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Report: Bobcats and Raptors talking potential Bargnani trade

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ESPN's Marc Stein is reporting that the Charlotte Bobcats are offering Ben Gordon as trade bait in a possible move to land Andrea Bargnani.

Philadelphia and Charlotte are reportedly both in the running for Andrea Bargnani
Philadelphia and Charlotte are reportedly both in the running for Andrea Bargnani
Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

For the second time in as many days, a trade rumour involving Andrea Bargnani and the Toronto Raptors has made it's way onto the Internet.

Yesterday, Sam Amico of Fox Sports Ohio reported that the Philadelphia 76ers had engaged in discussions with the Raptors about a trade that would send Spencer Hawes to Toronto for Andrea Bargnani. Earlier this afternoon, ESPN's Marc Stein tweeted the following:

Much like the trade rumour floated about yesterday, there doesn't seem to be much substance to it. The move itself would essentially function as an attempt to shed Bargnani's salary and acquire a player with a substantial expiring contract next season.

Gordon was once an impact player for the Chicago Bulls and won the Sixth Man of the Year award in the 2004-05 season, but has fallen off significantly in recent years. Gordon's lack of size and willingness to jack up a high volume of shots make him somewhat of a challenging player to fit into the rotation. Ideally, he would play a similar role to that of Jamaal Crawford in Los Angeles -- coming off of the bench and scoring as much as possible, which is the role has played for Charlotte this season. Gordon is currently averaging 12.6 points in 22 minutes per game for the Bobcats.

As I mentioned above, Gordon is really only attractive to the Raptors from a financial perspective. He has a player option worth $13.2 million for next season, which would free Toronto from the remainder of Bargnani's contract that does not expire until 2015.

From a basketball standpoint, acquiring Gordon makes little sense. Minutes are already tight on the wing with Terrence Ross and Alan Anderson coming off of the bench behind Rudy Gay and DeMar DeRozan. Putting another body ahead of Ross would only serve to stunt his development. That is not something you want to do at this point in the youngster's career.

It also doesn't seem as though Colangleo would be willing to trade Bargnani simply to shed his salary. It is possible that this rumoured discussion is preliminary one that leads to Colangelo attempting to pry one of Charlotte's young assets from them, but a simple Bargnani-for-Gordon swap doesn't make a whole lot of sense, considering Colangelo's need for the Raptors to compete right away.

Stein would later tweet, saying essentially the same thing:

Another day, another trade rumour that doesn't seem to to indicate a whole lot except that Bryan Colangelo is attempting to move Bargnani and that Bargnani's trade value is not overly high.