Friday, March 19, 2010

Best Trade Deadline Moves

The title of this entry is self-explanatory. A few weeks have past since the trade deadline, and it seems like an appropriate time now to comment on who were the winners and losers.

+ Dallas gets Brendan Haywood, Caron Butler, DeShawn Stevenson
+ Washington gets Josh Howard, Drew Gooden, Quinton Ross, James Singleton

This trade actually worked out nicely for both teams. It catapults DAL into title contender status. It gives them some much needed toughness and defense. Haywood has been a beast in the middle for Dallas, who desperately needed a replacement for the oft-injured Dampier. Tough Juice is a big improvement over Howard; it also helps that he is actually healthy and playing. This trade pushes Terry to the bench where he excels in the 6th man role. A line-up of Kidd, Butler, Marion, Nowitzki, Haywood can make some big noise in the playoffs. They actually have the defense to match their offensive firepower. For WAS, it was a salary dump move. Stevenson and Butler are owed nearly $30 million over this and next season. Trading away Haywood frees up playing time for Blatche (who has been a revelation) and McGee. Also Singleton has been a solid addition to their frontcourt. He can provide rebounds and blocked shots and has some nice upside. WAS just needed to start over. And this gives them an opportunity to evaluate their young players.

+ Portland gets Marcus Camby
+ LA Clippers get Steve Blake, Travis Outlaw

I don't particularly care for this trade. It doesn't really benefit either team much. True, POR desperately need a big man. But they are fighting for the 8th playoff seed in the West, and chances are Camby will not resign with them during the offseason. So he was just a one-year rental. Both Blake and Outlaw are expiring contracts, so it's not like they came out better financially. I guess one positive is that players now have more defined roles on the team, and they can worry less about fighting for playing time. It's addition by subtraction, in a sense. Miller is the #1 PG, and Bayless is the backup. Batum and Fernandez are the main guys at SF now. For the Clippers, they get a nice backup PG in Blake, and a decent prospect in Outlaw. But it doesn't really help this team much in the short-term or the long-term. Surely they could have gotten some draft picks or something for Camby, right? I just don't get this trade for them.

+ Cleveland Gets Antawn Jamison, Sebastian Telfair
+ Washington gets Zydrunas Ilgauska, Al Thornton, 2010 1st Round Pick (from Cavs), rights to Emir Preldzic
+ LA CLippers get Drew Gooden

CLE comes out ahead in a big way. They pick up an all-star caliber without giving up Hickson. And it looks like Big Z will re-sign with the Cavs for a championship-run. So all they gave up was a late 1st round pick. Brilliant. Jamison is the stretch 4 that they were looking for. He is a solid defender, willing passer, prolific scorer, and just great teammate. He will find a way to fit in on this team and become a reliable secondary option on this team. Mo Williams was awful last year in the playoffs. It will be interesting to see how this team gels once Shaq comes back. I like Jamison on this more than Amare. And this move gives CLE a legitimate shot at winning the title. They are the team to beat now. Once again, I have no idea why LAC is involved in this trade. They just traded away a nice prospect in Al Thornton who is signed to a cheap deal. And got back an expiring contract in Gooden, who will not likely sign back with them. I just don't get it. For WAS, this continues their rebuilding program. They get a nice prospect in Thornton, a draft pick from CLE, and they dump Jamison's salary. It's a WIN-WIN situation for them. Could they have gotten more for Jamison? Maybe. But when you are desperate you have to make desperate moves. And this was the right move to make by WAS.

+ Chicago gets Hakim Warrick, Joe Alexander
+ Milwaukee gets John Salmons, 2010 & 2011 2nd Round Picks, option to switch 2010 First Round Picks (Top-10 Protected)

This is proving to be the most underrated trade of the season. Salmons has elevated this team from borderline playoff team to scary first round opponent. They are 12-2 since the trade. And are playing great basketball. He's a reliable scorer and play-maker, and has nice range on his jump shot. They are not missing Redd one bit. This MIL team has a bright future. I really like their core of Jennings, Salmons, Delfino and Bogut. Initially, I thought they were giving up too much for Salmons, but he has really played brilliantly. He's a huge upgrade over Bell or whoever else they had to start before him. For CHI, it's mainly a salary dump. They also get some draft pick consideration. But it's mainly salary dump. They were having trouble finding playing time for Hinrich and Salmons, so one of them had to be traded. It's all about being in the right system and getting the right opportunities. Chicago is positioning itself nicely for the offseason, where they can sign one of the major stars.

+ Houston Gets Kevin Martin, Hilton Armstrong, Jared Jeffries, Jordan Hill, 1st Round Pick (from Knicks) (Top-5 Protected), Rights to Exchange 2011 1st Round Picks (with Knicks) (Top-1 Protected)
+ Sacramento gets Larry Hughes, Carl Landry, Joey Dorsey
+ New York gets Tracy McGrady, Sergio Rodriguez

Yikes, this is a complicated trade. But I like the move for all involved parties. Houston gets a big-time scorer to compliment their feisty defense. Martin and Brooks will form a formidable duo. I can't wait to see what this team is like next year with Yao back and healthy (hopefully). Jordan Hill is a nice prospect. And they get a 1st round pick from the Knicks also. It's a shame to see Landry go, but his departure frees up minutes for Scola. You need to give up something to get something. T-Mac was just dead weight on this team. Jeffries is a nice defender who can play multiple positions. He's a nice fit for this team off of the bench. Sacramento gets rid of a huge contract in Martin, who proved that he cannot play with Evans, and gets a nice prospect in Landry, who is one of the most underpaid athletes in the game. Dorsey is potentially a gem in the rough. NYK get their man T-Mac. And more importantly, get his expiring contract. Now they'll have the money to sign 2 big free agents this summer. I doubt either one will be Wade or Lebron, though. Rodriguez gets a chance to shine in New York. Getting rid of Jefferies contract as huge. Giving up the draft picks could come back and haunt them though. If they can't sign anyone of caliber. They are putting all of their eggs into one basket.

+ Charlotte gets Tyrus Thomas
+ Chicago gets Acie Law, Flip Murray, Future 1st Round Pick

Chicago makes another move for the future. They trade away Thomas for a 1st round pick. It's not a bad move at all. They were starting Gibson over Thomas anyway. They were tired of his inconsistency and his lack of maturity. So I approve of the trade, if they had no plans to resign him during the offseason. It's better to get something than nothing, right? He has all of the talent in the world, but just can't put it together consistently. Acie Law and Flip Murray are decent role players. But I'm not sure if either sticks with the team past this year. For CHA, it's a nice gamble. They get a lottery-talent player who can help them immediately. He's a great defender and should fit in well on this team, who is desperate for more depth in the frontcourt. What some people forget is that he is still young. He's got great athleticism and upside, and Larry Brown hopes he can thrive in a 6th man role. He's had some up and down success since the trade, but could still prove a valuable addition in the long-term. Charlotte has been a pleasant surprise this year.

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