Jackson's Agent Asks For Trade
By Randy Renner
Thunder backup point guard Reggie Jackson wants out of Oklahoma City, that's been apparent since the summer when he told me and other media members he wants to be a starting point guard in the NBA. With Russell Westbrook already having that spot nailed down, Reggie was destined to be no more than a backup, at least at that position.
Today, as the trade deadline approaches, comes word from Yahoo! Sports' Adrian Wojnarowski that Jackson's agent Aaron Mintz has in fact asked Thunder GM Sam Presti to make a deal sending Jackson somewhere else.
Presti didn't need Mintz to make a formal request, he's been working the phones about a possible Reggie deal for months.
The problem has been teams aren't willing to part with what the Thunder would like to get in return knowing that Jackson will be a restricted free agent in the summer and they might be able to sign him then without giving up anything.
The Thunder would rather have something than nothing but at the same time Presti knows Jackson has value during the team's stretch drive toward the playoffs. He has to balance that with the possibility that if Jackson stays in OKC his attitude going forward might not be the best.
Jackson spoke with reporters after practice today but didn't shed a lot of light on his situation.
When asked about the report that his agent had formally requested a trade Jackson said, "I'm basically just getting ready for tomorrow (and the game with Dallas) I'm not sure about that."
Jackson is a bit handcuffed by the NBA in his responses because he would face a possible fine if he talks about any trade demand.
When asked if he expected to be in Oklahoma City tomorrow night playing the Mavs he sidestepped the question like this, "I expect to live today to the fullest and if God blesses me hopefully I wake up tomorrow."
Does he want to be here tomorrow?
"I would love to play basketball."
Does he want to be here in Oklahoma City playing for the Thunder?
"I love to play basketball."
So should we take that as a no?
"You take it however you want, I just wanna play basketball to the best of my abilities."
When asked how he's handling all the speculation as the trade deadline approaches and what's going through his mind he stuck pretty much with that same answer.
"What's going through my mind is preparing for the Mavericks, thats about it."
As of this writing the Kings, Knicks, Bucks, Pacers, Celtics and Nuggets have all expressed an interest, depending on what moves go down in the next few hours some of those teams could be eliminated and others could step forward.
If Jackson is still with the Thunder by tipoff with the Mavericks is head coach Scott Brook concerned at all about chemistry issues or Jackson being disgruntled and distracted?
"No, I'm not concerned," he said. "I'm just focused on our guys and that's all I've ever been focused on. I just focus on the guys that I have."
It will be interesting to see just who those guys are by the time reporters talk with Brooks again just before Thursday's game with the Mavs.