Where do these rumors come from?

Obviously, rumors and innuendo spread like wildfire on the internet, and at times they quickly become supposed fact. For example, take this gem from Tom Knott of the Washington Times.

The Mavericks are said to be interested in the fifth pick and the prospect of drafting Jordan Hill.

The teams have made nice in the past, most recently in the swap that secured Jamison in 2004. The Mavericks also were kind enough to relieve the Wizards of Juwan Howard in 2001.

The Mavericks apparently are willing to part with either Jason Terry or Josh Howard to sweeten a potential deal. The Mavericks would be obligated to accept an expiring contract of the Wizards, the one belonging to either the Poet or Mike James.

Notice the language…The Mavs “are said to be interested” and “apparently are willing to part” with one of their core players for the #5 pick. Anytime a writer starts throwing phrases like “are said” and words like “apparently” into his piece, he’s probably just spreading a rumor. But did Knott start this rumor? He writes for a Washington paper, so his job is to talk about the Wizards — how would he know what the Mavs want to do? This DIME post references Knott’s article. So does the ESPN rumor section. It appears that Knott is the source.

But when you read what Knott wrote, it’s clear that he is no source at all. This is pure speculation, but he says it as if it’s widely known that the Mavs want to move up and that they’d be willing to give up Jason Terry or Josh Howard. How convenient — the Wizards are in “win now” mode and could really use another wing to complement Gilbert Arenas and Caron Butler at off guard.

However, aren’t the Mavs in “win now” mode too? In fact, you could argue that with Dirk Nowitzki’s championship window most definitely closing, that Dallas is further into “win now” territory than the Wizards are. Why would they want to give up Howard or Terry, two important pieces to their championship puzzle? The DIME piece says this would be a good fiscal move for Mark Cuban, but since when has he ever cared about his payroll? Why would he approve a move that is going to set the Mavs back (as this move almost certainly would)? According to Knott, the Mavs are “supposedly” interested in using that #5 pick to draft Jordan Hill, a raw player with a ton of upside. Why would the Mavs trade away a proven wing for a project that plays the same position as their star player? It just doesn’t make any sense.

I am as guilty as the next blogger of kicking around these rumors, but I’m not going to just make something up. And when something sounds dumb, I’ll say so. This one sounds dumb.

So Wizards fans, I may be wrong, but don’t hold your breath hoping to see Josh Howard or Jason Terry in your starting lineup this November. Unless Cuban wants to get rid of Howard’s tendency to get into trouble, there isn’t much in it for him.

Follow the Scores Report editors on Twitter @clevelandteams and @bullzeyedotcom.

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