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Houston, Charlotte Bidding For Bonzi

The Rockets beat writers at the Houston Chronicle think the Bobcats have the inside track on the services of Bonzi Wells. Here's Jonathan Feigen:

"(W)hen predicting what free agent athletes will do, we tend to believe the reporting rule, "follow the money." You won't be right all the time, but you won't go wrong too often, either. The Bonzi chase offered a little late-summer excitement, but to me, the Rockets' chances still feel like a long shot."

If the Bobcats do sign Bonzi, it would most likely be straight-up and without the Kings help. Charlotte is almost $10 million under the salary cap, so they could give Bonzi well over the $4.2 million he could get from Houston.

Meanwhile, Melvin Ely's fate in Charlotte is up in the air. Ely plays a different position than Bonzi, of course. But Ely represents the 16th roster spot. You get a maximum of 15 players. So there's at least one odd man out if Ely signs his qualifying offer to return to the Bobcats. Which brings up the possibility of trade.

Golden State and Phoenix are said to be interested in acquiring Ely via sign and trade. Since Charlotte is under the cap, the salaries going into Charlotte (Bonzi, theoretically) wouldn't have to match up with the salaries going into Sacramento and the third-party, who would take Ely. Theoretically, this third-party would send a draft pick or young player to the Kings for facilitating the trade. Hmm.