and physically. This is the only time that you can escape from all of that."

Why Mavericks are trading Josh Howard | Jean-Jacques Taylor - DMN
When Jason Kidd joined the Mavs, Howard's game should have improved dramatically because the veteran point guard usually makes everybody's life easier. It didn't happen for Josh. Now, he's gone. Maybe, he'll find success in Washington, where there's no pressure to perform.

Mavs-Wizards 'Close' On Butler-Josh Howard Trade | Mike Fisher - DB.com
Net benefit to the Mavs:    Forgetting J-Ho’s ups and downs for a moment. … Dallas gets a wing player who is superior to Josh. … gets a defensive ace at center who is superior (at least in filling a need) to Gooden – and might be superior to a bum-kneed Erick Dampier … loses other assets that are expendable … gets Oberto as a third center [ed note. or Crittenton] … retains J.J. Barea (the way I hear it), who remains a rotation piece here … keeps Roddy "untouchable.’’ … and allows themselves to remain dealt-in to the Summer of 2010 card game.

Wizards closing in on deal with Dallas | Michael Lee - Washington Post
Butler will earn $10.5 million next season. He wanted a contract extension before the season began, but the Wizards were unable to reach an agreement. He is having a difficult time adjusting to Coach Flip Saunders's system and, despite chemistry problems with Gilbert Arenas, he never got much better even after Arenas was suspended. In his last two games, Butler scored a combined 54 points and made a game-winning jumper in a win over the Orlando Magic. After that game, Butler sounded like someone who thought that a trade was inevitable. "I'll always view Washington as home. I had a great time here. I had the most success I ever had," said Butler, who made all-star appearances in 2007 and 2008.

 Loose Ends: Five Issues To Be Cleared Up For Mavs-Wiz Butler/Howard Trade To Go Through | DB.com
Singleton actually has Early Bird Rights, which means he can veto a deal (not unlike what Devean George once did in Dallas’ Devin/Kidd trade with New Jersey). I’m not sure if Singleton would do that, or why; he is likely to play more in Washington. But if he vetoes, the Wizards should be accepting of an alternative minimum-wage Mav.

The latest on the Butler/Haywood trade rumors (UPDATED) - Bullets Forever
And now we see the rub here - this trade is about getting the Wizards out of the luxury tax this season. ... That's probably why you see a) Haywood going, and b) no talent coming back. This is completely a money-saving move for this season. Doesn't make it any better (in fact, it makes it worse, which I'll try to explain later), but at least makes it more understandable.