If you thought the Portland Trail Blazers held the title of "Most Jilted Team in 2015 Free Agency" because of the LaMarcus Aldridge saga, you may want to update your chart. The Blazers held the crown for less than 4 days before tossing it to the poor Dallas Mavericks who, it appears, are losing center DeAndre Jordan before he even put on the uniform for them.
Jordan agreed to join the Mavericks during the NBA's free agent moratorium period. During the first week in July teams and free agents are free to negotiate but cannot sign deals until the NBA has determined the salary cap for the following season. The salary cap figures came down tonight and the moratorium ends within the hour as this is being typed, but the Mavericks are left holding an ink pen with no Jordan to sign it.
Rumblings started this morning, with rumors that the Clippers were going to make one more run at convincing Jordan to change his mind...a permissible decision but one that has happened only a handful of times in the history of free agency. As it turned out, the rumors were accurate. The Clippers visited with Jordan in Houston, Texas.
But this is when the story gets truly weird. Hearing that the Clippers were making the effort, Mavericks owner Marc Cuban requested another meeting with Jordan, only to be rebuffed. In order to make sure that their newly-netted fish didn't squirm out of the net once again, members of the Clippers organization have reportedly stayed with Jordan the entire evening, barring access to him.
So far, Clippers able to keep everyone else out of house, including Cuban, agents. Everyone. They're in four-corners until midnight Eastern.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) July 9, 2015
In story with @ramonashelburne we also report Mavs now fear they won't now get audience with Jordan as Clips have essentially surrounded him
— Marc Stein (@ESPNSteinLine) July 9, 2015
The Clippers are reported to be playing cards and video games with their newly-reacquired center until he can officially re-sign his contract.
Clippers forward Blake Griffin has gotten into the act:
Don't agree with the furniture layout but I'm not an interior designer. pic.twitter.com/23PNgQB88z
— Blake Griffin (@blakegriffin32) July 9, 2015
This craziness caps off one of the weirdest, most frantic, and in many ways most bitter moratorium periods the league has ever known. We'll talk more tomorrow about whether the moratorium has outlived its usefulness. For now, just bask in the cray-cray.
Update: And this...